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A Hind Let Loose by Alexander Shields

And continued prejudices against the covenant


with the declaration, and therefore

will subscribe it. Upon which some of the courtiers swore that Mr. Gillespie intended simply to dissuade the king from subscribing it, that so church and state might professedly lay aside his interest; which would have defeat their hopes to make up themselves, as now they have done, upon the then designed ruin of the interest of truth. Then at his coronation, we have his again reiterated confirmations of that covenant; first, he is desired in name of the people to accept the crown, and maintain religion according to the national and solemn league and covenant; whereunto he gave his apparently cordial consent (the words are in the form and order of the coronation with the whole action.) Then next, a sermon being preached upon 2 Kings xi. 12 and 17. the action commenceth, with his most solemn renewing of the national and solemn league and covenant, by oath. Then, he is presented to the people, and their willingness demanded to have him for their king on these terms. At the same time, in the next place, he took the coronation oath. Then on these terms he accepted the sword. And after the crown is set upon his head, the people's obligatory oath is proclaimed on the terms foresaid, otherwise he is not that king to whom they swore subjection. Then being set upon the throne, he was by the minister put in mind of his engagements, from 1 Chron. xxix. 33. And then the nobles of the land came one by one kneeling, and lifting up their hands between his hands, swore the same oath. These things
done, the whole action was closed with a most solid and severe exhortation from several instances, Neh. v. 13. Jer. xxxiv. 18, 19, 20. &c. Thereafter in the year 1651, followed the ratification of all these preceeding treaties, transactions, and engagements, concluded and enacted by the king, and the parliament then fully and freely conveened; whereby the same did pass into a perpetual law. And this covenant, which from the beginning was and is the most sure and indispensible oath of God, became at length the very fundamental law of the kingdom, whereon all the rights or privileges, either of king or people, are principally bottomed and secured. This might seem security sufficient, but considering the former discoveries and experiences they had of his treachery, and the visible appearances (in the mean time) of his refusals, visible reluctances, manifest refilings, open counter actings, and continued prejudices against the covenant, and his following unprecedented avowed perjury, every thing doth indelibly fasten upon them the weakness at least of an overweening credulity, and upon him the wickedness of a perfidious policy, in all these condescensions. After this it came to pass, that zeal for the cause rightly stated was suddenly contracted to a few, and the flame thereof extinguished in many, and court wild-fire substitute in its place: whereby a plain defection was violently carried on by the public resolutioners, who relapsing into that most sinful conjunction with the people of these abominations, so solemnly repented for and resolved against, did notwithstanding bring in notorious malignants, into places of power and trust, in judicatories and armies, in a more politic than pious way of requiring of them a constrained and dissembled repentance, to the mocking of the God of truth, and scorn of all our holy engagements. Which defection did not only cause for a long time an incurable division; the first of that kind, and most permanent of any that ever was in the church of Scotland, by reason of the surcease of general assemblies, stopped and hindered by the yoke of the sectarian usurpation; but also was the spring and source of all our defections since, all flowing from and fomented by that same spirit that fostered that: and for that, since that time, the Lord hath been contending with this church and nation, bringing


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