Saturday, September 21, 2019

Rutherford Revised (327)

327. To the Earl of Balcarras   From St. Andrews 24 Dec 1649

[Alexander Lindsay, second Lord Balcarras, and first Earl of Balcarras, to whom this letter is addressed, was a man of superior talents, and espoused the cause of the Covenant. He commanded a troop of horse in the Covenanters’ army at the battle of Alford, 2nd July 1645, when General Baillie was defeated by Montrose. He was one of the Commissioners despatched by the Parliament of Scotland, 19th December 1646, to King Charles I., with their last proposals, which his Majesty rejected; upon which the Scottish army surrendered him to the English Parliament, and retired from England. When, in 1648, troops were raised with the design of rescuing the King from the English Parliament, and restoring him to liberty and power, without requiring from him any concessions to his subjects, which was called The Engagement,” Balcarras took an active part in this enterprise, for which Rutherford, by the way, tenders to him a reproof. On the arrival of Charles II. in Scotland, 1650, he repaired to his Majesty, by whom he was advanced to the dignity of Earl of Balcarras. He was High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland which met at St. Andrews, 16th July 1651. In 1652 he settled with his family at St. Andrews, keeping up a correspondence with his exiled sovereign; and in 1653 again took arms, and joined in an ineffectual attempt to uphold the Royal cause against Cromwell. His estate, after this, being sequestrated, he withdrew to the Continent. His Lordship did not live to see the Restoration of Charles, having died of consumption in the prime of life, at Breda, on the 30th of August 1659. His mortal remains were brought over to Scotland, and interred at Balcarras. 

My Very Honourable Lord,I am sorry that your Lordship should be offended at any ominous misinformation concerning your supposed refusing to approve of ministers. For the general I can say nothing, being utterly ignorant of it. I hope your Lordship will make the best use of it may be. For myself, I owe no thanks to any that have named me as the object of any refusal to approve; for, truly, I do not value any of these when, as the conscience of my innocence shows me (and, for anything truly known to me) that I offended no nobleman in the kingdom, far less my Lord Balcarras, whose public deservings have been such as I value him to have been most instrumental in this work of God. I hope, my Lord, you will pardon me to make a little exception in the matter of the late sinful engagement. And therefore, my Lord, I beg you to forget that business; for since your Lordship said of me, in your letter to Mr. David Forret, more than I deserve, I shall be satisfied with it as an expiation, more than any disapproval of me can amount to by millions of degrees. And therefore I beg your Lordship to accept of this for anything that any could say to your Lordship of that business. If I had thought so much of myself as the disapproval of me had been a sinful neglect (in fact I know there is little ground for the contrary), I should have spoken to your Lordship myself. So trusting your Lordship will rest satisfied, I am, your Lordships, at power in the Lord, S. R.

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