The Revelation of Jesus Christ by Anne Wentworth, an electronic edition. Edited with an introduction by Vickie Taft
- Section: Revelation XVI. August 14.
collection: Early Modern through the 18th Century
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Revelation XVI. August 14.
Whereas the Lord has made way, to bring forth into the World his Revelations sooner, than I expected or thought of, and commanded me very earnestly, to add thereunto, what I have suffered and suffer for being his Messenger, in bearing his Testimony to the World: And I endeavoured, to put it by, for shame's sake. There fear and trembling came upon me, that I could not withstand it, but was forced to declare herewith openly, how for obeying the Word of the Lord, and his Commandments, I am reproached as a proud, wicked, deceived, deluded, lying Woman; a mad, melancholy, crackbrained, self willed, conceited Fool, and black Sinner, led by whimsies, notions, and knif-knafs106
of my own head; one that speaks blasphemy, not fit to take the Name of God in her mouth; an Heathen and Publican, a Fortune-teller, an Enthusiast, and the like much more, whereof I appeal to God, to judge: And then let all slanderers challenge their own words.
Thus we stand ready before the Lord, and attend upon him, to pass sentence, and to give a visible Testimony from Heaven, which of these two Spirits he will own? That Spirit, which hath dictated the Verses in this Book; or that, which speaks all those evil Words and Defamations: For God cannot own both.
And when it cometh to pass, that you Slanderers are found not only false Accusers and Persecutors, but also Rebukers, Controlers and Blasphemers107 against the Holy Ghost, and that therefore God shall make your Name to stink and rot upon the Earth, and put you to eternal shame for what you have done and said falsly of me since you well know your selves, that whosoever loveth and maketh a Lye, must stand without with the Dogs and Sorcerers, and Whoremongers, and Murderers, and Idolaters108 . How is it then possible, that you, knowing this, can think to go unpunished by the just, true and holy God, who judgeth righteously? Therefore let all mark, how the Lord will fall upon you, and how quickly he will begin: For your lying words have made the Lords anger to burn hot against you; Ezek. 24.27. In that day shall my mouth be opened up to him, which is escaped, and I shall speak, and be no more reviled, no more abused, no more persecuted: But you shall be a sign unto all people, and they shall know, that it is the Lord, that spake by me unto you, and all the People of England. Ezek. 24.25, 26. Shall it not be, saith the Lord, in the day, when I take from them their strength, (N B. New-years day!) the joy of their Glory, the desire of their Eyes, and that whereupon they set their minds; that he, that escaped that day, shall come unto thee, and take thee by the hand, to cause thee, to hear it with thine Ears?
And as concerning my Husbands Behaviour towards me in this Case of the Lords, He the Lord will also judge betwixt Him and Me, and make known, whether I am an impudent Hussy, a disobedient Wife to him, one that run away from her Husband, and the like. Or whether He is the Man, that will not suffer me to live with him, that will not receive me into his Habitation, unless I deny the Lord, and his Message, and avow to be deluded by a lying Spirit. And therefore he takes no care of me, nor once looks after me these almost two years. These things the Lord will judge and bring to light, that all People shall know, how He likes of their encouraging my Husband against me, in making me the Butt of their malice; but my Husband, they make the patient, meek Lamb, and strengthen him thus against the Lord. Therefore all that have done, and do so, shall feel the Rod of an angry God, as there is Hanserd Knollys with his Church, and Nehemiah Cocks, my Husbands Pastor, Thomas Hicks, William Dicks, Philip Barder, my Relations, and hundreds more, that have a hand in setting my Husband against me, so that he will not own me: And then they go on to blame and defame me, and say, that I am run away from him!
So far it is the will of God, that the World should know the true reason, why I must live alone and apart from my said Husband, which (as it will stand before God) is no other, but that I cannot deny the Testimony of Jesus, but keep the Commandments of God, being obedient to all his Wills. And this is the thing, the only thing, that makes my Husband and hundreds more, to be wroth with me, and endeavour to take away my good Name, in spreading abroad, that I keep Men company, and have my Rogues come to me, and live a scandalous life in an Alms-house. But as the Pharisees of old said of the Son of God, that he was a gluttonous man, a Wine-bibber, a Friend of Publicans and Sinners109 , and one that hath the Devil; and yet he bore it patiently: So shall I wait in patience, how the Lord Jesus doth love and like of their thus defaming me, which will be seen and known openly, for to be recorded to Generations to come.
After I had written this, the Word of the Lord came unto me, and said: My anger is greatly kindled, against all thy malicious lying Enemies, and I will appear a swift Witness against them, and pour out the Vials of my wrath upon them: And I will make my self known by the Judgment, which I will execute against them, by ensnaring them in the Works of their own Hands; even whilst they are in their wicked way of lying, and bold in their sin, I the Lord will appear with my Judgment against them.
Moreover, the Lord said, The great Disappointment and Overturning shall surely be accomplished, which did begin before New-years day 1677. for then was the beginning of what will now very shortly follow. And then they shall all know, saith the Lord, how falsly they have accused thee in that matter: And that they have spoken from a blind, dark, lying Spirit: And they shall see, that thou wast not deceived, or deluded, as they say, but that thou hast spoken the Truth in soberness, and in the fear of God: And I will decide the Controversie.
106. Though the OED does not list "knif-knafs" as a variation of "knick-knacks," Wentworth seems to use the term in this manner. When Elaine Hobby quotes this sentence, she changes "knif-knafs" to "knick-knacks." See Hobby, Virtue of Necessity, 52.
107. In 2 Timothy 3:1-3, Paul tells Timothy "This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good." Wentworth suggests that her persecution is a sign that England is in its "last days."
108. In Revelation 22:14-15, an angel says to John, "Blessed are that do his commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie."
109. Matthew 11:19: "The Son of man came eating and drinking, and they say, Behold a gluttonous, and a winebibber , a friend of publicans and sinners." See also Luke 7:34: "The Son of man is come eating and drinking; and ye say, Behold a gluttonous man, and a winebibber , a friend of publicans and sinners!" Wentworth compares the accusations made against her to the accusations that the Pharisees made against Christ.