1813

Spirits in Prison

The following Communication given May 28, 1813.

The Spirit of Truth.

Therefore let no man marvel at Peter saying: I went to preach to the Spirits in Prison, that the dead might hear My voice and live;”(1 Peter iii. 19.) which meaneth to give them some comfort and consolation that I tasted death as well for the dead as the living, that they might have a living faith in Me—that in the end I should free them from the prison of death and sin, and from the power of Satans reign over them.

Therefore ye have nothing to marvel at, that I should go and comfort the dead who despaired of ever finding mercy. But as I tasted death for every man,—every man will have some benefit in My death at last.

Joanna Southcott.

[Extracted from Express Leaflet, No. 1. See also Small Still Voice, No. 24.]

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England to be the First Happy Land Before the End

Communication given to Joanna Southcott on July 12th, 1813, in a Letter to George Turner[1] of Leeds.

(From the Molineaux Collection of Unpublished MSS.)

Dear Friends,

I received your letter, but the answer that is given me concerning Mr. Brothers being called as a likeness of Adam is not in the manner you have judged it; for when the Lord bringeth in the Redemption of man, that they are restored to what Adam lost by the Fall, then there will be no one man alone that will be placed as a head over the rest, but all will be restored to that happiness God created man for at first.

The Spirit of Truth.

The meaning of Richard Brothers being compared to Adam is, that when he was deceived by the Devil, like Adam, he cast the blame upon his Maker, but not on the Author of Evil that deceived him. But when I permitted Satan to deceive thee concerning thy father,[2] thou hadst never a thought of casting it upon the Lord, but knew it was Satan that deceived thee with lies. This happened at the same time, for which reason I compared the likeness to Adam and Eve in the beginning; and know what I told thee of Turner—that I permitted Satan to deceive him concerning Brothers, to see if he would cast the blame on his Maker as Brothers did, saying the Lord had deceived him with lies. Therefore, let him not marvel he was deceived concerning Brothers, for I now tell thee, it is no honour to a man to be compared to the likeness of Adam in the Fall, and it was to the fall of Adam I compared Brothers.

But to come to the likeness of Adam in the Creation, I told thee all men must look to Me, who died for mankind—to restore them from the Fall, and bring men back to what they were created for at first.

Now I shall answer the thoughts of thy heart: Thou sayest within, if it be no honour for a man to be compared to Adam in the Fall, it can be no honour to be compared to Eve in the Fall. To thy thoughts I shall answer, it is no honour to thee to be compared to Eve in the Fall, and yet I tell thee from Eves casting the blame on her betrayer, the promise was made in the Fall: and now let men discern in what manner I ordered thee to contend with Satan, and what was My Answer to thy Dispute.[3] If ye had wisdom this to discern, then from the last ye may judge the first in what likeness it stands together, when I come to cast out the Betrayer.

 

Here I have given you the answer concerning Mr. Brothers.

With respect to your being called forward by the rulers, I have no other answer than what I sent you—to set your heart at rest as to being called forward as you supposed. Therefore I fear the enemy is at work, suggesting words to make you unhappy, and fill you with slavish fears, but I hope the Lord will strengthen you and support you through all these trials and temptations; and that you will come off more than conqueror through Him that hath loved you, and gave Himself for you, and enable you to see all the arts and subtlety of Satans working. For I think this is the evil that you were warned was going to burst upon you—the evil of Satans working—for I may say unto you as our Saviour said to Peter, Satan hath a desire to sift you as wheat;but I trust in the Lord to keep you, that your faith fail not though you may be foiled by some of Satans arts. If he cast you down, the Lord can raise you up, for I am jealous of Satans working concerning your being called forward.

I received a letter from Mr. Mackay, in which he humbly desired me to lay their pitiable cause before the Lord, that he is willing even to submit to endure the whole charge, the Lord supporting him, that his dear friends may be free. From his letter to me I see the reproof was in love given to one that would bear the reproof of the Lord, humbly desiring to know what was His righteous will concerning him. I wish all the believers may, in like manner, submit to the reproof, as you will see from the answer given me, it is a general reproof to many. I was answered as follows:—

The Spirit of Truth.

Strange judgments and strange opinions are drawn everywhere, and so there is discord among the believers, and a reproof to one is a reproof to all, that they may take care they do not stumble one the other, by drawing wrong and hasty judgments. But they must discern the greatness of the Warning—that it is to warn the End is at hand to destroy the works of the devil, and establish everlasting righteousness.

But that men may be convinced the Visitation is from the Lord, they must consider how many Signs were set in the Nations abroad as well as at home, not only of the Wars and Tumults, distresses and perplexities of Nations, but of Plague, Pestilence and Famine, to follow as Judgments from the Lord, to awaken the Nations. For this Calling and Warning must go to all Nations before the Redemption of Man will take place, for the Lord will be clear of the blood of all men before He cometh in Might, Majesty and Power to cut off those that would not that He should come and rule over them. Therefore so many signs were given, to open the blind eyes that did not discern the lesser, that they may be convinced by the greater; therefore men have erred in judgment—to think the Coming of the Lord would be so hastily for the sake of a few, before He had given time by the Warning, to have the Work run and increase and be made known amongst Mankind.

Lingering Judgments, I have already told thee, will bring in many, to awaken them in this Nation before the End: and therefore I have told thee, this will be the first happy land that will be freed of their burdens and sorrows before the final change takes place.

 

I am ordered to call to my remembrance the conduct of Law and Field, of Carpenter and Winter and many others, that came in, in the beginning. Better men than they, must have been destroyed if the Lord had acted according to their judgment, and to what purpose would the warning have been, if time was allowed for a few only? Where would have been the Wisdom and Justice of God, to give the Warning at all? Then men could plead they had never heard it. Therefore it is the Wisdom of the Lord to give time for men to hear the Warning—that they may judge for themselves, and not to strike as soon as He threatens; therefore we must tarry the Lord’s leisure.

