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Full text of "The whole works of the Rev. Oliver Heywood : including some Tracts extremely scarce, and others from unpublished Manuscripts ; with memoirs of his life"

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PntUersttg of ®oroiito 

Professor W.H. Ellis 
& Miss M.E. Ellis 

Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2010 with funding from 

University of Toronto 



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Including some Tracts extremely scarce, and others from 
impublisked Mamiscripts : 










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,.., JUN3O 1989 

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D. BROWN, ST. Andrew's street, 



* ... 






Preface to the Life of Mr. Hey wood - - - - - 1 

PART I. Heywood Family— Birth of O. Heywood— His 
religious Convictions — Pious Education — Early 
Attachment to the Ministry — Entrance at the Uni- 
versity — Spiritual Privileges there — Religious So- 
ciety at Cambridge — Return Home — Settlement at 
Coley 5 

PART II. History of Coley— Ministers at Coley— Com- 
mencement of Mr. Haywood's Ministry there — 
His Ordination — Reflections on his Settlement at 
Coley — His Lodgings — Sickness — Disappoint- 
ments — Marriage — Birth of his Son John — Pa- 
rental Affection — Birth of his Son Eliezer — Death 
of Mr. Hey wood's IVIother — Preparation for Trou- 
bles — Neglect of the Lord's Supper and Discipline 
at Coley — Ordinances restored — His Joy on the Oc- 
casion — Opposition — Public Calamities — Cheshire 
Rising — Birth and Death of Mr. Hey wood's Son 
Nathaniel — Conduct of Mr. Hey wood's Opponents 
— His Invitation to Preston — The Restoration of 
Charles II— Death of Mrs. Heywood— A faithful 
Servant - - - - - - - -17 

PART III. Ingratitude of Charles II. to the Nonconformists 
— Declaration against private Bleetings — Mr. Hey- 
wood's Citation to York, and Reflections — His Sus- 
pension — The Act of Uniformity — Nonconformists 
not guilty of Schism — Excommunication of Mr. 


Heywood — Preaching at Coley Chapel prevented 
— Another Excommunication — Private Services — 
Frequent Alarms — Third Excommunication — Ex- 
clusion from public Ordinances — Wari'ants is- 
sued — Occasional Labours — Violent Opposition — 
The Conventicle Act — Frequent Opportunities of 
Preaching — Activity of Mr. Heyw^ood's Enemies — 
A Gospel ]\Iinister at Coley Chapel — Mr. Hey wood's 
Endeavours to obtain Absolution — His Visit to 
Lancashire — Journey into the South — Preservation 
from Dangers — Providential Supply — The Plague 
of London - - - - - - -HI 

PART IV. The Five-mile Act— Soliloquy— Mr. Hey wood's 
Banishment from Home — His frequent Journeys, 
Labours, and Dangers — The Fire of London — IMr. 
Heywood's second IMarriage — Various Journeys — 
Occasional Preaching at Coley Chapel — Preserva- 
tion and Labours continued — Sickness — Recovery, 
and renewed Labours — Severities increased — Rea- 
sons for preaching at his own House — Imprison- 
ment at Leeds — The Conventicle Act revised and 
enlarged — IMr. Heywood fined for preaching at 
Coley Chapel — The spoiling of his Goods — Re- 
proach for the Truth — Hazardous Labours — Divine 
Enjoyments in Private — Observance of Bartholo- 
mew's Day — Self-examination and Covenant — Re- 
markable Pi'ovidence ------ II7 

PART V. Blr. Heywood's Thankfulness for private Liberty 
— Declaration of public Liberty to the Nonconfor- 
mists — Mr. Heywood's Removal to Northowram — 
Receipt of License — Reflections — Formation of a 
christian Society at Northowram — Church Cove- 
nant — Union of Presbyterians and Independents — 
Mr. Heywood's Labours and Success — Ordination 
at Manchester — Dr. Hook's Opposition — Dedica- 
tion of his Sons to the Ministry — Personal Cove- 
nants >_-__--- 166 
PART VI. Licenses threatened to be taken away — Par- 
liament prorogued — Licenses revoked — IMr. Hey- 
wood's conduct on the occasion — His Perseverance 
in Labours — Grateful Recollections — Parental An- 
xiety — Death of Relatives^ Mr. Rich. Heywood, 


Rev. John Angler, Rev. Nath. Heywood — Self- 
examination — Ml*. Heywood apprehended at Shaw 
Chapel — Thanksgiving Day — Extracts fx-om his 
Diary — Sickness of Mrs. and Eliezer Heywood — 
Covenant renewed — Another Excommunication — 
Ordination of Timothy Jollie — Mr. H.'s successful 
Labours — Repeated Illness of Eliezer Heywood — 
The Death of an ungodly Preacher — Review of 
16'81 — Severities exercised — Spiritual Journeys — 
Visit to London — Deliverances from Dangers — 
Disinterested Labours — Mr. Heywood's Apprehen- 
sion and Trial — His Perplexity — Imprisonment in 
York Castle — Prison Employment — His Liberation 
— Renewal of his Labours - - - - - 1 97 

PART VII. Death of Charles II. and Accession of James 
II. — Declaration for Liberty of Worship — Com- 
mencement of the Dissenting Interest at Halifax — 
Erection of the Chapel at Northowram — The Re- 
volution — Mr. Heywood's Annual Covenant — His 
Sickness — The Congregations at Alverthorp and 
Pontefract — Instances of Mr. Heywood's Useful- 
ness — His Journey to York — Renewed Covenants 
— Last Visits to Lancashire and York — Invitations 
to London and Blanchester — Reflections on the 
Year 1698— Visit of Mr. Timothy Jollie— Sickness 
of his Wife and Son John — Return of his Baptis- 
mal Day — Last Year of IMr. Heywood's Life - 279 

PART VIII. Mr. Heywood's last Sickness and Death— His 
Character as a Son — Husband — Father — INIaster of 
a Family — Relative — Friend — Subject — His Reli- 
gion — Spirituality of Mind — Spirit of Prayer — 
Gratitude to God — Self-Examination — Watchful- 
ness — Humility — Faith — Liberality — Talents — 
Simplicity of Manner — Fervour of Spirit — Consci- 
entiousness — Disinterestedness — Doctrinal Senti- 
ments — His Views of Church Government — -His 
Diligence in his Work — The Success of his Ministry 321 

APPENDIX. Extracts from Mr. Heywood's Diary - - 372 
Soliloquies ,___-_- 385 

Epistle to the Reader of " Advice to an only Child " 420 
Original Letters »-_-_- 426 




Dedication 447 

The Preface 448 

A Short Historical Account of the Life and Death of the 

Rev. Nathaniel Heywood ----- 453 

Pedigree of the Heywood Family, from the Time of Edward 

VI. to the Year 1826 506 


Preface to the Life of Mr. Angier _ - . - - 517 
A Narrative of the Life and Death of the Rev. John Angier, 

Minister of the Gospel at Denton - _ - 519 

Close of ]Mrs. Ellen Angier's Life 573 

A Biographical Account of Mrs. Elizabeth Heywood, the 

first Wife of the Rev. O. Heywood, extracted from 

his Manuscripts ------- 574 

A brief jMemoir of Mr. Richard Heywood, the Father of the 

Rev. Oliver and Nathaniel Heywood - - - 579 
Particulars of the Life of Mrs. Alice Heywood, observed and 

collected by her Son O. Heywood - - - 586 
Memoir of Mr. John Heywood, eldest Son of the Rev. O. 

Heywood 594 

Memoir of ]\Ir. Eliezer Heywood, second Son of the Rev. O. 

Heywood 602 

Conclusion --.-_..-- 606 

Erratum — Page fi05, the reference at the bottom should be to Letters 
III. and IV. Pages 420 and 430. 





Hiarg ant> otter u«piiljU0f)et> J^anujscviptjsf, 






The name of Oliver Heywood has been long and 
deservedly held in high esteem, especially in the county 
of Lancashire, in which he was born, and in the 
West Riding of Yorkshire, in which he chiefly labour- 
ed. He was when living a man eminently honoured by 
God as the instrument of " turning many to righte- 
ousness" by his evangelical discourses, and apostolical 
labours in the cause of true godliness. Since his transla- 
tion to the firmament of celestial glory, in which he 
shines as a star of the first magnitude, many sojourners 
in this vale of tears have been instructed and cheered in 
their passage towards the heavenly kingdom by the per- 
usal of the works he left behind. He was called to bear 
his part in the common sufferings of those devoted mini- 
sters of Christ in England, who in the year 16'62 relin- 
quished their ecclesiastical benefices, and were prepared 
to lose all and suffer martyrdom itself, "rather than act 
contrary to conscience, or desert the cause of civil and 
religious liberty." The traditional accounts of some of 
those privations, and of the remarkable interpositions 
of Divine Providence on his behalf, have greatly contri- 
buted to the celebrity of his character. But his genuine 
piety, as well as his labours and sufferings, made him 
highly beloved by good men with whom he was per- 
VOL. I. U 


sonally acquainted, and has caused his memory to be 
venerated in succeeding periods of the church of Christ, 
by those to whom he has been known only by report, 
or by his edifying publications. 

A "Life of O. Heywood" was published many 
years since by the late, revered Dr. Fawcett, who when 
he wrote that account, possessed only two volumes of 
Mr. Heywood's private papers. Afterwards he some- 
times entertained the idea of composing a new and an 
enlarged edition, having obtained much fuller informa- 
tion, but at last declined it on account of his other 
engagements and the increased infirmities of old age. 
A short time before his death, the venerable Doctor 
encouraged the writer of this Life to follow up the 
design, he having been favoured by Mr. Heyavood's 
descendants and others, with upwards of twenty vo- 
lumes of his private manuscripts .* 

In compiling this Memoir, the writer has endeavour- 
ed to present to the world a faithful narrative of the 
Life of O. Heywood ; an unexaggerated record of his 
labours and sufferings in the cause of Christ; and a plain 
exhibition of the religious truths he received as " the 
glorious gospel of the blessed God," together with the 
influence of those truths on his public and private cha- 
racter. To render the narrative as interesting as possi- 

* The Writer cheerfully embraces this opportunity of publicly 
acknowledging his special obligations to the late Rev. Dr. Fawcett, 
to Dr. Raffles, Liverpool, the Rev. Rich. Astley, Halifax, and IMiss 
Heywood, Mansfield, for the loan of valuable MSS; to the late Rev. 
Dr. Ryland, Bristol, for extracts from the Northowram Register; 
and to the Rev. IMr. Hunter, Bath, for his useful aid in composing 
the Genealogical Table of the Heywood Family. 

PllEFACE. 3 

ble, it consists chiefly of extracts from Mr. Heywood's 
private papers, so that the work may be considered as 
a specimen of auto-biography. The manuscripts from 
which the selections have been made are the following: 

" A Relation" of the most considerable passages of his Life 
from infancy till nearly the fortieth year of his age. 

" Soliloquies" on various occurrences of his life and the state 
of his mind, from May 1653 to June 1682, a period comprising 
nearly the first thirty years of his ministry. 

"Covenants" occasional and annual, from Feb. 1673 to 1680. 

from June 1685 to February 1702. 

" Returns of Prayer," from January 1672 to 1677. 
from 1682 to 1702. 

" Self-Reflections," from November 1677 to 1700. 

" Experiences with Reflections," from February 1680 to 1702. 

" Diary," from its commencement in 1666 to 1673. 

from July 1677 to May 1680. 

from May 1682 to July 1686. 

from March 1695 to June 1699. 

from October 1699 to within five days of his 


"Particulars respecting Coley, collected by O. Heywood." 
A private Record of the members of the church at Northowram, 
containing also the church covenant, &c. 

" The Heywood Family." Containing the Lives of Mr. 
Heywood's ancestors and pious relatives, written by himself. 
In this interesting volume, the history of the Family is con- 
tinued to the present day by surviving relations. 

The memoir, it is hoped, will be acceptable to the 
general Reader, particularly as it relates to one of the 
most eventful periods of English history. The Pro- 
testant Dissenter will be pleased to meet with some 
particulars concerning Mr. Heywood's companions 


4 rilEFACE. 

ill tribulation and the general history of Nonconformity; 
he will be reminded what were the principles by which 
his forefathers and predecessors were influenced in 
separating from the Church of England, as by law 
established, and that English Dissent has not depended 
on the lives of the ejected ministers, but is founded on 
just and christian principles, and upheld by the mighty 
power of God ; and he will learn to cherish and pro- 
pagate those sentiments which animated those Con- 
fessors, and to which he is so much indebted for that 
measure of civil and religious liberty he now enjoys. 
Pious Christians of various denominations will be 
gratified with the simple relation of religious experi- 
ence, given by one of the most eminent servants of 
God. They will probably admire his diligence, zeal, 
devotedness, and success as a minister ; but when they 
follow him into the domestic scenes of his life, or the 
retirements of the closet, they will be able to converse 
with him as a fellow-believer, and more fully to sym- 
pathize with him in his anxieties and hopes, and sor- 
rows, and joys as a Christian. 

Had Mr. Heywood's manuscripts fallen into other 
hands, doubtless a memorial might have been raised to 
his memory more worthy of the distinguished subject 
whose life is recorded, and more deserving the attention 
of the public. Such, however, as it is, the Author 
commends it to the blessing of " the God of all grace," 
who sometimes accomplishes his purposes of mercy by 
the meanest instruments, the more effectually to pro- 
mote his glory. 






Heywood Family^Birth of 0. Hepvood-His religious Convictions 
-.Pious Education— Early Attachment to the Ministry— Entrance 
at the University—Spiritval Privileges there— Religious Society at 
Cambridge— Return Home— Settlement at Coley. 

The pre-eminent usefulness, which in almost every 
age distinguishes a few highly honoured individuals, 
furnishes ample scope for the pen of the biographer; for 
however closely they may imitate Him, who did not 
cause "his voice to be heard in the street;" then- 
agency employed in producing the moral changes of a 
widely extended sphere cannot escape observation. 
When men have possessed a diversity of talents, which 
has occasioned a general interest in their favour, or 
when in the course of their lives, remarkable incidents 
have occurred, or when amidst dangers they have been 
peculiarly guarded, and wonderfully rescued by gra- 
cious and signal interpositions of Providence; biography 
in giving a portrait of them becomes interesting. The 
Rev. O. Heywood comes before the public, with no 
ordinary advantages. The eventful period in which 
he lived, and the singular piety with which report has 


adorned his character, as well as the unwearied efforts 
which, it is known, he made to do good, and the exten- 
sive usefulness which attended his exertions through 
the whole of his course, have created a predilection for 
him, and make it a gratifying task to trace his origin, 
and sketch the circumstances of his life. 

" It is possible," says the pious subject of this me- 
moir, " that we have sprung from some younger 
branch of the house of Heywood, of Heywood Hall, 
an ancient esquire's seat between Rochdale and Bury; 
for Mr. Robert Heywood, whom I knew, a pious, 
reverend, old gentleman, and an excellent poet, was 
wont to call my father cousin : but kinship grew 
out in process of time ; and it is not very material of 
what family we are, so that we be of the household 
of faith, and have God for our father, Christ for our 
elder brother, and grace flowing in our sjiiritual veins, 
disposing us to act for God." If he could not boast of 
descent from the great and noble of the earth, he could 
rejoice in the number of his relations distinguished 
for their piety. His grandfather, Oliver Heywood, 
after whom he was named, " was renowned for his 
zeal, meekness, humility, love, and growth in grace;" 
though not brought to a saving acquaintance with the 
gospel before the sixtieth year of his age. His father 
and mother, Richard and Alice Heywood, were both 
esteemed truly pious before marriage, and were much 
influenced by their attachment to true godliness in 
their choice of each other. It was a great privilege to 
be the son of such parents, and a great honour to be 
the parents of such a son. They had nine children ; 
John, who died in infancy, Hannah, Mary, John, 
Esther, Oliver, Alice, Nathaniel, and Josiah. Oliver 
Heywood was born March, 1629, in Little Lever, in 
the parish of Bolton, and was baptized at the parish 


church, the 29th of the same month. Respecting his 
birth-place, he observes : " it hath long been famous 
for glorious professors of the gospel, and powerful 
preachers ; and I take it as one of the great mercies of 
my life, that my nativity was in Goshen, under the 
star of Jacob's special influence."* 

When a child, though under considerable restraints in 
his father's house, he complains of having indulged his 
depraved nature in sinful acts when he had oppor- 
tunity. " When, says he, one of my sisters found fault 
with me for profane swearing, I replied, ' I had not 
sworn so much as a neighbour's child with whom I 
used to play ;' so foolish was I, and ignorant. How 
fond was I of trifles ! how backward to good exercises ! 
how forward to sinful practices ! how easily led to fol- 
low bad examples ! I may say, * childhood and youth 
are vanity ;' yea, next akin to brutish stupidity and 
atheistical blasjDhemy. * When I was a child, I spake 
as a child ;' yea, rather like a devil incarnate. O the 
desperate wickedness of my deceitful heart ! " But 
God, who had designs of mercy towards him, did not 
give him up to follow the corrupt inclinations of his 
heart. His pious parents, who kept a watchful and 
affectionate eye over him, frequently by love and awe 
checked his j^rogress in sin, and these endeavours on 
their part were succeeded by powerful convictions of 
conscience from the Spirit of God. " Though some," 
he remarks, " can make punctual and particular state- 

* The names of George Marsh and John Bradford have long been 
distinguished among the first and warmest friends of the Refor- 
mation in England, and occupy no mean rank in the noble army of 
martyrs. Thomas Lever, an eloquent and popular preacher in the 
reign of Edward VI, was the faithful companion of their hves, 
though not a fellow-sufferer with them in death. The two former 
were born in the adjoining parishes, and the lastmentioned in the 
same township as Mr. Heywood. 


ments of the method, time, manner, and means of 
their regeneration, yet for my own part, I cannot give 
any such account of circumstances ; though I am 
fully satisfied the Lord hath been at work with my soul 
both in childhood and since. Many a time have I 
gone alone and been distressed, then I have fallen off 
again to carelessness ; but being awakened after back- 
slidings, I have been so perplexed in spirit, that I have 
walked in the fields, sought where to weep, being ready 
to roar out in the bitterness of my soul, keeping up 
usually secret prayer and other duties. How often 
have I thought my condition in some respects to be 
worse than that of birds and beasts, trees and stones, 
because by sin, I am subject to eternal misery, of which 
they are not capable ! Sometimes I durst not pray, 
lest I should take God's name in vain. Thus I have 
had my inward troubles from fears and doubts. That 
which hath put me to a sad stand in my self-examin- 
ing work hath been, lest all those shakings should be 
the fruit of education and the common workings of the 
Spirit." These fears are the common experience of 
many who have been favoured with early religious 
instruction. Mr. Heywood was much encouraged 
under them, by hearing persons of whose conversion 
he was fully satisfied making the same complaints, by 
comparing his present experience and conduct with 
the past, and a persuasion that a man's safety does not 
depend on his being able to^ ascertain the precise 
period of his regeneration, but on his conformity to the 
imap-e of Christ. 

It was his happiness to have a mother willing and 
able to instruct him in the important concerns of his 
soul, and he thus affectionately and gratefully records 
her spiritual care over him : " I do with thankfulness 
to God remember that many a time my dear mother 


did zealovisly and familiarly press upon me truths of 
the greatest concern : as the preciousness of the soul — 
the misery of man by nature — the necessity of con- 
version — the brevity of life — and the importance of 
eternity. She used to take me along with her to hear 
Mr. Horrocks of Dean Church, Mr. Harrison of 
Walmsley, Mr. Johnson of Ellinborough, and some- 
times to Denton, to hear Mr. Angier. I confess I took 
much delight in waiting upon her abroad, but what 
my ends were I cannot tell, yet this I believe, that God 
disposed of it for much good to my poor soul." Being 
expected to give an account of the sermons he heard, 
he was accustomed to take notes at the time of preach- 
ing, and when his notes and memory failed, he looked 
to his kind mother for help. Sometimes she would 
converse with him when returning home, on the subject 
they had been hearing. By these means he was early 
habituated to pay attention to God's word, and early 
impressions of divine truth were made on his mind. 
How much he felt himself indebted to his pious mother 
as the instrument of his conversion, may be learned 
from what he says in her life, which he afterwards 
wrote : " I may say, I owe much to her as the instru- 
ment under God, of that saving good I at first received ; 
and I hope I shall never forget the instructions of a 
mother." When only fourteen years of age, he was 
admitted into the company of some religious persons, 
among whom were several young people, who met once 
a fortnight during the winter evenings for spiritual 
conference and prayer, and at those meetings he was 
called on in his turn to exercise his gifts. Like Nico- 
demus, he evaded publicity as much as possible, lest 
he should meet with reproach from some of his former 
associates ; but he received great encouragement from 
his parents and others. About this time, he first par- 


took of the ordinance of the Lord's supper at Bolton, 
and experienced the comfort of it, in the peaceful and 
happy frame of his mind both at the celebration and 

His inclination towards the ministry of the gospel, 
and his desire to engage in that sacred office were early 
discovered. " When a gracious old woman," he says, 
" observed that in reading, I had a strong voice, she 
asked me, if I would be a preacher ? my answer was, 
yes, if I may be a good one. I must confess, that since 
I had any understanding, I have held those in singular 
love and honour who have been pious ministers, and I 
have accounted those, wretched burdens of the earth 
and the worst of all men, who have been profane in 
that office ; and I am now more confirmed therein, that 
a wicked preacher doth most hurt among men, and 
will have the greatest torments amongst lost souls." 
Perceiving the bent of his mind, his friends gave him 
all the advantages of learning, the neighbourhood fur- 
nished ; but his progress at first was small. In refer- 
ence to this subject, he observes, " I have sometimes 
wondered that I was never stopped by my masters, 
examiners, or parents, in consequence of my natural 
weakness and unfitness for that work, for none was 
more unlikely to make any figure in that calling than 
I, though my desire was so much carried out towards 
the great employment. Whatever my ends were, the 
Lord knows, but I have cause to fear they were mostly 
selfish. I used my utmost care to have my weakness 
covered, that I might not be detected and diverted to 
some other calling, which I could never bear to think 
of, and for which indeed in many respects I was not 
fit. I now see, my God designed me for greater works 
and higher ends than worldly and cumbering trade, to 
which my mind was always much averse." After he 


had been with a variety of teachers, he was at length 
put under the care of Mr. Rudal, who excelled in no- 
thing but literature, by whose instructions he was en- 
abled to make considerable proficiency in human learn- 
ing. " I look upon it," he says, " as an observable pas- 
sage in my life, that I should in any degree suck the 
juice of the authors I read, and hear the instructions 
of masters that taught me, without woful contagion 
to my soul, from those pestilential vanities discoverable 
in both." 

Having arrived at the eighteenth year of his age, 
and received the benefit of public and private instruc- 
tion at home, it was resolved he should enter the 
University of Cambridge. Here he was placed under 
the care of Mr. Akhurst, who was considered a pious 
and exemplary man, though he afterwards embraced 
strange and extravagant notions, from which however 
he was reclaimed before his death. He was admitted 
at Trinity College July 9th, 1647 ; when Dr. Hill was 
the master. His excellent father, fully convinced of 
the importance of the step now taken, and aware of 
the dangers and temptations to which his youthful son 
would now be exposed, who had nev'er before been long 
absent from a parent's eye, gave him very affectionate 
and suitable advice. " When my dear and honoured 
father," he says, " left me at Cambridge, he wrote down 
some serious and grave instructions, which he left with 
me, besides many others which he and my affectionate 
mother had frequently inculcated in their several con- 
ferences ; they were such as these, ' My son, labour 
above all things to make your peace with God, by 
humbling your soul evening and morning, and oftener 
before him, that you may know that God hath begun 
a good work of grace in your heart. Be very frequent 
in reading the scriptures, with knowledge and under- 


standing, that you may be a good scribe, armed against 
temptation, and able to convince gainsayers. Labour 
to get every day some sanctified thoughts, and spiritual 
meditations, which will be a heavenly life and walking 
with God, and write them in a book entitled, " The 
Meditations of my Youth." Take short notes of every 
sermon you hear, and write some fairly over for your 
loving mother. Often remember how short and pre- 
cious your time is, and that upon it depends eternity. 
Keep a mean, as to society; neither be too solitary, lest 
you become melancholy ; nor too much desire company, 
lest you be drawn aside ; and, above all, beware of bad 
company, and seek out for good.' These rules I had 
often in my eye, and though, I confess I fell short in 
obedience, yet the outward part thereof I endeavoured 
to practise." 

While at Cambridge he had opportunities of attend- 
ing the powerful preaching of Mr. afterwards Dr. 
Hammond, preacher at St. Giles's church, whose minis- 
try was abundantly blessed to the good, not only of 
his parishioners, but also of the students in the several 
Colleges. " I must confess," Mr. H. says, " my heart 
was many a time very much affected under the ordi- 
nances at St. Giles's, and I cannot but with thankful- 
ness acknowledge him, (Dr. Hammond) as a profitable 
instrument of much good to my soul. Though the 
work might be wrought before, yet I am sure it was 
then much revived and cleared, and many mistakes re- 
moved. O with what a frame of spirit have I come 
from that place ! I usually met with a suitable search- 
ing word, that warmed my heart. I also met with 
some ingenuous and gracious scholars, with whom I had 
intimate familiarity, and was furthered by them in the 
ways of God. I look upon it as an admirable mercy, 
that I was preserved from those wicked and idle com- 


panions that might have prevailed for the utter un- 
doing of my soul and body, for my nature was too 
pliable, and my heart inclinable to sin and vanity. 
Though I have cause to lament loss of time there, 
which should have been a harvest for laying in trea- 
sures of human and divine knowledge, that I might as 
a good householder, bring out things new and old for 
benefiting the souls of others, had I been as careful as 
I might and ought ; yet it is a mercy that I lost not, 
but gained something for my soul ; for I have observed 
many persons very hopeful at their first arrival there, 
that went away empty of goodness, and instructed in 
artificial contrivances of wickedness. All the time I 
was in the University my heart was much deadened in 
philosophical studies, nor could I, as I desired, apply 
my mind so closely to human literature, though I prize 
learning above all sublunary excellencies ; I might 
have been more useful, had I improved my time better 
therein. My time and thoughts were most employed 
on practical divinity, and experimental truths were 
most vivifying to my soul : I preferred Perkins, Bolton, 
Preston, and Sibbs, far above Aristotle, Plato, &c." 

It was the happiness of Mr. H. to enjoy the frequent 
company and conversation of several pious youths then 
at College, who often met for mutual edification in 
spiritual and experimental religion. Among these was 
the Rev. Thos. Jollie,* afterwards ejected from Altham 
in Lancashire, with whom he formed an endeared 
friendship, which continued without any breach above 
fifty years. They were comjDanions through life, in tri- 
bulation, and labours, and both died in the seventieth 
year of their age, and within twelve months of each 
other. Mr. H. refers to the time they spent together at 

* See JMemoirs and Sermons of Mr. Thos. JoUie, in " Select 
Nonconformists' Remains/' by R. Slate. 


Cambridge, in a letter written to Mr. Jollie when they 
were not far from the end of their christian race, in 
which he says, " I do hereby give you my hearty thanks 
for your loving letters sent to me, which further en- 
dear my heart to you in friendship, which first com- 
menced at Cambridge, where you were pleased to take 
notice of, and take into your society, such a simple raw 
lad as O, H. I oft reflect with comfort and gratitude 
on the sweet opportunities we had in your garret- 
chamxber, and the heart-meltings under Mr. Hammond's 
ministry, with whom I conversed a fortnight before he 
died at Hackney, whom we shall never see more in this 

With the design of lessening his father's burden of 
supporting him at Cambridge, he endeavoured to obtain 
a scholarship, and most likely would have succeeded, 
but for a fever which attacked him with such violence 
that for a time he was not expected to live. Great at- 
tention was paid by those about him, and by the bless- 
ing of God he was restored. In this sickness he 
solemnly vowed, that if it pleased the Lord to spare 
his life, he would devote himself entirely to the service 
of the sanctuary. God was gracious to him, and, in 
dependance on divine grace, he performed his vow with 
the earnest desire, as he observes, " of promoting the 
glory of God in winning souls to Jesus Christ." Hav- 
ing lost this opportunity of obtaining a scholarship, and 
his brother Nathaniel by this time being also sent to 
the University, he remained only till he had taken his 
degree of Bachelor of Arts, and then returned to his 
father's house. Here he continued his studies, waiting 
an opportunity of residing, for a season, in some pious 
minister's family, before he fully entered on the public 
work on which his heart was fixed. 

