Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Rutherford Revised (146)

146. To Mr James Bruce, Minister of the Gospel  from Aberdeen, 14 March 1637

(Minister from 1630 in Kingsbarns, St Andrews presbytery. Refused to conform to episcopal ceremonies and the Anglican liturgy but was not removed. Member of the Glasgow Assembly. Died 1662)

Reverend and well-beloved brother, - Grace, mercy and peace be to you. Knowing only that we are children of one Father I think it good to write to you. My situation, being imprisoned for the honour of my royal Prince and King, Jesus, is a fitting witness for such a sovereign King. When I first came here I was very sad, struggling with challenges: troubled in my spirit (as I still am), because of my silent Sabbaths, and for a bereaved people, young ones newly weaned from the breast and taken from the children's table. I thought I was a dry tree thrown over the vineyard wall. But my secret thoughts about Christ's love, at His sweet and long desired return to my soul, were found to be a lie about Christ's love, formed by the tempter and my own heart. And I am sure it was so. Now there is in me greater peace and security than before; the court has been summoned and dismissed for it was not done in Christ's name. I was wrong to have called Christ unkind, in hazy mind and my fever, I thought wrongly of Him. Now, now he is pleased to feast a poor prisoner, and to refresh me with unspeakable and glorious joy so that the Holy Spirit witnesses that my sufferings are for Christ's truth; and God forbid that I should deny the testimony of the Holy Spirit and make Him a false witness. Now, I myself write out of some small experience, that Christ's cause, even with the cross, as better than the king's crown; and that His rebukes are sweet, His cross scented, the walls of my prison fair and large, my losses gain.
   I want you dear brother, to help me to praise, and to remember me in your prayer to God. Grace, grace be with you.
   Yours in out Lord Jesus.  S. R.

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