House of Commons Journal Volume 7
2 April 1659

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1802

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'House of Commons Journal Volume 7: 2 April 1659', Journal of the House of Commons: volume 7: 1651-1660 (1802), pp. 623-624. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=24737 Date accessed: 29 July 2014.


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Saturday, the 2d of April, 1659.

Prayers.

Publick Fast.

Mr. Grove reports from the Committee to whom it was referred, to prepare a Declaration of the Grounds and Reasons for setting apart a Day of Fasting and Publick Humiliation, the Draught of a Declaration, setting forth the Grounds and Reasons thereof: The which was read.

Resolved, &c. That this Declaration be read in Parts.

The First Paragraph was read; and was in these Words; viz. "We look upon it as a Duty incumbent upon Us, who are set upon the Watch-Tower, to declare what we see: And, seriously weighing the Condition of these Three Nations, by God's Ways towards us, and our Ways towards Him, and the present Posture of Affairs among us, we cannot but have sad Thoughts and Apprehensions of the Tokens of God's just Displeasure against us:" And was, upon the Question, assented unto; and resolved to be Part of this Declaration.

Publick Fast.

The Second Paragraph was read; and was in these Words; viz. "As for the Ways of the Lord, wherein He hath walked towards us, they have been Ways of Multitudes of Mercies, in Vicissitudes of Dangers: For, in the saddest Dispensations of his Providence towards us, he hath, in the midst of Judgment, remembered Mercy, and hath seemed to say, as of old to Ephraim and Israel; How shall I give thee up, England? How shall I deliver you, Scotland, and Ireland? How shall I make you as Admah? How shall I set you as Zeboim? My Heart is turned within me; my Repentings are kindled together: Yet we cannot say, that his Wrath is turned away; but His Hand is stretched out still: For though we have been emptied frem Vessel to Vessel, yet we can find no Rest, or Settlement: We see not our Signs, nor any thing that can tell us, How long: This is a Lamentation; and if our Ways towards God, in all this, be considered, it must be for a Lamentation:" And was, upon the Question, assented to; and resolved to be Part of this Declaration.

The Third Paragraph was read; and was in these Words; viz. "For, instead of humbling ourselves under the mighty Hand of God, and meeting Him in the Ways of his Judgments, we turn our Backs upon Him; cast him out of Mind; vex His holy Majesty with our Murmurings, and Complainings of Events; repining at the Miscarriages of Instruments; envying, censuring, and fretting against one another; no Man, in the mean time, laying his Hand upon his own Heart, saying, What have I done?" And was, upon the Question, assented to; and resolved to be Part of this Declaration.

The Fourth Paragraph was read; and was in these Words; viz. "How highly is God provoked by our great Apostasy, and Backsliding; arising chiefly from Want of receiving the Truth, in the Love thereof ! Whereby these Nations are overspread with many Blasphemies, and damnable Heresies, against God Himself, and His glorious Attributes; against the Lord Jesus Christ, His Person, His Offices, and his Merits; against the Holy Spirit; against the Word of God, the only Rule of Faith and Life; by denying the Authority thereof, and crying up the Light in the Hearts of sinful Men, as the Rule and Guide of all their Actions; besides many other abominable Errors, which have opened a wide Door for the Letting-in of the most horrible Contempt of the Ordinances and Institutions of Jesus Christ; of the Ministers and Ministry of the glorious Gospel; together with the Growth of gross Ignorance, Atheism, and Profaneness of all Sorts; such as are vain Swearing and Cursing, Profanation of the Lord's Day, Drunkenness, Uncleanness, and other ungodly Courses, for which the Land mourns;" And was, upon the Question, assented to; and resolved to be Part of this Declaration.

The Fifth Paragraph was read; and was in these Words; viz. "And besides all this, That which should be Cause of deepest Humiliation to us, and is of high Provocation to God, is the great Scandal of Professors, and the sad Divisions amongst them; whereby Religion hath been so wounded in the House of her Friends:" And was, upon the Question, assented to; and resolved to be Part of this Declaration: And that, between the Word "Scandal," and the Word "Professors," the Word "of" should be put out; and the Words "given by" inserted instead thereof.

The Sixth Paragraph was read; and was in these Words; viz. "And that which makes these Abominations the more National, and gives us the more Cause to be humbled for them, is the too much Remissness, and Connivance of the Civil Magistrates; to whom belongs the Care of maintaining God's publick Worship, Honour and Purity of Doctrine, as well as of punishing all Sins against the Second Table; in permitting the Growth of these Abominations, by suffering Persons, under the Abuse of Liberty of Conscience, to disturb the Publick Ordinances; and to publish their corrupt Principles and Practices, to the Seducing and Infecting of others:" And was, upon the Question, assented to; and resolved to be Part of this Declaration.

The Seventh Paragraph was read; and was in these Words; viz. "And that which maketh all these Sins to be, out of measure, sinful, is, that they are against so many signal Deliverances and Mercies; under such a glorious Sunshine of the Gospel; and contrary to so many Covenants, Vows, and Protestations, Personal and National:" And was, upon the Question, assented to; and resolved to be Part of this Declaration.

The Eighth Paragraph was read; and was in these Words; viz. "Nor are we, in this Day of our Humiliation, to forget the Judgments of God; whereby He gives these Nations Tokens of His Displeasure; that, in the midst of all our Changes and Unsettlements, He hath still left us in the Dark, and hid Counsel from the Wise; so that we have not hitherto attained to that happy Settlement in Church and State, which hath lain so much upon the Spirits, and hath been so much in the Prayers and Desires of all that fear Him:" And was, upon the Question, assented unto; and resolved to be Part of this Declaration.

Some Exceptions being taken to some Words spoken by Mr. Broughton, in the Debate upon this Declaration;

Resolved, &c. That Mr. Broughton do explain himself, concerning the Words spoken by him; and to which Exceptions were taken by the House.

Mr. Broughton stood up in his Place; and explained himself concerning the Words spoken by him; and to which Exceptions were taken: Wherewith the House rested satisfied.

The Ninth Paragraph was read; and was in these Words; viz. "That there hath been so great a Mortality upon Man and Beast, in many Places of this Nation; besides the Decay of Trade, and the great Dearth which is amongst us: Which, if the Lord be not so merciful as to send seasonable Weather, may threaten a Famine:" And was, upon the Question assented to; and resolved to be Part of this Declaration:

The Tenth Paragraph was read; and was in these Words; viz. "These Things seriously considered, is there not a Cause to sanctify a Fast; to call a solemn Assembly; to gather the Elders, and all the Inhabitants of the Land into the House of the Lord our God; to cry mightily unto the Lord:" And was, upon the Question, assented to; and resolved to be Part of this Declaration.

Resolved, &c. That the Debate upon this Declaration be adjourned until Monday Morning next; and that nothing else do then intervene.

Excise.

Resolved, &c. That the House do resume the Debate upon the Bill, concerning the Excise, and new Impost; and concerning Customs, and Tonage and Poundage; immediately next after the Declaration for the Publick Fast is dispatched.

This House adjourns itself until Monday Morning, at Eight of the Clock.