He continued at home about half a year, and did not 


venture to engage in preaching, that passage being 
much on his mind: "Who is sufficient for these things?'* 
His first attempt to preach was in some obscure place 
near Preston, when on a visit to some friends in that 
neighbourhood, and, afterwards on a similar occasion 
at Carleton, and Skipton in Yorkshire. His uncle 
Francis Critchlaw, being on a visit to some friends at 
Coley, near Halifax, and finding they were destitute of 
a minister at that place, mentioned that he had a nephew, 
a young man just returned from Cambridge, who had 
lately commenced occasional preaching. Receiving a 
favourable account of him, the Chapelry deputed two 
persons to wait on him, and bring him over with them. 
Upon Mr. Heywood's return home from Skipton, he 
found them waiting for him at Bolton. He consented 
to go and supply for them one Lord's day,* and the 
people were so much pleased with his services, that be- 
fore he came away, they began to express a desire for 
his settlement among them. Such a proposition being 
quite unexpected at that time, and a way being opened 
for his admission into Mr. Angler's family at Denton, 
to receive instructions in religious knowledge from that 
holy man, he was unable to give them an answer, but 
promised to supply them another day. Having a previ- 
ous engagement to go into Wales, on a visit to his uncle 
Ralph Critchlaw, who resided at Wrexham, and was 
at that time a justice of the peace, several Lord's days 
intervened before he could perform his engagement at 
Coley. During this period another person had been 
engaged as a supply, with whom the people had nearly 
agreed for his continuance, only some refused their con- 
sent, expecting Mr. H. would fulfil his promise of a 
second visit. Accordingly he went, and they renewed 
their solicitations. Several days were set apart for 
* This was about Micliaeljnas, in 1650. 

16 I.IFK OF THE llEV. (). HEVWOOI). 

seeking God by prayer, and for consulting friends on 
this important subject ; and, on Nov. 26th, 1650, in 
the 22nd year of his age, he agreed to supply the place 
for six months. 

At the close of this period, he was earnestly pressed 
to accept an invitation to Houghton Chapel, in Lan- 
cashire, to succeed good Mr. Horrocks, who was lately 
deceased. This situation had many attractions : it 
was not far from his native place and pious kindred ; 
it was a place where his income would be greater than 
at Coley, and his esteemed and reverend friend, Mr. 
Tilsley, of Dean Church, was veiy urgent in persuad- 
ing him to comply. But he had now been a sufficient 
length of time at Coley, to gain the affections of the 
people, and to entertain pleasing hopes of usefulness ; 
and therefore concluded it was the will of God he 
should remain there. His decision was honourable to 
his character, a presage of his future conduct, and a 
happy earnest that as he sought the glory of God, and 
not his own ease and comfort in his settlement, so God 
would not refuse him the blessed reward he desired — 
the conversion of many souls to Christ. Had his peo- 
ple rightly estimated his conduct in his determination 
to abide with them, when so powerful a temptation 
was laid in his way, at a time too, when he could have 
complied without violating the principles of justice or 
honour, (his engagement with, them being fulfilled,) it 
would have disarmed them of that opposition he after- 
wards met with, from some of their number. If a 
minister cheerfully makes sacrifices for the good of his 
people, they ought in return to make his comfort and 
welfare objects of their peculiar attention. 


History of Coley — Ministers at Coley — Commeticement of Mr. Hey- 
wood's Ministry there — His Ordination — liejlections on^ his Set- 
tlement at Coley — His Lodgings — Sickness — Disappoinltnents — 
Marriage — Birth of' his Son John — Parental Affection — Birth of 
his Son Eliezcr — Death of Mr. Heywood's Mother — Preparation 
for Troubles — Neglect of the Lord's Supper and Discipline at 
Coley — Ordinances restored — His Joy on the Occasion — Opposition 
— Public Calamities — Cheshire Rising — Birth and Death of Mr. 
Heywood's Son Nathaniel — Conduct of Mr. Heywood's Opponents 
— His I?ivitatiofi to Preston — The Restoration of Charles II — 
Death of Mrs. Hey wood — A faithful Servant. 

Coley chapel, to which Mr. Heywood was unani- 
mously invited, as the scene of his stated labours, and 
in the neighbourhood of which he spent above fifty 
years in the service of his Master, is situated in the 
parish of Halifax. The attachment a person naturally 
feels to a place in which he has spent the principal part 
of his days, and where he beholds on every hand the 
memorials of various circumstances connected with the 
most interesting seasons of his life, induced the subject 
of this memoir to draw up a paper, entitled, " Parti- 
culars respecting Coley, collected by O. Heywood." 
The former part was v/ritten in the year 1674, and 
the latter, in 1(595. The following are extracts: — 

" Tradition tells us, there were two sisters, never 
married, that lived at Priestley Green, having large 
estates, who built the two chapels, Coley and Lightcliffe, 
a mile distant from each other, and both standing in 
Hipperholme township ; but in what year, or by what 

VOL. I. c 


inducements they were influenced I cannot learn. Be- 
ing built in popish times, possibly they were founded 
in superstition ; but the work was good, and it is not 
our province to judge of motives at this distance. 
This I take notice of, there has been a vast discrepancy 
between these two chapels, considering their vicinity, 
both as to the ministers of the word and the manners 
of the inhabitants. They have scarcely ever had a good 
minister atLightcliffe, since the Reformation, except one 
Mr. Blanks, about sixty years ago ; and in the late 
times of liberty, Mr. Cudworth was about a year with 
them, but they hated him and soon got him out : the 
rest have been generally loose, tippling preachers; and 
like priest, like people. The whole chapelry is much 
addicted to profaneness, so that Lightcliffe and Oaken- 
shaw have been called Sodom and Gomorrah, and I 
have scarcely ever known any serious people live there. 
When I have gone by the place, I have often thought 
of the sons of the prophets, saying to Elisha, concern- 
ing Jericho, ' Behold, I pray thee, the situation of this 
city is pleasant, as my lord seeth : but the water is 
naught, and the ground barren,' 2 Kings ii. 19- This 
I may apply to the waters of the sanctuary and to the 
people, bad and barren, otherwise the place is very plea- 
sant and fruitful. Comparing these two chapelries, sa 
near together, I have thought of Amos iv. 7, ' I have 
caused it to rain upon one city, and caused it not to 
rain upon another city : one piece was rained upon, 
and the piece whereupon it rained not, withered.' I 
could tell sad stories from my own knowledge about 
ministers and people at Lightcliffe, but my work is not 
about them, therefore I shall forbear." 

" To return to Coley, which has its name from 
Coley-Hall, near an ancient seat of the tenure com- 
monly called, St. John of Jerusalem. All the houses 


of this tenure are to have a cross set up on the end 
of them, or else they are fineable at the court. Coley- 
Hall was a priory in popish times. The ministers 
at Coley chapel, since the Reformation in Queen 
Elizabeth's days, were the following :'^ — 

" 1. After a reader called Sir Adam, Mr. Nichols 
commenced preaching : he was a good scholar and an 
able expositor, and did good by catechising and ex- 
pounding. His successor acknowledged he had fol- 
lowed him in two places, and that he had laid a good 
foundation of knowledge among the people ; yet he 
was addicted to drinking and company. He would 
say to his companions, you must not heed me except 
when I am three feet above the earth, that is, when I 
am in the pulpit. He removed from Coley to Thornton 
chapel, in Bradford parish. 2. The next was one Mr. 
Gibson, a pious man and an able preacher. How long 
he was minister here, I cannot tell ; he left some plate 
to the chapel with his name on it. 3. Mr. Ralph 
Marsden was a godly, orthodox, and zealous minister, 
but much opposed by several professors in this place, 
who never rested till they got him out, He then be- 
came curate at Ashton-under-Lyne, and was followed 
by some heavy afflictions in the latter end of his days. 
4. After Mr. Marsden there were several that remained 
a very short time. The next settled minister was 
Mr. Robt. Hurst, born at Ribchester. His brother 
was vicar of Leigh, and was turned out by the act of 
Uniformity, and afterwards lived at Macclesfield in 
Cheshire. This choice young man was at Coley, seven 
or eight years, but fell into a consumption, took his 
solemn leave in the chapel, and told the people he had 
spent his strength with them, and was able to preach 
no more : there were many tears shed at parting. 

G 2 


He pined away, had his motlier with him, whose 
breasts he sucked as long as he was able, and then 
died, leaving a sweet savour behind him, both of sound 
doctrine and holy life : he was much lamented. 5. Mr. 
Denton succeeded. He was a good minister of Jesus 
Christ, affluent in his worldly circumstances, and had 
several children. He continued here about seven 
years ; times were sharp, the bishops being in their 
height. In his time came out the book for sports on 
the Sabbath days. He saw he could not do what was 
required, feared further persecution, and therefore took 
the opportunity of going into New England. He re- 
turned to Old England about 1659, and lived and died 
in Essex. In his time the chapel at Coley was enlarg- 
\ . ed. 6. Came Mr. Andrew Latham, a genuine Chris- 

tian, born near Prescot in Lancashire : he was but a 
young man, yet very hopeful and pious. By his mar- 
riage he gave offence, but he soon and suddenly lost 
his wife. The first time he preached after her death 
was from 1 Cor, vii. 29, 30. Then came on the wars, 
and he fled with others when the Earl of Newcastle 
lay with his forces about Halifax. He settled at Bury 
in Lancashire, at which place he died. On his death- 
bed, he earnestly desired to see one seal to his ministry: 
and God at last brought one, a j)oor woman in Bury 
parish, who gave him great content and made him 
bless God for that mercy. He was congregational in 
his principles before he died, though he had been other- 
wise ; but he never gathered a church, nor acted as an 
Independent : he was a holy man and a useful instru- 
ment. I received the Lord's supper from his hands at 
Bolton church in the Presbyterian wa}% not long before 
he died, and methouglit his garments shone as lie came 
to me. He was a plain and powerful preacher : I be- 


lieve God did much more good by his ministry than 
he knew. I suppose he was at Coley nine or ten years. 

7. Came Mr. Giles Clayton from Altham in Lancashire, 
a holy man and serious preacher ; though not of emi- 
nent parts, yet desirous of doing good. He was be- 
tween forty and fifty years of age when he came, and 
continued four or five years. He died and was buried 
at Halifax. He was succeeded at Altham by good 
Mr. Jollie : he made some attempts to set up discipline 
here, and to enjoy the sealing ordinance, but could not 
effect it, though he was resident in the proper season 
for that purpose, in the time of the Long Parliament. 

8. The next was Mr. Cudworth, a good scholar, a holy 
man, (as was hoped) and a good preacher ; but so ex- 
ceedingly melancholy, that it obscured his parts. He 
was not at Coley above a year. Then came this poor, 
inconsiderable worm, and God took me from my public 
work by the Act of Uniformity." 

" There were several attempts to bring a preacher to 
Coley after I was turned out : and some have been for 
a season. 1. Mr. Fisden. 2. Mr. Pattison, whose real 
name was White. 3. Mr. Hoole, who continued there 
about five years. 4. Mr. Moore, of Baildon, who staid 
about half a year. 5. Mr. Furman, who remained 
about a year. 6. I^Ir. Bramley, a young man born at 
Sowerby, but he soon went away. 7. Mr. Andrew 
Lothian, a Scotchman : he came Aug. 9, 1674, and 
died Dec. 6, 1675. 8. Mr. Hovey came May 1, 1676. 
He was a man of ability, and a high conformist, but 
took his leave Nov. 27, 1681. 9. Mr. Lambert, for- 
merly lecturer at Halifax, supplied for them at Coley 
about six months : when some requested Dr. Hook to 
let them have Mr. Hoole of Bradfield ; but he would 
not consent, saying, he would rather have Mr. -Hey- 
wood. They said with all their hearts ; and some 


came to desire me to preach ; * but my friends did no 
judge it expedient. 10. Mr. Timothy Ellison born at 
Prescot, whose parents used to receive my brother to 
preach in their house : he came July 23, 1682, and 
continued to this present year 1695. He prays well, 
preaches zealously, and it is said, lives honestly. The 
people flock to him and are much affected. Blessed be 
God ! O that he may be of some use to them." 

The secret, invisible, but powerful hand of God was 
engaged in bringing Mr. Heyv\'ood to Coley. " I can- 
not but wonder," he says, " what the heads and mem- 
bers of this congregation saw in me, so affectionately to 
desire, and unanimously to choose a young lad of 
twenty-one years of age to be their minister, that I do 
not remem.ber the opposition of any one person, rich or 
poor, to my election, though another had been tampered 
with between my first supplying and my engagement 
with them. I cannot also but wonder how my heart 
came to be persuaded to it, considering my aversion to 
settle in this hilly country ; but God led me with a 
strong hand and deceived me into it, and I am willingly 
deceived, though contrary to the solicitations of another 
people in Lancashire to whom I was more inclined." 
Conscious of the vast importance of the work in which 

* This was not the only time that attempts were made to ob- 
tain his return to Coley Chapel. " Jan. 10, 1676," he says, " there 
vv'as a meeting of the townsmen, at which time, E. S. had prepared a 
paper, and presented it to the inhabitants, expressive of their de- 
sire that 1 might preach at the chapel He requested those pre- 
sent to subscribe it, which they did very freely, some of wh=)m 
have neither heard nor owned me almost these fourteen years. 
This is wonderful, whatever may be the issue. They now profess 
they will either have me or none at tlie chapel, and if I may not 
preach it shall be vacant. This is strange all things considered, 
that they should own a poor, despised, persecuted minister, cast 
out as a vessel wherein is no pleasure. Blessed be God." 


he had engaged, and deeply sensible of his insufficiency 
for the right and successful discharge of the duties of 
the ministerial office, he entered upon it with trembling 
steps. His conduct at this season peculiarly commends 
itself to the imitation of young ministers. He was 
very earnest and frequent in his addresses to the God 
of all grace for those supplies which he needed. When 
walking abroad, his heart was often engaged in devout 
ejaculations, so that he called many places, " Bethels, 
Peniels, or Bochim." When in his study, he was very 
diligent in laying up a store of useful knowledge, and 
very attentive to his preparations for the pulpit. Nor 
did he neglect the important work of heart-preparation. 
Many were his tears and prayers and self-examinations 
before he ascended the pulpit, and having been much 
in communion with God in secret, no wonder that his 
face shone when he appeared before the people. The 
first-fruits of an abundant harvest of souls were given 
him to encourage him in the commencement of his work. 
When he had been employed at Coley nearly two 
years, he thought it his duty publicly to recognize his 
pastoral and ministerial engagements by the solemn 
rite of ordination. The Presbyterian mode of church 
government was then established in England, and he 
made application to the second classis of Lancashire 
ministers who usually assembled at Bury. The rea- 
sons of his application to them in preference to others 
were, because Bury was not far from his native place, 
and because the ministers were those to whom he was 
personally known, and for whom he entertained a great 
esteem. The day appointed for this solemnity, was 
Aug. 4, 1652 ; and the persons engaged in that work 
were the Rev. John Tilsley, of Dean Church, Wm. 
Harpur, Peter Bradshaw, Jon. Scholefield, of Heywood 
Chapel, Tobias Furniss, of Bury, Thos. Pyke, of Rat- 


cliffe Church, Heniy Peiidlebuiy, of Holcome Chapel, 
Rich. Goodwin, of Bolton, and Robt. Bath, of Roch- 
dale. He had previously been carefully examined as 
to his literary attainments, had disputed the question, 
An Pasdobaptismus sit licitus ? whether infant baptism 
be lawful ? He had also preached before his examiners 
on Rom. x. 15, "How shall they preach except they 
be sent?" It was a day much to be remembered, and 
the recollection afforded him pleasure a long time 
after. " It hath often," he says, " been much satis- 
faction to my spirit in the midst of my troubles, to re- 
view my regular entrance into the ministry. I had 
the unanimous call and consent of my people, manifested 
by subscribing their names ; and some aged men sent 
as delegates ,to represent the whole, accompanying me 
to Bury, where by fasting and prayer, and imposition 
of hands, I was set apart to the important office. I 
confess I had many sad thoughts and fears about the 
time of my »ordination, not so much respecting the 
the temporary exercises required as preparatory there- 
to ; but principally, my great insufficiency for that high 
and holy calling. Such an impression it had on me, 
(though I knew not the tithe of duties and difficulties 
of what I have since felt,) that I should have been 
completely deterred and discouraged therefrom, had not 
the outward and inward call from heaven, the concern- 
ment of God's glory and the church's necessity, the in- 
tentions of my parents, the convictions of my conscience, 
the dedication of myself to God by former vows, and 
iny putting my hand to the plough, prevailed with me 
and pressed me to this service. God was pleased to 
conduct me comfortably through the usual exercises, 
mightily to enlarge the hearts of his people in prayer, 
and graciously to afford assistance to all that were em- 
ployed in the work of that day. Mr. Tilsley excellently 


snd profitably gave the exhortation ; and tiiere were 
many tears poured forth." 

Having thus solemnly, publicly, and fully entered 
on his pastoral work at Coley, Mr. H. reviewed his 
situation, and the providences that led to that con- 
nexion in the following manner : " O what riches of 
grace are here ! that thou, who art one of the greatest 
of sinners and least of saints, not worthy to be called 
(much less to be) a saint, should be a minister, an am- 
bassador of the King of kings, and be entrusted with 
the most precious pearl that was ever communicated 
to the sons of men ! But how camest thou into so 
high an office ? Art thou not an intruder ? I hope 
not. I came into it in a lawful way, according to 
God's word. Though the window was open, and every 
one might enter that had a mind, yet I crept not in 
thereat ; but entered by the door of an internal call, 
inclining, disposing, and, in some measure, qualifying 
me thereunto ; and also of aii external call from the 
church, moving, selecting, and designing me for that 
function. Here is mercy upon mercy ! To be a mi- 
nister, and a lawful minister of the gospel, to have to 
deal with souls (in an authoritative way) as having 
commission from Jesus Christ, my Lord and Master ! 
Well, but where art thou ? Amongst an affectionate 
people, from whom thou hast had a general call and 
invitation. They are a willing people, ready to lay 
out themselves according to their power. They are 
generally an intelligent people too, at least, in compa- 
rison with many in other places : the foundation is 
laid, and thou hast to build thereupon. Ah, who am 
I to succeed so many skilful and faithful predecessors? 
They are a tractable and attentive people that give 
good heed unto the word, and do many things by way 
of outward conformity. Thou mightest have been 


amongst a humoursome, self-conceited, and presumptu- 
ous people, that would have shown their teeth against 
thy sharp and plain reproofs. Though thy means are 
short, compared with others, yet thou hast a better 
supply by thy people's due respect and warm affection. 
I had rather have my people's hearts enlarged towards 
me, than their purses opened for me. O what a mercy 
is here ! it is as much as thou canst wish, and more 
than thou deservest. I have been in harmony with 
them insomuch, that to my knowledge, I have not 
fallen out with great or small in the congregation for 
two whole years and upwards : this is a choice mercy, 
O bless thy God for it, and ascribe it not to thyself. 
Thou art also amongst a people, by whom thou mayest 
benefit thy soul in holy conference, secret heart-dis- 
coveries, and especially in private days of humiliation ; 
for this place hath been famous for professors, I must 
confess, indeed, God hath deprived thee of some valu- 
able pillars, but he seems to supply their places by 
young people. Here indeed is the chief of many mer- 
cies : to have some beginnings of conversion, some in- 
quiries after heaven, some prickings of heart, this is 
worth all ; of other things I have enough. If I have 
suitable fruit of my poor labours, and occasion some 
glory to God, it were no matter if I beg my bread from 
door to door among them : it is better to gain one soul 
to Christ than gain a world. Ah, my soul, will it not be 
a joyful time when I shall be able to say : * Lo, here 
am I, and the children thou hast given me ?' Thou 
hast some credit amongst thy people, but then thou 
shalt have credit with saints, and angels, even with 
Christ himself, and shalt shine as a bright and beau- 
tiful star in the holy and happy firmament !" 

The first three or four years of his ministry at 
Coley, he lodged with a pri^'ate family, where he 


learned some important and useful lessons, from the 
character and disposition of the master of the house. 
*' Though very kind and courteous to me," he observes, 
he exhibited an epitome of carnality and worldliness. 
He became a notable school-book and teacher to me 
in the infancy of my ministry; in conversing with 
whom, I got much insight into, and was well furnished 
for answering, those carnal pleas and cavils of mis- 
guided souls, which otherwise I should have been un- 
acquainted with. I had also not a little help there 
in the society of some serious, humble, faithful souls 
that I found in the family, especially a servant-man, 
a good old disciple, with whom I have taken sweet 
counsel-" In a soliloquy, entitled, " Good out of Evil," 
he thus expresses himself on this subject : " How well 
hath God wrought for thee, O my soul, in many things 
which thou hadst thought had been against thee ; so 
that thou hast had cause to bless him for crossing thy 
designs, and refusing to answer thy desires ! A carnal, 
sensual, profane head of a family in human apprehen- 
sion might have been thy bane ; but through God's 
mercy it hath contributed much unto thy advan- 
tage. Although the Lord hath not succeeded thy 
endeavours for the conversion of this poor man, yet, 
hast thou not been much bettered by living in this 
family ? Thou didst find some holy, self-denying 
souls, with whom thou hast had sweet communion, 
of whom thou hast received counsel and comfort in 
conference, praying, and secret exercises, by which 
means, thou hast been delivered from occasions and 
temptations to sin. O the benefit of good com- 
pany ! Perhaps thou mightest have been overcome in 
other families, to the grief of thy heart, the discredit 
of religion, and the dishonour of thy God. Though 
thou hast not wrought upon the head of the family, 


thou hast been instrumental of good to inferiors. 
Hath not conversing with this bewildered creature 
been a profit to thy soul ? Hast thou not hereby dis- 
covered more of Satan's methods, that thou mightest 
oppose them ? Hast thou not been more acquainted 
with the sinful reasonings of a carnal heart, that thou 
mightest better answer them ? Hast thou not disco- 
vered sinners' subterfuges, false rests, and castles in 
the air, that thou in ay est demolish them ? Tell me, 
O my soul, are not these observable preparatives for 
thy future employment ? Hath not this been a good 
way to convince thee of the insufficiency of the means 
itself for conversion, without the concurrent assistance 
of divine grace ? From his o\^^n confession, my host, 
unhappy man, hath been terrified sometimes by close 
and particular applications ; yet to the grief of my 
heart he hath been worse afterwards, which hath 
made me say, not theoretically, but experimentally, 
that God alone doth all, and that it is the work of om- 
nipotence to convert a sinner to God. This hath made 
thee to depend upon divine influence and the saving 
efficacy of the Spirit to accompany the word. Hath 
not this also been an occasion of thy tender compas- 
sion to poor, wandering prodigals, and impenitent sin- 
ners ? If thou hadst always conversed with believers, 
(which still is the happiest thing in the world, next to 
communion with God,) thy bowels would not thus 
have yearned over sinners, nor prayed so earnestly 
for them, nor sought so seriously for their recovery. 
God saw this was a good means to try thy faithfulness: 
blessed be God for using any means to such an end. 
Hast thou not, my soul, by this means, learned to bless 
God more sensibly and feelingly for his distinguishing 
love? What made thy God to set his love on thee 
and not on him ? ^Vas it for thy worth or dignity ? 


Did he foresee thy nature would be milder, thy parts 
brighter, thy acceptance of him readier, or thy service 
for him more and better ? O no ! it was free grace 
alone that made the difference. Thou wast cut out of 
the same cloth for similarity, hewn out of the same 
rock for hardness, flowedst out of the same fovmtain 
for pollution, and wouldst have been worse than he 
had not free grace stepped in. Hath it not also had 
some influence on thy practice ? Hast thou not carried 
thyself more circumspectly for fear of setting the least 
bad example, not knowing how speedily it would be 
improved to further profaneness ? Hath it not made 
thee, O my soul, more weary of this world and more 
willing to be with God ? O trying time now, but joy- 
ful time (or rather eternity) then. The owner of my 
chamber here may be a Nabal, or son of Belial ; but 
the builder and master of that city is God, who hath 
provided (free cost) mansions to praise him in for ever." 
When Mr. Nath. Hey wood had left Cambridge, and 
had come to supply at Illingworth Chapel, the two 
brothers engaged a small house and imited in their 
housekeeping expences. They had not lived many 
months together in this habitation, before Mr. O. H. 
was taken so ill one sabbath in the pulpit, that he was 
obliged to break off the service abruptly and return 
home. He was attacked by a severe fever which con- 
fined him to the house about three weeks : indeed he 
was sick nigh unto death; but God had mercy on him, 
and not on him only but on the church also, for he 
had but just entered into that sphere of usefulness for 
which he afterwards became so eminent. The state of 
his mind under affliction cannot be better described 
than in his own language ; " How is it with thee now, 
O my soul, when the casket that keeps this precious 
jewel is so cracked ? What say est thou, trembling in- 


habitant, when thy house begins to fail, and the founda^ 
tions of this tabernacle of clay are felt to totter ? art 
thou troubled ? thy head was sick through a blind and 
perverse understanding, and thy heart faint through 
weakness in grace and strength of sinning ; now thy 
head doth ache with pain, and thy heart is sick with a 
grievous distemper. God will retaliate with a judg- 
ment suitable to the offence. Acknowledge the justice 
of awarding suffering according to thy sin, and admire 
God's goodness that it is not more severe ; praise him 
for his gentleness and pity ; inprove this blessed op- 
portunity to get thy heart nearer heaven and fiu'ther 
-» from the world ; long for thy house from above, and 
wait for it till it come, and watch over thy heart. The 
alarm is sounded, the signal is given, therefore lay 
down thy weapons, surrender thyself as the Lord's 
prisoner, he will not harm, but deliver thee. Is not a 
happy deliverance better than a cruel slavery ? Fear 
not God's call, it is but to bring thee to himself, and 
canst thou be in an evil place when in God's presence, 
who is the perfection of happiness ? But stay, he 
comes not yet, thy time is not yet expired, thy sun 
is not yet set ; knowest thou that ? Granted ; but will 
it therefore follow that he will not come at all ? Will 
it be any disadvantage to thee to be ready long before 
death come? surely not, but the contrary. What 
comfort will redound to thee thereby, and what glory 
to God ! Thou wilt not stand in constant fear, nor be 
affrighted then by the symptoms of death's near ap- 
proach, but triumph in the thought thereof, although 
the manner may be unpleasant to the flesh. If thou 
couldst but look above or beyond death and the grave, 
and fix thy thoughts upon thy rich inheritance in re- 
version, thy life would be an Eden, and thy death a 
Goshen." The peculiar support he enjoyed in this 


sickness, derived from his lively faith in gospel pro- 
mises, made him even to long for the time of his dis- 
solution, when his hopes would be exchanged for pos- 
session. " My soul desired death," he says, " rather 
than life, or rather a better life by means of natural 
death. O what would I have given that I might have 
sinned no more, but departed into that blessed and 
blissful communion with God of which my soul had a 
little transient foretaste. I was loth to be turned in- 
to the world again ; yet I was freely willing to submit 
to the disposing will of my gracious God ; and it seems 
he had yet some further work for me to do." 

The impressions made on his mind by this visitation 
were not transient. He had called upon God in the 
day of trouble, and having obtained deliverance, he re- 
solved to glorify the God of his mercies. In his afflic- 
tion he had used the language of prayer, and having re- 
ceived answers of peace, he then employed the language 
of praise. After his recovery he wrote the following 
record of God's kindness, and his own gratitude : " It 
was my God that in love brought me both into and out 
of the pit of affliction, and cast all my sins behind his 
back. It was he that considered the low estate of his 
servant, delivered me from the gates of the grave, and 
rescued me from the king of terrors. It is he that 
hath preserved me, and hath again brought me to walk 
before the Lord in the land of the living, while he hath 
sent others to their long home who were as strong as I. 
It was he that gave me favour in the sight of so many, 
and sent so many Christians and others to visit me, 
not empty-handed, nor empty-hearted. It was he that 
put it into the minds of his people to commend my 
state to God at the lowest ebb, when I could do so lit- 
tle. It was he that answered me in the day when I 
cried, and strengthened me in my soul. It was he that 


made my bed in my sickness, mitigated my pains, and 
gave me all the helps of creature-comforts that my 
heart could desire. It was he that restored my health 
when I said, * I shall see man no more,' I shall never 
stand up in my pulpit again to speak to my affectionate 
people. But God hath brought me once more into the 
great congregation, where I may shew forth his loving- 
kindness, and tell what great things he hath done for 
me. ' The living, the living shall praise thee as I do 
this day.' ' Bless the Lord, O my soul ; and all that 
is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the Lord, O 
my soul, and forget not all his benefits ; who forgiveth 
all thine iniquities ; who healeth all thy diseases ; who 
redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee 
with loving-kindness and tender mercies.' All the 
ways of the Lord are mercy and truth ; in faithfulness 
did he afflict me, and in loving-kindness did he deliver 
me : heaven and earth are full of his praise. O my 
soul, bless thou the Lord ! But what impressions of 
devotion hath this affliction left upon thee? What 
profit hast thou obtained thereby ? What fruit of holi- 
ness proceedeth fiom this tree of sorrow ? What duties 
doth it make thee observe ? What lust doth it make 
thee mortify ? Was not the time of affliction filled with 
divine consolations and joys, and hast thou not more 
liberty now, and better opportunity for God's work ? 
Must God be minded at no other time but when his 
rod is over thee and his hand upon thee ? Wilt thou 
seek him early and earnestly in thine affliction and not 
in prosperity ? For shame, my soul, be not so dull ; 
away with thy mourning righteousness : j^erform thy 
resolutions and pay thy vows. Acknowledge God's 
care, and thy fears, as Hezekiah did in his well com- 
posed song after his recovery, or with Jonah after he 
had escaped from the belly of hell. Lay up experience 


against the time to come of God's interposition in 
answering requests, fulfilling promises, accomplishing 
his designs, discovering his presence, and keeping thee 
from sinning notoriously or sinning cowardly under 
this affliction. ' Tribulation worketh patience ; and 
patience, experience ; and experience, hope : and hope 
maketh not ashamed.' It is a miserable thing to lose 
the benefit of affliction. Improve it as one of the 
talents for which thou must give a strict account ; lay 
it out to thy Lord and Master's best advantage. 
Learn to trust more confidently in God, to delight in 
him more, to walk more closely with him, to watch 
more over thy heart, to run more cheerfully in his 
ways, to do his will more angelically, to carry thyself 
more circumspectly, to exercise grace more vigorously, 
to resist against temptations more manfully, and to 
conquer spiritual enemies more triumphantly." 

