Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

a

yourselves to be his. Poor Mansoul! what shall I do unto thee? Shall I save thee? Shall I destroy thee? What shall I do unto thee?-Shall I fall upon thee and grind thee to powder, or make thee a monument of the richest grace? What shall I do unto thee? Hearken therefore, thou town of Mansoul, hearken to my word, and thou shalt live. I am merciful, Mansoul, and thou shalt find me so ; shut me not out of thy gates, Canticles v. 2.

O Mansoul, neither is my commission or inclination at all to do thee hurt; why fliest thou so fast from thy friend, and stickest so close to thine enemy ? Indeed I would have thee, because it becomes thee, to be sorry for thy sin ; but do not despair of life, this great force is not to hurt thee, but to deliver thee from thy bondage, and to reduce thee to thy obedience. My commission indeed is to make war upon

Diabolus thy king, and upon all Diabolians with him ; for he is the

strong man armed that keeps the house, and I will have him out; his spoils I must divide, his armour I must take from him, his hold I must cast him out of, and must make it an habitation for myself. And this, O Mansoul, shall Diabolus know, when he shall be made to follow me in chains, and when Mansoul shall rejoice to see it too.

I could, would I now put forth my might, cause that forthwith he should leave you and depart; but I have it in my heart so to deal with him, as that the justice of the war that I shall make upon him, may be seen and acknowledged by all. He hath taken Mansoul by fraud, and keeps it by violence and deceit, and I will make him bare and naked in the eyes of all observers. All my words are true ; I am miglity to save, and will deliver my Mansoul out of his hand.

This speech was intended chiefly for Mansoul, but Mansoul would not have the hearing of it. They shut M

up

*

up Ear-gate, they barricado'd it up, they kept it locked and bolted, they set a guard thereat, and commanded that no Mansoalonian should go out to him,-nor that any from the camp should be admitted into the town : All this they did, go horribly had Diabolus inchanted them to do, and seek to do for him, against their rightful Lord and Prince. Wherefore no man, nor voice nor sound of man that belonged to the glorious host, was to come into the town.

Sowhen Emanuel saw that Mansoul was thus involved in sin, he called his army together (since now all his words were despised) and gave out a commandment throughout all his hosts, to be ready against the time appointed. Now forasmuch as there was no way lawfully to take the town of Mansoul, but to get in by the gates, and at Ear-gate as the chief, therefore he com manded his captains and commanders to bring their rams, their slings, and their men, and to place them at Eye-gate and at Ear-gate, in order to his taking the town.

When Emanuel had put all things in readiness to bid Diabolas battle, he sent again to know of the town of Mansoul, if in peaceable manner they would yield themselves ; or whether they were yet resolved to pre him to try the utmost extremity? They then, together with Diabolus the king, call a council of war, and resolved upon certain propositions that should be offered Emanuel, if he will accept thereof. So they agreed. And then the next was, who should be sent on this errand ? Now there was in the town of Mansoul, an old man, a Diabolian, and his name was Ms. Loth-to-stoop, a stiff man in his way, and a great doer for Diabolus ; him therefore they sent, and pat into his mouth what he should say. So he went, and came to the camp to Èmanuel, and when he was conte, a time was appointed to give him audience. So at the time he came, and af

ter

ter a Diabolian ceremony or two, he thus began adå ' said, (Tit. i. 16.) Great Sír, that it may be known unto all nen how good-natured a Prince my master is, he hath sent me to tell your Lordship, that he is very willing, rather than go to war, to deliver up

into

your ·bands one half of the town of Mansoul. I am therefore to know if your Mightiness will accept of this proposition.

Then said Emanuel, The whole is mine by gift and purchase, wherefore I will never lose one half.

Then said Mr. Loth-to-stoop, Sir, my master hatlı said that he will be content that you shall be the nominal and titular Lord of all, if he may possess but a part, Luke xiii. 25.

Then Emanuel answered, The whole is mine really, not in name and word only: wherefore I will be the sole Lord, and possessor of all, or of none at all, of Mansoul.

Then Mr. Loth-to-stoop said again, Sir, behold the icondescension of my master! he says that he will be content, if he may but have assigned to him some place in Mansoul, as a place to live privately in, and you

shall be Lord of all the rest, Acts v. 1 to 5.