This is the Answer given to me to send to Mr. Mackay, of which I have sent a copy to you.

I was very much distressed in hearing the account concerning the Seals being sold by Mr. Middleton, but I was answered:—If the Lord was to tell me which told the lie, the other would give the Spirit the lie, so that no knowledge of the truth would be gained that way; but if Mr. Middleton received any money for his trouble for filling up the Seals and delivering them, then he is entirely cut off from having anything to do in the work for the future, because he sinned knowingly—that no money at all should be taken for the Seals, and those who would not willingly take the trouble to do it freely, are not to deliver them at all. On the other hand, if the man gave any money for his Seal, and that of his sister, they would be of no use to them, but a curse instead of a blessing, if he does not now deliver up both his Seal and his sisters, for each of which he says he paid Mr. Middleton a sixpence. He must deliver up both the Seals, and the money must be returned to him. This is ordered to be done by command of the Lord, and I am further answered:—They know not the meaning of the Sealing, how it was ordered from the first, to be a free Gift—given without money or price; therefore he that buyeth a Seal is in a great sin, but he that selleth one is in a greater; and therefore no Sealing will be permitted until the Sin on both sides is publicly made known—how great is the sin to buy a Seal.

If the man, however, refuses to return the Seal and have his money back again, now he is warned, it is a Sin to keep it, as he says he bought it, which prevents its being any gift at all. So that if he do not now return it, he is guilty of telling the lie, because he will prove himself hardened in sin by breaking the Command, if he does not return it, as ordered. But if he say he will receive the money back and keep the Seal, I am answered that he must not do so, for no Seal that was ever purchased with money must be kept, and therefore I must beg that the Seals be demanded from Mr. Millar and his sister-in-law, Mrs. Walker, by the first believer that goes to York, either yourself, Mr. Hirst, or Mr. Senior. You must let them know how strict the Command is given that no Seal that has ever been purchased must be kept, but must be returned, and the money returned again—and the Seal must be destroyed.

We are very happy to hear the account you give us of your journeys and the manner you found the friends. Our united, kind Christian love attend yourself, Mr. Hirst, Mr. Senior, and all the friends.

I remain,

Your sincere Friend in the Work of the Lord,

Joanna Southcott.

 

P.S. I have just received your letter by this days post and can only say that if your Communication is right, I must be wrong, for I am answered again, the same as before, that no established peace will yet be made[4]—therefore one of us must be wrong. I must leave it to time to prove it.

[Extracted from Southcott Express, No. 8.]

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On the Selling of Seals

Extract from a Letter to Mr. George Turner.

Dear Friend,

I received a letter from Mr. Senior, and I will thank you to inform him that I greatly approve of his conduct to find out the truth concerning the seal, for Mr. Middletons conduct proves him to be guilty, and I am sorry to find that he has acted like Gehazi, the servant of Elisha, to receive money when he was forbidden, therefore he can never more be trusted in the work to have anything committed to his care, either as a teacher or preacher. His saying he would not own to receiving the shilling for the seals unless the Lord said he had received it, as he did not recollect it, there wanted no recollection in a case like this; if he had determined to act conscientiously, as he was ordered never to take anything, he would have come forward to Mr. Mellors boldly, and said he never did take a farthing of anyone in his life, but it seems he could not tell the man. So, therefore said he did not recollect it. Now, was any to say that you, Mr. Hirst, or Mr. Senior, had taken any sum for the seal, or for filling it up and sealing it, what recollection would either of you want to answer such a charge? If Mr. Middleton has any feeling at all in the work, what must his feeling have been to see the seals torn in pieces before his face for his making a merchandise of it? Mr. Senior did very right in what he did, as such a thing as this cannot be too strongly resisted; and I am in hopes there are no more sold, as there were no others come forward. I shall send you a communication given to me July 18, 1813, in answer to those who stumble at the sealing, and a law being made against Satan.

[Extracted from Had They Had Knowledge, p. 176. See the following Communication that is referred to.]

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The Law Against Satan

A Communication given to Joanna Southcott on July 18, 1813, in answer to those who stumble at the Sealing—and a Law being made against Satan—by bounds being fixed for him—as bounds were fixed for man by the command in the beginning; for which some people contend that there is no Scripture proof.

The Spirit of Truth.

I shall bring the Scriptures to thy view, to make this clear to mankind, that they may understand why a law was first made for man, who was condemned for breaking that law—because it was by the law sin was imputed to him. Now come to the words of Paul, (2 Cor. xi. 14.) “Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

I shall answer thee from Pauls words:—If Satan be transformed as an angel of light, all men must know he hath that light in him to discern from the Scriptures that sin cannot be imputed to him, to have his power cut off before a law is made against him. Now come to the beginning—The law was made to man by the commandment that was given to him—which Satan, by arts, tempted him to break; and for his arts the curse was then made against him. Now come to My Gospel. Did not Satan come with the law when he pleaded Scripture to Me, to say, It was written He should give His angels charge over thee, to keep thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone?Here men must discern from My Gospel how Satan came forward as an angel of light with a knowledge of the Scriptures, and pleading these Scriptures—and from this men must discern how strong he would have the Scriptures to plead that no sin could be imputed to him for his temptations, if no law was made against him. Therefore let no man marvel that I ordered thee to contend with him, and from his own disputes, brought the law against him.