Mr. Heywood was now about twenty-six years of 
age, and had remained in a single state : but he did 
not think it good that man should be alone, and there- 
fore had been some time in search of an agreeable com- 
panion for life. In so important an undertaking, he 
was resolved to act with prudence, and, as far as he 
could judge, according to the will of God. "After 
I had continued here a considerable time," he says, 
" I looked out for a suitable helpmeet. I was directed 
to divers, and then stopped in my progress. Many 
times I had good hopes that I was near a conjugal 
relation, but was disappointed by some strange means 
or other. This was no small trouble to me, but was 
the means of humbling my heart, and sending me 
more frequently and earnestly to the throne of grace. 
I was often afraid of missing my way, and as often 
begged direction, pleading this promise, that God will 
teach the humble his way, and the meek he will guide 

VOL. 1. D 


ill judgment. I desired not to follow my own fancy, 
but God's counsel. Such observable providences as I 
noticed about this time concerning these things, did 
mightily prevail upon me to wean me from the world 
and set my heart on heaven : yea, I have been con- 
vinced thereby of the deceit of strong impressions and 
persuasions that such things would come to pass." 
These disappointments and delays he endeavoured to 
improve to some spiritual advantage in a Soliloquy, 
entitled, " Hope Deferred," in which he thus expresses 
himself: "O my soul, set faith at work and let prayers 
fly and rend the heavens : it may be, God will be 
moved to pity. If he withdraw, yet let him not 
depart ; if he depart, follow as hard as faith winged 
with love can fly, and then he will return and leave a 
blessing behind : if not, yet wait a while and keep in 
God's own way, and he shall strengthen thy heart. 
Holy patience has a glorious recompense, and in the 
close thou shalt not lose a jot, for thy reward is with 
the Lord. Beware of setting thy heart on an outward 
mercy. God sees not as man seeth, nor doth he bring 
to pass what poor, ignorant souls desire, but what his 
infinite wisdom thinks best. Be not thy own carver. 
Follow God's direction, and then thou mayest be sure 
of his guardian care. Limit not the Holy One of 
Israel, by setting bounds to his beneficence or thy pa- 
tience. Long-sought and dear bought mercies are 
sweet and sure mercies. Ponder thy own ingra- 
titude for favours conferred, and check thy murmur- 
ing for favours denied. Set thy judgment at work as 
well as thy will, and let understanding act its part as 
well as affections. Wilt thou follow a painted shadow, 
and set thy heart upon a little glittering dust ? Wilt 
thou be overcome with a piece of gilded clay, and ad- 
mire a skin-deep beauty, which can be easily converted 


into deformity, and will ere long return to dust and 
corruption ? But, thou wilt say, there was something 
more than this which was the ground of my affection, 
namely, a discovery of glory within and excellency of 
God's image stamped upon the soul. Suppose it were 
so, (as thou hast good ground to believe,) may not 
another be found as desirable ? Thine eyes are dim, 
and thou dost not certainly know what is, and what is 
not a blessing. Moderate thy desires then, bridle thy 
affections, and put a curb upon thy roving imagin- 
ations. Come, my soul, let me lead thee in a rational 
way. Stay awhile and wait God's time, for he is 
waiting to be gracious to thee, when thou art prepared 
for the mercy. He will meet thee in his own time 
and way, and when it comes, it will be the surest and 
most seasonable blessing that ever thou hadst in thy 
life. In the mean time, if God cause thee to live more 
to him, and ha^^o' more communion with him, it will 
be equivalent to the blessing itself." 

If hope was for a season deferred, it was not finally 
disappointed ; and if Mr. H. was not successful, in some 
instances, according to his wishes, it was because a 
greater blessing was in reserve. Miss Elizabeth 
Angier, who had enjoyed the advantages of a pious 
education, and had early been the subject of religious 
experience, was well known for the amiableness of her 
natural disposition, and her personal accomplishments. 
It was the happiness of Mr. H. not only to become ac- 
quainted with her, but to entertain an affection which 
originated in the purest motives, and met with the 
sincere approbation of all the parties concerned. He 
had long been accustomed to venerate the piety and 
talents of the Rev. John Angier, and esteemed it a 
peculiar honovir and privilege to be admitted into the 
relationship of son-in-law to this man of God. It 



was Mr, Angler's opiuion, that marriage should not 
only be publicly solemnized, but that it should be pre- 
ceded by a mutual and religious contract. His daugh- 
ter and Mr. H. therefore were pledged to each other, 
at the close of a solemn day of prayer and fasting, in 
Mr. Angler's study, when Mr. Nathaniel Rathband 
preached from Matt. i. 18, " His mother Mary was 
espoused to Joseph." This was about a month before 
their marriage, which took place at Denton Chapel, 
April 25th 1655, on which occasion, Mr. Harrison, of 
Ashton, preached from Eph. v. 31. Mr. Angier, was 
unable to attend the ceremony in person, being at 
that time indisposed by an attack of the gout, with 
which he was frequently troubled. Nearly a hundred 
persons were afterwards entertained in a decent and 
sober manner at his table ; for he said, " he loved to 
have a marriage like a marriage," taking for his ex- 
ample, the attendance of Christ at -ehe marriage at 
Cana, in Galilee. 

Mr. H. was much attached to his amiable partner, 
not only on account of her personal excellencies, but 
because of her pious relatives. " She was not only re- 
ligiously descended for many generations," he observes, 
** but her immediate parent was, and is, a distinguished 
preacher in these northern counties ; so gracious, faith- 
ful, and successful a minister is Mr. Angier, that he is 
universally reverenced, none having occasion to open 
their mouths against such a man. It exceedingly 
pleaseth me to think that the partner of my cares and 
enjoyments is the daughter of a gospel preacher, whose 
employment I prize more highly for the greatness of 
the work and the transcendency of the object than the 
highest preferment in the world. What mercies, O 
my soul, hath God bestowed on thee, both spiritual 
and temporal, in answer to thy poor distracted prayers. 


Among the rest this is not the least. A prudent wife is 
from the Lord ; yea, he that finds a wife finds a good 
thing and obtaineth favour of the Lord. This favour 
God hath showed me, he hath given me the desire of 
mine eyes, the comjjanion of my youth. But this 
blessing as bestowed on me hath many attendant cir- 
cumstances that heighten my comfort and gratitude. 

1. It was given me as an answer to prayer, which 
multiplies the favour and gives it a sweeter relish. 

2. It came in God's own time, which is always the 
best and most seasonable. My impatient spirit had 
fixed limits to the Lord, and I was loth to stay his time 
and wait his choice; but now I see God's time is better 
than mine, and his perfect wisdom better than my per- 
fect folly. 3. It came in God's way. My wife is not 
carried off by me, but sent by God. How much sor- 
row would a clandestine marriage have produced ! 
Blessed be my God, all parties were not only satisfied 
but rejoiced. 4. God hath given me the seed of the 
faithful. Her reverend and renowned father is as the 
Phoenix of the ministry, an angel of God for gravity, 
humility, w^isdom, holiness, zeal, and all ministerial 
abilities ; yea, he is a Jacob, a prince with God ; a 
Moses, a man of God ; an Aaron, a saint of the Lord. 
I prize the stock and treasure of the prayers and tears 
of a conscientious minister and Christian above the 
richest dowry, rarest beauty, costliest robes, noblest 
friends, largest revenues, and most exquisite accommo- 
dations in the world. I value the office of a good minis- 
ter more than the magnificence of an emperor, and 
the counsel of my father more than the prince's favour. 
But many a corrupt branch hath come from a holy 
root : yet, 5. God hath given me a gracious com- 
panion, a daughter of Abraham, one that is a fellow- 
citizen with the saints, and of the household of faith. 


whose name is written in the book of life ; one that is 
accounted worthy of the kingdom of God, faithful and 
beloved, and a partaker of the benefits of the gospel. 
This is worth a world ! to have a wife full of the fruits 
of righteousness, to go along with me heavenwards, 
to lead on others by a good example, to advise, instruct, 
and pray for others, to mourn over abominations, and 
to seek after reformation ; O who am I, that I should 
be trusted with one of God's jewels? Every good wo- 
man is not indeed a suitable wife, but blessed be God, 
6. I have a true help-meet. God hath given me an 
humble, prudent, frugal, ingenuous companion, of a 
mild, flexible disposition, with whom I may take sweet 
counsel, who is of my own sentiments, and with whom 
I can walk to the house of God. What an affliction 
hath many a man had in a wife that was religious, 
but whose principles or natural disposition were dis- 
cordant. But God hath so framed our natures as if 
they had been cast in the same mould, •whereby abun- 
dant peace and tranquillity are in the family, a good 
example is set to others, and much comfort to our own 
spirits ; these are not our own deserts, but the gracious 
work of God for us. Blessed be the Lord for my wife ! 
And I desire to bless her in the name of the Lord." 

Great as Mr. Hey wood's joy was in his union to 
Miss Angier, like all other earthly comforts, it was not 
free from alloy. Mrs. H. was of a weak habit of body 
and frequently indisposed ; so that even on the morn- 
ing of her marriage, it was at first supposed she would 
be unable to leave her room on account of indisposition. 
Mr. H. was thus early taught to " rejoice as though 
he rejoiced not." About a year after marriage their 
eldest son was born, whom they called John, from the 
respect they entertained for his grandfather Mr. John 
Angier. Some circumstances connected with the birth 


of this child are thus gratefully noticed by Mr, H. 
*' Recount, O my soul, what God hath done for thee ! 
Though a wife, and such a wife, be a rich mercy, yet 
thou wouldst not have been well satisfied if he had not 
given thee issue ; and herein God hath condescended 
to favour thee. I now see the desire of my heart, for 
this was a return of prayer. God also stood by the 
mother in the time of trouble. He heard before we 
had called ; for when we had designed a day for seek- 
ing his face, he sent the mercy we intended to suppli- 
cate. I desire to dedicate the child all his days to the 
service of the church, as the best and highest office to 
which he can be advanced. Who am I, that God should 
set me over a family, make me a master, a husband, 
and a father, as if he purposed to heap on me all the 
mercies of which a creature is capable ! Surely these 
are the Lord's doings and marvellous in mine eyes ! 
Why did I not lose my dear wife as Jacob lost Rachel? 
Why gave she not up the ghost as the wife of Phinehas? 
Why had I no occasion to call my son Ichabod, in sor- 
rowful lamentation ? The free grace of God is the 
fountain of all this ! Who would not be the servant of 
such a God, who keepeth covenant and reserveth mercy 
to thousands ? He is the same yesterday, and to-day, 
and for ever, to them that fear him and keep his com- 

This new relationship of a father brought with it its 
cares as well as its comforts. Mr. H. well knew the 
worth of the soul and the necessity of regenerating 
grace for all the sons of Adam. God having given 
him a son, he felt and thus expressed himself as a chris- 
tian parent in what he calls, " Parents' groans," and 
'* Affections compared :" " Whilst we are in this world 
Xve are always wanting something. The body and 
soul have their constant necessities, and we are never 


SO full as not to desire more either for ourselves or 
ours. When I was single I was desirous of a wife, and 
when I had a wife I was desirous of having a family. 
Now I have a son, and I beg his life and health as 
well as his mother's. Since he is born in my own 
image, in the likeness of sinful Adam, I now want for 
his soul the grace of regeneration, adoption, and justi- 
fication. I desire not great things for him in the 
world, but good things for his soul to prepare him for 
another and a better world. () that his soul may live 
in God's sight, and find grace in his eyes ! O that, as 
Christ, he may grow in favour with God and man ! 
If I should have no worldly wealth to leave him, yet 
if God give him an interest in Christ and the promises, 
I shall say it is enough, for he will not want any good 
thing. This is what I long for, wait for, and pray for; 
if my child have this, he will be fit for life or death. 
May God fully answer the signification of his name, 
and make him another John ! May he be not only the 
" gift of God" in general, but have grace from God for 
all christian and ministerial employments, and go in 
the spirit and power of Elias, as the forerunner of 
Ciirist did. May he have the qualifications of the be- 
loved disciple and affectionate apostle, and the spiri- 
tual revelations of John the divine. This is my com- 
fort, that though I can do but little for God, yet I 
may have a seed that may serve him when I am laid 
in the grave, and gone to my long home." 

"I now see and feel more experimentally, God's in- 
finite love and my parents' warm affection for me than 
ever before. My passionate love to my child speaks 
my parents' pathetic love to me. Was it not love that 
])ut them to all those pains and offices for my good, 
when I could not help myself? What condescension 
to my childish desire, what prudent indulging of my 


htimoursome and troublesome inclinations, what pity- 
ing of my infirmities, and in all things what consulting 
of my advantage ! Was it not from love ? Did this 
love grow weary? No, no, difficulties increased it, 
and many waters could not quench it. Hindering of 
business in the day, breaking of sleep in the night, 
providing things convenient, and a thousand cares be- 
long to these living possessions ; yet all these were 
borne with delight, and so far from grudging they took 
pleasure in attending me : all this proceeded from love. 
As face answers to face in the water, so I can read my 
parent's love to me in the beatings of my pulse towards 
my child. Though I am almost a stranger to parental 
affections, and expect their growing with the thriving 
object, yet I can partly guess how dear my parents' 
thoughts were, and continue to be. O what prayers, 
fears, and tears did they pour out on my behalf ! Little 
do children think, ah ! little did I think, what yearn- 
ings of bowels, what meltings of heart, what impetuous 
actings of mixed affections, parents have towards chil- 
dren in their infancy, youth, and riper years, whether 
present or absent, in health or sickness. Their love 
to me was mingled with hatred to my faults, or what 
would hurt me ; their joy was united with grief for 
my painful distempers or corrupt nature ; their hopes 
of me were mingled with fears and jealousies relative 
to future misconduct ; their anger was tempered with 
meekness ; thus and abundantly more were my parents' 
breasts perturbed for me, and now I begin to know 
something of it. Yet all these are as nothing in com- 
parison of the displays of God's love to poor rebellious 
creatures. Here stand admiring, O my soul, and fol- 
low that feeling resemblance, so often repeated in God's 
word, of his fatherly affection towards his adopted 
children, which however is as dissimilar as the shadow 


to the substance, as a drop to the ocean, as a spark to 
the sun. He loves after a different manner from that 
of the dearest father or tenderest mother. Theirs is 
natural, his is spiritual affection ; theirs is temporary, 
his from eternity and to eternity ; theirs by instinct or 
impulse of nature, his is free ; theirs is because of some 
excellency, his is to those that have no beauty, nothing 
but deformity and when lying in their blood. Parents 
would very rarely die for their children ; yet his love 
brought him to the grave. Parents may possibly for- 
get their children ; but God's eye is upon those that 
are his, and his heart towards them. Though parents 
love their children they cannot always accomplish 
what their love designs ; but God doth. What father's 
love can equal liis ? Avhat mother's affection will run 
parallel with his ? Let God's love be the nonsuch, 
and let man write after this copy. Let me love God 
with all my might and soul ; yea, let me love God for 
himself and all other things in and for him, and put all 
things in a due subordination to him. Beware, my 
soul, of splitting on the rock of inordinate affection. 
Thou canst not overlove thy God ; but thou mayest 
easily transgress in overloving dear relations. Get na- 
tural affections spiritualized and so love as a Christian, 
lest strong affection exceed moderation. To overlove 
is the very way to lose the mercy ; for when God sees 
the object is more prized than himself, if he love that 
soul, he will remove the interposing object, that the 
torrent of affection may be turned into the right chan- 
nel. Learn to love as if thou lovedst not, and to be 
weaned from the dearest outward enjoyments. The 
affections are the most deceitful part of thy deceitful 
heart. Learn to look upon thy child as a dying crea- 
ture, and to bury it whilst it lives, that thy comforts 
may survive its death. It is but lent thee for a sea- 


son, be willing therefore to return it to the owner at 
his call." 

April 18, 1657, Eliezer, the second son of Mr. Hey- 
wood, was born ; this was exactly a year after the 
birth of the first-born. Thus far, the days Mr. H. 
had spent at Coley, were peculiarly happy ; he seemed 
to enjoy all that heart could wish. As a minister, he 
was beloved by the people of his charge, and made the 
instrument of good to many souls ; as a Christian, he 
had been growing in knowledge and grace, and enjoyed 
much of the presence of his God ; and as a man, he 
was blessed with an amiable consort, the object of his 
choice, and a fellow-heir of future glory, and was now 
honoured with an increasing family to perpetuate his 
name in the world. But a constant succession, or 
even the long continuance pf enjoyments does not fall 
to the lot of sinful man: it is the privilege of the inha- 
bitants of heaven only, to have all tears wiped away 
from their eyes, and to dwell where " there shall be no 
more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, nor any more 
pain." The birth of Eliezer was attended with a va- 
riety of afflictive dispensations. About the time of 
Mrs. Heywood's expected confinement, her husband 
was taken ill. Mr. Heywood's affectionate mother, 
hearing of the situation of her son's family, came from 
Lancashire to render all the assistance in her power, 
though at the same time, she also was labouring under 
severe bodily infirmities. Mr. H. recovered from his 
indisposition, his wife was graciously supported in her 
trying situation, and his son was born : but four days 
after the birth of his son, his mother died under his 

These circumstances gave rise to the following re- 
flections : " Take a view, my soul, of the late occur- 
rences in thy family, and make a holy use of them. 


Such losses and gains, mercies and afflictions in this 
month, yea, in a single week, never happened before 
in all thy life. The God of heaven first struck thee 
with sickness, which occasioned thy dear mother to 
come and visit thee, who fell sick, languished a while, 
and died, while thy dear, dear wife was safely delivered 
of another son. These are remarkable events of Provi- 
dence. O my soul, dwell a little on them. See if 
thou canst not read God's meaning in these lines, and 
make some use of the variety of letters, which this 
leaf in thy history contains. It was not for nothing 
that God did threaten thee once again with a fatal 
disease. At first, there were similar symptoms of ap- 
proaching sickness, as in thy former fever ; but God 
only threatened, the shower came not, only a few drops 
fell, and so it passed away. Blessed be God, that 
kept thee only one sabbath away from the public 
ordinances ; the third day he did revive thee, and now 
thou livest in his sight. O my soul, let this mercy be 
like Aaron's rod to blossom, and let suitable fruit ap- 
pear in thy life and conversation. But because thou hast 
a deceitful, careless heart, and canst not bear nor use 
such comforts, God put a grain of bitterness into this 
cup of mercy. It was not for nothing that thy God 
did thus dispose matters, that thy mother, such a mo- 
ther as is very rare, a daughter of Abraham, one of a 
thousand, an eminent member of Israel's family, a 
wrestler and prevailer with the Lord, should come and 
take her last farewell of the world in this thy family, 
at such a time, and that she should be the first fruit of 
death in thy house. It was no mean honour that God 
vouchsafed to thee, that she who was the means of thy 
life, who loved thee so dearly, who breathed out her 
soul in fervent prayers for thee, should breathe her 
last under thy roof, and that thou shouldst be the 


Joseph to dose her eyes. O the breach that is made ! 
How shall it be filled up ? Such a gracious saint is 
not easily found ; and shall it be altogether lost ? 
I know it is her infinite gain. Shall not we have 
gain also that survive? May those for whom she 
poured out her cries and tears get gain ! O that her 
dear husband, our honoured father, may acquire more 
spiritual supplies from above, and her whole family be 
gainers ! O that we may have an increase of all those 
divine graces, that did so illustriously shine in her 
soul ! May we, whom God hath put into public 
places, have such warmth of religion in our hearts, 
such public spirit, well-meaning simplicity, gravity 
and sincerity, as she had, be as free from sinister ends, 
as active in doing good, and as willing to spend and 
be spent in God's service as she was ! Possibly, the 
benefit of her prayers may be extended to us in our 
holy office. How often have I found God's quickening 
and supporting presence in public, at the very time 
she was devoutly engaged in private. When God 
helped her heart to pray, he enabled me to speak : and 
shall I altogether lose the benefit thereof? Are not 
many prayers yet on the file ? This is my comfort, 
my friend may die, but God doth live, and prayers may 
live ; therefore the fountain of my comforts doth con- 
tinue. Though my loss be great, God can make it 
fully up another way, and give me cause to say, O 
gainful loss ! O comfortable trial ! O heart-melting 
providence ! We had a more cheering and direct 
mercy about that time in the deliverance of my dear 
and tender wife, the sweetness of which did somewhat 
moderate the bitterness of the other afflictive cup : as 
one was made ripe for heaven and went from this 
world ; so another came into it. May he also be 
trained up to be an heir of glory ! O that he may 


grow up to fill the gap that has been made ! Already 
there hath been much of God's power and faithfulness 
experienced, according to the signification of his name, 
Eliezer, the God of my help. God helped the mother 
when she was brought low, yea, he was remarkably 
seen, a present help in time of trouble. O that he 
would help the lad also, and be with him as he hath 
been with her ! O that he would help us all our 
days, that we may set up our Samuel's stone, saying, 
"Hitherto the Lord hath helped us!' May he help 
us by one mercy after another in our pilgrimage, by 
providences and ordinances, from step to step, from 
strength to strength, that we and ours may be so 
helped on by grace, as that we may arrive at glory to 
joy in the God of all our mercies through all eternity." 
The death of his mother was only the beginning of 
sorrows. Mr. H. had hitherto enjoyed the sunshine 
of comfort with his people, but a severe storm was 
gathering, the effects of which were very distressing. 
*' My first apprenticeship," he observes, " of almost 
seven years passed on very quietly and comfortably, 
and with as much encouragement, in some respects, as 
my heart desired. While the blossom was budding, it 
was fair sunshine and calm weather ; but now, when I 
came to some maturity, (at least, when I could better 
bear it,) I experienced many a bitter blast and nipping 
frost. The Lord warded off the malevolent tongue 
and hands of men, so that they did not assualt me, no, 
not a dog moved his tongue against me, that I knew 
of. Indeed, there was not that occasion, for while I 
only preached the word, the sharpest passages being 
only general, did not much exasperate : however, they 
did not show their teeth as they have done since. I 
do not judge myself better deserving respect than other 
pious ministers. O no ! I am the unworthiest of the 


tribe of Levi : yet few have had so large a share of 
comfort ; because, it may be, God saw I needed more 
encouragement, being weaker than others, and that a 
little opposition would discompose my spirit and 
hinder my progress; therefore he spared me, as a man 
doth a tender child. He gave me liberty to muster 
and prepare for further service, to rig my ship for 
storms, to fortify myself by degrees, to lay in ammu- 
nition and provision for a siege, that my forehead 
might become hard, and my brow brass, against the 
workers of iniquity." 

The occasion of this uneasiness to which he refers, 
was an attempt to restore the administration of the 
Lord's supper, which had not been celebrated at Coley 
for several years before Mr. H.'s settlement at the 
place, and also to establish church-discipline, which 
had been totally neglected. The want of the ordinance 
of the Lord's supper he thus deplores : " Whence 
comes it to pass, O my soul, that we have been so long 
deprived of that sealing ordinance, the Lord's supper? 
Was our dear Saviour so careful in his bitter agony to 
leave this friendly legacy, and are we so careless of his 
token of love, that we scarcely seek out for it? Surely 
this imports much ingratitude to him, and cruelty to 
ourselves. None of God's appointments are in vain, 
and they will prove a channel to convey divine influ- 
ences, if duly, regularly, and conscientiously improved. 
In this ordinance especially, a gracious soul may be 
satisfied with the breasts of consolation. Indeed, other 
ordinances, preaching, praying, reading, meditating, 
and baptism, have their several needful and useful 
purposes for regeneration and confirmation ; but of 
this holy supper, we may say, as of Goliah's sword, 
*' there is none like it." Here we see the soul's fat 
pasture and still waters, where it may feed on the 


bread of life, and drink those living waters which come 
from under the threshold of the sanctuary : this is 
Christ's flesh, that is meat indeed, and his blood, that 
is drink indeed. Here grows the tree of life, bearing 
all manner of fruit, the very leaves of which are for 
the healing of the nations. This is a part of the 
paradise of God, a resemblance of the large upper 
room in which Christ ate bread with his disciples ; 
yea, a presage of the everlasting feast in glory. This 
is as the gate of heaven, where God sends angels by 
Jacob's ladder to bring good news ; yea, he comes 
himself to sup with his people. Here we may see the 
ocean of Christ's blood that quenched the flame of di- 
vine wrath. The close hypocrite and profane Esau 
may possibly crowd in at this feast, as the man with- 
out a wedding garment requisite for gospel quali- 
fication, and so receive the outward elements without 
the spirit of the ordinance ; but the gracious soul ac- 
cepts it as a pledge of God's peculiar love and feeds on 
Christ by this medium. The lukewarm Laodicean 
and general professor may take it as a common meal, 
or as bread of deceit and water of strife ; but a worthy 
communicant considers it, like Benjamin's mess, five 
times larger, better, and sweeter than his daily food. 
Blessed are they who drink of these rivers of pleasure, 
and whose souls are nourished with the fatness of God's 
house. Others may and do enjoy these comforts ; but 
alas ! we want them. And wherefore do we want 
them ? Of this we cannot give a good account. We 
have waited for this ordinance many years, and still 
wait God's time to enjoy it in God's way ; but, as yet, 
' the harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are 
not saved.' We stand still and would see God's salva- 
tion without our own endeavours ; we say it is not time 
yet to build God's house. ^Ve look for miracles from hea- 


ven and engage not in the work ; we make obstructions, 
and say, ' there is a lion in the way.' Alas ! we may 
wait years and ages, and not be any nearer unless we 
buckle to. Who knows hov/ plain God may make our 
way when we begin to walk, and how he may assist us 
by his g-race when we are resolved to overcome all cp- 
position? He can make all mountains to become a 
plain before Zerubbabel. My soul, be not afraid but 
valiant ; let not false, perfidious friends, nor open pro- 
fessed foes put thee in fear. The cause is God's and 
he will bear thee out. One ordinance is worth a v/orld 
of pains; and one smile from God therein will counter- 
balance all our troubles. Satan will raise his legions of 
enemies, and invent his lies and slanders : the black 
regiment will soon be mustered to break in pieces the 
bonds of church-government, and cast away the cords 
of scripture doctrine, for the whole Vv'orid is mad upon 
liberty ; and canst thou expect to be at peace with 
Christ's enemies, and yet remain his friend ? God and 
mammon cannot be united, therefore have nothing to 
do with the unfruitful works of darkness, but reprove 
them. I confess, reforming is an ungrateful work ; but 
Christ declared, purifying the temple was his meat and 
drink. A distinguishing separation is harsh to carnal 
minds. Be serious and deliberate ; consult with God 
and take advice of his church ; do nothing rashly ; get 
a good wairant and a good conscience to bear thee out 
against all opposition. Be sure to walk uprightly, and 
then thou wilt walk surely ; seek to engage God on 
thy side by following his instructions, that thou mayest 
act under his protection. Who would live in the 
midst of broils and contentions when he might be out 
of them ? But remember Christ, ' who for the joy 
that was set before him endured the cross, despised the 
shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne 

VOL. I. E 


of God.' Serve God in tliy generation, and strive after 
the church's peace and comfort in thy station. Improve 
thy interest to recover a lost ordinance and build up 
the walls of Jerusalem. In the mean time make the 
best improvement of the loss." 

From the sentiments expressed in the above soli- 
loquy, it is evident he could not satisfy his mind, with- 
out making' some attempt to restore the long-neglected, 
but important ordinance of the Lord's supper at Coley. 
He was well aware, that many a good design has failed 
through want of prudence in the manner in which the 
affair was begun : he therefore consulted his judicious 
father, Angier, and adopted that plan which was 
likely to give least offence, and yet effect his purpose. 
Fully persuaded he was walking in the path of duty, 
and aiming at the glory of God in the good of his 
church, he was regardless of consequences. He pre- 
pared the way by some sermons on the subject,- and 
then appointed a day for those persons to meet him at 
the chapel who were favourable to the object. Many 
came, and it was proposed that a few individuals, of 
acknowledged piety and wisdom, should be appointed 
by that meeting to assist him in the examination of 
those who expressed a desire of becoming commu- 
nicants : but this measure was not adopted, and the 
whole of the work devolved on himself. Above one 
hundred and twenty persons applied, from many of 
whom he received abundant and unexpected satisfac- 
tion. Several, labouring under trouble of mind, and 
prevented by timidity from making their situation 
known to him, were glad of this opportunity ; and 
he rejoiced greatly to find his labours were far 
more blessed than he had supposed. The names of 
those approved were publicly announced to the whole, 
and if objections were entertained against any, they 


were to be made known to him before the day appoint- 
ed for the administration of the ordinance.* Some 
persons of improper character were offended at his 
mode of proceeding, and threatened to make a distur- 
bance by applying at the time the ordinance was to be 
observed ; but they were so impressed by the morning 
sermon that their courage failed. 