Then said the golden Prince, All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and of all that he hath given me I will lose nothing, no not a hoof, nor a hair ; I will not therefore grant him, no not the least corner in Mansoul to dwell in, I will have all to myself.

Then Loth-to-stoop said again, But, Sir, suppose that my lord should resign the whole town to you, only with this proviso, that he sometimes when he comes into this country, may for old acquaintance sake, be entertained as a way-faring man for two days, or ten days, or a month, or so; may not this small matter be granted ?

Then said Emanuel, No: he came as a way-faring man to David, nor did he stay long with him, and yet it like to have cost David his soul, 2 Sam. xii, 1---5. I will not consent that he ever should have any harbour more there,

Then said Mr. Loth-to-stoop, Sir, you seem to be very hard. Suppose my master should yield to all your Lordship hath said, provided that his friends and kindred in Mansoul may have liberty to trade in the town, and to enjoy their present dwellings; may not that be granted, Šir?

Then said Emanuel, No; that is contrary to my Father's will, Rom. vi. 13, Col. iii. 5. Gal. v. 24. For all and all manner of Diabolians that now are, or that at any time shall be found in Mansoul shall not only lose their lands and liberties, but also their lives.

Then said Mr. Loth-to-stoop again, But, Sir, may not my master and great lord, by letters, by passengers, by accidental opportunities, and the like, maintain, if he shall deliver up all unto thee, some kind of old friendship with Mansoul? John X. 8.

Emanuel answered, No, by no means; for as much as any such fellowship, friendship, intimacy, or acquaintance in what way, sort, or mode soever maintained, will tend to the corrupting of Mapsoul, the alienating of their affections from me, and the endangering of their

peace with my Father. Mr. Loth-to-stoop yet added further, saying, But, Great Sir, since my master hath many friends, and those that are dear to him in Manscul, (Rom. vi. 12, 13.) may he not, if he depart from them, even of his bounty and good nature, bestow upon them, as he sees fit, some tokens of his love and kindness that he had for them, to the end that Mansoul, when he is gone, may look upon such tokens of kindness once received from their old friend, and remember him who was once their king, and the merry times that they sometimes enjoyed one with another, while he and they lived in peace together.

Then

Then said Emanuel, No; for if Mansoul come to be mine, I shall not admit of, nor consent that there should be the least scrap, shred, or dust of Diabolus left behind, as tokens or gifts bestowed upon any in Mansoul, thereby to call to remembrance the horrible communion that was betwixt them and him.

Will, Sir, said Mr. Loth-to-stoop, I have one thing more to propound, and then I am got to the end of my commission, 2 Kings, i. 1, 3, 6, 7. Suppose that when my Master is gone from Mansoul, any that yet shall live in the town, shall bave such business of high concerns to do, that if they be neglected, the party shall be undone ; and suppose, Sir, tbat nobody can bilp in that case so well as my Master and Lord; in ay not now my Master be sent for upun so urgent an occasion as this? Or if he may not be admitted into the town, may not be and the person iuncirmed, moet in some of the villag?s near Mansoul, and ibere by tbeir beads togetber, ant tbere consult together?

This was the last of those ensnaring propositions that Mr. Loth-to-stoop had to propound to Emanuel on behalf of his master Diabolus: but Emanuel would not grant it; for he said, there can be no case, or thing, or matter fall out in Mansoul, when thy Master shall be gone, that may not be solved by my Father, 1 Sam. xxviii. 15., Besi-les, ’lwill be a great disparagement to my Father's wisdom and skill, to admit any from Mansoul to go out to Diabolus for advice, when they are bid before, in every thing by prayer and supplication, to let their requests be made known to my Father, 2 Kings, i. 2,3. Further this, should it be granted, would be to grant that a door should be set open for Diabolus, and the Diabolians in Mansoul to hatch and plot, and bring to pass treasonable designs, to the grief of my Father and Me, and to the utter destruction of Mansoul.

When Mr. Loth-to-stoop had heard this answer, he took his leave of Emanuel and departed, saying, that he

would

« НазадПродовжити »