And now I shall come to the texts of Scripture that thou hast brought forward, (2 Thess. ii. 6, 7.) “Now ye know what withholdeth, that he might be revealed in his time.But was it revealed in the days of the Apostles, in what manner it should be revealed, that a law should be made against him? Look to the Gospel and see his pleading:—how great was his power that he said was delivered unto him!—power to tempt and power to destroy the peace and happiness of mankind! and power to destroy the glory of God amongst mankind that the Scriptures cannot be fulfilled—for all the earth to praise the Lord—or all the earth to worship Him—before the power of Satan is taken away. For he is the Mystery of Iniquity—that now letteth, and will let, until he be taken out of the way.

But I ask thee, how mankind will explain the text—that the wicked shall be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the Spirit of his mouth? What is meant by the Spirit of His mouth? Is it not a law that is given against him, as a law was given against man, by the Spirit of his mouth, given to the Prophet? This is the meaning of the first. But when the law is put in execution against him, as it is against man, then will be the Coming of the Lord, to destroy with the brightness of His Coming that great power and great glory which Satan boasted of, when I became flesh and dwelt with man—and died for the transgression of man. And know what I said in My Gospel—“The strong man armed must first be bound by one stronger to overcome him; and take from him all his armour wherein he trusted.This let men discern in the Gospel what I said of the binding of Satan. Then let men discern My wisdom in permitting thy dispute, and what was his armour in which he trusted. And therefore his binding is first by the law. (Rom. v. 13.) For sin was in the world, by the Devil and fallen angels, who were cast out of Heaven before men were created. But, then by the commandment the law was given to man, and he suffered for breaking the law. But, as no law was then made against the enemy, he could not come under the curse that was pronounced against him, to be cast out as man: and therefore the Scriptures would be his pleading, that sin could not be imputed as a transgression, when there was no law made against him; and therefore the law worketh wrath; first, against man, for breaking the command. Then let all men know there must be a law to work wrath against the author of evil, that is at enmity against God and man. Ye may discern from Satans pleading in the beginning, that it was by arts he pleaded with the woman. He did not come to condemn her Creator, for giving the law and commandment:—but let men discern in what manner he turned the words, Ye shall not surely die: for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as Gods, knowing good from evil.This discern he pleaded from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

And so, in like manner, was his pleading against Job—“Doth Job fear God for nought? Hast thou not made an hedge about him, and about all that he hath on every side? Thou hast blessed the work of his hand, and his substance has increased in the land. But put forth thy hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face.Here Satan pleaded from Scripture, knowing the blessings and promises made to men for their obedience, and which he pleaded Job possessed, that he worshipped the Lord for what He bestowed upon him. But let that be removed, was Satans pleading—then he would see Jobs disobedience and rebellion against the Lord. Therefore, by arts was his pleading there, for mens obtaining temporal blessings, which he pleaded from the Scriptures. And from the Scriptures he pleaded in My Gospel.

And now from the words of Paul, there would be room for Satan to plead:—“Where no law is, there can be no transgression.Then how shall the God of Heaven bruise Satans head under your feet, without a law that worketh wrath to bring him into condemnation, like man.

And this is the law, which is holy, just, and true, to make the law in the end against the tempter of mankind, to fulfil the curse pronounced at first. And here he may say with man, was that which is good made death unto me, when he tempted the woman to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil?

Did not evil come to man, at first, to die for his transgression? But was not the good pronounced in the end, to bring death upon her betrayer, and to cut off his power amongst mankind? Now, that sin might appear sin by the tempter, it must be by the commandment, that it might become exceeding sinful against the tempter. And therefore men must be labourers together with God, or how will men become Gods husbandry, or His builders? Ye know that the husbandman prepares the ground, then sows the seed, which is the Word of God—but the increase cometh from the Lord: and the commandment cometh from Him. Therefore if men wish to enjoy the fruits of the harvest, which is promised in the end, they must be workers together with God, to begin the building the Lord hath promised to complete. For the god of this world hath blinded the eyes of those that believe not, lest the light of the glorious Gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. The light of the glory of the Gospel is the end and fulfilment thereof, when the Lord comes to make an end of sin.

Here discern the words of the Apostle, to wit, that God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself. But is the world yet reconciled? Is the transgression of man done away, that no sin is now imputed to man? This ye know is not fulfilled, neither can the word of reconciliation be given between God and man before the author of evil hath a law made against him—that transgressions are imputed to him. Let men discern the depth of the Apostles words; We are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us; we pray you in Christs stead, be ye reconciled unto God.Here let men discern the words and the manner they are spoken by the Apostles which stand for the end.

But what word of reconciliation between God and man, to reconcile the whole unto God, was there brought forward in the days of His Disciples? But now the word of reconciliation is given—the way and manner God will be reconciled unto man, by pleading the promise made to man; by looking deeply into the Gospel, clearly to discern for what Christ died; and by discerning when a new covenant is made with man, he must be a worker with God. And discern from the Gospel in what manner the law must turn against the enemy of God and man. And when the eyes of mens understandings are clearly opened to discern this—then their faith will be strengthened, and the weapons of their warfare will be mighty, through God, to the pulling down the strong-holds that are of Satans power, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God. Therefore, it is written, having a readiness to revenge all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.