Having so far succeeded, his heart was filled with 
joy, and he thus describes the state of his mind on the 
occasion : " Record, O my soul, the memorable acts of 
God's distinguishing providence, relative to distin- 
guishing ordinances, and relinquish not the privilege 
of the supper so lately enjoyed. Time was, when thou 
longedst with David for the water of the well of Beth- 
lehem, and thy soul fainted with hunger and thirst. 
Now, through some peril and hazardous attempts, thou 
hast obtained thy object, and the supply proves not 
water but wine — not wine, but blood — not the blood 
of David's worthies, but the blood of the Son of God ; 
the bread is not ordinary bread, but manna ; yea, 
above the bread that came down from heaven : the 
blood of Christ is drink indeed, and his flesh, meat 
indeed. How often hath the Lord's day been the 
delight of my soul, holy and honourable ; but the last 
was the best, my soul was almost overjoyed : it was 
the first time this invaluable ordinance had been cele- 

* In a private record of church-transactions among his MSS. 
he has the following entry : " I made an attempt to set up disci- 
pline ; and by the good hand of my God did attain it, so far as to 
restore the sealing ordinance, while I was public preacher at Coley 
chapel ; and we enjoyed that sweet ordinance from 1G55 to 1660, 
and some time after the king was restored. The names of such 
as sat down with us are these, many of whom are now dead, and 
some join not with us." Then follows a list of seventy-three names. 
In a note, he says : " Almost forty of the old communicants have 
gone to their long home. July 12, 1676." 

E 2 


brated in this place for the last sixteen years. How 
did my heart leap at the restitution of it ! With what 
joy did I read and repeat the institution ! O whence 
is this to me, that I should be instrumental in restoring 
this solemn ordinance ! It is true, indeed, all things 
are not as could be desired ; there are many things 
amiss, too many inconsistent members, and too few 
assistant officers. Yet, O my soul, do not obscure the 
glory of the mercy thou enjoyest. The Lord hath 
helped thee beyond expectation ; for though our be- 
ginnings are small, he doth not despise the day of 
small things. The adversaries mocked at our solemn 
assemblies, and derided our consultations ; but ' where- 
in they dealt proudly, he was above them ;' their 
words were but v/ind, and their threats of little force; 
God was on our side, and took our part, the enemies 
themselves being judges. Who would have thought 
so great a work could have been carried on so far, 
managed by so weak an instrument, with so little as- 
sistance, and in the midst of so much discouraging 
opposition ! Surely the hand of the Lord was in all 
this ! Though we were a poor, despised company of 
weak individuals, deserted, if not opposed, by the rich 
of the congregation, who v/ould not put their necks 
under the yoke of Christ, yet hath the Lord helped us 
in the discharge of our duty. When some threatened 
they would offer themselves at the ordinance, to see 
if I would pass them by, the power of God's word did 
so prevail, that they withdrew from their intended 
design. With respect to some, who had been examined 
by me, and concerning whom I had no particular 
ground of objection, it pleased the Lord so to deal 
with them under the forenoon's discourse, that the 
most, with whom several of undoubted piety were dis- 
satisfied, being conscious of their own unworthiness. 


went away; so that the greater part of those that 
staid were, I hope, truly gracious : this, O this was 
the Lord's doing ! Alas, the state of things is such, 
that we have not authority to suspend or banish per- 
sons visibly unworthy ; but God himself hath under- 
taken the v/ork. He it was that gave us a comfort- 
able enjoyment of this ordinance, afforded his gracious 
presence, and conveyed to us divine influences on the 
occasion. ' This is our God ; we have waited for him, 
and he will save us : this is the Lord ; we have waited 
for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.' 
We may say, with Abraham : ' In the mount of the 
Lord it shall be seen.' He loves to own despised 
worms, and to help where none else will or can. 'We 
are like them that dream. The Lord hath done great 
things for us, whereof we are glad.'" 

The joy and ])eace that attended the first celebration 
of the death of Christ at Coley, after so many years of 
neglect, were of short duration. When a good work 
is begun, Satan is sure to provoke opposition either by 
pretended friends or avowed enemies ; if the ruins of 
Jerusalem are to be repaired, Sanballats and Tobiahs 
will make their aj)pearance or exert their secret influ- 
ence. Some persons were highly offended because the 
door of admission to church-fellowship was not thrown 
open so widely as to admit persons indiscriminately, 
while some, on the other hand, were dissatisfied think- 
ing the terms of communion were not sufficiently strict: 
from those who embraced these opposite sentiments 
Mr. Heywood experienced much opposition ; and from 
this period we may date the commencement of his severe 
trials. It was a great trouble to him that some who 
were most violent in their opposition, were those to 
whom he had hoped his ministry had been useful. It 
is lamentable to find how far this opposition was carried, 


particularly by those who were anxious that the rules 
of church-discipline should b-j of the strictest kind. 
*' Such was their behaviour towards me," he says, 
" that their own party elsewhere disclaimed them. I 
voted some of them })lameworthy at a church meeting", 
and the country did so ring* with it, that the reproach 
will never be wiped ofi'. True it is, there was such 
provoking occasion, all circumstances considered, that I 
could very ill brook or bear it, and I found great need 
of special grace, and had an opportunity to practise 
some of the hardest lessons in Christianity ; to bear in- 
juries without desire of revenge, to suffer grievous in- 
ilignities without animosity, to pray for such as de- 
spitefully used me, to love my enemies, and to overcome 
evil with good. I never knew what these lessons 
meant till now." At this time he experienced what 
he justly denominates, " direct oj)position," in which 
he says, " If God be with me, why doth all this evil 
come upon me ? If God be for me, why are men against 
me ? Hath not God said, that if a man's ways please 
the Lord, he maketli even his enemies to be at peace 
with him ? Surely something must be amiss, else God 
would not thus have permitted the devil and his agents 
to come in upon us. Have we not miscarried in the 
business ; in matter, manner, or end ? Is not this a 
punishment ? Certainly there is cause for deep humili- 
ation on our part ; though the work was God's, the 
defects were ours ; what is good was from heaven, anc' 
what was evil from ourselves. O my soul, never tih 
now didst thou feel the vigorous opposition of the 
prince of darkness, especially in such open hostility 
opposing the power of godliness. He has been ac- 
customed to come under a visor, but now he comes in 
his own colours, and with mighty force strikes at the 
heart of religion. With what rage do men cast 


nuisance on the ways of God and nickname the pro- 
fessors of holiness? What plottings are there to thrust 
me from this place ? what withdrawings of mainte- 
nance ? what heart-burnings, surmises, and divisions 
among the people of God? what bitter and biting words, 
neglect of duty, and improper conduct among the strict- 
est professors ? whither will all this lead ? will God 
take away the candlestick, and give men, in judgment, 
what they desire ? I do not know what he will do 
with the congregation, but I fear he hath a bitter 
scourge for it. A desire and endeavour to set up the 
discipline of Christ hath exasperated many ; they hate 
to be reformed. Now my troubles are coming thick 
upon me. God hath long spared me that I might be- 
come furnished for assaults and fiery trials. He hath 
indulged me for seven years together with the love 
and favour of the people, and encouragement on all 
hands ; but summer will not always last, and now 
wintry storms and blasts are come. O why should the 
hopeful blossoms be nipped, and never come to per- 
fection? Some persons pretending to be builders 
weaken our hands, and others openly deride. Think 
upon them, O my God, and turn their hearts unto thee, 
or restrain their malice. How are we the reproach of 
all, and the drunkard's song ! Remember me in all 
my personal afflictions, and think of thy people, who 
enlist themselves under thy banner : for thy sake we 
have borne reproach. It is a great mercy that men 
have not power to put us to death, for God is above 
them, and will make them and their actions as his 
footstool to advance his glory. In the meantime, O 
my soul, wait thou on God and keep his ways. Be 
engaged in thy work, and commit the issue of all to 
him in prayer, who will keep thee in all thy ways ; 
there are more with us than with those that are 
against us." 


Mr. Heywood's troubles became complicated in their 
nature, and increased by a variety of circumstances. 
The nation had long been in an unsettled state, and 
though he was too prudent, as a minister of the gos- 
pel, to distinguish himself by political zeal, he could 
not but have his sentiments and wishes as a member of 
the commonwealth. As a Christian and friend to his 
country, he was attached to that form of government, 
which in his opinion appeared most adapted to pro- 
mote the real welfare of the nation. He was no friend 
to the arbitrary measures of Cromwell, and the anarchy 
that was too prevalent during the interregnum. AVhen 
taking a view of what he considered, " Public Woes," 
lie thus expresses himself, particularly in reference to 
the state of religion, and the horrors of internal con- 
tests. " Shouldst thou, O my soul, contain thyself 
within the bounds of thine own heart, and not inter- 
meddle vv^ith more public affairs that concern the church 
and state ? The sudden rumour of some strange cir- 
cumstances, which respect the church's decay, hath 
much affected the hearts of many precious saints. 
When Eli heard the doleful tidings of the ark of God, 
he fell backwards and died. No wonder that sympa- 
thizing saints should be afilicted on account of the sins 
and sorrows of the church, seeing we have peace, li- 
berty, and sweet enjoyiiients under her maternal v.-ings. 
When she hath trouble, why should not we lament over 
Jerusalem's ruins, and have compassion on the scattered 
stones of this city of our God ? How can we expect to 
have a share in the church's enlargements v.'ho par- 
take not of her sorrows ? Come then, my soul, and 
view this guilty nation. Thou needest not make long 
journeys to behold our njiseries, thine eyes will soon 
affect thy heart, and objects sad enough will be pre- 
sented to thee. When thou attentively surveyest 
England, doth not a Golgotha appear ? We were not 


long ago a Canaan, a land flowing with milk and iioney, 
but our scarlet sins have changed the prospect, for it 
floweth with blood, and swelleth with cruelty, and is 
turned into an Aceldama. The blood of many a war- 
like hero, and worthy saint has flowed in abundant 
streams on the earth, and stained our country. Alas, 
we have become a mere skeleton, and do daily walk 
among tombs and monuments. Our faces are pale, 
and our hearts tremble also for the ark of God. But 
is not the Lord still the God of the nation ? And if he 
be with us and for us, who can be against us ? What 
need have we to complain ? Alas, this is the greatest 
grief of all, that God is leaving England ! this, this is 
the quintessence of our calamity. Alas, how can our 
land fare well when God has departed ? Well, and if 
poor England's best days be past, we alone may thank 
ourselves : we must condemn ourselves, and justify 
God. Our people have been surfeited with the gcsf>el. 
They cry out, away with formalities ; the manna is 
light food, it creates loathing. We need not wonder 
then, if God should take av/ay what has become offen- 
sive to the nation. Will his Spirit always strive ? It 
is true, indeed, many hopeful Timothys have lately 
been sent to work in the Lord's vineyard ; but are they 
therefore obliged to remain in England ? Perhaps it 
is God's design to make an engaging, attractive appear- 
ance at parting, to let us see what he can and would 
do if we would obey. God knows I do not desire these 
things to come to pass ; I love my dear mother, the 
church of England, would hope the best, and pray for 
better things than I can well hope. I shall not be 
sorry if my fears are groundless, but shall much re- 
joice in God's free mercy and undeserved love ; I shall 
then cry out with admiration, that God's mercy is above 
all his works. O that he would display the riches of 


his grace, and not destroy this sinful nation ! Should 
not the sins of this poor island, (the cause of all its 
miseries) much affect thee, my soul ? Wilt thou not 
imitate the pious practice of renowned patriots of 
former days, M^ho lamented for those that did not la- 
ment for themselves ? Canst thou look abroad and 
not behold iniquity ? canst thou see it and not lament 
it ? The whole head of authority is sick, and the 
v/hole heart of the nation is faint. The Lord has been 
pleased to lay aside some excellent spirits as useless for 
a season, and, because of our provoking sins, hath put 
into their place sensual, self-seeking, and intruding 
persons, who like drones, eat up the best of the land. 
These are opposers of reformation, and contrivers of 
ruin, by means of oppressions, taxes, and vexatious 
proceedings, together with a shocking toleration of 
blasphemies, and abused religion, under the harmless 
pretext of liberty for tender consciences, the conse- 
quences of which we have already experienced, and 
shall continue to feel. O what a blow hath true re- 
ligion sustained, under pretence of harmless opinions 
about mere circumstantial points, whereas they raze 
the foundation. We were weary of monarchy, but 
shall be more weary of anarchy. Is there no one to 
sit at the helm of the ship of our poor commonwealth, 
but an army of rude, unruly, and contentious soldiers? 
Alas, this is a sad case ! Yet it is so, or worse; for men 
overawed by them, must rule and govern us. The 
sword alone must now dispose of all moral, civil, and 
ecclesiastical affairs. Ah poor ship, must thou be 
driven away without a pilot ? Then farewell safety. 
Whither will not the furious blasts of men's interests 
transport thee ? On what rocks of infamy and misery 
will they not dash thee? Alas, poor ship, whither 
thou must go God only knows ! The sword of the 


Civil magistrate is sheathed, and the word of the spiri- 
tual minister is slighted. The sword of justice is 
drawn to support injustice, and the power of authority 
encourages such as do evil, and discourages those that 
do well. Were not ministers once the chariots and 
horsemen, the strength and beauty of our English 
Israel ? but are they not now the scorn, and ofFscour- 
ing of the world ? The clergy of England a few years 
ago were the glory of the earth ; but now such as can 
speak have a bolt to throw at them ! Stand and won- 
der, O my soul, at this woful, frightful, and prodigious 
change from one extreme to another. They that lately 
were slavish in their fear and obedience, so that they 
scarcely durst speak or act without their priest's di- 
rections, now contemn the Lord's directions and his 
ministers ! Those silly ignorant persons, that admired 
learning, and almost worshipped scholars, now trample 
all under their feet, and would have universities de- 
melished, literature banished, and darkness introduced ! 
Do we not see illiterate, havighty, and presumptuous 
soldiers and artificers perched up in congregations, 
and without controul oppose sound doctrine, sow tares, 
and teach the people to despise and malign their pious, 
prudent, faithful, peaceable, and learnedly religious 
pastors ? All this they do with such scurrilous lan- 
guage, as if the devil were at their tongue's end, doing 
his best to speak the worst of those he cannot destroy. 
Are not the people apt enough to hate their ministers, 
but they must be taught to cast reproach upon them ? 
Is this the reward the ungrateful world affords us ? It 
is our happiness then, that God is the portion of the 
tribe of Levi. We are not men's servants, and they 
are not to give us our reward, this is our comfort, and 
blessed be God for this hope ; his providences, promises, 
interest in him, and communion with him, are what 


we cannot be deprived of by men. We deserve, it is 
true, more than we yet have suffered on account of 
pride, negligence, and covetousness ; and it is a mercy 
God hath not cast us out as salt which has lost its sa- 
vour. Let us then bless the Lord that things are not 
much worse, even as our sins have justly deserved." 

In August, I659j Sir George Booth, afterwards 
Lord Delamere, attempted to excite a disposition in 
the country in opposition to the powers then in autho- 
rity, and in favour of Charles IL This was called the 
Cheshire rising, because most of the gentry in that 
county were engaged in the plot. Many were weary 
of the confusion into which the nation had been 
thrown, and secretly wished for the restoration of 
monarchy, and the ancient family. The flame that 
was kindled in Cheshire soon spread into the neigh- 
boviring county of Lancashire, and the adjacent parts 
of Yorkshire ; and, for a short time, threatened to em- 
broil the country in another civil war ; but this little 
army was met by Lambert's forces near Northwich, 
and dispersed. Several of Mr. Heywood's relations in 
Lancashire approved of the design, and his sentiments 
in favour of the restoration being known, he was ac- 
cused by some, who were offended at his conduct res- 
pecting the establishment of discipline at Coley, as 
being concerned in this rising. Whatever were his 
private wishes, he by no means expressed his appro- 
bation of the attempt, though some of the most scanda- 
lous measures were adopted, to induce him to declare 
his opinion, and thus involve him in civil troubles. 
The shameful manner in which some of his people acted 
in this affair, he thus describes : " They came to dis- 
course with me, pretendedly in love and friendship, got 
what they could from me on state affairs, and then, 
when they saw their opportunity, threatened they had. 


in writing, a charge against me uttered unav/afes by 
my own lips ; and their own jealousy helped them to 
invent other things, wherein they imagined I was 
guilty, though far otherwise. I may truly say, as in 
the presence of God, ' they laid to my charge, things 
which I knew not,' and which had not entered into my 
thoughts. They wrested my words, and when I de- 
sired liberty to be my own interpreter, if it were con- 
trary to their groundless surmisings, they charged me 
with falsehood, and condemned me without trial. 
When a considerable number of my friends came to 
support me at a meeting, they would scarcely give 
them leave to speak on my behalf. Some openly con- 
tradicted me, by sending a note to me in the middle of 
my sermon to distract me, though, blessed be God, it 
prevailed not to do me much harm. They trampled 
on me scornfully, as scarcely worthy to live, some of 
them saying, ' they could not tell how to trust me with 
their bodies, much less with their souls ; they would 
not sit down under any man's ministry that would not 
obey authority ;' though they themselves were the 
most disobedient, changing the magistracy at their 
pleasure many times in a year, if they did not suit 
their ambitious and covetous humours ; yet they could 
never charge me with disturbing the peace in word or 
action. This I must confess, that I could not say, 
amen, to their very irregular actions, nor act against 
my conscience; for I m.ust obey God rather than men: 
I durst not dissemble with God, I mean, in giving 
him thanks for what I was convinced was real matter 
of humiliation."* 

* When Lambert's forces had dispersed the Cheshire army, the 
Parliament ordered public thanks to be offered in places of wor- 
ship for the success of their troops ; this was the circumstance to 
which Mr. H. refers^ 


In the midst of these outward difficulties, his third 
son, Nathaniel Heywood, was born, and by an inter- 
cepted letter directed to some of his friends in Lanca- 
shire, to inform them of this domestic occurrence, he 
became involved in further troubles. These mixed 
providences he thus records : " Review, O my soul, 
a strange medley of multifarious providences about 
thee and thine. My dear friends and others, in my 
native county, upon serious thoughts and weighty 
grounds, did take up arms against the present powers, 
about August 1, 1659, among whom myself was ge- 
nerally included, though falsely. My dear wife, after 
a difficult time, was delivered of another son, Aug. 7. 
I desired to give an account of this to my friends in 
Lancashire, and sent to them the day after. The 
scouting soldiers intercepted the message, sent back 
the messenger, and took the letter. August 9, a band 
of soldiers came and took me prisoner, and led me 
away from my afflicted wife and troubled family. 
They kept me one night with the resolution of send- 
ing me to York, but God prevented, and raised up 
some to be my friends, from whom little could be ex- 
pected, who obtained my release. I was sent home 
without any perplexing engagements being laid upon 
me, so that I observed the fast on the Friday, and ce- 
lebrated the Lord's supper yesterday. O that I could 
learn the mind of God in all these dispensations ! 
Surely I may sing of mercy and judgment ; floods of 
love, and only drops of displeasure. How mysterious 
is God in his proceedings ! O that I had wisdom 
iTom above to spell out his meaning ! He hath a spe- 
cial design in all these national commotions : he only 
knows what party will prevail ; yet a new war would 
prove fatal in its progress and end. Things have been 
carried on strangely in the nation, and woe be unto us 


if God enter into judgment with us ! The saddest 
thing is, that professing people are engaged on both 
sides, yea, many precious saints seem about to draw 
their swords against one another, while wicked men 
stand by and say, ' so would we have it.' O that God 
would make this turn off to his glory and his people's 
satisfaction ! The failure of the message to give notice 
of my wife's deliverance, and to desire my dear father 
Angler's coming over to baptize the child, was a pain- 
ful thing : but God had a special hand therein, and 
showed me much mercy. My friends and foes sym- 
pathized with me, and contributed their best assistance 
for my help. The chief trouble w^as the state of my 
dear, afflicted, and discouraged wife ; but when her 
flesh and heart began to fail, God was the strength of 
her heart, and satisfying portion. The soldiers led me 
some miles backward and forward in the dark of the 
night, and endeavoured to frighten me with threaten- 
ing words ; but God stood by me, and gave me cou- 
rage under unexpected trials, and sent me home the 
morning after : this was the Lord's doing ! No man 
knows what a day may bring forth : what fears and 
hopes, what crosses and comforts, what dangers and 
deliverances he may quickly experience. God no 
where promiseth to keep his people out of all trouble, 
but to keep them from any deadly harm thereby ; they 
may pass through the waters, but they shall not over- 
flow them ; they may walk through the fire, but they 
shall not be burned : God hath engaged to be with 
them in both. O my soul, let not these things slip 
out of thy mind ; but whilst thou hast a day to live> 
continue praising God for this deliverance." 

God, who had hithertho been enlarging Mr. Hey- 
wood's family, now saw it good to visit him with a new 
dispensation. He had begun to feel some of the plea^ 


sures, cares, and anxieties of a tender father, when 
beholding his children around him enjoying life ; but 
now he was made acquainted with the feelings of a 
pious parent, when witnessing the corpse of his child. 
His youngest son did not live quite three weeks. This 
event beinc: almost simultaneous Vv^th the Cheshire 
rising, he thus takes notice of them : " August 20, 
tidings came that the Lancashire army was utterly 
routed, 3000 slain, many hundreds taken prisoners, 
and the design entirely frustrated : though afterwards 
we found it was not so desperate as was at first repre- 
sented. My little infant was taken very ill on Monday 
night, and groaned out its distress till Wednesday^ 
August 24, when it pleased God to take it. In all 
these things God shows himself a sovereign. O what 
a heart-affecting thing was the late national confusion ! 
It was a sudden, and perhaps an unadvised under- 
taking. True it is, we had sore and heavy grievances, 
and the land hath long groaned under a woful oppres- 
sion and strange disappointments in church and state. 
But would it not have been better to try some other 
way than involve the nation in a new war? Doth 
not God rather call us to suffer persecution, than rise 
up against those persons that have plenary posses- 
sion ? May not God have wise ends in setting over 
us powers of usurpation ? When his time is coine, 
cannot he easily open a way for the accomplishment 
of his own purposes, without our using irregular 
means? It is a serious thing to involve a whole 
nation in broils and bloodshed ; and a sad thing in- 
deed for any of God's people to engage in such a con- 
tention ! It made my very soul bleed, to think of 
pious men meeting each other in a hostile manner. 
Woe is me ! that I have lived to see this day, when 
ecclesiastical divisions have produced civil opposition. 


when Ephraim envies Judah, and Judah vexes Eph- 
raim. How sad is it that those who are reconciled by 
the blood of Christ, should thirst after one another's 
blood ! How unlike is this to the spirit and grace of 
the saints of God ! Had it been a joint consent of all 
the household of faith against the kingdom of Satan, 
what cause of joy would it have been, and what 
grounds of hope should we have had ! But, alas, I 
have lived to see every man's sword against his bro- 
ther. O how angry is our God at this ! and though 
he has brought them off with as little bloodshed as 
could be imagined, yet how may we fear it will heighten 
discord among dissenting brethren, fill them with 
jealousy against one another, and hinder hopes of an 
accommodation ! In what desperate troubles is my na- 
tive country involved, and also my dear relatives ! 
How will the exasperated commonalty rage against 
the leaders in this affair ! But there is hope in Israel 
concerning this thing, and all our help is from above. 
I desire also to make some improvement of the other 
sad afflicting providence relating to my child. Surely 
there is something amiss in us, or God would not have 
dealt so with us. O that his design may be thoroughly 
accomplished in us and upon us! It is good for us 
neither to slight it as an inconsiderable providence, nor 
be too much dejected by it, but to observe God's hand. 
David was affected with his illegitimate infant's death, 
though afterwards he encouraged himself; but the 
gospel covenant may revive our spirits in hope both 
for ourselves and seed. Were it not for a firm per- 
suasion our souls have of covenant mercy, how sadly 
might we bewail the state of dying infants ! but the 
promise belongs to us and our children. Though God 
hath taken one child, he hath left the other two, and 
will, I hope, make them of some service to glorify him 

VOL. I. F 


in his church militant. O how gracious is the Lord ! 
sometimes he takes away those comforts we can best 
spare, and afterwards proceeds to take away those in 
which we conceive our life, and our all are bound up. 
O that by our non-improvement of this, we may not 
provoke him to touch us nearer the quick." 

Mr. Hey wood's situation at this time was singularly 
distressing. His domestic trial was severely felt, being 
a man of strong natural feelings ; his attempts to pro- 
mote church discipline were violently opposed by some 
who ought to have been assistants in the work ; and 
opposition was increased by vehement political pre- 
judices. The unchristian and outrageous measures of 
his opponents would exceed belief, were they not re- 
corded in his own words. " At this time," he says, 
" men triumphed over us with intolerable pride, threat- 
ened sequestration, shot off a pistol under our window, 
and had once almost driven me from my dear people. 
Once, indeed, I had resolved to go within a day or two, 
but being better advised, I thought it best to abide the 
trial ; for I knew I was not guilty, no, not in the 
breach of their own law. Little, ah ! little did I think, 
that persons whom God hath made instruments of my 
trouble would have proved so. A military gentleman 
in the neighbourhood, to whom my heart was much 
endeared as a christian friend, and who had expressed 
the like affection for me, sent for me, and in private 
discourse obtained a full discovery of my opinion about 
state concerns, and, with some misinterpretations, 
divulged the same among the soldiers and in a public 
meeting at the chapel. Others were sent on purpose 
to tempt me to speak, and catch me in my words, 
whom I formerly judged as genuine friends. These 
strictly marked me, and without my observation wrote 
down what might be thought an accusation against 


me. Some suspected me of having held correspondence 
with those in Lancashire, and have been much afraid 
for themselves, lest they should be unawares surprised 
in their houses. Others have watched all night, and 
kept an observant eye on my habitation, as if I were 
their enemy and contrived mischief against them ; 
whereas the searcher of hearts knows that such things 
never entered my thoughts. Some have sent an un- 
christian-like note to me in the pulpit, while I was 
preaching, to distract me : and others have left the 
place with a resolution never to hear me again, circu- 
lated strange reports and lies concerning me, charged me 
with untruths originating in their own mistakes, called 
me and my way no better than popery, resolved and 
threatened, with bitter and insulting scorn, to thrust me 
from my dear congregation, took advantage from my 
too hasty resolution to send for another minister, and 
do still threaten to bring in another. Though some 
pretend more love, others wish to prejudice me to the 
utmost, to deprive me of my due rents, and resolve to 
hinder what they can of the people's subscription for 
my maintenance. These things seem sadly to make 
against me, and are very distressing, all circumstances 
being duly weighed; for some of those that oppose me 
are, I hope, truly pious : some of them have been my 
bosom friends, and if ever they have received good for 
their souls, it has been by my ministry, (as they have' 
acknowledged) and have more reason to respect me 
than others, by the common law of gratitude. Some 
young persons have attained to a mighty height of 
pride and presumption, whose parents were my cordial 
friends, and gave them serious charges to be faithful ta 
me. Some M^ho have many times confessed their faults 
against me, have returned and done me much mischief. 
Sometimes I have been provoked to passion, and given 

F 2 


vent to the depravity of my heart, which has occasion* 
ed me much trouble. I have been charged with what 
my soul is most averse to, division and contention : 
this goes very near my heart. Whatever is or may be 
the issue, God is my witness how much my soul hath 
breathed after love and unity amongst Christians, ho\V 
(too immoderately I fear) I have followed peace with all 
men, especially in endeavouring to produce concord be- 
tween differing bi'ethren. But, alas! what a sad thing 
that it has been unavailable, yea, that I should be 
charged as a fire-brand. I desire to take up my cross, 
it may be a direct punishment for my excessive desire for 
peace. God is just, but I am vile ; I humbly kiss the 
rod, and accept the punishment of my sin. My com- 
fort is, the testimony of my conscience, that in simpli- 
city and godly sincerity I have had my conversation, 
in doctrine and practice, many years : and I can, by 
the grace of God, appeal to my adversaries. The 
charge is, I am a troubler in Israel and an enemy to 
Caesar, though I have kept myself quiet and peaceable 
in my place and never advised an insurrection, when 
dissatisfied with the army's late innovations. I have 
been silent unto man, unless provoked to declare my 
apprehensions ; for I have rather desired to open my 
complaints to God, who is able to redress these things 
in his due time. Surely God would teach me by these 
events, not to trust in man, nor to put confidence in a 
brother; and would shew me the instability of my surest 
comforts, and how bitter all my sweets m.ay prove. O 
that I could open my bosom more to God, my sure and 
faithful friend in heaven, make more haste to get out 
of this world, and long more to be at rest. Then I shall 
never fear soldiers coming with weapons to apprehend 
me, courts of justice to try me, witnesses to swear against 
me, nor the executioner to take away my life." 


