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A Hind Let Loose by Alexander Shields

The Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus


their resentment of such presumption,

which I do not see how they can, if they abide under the shadow thereof the same way as they do. I grant liberty is very desirable, and may be taken and improven from enemies of religion: and so do the wanderers now take it and improve it to the best advantage, without receiving it by acquiescing in any terms. But such a liberty as this was never offered without a destructive design, nor ever received without a destructive effect. It is one of the filthy flatteries found in the English addresses, particularly that from Totness, that the present indulger is like another Cyrus who proclaimed liberty to the people of God, Ezra i. But who sees not the disparity in every respect? Cyrus at his very first entry into the government did lay out himself for the church's good; this man who speaks now so fair, his first work was to break our head, and next to put on our hood, first to assert and corroborate his prerogative, and then by virtue of that to dispense with all penal laws: it was foretold that Cyrus should deliver the church at that time; but was it ever promised that the church should get liberty to advance antichrist? or that antichrist, or one of his limbs, should be employed in the church's deliverance, while such? The Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus; can it be said without blasphemy that the Lord stirred up this man, to contrive the introduction of popery by this gate and gap, except in a penal sense for judgment? Cyrus had a charge to build the Lord a house, but this is
not a charge but a grant or licence, not from nor according to God's authority but man's, not to build Christ a house, but a Babel for antichrist; and all this liberty is but contrived as scaffolding for that edifice, which when it is advanced then the scaffolding must be removed.

3. Considering him in his relation as a magistrate, it were contrary to their testimony so often renewed and ratified, and confirmed with so many reasons, and sealed by so much blood, bonds, banishment, and other sufferings, to own or acknowledge his authority which is mere usurpation and tyranny; in that by the laws of the land he is incapable of government, and that he had neither given nor can give, without an hypocritical and damning cheat, the oath and security indispensibly required of him before and at his entry to the government. Yet this liberty cannot be complied with, without recognizing his authority that he arrogates in giving it: seeing he tenders it to all his good subjects, and gives it by his sovereign authority, and to the end that by the liberty thereby granted, the peace and security of the government in the practice thereof may not be indangered; and in the declaration to England, it is offered as an expedient to establish his government on such a foundation, as may make his subjects happy, and unite them to him by inclination as well as duty; to which indeed the acceptance thereof hath a very apt subserviency: seeing it implies, not only owning of the government out of duty, but an union and joining with it and him by inclination, which is a cordial confederacy with God's enemy, and a co-operating to the establishment of his tyranny; that the peace and security thereof may not be endangered. And in his former proclamation, he gives them the same security for their rights and properties, which he gives for religion; and in the English declaration, addeth that to the perfect enjoyment of their property, which was never invaded, &c. Which to accept, were not only to take the security of a manifest lie, but to prefer the word of a man that cannot, must not, will not keep it (without going cross to his principles) to the security of right and law which is hereby infringed, and to acknowledge not only the liberty of religion, the right of property to be his grant: which when ever it is removed, there must remain no more character for it, but stupid slavery entailed upon posterity, and pure and perfect tyranny transmitted to them. The sin and absurdity whereof may be seen demonstrated, head 2.


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