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A Hind Let Loose by Alexander Shields

So that what is objected from Eccl


power, and against the use

and usurpation of a tyrannical power, and infer not only the lawfulness of resisting kings, when they abuse their power (as is demonstrate unanswerably by these authors) but the expediency and necessity of the duty of resisting this tyrannical power, whensoever we are in a capacity, if we would not be found treacherous covenant-breakers, and betrayers of the interest of God, and the liberties of the nation, and of our brethren, together with the posterity, into the hands of this popish and implacable enemy, and so bring on us the curse of Meroz, and the curse of our brethren's blood, crying for vengeance on the heads of the shedders thereof, and upon all, who being in case, came not to their rescue; and the curse of posterity, for not transmitting that reformation and liberty, whereof we were by the valour of our forefathers put and left in possession. I shall not therefore restrict myself to the state of the question, as propounded ordinarily, to wit, Whether or not, when a covenanted king doth really injure, oppress and invade his subjects civil and religious rights, or unavoidably threatens to deprive their dearest and nearest liberties, and sends out his emissaries with armed violence against them; and when all redress to be had, or hope by any address or petition, is rendered void or inaccessible, yea addressing interdicted under severe penalties, as treasonable; then, and in that case, may a community of these subjects defend themselves, and their religion and liberties,
by arms, in resisting his bloody emissaries? But, to bring it home to our present case, and answer the laxness of the adversaries position of the uncontroulableness of every one that wears a crown, I shall state it thus: Whether or not is it a necessary duty for a community (whether they have the concurrence of the primores or nobles, or not) to endeavour, in the defence of their lives, religion, laws and liberties, to resist and repress the usurpation and tyranny of prevailing dominators, using or abusing their power for subverting religion, invading the liberties, and overturning the fundamental laws of their country? I hold the affirmative, and shall essay to prove it, by the same arguments that conclude this question, as usually stated; which will more than evince the justifiableness of the sufferings upon this head. In prosecuting of this subject, I shall first premit some concessory considerations to clear it. And secondly, bring reasons to prove it.

First, For clearing of this truth, and taking off mistakes, these concessions may be considered.

1. The ordinance of magistracy, which is of God, is not to be resisted, no, not so much as by disobedience or non obedience, nay, not so much as mentally, by cursing in the heart, Eccles. x. 20. but a person clothed therewith, abusing his power, may be in so far resisted. But tyrants, or magistrates turning tyrants, are not God's ordinance; and there is no hazard of damnation, for refusing to obey their unjust commands, but rather the hazard of that is in walking willingly after the commandment, when the statutes of Omri are kept. So that what is objected from Eccl. viii. 2-4. "I counsel thee to keep the king's commandment," &c. is answered on Head II. and is to be understood only of the lawful commands of lawful kings.

2. Rebellion is a damnable sin, except where the word is taken in a lax sense, as Israel is


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