About the commencement of Mr. Heywood's troubles 
at Coley, Sir Richard Houghton of Houghton Tower, 
together with the invitation of the people, sent him a 
presentation to the vicarage of Preston, worth at that 
time about £100. per annum. His resolution to re- 
jnain in the place where he had commenced his pasto- 
ral labours, and rejection of the flattering proposal, 
were not adopted but upon the most mature delibera- 
tion, serious prayer, and firm belief of the will of hea- 
ven, and give decisive evidence of the purity of his 
motives, and the integrity of his conduct. The impar- 
tial manner in which he endeavoured to ascertain the 
path of duty, and his willingness to walk in it, will appear 
from the following meditations on this occasion : " Re- 
flect a little, O my soul," he says, " on a present provi- 
dence which puts thee to a stand, and beware of ad- 
venturing upon any thing without direction from 
above. Thou hast an invitation to remove to ano- 
ther people : look about thee, and inquire what is 
thy course. There are many cogent reasons both 
ways, and thy case is somewhat intricate. As things 
are represented to thee, the other is the more desirable 
place in many respects. They are a rich, numerous, 
and intelligent congregation ; there is a pleasant situa- 
tion, comfortable accommodation, abundant mainte- 
nance assured thee during life, discipline comfortably 
established, and the Lord's supper duly administered; 
the place also is near some of thy dear relations in the 
ministry, and many faithful ministers, whose praise is 
in all the churches, and whose society may be helpful 
to thee. Besides, thou hast a clear call on all hands, 
the unanimous invitation of the serious people without 
opposition from the rest, the full and free donation of 
it by the worthy patron, and encouragement by some 
neighbouring ministers. On the other hand, there are 


some discouragements amongst thine own people, in- 
clining thee to a removal ; such as the present obstruc- 
tion to enjoying the ordinance of the Lord's supper, 
shortness of a comfortable maintenance, want of a con- 
venient habitation, and perverseness of some of the 
people, especially among themselves. These things do 
a little puzzle and trouble me at present, yet have not 
much prevailed to unsettle me, or remove my heart 
from my poor, dear, and affectionate people. Who 
knows but that God has sent this as a temptation to 
try how I love my congregation, and how I am affects 
ed towards preferment? Blessed be my God, I have 
some counter- working arguments to persuade me to 
continue. 1. This people have had the first-fruits of 
my ministerial labours. Though I was a child and 
not fit to stand up in a pulpit, yet they made choice 
of me to be their minister, which is to me a wonder 
and doth endear me to them. 2. Their choice hath 
been confirmed and their love increased. It is nothing 
for strangers to delight hearers, but to keep up lively 
expressions of affection for nearly seven years together, 
is something more than ordinary in these unstable 
days. 3. The considerable success of my poor labours 
in this place. Though I be nothing, the least of saints, 
and not worthy to be called a minister, yet I cannot 
say I have laboured in vain, for God hath given me 
divers seals to my ministry, which is not only the work 
of free grace, but some inducement to proceed in God's 
work among this people. 4. The door of hope is open 
here for the promotion of the gospel and settlement of 
religion, arising from the hopefulness of young persons 
looking heaven-Avards, the external reformation of 
many, the general willingness of most to attend at 
wisdom's gates, the great interest God hath given me 
in men's hearts, excepting the prejudices of a few 


only. 5. Their many favours to me, both in my single 
and married condition, have much affected my heart. 
If I should now cast these behind my back, and be 
ready to forget the bestowers, I might be justly charg- 
ed with ingratitude, which I would ever abominate. 
6. The serious advice of my dearest friends for my 
continuance, together with the reasons of their advice, 
whose counsel I highly value. Besides, there are the 
importunities of my people, the complacency my dear 
partner hath had here, and our concurrent inclination 
for continuance. 7. The heart-breaking trouble I 
know there would be on all sides at parting, and the 
sad effects I foresee would attend my removal, some- 
thing of which I have seen in a neighbouring congrega- 
tion, with divisions, heart-burnings, contentions, and 
the probable want of the means of grace. There is 
danger of the people having to wander to other places, 
or that some profane or erroneous person may be 
thrust upon them, the thoughts of which would embit- 
ter my comforts elsewhere, from concern for their 
souls. These, and such like arguments have prevailed 
with me for further continuance, and if it be the will 
of God, I desire I may continue here to my dying day. 
I Avish to spend my days where God hath done me so 
much good ; for he hath avigmented my poor talents, 
and hath not diminished but increased my worldly 
estate, so that, as my reverend father Angier saith to 
me, ' It is ill transplanting a tree that thrives well in 
the soil.' Listen not, O my soul, to the pleadings of 
flesh and blood. This base heart will say, I scorn to 
live on alms, or be indebted to my people for wages ; 
I must have things convenient for my station, and 
keep such equipage as other ministers : and will £40. 
a-year maintain a family, support hospitality, and pro- 
vide for children ? Pride will prompt thee to think 


Avell of thyself, to esteem thyself worthy of a better 
situation, and that this obscure, vulgar auditory is too 
low a sphere for thy abilities. Covetousness and ambi- 
tion will call thee higher, bid thee shew thyself to the 
world, get what means thou canst, and carry more sail 
in better company. But, O my soul, learn to distin- 
guish wisely betwixt grace and natui'e, temptations to 
sin and occasions of good, sacred impulses for the glory 
of God and sinful motives for thy own interests : 
learn the great gospel lessons of humility and self- 
denial. Do what good thou canst out of the view of 
others, yet resist not opportunities of doing greater 
good, nor be ashamed of Christ in the world. Work 
hard for God, and beware of ostentation : above all, 
beware of covetous and aspiring thoughts, and affect 
not, with Diotrephes, to have the preeminence. Dost 
thou not remember that love of the world is enmity to 
God, and is the root of all evil ? Consider how many 
have fallen by prosperity, that stood firm in adversity: 
and hast thou more grace and strength than they? 
Hast thou not a weak head and a weaker heart ? 
Canst thou sail dexterously by the rock on which 
others have split, who have turned aside after filthy 
lucre, embraced this present world, and pierced them.. 
selves through with many sorrows ? Where is thy 
faith ? Is not God's providence the best inheritance ? 
Did not God work a miracle for Elijah ? and is bis 
hand shortened that he cannot save ? When Christ 
sent his disciples without scrip or purse, lacked they 
any thing ? Is not God all in all, and able to make a 
little go as far as much ? What occasion hast thou to 
question his providence ? did he ever fail thee ? Doth 
he not ordinarily so dispose things, that they that have 
little have no want, and they that have much have no^ 
thing to spare ? Have not some of thy near relations 


experienced this truth ? Ah ! my unbelieving heart, 
take heed how thou dost distrust God. Take some of 
the arguments whereby thou wouldst silence the unbe- 
lief of thy people, and bring them hom.e to thyself. 
Blessed be God, the temptation to covetousness hath 
prevailed little with me, but there is reason for caution. 
The sense of fancied enjoyment provokes greater de- 
sires after profit, and an increased income enlarges, ra- 
ther than satisfies the appetite : this is the vanity and 
vexation of things below. If thou hast food and rai- 
ment for thyself and thine, be content, and say with 
Jacob, ' It is enough.' My resolution and desire are to 
live neither above nor below my place ; so to pass 
through the world, that I may not dishonour my God, 
discredit his gospel, nor bring a reproach on the minis- 
try, either by careless prodigality or haggard poverty. 
If my want may advantage the common cause of Chris- 
tianity, I care not if I beg my bread from door to door, 
so that I may effectually bring more souls to Jesus 
Christ ; though blessed be God there is no need, and 
I hope never will be, in this land : but if there were, 
I hope God will rather help me to suffer all things 
than cease from my work, ' for woe is to me if I preach 
not the gospel.' Since I have concluded to remain 
where I am, — may I be more useful, and be assisted in 
my work, that the secret of God may be on my taber- 
nacle : if I conscientiously take care of my duty, God 
will take care of my comfort. Let others go from 
their people on slight occasions, I consider it a matter 
of consequence, and shall, I hope, make it a matter of 
conscience. I dare not resist a call from God, yet I 
would diligently inquire his mind. I stand m hivio, 
with two ways before me, and that way which God 
shall direct, and in which I can do most good, I wish to 
choose, though it be against my worldly interest. 


Here I resolve still to continue, by the good hand of 
God upon me, ; this is the flock over which God liath 
made me overseer. May he help me to watch over 
them till Christ be formed in them ! May I long after 
their real good in Christ, and see religion prosper ! 
May it be said, ' This and that man were born here,* 
and may Christ see of the travail of his soul and be 
satisfied !" 

The changes in the government of this land, from 
the death of Charles in 1649 to the beginning of 1660, 
had been numerous. Many evils had been experienced 
by the arbitrary measures of Cromwell and the lawless 
proceedings of the army, which made numbers anxious 
for the return of the exiled family : among these, Mr. 
Hey wood must be enumerated. The restoration of 
Charles II. to the British throne he welcomed as an 
auspicious event, though he " rejoiced with trembling." 
When reflecting on this sudden change, he thus ex- 
presses himself: " Lift up thine eyes, my soul, and 
behold the face of things abroad. After a dark and 
gloomy winter comes a heart-reviving spring. What 
a change has been effected in half a year ! Surely 
there is a gracious, moving wheel of providence in all 
these vicissitudes. Usurpers have had the seat of 
jurisdiction, have held the reins in their hands, and 
driven on furiously these twelve years. They com- 
manded a toleration of all but truly tender consciences, 
cast off parliaments of their own appointing at their 
pleasure, and threatened sequestration, for all who 
would not fall down and worship the golden image of 
their invention. They turned out our nobles, made 
our illustrious kingdom a confused commonwealth, an 
imaginary free state, while they deprived the peoj)le of 
their native privilege of electing their own members to 
sit in parliament. But when they had doubled Atha- 


iiali's time of usurpation, down they came from the 
highest dignity to the lowest ignominy. Strange 
events happened between September 1659, and May 
1660. God is in the heavens, and doeth whatsoever 
pleaseth him : he hath glorified his great name, vindi- 
cated his truth and promises, and encouraged his peo- 
ple. He hath restored our civil rights, and given us 
hope of a just settlement. I must however confess, 
we are in a precarious state, being afraid lest the su- 
preme governor should prove wicked, frown on the 
faithful of the land, obstruct the work of reformation, 
set up again the abrogated ceremonies, subject us to 
tyranny under an insulting hierarchy, corrupt God's 
pure worship, and turn gospel discipline into courts of 
formality. I'hese things are feared from the flattering 
sycophants, who will flock about the newly created 
king. But shall our surmisings hinder our rejoicing ? 
Who knows but the twelve years' banishment has pre- 
pared the king to be an understanding David ? Let 
us wait on God, keep his ways, and trust him with 
events." The fears entertained by Mr. Heywood were 
but too soon realized. On the return of Charles, those 
who had been so violent in their opposition to Mr. H. 
became silent, and, for a short time, he peaceably and 
successfully exercised his ministry. This season of 
comfort was but of short duration ; for in less than 
two years from the king's restoration, Mr. H. began to 
experience those trials for nonconformity, the parti- 
culars of which will be related in the subsequent his- 
tory of his life. His sufferings for conscience' sake 
were preceded by a trial of a domestic nature, the 
most distressing to his feeling-s. 

Mrs. Elizabeth Heywood was not only the wife of 
his youth, but the object of his pure choice and sin- 
cere affection. During the six years they had spent 


ill the matrimonial state, God gave them three sons, 
the youngest of whom was soon called to heaven ; he 
helped them mutually to share each other's joys and 
sorrows, and maintained, if not increased, that love 
which brought them together. Mrs. Heywood's con- 
stitution, which was naturally weak, had been im- 
paired by repeated bodily afflictions, especially since 
her marriage. Her kind father, perceiving the decayed 
state of her health, and hoping that her native air 
might be of some benefit, sent for her to Denton. 
April 18, 1661, Mr. H. his wife, and two children, 
took a journey into Lancashire. Soon after their ar- 
rival at Denton, Mrs. H. appeared to revive, and 
hopes were entertained of her recovery ; but her dis- 
order was incurable: she soon relapsed, and her rapid 
decline terminated in death, on the 26th of May. Mr. 
Heywood thus describes his feelings, and gives a por- 
trait of her character : " What a sad breach hath the 
Lord made in my bosom comforts ! O my soul, he 
hath taken away thy dear partner ; the heaviest blow 
that ever I experienced in my outward enjoyments. 
I may say with Naomi, * the Lord hath dealt very bit- 
terly with me. I went out full, and the Lord hath 
brought me home again empty.' We went with the 
whole of our family to visit our native country, and 
in less than two months, lost not only a member, but 
a main pillar thereof — the wife of my youth, a plant 
of grace, strong in faith, though weak in body. Her 
old nature was long decaying, but her spiritual strength 
rapidly increased. The Lord had been long adorning 
her soul with heavenly graces, that she might be as a 
bride made ready for the marriage of the Lamb. I 
have no cause to lament her condition, but my own ; 
the loss is mine, the gain hers ; and both unspeakable. 
She is now put into the enjoyment of that which is 


riot attainable here ; she is with Christ, which is best 
of all. Her many doubts and fears are lost in the 
beatific vision. Her sad complaints are changed for 
the triumphant song of Moses and the Lamb ; her 
prayers and tears, for joys and praises ; her sins and 
sufferings, for perfect holiness and happiness ; her 
much lamented duties and performances, for uninter- 
rupted communion with the Lord. She is removed 
from a tempestuous sea to a quiet haven, where the 
weary are at rest, and the wicked cease from troubling. 
She will never now have cause to complain of hard 
usage from friends or foes, of slanderous reports and 
falsehoods, of pains and sicknesses of body, of losses 
and crosses in estate, of sad tidings in church affairs, 
of mournful dissentions among brethren, and of the 
sins and licentiousness of the times : these things are 
to her as a tale that is told, and if there be any re- 
membrance of them, it is without the least regret. 
Alas, we poor mortals speak of heaven enigmatically ! 
But the veil of natural and sinful infirmity is with- 
drawn from the blessed eyes of her immortal spirit. 
I have not the least ground of fear relative to her ; 
nay, while she was with me, I had always better hopes 
of her state than my own : and though she expressed 
not much to others, yet she was familiarly acquainted 
with the Lord in secret duties, and with her own 
heart, by observing its movements in self-examination. 
Her soul knew, in some degree, the way and fruit of 
ascending to heaven, and now she is gone to take pos- 
session. But here I am, a poor, bewildered creature, 
left behind to conflict with a world of sinful allure- 
ments, and anxious cares and fears, with legions of 
infernal spirits, and numerous troops of inward foes. 
Woe is me, that I dwell in Meshech ! When shall I 
go and appear before God? Had I made the same 


haste in holiness, I had also made her haste to happi- 
ness ; had my soul conversed as much with God as 
hers, I might have enjoyed the immediate presence of 
God as soon as she : Enoch was too good for earth, 
therefore God took him. Had I been as ready for 
heaven, I must not have stayed behind ; but the will 
of the Lord be done! As I am satisfied her time was 
come, so I desire to wait my appointed time : I am 
not unwilling to live, nor afraid to die. O what is it 
that caused the Lord to make such a breach in my 
comforts? Surely he hath written bitter things against 
me, and made me to possess the sins of my youth. To 
lose a wife, and such a wife, is no small lovss f How 
dear was 1 to her ! and what reason have I that she 
should be as dear to me ? O the prayers and tears 
she constantly poured forth with and for both me and 
mine ! O what excellent counsel the Lord hath enabled 
her to give me ! O what usefulness and faithfulness in 
the things of this life ! yea, what abundant advantage 
I many times received from her in my public work and 
calling, both as a Christian and a minister ! Methinks 
the house is lonely without her, and all my other com- 
forts present to me but a mournful scene. But why 
do I deplore my state ? My work is to mind the 
Lord's design. As she is made a partaker of happi- 
ness, may I be made a partaker of holiness ! as she is 
an infinite gainer, may I be no loser ! Should I reap 
no benefit from this sad aflfliction, I shall have more 
cause to lament than for the loss of her : I may expect 
some further blow if I do not profit by this. May the 
loss of so genuine a Christian, cause the existence 
or increase of some grace within me ! May her 
prayers, counsels, covenants, and example appear in 
her offspring in after generations, that it may be saidj 
this is the seed of the blessed of the Lord." 


This event being one in which Mr. Heywood was so 
deeply interested, it is no wonder he repeatedly notices 
it in his private papers ; and every record proves, not 
only the strength of his affection for his beloved partner, 
but the earnestness of his desire that it might be sanc- 
tified to his spiritual advantage. He says, " It was 
the heaviest personal stroke that ever I experienced ; 
yet the Lord hath abundantly satisfied my heart, and 
supported my spirit under it, partly by the considera- 
tion of her happy condition, and partly by my serious 
apprehension of approaching calamities. True it is, 
there are many things that tend to aggravate, as well 
as on the other hand to moderate this affliction ; but 
that which I would study is, what is God's design 
therein, that I may derive some advantage from it, for 
in all my loss the want of the fruit of affliction is the 
greatest evil. She was as much a comfort to her fa- 
ther as she was to her husband ; she grew up to a 
wonderful maturity far beyond her years. I want her 
at every turn, in every place, and in every affair ; me- 
thinks I am but half myself without her. But why 
should I complain ? she is at rest, God's will is done, 
and I may shortly follow after. Sure I am she cannot 
return, nor doth she desire it ; so then I ought not. 
But if the affliction is deeper, and more painful than 
any thing I ever experienced ; the supporting, quicken- 
ing and comforting grace vouchsafed, is also beyond 
any thing I ever before enjoyed. My God supplies all 
my wants according to his riches in glory, by Christ 
Jesus ; only I am afraid of losing this frame of sph'it 
under the dispensation ; but my encouragement is the 
same as Paul's, 'My grace is sufficient for thee.'" 

In alleviation of his distress, God had granted him 
a pious, faithful, and kind servant, Martha Bairstow, 
who remained in his family about sixteen yeai's, and. 


did not forsake him in the midst of his severe 
trials. A few months after Mrs. Heywood's decease, 
he observes, " I keep house with one maid and my 
two little sons ; and I bless God we live happily to- 
gether. I cannot be better furnished with a servant. 
She is my child as well as servant, one of my first and 
best converts to the faith, and that spiritual relation 
hath much endeared her to me. She is sober, steady, 
and of a tender conscience, full of scruples, and fearing 
God above many ; she is laborious and faithful, one in 
whom the children take great delight ; a great mercy 
to me in my solitary condition."* 

* Such a servant as IMartha proved herself to be to Mr. Hey- 
wood, had a just claim to his affection, and we accordingly find he 
took much interest in her welfare, as will appear from the folloAV- 
ing extracts, which include much of her history. " My servant- 
maid, Martha Bairstow, was sent abroad into service and hardship 
when only ten years of age. She has lived with me fifteen years. 
Her relations have disowned her ; and when her father made his 
will, he left her much less than any of the others. He died, and 
was buried Dec. 1, 16/3. Her relations were churlish; but have 
this day, Dec. 10, divided the goods and money : her share is 
^20. She feared there would be much wrangling, but matters 
were peacefully carried on to-day, though formerly she has re- 
turned home weeping. She is satisfied with her little portion, and I 
own this as a return of prayer to compose spirits, though she is 
put off with loss." About eighteen months after this, she left Mr. 
H's service to become the wife of James Tetlow, a member of the 
church at Northowram. On this occasion JMr. H. says, " This 
hath been a solemn day on account of IMartha's removal, my old 
servant, who hath lived with me about sixteen years, hath been 
faithful and careful of me and mine, afflicted with me in all my 
afflictions, and sharing with me in all conditions. She is now mar- 
ried to J. Tetlow. I loved her as a child. She was full of heaviness 
at parting. ]My heart Avas much affected in secret prayer ; but in 
the family, our affections overcame us, when reading and comment- 
ing on Gen. xxiv, respecting the proceedings of Abraham's faith- 
ful servant, and Rebecca's departure from home. I prayed near an 
hour, and God wonderfully wrought on us. Now, there is not one 
in my family, but myself, that was in it when first erected." 


Ingratitude of Charles II. to the Nonconformists — DeclaratiGu 
against private Meetings — Mr. Ileywood's Citation to York, and 
Reflections — His Suspension — The Act of Uniformity — Non- 
cofformists not guilty of Schism — Excomiminication of Mr. Hey- 

, wood — Preaching at Coley Chapel prevented — Another Excom- 
munication — Private Services — Frequent Alarms — Third Excom- 
munication — Exclusion fro7n public Ordinances — Warrants issued 
— Occasional Labours— Violent Opposition — The Conventicle Act 
— Frequent Opportunities of Preaching — Activity of Mr. Hey- 
wood's Enemies — A Gospel Minister at Coley Chapel — Mr. 
Heywood's Endeavours to obtain Absolution — His Visit to Lan- 
cashii'e — Journey into the South — Preservation from Dangers— 
A providential Supply — The Plague of London. 

Charles II. was chiefly indebted to the influence of 
the Nonconformists for his restoration. Had they 
united their energies in opposing his return, it is pro- 
bable the family of the Stuarts would never have re- 
ascended the British throne : but so far from opposing 
him, many secretly desired, and others publicly pleaded 
for his restoration. They had just reason to suppose 
his return to authority would be attended with the 
happiest effects. The nation had frequently been con- 
vulsed by civil discord, and the promises he had 
made when in exile, encouraged their brightest hopes. 
If they had no solid reason to believe that church 
government and modes of worship would be established 
on principles opposed to episcopacy, they justly ex- 
pected they would be permitted to retain their stations 
in the Establishment, or, at least, be protected in the 
peaceable worship of God according to their views of 

VOL. I. G 


scripture and the dictates of their consciences. The 
declaration of Charles at Breda, dated April 4, 1660, 
was sufficient to raise these expectations. In that 
public document he had said : " We do declare a 
liberty to tender consciences, and that no man shall be 
called in question for differences of opinions, which da 
not disturb the peace of the kingdom." Gratitude to 
his best friends and faithfulness to his own promises, 
required the protection of the Nonconformists in the 
exercise of their natural and religious rights. Many 
of them had ventured their lives in the royal cause, 
and were the first to welcome his return. When he 
passed through the city on his way to Westminster, 
May 29, 1660, the Nonconformist ministers in London 
and its neighbourhood attended him with acclamations, 
and appointed one of the most venerable of their num- 
ber to present him with a richly adorned bible, which 
he promised " to make the rule and government of his 
life." But scarcely had he entered on the regal office, 
when, after a pretended attention to the requests of the 
Nonconformists, he sanctioned the most violent proceed- 
ings of the high church party, and gave his countenance 
to the most shameful persecution of his best subjects. 

The first step taken in the persecution of the Non- 
conformists, during the reign of Charles, was a decla- 
ration to prevent private meetings. Many of the 
Nonconformists, conscious of the integrity of their 
hearts, and the sincerity of their loyalty, could not 
suppose the declaration originated in opposition to- 
them, but from political motives. " This day, Jan. 23, 
1661," says Mr. H. " we had designed to meet together 
for fasting and prayer in private, but are prevented by 
a declaration from authority. The truth is, our dread 
sovereign, at the first and hitherto, hath allowed us 
abundant liberty for religious exercise both in public 


aiki private ; but his clemency has been abused, which 
hath occasioned this severe and universal prohibition.* 
The fanatical and schismatical party, truly so called, 
have, by their unwise and unwarrantable practices, 
troubled all the people of God throughout this nation, 
and have rendered the sweet savour of christian con- 
verse to be abhorred. The Lord judge between such 
as fast for strife and debate, and such as fast with gra- 
cious hearts and designs — between loyal subjects and 
despisers of authority. But why do I lay the blame 
oii others and not on ourselves ? The actions of men 
and edicts of princes could not have abridged our 
liberties, had not our sins procured these things. Just, 
very just is what has come upon us, for we have been 
unprofitable under our privileges : they have been so 
ordinary, that our hearts are grown indifferent, and 
less than ordinary preparations have served for extra- 
ordinary duties. We met as if loth to meet; our 
prayers were full of deadness, unbelief, and vanity : 
it is therefore just, we should not be permitted to 
meet for prayer. We too much aimed at applause for 
our gifts, and God hath taken away the occasion of 
venting the pride and hypocrisy of our hearts. We 
did not improve the society of our christian friends, 
and therefore we must not now enjoy it. I doubt not 
we have been too much abroad and too little at home, 
religious in company, but careless in our closets : now 
we must learn to enter into our closet and shut the 
door upon us. It is the property of a Christian toniake 
a virtue of necessity, and wisely to improve this pre- 
sent restraint of christian liberty, which our gracious 
God will restore to us if he see it useful." 

* Such was the favourable construction Mr. Heywood was dis- 
posed to put on this proceedings but he had cause afterwards to 
think otherwise. 

G 2 


The prelates, being reinstated at the restoration orf 
Charles, exerted their power to force the clergy to a 
iiniformity in ceremonies. Some, more eager and 
zealous than others, cited great numbers of ministers 
to their ecclesiastical courts, and punished them for 
disobedience before they were fully invested with legal 
authority. In various parts of the land, Noncon- 
formists were harassed by litigious suits in spiritual 
courts, a full year before the Act of Uniformity passed. 
August 25, 1661, the advocates for uniformity ob- 
tained a person from another township, to tender a 
common-prayer book to Mr. Heywood, when going 
into the pulpit. He enquired by what authority he 
presented it? to which the man made no reply, but 
laid it on the cushion. Mr. H. removed it, and went 
on with the service in the usual manner, and was much 
assisted in the work of the day. September 13, a 
bailiff of Halifax, who had lately been made an appa- 
ritor, brought Mr. H. a citation to appear at St Peter's 
in York, that day fortnight. His friends advised him 
to attend in person or by proxy, lest he should be ex- 
communicated for contempt. He went on the appoint- 
ed day, and the court inquired if he had a proctor. 
He replied, he w^as there in person to ansv/er any 
charge. They ordered him to attend there that day 
three weeks. He requested to be informed, what was 
the charge laid against him. They replied, he should 
be told the next time he came. Having occasion to go 
into Lancashire on the appointed day, he neither ap- 
peared nor employed a proctor. On his return home, 
he found another citation to appear at York on the fol- 
lowing Friday ; but the time being so short, and Lady 
Watson having sent him word that the court as yet 
had no authority, he did not think proper to attend. 
After this, he was again cited to appear before them ; 


and when he attended, he was again dismissed with 
promise of a fair hearing the next time. Having been 
put to so much trouble and expense, and believing the 
court possessed no legal authority, he refused to attend 
any more. 

The pious frame of mind with which he entered on 
that course of trials, which he experienced for noncon- 
formity, and the principles by which he was influenced, 
are thus described by him : " I have this day the unac- 
customed news of a citation to appear before an 
ecclesiastical court at York, this day fortnight. The 
cause I imagine is for not reading the book of Common 
Prayer, which was tendered me about a fortnight since. 
This is a strange trial to me, and I am unfit to manage 
it, not having had to deal with things of this nature 
before. Reflect on thyself, O my soul, and see what 
use thou canst make of this startling providence. 
Should this appear a strange thing to thee ? Is it not 
the same as many of my brethren in England have 
already met with ? Hast thou not been expecting it ? 
Is it any new thing, that men should rage and unite 
together to prejudice Christ's flock ? Dost thou plead 
exemption from the cross ? Dost thou not need it, 
and may not the hand of God in this do thee good ? 
Are not they blessed who are persecuted for righteous- 
ness' sake ? If thou didst suffer as an evil-doer, thou 
wouldst have little comfort. Examine on what grounds 
thou dost refuse this English liturgy. Is it from prin- 
ciples of conscience or contradiction? hast thou no 
bye-ends in what thou dost ? Consider, an erroneous 
conscience hath carried many very far astray, even to 
die for a mere whim. Self-made crosses will be un- 
comfortable ; and hast thou not cause to suspect thy 
s own judgment? Consider seriously before thou dost 
enter on sufferings. Thy poor congregation is dear to 


thee ; and why wilt thou leave them to the rage of men 
that hate Christ's flock, and to the charge of some in- 
dolent, formal reader ? "Why wilt thou render thyself 
incapable of preaching the gospel, and be laid aside as 
a useless log? Wilt thou undergo the imputation of 
disobedience to a lawful magistrate, whose interest 
thou hast pleaded and suffered for ? Why wilt thou 
put thyself into the hands of that merciless court, which 
may be the ruin of thy estate and liberty ? But, get 
thee behind me, Satan, thou art an offence to me; keep 
silence, flesh and blood, in this matter. What have I 
to do with carnal reasonings ? Hide nothing from thy 
eyes that may tend to satisfaction, yet have nothing to 
do with the unfruitful works of darkness. Hast thou 
not carefully studied the word of God, consulted what 
books and friends thou couldst meet with in this case, 
wept and prayed before the Lord, that he would disco- 
ver to thee what thou shouldst do, that he would 
remove thy darkness, and carry thee forward on clear 
grounds of scripture and conscience ? My heart is 
abundantly satisfied that I cannot subscribe without 
sinning against God, wronging my own conscience, 
giving offence to the people of God, gratifying the pro- 
fane and obstinate, and hardening superstitious persons 
in their idolatrous practices. Well then, my soul, 
since thou art thus resolved, prepare thyself for suffer- 
ing, and glory that thou art counted worthy to suffer 
for the name of Christ. It is no small honour that 
God hath singled thee out as the first in this part of 
the country, to bear witness to his cause : he that hath 
called thee to it, will help thee in it. He can make 
babes and sucklings instruments of his praise, and a 
young Timothy to witness a good confession before 
many witnesses, as well as an aged Paul ; yea, he can 
make thy sufferings more advantageous to his gospel. 


and more cheering to thy heart than all thy preaching. 
The sufferings of preachers for truth have a wonderful 
influence, in confirming believers and making new con- 
verts. Leave God to look to his own interest, and take 
thou care of thy duty. Speak not unadvisedly with 
thy lips; entertain no grudgings in thy breast ; follow 
the example of thy precious Saviour; revile not again; 
pray heartily for thy greatest persecutors, both for the 
pardon of their sins and the salvation of their souls ; 
keep thy way, and the issue will be good. The Lord 
can soon restrain the spirits of enemies, or blunt the 
edge of their malice, and bring thee off with honour 
and advantage. They are no losers who suffer for 
Christ ; for he himself suffers with them, and will, no 
doubt, support and encourage them, so that they will 
prefer afflicted godliness to prosperous wickedness." 

