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judge it to be a truth of God, and a part of the kingdom of Jesus Christ, for which every Christian, if he be called to it, should suffer. The Lord bless you, and make you a blessing to bis church, and you are a blessing." He did that morning, none moving any such thing to him, expressly desire the person that had written to him all the time of bis sickness, who was going a little out of the town, to execute somewhat relating to the security of his children's provision, that he would come in to him about twelve or one o'clock, for be bad somewhat to write that would take time. And when he asked, if he would not do it now? “ No," said he, “ for I must think of it.” And when he came in, he did after dinner fall very weak, yet with wonderful calmness, presentness, and composure of mind, caused bim to write the following testimony to presbyterian government, whereof he had spoken the night before, to divers ministers, and for which he bad desired the young man that wrote to him to baste him in again, so much was the thing in his heart, and so deliberate was he in it.
Mr. William Tullidaff, one of the subscribing witnesses to this testimony, came in after the writing of it, most occasionally, knowing nothing at all of such a business ; whom, after the testimony was subscribed by himself and the witnesses, after the distinct reading of it over, he commended as a very faithful friend, “ and whom," he said, • he respected, especially for the grace of God in him." Adding, moreover, “ they say he is led by me, and that it is by my influence upon him that he doth not conform : but I say it before you, brother, (directing bis speech to his brother-in-law) that it was not through my influence, but through the strength of reason in himself, that he hath not done it.” He continued in a most sweet and divine frame of spirit all that night; so that when one at the other end of the room, was at supper, blessing the table, and speaking somewhat of a frame fit for heaven, he cried out, “ O to be there, O to be there !" And in midst of the night spake most refreshingly, thus : “ I would fain, I would fain be taken up with the love of Jesus Christ, and be exercised in commending of it, which I hope shall be my exercise to all eternity : I think I will now lay by my doubtings, and stay myself on him. Many, many challenges, but now the feud is taken away, the feud is taken away; he bath said, “because I live, ye shall live also.'” When after sitting up a little, he laid his head down on his pillow, he said, with great weight and seriousness, “ Many say, who will show us any good ? But, Lord, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us, for thou hast caused more joy and gladness to my beart, than they have, when their corn and wine abound; I will lay me down and sleep, for thou only makest me to be in safety: I would not for a thousand worlds, for a thousand worlds, change my present condition with their bishoprics." Aud when it was said to him, “ It is another sort of sweetness and satisfaction that ariseth from the hope of seeing God's face, than these things can afford," he said, “ Nay, even from present approbation of myself in the course wherein I have suffered.” A little after, be said, “ I hope my anchor is cast in good ground, it will not drive, but draw me home to the harbour." He did twice that samo night pray sweetly himself, being much therein taken up with the
Mediator's sympaty with his afflicted members. Now, are all these 80 gracious sayings and deliberate doings, the sayings and doings of a man that knew not what he said or did ? What man of conscience, ingenuity, or reason, will say it ?
On Friday, he called for his brother-in-law, and said, “ Brother, O for one hour's converse with Him, for one hour's converse with Him." On Saturday, in the evening, after he had been much tossed with sickness all the day, bis brother-in-law told him that Dr. Yeoanan, whom he had caused send for, was come, and asked what be was doing? He answered, I am longing, longing for a sight of that blessed face : O blessed be he that laid down bis life at Jerusalem for poor sinners! O the love, O the love, O the love of Jesus ! I bless him, that ever was pleased to reveal himself to me: O what would have become of me if he had not done it?” When it was said to him, that it would have been sad lying in that posture, if Christ had not died, and that death would have had a most dreadful aspect, he said pleasantly, “O death, where is thy sting ?” Then a little after, when somewhat was spoken of sin, he said, “O to be freed from indwelling corruption, from a body of sin and death.”
On the Lord's day, being the 6th of March, he was sorely oppressed with sickness and great weakness, yet he said, “ He knew it was the Sabbath.” Then he said, “ Poor thing, poor thing, under a clog !" He would fain have spoken somewhat further ; and when it was asked what he would say ? he replied, “ What shall I say, what shall I say, but Jesus, but Jesus ; I am heavy and dead, but he must pardon, and I hope he will pardon." Then he desired that the family would withdraw for seeking God together. Toward the evening, he said, “ O friendship with Jesus Christ ! O friendship, friendship, with Jesus Christ!" When he was inquired whether the Lord had left any doubts with him about his friendship, he, after a while's silence, very soberly said, “ I dare not doubt, I dare not doubt; but I fear a new storm." Then, a little after, he said, “ Dearest Lord, dearest Lord, sweet Saviour, save me from all that I would be saved from; he will save me from all that I fear : I was beginning to fear, but he will disappoint my fears." Then he did, griping his brother-in-law fast by the arm, cry with great earnestness, " o to apprehend Jesus Christ~ brother, brother.” Then be said, sweetly, “ Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name.” When it was said to him, “ It is but a little, and it will be sung ; • bless him who bath pardoned all thine iniquity, and hath bealed all thy diseases, which he is now a healing ;'" he said, “ That will sing sweetly, that will sing sweetly.” Speaking of a certain person,* he said, “ I have said, and say so still, that God will honour him, as he hath honoured Him; Gnd will bless him and his family; I am persuaded God will bless his family, I am persuaded of it.” A little after, h; aid, “ Dear Lord Jesus !—the matter of a song, pot of straitened words, but of enlarged praise to all eternity."