And now the obedience of man is tried, and the Scriptures thrown open to your view, how the words of the Apostle shall be fulfilled. That the Father sent the son to be the Saviour of the world;and herein will mens love be made perfect, if they are perfect in faith, that what I have said I shall fulfil—and perfect in love towards God and man, wishing all to be reconciled unto God. Then they will have boldness in the day of judgment, when I come to destroy the works of the devil, and put the law in force against him. But this perfection will never be in men before the eyes of their understandings be opened, clearly to discern from the Scriptures, how a law must be made against the Prince of this World—before he can be judged—or cast out; for the Prince of this World is the Devil, who boasted of his greatness and power in My Gospel, and therefore I told My Disciples he must be judged. But I had many things to tell them they could not bear then[5]—which I have already told thee why they could not bear the knowledge of these truths; because the time was not then come for Me to put My decrees in execution. But I told them the Spirit of Truth must come to guide them into all truths. But when was the age that all these truths were revealed? all these mysteries explained—and the Bible thrown open to your view, that ye may be led into all the truths of the Scriptures, and the knowledge of them how they will be fulfilled? But how can they be explained by man? God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” (John iii. 17.) This no man can prove to be true, if My Gospel be not fulfilled. Look to the preachers of the Gospel. Does not everyone condemn the other? And does not the world, through unbelief, now stand under condemnation? I tell thee, men do, by the invisible pleadings of Satan, as well as the visible pleadings of men. Therefore all the old things must be done away, and the old serpent, with all his deeds; and man must be made anew in Me. And then will the Scriptures be fulfilled.

Now come to the words of the prophet (Nahum i. 15), “Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings—that publisheth peace. Oh, Judah, keep thy solemn feasts; perform thy vows; for the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off.Let men discern from My Gospel how the good tidings were brought down to men, when the angels appeared to them when they were feeding their flocks by night; and announced, Peace on earth and good-will to men!This warning was given what I was born for, before I come to show My power, in fulfilling their words, to prove Myself the Son of God: that I came to seek and to save that which was lost. But let men discern, when the good tidings were brought, they were not fulfilled that the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off.But this I said, I come to accomplish in the end, to take away the sin of the world; to cast out the Prince of this world, and to draw all men after Me. This stands on record; that I shall do at My Second Coming: to bring the Redemption of man. Then will death be swallowed up in victory, and tears wiped from all faces: when the rebuke of My people shall be taken away from off all the earth. (Isaiah xxv. 8–11.) Satan is not only the tempter of mankind, but he is the condemner of mankind—that they are breaking the laws of God and man. For though he is the sin of the world, yet he condemneth sin in man. Therefore I came to take away the sin of the world. Therefore it is said by the prophet (Haggai ii. 6, 7, 8.) “I will shake the heavens and the earth, and the sea, and the dry land; and I will shake all nations; and the desire of all nations shall come.But how weak is the judgment of mankind to suppose this could have been fulfilled when I became flesh, and dwelt amongst mankind! Had all nations a knowledge of a Messiah? Had all nations a knowledge of a Saviour? Had all nations a knowledge of the prophets to believe in them, or looking for My Coming—either in power, as a Prince or a Saviour—to come and die for the transgressions of man?

This knowledge was not in all nations. Then how could I be the desire of all nations? But men do not discern, and therefore My Gospel is wrested by professors thereof, because they do not compare My Gospel with the prophets.

But now, I have told thee, is the time I shall go on to shake all nations, and make My coming known among the nations. And now I tell thee, among all nations this desire will be in some. Then they will find I shall come in power to fill mankind with my glory; and then will the language of mens hearts be like the words of the prophet (Micah vii. 18, 19.) “Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? He keepeth not His anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy. He will turn again; he will have compassion.Now the heritage of the Lord is men, whom he will have compassion upon, and will cast all their sin in the depth of the sea, because when men repent and turn unto the Lord, then their sins will be pardoned, and the Author of sin be cast off, as one that is cast into the great deep.

Now come to the promises made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, (Gen. xxii.) and discern how the promise is made through faith and obedience to Abraham.

But discern the greatness of the promise, I will multiply thy seed as the stars of Heaven, and as the sand upon the sea shore.But now, I ask thee, where is the seed of faith that has been multiplied according to the promise? And how are all nations blessed through faith? This is not yet accomplished; neither by the wisdom of man can the text be explained. Thy seed shall possess the gates of his enemies—In thy seed shall the families of the earth be blessed.Here let men discern what they read. Can all nations of the earth be blessed while they have temporal enemies to encounter? Then some nations must be enemies that his blessings cannot rest upon, if it be placed according to the wisdom of men.

But now come to the words of the Psalm, “The Lord said unto my Lord: sit thou at my right hand, till I make thy enemies thy footstool.

Then cometh the fulfilment of the promise to Isaac and Jacob, (Gen. xxvi. 4.) “In thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed,because the enemy there mentioned to be destroyed, to bring in these blessings to mankind—is the Spiritual Enemy, the root of evil—that is to be cut off; then the branches will die with it. Therefore men must discern in what manner the promise stands; and how I became flesh and blood to dwell with men, to be called the seed, according to the flesh, that the promise made to Abraham and Isaac, for all nations—should be fulfilled in the end.

And this blessing I shall fulfil when I come in power, to make My enemies and the enemies of mankind to be trodden under foot, and possess the power that Satan hath now got—to rule and reign in the hearts of men, for this is the meaning of possessing the gates of the enemy.

But let men closely discern, that when this blessing comes to all nations, they will have no temporal enemy to encounter; because the Spiritual enemy shall be destroyed.

And this is set before mankind—blessings and cursings, to fulfil the curse pronounced upon him, (the serpent) at first, and to restore life to man, who now returns unto Me, to choose life that he may live in My favour, and in My fear. (Deut. xxx. 19, 20.)

Here I have shown thee from the Scriptures, what the end will be when I come to fulfil them; and let them discern, man is now put to his choice.

[Extracted from Two Witnesses, No. 25. See also Had They Had Knowledge, p. 20, and Small Still Voice, No. 7.]

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A Circular Letter to the Bishops

Sept. 27, 1813.

‘My Lord,

I have no doubt, but your Lordship has heard of my name, though it be in mockery and ridicule; but I must beg your Lordship will take the pains of perusing over this book, which I am ordered to send; that your Lordship may judge for yourself.

