The Revelation of Jesus Christ by Anne Wentworth, an electronic edition. Edited with an introduction by Vickie Taft
- Section: Revelation XII. July 20.
collection: Early Modern through the 18th Century
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Revelation XII. July 20.
Early in the morning, when I awaked, the Lord minded me of that man, who had been over-night to see me, and asked me, what News; and the next morning, as soon as I awaked, the Lord said unto me: If any ask thee for News, thou must tell them, that thou hast none, that will please any but only the little Flock of Christ, which are few in number, in respect of the great multitude76
, that go in the broad way77
, which leads down to Hell.
This morning the Lord did confirm it more fully unto me, why his anger was so highly kindled against78 these people in England, the Formalists, and Hypocrites, and foolish Virgins, which have overspread the Land; but that he will purge, prune and weed it: And said further unto me: Because thou art a true Child of God, and art my Little one, and my Messenger, to declare my mind and will, which thou hast performed: and I the Lord gave a sign unto the Nation, and fulfilled it; I have made good my word unto thee, nay have been better than my word unto thee: And yet those sottish, conceited, sleepy people will not awake, to behold the wonders of the Lord; they will not regard the Word, which I the Lord speak unto thee, nor will they mind my doings: wherefore I the Lord have sworn by my Holiness, that these people, of all others, shall not go unpunished79 ; for I will severely punish them, that have reviled, scorned, reproached, falsly accused, mocked and oppressed thy Soul and Conscience, to make it bleed in secret before me, many a time; notwithstanding that whosoever offends one of Christs little ones, it were better a Millstone were hanged about their necks, and they cast into the midst of the Sea80 : For what they have done to thee, I take as done to me81 : so that my anger is highly kindled against them82 , that abuse my Messenger, reject my Word, and do despite to the Spirit of Grace. Some in particular, I the Lord have marked out, to bear my severe wrath; and now thou must write it down, and be a witness how I will fulfill my Word upon them.
I the Lord say unto thee, That I will severly punish thy Husband, and William Dicks, for their sin is great.
And I the Lord say unto thee, That I will severely punish Hanserd Knollys83 , and his Church, for hardning of thy Husbands heart against thee, and for making of thee as an Heathen and Publican, for no other cause but for thy obeying of my Word, in coming out of their Church, when I the Lord did call thee out, and command thee to leave them.
And I the Lord say unto thee, That I will severely punish some of thy Kindred, for their unnaturalness unto thee, whilst thou was imployed in my Service; but who they are, and what it is, that I will do, I leave that to thee, whether thou wilt speak that or no, for they cannot bear it from thee.
And I the Lord say unto thee, That I will severely punish Philip Barder, for his calling of thee, to repent of the Lords work; and for his refusing of thee for his Tenant, when I the Lord sent thee; and for his being unwilling, to take my word, when he was ready, to take a mans word, a poor, blind, ignorant, dark Soul, that knows not me, nor what I am a doing; and he talked to the grief of thine heart, as others did wound and pierce thee, my faithful Servant84 .
76. A "great multitude" is a common descriptive term for a crowd or a large number of people in the Old and New Testaments. See, e.g., 2 Chronicles 28:5 and Matthew 14:14.
77. In Christ's "Sermon on the Mount," He tells His followers, "Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat" (Matthew 7:13).
78. Often it is said of God in the Old Testament that his "anger was kindled against" sinners. See, e.g., Zechariah 10:3 and Numbers 24:10.
79. Jeremiah 49:12: "Behold, they whose judgment was not to drink of the cup have assuredly drunken; and art thou he that shall altogether go unpunished? thou shalt not go unpunished, but thou shalt surely drink of it."
80. In Matthew 18:6, Christ says, "But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone was hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea." Wentworth again posits herself as the humble, innocent, childlike "little one" as she does in "Revelation VII," thereby emphasizing the particular injustice of her persecution and the surety of her persecutors' damnation.
81. In Matthew 25:40, the persecutors of the faithful are warned that Christ will deal harshly with them on Judgment Day: "And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me." Wentworth again warns her persecutors that they will be punished for their abuse of her.
82. Often it is said of God in the Old Testament that his "anger was kindled against" sinners. See, e.g., Zechariah 10:3 and Numbers 24:10.
83. Hanserd Knollys, the Anabaptist preacher, who is also referred to in "Revelation IX" as "Knowles."
84. This is a likely reference to the parable of the "faithful servant" in Matthew 24:45 & 25:21-23.