On Monday morning, being the 7th of March, his brotner-in-law
• Mr. John Carstairs.
did inquire how he had been all that night? He said, “ Not well, but I bless the Lord I had some comfort. I would fain have sung a
you if ye had been here, I would have sung a part of it myself:” and being inquired what psalm ? he said, “the 103d," which he had caused his son William to read to him a little before. Toward the evening, when upon an apparent change, his relations were weeping about him, he said, “ Would ye have me coming again when 80 near the shore, when so near the shore, when I am so near home ?" In the night when he was so full of tossings, even till the morning, he spoke some sweet words in his agony: “ I am weak in my thoughts, but God will pardon ; he hides all mine iniquities.” When it was asked at him, if there were any challenges now haunting him, he answered, “ I have many, many and grievous challenges; but Jesus Christ answereth them all; through him, matters are fully taken up betwixt God and me. Blessed be God, blessed be God that ever was pleased to send his Son to die for sinners ; what would have become of us if he had not died.” When he was inquired, whether the thoughts of being a while under sharp affliction were terrible to bim, he said, “ Not: death is not terrible, but sweet to me; I will assure you, death is not terrible to me, for things are taken up betwixt God and me." When God's pardoning mercy in Jesus Christ was spoken of, he said, “ It should make him to be extolled in praise.” And when it was further said to him, there was indeed good ground for
• Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity ?' he replied, “ I would fain sing it, but challenges detain me from it a while"; yet all matters are taken up betwixt him and me."
On Tuesday, having been silent almost all the day, when he was inquired why he spake not ? he said, “ I cannot, I am very weak, but I hope I am strong in the Lord Jesus.”
On Wednesday morning, the 9th of March, being exceedingly weak, he was inquired if his mind was quiet ? to which he answered, “ Somewhat quiet, but I cannot speak ; fain would I be enlarged, to speak to the praise and commendation of the Redeemer.” And being asked, whether there were any challenges moving now about him? he said, “ None, but ch as are answered by Jesus Christ.” And when one sitting by, spoke of the answer of a good conscience, he cried, “ No answer to challenges but through the blood of Jesus Christ.” And when it was said to him, that ere long he would be associated with the spirits of just men made perfect, and sing his part of their hallelujahs before the throne, be lifted up his eyes and hands with much gravity and seriousness, a considerable space.
A little after, having spoken a few words about common business, when he was desired not to trouble himself now about these things, he said, composedly, “ Let then all business be laid aside : welcome, welcome, Lord Jesus ; come, come, sweet Saviour; make haste, make haste, Lord; basten thy pace, and come on the mountains.” On this occasion the woman that waited on him, and had waited on his first wife when she was a dying, said, that she did chirm* and sing
. i e, chaunt or hum.
eweerly a whole night, and that in the next morning she lifted up her Cyes stedfastly, and said, I see him as it were putting his head through the clouds, and coming on the mountains.' And when the woman was inquired how long that was before her death ? Mr. Wood overhearing, said, “ it was the same day she died : and," said he, “ I thought I then saw heaven." About eleven o'clock, the defluxion coming down mightily on him, it was said by one standing by, there 18 a torrent of it, whereupon he took occasion to cry out : “ A torrent of the love of God, a torrent of the righteousness of Christ ; I cannot enough wonder at the love of God, and at the love of Jesus Christ in his purchase ; what would have become of me, if he had not died ?" he added, “ Lord, pardon all mine iniquity; Lord Jesus, intercede for me, and interpose betwixt me and the justice of God.” When it was said to him, “your dissolution seems to be at hand; put yourself 10a posture to wait for the coming of the Lord ; let your soul be on wing to meet him.” “ To meet him," said he, “ to meet him, blythe at my heart, blythe at my heart ; he will give me wings, he hath promised it.” In the night he was sorely oppressed, and much tossed with his fever. Yet, when some death-like passions* did overtake him, he was gathered and sweetly composed, and said to his weeping relations, “ Hold me no longer, I am going ; I desire to take leave of you.” Then he spake a few weighty words in reference to his own
“ There are many faults, but he will pardon them all : Death naketh a fast bargain betwixt God and the soul, I mean of the believer. The bargain is agreed, death is not terrible, but sweet to me; Jesus Christ hath taken away the sting of it. Good news, good news, I am coming to heaven." When it was said to him, “ God maketh your passage easy,” he replied, with wonderful presentness of mind, “ He hath made it easy, by a word that he spake to me even now; it is in 2 Cor. v. · He hath made him to be sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God through him.'” When he was inquired if all fears and doubts were now blown away, he said, “ I am scarce able to speak ;" yet, with lifted up eyes and hands, he said, “ They are blown away, only, only through the righteousness of Jesus." After which time he had but little speech ; only on Friday he was overheard cry, “ Lord, loose a poor prisoner !"