In the year 1792, I was warned of what was coming upon the whole earth. In 1801, I published to the world of the events that have since taken place. But on Sunday morning, the 12th instant, I was awakened with a powerful visitation from the Lord, and my former prophecies were repeated through me, that are printed again in this book: and I felt great power of the Spirit, both by love and anger, assuring me they shall now be fulfilled, one way or the other; as men obey or disobey; for the Lord will either heighten the judgments, and make the burden heavier, or turn our afflictions into blessings.

The promises of the Lord to this nation; if they awaken to see the days of their visitation, your Lordship will see in the 59th page. But the threatenings if men now mock, begins at the bottom of the 60th page:—“If by the wise men I am mocked now.The Sermon mentioned in the 63rd page, was preached by the Rev. Mr. Pomeroy, to which answer was given: Let Pomeroy bring his fifty men.And now I am ordered to put this prophecy into your Lordships hands. That will prove whether my visitation is from the Lord or not, which is given me concerning the Rev. Mr. Pomeroy, vicar of St. Kew, Bodmin, mentioned in this book;[6] where the dots stand.

After my writings were published to the world, and Mr. Pomeroys name appeared, he was greatly persecuted by the Clergy for receiving my writings. He was persuaded to burn those in his possession: and, from the mockery and ridicule he met with, he was so much hurt, that he advertised upon the paper, that he had told me my writings were from the Devil, which caused a great contention between him and me; by letters at first. But I have not written to him, or heard any thing from him these last nine years; when this powerful visitation came to me, to give the warning that my prophecies should now be put in execution.

I was answered:—The Lord would now convince Mr. Pomeroy, and work so powerfully upon his heart, that he should be truly convinced the calling is of God: that he will reflect upon his past conduct of destroying my writings, and what he put in the Paper; that he will say with David, Through every watch of tedious night, Thou keepest mine eyes awake: my grief is swoln to that excess, I sigh, but cannot speak. I am ashamed, yea, even confounded, because that I bear the reproach of my youth.Which I am answered, he will say it was a shame and reproach to him to say my writings were from the Devil. But now the language of his heart will be like the words in the 50th page of this book:[7]I yield, I yield; I can hold out no more.

This, I am answered, will be the language of the Rev. Mr. Pomeroys heart.

The visitation has continued in a very powerful manner to me every day since the 12th instant; revealing fresh knowledge to me every day, filling me with that Heavenly joy that cannot be described.

Now, my Lord, as some say, that I am an impostor; others say, my visitation is from the Devil, as an Angel of Light, and a false fire that is kindled; others say it is of God. So that I am determined, if it be a false fire, from the Devil, to let it go out. But if it be a fire kindled by the love of God, then it shall kindle to a flame,—as I am promised it will, if I go on as I am directed. And now, my Lord, I say, with Paul, I stand at the Rev. Mr. Pomeroys judgment seat, where I ought to be judged.And if he will judge it comes from the Devil, I will give up my cause: for then my writings cannot be from the Lord, who hath the hearts of all men in his hands, and can turn them as the rivers of water. And the Lord has promised to work so strong in Mr. Pomeroys heart, to open the eyes of his understanding,—that in seeing, he shall see aright;—in hearing, he shall hear aright; and in judging, he shall judge aright: for the Lord hath promised to make him a just judge for me. And, as all other Ministers I wrote to, treated my letter with scorn and contempt, the Lord has now laid his strict command upon me, not to put my foot out of my own house, before I have received my sentence from Mr. Pomeroy.

I remain,

                        Your Lordship’s

                                                Most humble Servant,

‘Joanna Southcott.’

[Extracted from Small Still Voice, No. 1.]

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To the Rev. T. P. Foley

London, October 18th, 1813.

Rev. Sir,

The following letter was ordered by the Spirit to be sent to Mrs. Taylor of Exeter. And this Morning directions are given, that a Copy must be sent to you, and which begins as follows:—

 

Dear Mrs. Taylor,

What Various scenes and changes of life, have My strange Effects of faith brought me to. You know the Manner of My Situation in Exeter was mean and low; that I worked early and late, to support myself and go on with my writings, that I often experienced hunger and want. But I was answered in 1801, that was the last year I should ever know what Poverty was, and I bless the Lord from my inmost soul from what I have experienced of the truth of the words. For the Lord hath blessed me in my Basket; he hath blessed me in my store; he hath blessed me in my going out, he hath blessed me in My coming in; he hath blessed me in my body; he hath blessed me in my Soul; he hath sent me every blessing Spiritual and temporal; he hath made the Barren Womb to keep house, and to be the Joyful Mother of Children. And by the faith the Lord hath given me I am become like the Centurion (Matt. 8th Ch.) for I am under the authority of the Lord, having soldiers under me, and I say to this Man go and he goeth, and to another come and he cometh, and to My Servant do this and they do it. The believers are called as Spiritual Soldiers, and this is called a Spiritual fight, and the Lord hath brought me to what the Centurion was; when Jesus heard it he Marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, No not in Israel; and I believe there never was greater faith upon the earth than what the Lord hath now placed in me, or I should find it impossible to go through the awful Trial, I have now to go through. Mine Might well be called an awful Trial, which I feel Nature to shudder at. You will be ready to enquire, what new scenes are now coming that My Strange Effects of faith hath brought me to? I must inform you, that from the 12th day of September, 1813 to this day, I am awaked every Morning between 3 and 4 oclock, and get up when the day breaks, and come down into the dining Room, by Myself, and feel as though I was surrounded by Angels, or heavenly Spirits. One morning I was ordered to prepare New clothing, for the sake of My female Friends, that my sands were nearly run, and the time of My departure drew near. This I judged to be in death, therefore I made My Will, and said I would have Twelve handsome New Gowns, and a Plenty of every thing, that I might give tokens of love to My friends, that had been kind to me. I sent out immediately, and set the Mantua Maker to work. After this I was ordered to have Seven Friends to meet at My house On Thursday, September 23rd, 1813, to hear read what had been revealed to me, and which was to be sealed up (Messrs Sharp, Owen, Hows, the two Turpins, Mr. Carder the Army Clothier, and Mr. Tolhurst). They were all ordered to meet again, on the Monday following (September 27th, 1813). On that day I had a Communication given me, that My New clothing was for My Wedding Garments, that My sands of Sorrow were nearly run out, and that My departure from My own house, drew near, that an earthly union Must take place to Make My writings true.