During a whole year, Mr. Heywood was harassed 
by repeated citations, and kept in continual suspense 
respecting the exercise of his ministry at Coley, not 
knowing but every sermon he preached in the chapel 
might be his fai-ewell. These religious opportunities 
he calls " uncertain alms," and says concerning them : 
*' Consider, O my soul, at what uncertainties of late 
thy spiritual food hath been obtained, we may in some 
respects say, ' We have gotten our bread with the peril 
of our lives.' At the close of one sabbath we can 
scarcely reckon on another. We have been in suspense 
and hazard above a year, and yet danger is kept oflf by 
God's hand. Two months since I saw the proctor's 
letter to the apparitor, informing him. that there was a 
suspension out against me, ah ingressu ecclesi(S, which 
was to be speedily put in force, but to this day I have 
heard no more of it : blessed be our good God. On 
Friday we kept a private fast, and April 13, we par- 
took of the Lord's supper without the least intei'rup- 


tion. God sees we have no might against our potent 
enemies, therefore his own arm brings salvation. We 
are just in the condition of the poor saints in Ezra's 
time, who were ashamed to ask of the king a band of 
soldiers, but sought the Lord and he was found of 
them. Though some of the congregations are in a sad 
state, whose teachers are removed into corners, yet we 
may speak a word to our dear people that they may be 
saved, and numbers flock to the solemn assemblies. 
Whence is it, that there is this difference ? We are 
not more deserving than others ; our adversaries are 
as many, active, and implacable as elsewhere : it is 
free grace ! But why does God delight to keep us at 
uncertainties in our spiritual allowances ? Surely it is 
to convince us of his sovereignty, to train us up in the 
life of faith, to prevent our building tabernacles here, 
and to make us think highly of our mercies from the 
danger of losing them : finally, it may be, to stir up in 
our hearts a longing desire for celestial glory, where 
we shall never lose the enjoyment of God." Mr. Hey- 
wood's active opponents could not be content with his 
enjoyment of this temporary indulgence, nor wait for 
his removal by the Act of Uniformity. Having pro- 
cured his suspension from the archbishop's chancellor, 
it was published in Halifax church, June 29, 1662. 
Though suspended from his office as minister at Coley 
chapel, he ventured to take leave of his beloved flock, 
by preaching two or three Lord's days to them. The 
fatal St. Bartholomew's day being so near at hand, he 
made no efforts to procure the removal of his sus- 

The advocates of episcopacy proceeded with a high 
hand soon after the restoration, and at length obtained 
the renowned Act of Uniformity. This Act enjoined, 
that all those ministers who would not comply with its 


requisitions, should resign their situations in the esta- 
blishment on the 24th of August, 1663; and that their 
places should be filled by others in the same manner as 
if they were deceased. The terms of conformity were, 
— " That those ministers should be re-ordained who 
had not been episcopally ordained ; — that they should 
give their assent and consent to all and every thing 
contained and prescribed in and by the book, entitled 
the Book of Common Prayer ; — that they should sub- 
scribe ex animo, " that the book of Common Prayer, 
and of ordaining bishops, priests, and deacons, contain- 
eth in it nothing contrary to the word of God ; — that it 
may be lawfully used, and that they themselves would 
use the form in the said books prescribed, in public 
prayer and administration of the sacraments, and no 
other ; — that they should take the oath of canonical 
obedience to their ordinary ; — that they should abjure 
the . solemn league and covenant ; — and that, besides 
the oath of allegiance and supremacy, they declare it 
is not lawful on any pretence whatsoever to take arms 
against the king, and that they abhor that traitorous 
position, of taking arms by his authority against his 
person, or against those that are commissioned by him." 
The real motives by which those were influenced who 
were most forward and zealous in obtaining the Act of 
Uniformity, appear to have been " wrath and revenge 
in the old clergy, and a servile compliance with the 
court, and distaste of serious religion among the young 
gentry. That this is no rash imputation upon the 
ruling clergy is evident," says Dr. Bates, * " not only 
from their concurrence in passing that law, for actions 
have a language as convincing as that of words ; but 
from Dr. Sheldon then bishop of London, their great 

* Dr. Bates's Funeral Sermon for Mr. Baxter. — Bates' Works, 
vol. iv. p. 329, 330. 

90 LIFE OF THE hev. o. heywood. 

leader, who, when the lord chamberlain Manchester 
told the king, when the act was under debate, ' that he 
was afraid the terms of it were so rigid, that many of 
the ministers would not comply with it ;' he replied, 
* I am afraid they will.' This act was passed after 
the king had engaged his faith and honour in his de- 
claration from Breda, ' to preserve the liberty of con- 
science inviolate,' which promise opened the vi'ay for 
his restoration ; and after the royalists here had given 
public assurance, that all former animosities should be 
buried as rubbish, under the foundation of a universal 
concord." Though the Nonconformist ministers were, 
in general, as loyal and as anxious for the peace of the 
land as any of his majesty's subjects, as earnest in their 
endeavours to maintain the purity of the christian faith 
as the most clamorous for uniformity, and as willing 
to make any sacrifice to promote the good of souls as 
any set of men, they could not comply with the terms 
of this severe act. 

The charge of schism has sometimes been brought 
against the first Nonconformists, but with what pro- 
priety let the Bartholomew act, and the history of 
their sufferings declare ; " They grieved, they mourned, 
they expostulated," says an eloquent American writer,* 
"about things which afflicted their consciences, but they 
thought not of separation. Had they been allowed to 
exonerate themselves from the charge of countenancing 
what, in all sincerity, they disallowed ; or had they 
not been commanded to belie their conviction by an 
explicit approbation of what they abhorred, the name 
of Dissenters from the church of England had never 
been known. Unepiscopal in their judgment they cer- 
tainly were, as were all the continental protestants, 
and all the fathers of the British reformation. They 
* Dr. ]\Iason on Sacramental Communion. 


disliked, they loathed certain exterior observances ; but 
still had they been permitted to dislike and to loathe, 
without exhibiting public disturbance — had they not 
been required to deny what they believed to be truth, 
and to profess what they believed to be falsehood — had 
not the price of their peace in the Establishment been 
rated so high as the perjury of their souls before God, 
they had never been separated from the Church of 
England. As it was, they did not retire, they were 
driven from her bosom ; and they have thus left upon 
record their testimony of confessors to the sacredness 
of that communion which belongs to the church of 
God, and to the criminality of dividing it upon slight 
pretences." These holy members who were thus driven 
from the places in which they had laboured with suc- 
cess, " had wives and children for whom they wished 
to provide ; they had friends among whom they would 
have fondly remained ; they had houses to the attrac- 
tions of which they were feelingly alive : but all these 
they were compelled for conscience' sake to abandon !" 
Nothing but a sense of duty induced them to leave the 
people they loved and the means of their subsistence, 
to endure the various troubles to which their noncon- 
formity exposed them. Their determination was not 
the hasty result of a momentary gust of passion ; they 
prayed and fasted, they reflected and consulted, and at 
length resolved to cast themselves on the kind provi- 
dence of God, rather than violate their consciences. 
The deliberations of Mr. Heywood, and the cautious 
but resolute manner in which he acted on this cri- 
tical occasion, may be regarded as a specimen of 
what many others did, who shared with him in the 
common trial. " O my soul," says he, " was ever the 
hand of God so laid on the ministers of these nations, 
to change them in a day from being (in some sense) 


the life and spirit of the world, to become as dead car- 
casses ? How many lights are thus put under a 
bushel ! Woe is me ! that I have lived to see this day, 
when the builders of the church are counted the 
troublers of Israel, when the chariots and horsemen 
thereof are not thought worthy of their stations, and 
the Lord's stewards turned out of office. It is but a 
little while since the Lord left me, a sad and solitary 
widower, by the loss of my dear and affectionate part- 
ner ; and now I am doubly solitary, in this separation 
from my well-beloved people. The other was sharper 
than any trial I ever met with before, yet this doth ex- 
ceed it ; it is the more bitter, because it reacheth the 
soul : in this, God seems to punish me seven times 
more ; surely he is very angry. But have we merited 
at the hands of men such things as we now suffer? 
What is our transgression and our sin ? At present, 
our work is to ascertain clearly the reasons of our suf- 
fering : the conditions are too hard to be accepted. 
Woe be to us, if we preach not the gospel ! but a 
double woe to us, if we enervate the gospel by legal 
ceremonies. Our people's souls are precious, and we 
ought to take care of them ; but our own souls are 
precious also, and we must not destroy them under 
pretence of saving those of others. Our work is dear 
to us ; but God is dearer, and we must not do the least 
evil to obtain the greatest good. There are worldly 
advantages enough to sway us to conformity, if con- 
science did not answer all the pleas of flesh and blood. 
Should we forsake our christian liberty, and put our 
necks under such a yoke as neither we nor our fathers 
were able to bear ? Should we build again what we 
have destroyed, and make ourselves transgressors ? 
Should we violate solemn covenants, leave the work of 
reformation, and return to Egypt ? It is surely better 


to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to en- 
joy the pleasures of sin for a season. The bargain will 
be too hard to provide a livelihood by making ship- 
wreck of faith and a good conscience. God can ad- 
vance his work without our sinful shifts, and rear up 
monuments to his glory without our complying preva- 
rications : suffering may benefit the gospel as much as 
service, when God calls to it. Would to God we could 
redeem our precious privileges by the loss of worldly 
advantages. It is no pleasure for us to be idle, fain 
would we be labouring in the Lord's vineyard : but 
alas, we are hindered, and woe be to them by whom 
the offence comes. ' Verily there is a reward for the 
righteous : verily he is a God that judgeth in the 
earth.' " 

The sufferings of Mr. Heywood for his nonconfor- 
mity came upon him in quick succession. He was 
suspended from his work as a minister in the Establish- 
ment before the Act of Uniformity required, and, 
within a month of the fatal Bartholomew's day, was 
excommunicated : " And were it just," he says, " how 
formidable would that sentence be ; but ' the curse 
causeless shall not come.' Yet the thing we greatly 
feared is come upon us. The enemies of our liberties 
have gained the upper ground of secular power, and 
obtained statutes against us. This is the day they 
have long and wishfully looked for. The Act of Uni- 
formity struck all Nonconformists dead on Bartholo- 
mew's day, Aug. 24, 1662. But as if that would not 
despatch me so suddenly and effectually as men's ma- 
lice intended, I must have a wound before that which 
was mortal, that I, at least, might die a lingering 
death, like my dearest Lord. A suspension made way 
for my dissolution some months before the act took 
place, whereby I was suspended, ah exercitio officii^ 


from preaching and praying. My excommunication 
was published at Halifax Nov. 2. Now I am as a 
dead man out of mind ; my voice must no more be 
heard upon the mountains of Israel. I am not only 
turned out of the pulpit, but out of the church, and 
must neither speak nor hear God's word. I am cast 
out of the synagogue by men, yet the Lord doth not 
cast me off: though I be as dead, yet through mercy I 
am alive to praise my God, yea, alive to God through 
Jesus Christ. Though I be cast out of the visible 
church-state, yet not out of the mystical body of 
Christ, who can and will take up those that are cast 
out by men. ^I am thrust out from communion with 
a corrupt administration, yet, through rich grace, I 
may enjoy communion with God and his saints in 
private : none can banish me from the presence of 
the Lord. O the days of liberty, the opportunities of 
salvation we have enjoyed ! when God's candle shone 
upon my head, and when, through grace, my candle 
shone upon others ; when, by the light of his love, I 
walked through the darkness of temptation. ' 'Remem- 
bering these things, I pour out my soul in me ; for I 
had s:one with the multitude, I went with them to the 
house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with 
the multitude that kept holy-day.' But those pleasant 
days of the Son of Man are gone for the present ; and 
behold a gloomy day, yea, a dark and lonesome night. 
We must not divine; men forbid, and God doth say, 
amen, in severe displeasure. But shall we desist alto- 
gether ? The word is as burning fire shut up in our 
bones, and though it cannot blaze in public, as a 
beacon on a hill, yet should be glowing in private, to 
enlighten the houses of God's people, and warm the 
hearts of those who are willing to entertain us or our 
message." At the urgent solicitation of his father 


Angier, lie endeavoured to obtain an absolution ; but 
the proctor sent word, that nothing would prevail with 
the chancellor to grant it, unless Mr. Heywood would 
take an oath to obey the authority, and abide by the 
commands, of the church. These terms were too high 
a price at which to purchase ecclesiastical forgiveness. 
Not content with Mr. Heywood's ejectment and ex- 
communication, his opponents were determined to re- 
sist all his attempts to promote the spiritual advantage 
of the people to whom he had ministered in holy things, 
many of whom held him deservedly in very high 
esteem. " Seldom," says he, " doth one affliction come 
alone. I did hope, my restless adversaries would have 
been satisfied with my silence, provided for the place, 
or suffered some provision to be made. It grieved my 
heart to see the people scattered from sabbath to sab- 
bath, and the place left totally vacant without any 
solemn assembly for a long time. I did hope a stranger 
might enjoy the same liberty, as hitherto I have en- 
joyed elsewhere ; therefore I sent for Mr. Leaver,* a 
godly minister out of Lancashire, to preach to my dear 
people, at least a day or two, who with difficulty ob- 
tained access to the pulpit. But the restless malice of 
an implacable enemy, stirred up his active instruments 
to hinder that gospel opportunity. The weather, Dec. 
7th, 1662, was snowy and sharp ; yet God brought 

* Mr. Robt. Lever was ejected from Cockey Chapel, in Ains- 
worth, a place about a mile from the house in which Mr. Heywood 
was born. He was probably a descendant of the Levers of Little 
Lever, one of whom v/as an intimate friend of John Bradford, 
the martyr, and a chaplain to Edward VI. After his ejectment, 
IMr. Lever frequently preached in his own house, and elsewhere, 
as he had opportunities. When the indulgences were issued by 
king Charles, he preached publicly at Bolton, and collected a very 
numerous congregation. He was the first pastor of the dissenting 
chvirch in that town, and died July 4th, 1692, aged 58. 


a great assembly to hear his word. But when we 
were ready to go into the chapel, two of my old oppon- 
ents stopped our course, and charged Mr. Leaver to 
preach at his peril, threatening to disturb us with a 
troop of horse. Upon this resolute and unexpected 
charge we withdrew, returned home, and the con- 
gregation dispersed, which, all things considered, was 
judged most agreeable to scripture example, a gospel 
spirit, and christian prudence. It was a sad disappoint- 
ment ; we went with as great confidence of enjoying 
the ordinances, as in times of the greatest liberty : but 
we see man designs, yet God disposeth. It is danger- 
ous for a civil officer to hinder any good, but to step 
' beyond an official obligation, to do mischief, is double 
wickedness. May the God of heaven open the eyes of 
those who think they do him a service in preventing 
his worship! May they be turned into God's way, 
who are so violent in their own ! ' Father, forgive 
them, for they know not,' or consider not, ' what they 
do.' May the people of God learn to improve the dis- 
pensation ; for our times are in God's hands, not men's. 
May God make the want of an ordinance, an ordinance 
for good !" 

The anathema of one excommunication had already 
been denounced against him at Halifax ; but as if his 
opponents doubted its validity, another was obtained 
from the court at Chester, and published in his native 
parish. Mr. H. had been guilty of preaching a funeral 
sermon, occasioned by the death of a friend at Bolton, 
and for this enormous offence he was cited to appear 
at Chester, and for not attending at the appointed time 
he was excommunicated. The citation was published 
in Bolton church, Dec. 7th, 1662, and his excommuni- 
cation, Jan. 4th, 1663. Warrants also were issued for 
the apprehension of his person, if he publicly ventured 


into Lancashire. On the receipt of this intelligence 
from his relations, he thus writes : " O the wonderful 
malice of men, and straits of a poor worm, that every 
foot would trample to death did not ray God secure 
me ! I did hope my fare would have been no sharper 
than my brethren in the common tribulation. I as- 
sured myself, that if I was thrust out of the pulpit, yet 
I might attend church ; and if I might not preach the 
word for the profit of others, yet I might hear it for my 
own advantage ; but an excommunication renders me 
incapable of this privilege. I thought if I might not 
preach in Yorkshire, yet I might occasionally engage 
in my native county : but all doors are shut against me 
in public : and what remains but that I sit alone and 
keep silence ? O for a frame of heart suitable to my 
state, to mourn in secret for my own sins and my peo- 
ple's pride, in their contempt of ordinances ! When 
shall I come and appear before God in public ? I could 
even envy the sparrows and swallows their near ap- 
proaches to the altar of God ; my soul longeth, yea 
even fainteth for the courts of the Lord. I could 
choose to sit at the threshold as a doorkeeper, rather 
than be admitted into the presence chamber as a prince's 
choicest favourite. Time was, when the Lord's house 
was established on the top of the mountains, and all 
the country flocked to it like doves to their windows ; 
but now we sit alone, like doves in the valley. Time 
was, when not a dog moved his tongue against our 
church assemblies, yea, when many became professors, 
for the fear of the true Israelites fell upon them ; but 
now the men of God cannot go to their work, and the 
saints are scattered abroad. Time was, when we went 
from strength to strength till we appeared before God 
in Zion ; but now God hath weakened our strength in 
the way, and shortened our days, and the bright sea* 

VOL. I. H 


son of our gospel opportunities. O when will they 
return ? when will another day of mercy dawn ?" 

Men did all they could to hinder Mr. H. from doing 
or receiving good ; but many of the people of God in 
his native county highly valued his company and la- 
bours, and opened their houses and hearts to welcome 
him. He cheerfully embraced every opportunity of 
usefulness, and broke the bread of life to multitudes, 
who came to hear him preach in the night, in private 
houses. He also remembered his poor, afflicted people 
at Coley, and preached to them in his own house as 
often as prudence permitted, though the activity of 
his enemies made every such attempt very hazardous. 
He could now bear his testimony from experience to 
the truth of the Saviour's declaration, " Blessed are 
they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake." 
He could say, " Though men forsake me, my God takes 
me up ; and the worse men deal with me, the more 
graciously doth God communicate himself to me, and 
he raiseth me up friends to entertain me with more 
endeared affection. Though I be excommunicated, the 
Lord disposed my dear father Angier to admit me to 
the sealing ordinance of the Lord's supper, March 1st, 
1663, when the Lord wonderfully manifested himself 
to my poor soul, in an awakening, quickening, and 
softening manner, so that I can scarcely ever remember 
having such enlargement in a public ordinance in all 
my life. O that the impression thereof may be lasting, 
and fit me for further service and suffering the re- 
mainder of my days !" 

The state of constant alarm in which he now lived, 
the violence of the persecution that raged against him, 
the holy courage he manifested in what appeared ta 
him the path of duty, and the watchful care of divine 
providence over him, may be learjit from the following^ 


extracts: * " June 10, 1663, there was a large assembly 
at Coley-Hall, where Mr. Jollie was to preach for me; 
as it pleased God I was in Lancashire at that time. 
The soldiers had intelligence, and came to apprehend 
the j)eople, but were disappointed, the persons assembled 
having notice of the design. The same night, the 
soldiers came to my house to search, but found not 
their prey. Since then, they have obtained informa- 
tion concerning several persons that were present, who 
are bound over to the sessions. Others have escaped 
them at presefit, after whom search is made, and some 
they are sending to prison on other accounts. Hitherto 
I have lived quietly at home, though they often watch 
my house to get a clear advantage against me ; but 
though they have known of some solemn meetings, 
which I have attended to preach the word, yet hitherto 
the Lord hath restrained them." 

"August 121th. Towards night, several persons came 
to inform me, that the troopers were coming that night 
to apprehend me, and desired me to go out of the way. 
I told them, I had not broken either God's law or man's 
law, so as to deserve any punishment from man ; there- 
fore I resolved to stay, hoping my integrity would pre- 
serve me, and my known loyalty and attachment to the 
king, be my best apology against the imputations of 
men about plots, which is the common pretence to se- 
cure me : but my escaping would seem to ^^lead guilty. 
Accordingly I stayed, and slept as sweetly as ever I did, 
without the least molestation. Many other times I 
have had the like merciful protection and prevention 
after such alarms. Such is the active malice of some, 
that upon Lord's day last, Dec. 6th, there was ano- 

* These extracts, and many others, are selected from a manu- 
script narrative of Mr. Heywood's life, which he brought down to 
about the fortieth year of his age, and then he commenced his diary. 

H 2 


ther excommunication of me published at Halifax, 
that that business may be surely done : the meaning 
whereof, truly, I cannot tell, but desire to make some 
spiritual use of it, and get so much nearer to God, as 
men cast me off from him." 

*'Oct. 11* I had a call to preach at Shaw chapel, 
in Lancashire, which I willingly embraced, and preach- 
ed there the whole day without any disturbance. 
Though it was a very rainy day, a great number of 
good people assembled from many parts, and there 
were visible stirrings of affection. Who knows but 
the Lord will do much good ? The strong desires 
and great efforts of people to hear the word, should 
quicken ministers to adventure themselves to break 
the bread of life, as they have invitation and oppor- 
tunities. There hath not been any trouble to me or 
the hearers for that day's work hitherto, though there 
have been troubles attending others for the like at- 
tempts in the same place." 

" Dec. 20. I heard there was to be preaching at 
Coley chapel, and after long debate what I should do, 
at last, I resolved to go and hear what doctrine is de- 
livered to my beloved people ; for I had heard an 
Antinomian was to preach. Being there, the church- 
warden came to me in a fury, before the minister had 
taken his text, and would have taken me out of the 
chapel, to which, for several reasons, I refused to con- 
sent. He charged the minister to forbear preaching 
to an excommunicated person. I replied, if he would 
not preach, I would. After a pause, he took his text, 
and preached, though, so far as I could judge, not 
much to edification. I stayed at home in the afternoon, 
where I had an abundant tide of the Spirit, more than 
ever I had experienced, (that I remember,) which car- 
ried me out in affectionate prayer for the church. 


Since this, I judge it my duty to spend the sabbath 
in my own house as well as I can, rather than endan- 
ger a disturbance in public. I may now say, as the 
Psalmist, ' I watch, and am as a sparrow, alone on the 
house-top.' I am become an alien at home, and may 
not so much as sit down amongst my old friends, nor 
set foot in the house of God. What have I done, thus 
to provoke the Lord, and thrust myself out of the 
house appointed for his name ? Surely, there is some 
undiscovered Achan in my heart, that has caused me 
to be thus troubled ; some Jonah has raised this tem- 
pest, and occasioned my being thrown out of the ship 
of the church. Through grace, I have not committed 
any fault worthy of such a censure from man ; yet, I 
cannot slightly pass it over and make nothing of it, 
but must own the hand of God, and accept the punish- 
ment of my sins, whatever the instruments design. 
How long will the Lord be angry with our prayers, 
cast us out of his presence, and deny us the enjoyment 
of public privileges ? O that God would cause his face 
to shine upon his sanctuary for his name's sake !" 

" About this time, I rose up early one Lord's day 
morning, and resolved to go to Penistone, to hear a 
friend of mine, who was to preach there that day. 
But being alone, I lost my way, and thinking it would 
be late before I could arrive there, I turned to Honley, 
to hear Mr. Drury,* but he did not preach that day. 
After some overtures made for my preaching there, 
but in vain, I went to Holmfirth, where vuiexpectedly, 
at noon, the preacher and several of the people invited 
me to preach that afternoon, which I did, and found 

* Mr. Drury, ejected from this place, was a native of Scotland, 
whither he returned some time after his ejectment ; but was con- 
tinually changing his place. He died at Edinburgh, in the reign 
of King William. He was much esteemed as a pious man, and 
as having a great gift in prayer. 


much enlargement in my work: though my oppo- 
nents have heard of it, they have not assayed to 
molest me. It may he, my missing the way may find 
a soul." 

" In the court at York there were strong prejudices 
against me. Some of my adversaries had informed, 
upon oath, that I was preaching still, and that when 
some persons came to disturb me, I beat them with my 
cane, which are palpable and groundless lies : my intel- 
ligence informed me, that there was a warrant in the 
hands of some justices, which the proctor saith, he 
saw, and desired me in prudence to avoid it. I there- 
fore went into Lancashire for a month, and after ten 
weeks' continuance at hom.e, heard no more of it. 
Besides my civil liberty, I have hitherto enjoyed spi- 
ritual privileges, though in private, yet with comfort. 
I have had the communion of saints, in a considerable 
company, at my house every week, day or night, since 
I have been debarred from public opportunities. This 
is the more remarkable, because the churchwarden 
and constable are very near neighbours to me, and the 
one is so malicious, that he hath been seen to watch 
the house himself, and hath been known to set others 
to watch." 

" Now, at last, a fatal blow is given to my liberty, 
for my restless adversaries have procured a writ 
(de excommunicato capiendo,) to apprehend me as 
an excommunicated man. The Lord providentially 
brought it on me, by an occasional meeting of the bai- 
liffs, who had a process to take me on May 3, 1664 ; 
yet they have been exceedingly civil and courteous to 
me, and were willing to dismiss me, so that I enjoy my 
full liberty still, beyond my expectation, only promising 
to be forth-coming when I am called for by the sheriff. 
I acknowledge the kindness of Dr. Maude as iustru- 


mental in procuring this reprieve ; the Lord reward 
him and others, for all their great labour of love in 
this behalf Though this writ hath been procured, 
and I was in suspense whether I must be confined in 
prison or not ; yet the providence of God hath not 
only kept me at liberty, but hath ordered me more 
public employment and usefulness since those fears, 
than for a long time before. Three whole Lord's days 
I have preached in parish churches to great congre- 
gations. May I not retort on my threatening oppo- 
nents, * Why boast ye yourselves in mischief, O mighty 
men ? the goodness of God endureth continually.' I 
have found it so, and can oppose God's goodness to 
men's vileness, nor can they be so bad as he is good. 
I was the first that was begun with in this county, 
yet many others have been in bonds while I have been 
at liberty. Shall I thence conclude, that I am more 
righteous than others ? God forbid ! rather the Lord 
Jesus sees my unfitness to suffer, and indulgeth my 
infirmity. O my soul, bless the Lord, who is thy help 
and shield, who hath delivered thee out of the hands 
of all thine enemies, who hath girded thee with 
strength, who hath prevented all thy fears, and hath 
been even better to thee than all thy hopes. No wea- 
pon formed against me hath yet prospered, and every 
tongue that hath risen up against me hath been con- 
demned : my God hath censured their censures, and 
condemned their damnatory sentences, so that hitherto 
their words have broken no bones, but vanished into 
air. The more that enemies have spoken against the 
servants of God, the more we have been able to speak 
for our God, according to Acts iv. 29- So it is, God 
opens when men shut. It is a miracle of mercies, that 
men lay not violent hands on those they account not 
fit to live in the land. God keeps us in our own 


houses, and amongst our dear relations and neigh- 
bours ; he alone preserves us." 

At this time, when at home on the Lord's day, three 
or four companies privately assembled at different parts 
of the day, when he preached and they heard as if 
every season were the last they should enjoy : but 
when he had opportunities, he preferred preaching in 
public places at a distance. " May 8th," he says, " I 
was called out of my bed before sun-rise, by a consider- 
able number of persons who came to hear the word of 
God. There came also another comjiany in the fore- 
noon, and still more in the afternoon : and we enjoyed 
the whole day in peace, with abundant spiritual en- 
largements. It was a delightful day to my soul, though 
23ainful to my body ; but having so fair a call and a 
full auditory, I laid out myself not knowing but it 
might be a parting exercise. I find that when Paul 
was ready to depart from Troas, he continued his 
speech till midnight : and I cannot spend myself in a 
better cause. Blessed be the Lord for his goodness ! I 
questionnot but the Lord will hear prayer, accept praises, 
and do our souls good by ovu* fears, tears, and troubles." 

"May 15th, going to Penistone to hear Mr. Swift,* 
who to this day enjoyeth his liberty, except three 
weeks' imprisonment, he importunately urged me to 
preach, which I was prevailed on to do. I was em- 
ployed both parts of the day, and though I found not 
such special assistance of the Spirit, as sometimes I 
have had and did expect, yet the auditory was much 
affected ; and who knows what good may be done, for 

* Mr. Swift was imprisoned three times for his nonconformity, 
after which he was prevailed on to take the Oxford oath, and read 
a few of the prayers, though he never complied with the requi- 
sitions of the Act of Uniformity. Thus he continued in this small 
vicai-age till his death, which happened Oct. 13, 1G89, in the 68th 
year of his age. 


it was a large assembly and many had come very far ? 
A gentleman in the parish sent to me at night, signify- 
ing that he had heard that I was in trouble, and entreat- 
ed me to lodge with him at his house as long as I 
pleased, and he questioned not but in the ordinary way 
of providence I might be safe there. I thanked him, 
but resolved to return to my family and commit myself 
to the Lord, who I hope will still watch over me as 
hitherto he hath wonderfully done." A few weeks 
after this, he preached at Mottram church at the re- 
quest of the churchwarden, and with the consent of the 
vicar, who, though a conformist, was present both 
parts of the day, and was so much pleased with his 
services as to request he would repeat his visit. " I 
bless the Lord," says Mr. H. " that he graciously 
helped me to deliver his truth with some measure of 
enlargement and without reflections, which seldom do 
any good, but often much harm." 

