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A Hind Let Loose by Alexander Shields

Which is so much harped upon by these bonders


such offers. I shall only name

one; in the persecution of queen Mary of England, Dr. Sands, prisoner at London, had the offer of liberty, upon the term of such a bond, finding bail to appear when he should be called, but refused it absolutely; and when a gentleman, without his knowledge, having procured it by giving 1000 l. bond for him, brought him forth and required his consent and observance of the obligation, he would not consent to give any security, and denied his resolution to observe it in the least; whereupon the gentleman very courteously told him, he would stand to his hazard. This was far more like the innocency of the dove, but this new prudence resembles more wisdom of the serpent. Finally, as for Jason's business, which is so much harped upon by these bonders. (1.) These were rulers that he had to deal withal, and not raging tyrants. (2.) They were indifferent arbiters between Jason and the lewd fellows that troubled him, and not both judge and party; he gave no security to his persecutors, as these bonders do, but to the true judges of the cause, who impartially took cognizance of it, from whom Jason might and did expect right. (3.) This was before he was prisoner, being as free as his accusers, and having the law as free for him as it was for them; whereby he could vindicate himself and abide the law, and be absolved by it: which does not answer the case of prisoners actually engaged in and called to a testimony for Christ, when there is no law but what is established in opposition to Christ.
(4.) In the original it is, when they got satisfaction from him; that is, when he so cleared himself, that they could not fasten any transgression upon him, then they absolved him.

2. All these oaths and solemn securities that have been imposed in these times, are dreadful and heinous breaches of the third command, by taking his name in vain in the worst sort, whereby the takers cannot be holden guiltless. For it is impossible such oaths and bonds, however they be constructed, can ever be taken with these requisite qualifications necessary to be observed in all oaths (and consequently in all solemn promises or bonds) that are mentioned once for all, Jer. iv. 2. where one that sweareth, must do it in truth, in judgment, and in righteousness. 1. They cannot be taken in truth, which is a necessary qualification in all oaths, according to the definition of a true oath, which is a solemn invocation of God, for confirmation of some true, lawful, grave, and weighty, useful and worthy business, wherein he is attested and appealed unto, that he, as the only searcher of hearts, may give his testimony to the truth of the thing, and punish the swearers, if he swear not in truth. And this swearing in truth does import and require both sincerity of the heart, filled with reverence and the awful apprehension of a present God; and simplicity of the mind, well informed of the genuine meaning of the oath, that we have clear uptaking of it, and take it not implicitly, but with our own understanding; and also singleness and honesty of the intention, that it be not to deceive, by putting any other sense than the imposer hath, or will allow when he understands it: so the meaning must be clear, and such as may be obviously gathered from the words, and according as they are supposed to be understood by others, especially them that exact the oath; for if they mean one thing and we another, God's name is profaned, and the end of the oath frustrated, and so all equivocations and mental reservations are condemned; as all divines treating on oaths teach, and worthy Mr. Durham particularly on the third command, who asserts, 'that though we could devise some other meaning, that might seem


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