Here you may judge of My shock, and surprise, when I only looked upon My being called the Bride, to be but a name given; the same as our Saviour says, My Brother and My Sister, and My Mother; but never had an Idea, that I must be a Bride, or that it had any temporal Meaning at all, and therefore when the enquiry was made of me, in 1802 in the eighth Book Strange Effects of Faith whether I would choose an Earthly Inheritance or a Heavenly one, My choice was a Heavenly one; So that I had never the least Idea of being Married, and all the Believers Judged the same, for which reason they would have thought it a Sin for any one to have proposed to me. But when I was now answered, a Marriage union must take place, I was answered the other was done to prevent any Man from making me an offer of Marriage, because the Man that I am to have was decreed by the Lord. And the Name of the Man that is given to me is Noah, Not Noah Bishop—One of the Name, but not the Same; and then I was ordered to call to My remembrance what is Sealed up in My Writings, when I had went through the work, the Lord had for me to do in a single life then I should be married, and then it is said

 

Unto thy Husband Ill resign the whole.

 

But this I thought was done away by My request, to have a Heavenly Inheritance, in preference to an earthly one. But now I am answered, all the sorrows that I have went through, to obey the Commands of the Lord, and to be clear in judging, that My Visitation was from the Lord, If I now shudder at Marriage to go back, and did not obey, all that I had done, would come to Nothing, for that was the end of My Visitation, to bring the Woman in Perfect obedience to the Commands of the Lord, and then to give her in Marriage to Man, Strange Effects of Faith, 46th page.

 

Then all will be as Wise as She,

Or yet as Simple here,

For Wives alike you all shall be,

The Marriage I shall clear.

 

Page 109th.

 

A People simple and unwise;

Vain are your thoughts for to despise

A God that gave the Woman first;

I am, I am, too gave her last;

By her obedience freed the Score,

Her faith is Just if Man sees clear.

 

Here My Writings were pointed out to me through in Various places, which you may now see through the Books, and that no Adams Wonder could begin or end with Man, without a marriage union taking Place; for he that hath the Bride is the Bridegroom, and the Friends of the Bridegroom will rejoice greatly when they see by this Union, all My inveterate foes and enemies put to shame and confusion, and My writings proved to be so clear from the Lord, that there will be no room left for Man to doubt, from whence My Visitation came; they will know it is the Lords doing, and marvellous in their eyes, when the Marriage is granted, to be a thing brought round by the Lord, because the Man that I am told of to be the Bridegroom, is ignorant of this direction,—A Man I never thought of having in My life, never such a thought entered My head and A man that never one word of love ever passed between him and me in our lives. Here you May Judge what must be My feelings, when ordered to be Married by directions, to a man that hath never gained My affections; and when you consider My Age (Sixty four) and the Power and authority the Lord hath placed me in and to be ordered to give up that authority, to one that I have no regard for, nor he for me, as love for a Marriage Union—this went as a dagger to My heart, and My friends came the day it was revealed to me. They all seemed to feel for me, but was soon convinced I could not be the Bride without the Bridegroom. Then it was called to My remembrance how it was called My awful trial, and awful I have felt it; for I told My friends I would not enter into a Marriage Union at this time of day, if any one would give me a Million of Money, but as it was a Command I would not disobey for the world. Then it was called to My remembrance, how men were daily wounding My friends, by the Malice of the devil, working in the hearts of Men, to invent all Manner of lies against My character, to rob me of My honour, innocence and Virtue which I have prevented from My youth up to this day. But the devil hath been working in the hearts of men by every invention of wicked and malicious lies, both published and printed; Saying I have been a harlot, that I have had Seven base children, brought up by the Parish, and Various children besides; and the Most infamous book that was put out in London, when My Friends applied to an attorney, and he had a Counsellors opinion. The Counsellor said, it was no use to bring it into court, for the cause would be Viewed by the Judge and Jury with Prejudice; for though the Book was libellous and indictable, yet it would be looked upon to be done in order to put away the Prophecies, as all fanaticism, and therefore he said it was no use to go to law, for I should only get mere Nominal damages, and My character no more cleared than it was before.

This enraged My friends exceedingly, that no redress could be obtained, for these injurious attacks upon My character, and from these invented lies My friends are often insulted on My account. This made me think with Monmouth—Oh, the hearts of My poor Soldiers, how could they endure to die—for I must say in a temporal sense, My friends do come forward like Soldiers, to fight with the Spiritual Sword, while on the other hand My enemies come forward with all Manner of lying inventions, like Swords and darts to Wound My friends, which cuts me to the Very Soul, to see My own honour traduced by the Malicious Malice of Men and devils; that I thought with myself, I would sooner die a Martyr for the sake of My friends, and to obey the commands of the Lord, than to live on the earth, and be thus tormented, with what I must say comes from the Sons of hell, who have made lies their refuge, and under falsehood to hide themselves. But all this I am answered would be put a stop to by a Marriage Union, for that is the way he would confound the whole, to prove My innocence and their lies. That is the way the Lord said, I shall shame them that shamed thee, and confound all them that confounded thee, that no weapon that is formed against thee, Shall prosper,

 

For then the hellish rage of Man is spent,

Their fury can no further hell invent,

These cursd tormentors then their rage is gone,

Because these floods of lies no more can come,

Theyll find thy Husband will thee so protect,

And to thy writings Now Ill call thee back.