In those days of peculiar danger and alarm, Mr. 
Heywood was frequently engaged with his brethren in 
tribulation, at special seasons of fasting and prayer in 
private : they were the more earnest in addressing 
God, as all hope of relief from human authority was 
improbable. The length and devotional fervour of 
those services, condemn those who are at ease in 
Zion, in our times of gospel opportunities. The fol- 
lowing extract will probably excite the astonishment 
of some that read it ; but the recollection of the cir- 
cumstances in which Mr. H. was placed, will justify 
him from the charge of enthusiasm. " Tuesday, June 
7th," he says, " we had a private day for seeking the 
Lord in prayer. There was a considerable number of 
Christians in the room, which was my father Angler's 
study. I was put to engage in the duty first, and 
continued about three hours pouring out my soul be- 


fore the Lord, principally on behalf of his church. It 
was a very delightful day and a token for good. The 
Lord warmed my heart exceedingly, and the hearts of 
others, and will certainly return answers to all those 
affectionate breathings and importunate prayers." 

The spirit of violent persecution which prevailed 
about this time, and was cherished by the high church 
party against the Nonconformists, almost exceeds our 
credit, were not the fact substantiated by the most in- 
dubitable evidence. The following instances may be 
taken as specimens : " July 13th, 1664, being at Shib- 
den-Hall, to visit a friend there, I was desired to tarry 
dinner. They had invited some friends, and among the 
rest Dr. Hook, vicar of Halifax, who would not stay to 
dine, because, as he said, he was bound by his canons, 
not to eat with an excommunicated person : and though 
he would have gone away, yet I thought I would ra- 
ther quit the place than that he should lose his dinner, 
or be defiled, or his conscience be perplexed." " Ste- 
phen Ellis, our churchwarden, came to demand four 
shillings for my absence from church four sabbaths. 
My servant answered, that if I came, he would put 
me out of church. Yes, said he, and so I will too, for 
the law must be executed, hoth to keep him awmj, and 
punish his ahsence." 

This persecuting spirit was not confined to a few in- 
dividuals, or displayed only on a few solitary occasions, 
but prevailed among the members of the British parlia- 
ment of that day, and induced them to pass what has 
been called the " Conventicle Act." By this law it 
was enjoined: "That every jierson above sixteen years 
of age, present at any meeting, under pretence of any 
exercise of religion, in other manner than is the prac- 
tice of the church of England, where there are five 
persons more than the household, shall, for the first 


offence, by a justice of peace be recorded, and sent to 
jail three months, or pay £5 ; and for the second of- 
fence, six months, or pay £lO ; and for the third time, 
being convicted by a jury, shall be banished to some 
of the American plantations, except New England or 
Virginia, for seven years, or pay £100 ; and in case 
such person return, or make his escape, he is to he ad- 
judged a felon, and suffer death icithout henefit of 
clergy^ It was a great hardship attending this act, 
that it gave a justice the power to convict a person 
without jury ; for if the convicted person was inno- 
cent, there was no relief to be obtained, the justice be- 
ing judge and jury. This unreasonable and anti-scrip- 
tural act, commenced operation July 1st, 1664, and its 
effects were soon visible in a famine of God's word, 
crowded prisons, enormous fines, banished worthies, 
frequent litigations, hosts of spies, and multiplied per- 
juries. No benefit was derived from this act, except by 
hireling informers, who infested every part of the land, 
and fattened on the miseries of their best country- 

A human device so contrary to the spirit of the 
gospel and the law of heaven, could not extinguish the 
ardent zeal of Mr. Heywood, nor drive him from the 
path of duty : he was in labours more abundant. "We 
have had," he says, " every Lord's day that I have been 
at home, a considerable number with me to keep the 
sabbath, and hitherto we have been in safety, without 
disturbance. Yesterday, Aug. 21st, we had a most 
agreeable day. My manner is, to spend the time as 
we are wont to do in public ordinances, only we are 
longer in the duty of prayer, wherein I usually spend 
an hour in the morning, in confession and petition, and 
an hour in the afternoon, in the pleasant duty of thanks- 
giving, wherein the Lord hath wonderfully enlarged 


my heart far beyond my expectations. Blessed, for 
ever blessed, be his name." Some of these stolen op- 
portunities were rendered exceedingly refreshing by 
the presence of God, and on these occasions he would 
say, " Such is worth a prison : let me obey God's call, 
and do his will, and let his will be done upon me." 

Mr. H. was ready on all occasions to engage in his 
Master's work, particularly in public, though every 
time he exposed himself to the malice of his vigilant 
adversaries. "Sept. 6th," he records, "when I was 
preparing for an intended journey into Lancashire, 
there came a messenger to me, requesting I would 
preach at Penistone the Lord's day following; and be- 
cause opportunities of that nature are but rare, I 
waved my first intention, and embraced that motion. 
The same day having the advantage of solitariness in 
my house, I went into my chamber, and prostrated 
myself before the Lord, earnestly desiring of him, that 
if he called me to that public work, he would do some 
good by me : but in that duty I had not the assistance 
I desired and expected, and such as I have often en- 
joyed. On the Tuesday after, at Denton, I had ano- 
ther invitation to preach on the Lord's day, at Mot- 
tram : and though I had travelled that week, and had 
but little leisure for preparation, though I was even 
under some indisposition of body, I experienced abun- 
dant enlargement of soul, great liberty of speech, and 
assistance in the work. The congregation was extra- 
ordinarily great. Who knows whether shall prosper, 
this or the other ? However, I adore infinite wisdom 
and goodness in both." 

If Mr. Hey wood enjoyed his liberty, and embraced 
many opportunities of doing good, at a time when the 
terror of three excommunications hung over him, it 
was not because of inactivity or defective animosity in 


liis enemies, but because the special providence of God 
restrained their malice, and protected his faithful ser- 
vant. " Yesterday, Oct. 9th," he remarks, " N. W — 's 
man, and widow B — , watched under the gates in the 
forenoon, while I prayed and preached in my house, 
and uttered many bitter, threatening words, both to my 
servant and others, yet we were in quietness all the 
day : blessed be God. Since then, I hear there are 
several persons suborned to watch my house, to see 
who come to me on the Lord's day, and to give notice 
to Sir John Armitage, who purposeth to surprise us as 
a conventicle, according to the late act, and carry us 
to prison. A short time afterwards, early on the 
Lord's day morning, as I opened my gates, a man ran 
away down the field : he is servant to a chief adver- 
sary of mine. What his intention was, I know not, 
but through God's rich providence, we enjoyed a 
blessed sabbath, and had a greater company than 
usual, because on that day, there was no preaching at 
Coley chapel. Many of the neighbours spent the sab- 
bath with us to our abundant satisfaction, and without 
any disturbance : blessed be God." 

It had been a great addition to Mr. Heywood's trou- 
bles, that the place in which he had laboured for the 
good of souls, and from which he had been ejected, 
was frequently unsupplied, and though two persons 
had remained a short time as ministers at the chapel, 
it was still vacant. It was therefore with great plea- 
sure he records : " There is an honest minister come 
to Coley at last, one Mr. Hoole, a very late conformist : 
the first time he preached there was Oct. 23, 1664. 
He preacheth well and is a pious man, and therefore I 
am resolved not to draw any from the public ordi- 
nances, but encourage them to wait on God in them, 
and pray for his blessing on them, to the good of many 


souls. But I fear my opponents will be his enemies 
for following that which is good, though he do con^ 
form." Mr. H.'s people having the opportunity of' 
hearing the gospel at home, and his preaching at his 
house on the Lord's day being attended with much 
danger, he was the more willing to embrace opportuni- 
ties of preaching and hearing at distant places. His 
narrative therefore abounds with the relation of many 
sabbath-day journies about this time, among which are 
the following: "Because I could not peaceably go to my 
own chapel to hear Mr. Hoole, I went Nov. 5. to hear 
Mr. Crossley at Bramhope, who by the good provi- 
dence of God still continues in his public work without 
conforming. I heard him in the morning, but at noon 
Mr. Dinely, * the gentleman of the place, moved that 
I should preach in the afternoon. I told him I was 
willino", if Mr. Crossley was content, and if it might 
not prejudice the people. They unanimously desired 
it, and referred the consequences to God's providence. 
I considered it as a call from God, and ventured to 
preach. The Lord was graciously seen in giving me 
unwonted liberty of speech and spirit, both in prayer 
and preaching ; and affected the hearts of his people : 
blessed be God. — Again, I went to spend a sabbath at 
Bramhope, and heard a Mr. Ord, a north country mi- 
nister, who had lately been imprisoned at York for 
preaching in a church in that city, but was released at 
the end of three weeks, upon a flaw in the signijicahit. 
It was a precious sabbath to me. The day after we 
took the advantage of a public fast : a great congrega- 
tion came from all parts. The Lord helped me to 

* Bramhope-hall, the residence of this worthy gentleman, was 
a common asylum for poor nonconformist ministers during their 
sufferings. The worship of God was maintained in this place till 
the death of :Mr. Dineley, in 1689, in the 83rd year of his age. 


carry on the work of the day, after Mr. C. had made 
an expository beginning. The service continued from 
eleven till half-past three o'clock. Blessed, blessed be 
our gracious God for that precious and unexpected op- 

The dangers to which Mr. H. was constantly ex- 
posed by his repeated excommunications, and the war- 
rants that had been issued for his apprehension, made 
him desirous to use every lawful means to obtain ab- 
solution ; or if that could not be granted, to be able to 
attend public preaching without fear of disturbance. 
On this latter subject he says : " Because I have a 
great desire to wait on God in public ordinances, 
though it be but to hear the minister at Coley, I have 
therefore sent to a friend at York to consult with some 
proctor, whether I may not, according to the bishop's 
laws, go and hear a sermon in public, though I be ex- 
communicated, as they call it ? The answer I have 
received is this : ' Dr. Hitch, Dean of York, saith, that 
an excommunicated person is not allowed to be present 
at prayers or sermon ; yet it being usual for such to 
hear sermons without disturbance, he wonders that 
any churchwarden should be so ignorant or malicious 
as to hinder any from hearing the word. He said he 
would not deliver his judgment under his hand for 
£100.' I have, saith my informant, searched the 
canons, and consulted with several ministers about the 
case, and their opinion is, that there is no law pro- 
hibiting any person, either heathen or Christian, from 
hearing the word preached. This is the answer, which 
smells of Babel, and is strangely confused. It is not 
allowed for such a one to hear, and yet there is no law, 
canon, or statute prohibiting it : surely where there is 
no law, there is no transgression ; but this is like all 
the rest of their rules, they make laws as they list." 


In the beginning of the year 1665, lyir. H. visited 
his native place, and the people of the neighbourhood 
were very importunate to enjoy his services. He 
preached every night in the week, besides keeping a 
fast, and his usual work on the Lord's day ; " I was 
induced to it," he saith, " partly, because it is my na- 
tive place, where my relations are resident ; partly, 
because their public administrations are unprofitable 
and discouraging; partly, because I took this as a token 
for future good ; and likewise, because I knew not that 
I should ever appear amongst them again." Mr. Bes- 
wick, minister of Ratcliffe, near Bury, made bitter 
complaints to the justices, that Mr. H. came over ta 
Bolton jiarish, and preached and prayed among great 
numbers of people, which he called conventicles ; but 
the justices, wiser and more tolerant than he, put him 
off. Afterwards he went to a privy sessions at Bolton, 
and made a similar complaint ; but Mr. Hulton, of 
Hulton-park, a justice of the peace, told him he did 
not know what a conventicle was, and that what he 
had informed against was not one, and thus gave him 
a rebuke for his information. It had been well for 
England, and more consistent with her boasted hu- 
manity, if all justices in those perplexing times, had 
acted in the same manner. 

Early in the summer Mr. H. resolved to visit his 
friends in the south, but came not to the determination 
till he had fervently implored the divine direction and 
blessing. "After long deliberation," he says, "I de- 
termined on a journey into the south, and observed a 
private fast to beg God's leave and presence. He gave 
us a gracious token for good, and a satisfying return 
of prayer afterwards ; so that in about six weeks time, 
I despatched that journey and returned home in safety, 
having visited several friends at Cambridge, Dedham 


in Essex, London, Coventry, Lancashire, and else- 
where. Oh for a thankful heart !" Having experienced 
many mercies, and enjoyed much comfort in his journey, 
he set apart the 12th of July as a day of thanksgiving, 
on which occasion he was honoured with the company 
of several christian friends, and the presence of God. 

After his return he renewed his accustomed labours 
as he had opportunity. The first Lord's day he spent 
in his own house with a few of his beloved people, at 
which time, he says, *' I found extraordinary enlarge- 
ment in prayer and praise, but especially in wrestling 
with God for mercy on behalf of the nation, There 
were eleven or twelve besides my family ; and O what 
floods of tears were poured forth ! We were in safety, 
without fear, all day ; though I have since heard that 
the constable and churchwarden were met near my 
house ; but the Lord surprisingly turned them another 

About this time, Mr. H. was in constant danger of 
being apprehended, but was remarkably preserved from 
the malicious designs of men. Among other instances, 
he records the following: " Yesterday, Aug. 19th, the 
pursuivants took up several persons at or about Hali- 
fax, and are taking up others to-day, to carry them to 
York, before the Duke, on what account is not known. 
Several were afraid for me, but blessed be God, we 
have enjoyed this Lord's day peaceably and profitably, 
and with a considerable number of people. Sept. 17th, 
the constable and two men came to my house, while I 
was at prayer, and searched it, when it so happened,; 
that contrary to what was generally the case, there 
were not more than four persons besides the family. 
The rest of the day was spent in prayer and praise. 
Nov. 5th. While I was engaged at Penistone, conduct- 
ing the monthly fast at that place for the plague in. 

VOL. I. I 


London, notice was brought into the church, that some 
troopers were at the gates to apprehend me ; but being 
taken a back way to Water-hall, I escaped. — When 
preaching at Shadwell, near Leeds, for Mr. Hardcastle, 
at that time in prison for nonconformity, a bailiff from 
Leeds, having another man with him, looked in at the 
window and said, I have nothing to do with this man. 
He made great inquiries after the name of the preach- 
er, and desired several persons to step to the pulpit 
for information : but they all refused. Being told of 
this at the conclusion of service, I went on to the after- 
noon's work, before the congregation had dispersed. 
When singing was begun, the bailiffs went off, saying, 
let us leave them merry : so we enjoyed our liberty 
that day." 

From various circumstances already related, it ap- 
pears Mr. H. was a child of special providence : this 
opinion receives additional confirmation from the fol- 
lowing short narrative of an event, that transpired be- 
tween the time of his ejectment and the close of this 
period. " While I was musing, and pondering how to 
get my rent discharged, and had no way, at this time, 
but to borrow it, there came a dear friend to me, and 
brought me £5. which did furnish me with an over- 
plus besides my rent. It was a seasonable present, 
sent to me by a liberal hand ; yet I own God chiefly 
in it, who cares for me, as in this and several other ex- 
periences is evident. O what a sweet thing is the life 
of faith ! That is a perfumed gift, which thus comes 
from God as a token of love, after the actings of faith 
in prayer. How good is God to me ! I live nobly, 
and am so far from wanting, that I have all and 
abound ; and where supplies fail one way, God makes 
them up another. Many times I expect most where I 
am most disappointed, and help comes in from quar-». 


ters where I had least reason to look for any ; but this 
1 may say, ' The Lord is my shepherd ; I shall not 
want :' and hitherto God hath helped me." * 

* This narration corresponds in so many particulars with an 
anecdote in the " Life of O. Hey wood," by the late Dr. Fawcett, 
that reference is probably made to the same event, only this is 
Mr. Heywood's relation of the fact, and the other is the account 
handed down by tradition. Among the numerous private MSS. 
of Mr. H. still in preservation, and which have been carefully and 
minutely examined, no allusion is made to such an event, except in 
tlig above extract. Dr. Fawcett says : " The little stock of money 
was quite exhausted, the family provisions were entirely consumed, 
and Martha could lend no more assistance from the little savings of 
former days. Mr. H. still trusted that God would provide ; when 
he had nothing but the divine promise to live upon, he said, 

' When cruise and barrel both are dry, 
We still will trust in God iMost High.' 

When the children began to be impatient for want of food, Mr. 
H. called his servant, and said to her, ' JMartha, take a basket, and 
go to Halifax ; call upon Mr. N. the shopkeeper, in Northgate, and 
tell him, I desire him to lend me five shillings : if he will be kind 
enough to do it, buy us some cheese, some bread, and such other 
little things as you know we most want ; and be as expeditious as 
you can, for the poor children begin to be fretful for want of 
something to eat. Put on your hat and cloak, and the Lord give 
you good speed ; in the meantime, we will offer up our requests 
to him who feeds the young ravens when they cry, and who 
knows what we have need of before we ask him.' Martha ob- 
served her master's directions ; but when she came near the house 
where she was ordered to beg the loan of five shillings, through 
timidity and bashfulness, her heart failed her. She passed by the 
door again and again, without having courage to go in and tell her 
errand. At length, Mr. N. standing at his shop-door, and seeing 
Martha in the street, called her to him, and said, ' Are not you 
Mr. Heywood's servant?' When she had, with an anxious heart, 
answered in the affirmative, he added, ' I am glad I have this op- 
portunity of seeing you ; some friends at M — , have remitted to 
xaejive guineas for your master, and I was just thinking how I 
could contrive to send it.' Martha burst into tears, and, for some 
time, could not utter a syllable. The necessities of the family, 
their trust in Providence, the seasonableness of the supply, and a 


It was in this year, (156.5) that the plague broke out 
in London, which carried off above 100,000 persons. 
The clergy belonging to the London churches, mostly 
forsook their parishioners in this season of extremity ; 
but several of the ejected ministers, who had till now 
laboured only in private, influenced by a tender com- 
passion for the souls of their suffering fellow-men, oc- 
cupied the deserted pulpits, and hastened at every call 
to visit the pestilential chambers of the sick and dying, 
to administer the consolations of the gospel, or pluck 
the departing spirit as a brand out of the fire. They 
preached, and prayed, and exhorted with the zeal of 
martyrs, and the people listened to their ministry as in 
the near approach of eternity. The power of God was 
remarkably displayed in their preservation in the 
midst of deaths, and his grace was gloriously illustrat- 
ed in the success of their exertions. Yet while those 
holy men were thus employed, the parliament, assem- 
bled at Oxford, was preparing greater hardships for 
the Nonconformists, as will appear from the sequel. 

variety of other ideas breaking in upon her mind at once, quite 
overpowered her. At length, she told ]Mr. N. upon what errand she 
came, but that she had not courage to ask him to lend her poor 
master money. The tradesman could not but be affected with the 
story, and told INIartha to come to him when the like necessity 
should press upon them, at any future time. She made haste to 
procure the necessary povisions, and, with a heart lightened of its 
burden, ran home to tell the success of her journey." 


The Five-mile Act — Soliloquy — Mr. Heywood's Banishmenl from 
Home — His frequent Journeys, Labours, and Dangers — The 
Fire of London — Mr. Heyrvood' s second Marriage — Various Jour^ 
neys — Occasional preaching at Coley Chapel — Preservation and 
Labours continued — Sickness — Recovery, and renewed Labours 
— Severities increased — Reasons for preaching at his 0W7i House— 
Impriso?i7nejit at Leeds — The Co7iventicle Act revised and enlarged 
— Mr. Hey wood fined for preaching at Coley Chapel — The spoiU 
ing of his Goods — Reproach for the Truth — Hazardous Labotirs 
— Divine Enjoyments in Private — Observance of Bartholomew's 
Day — Self-examination and Covenant — Remarkable Providence. 

The Nonconformist ministers were driven from the 
places in which they had laboured, by the Act of Uni- 
formity, and they were prevented from exercising their 
ministry publicly, by the Conventicle Act ; but their 
distress was partially mitigated, by the kindness of 
their former hearers, by the pleasure they enjoyed in 
teaching them from house to house, and by their do- 
mestic comforts in dwelling with their own families. 
Such, however, was the spirit of persecution which 
then prevailed, that, because these excellent men would 
not violate their consciences by perjury, nor in their 
worship comply with the mandates of bigotted eccle- 
siastics, they were, by an English parliament, pro- 
nounced unworthy to partake of the common blessings 
of social life. While the plague was raging in the 
city of London, and the judgments of an offended 
God were threatening the nation, an act was passed to 
prevent Nonconformist ministers, except in passing on 

lis LIFE or THE llEV. O. HEY WOOD. 

the road, from coming within five miles of any parish^ 
town, or place wherein they had acted as ministers^ 
or within five miles of any city, town corporate, or 
borough, upon forfeiture for every such offence, of the 
sum of £40 ; one-third to the king, another to the 
poor, and the remaining third to the prosecutor. The 
only means by which the rigours of this act could be 
avoided, was by taking the following oath : " I, A. B, 
do swear, that it is not lawful, upon any pretence what- 
soever, to take arms against the king : and I do abhor 
the traitorous position, of taking arms by his authority 
against his person, or against those that are commis- 
sioned by him, in pursuance of such commission : and 
that / will not at any time endeavour any alteration of 
the government, either in church or state." The Non- 
conformist ministers were in general as loyal as most 
of his majesty's subjects, many of them had suffered in 
his cause, and they were willing to obey his authority 
in civil concerns ; but to swear they would not, at any 
time, endeavour any alteration in the government of 
the church, was to renounce their nonconformity. 
When this act came out, those ministers who had any 
private property, settled in some obscure village or 
market town, that was not a corporation ; whilst those 
who had nothing for their support but what they re- 
ceived from their people, were obliged to leave their 
wives and children, and wander from place to place, 
among those who were willing to entertain them, 
coming home occasionally in the dead of the night, to 
visit their families. The design of this act was to 
drive the ministers away from their kind neighbours, 
who pitied and relieved them, and thus by poverty, 
and pinching hunger force them to compliance ; but 
the scheme totally failed, for the cruelty of this severe 
law raided them up friends wherever tliey Avent. Their 


iVifficulties were truly great, but God mercifully pro- 
vided for them, so that scarcely any perished for want, 
and though they were often imprisoned for breaking 
this law, none were imprisoned for debt. 

Mr. Heywood, in a soliloquy on this act, thus ex- 
presses himself : " Another step the restless adversary 
hath taken, by God's permission, to disquiet poor, 
ejected ministers, by casting them out of their own 
houses, from their flocks and families, from cities and 
towns corporate. This act commences March 24, 
1666, a clear evidence, that Satan and his instruments 
are unwearied in seeking to wear out the saints of the 
Most High. But the enemy has overshot himself, for 
this act, above all other means, tendeth much to the 
furtherance of the gospel. It produced strange 
thoughts of heart, and strong workings of affection at 
the separation of nearest and dearest relations ; yet 
•even in this it hath done some good, as well as in 
many other respects. Instead of one house that we 
had to preach in, we have now at least a score. By 
travelling abroad our acquaintance is exceedingly en- 
larged, and so are our opportunities of doing good : 
the persecution of seedsmen is the dispersion of the 
seed, which much tends to the propagation of the gospel. 
Whereas, before this act, we were confined to our own 
houses ; we are now sent to many families with the 
word of life, and every honest man's house is our 
home. God hath not left us comfortless, but hath 
come to us and made us sweet and satisfying disco- 
veries of his power and love to us in the houses of our 
friends. We find, by delightful experience, that the 
Lord is every where by his wisdom, power, faithful- 
ness, and loving-kindness, and that it is as short a 
way to a throne of grace abroad, as at home : the om- 
nipotent arm of a merciful Father can reach us even 


at the ends of the earth. Blessed be God, men cannot 
banish God from us, nor us from him. The affliction 
is heavy on several of God's servants, and even on thee, 

my soul, who hast had thy share of wandering al- 
ready: but consider, thou hast wandered from thy 
God, and now he causeth thee to wander : a suitable 
punishment, wandering for wandering: though men 
be cruel, God is righteous. O my soul, couldst thou 
be content to enjoy a settled state when God's ordi- 
nances are in a great measure withdrawn, and the 
gospel seems to stand on the tip toe ? Yet consider, 
it is not so bad as it might have been. Thou hast 
thy liberty to walk abroad at large, not shut up in a 
close prison as many ; thou art not banished into a 
foreign land amongst a people of strange speech; thou 
art among thy relations and christian friends, and hast 
more opportunities among them than before: all which 
are advantages to health, estate, and spiritual graces. 
Hast thou not become more acquainted with the va- 
riety of christian states and experiences, and hath not 
this done thee good ? Surely goodness and mercy 
have followed me all my days, and in all places. I have 
found precious mercies in prohibited places, where 
God hath watched over me and been a wall of fire 
round about me : never have I experienced such free 
liberty and large companies in my own house, as since 

1 have been by law excluded from it. O what cannot 
God do ! * How unsearchable are his judgments, and 
his ways past finding out!' God telleth our wander- 
ings, and putteth all our tears into his bottle. My soul, 
think it not much to wander, since thy dear Saviour 
trod many a weary step for thee : he had not so much 
as a place where to lay his head, though Lord of the 
whole earth, and King of kings ! Labour to imitate 
thy master in going up and down doing good, and 


leave some savour of goodness in all places where Pro- 
vidence doth cast thee. Few have thy advantages, for 
God hath given thee credit, and inclined his people to 
desire thy company. O my soul, be faithful in thy 
work, and, it may be, God will make thee successful ; 
beware of self-conceit and ostentation, observe the calls 
of God, beg of him christian prudence, to direct thee 
in the disposal of thy journeys, follow the Lord in 
duty, and he will follow thee in mercy. Hitherto God 
hath secured and assisted thee in all thy ways, and he 
will guide thee by his counsel, and afterward bring 
thee to glory. There remaineth a rest for wandering 
pilgrims, a blessed rest on the bosom of Abraham, a 
house not made with hands, a city which cannot be 
shaken, and from which thou shalt never be banished. 
O blessed day ! O happy rest which remaineth for the 
people of God!" 

On the 24th of March, 1666, the day appointed for 
putting in force the Five-mile Act, Mr. Hey wood 
began his " Diary," from which many of the following 
extracts are selected, containing a minute account of 
his journeys in this interesting part of his life. " This 
is a great scattering day," he says, "hundreds of 
ministers being by act of parliament banished five 
miles from the places where they formerly preached, 
if they take not an oath which they generally refuse ; 
and this day I came out of Yorkshire to Denton, to 
live in exile. O the tears that have been shed for 
breaking up families, and separating husbands and 
wives, parents and children, pastors and people !" He 
now left his two little motherless sons in care of his 
faithful servant Martha, and set out on his pilgrimage, 
scarcely knowing whither he went. His first stage 
was to Halifax, where the day was spent in taking 
leave of- his friends and former hearers. On this oc- 


casion he says, " It melted our hearts, having been 
above fifteen years together, and there having been 
many endearments betwixt me and my people. The 
second day I came to Denton, it was the most tedious 
journey I have had that way, which I have gone many 
hundred times ; but scarcely ever with so sad a heart, 
and in so severe a storm of weather. On Wednesday, 
my father Angier and I travelled to Sir John Stanley's, 
of Auderley, where I, being called on to go to prayer 
in that large family, the first night we came, was 
tempted to study and speak handsome words from res- 
pect to the company ; but reflecting to whom I prayed, 
and that it was no trifling matter, I set myself to the 
exercise in serious earnestness, and God helped me to 
speak to him devoutly with respect to the state of their 
souls and the good of their family." Mr. Heywood 
and his father-in-law Angier, spent several days in 
various respectable families, in different parts of 
Cheshire and Lancashire, were entertained with the 
greatest hopitality, and embraced many opportunities 
of preaching where they visited. Having much leisure 
in this journey, Mr. H. completed his first publication, 
entitled, " Heart Treasure." 

Notwithstanding the kindness with which they were 
every where received and entertained, Mr. Angier ap- 
peared out of his element, and longed to return home ; 
indeed, he was partly compelled to return, being un- 
fitted for much travelling by age and growing in- 
firmities. He said to Mr. H. " Come, son, let us trust 
God and go home." They returned to Denton, and 
Mr. H. soon came to Yorkshire, when he thus wrote : 
*' After six weeks wandering abroad to visit friends, I 
am at last arrived at my own house. May 3rd, in the 
night. I find my family removed, (but I hope it is for 
the better,) to a more commodious house at Coley-halJ, 


without land, which as times are, may prove still very- 
much in my favour, with less danger, trouble, and 
hazard. Being left alone in my new house, I see God 
is to be found in all places ; for my soul hath had a 
precious season : blessed be God. Many came to see 
me, and I spent two Lord's days at home, with a con- 
siderable number of Christians, to my abundant com- 
fort. They were refreshing days and duties. I preached 
to my neighbours several times on the week days, and 
observed a solemn fast. May 15, with almost twenty 
in my house, and God was wonderfully with us. The 
morning after, by sunrise, I left home." 