Oo the Lord's day, March 13th, about two or three in the morning, when he was inquired, if under this sore and long conflict he did win quietly to believe that the love of God was the same to bim, he said, sweetly, “ Yes, blessed be God, blessed be God; I find no change in him, he is constant, and just the same he was." After which he spake few sentences, or none at all. He fell asleep in the Lord, on Tuesday the 15th of March, about ten o'clock in the morning.t
. i. e. pange.
† The above very interesting account of Mr. Wood's last words, now published for the first time, has been copied expressly for this Work from a MS. in the Advocates' Library at Edinburgh. There are various circumstances which render it probable that it was written by Mr. John Carstairs, Mr. Wood's brother-in-law, and one of the witnesses to his testimony. At all events, there is every reason for regarding it as perfectly accurate in all ite details. [MS. in Bibl. Jurid. Edin. 24. Jac. V. i. 21. art. 70.]
2. His TESTIMONY. “ I James Wood, being very shortly, by appearance, to render up my spirit to the Lord, find myself obliged to leave a word behind me, for my vindication before the world. It bath been said of me, that I bave, in word at least, departed from my wonted zeal for the presbyterian government, expressing myself, concerning it, as if it were a matter not to be accounted of, and that no man should trouble bimself therefore, in matter of practice. Surely any Christian that knows me in this kirk, will judge that this is a wrong done to me. It is true, that I being under sickness, have said sometimes, in conference about
my soul's state, that I was taken up about greater business than any thing of that kind; and what wonder I said so, being under such wrestling anent my interest in Jesus Christ, which is a matter of far greater concernment than any external ordinance ? But for my estimation of presbyterian government, the Lord knoweth, that since the day he convinced my heart, which was by a strong hand, that it the ordinance of God, appointed by Jesus Christ, for governing and ordering his visible church, I never had the least change of thought conceruing the necessity of it, nor of the necessity of the use of it. And I declare, before God and the world, that I still account so for it ; and that, however there may be some more precious ordinances, that is so precious, that a true Christian is obliged to lay down his life for the profession thereof, if the Lord shall see meet to put him to trial; and for myself, if I were to live, I would account it my glory to seal this word of my testimony with my blood. Of this declaration I take God, angels, and men, to be my witnesses ; and have subscribed these presents, at St. Andrews, on the 2d March, 1664, about seven hours in the afternoon, before Mr. William Tullidaff, minister at Dumbog, Mr. Jobn Carstairs, my brother-in-law, and John Pitcairn, writer hereof.
JAMES WOOD."* WILLIAM TULLIDAFF, John CARSTAIRS,
Witnesses.t John PITCAIRN,
. Wodrow's History, vol. i.
+ It may serve to give the reader some idea of the cruelty and injustice that prevailed during the times in question, to state, that these persons, for simply witnessing to the subscription of a friend, were brought to much trouble. " When Mr. Wood's testimony came to be propaled, the primate raged terribly, and caused sumipon Mr. Carstairs, Mr. Tullidaff, and the notary, before the bigb commission court. The bishop alleged, yea, spread the report pretty publicly, that the notary informed him that when Mr. Wood was in great weakness, Mr. Carstairs bad imposed upon him, and made him subscribe that paper which he had formed for him. But when Mr Tullidaff and the notary came before them, both of the declared that the notary wrote it at his desire, and attested it, as it was his office to do. Here the primate once more got the lie given him to his face; and when the two bad continued some time in prison, and nothing worthy of death and bonds could be fixed upon them, the bisbop was forced to dismiss them, without any farther punishment, having shown his malice, and got sbame for his reward. Mr. Carstairs thought fit, on wany considerations, to abscond, and did not compear."—Wodrow, vol. i. p. 204.