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A Hind Let Loose by Alexander Shields

To promote the kingdom or Christ


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And of all the witnesses that

hold it, and suffer for it, Rev. vi. 9. And the same which is the word of Christ's testimony, is the word of theirs, Rev. xii. 11. by which they overcome, and for which they love not their lives. Wherever then the gospel is preached, it must be a testimony except it be public, at least as public as can be, as we find all Christ's witnesses were in the Old and New Testaments. 3. The motive or principle prompting the Lord's people to a frequenting of gospel ordinances, is a public spirit, stirring up to a public generation work, whereof this is the scope, to promote the kingdom or Christ, and not only to obey the Lord's command enjoining the duty, to enjoy the Lord, the end thereof, to edify their own souls; but to partake in, and promote this great work of the day, for the glory of God, and the church's good. For the gospel is not only a banner of love over his friends, but Christ's standard of war against his enemies, Isa. lix. 19. under which all that countenance it, are called to lift themselves as his soldiers, called, and chosen, and faithful: and it is required of his soldiers that they be valiant for the truth upon the earth, discovering a gallant greatness and generosity of a public spirit, having their designs and desires not limited to their own interests, even spiritual, but aiming at no less than Christ's public glory, the church's public good, the saints public comfort, having a public concern for all Christ's interests, public sympathy for all Christ's friends, and
a public declared opposition to all Christ's enemies: this is a public spirit, the true spirit of all Christ's zealous lovers and votaries; which, when he is a missing, will prompt them to go about the city, in the streets, and in the broad ways, to seek him whom their soul loveth, Cant. iii. 2. and not only in their beds, or secret corners, but they must go to the streets, and to the fields, and avow their seeking of Christ, even though the watchmen should smite them, and the keepers of the walls take their vails from them, Cant. v- Which obliges them to take him into their own cottages, and entertain him in their hearts, and give him a throne there, but also to endeavour to enlarge his dwelling, and propagate his courtly residence through the world, that the kingdoms of the earth may become the kingdoms of the Lord; and if they cannot get that done, yet that he may have the throne in their mother's house, and take up his abode in the church, or nation they belong to, that there his ordinances be established in purity, peace, plenty, and power, according to his own order; and if that cannot be, but that their mother play the harlot, and he be provoked to give up house with her, and, by her children's treachery, the usurping enemy be invited into his place and habitation, and take violent possession of it, and enact his extrusion and expulsion by law; yet they will endeavour to secure a place for him among the remnant, that he may get a lodging among the afflicted and poor 'people that trust in the name of the Lord----that they may feed and ly down, and none make them afraid, Zeph. iii. 12, 13. that the poor of the flock that wait on him, may know that it is the word of the Lord,' Zech. xi. 11. they will lay out themselves to strengthen their hands. This


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