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respondence with Diabolians, and have forgotten our tender mercies; no inarvel then if the enemy both within and without should design and plot our ruin ; and what time like this to do it? The sickness is now in the town, and we have been made weak thereby. Many a good-meaning man is dead, and the Diabolians of late grown stronger and stronger.
Besides, quoth the subordinate preacher, I have received from this good truth teller, this one inkling further, that he understood by those that he overheard, that several letters have lately passed between the Furies and the Diabolians, in order to our destruction. When Mansoul heard all this, and not being able to gainsay it, they lift up their voice and wept. Mr. Prywell did also in the presence of the townsmen, confirm all that their subordinate preacher had said. Wherefore they now set afresh to bewail their folly, and to a doubling of petitions to Shaddai and his Son. They also break the business to the captains, high commanders, and men of war in the town of Mansoul, entreating of them to use the means to be strong, and to take good courage, and that they would look after their harness, and make themselves ready to give Diabolus battle by night or by day, should he come, as they are informed he will, to beleaguer the town of Mansoul.
When the captains heard this, they being always true lovers of the town of Mansoul, what do they, but like so many Sampsons, they shake themselv and come together to consult and contrive how to defeat those bold and hellish contrivances that were upon the wheel, by the means of Diabolus and his friends against the now sickly, weakly, and inuch impoverished town of Mansoul; and they agreed upon these following particulars :
1. That the gates of Mansoul should be kept shut, and made fast with bars and locks, and that all persons that went out or came in, should be very strictly exaBb
mined by the captains of the guards, 1 Cor. xvi. 13. To the end, said they, that those that are managers of the plot amongst us, may either coming or going be taken ; and that we may also find out who are the great contivers, amongst us, of our rain, Lam. iii. 40.
2. The next thing was, that a strict search should be made for all kind of Diaboliavs, throughout the whole town of Mansoul; and that every man's house from top to bottom should be looked into, and that too, house by house, that if possible a farther discovery might be made of all such among them as bad a hand in these designs, Heb. xii. 15, 16,
3. It was further concluded upon, that wheresoever or with whonisoever any of the Diabolians were found, that even those of the town of Mansoul that bad given them house and harbour, should to their shame, and the warning of others, do penance in the open place ; Jer. ii. 34. ch. v. 26. Ezek. xvi. 52.
4. It was moreover resolved by the famous town of Mansoul, that a public, fast and a day of humiliation should be kept throughout the whole corporation, to the justifying of their Prince, the abasing of themselves before him for their transgressions against him, and against Shaddai his Father, Joel i. 14. chap. ii. 15, 16. It was further resolved, that all such in Mansoul as did not on that day endeavour to keep that fast, and to humble themselves for their faults, but should mind their worldly employments, or be found wandering up and down the streets, should be taken for Diabolians, and suffer as Diabolians for such wicked doings.
5. It was further concluded then, that with what speed, and with what warmth of mind they could, thor. would renew their humiliation for sin, and their petitions to Shaddai for help; they also resolved to send tidings to the court of all that Mr. Prywell had told them, Jer. xxxvii. 4.
O. It was also determined that thanks should be given by the town of Mansoul to Mr. Prywell, för his diligent seeking of the welfare of their town; and further, that forasmuch as he was so naturally inclined to seek their good, and also to undermine their foes, they gave him a commission of Scout-master General, for the good of the town of Mansoul.
When the corporation with their captains had thus concluded, they did as they had said ; they shut up their gates, they made for Diabolians strict search, they made those with whom any was found, to do penance in the open place. They kept their fast, and renewed their petitions to their Prince, and Mr. Prywell managed bis charge, and the trust that Mansoul had put into his hands, with great conscience and good fidelity; for he gave himselt wholly up to his employ, and that not only within the town, but he went out to pry, to see, and to hear.
And rot niany days after, he provided for his journey, and went towards Hellgate-bill, into the country where Doubters were, where he heard of all that had been taiked of in Mansoul, and he perceived also that Diabolus was almost ready for his march, &c. So he cảme back with speed, and calling the captains and elders of Mansoul together, he told them where he had been, what he had heard, and what he had seen.
Particularly he told them, that Diabolus was almost ready for his march, and that he had made old Mr. Incredulity, that once brake prison in Mansoul, the General of his army ; that his army consisted of all Doubters, and that their number was above twenty thousand. He told moreover, that `Diabolus did intend to bring with him the chief Princes of the Infernal Pit, and that he would make them chief captains over bis Doubiers. He told moreover that it was certainly true, that several of the black den would with Diabolus ride reformades, to reduce the town of Mansoul to the obedience of Diabolus their Prince.
He said moreover, that he understood by the Doubters, among whom he had been, that the reason why old Incredulity was made General of the whole army, was, because none truer than he to the tyrant; and because he had an implacable spight against the welfare of the town of Mansoul. Besides, said he, he remembers the affront that Mansoul has given him, and he is resolved to be revenged of them.
But the black Princes shall be made high commanders, only. Incredulity shall be over them all, because he can more easily and dexterously beleaguer the town of Mansoul, than any of the Princes besides, Heb. xii. 1.
Now when the captains of Mansoul, with the elders of the town, had heard the tidings that Mr. Prywell did bring, they thought it expedient without further delay, to put into execution the laws against the Diabolians, their Prince had made and given them in commandment to manage against them. Wherefore forthwith a diligent and impartial search was made in all houses in Mansoul, for all and all manner of Diabolians. Now in the house of Mr. Mind, and in the house of the great Lord Will-be-will, were two Diabolians found. In Mr. Mind's house was one Lord Covetousness found, but he had changed his name to Prudent-thrifty. In my Lord Will-be-will's house one Lasciviousness was found, but he had changed his name to Harmless-mirth, These two the captains and elders of the town of Mansoul took and committed to custody, under the hand of Mr. Trueman the gaoler; and this man handled them so severely, and loaded them so well with irons, that they both fell into a very deep consumption, and died in 'the prison ; their masters also, according to the agreement of the captains and elders, were brought to do penance in the open place, to their shame, and for a warning to the rest of the town of Mansoul.
Now this was the manner of penance in those days; the persons offending being made sensible of the evil of their doings, were enjoined open confession of their faults, and a strict amendment of their lives.
After this the captains and elders of Mansoul sought yet to find out more Diabolians, wherever they lurked, whether in dens, caves, holes, vaults, or where else they could, in or about the wall or town of Mansoul. But though they could plainly see their footing, and so follow them by their track, and smell to their holds, even to the mouths of their caves and dens, yet take and do justice upon them they could not, their ways were so crooked, and their holds so strong, and they so quick to take sanctuary there.
Bat Mansoui did now with so stiff an hand rule over the Diabolians that were left, that they were glad to shrink into corners. Time was when they durst walk openly and in the day, but now they were forced to embrace privacy and tbe night, Time was when a Mansoulian was their companion, but now they counted them deadly enemies. This change did Mr. Prywell's intelligence make in the town of Mansoul.
By this time Diabolus had finished his army which he intended to bring with him for the ruin of the town of Mansoul, and had set over them captains and other field officers, such as liked his furious stomach best; himself was Lord Paramount; Incredulity was general of his army; their highest captains shall be named afterwards, but now for their officers, colours, and 'scutcheons.
1. Their first captain was Captain Rage, he was captain over the Election-doubters; his were the red colours; his standard-bearer was Mr. Destructive, and the great red dragon he had for his 'scutcheon, Rev. xii. 3, 4. 13, 15, 17.