 

Here follows a quotation, beginning with the following line

 

A Challenge send, mark what thoust penn’d

 

from the 42nd page 1st Book of Sealed Prophecies, and ending with the conclusion of that Communication in the 43rd page.

The Meaning of Saying—have I no second in the pit to bear my armour there, it is an enquiry made by the Lord whether no man will come forward as a Bridegroom to free the Bride, to prove all these inventions were false and that it was a thing brought round by the decrees of heaven, to shew the fulfilment of the Revelations, that this is a marriage Must be granted, to be from the Lord to convince Mankind the end is at hand, and this is what I am answered will awaken the Nations to say

 

Oh happy England, though we see thy rod

We know thy King in Power is now thy God.

 

For I am now answered, the Marvellous Manner the Lord is working this round, will convince Thousands of Deists, Atheists and the Jews; and the Bible which men have burnt, because they see no fulfilment of the Bible, and the professors of religion have been ignorantly preaching, Saying all was finished, and there would be no more fulfilment, have made the Bible become as a dead letter to Man. And now the way the Lord is bringing round this, is to fulfil the 31st Ch. of Jeremiah, 22nd V. For the Lord hath created a new thing in the earth, A Woman shall compass a Man.And this all will see in the end is the Lords doing; yet men say it is my own doing; but let them say which way they will, it is very little consequence to me, because I am Promised, by My perfect obedience, the Lord will now fulfil this Chapter (Jeremiah 31st) then what a Glorious change will it be to England, and the Nations May well Say, What Wonders do in England burst.[8] I wish you to Weigh the Chapter through, because this Chapter I am answered will now be fulfilled; and the Jews will now be awakened, when they come to the knowledge of all these things, which will bring them to believe in the Gospel, and convince them of all their errors; which Gentlemen are now giving thousands of Pounds to a Preacher here in London, to convince the Jews, and giving them Money to put them in business for their pretence of being converted, and they only do it to get the Money, and then return to their Synagogues again, and laugh at them; therefore the Ways of men will never convince them, it must be done by a power Superior to Man’s Wisdom.

And now I shall mention a Particular circumstance, which happened to me last Thursday Night, October 14th, 1813. I was ordered not to go to bed till past 12 oclock, but to sit up in the room by Myself, and Shut myself in. Many extraordinary things were revealed to me, why Christ took mans Nature upon him. I was sat upon the Sofa, and the candle was upon the Table. About 12 oclock I looked at the candle, and there appeared some thing like a Large Bowl behind it, with a Point towards the candle. The candle was flaming very bright, and there appeared a Ring as red as scarlet, round the Middle of the light. There appeared a hand as white as snow, which seemed to come from behind the candle, beside the Bowl, and pointed towards me. At first I trembled to see it, but was Immediately answered Fear not, it is I.I was then ordered to put on My Glasses and the hand appeared again the second time, more brilliant than the first, as the flame seemed divided, and burning up in two branches in a manner I cannot describe, yet the ring remained. I saw distinctly a red cuff upon the wrist, and the fingers was held out as if the hand was open, and pointed towards me both times; which was afterwards explained to me, but that you will see another time.

I told you in the last how I was confined, and am not to see man, Woman or child, only Mr. Pomeroy, or any of the Bishops; and no letter must be sent to me whatever, and if any of the ministers that are Strangers write to me, I must neither hear them read nor any answer be returned.

This letter you are at liberty to shew any of the Bishops, if they should send for you, or to any of the Ministers who may make an enquiry; and you may read it to the Believers, for my Book is already printed that announces the Marriage, so it will not be long a secret, as I am ordered to send a Circular letter to apprise the friends of it. But I suppose you will be ready to say, I must be beside myself, or mad, to publish to the world that I am going to be married, and at the same time prove that no man upon earth, have made me an offer, neither have I entered into agreement with any Man: What Strange Effects of faith is this? I answer, Look to the 22nd Ch. of Genesis, 7th and 8th Verses: And Isaac Spake unto Abraham his Father, and said, My Father. And he Said here am I My Son. And he said, behold the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? And Abraham said, My Son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering. And so they went both together.This was Abrahams faith, and this is Mine, So whether in My senses or out of them, time will determine. You may ask, how I can be so confident, that Mr. Pomeroy will come forward to clear up My Writings, and be a Judge for me? To this I answer, I put no confidence in Mr. Pomeroy as a man, My trust is in the Lord, who hath the hearts of all men in his hands and can turn them as the rivers of Water.

I hope you did not grieve yourself about My last letter as no anger was designed to you, only to shew how the anger of the Lord would break out, if the Bishops took no Notice of the Books and letters that are sent them. They have seen what hath taken place since they were warned in 1804, and Now let them beware of the third time, for this is the third time [9] they have been Warned. But I am answered, if they reject this Warning, they shall be warned No More, but by death.

And now it is time for all, who call themselves believers, to put off the old Man with all his deeds, and put on the New. In the 50th Ch. of Isaiah, 1–5 verses, also the 51st Ch. of Isaiah, from the 14th verse to the end, you will see the reasons why I am confined from every one, because if I permit the Just, I must the unjust, and I hope the living will lay it to heart.

Now I must conclude with our united kind christian love to yourself, Mrs. Foley, and Family.

I remain your sincere Friend in the work of the Lord

from Joanna Southcott

 

The contents of this letter taken from Joanna Southcotts mouth by me, Ann Underwood.

Witness Jane Townley.

[Printed from a MS. copy.]

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A Letter From the Rev. T. P. Foley

From the Stourbridge and Dudley Messengerof October 29th, 1813. The Rev. T. P. Foleys Letter of Warning to the Bishops and to the Nation.

JOANNA SOUTHCOTT’S PROPHECIES.

A Warning to those who will receive it.

Having lately received orders from Joanna Southcott, to write to the Bishops when she sent me her last Book called The Book of Wonders, Marvellous and True[10]—and having written to her two letters since (being much engaged in other things) without even noticing the Book, or making any observations on her present Visitation, she sent me, very justly, the following severe reproof. When she heard my letters read, and found I had taken no notice whatever of the Book, or passed any judgment on the promised blessings if the Bishops attend to what has been sent to them; or to the threatenings if they do not, her anger rose in fury and she said,—If the Bishops and Mr. Pomeroy took no more notice of the Book than I had done; and were as indifferent about all as I had been in the above letters, she might be confined to her room for a twelvemonth without being permitted to see one friend, till fatal judgments would be brought upon this Land; for she is forbidden by the Spirit which directs her, to see man, woman or child till her Awful Trial takes place, except the Bishops and the Rev. Mr. Pomeroy, and the Women that are in the house. None of her friends must come near her.

Now she says,—“If the Bishops remain as silent regarding what has been sent them as you have been concerning the Book, then the Lord will bring upon the Land all the threatened Judgments in such a manner that nothing can save them but attending to the Visitation. If happily they should awaken to search out the truth, then the blessings will flow upon us from the Fountain of All Good, and the Judgments will pass away.

I firmly believe that Life and Death are now set before us. Oh, may we choose Life, and live!

Thos. P. Foley.

Old Swinford, Oct. 26th, 1813.

[Extracted from Southcott Express, No. 4.]

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Wisdom Excels the Weapons of War

Ms. November 20, 1813.

Dear Friend,

I have sent you a communication given to me last Saturday morning, November 20th. I was ordered to put down the following text of Scripture, Eccles. 9:18. Wisdom excelleth the weapons of war.

The Spirit of Truth.

I shall answer thee why wisdom excelleth the weapons of war. Because this, the wisdom brought round by me to bring out the Scriptures to mankind, and to shew them, from the fulfilment of the Revelations, the end is at hand; and therefore I tell thee, when men see the Revelations fulfilled by the wonders appearing in the woman here in England, and how the great blessings are promised here, the French nation will be convinced from the Revelations that they are worshipping the beast whom the curse is promised against, (Jer. 49:13) and then their hearts will fail them, their courage will fail them, for when the nations hath acknowledged thee to be the Bride mentioned in the Revelations they will see what their conqueror is. (Rev. 19:19, 20). I shall answer thee from this chapter. When men raise thee up, then the beast will be cast down, which I have told thee is Buonaparte, and it is by miracles wrought from the devil that his false prophets have led them on. I do not tell thee false prophets that have told him no truth, for now, I tell thee, Satan knows of things that are present before him, and therefore, in many things he can lead them on in a straight line. But wisdom is not in the devil to lead men in bye-paths, at last to have his wisdom shine in the end, therefore, I told thee, the wisdom of the devil is like the light of the moon that gave light in the darkness, but when the sun arises to shine, the light of the moon is gone, although it might not be set in darkness, because it is known to thee, and to all, the moon hath arisen before the sun has set, but it gives no light until the setting of the sun, that darkness comes on them, the light shineth in darkness. And perfect so it was with the French nation, for Satan hath gained such footing that they were become like a dark benighted people full of fury against each other, and God was forgotten by them, therefore, in this darkness Satan had power to work in man where he found such an instrument to work by, for them to put their whole trust in the arm of flesh, and it is the arm of flesh is now their trust, and so they might go on until the daylight cometh.

 

But when the sun is risen here,

Mark from the moon no light appears,

But when the daylight is clear

You see the moon, no light is there

To give a lustre to the day.

The sparkling sun, in bright array,

Takes all the lustre from the moon,

You want no feeble light to shine

To guide you through the perfect day

And so the moon must soon decay,

For this the heavens have sure decreed.

I have placed the signs above,

If learned men could see it clear,

England would know my love,

To prove the Lord doth call

To say the marriage of the Lamb,

Must in this land take place.

Then, sure the nations they must come

For to judge all the rest.

Our Bible clear, they now appear,

No man can set us free,

What power in Buonaparte appeared

We see is gone from him,

Because he will fall, I tell you all,

And darkness will appear.

When men my Bible forth do call

To prove the wonder here,

The Sun of Righteousness arise

To set the woman free.

Then let the nations now grow wise,

And war and tumults see

How all together now does stand,

The nations must give up,

For like the fall, in every land

The autumn leaves shall drop.

[Extracted from Had They Had Knowledge, p. 38.]

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[1] George Turner—a Believer, who endeavoured to help continue the Work after Joannas death.

[2] See Book 55, p. 8.

[3] See Book 11, The Dispute with the Powers of Darkness.

[4] The Peace of Parissigned in 1814 proved, even as Joanna had prophesied, but a temporary peace. In the spring of 1815, the fighting, which was to end with the Battle of Waterloo, was resumed.

[5] St. John xvi. 11, 12.

[6] First Book of Wonders.

[7] First Book of Wonders.

[8] Book 57, p. 44.

[9] First Warning, May 1802, Letters to Parliament, Book 62, p. 55. Second Warning, May 1804, Book 21, pp. 1 and 16; Book 23, p. 39. See also Book 59, p. 6.

[10] First Book of Wonders, 1813.