May 21st. I went to Leeds, a prohibited place. 
At night, I preached at J. C — 's house, where we had 
a very great number to hear. The Lord protected us ; 
though a bailiff came to R. Hickson's house, where I 
slept, and therefore I chose to leave Leeds. On the 
Wednesday night, I went to Hunslet, where I preached 
to a full congregation, at J. Beck's house. The Lord 
made it a refreshing night to many souls, though our 
adversaries watched and gnashed their teeth, when 
they saw so many coming together. May 27th, spent 
the Lord's day at Penistone in public, without disturb- 
ance. There was a numerous congregation from all 
parts, and I had great liberty of speech in preaching 
and praying ; but not those meltings of heart I have 
sometimes enjoyed, nor was I so affected with the state 
of souls as my heart desires. On Friday, June 1st, I 
returned home in the night, without danger, and spent 
the Lord's day there. God helped me in my work, 
and preserved me and my company." 

The next day, Mr. H. set out on his third journey, 
but did not go far from home. On his return, June 
5th, about 10 o'clock at night, he was assaulted near 
his house by two men. " The one," he says, " was ill 


drunk ; and as they came, they ranted and roared, 
saying, ' where art thou, Heywood ? Come, and pay 
thy £40.' By the time they had got to the end of the 
barn, and not above two or three roods from the house, 
I met them ; one had fallen, and the other was lifting 
him up. My horse was frightened and would not go 
past ; at length having got him up, the man came to- 
wards me, and said, 'he M^ould see who I was ?' but 
the other held him off, and said, ' let him alone, come 
by, friend ;' so I went by. But what would they have 
done had they known who it was ? God held me from 
them, for I had not my own horse, and had on a grey 
coat, and did not speak, for they would have known 
my voice. Blessed be the keeper of Israel, who hath 
preserved my going out, and my coming in to this day." 
He might at this time with propriety have adopted 
most of the expressions of the Apostle Paul, when de- 
scribing his labours and sufferings in the cause of Christ. 
He was "in labours more abundant," and though 
mercifully preserved from the horrors of a prison, yet 
he was *' in deaths oft, in journeyings often, in perils 
of robbers, in perils by his own countrymen, in perils 
in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils among 
false brethren ; in weariness and painfulness, in watch- 
ings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in 
cold and nakedness." 

His diary shows how ready he was to expose him- 
self to danger for the good of souls : "June l6th," he 
says, " upon earnest solicitation, I went to Bramley, in 
the night, about seven miles : God graciously preserved 
me. I preached three times on the Lord's day, and was 
much refreshed ; the hearts of the people were evident- 
ly affected, and I hope some good was done. I visited 
friends by the way, and returned home on Monday 
night in srfety. The night after, I went into Lau- 


cashire, and kept the sabbath with a considerable num- 
ber in the house wherein I was born. On Monday, I 
again travelled with my honoured father into Cheshire. 
At night we lodged at Dunham, with my lord Dela- 
mere, where we were nobly treated ; yet I thought 
home and heaven were better than all this. I had af- 
fecting considerations of the excellency of grace beyond 
all this worldly pomp and splendour. Returned to 
Yorkshire, July 17th ; and afterwards went into Lan- 
cashire, and preached ^gain in the house wherein I 
was born; a great number flocked thither, so that 
there was not sufficient room for the people within 
doors. God made that (July 29th,) a blessed day to 
me. On the Monday night, at Bolton, Tuesday morn- 
ing, near Bolton, in the evening, at Little Lever, and 
on Wednesday, at Breightmit, I had opportunities of 
preaching to considerable numbers. Aug. 6th, in the 
night came to my house once more. The two Lord's 
days I was at home, I spent with much enlargement, 
and had above forty persons each day, when God so 
concealed us that we were scarcely suspected, nor did 
my enemies know I was at home." 

Being in constant danger, by residing near his late 
charge, he had serious thoughts of removing. " I had 
nearly determined to remove into Lancashire," he ob- 
serves, " that I might be quietly at home, and have the 
benefit of a good schoolmaster for my sons ; but my 
kind neighbours and hearers will not suffer it, they have 
prevailed on me to stay, and prevented my removal, 
which may be for my comfort in the issue. I preach in 
my own house three times every week, besides some 
work abroad. We have had more solemn and numer- 
ous meetings than formerly, almost 100 persons at 
once. We have a more private place than before. 


where I can sing and speak as loud as I please, with- 
out fear of being overheard. I remained at home two 
Lord's days, with much enjoyment and safety : blessed 
be my God. I went according to appointment to 
Penistone, Nov. 3rd, 1666. After this journey I stayed 
at home two Lord's days, very comfortably and quietly, 
the Lord watching over me ; I had considerable num- 
bers both on the Lord's days and week days, and 
preached to those who came openly in the day time. 
I hear it was rumoured abroad that there are great 
meetings at Coley-hall, and a person told our neigh- 
bours they were resolved to catch me ; yet hitherto 
God hath preserved and prevented me." He afterwards 
went abroad, and returned home, Dec. 19th. " Then," 
he says, " I stayed at home three Lord's days, followed 
my studies, preached thrice a week, had a large audi- 
tory, kept a fast, and God was very gracious to me all 
the time I was at home. Having gone again into 
Lancashire, I found that there are four persons under 
convictions through my ministry, of whom I never 
had heard before. When I came home, I found my 
son John very ill of the small pox. He speaks far be- 
yond his age, and though in pain, he saith, his hea- 
venly Father takes care of him. I continued at home 
two Lord's days, and was helpful to my family and 
many others, who flocked to my house, as doves to 
their windows, to the nimiber of a hundred at a time, 
at least ; God preserving us, who in his own due time 
did also graciously restore my son John, so that I kept 
a day of thanksgiving, and had several friends. It 
was a good day." 

Scarcely had the dreadful effects of the plague ter- 
minated in London, and the persons who had fled, re- 
turned to their habitations, when the city was visited 


by another awful scourge — the fire of London. This 
terrible conflagration began about midnight, Sept. 2nd, 
not far from the tower of London. Three or four days 
it continued its ravages, which no power of man could 
check, and at last it suddenly ceased, as if by a com- 
mand from heaven. It consumed eighty ninp churches, 
most of the city gates, the Guildhall, many public 
structures, hopitals, schools, libraries, a vast number, 
of stately edifices, thirteen thousand two hundred 
dwelling houses, and four hundred streets. The ruins 
of the city extended over four hundred and thirty six 
acres. " It was a sight," says Mr. Baxter, " that 
might have given any man a lively sense of the vanity 
of this world, and all the wealth and glory of it, and 
of the future conflagration of the world ; to see the 
flames mount up towards heaven, and proce^ed so furi- 
ously without restraint ; to see the streets filled with 
people astonished, who had scarce sense left them to 
lament their own calamity ; to see the fields filled with 
heaps of goods ; to see sumptuous buildings, curious 
rooms, costly furniture, and household stuff", yea, ware- 
houses, and furnished shops, and libraries, &c. all on a 
flame, and none durst come near to take any thing ; 
to see the king and nobles ride about the streets, be- 
holding all these desolations, and none able to afford 
the least relief; to see the air, as far as could be beheld, 
so filled with the smoke, that the sun shone through 
it with a colour like blood, yea, even when he was 
setting, it so appeared to them that dwelt in the west 
side of the city. But the most doleful sight was after- 
wards, to see what a ruinous confused place the city 
was, by chimneys and steeples only standing in the 
midst of cellars and heaps of rubbish, so that it was 
hard to know where the streets had been, and it was 


dangerous for a long time to pass through the ruins, 
because of vaults with fire in them. No man that 
seeth not such a thing, can have a right apprehension 
of the clreadfulness of it." * 

Most of the former part of the year 1667, Mr. H. 
spent in occasional journeys to preach the gospel of the 
grace of God to perishing sinners, in various parts of 
Yorkshire, Lancashire, and Cheshire. 

" May 23rd," he says, " I took a journey with my 
family, that is, my children and servant-maid, into 
Lancashire. The Wednesday after, I united with my 
father, Angier, at Denton, on a public day of thanks- 
giving, being the anniversary of the king's return ; 
and it was a delightful day. June 10th, I came home 
again with my family to Coley-hall. June 19th, upon a 
special call, I travelled to Sheffield, to keep a fast at Mr. 
Burbeck's house. I preached and went to prayer, but 
found not my wonted enlargement and assistance ; as 
to personal matters, I was in some measure helped, 
but as it respected public concernments, I was much 
straitened. It was a solemn day, and there were ten 
ministers present ; good old Mr. Wales f concluded. 

* Narrative of ]Mr. Baxter's Life and Times, by Sylvester, 
Part III. page ly. 

+ IMr. Wales was a native of Idle, in Yorkshire, and when he 
had finished his studies, settled at Pudsey, a small chapelry in the 
same parish. His labours at this place were very great, and 
though his ministry was not blessed to his own people as he de- 
sired and others expected, yet he was made exceedingly useful 
to strangers who came to hear him, and in neighbouring places 
where he frequently preached. He had many lucrative offers 
from other places, but nothing could prevail with him to leave 
his people, for whose spiritual welfare he was exti'emely solicitous, 
till he was driven from them by the Bartholomew Act, after having 
faithfully served them fifty-five yeai's. He died at Leeds, May 
11, 1669, above eighty years of age. His motto was, " Less than 
the least of all saints." 


There was also an excellent minister, a Mr. Sylvester,* 
of Mansfield, whom the Lord did very wonderfully 
carry out in the duty of prayer. Blessed be God for 
that day." 

Mr. Hey wood had remained in a state of widowhood 
above six years ; but having formed a connexion with 
Miss Abigail Crompton, of Breightmet, near Bolton, 
not far from his own native place, they were married 
by Mr. Hyde, at Salford chapel, June 37th, 1667- On 
this event, he thus v/rites : " In this wandering state, 
God hath added another mercy to what he had pre- 
viously granted — for he hath found me out a suitable 
partner. Our union was brought about through many 
interruptions, and the hand of God was evidently and 
eminently seen in the affair. 

This union, under the circumstances in which it took 
place, was a convincing evidence of their mutual affec- 
tion, and of their strong confidence in God. They 
were happily adapted for each other in reference to 
age, disposition, and religion, Mrs. H. proved what 
her husband expected — a prudent, faithful, and affec- 
tionate wife to him, and a tender mother to his sons.f 
Mr. Heywood remained about six weeks in Lancashire 
among his own and his wife's relatives, and, " July 

* Mr. Sylvester was ejected from Gunnerly, in Lincolnshire, 
and became domestic chaplain to John White, Esq. of IMansfield. 
He went to London after the great fire in 16G6, and was intro- 
duced to the celebrated Richard Baxter, who entertained for him 
the highest possible esteem. They preached together in the 
Charter-house Yard with much harmony : and when Mr. Baxter 
died, he left him his IManuscripts, some of which he edited. He 
died at the age of seventy- one, on the Lord's day evening, Jan. 25, 
I7O8. See Wilson's History of Dissenting Churches, vol. ii. 
pages 108—111. 

t She survived Mr. Heywood five years, and died at North- 
owram, June 12, 1707, in the 'JGth year of her age, leaving be- 
hind her an excellent character for hospitality and religion. 

VOL. I. K 

130 LIFE OF THE llKV. O. HEYW007). 

25th," he says, " I brought my wife into Yorkshire, to 
Coley-hal]. Some friends went along with us to Middle- 
ton, and others met us at Littleborougli : but I could 
not suffer many to go, because of my circumstances. 
We arrived in safety, and found all well. I preached 
in my own house on the Lord's day, had a considerable 
congregation, and God assisted and protected." 

" After we had been a fortnight at Coley-hall, I took 
a journey with my wife, and came back August I6tb. 
I went from home again August 23rd, and having 
preached nine times in seven days, returned. Blessed 
be God for work, and help, and hopes of a reward in 
due time. Sept. 19th, set forward on ray journey to- 
wards Lancashire, where I preached with Mr. Pendle- 
bury,* at Cockey chapel. Oct. 24th, we returned to 
Coley-hall, where we found my son John very ill of 
the measles, so that that very daj% neighbours were 
called in to see him die ; but God restored him. Eli- 

* I\Ir. Pendlebury, though not so generally known as IMr. Hay- 
wood, was a most excellent man and useful preacher. He was a 
native of the parish of Bury, Lancashire. After having attended the 
grammar school, at Bury, he went to Christ's College, Cambridge, 
and when he had taken his degree of jM.A. he returned home, and 
preached for twelve months at Horwich chapel, in Dean parish. 
In 1651, he removed to Holcomb, in his native parish, whence he 
was ejected by the Bartholomew Act. He continued preaching 
amongst his own people, and in neighbouring places, as he had 
opportunities, and was mercifully preserved from many of those 
outward sufferings which some of his brethren experienced for con- 
science and truth's sake. He laboured amongst his beloved people 
about forty-four years, and died in peace, June 18th, ] 695. His 
memory is still revered in that neighbourhood. His works are : 
An Exposition of the Assembly's Catechism ; A Treatise on Tran- 
substantiation ; A Treatise on the Sacrifice of the ]Mass ; The 
Barren Fig-Tree ; Invisible Realities ; the Books Opened. A 
few of his Sermons, copied from MSS. still in preservation, toge- 
ther with an account of his Life, may be seen in the " Select 
Nonconformists' Remains." 


ezer had also passed through that disease in our ab- 
sence, and Martha, our maid had been near death; 
but blessed be our God, who hath not made a breach 
upon us, nor laid them all under sickness at once, and 
hath now wonderfully raised them. O for a thankful 
heart ! Friday week, after our return, we observed a 
solemn day of thanksgiving for the recovery of my 
family, wherein God graciously assisted such as helped 
me on that occasion." 

Mr. Heywood sometimes occupied his old pulpit, 
during Mr. Hoole's ministry, at Coley chapel, when he 
was supplying elsewhere and had left the place vacant. 
"Jan. 5th, 1668," Mr. Heywood says, " I preached at 
Coley chapel, in public, Mr. Hoole having given notice 
the Lord's day before that he should be absent ; and I 
took the advantage of the vacancy. We concluded on 
it only the evening before, and the morning was so ex- 
ceedingly windy, that few could hear the bell ; but in 
the afternoon, there was a very great assembly. The 
Lord graciously assisted, and it was a good day : as 
for the effects of it, the will of the Lord be done." — 
*' July 4th, (1669) I had resolved to preach at home; 
but Coley being destitute, they opened the doors and 
rung the bell, where I preached all day without inter- 
ruption. There was a numerous congregation, though 
I did not know of preaching till after eight o'clock that 
morning. Blessed be God for this liberty. Sept. 19th, 
this Lord's day again, in the absence of Mr. Hoole, I 
preached at Coley chapel. O what a good day it was, 
and what a sudden congregation was collected ! We 
had great peace, notwithstanding many threatenings 
and fears." 

" Jan. 24th, 1668, 1 went, according to appointment, 
towards Bramley, to preach there on the Lord's day ; 
but E. H. came to my house to prevenl me, because 

K 2 


Mr. Hardcastle* had been taken at a meeting at Leeds 
the Tuesday night before, and they were afraid of 
danger. Providence so ordered it that I had set off, 
and we missed each other. He found me at Pudsey, 
and we resolved to keep to our purpose. I lodged at 
Mr. Sales's-f that night, and on Saturday went to 
Bramley. Preached there on the Lord's day publicly, 
where was a numerous and crowded congregation. 
We had peace all the day, and it was a pleasant day. 
On Monday I went to Holbeck, and preached there 
that night at E. Wildman's house, and had a great 
auditory, I purposed going to Leeds, but a friend 
sent me a letter, to inform me a constable and others 
were watching for me there ; this diverted my course 
to Beeston, then to Morley, where I lodged at Mr. 
Dawson's house, and preached to a large company 
which had been quickly assembled. Feb. 5. I jour- 
neyed to Wakefield, to visit Mr. Hardcastle in the 
House of Correction, sent there for holding a con- 
venticle. The day after I dined with him in his de- 
grading prison, and we had much conversation toge- 
ther. The two following Lord's days I preached in 
my house, but it could not contain the number of 
hearers that attended, because there was no preaching 

* ]Mr. Hardcastle was ejected from Bramham, in Yorkshire. 
He was a man of good abilities and a bold spirit, fearing no dan- 
ger; but of great moderation and Catholicism. He frequently 
suffered imprisonment for his Nonconformity in various parts of 
the kingdom. He became the pastor of a Baptist church at 
Bristol, and died there in I6'j9. See Nonconformist's IMemorial, 
vol. iii. p. 426 and 526. 

t ]\Ir. Sales was born at Pudsey, he had exercised his ministry 
at Lincoln, Thornton chapel, and Leeds. After his ejectment, 
he lived at his native place, and was a great comfort to old Mr. 
Wales, the minister of the place. He preached much in the 
neighbourhood, till disabled by a lingering disease. He died, 
April 21st, 1679. 


at the chapel. Both afternoons we were in the hall,* 
which was filled with hundreds of people. I was 
much affected to see so many of my old hearers in a 
private place. Blessed be God for these precious sea- 
sons. I preached at home on the day called Easter 
Sunday, God helped graciously. Though the consta- 
ble hath a warrant to search my house for a conven- 
ticle, yet he came not. I spent the next Lord's day 
at J. Brooksbank's, being persuaded to it, because of a 
proclamation the day before at Halifax against con- 
venticles ; but at four o'clock in the afternoon, I 
preached at home, and had a full auditory." 

" April 12th. They having no minister, I preached 
at Cockey chapel. There was a numerous congre- 
gation, and God granted us liberty and peace, though 
the High Sheriff and his father-in-law, Dr. Bridge- 
man, Dean of Chester, were not far off, and the trum- 
peter came at noon to an alehouse near the chapel. 
Blessed be God ! The Lord's day after, I preached 
publicly again at Cockey in the afternoon, though a 
conformist preached in the morning : but he was 
willing I should share with him in the work. At 
night, I preached at J. Pilkington's." 

During his many wanderings and frequent labours, 
Mr. Hey wood enjoyed a state of good bodily health ; 
but on his return home from this journey, he was 
threatened with a severe fit of illness, which the Lord 
mercifully abated and speedily removed. " Returning 
from Lancashire," he says in a soliloquy, " April 30th, 
the Lord visited me with a sore sickness, which began 
as if it would terminate in a violent fever ; but in about 
five days, he blessed the use of means for the recovery 
of this poor frail body. Health itself is a rich blessing; 
what would many give for the possession of this jewel ? 
* He now lived in part of Coley-hall, 


Other outward comforts cannot compensate for the 
want of it. Many are languishing with pining sick- 
ness or tormenting pain, so that from morning to night 
God is bringing them to an end. But thy God, O my 
soul, hath cased thee in a healthful body, so that thou 
mayest follow thy work. Except a little head ache, 
this frame hath had no sickness these fourteen years. 
Blessed be my God, who causeth the voice of joy and 
health in the habitation of his unworthy servant ; and 
now w^hen a sickness must needs come, there have been 
choice ingredients mixed with it. God brought me 
home ; why was I not seized when abroad ? I was no 
Lord's day out of employment, and had many friends 
to contribute their best assistance ; but above all, the 
Lord was ready to save me. O my soul, the Lord 
hath dealt gently with thee ; not because thou wast 
better than others, but he saw thou couldst not so well 
endure a tedious affliction. O w^hat a good God do 
we serve ! He doth not chasten us beyond our strength, 
but suits the burden to the back ; .in the midst of judg- 
ment he remembers mercy. ' As a father pitieth his 
children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him.' This 
God whom we serve secures us from a thousand deaths 
and dangers, bestows upon us many mercies, and is a 
present help in time of trouble. He dealeth not so 
graciously with all men, nor so gently with all his 
people as with me. And now, my soul, since God hath 
placed thee under the law of kindness, do thou study 
and practise the law of thankfulness ; thou hast reaped 
the fruits of God's mercy, let him reap the fruits of thy 
duty. Give thy body to God, who hath redeemed it 
by his Son's blood, and hath now again redeemed it 
by his powerful hand. Let the strength thou hast re- 
ceived be laid out to edify the church. The last fever 
thou hadst, God raised thee up to do him considerable 


service in converting souls. O that it may be so now ! 
May this recovery be a sign that I shall go up to the 
house of the Lord ! We kept a day of thanksgiving in 
private ; but when shall we sing songs to the stringed 
instruments in the house of the Lord ? O that such a 
blessed day might come. What a sweet revival would 
it be, even as life from the dead ! Then would my life 
be a life indeed ! What is my life worth but to glori- 
fy my God, and further his work in the world ? May 
I not do something towards promoting these great ends 
in ray present condition ? Such as improve not small 
talents will not improve larger opportunities of serving 
God. O my soul, engage in thy work more earnestly, 
and do something notable for him who hath dealt so 
graciously with thee." ^ 

Having been favoured with restoring mercies, we 
find him diligently employed in his Master's work, not- 
withstanding the difficulties attending it in those times. 
" May 22nd," he says, " we went to Bramhope, to visit 
an afflicted gentlewoman there, my lord Fairfax's sis- 
ter. From thence we went to W. Thompson's, near 
Headingley, where I was to preach, and there we met 
with a remarkable providence. One Mr. Morrice, a 
constable, observing many people go, went to Mr. 
Wade, a justice of the peace, who refused to go with 
him ; but he prevailed with Mr. Foxcroft, another 
justice and alderman of Leeds, who came and brought 
other two men with them. They knocked at the door 
as we were concluding, which being perceived, I was 
conveyed by a private way into the barn ; the four 
men went in, and the multitude of people rushed out 
and went away. Those that stayed were pressed to 
give in their names, which was refused, and after the 
men had stayed about an hour they went away. They 

136 Liri: or the kev. o. heywood. 

made a slight search, but I was gone out by a back 
way to S. Ellison's, near Bramley, where we remained 
till Wednesday. Aug. 8th, my wife and I went to 
Pudsey, according to my promise, but we were in- 
formed that a bailiff of Morley had been with C. Smith, 
and they liad consulted together. It was suspected 
they would disturb us and apprehend me, and I made 
full account of it ; but God held them off, so that we 
enjoyed a very agreeable and quiet sabbath. Old Mr. 
Wales was providentially there, though sent for that 
day to his dying wife. There was a multitude of 
people from all parts. The gentleman of the place, 
Mr. Wilner, invited me to preach, and entertained me. 
I returned safely home, blessed be my God." 

Mr. Heywood continued actively employed the re- 
mainder of this year, 1669, and experienced a continu- 
ance of the divine protection. March 28th, I preached 
at Hunslet chapel, where there was a numerous con- 
gregation, both within doors and without, such a multi- 
tude I have seldom seen. God cleared my way regu- 
larly for preaching there, though another person was 
designed for that day. He protected me graciously, 
assisted me in my work, and made it a comfortable 
day, blessed be God. June 26th, I preached at Morley. 
When I was in the pulpit singing a psalm, in comes 
Mr. Broadhead, vicar of Batley, to the clerk, and bade 
him tell Mr. H. to come out and let him have his own 
pulpit, and then hasted away. He left his gown at a 
house, took horse and went to Batley, and told justice 
Copley what a multitude of people there was at Morley 
hearing a Nonconformist ; he took no notice, but let 
us alone, and so through God's mercy we enjoyed the 
day quietly ; and it was a good day, blessed be God. 
The Lord's day after, Mr. Copley took Mr. Hancock 


at Alvertliorpe, near Wakefield, and hath sent him 
with two more, prisoners to York Castle, this adds to 
the mercy, that I escaped their hands." 

Government perceiving that the conventicle act was 
much evaded, a proclamation was issued to enforce the 
laws against the Nonconformists, and the judges in 
their circuits gave a strict charge to the juries to the 
same purpose. " Methinks," says Mr. H. " God and 
man are close at work. The whole creation seems to 
fight against a rebellious kingdom, and yet men are 
maintaining a desperate combat against the Lord of 
hosts. God hath sent lately a terrible motion of the 
earth, July 7th, and a powerful wind, July 25th, which 
hath done much injury to the corn ; yet a proclama- 
tion was sent forth July l6th, against the Nonconfor- 
mist private meetings, and a strict charge was given 
against us by the judges at the Assizes. Shall the 
heavens rend with tliunder, the earth tremble, and 
God's judgments threaten, and my poor soul not be af- 
fected ? O heart ! more prodigious than all these pro- 
digies ! O what a wretched heart have I ! Is not 
God coming against us like an armed man ? Lord, 
what wilt thou do with England ? Hath not the de- 
stroying angel of the plague done his errand effectu- 
ally ? Hath not the sword eaten flesh and drunk 
blood till it is ahnost glutted ? Did not the fire of 
God's vengeance find plenty of fuel in London's streets? 
Surely God hath been very angry, yet we may justly 
fear that these are only drops before the shower, the 
beginning of sorrow, and prologues of ruin. The Lord 
in his infinite mercy prevent the dreadful day of 
England's downfall ! Methinks the Lord makes sad 
approaches towards us. The heavens grow black over 
our heads, the earth trembles under our feet, the air is 
infested with astonishing tempests. We have had a 


famine of spiritual food, but that hath not been regard- 
ed, yea, men have rejoiced that the earth-tormenting 
prophets have been silenced ; but vt^hat the Lord doth 
mean by this earthquake himself only knows. It is fit 
language for earthly men, who make this earth their 
heaven. Ah Lord I when shall men's hearts quake? 
O that sin might be shaken away ! But profaneness 
abounds beyond measure, and men are striving which 
shall be at hell first. It is doubtful whether God's 
strange work, or men's horrid impieties shall be the 
greater prodigy ! Surely our sins are almost ripe, and 
and the sickle is at hand to cut down this sinful na- 
tion. Lord, prevent it by disposing us to a true and 
timely repentance, that England may live in thy sight. 
Are there such sins in our land as the Lord will not 
pardon ? Is there no balm in Gilead for a wounded, 
dying kingdom? It is true, our iniquities testify 
against us, but do it for thy name's sake, O Lord. 
What a mercy would it be, to see burning and shining 
lights in our candlesticks, converting work revived, 
believers united in heart and judgment, discipline estab- 
lished, men's inventions abolished, profaneness punish- 
ed, holiness promoted, and in all these, God glorified, 
souls edified, the kingdom of Christ advanced here in 
grace, and the kingdom of glory hastened !" 

Mr. H. was fully satisfied respecting the propriety 
of his conduct in prosecuting his ministerial work, 
though it was in opposition to the laws and proclama- 
tions of the civil authorities. His determination was 
not the hasty result of a momentary impulse, but of 
deliberate investigation relative to the path of duty, 
as appears from the following paper, dated Nov. 23rd, 


" Reasons why I keep at home and preach on 
Lord's days, though not constantly. Not that I despise 


the public ordinances, or cannot hear the sermons of 
conformists ; but, 

" 1. Because God hath given me a call to preach ; 
and in my ordination I solemnly promised before many 
witnesses to continue in my duty, notwithstanding all 
trouble and persecution. Now, I dare not play fast 
and loose with God and my conscience ; and if men 
cast me out, I ought to do my work more privately, 
though I would study to do it as prudently as the Lord 
enables me. — 2. Because I had a clear call to preach 
at Coley ; indeed God spake to me with an imperious 
voice when he sent me hither, for with my good will I 
would not have come, and he has continued me here 
almost twenty years, hath blessed my poor labours 
here, and created such a special relation between me 
and many of the people as no power of man can dis- 
solve. — 3. Because there are some who cannot be satis- 
fied to hear in public ; though I have used several 
means for their satisfaction, yet they will spend their 
time in private, and are in danger of mispending time 
or being seduced to ways of error, since Satan and his 
instruments are busy to draw off unstable souls from 
the good ways of God. — 4. Because the spiritual court 
(as they call it) did excommunicate me, after which 
Dr. Hook sent to me to desire me to forbear coming to 
church, and N. Whiteley would have put me out of 
Coley chapel ; after this, I judged God called me to 
improve my time in private, which I had no thoughts 
of, till I was persecuted and driven out by men's vio- 
lence, — 5. Because God hath exceedingly satisfied, 
quickened, and assisted my spirit in private. Several 
years togther I have spent the sabbath with about ten, 
or twelve, or more persons ; and O what a time of love 
hath it been ! I never met with so much of God's pre- 
sence in all my life ; many a time I have thanked God 


for the occasion of withdrawment, for he did me good 
against my will. — 6. Because God hath made use of 
me to do good to others. He hath helped me by this 
means to lay out my poor talent for the good of souls, 
and hath not altogether withdrawn his blessing from 
my endeavours ; and if I be instrumental in gaining 
one soul to God, I have part of my reward : this is my 
main study and design, though dead, to make souls 
live. — 7. Because there is great need of all God's har- 
vest-men to be at work, for the harvest is great and 
the labourers are few. I say not but there may be 
honest preaching of sound truths in some public places, 
though in too many we find mere quibbling, great 
deadness, little good done, and profaneness much 
abounds ; God calls all that can, to put out a helping 
hand in this great decay of religion. — 8. Because God 
hath smiled upon us in his gracious providence. Hi- 
therto I have not been imprisoned, nor questioned; all 
designs against my liberty have proved abortive ; no 
weapon against me hath prospered. Some who have 
done little have been more molested, but God hath se- 
cured me. This, in addition to former arguments, is 
an encouraging one." 

The proclamation of government and charges of the 
judges had partly the desired eifect of renewing the 
spirit of persecution against the Nonconformists, and 
Mr. Hey wood soon felt the consequences. March 14, 
1670, he was apprehended at Leeds at a private meet- 
ing and carried before the mayor, who treated him 
roughly, and ordered him to be confined in a dungeon 
called Capon-hall. He asked him if he had not been 
in their hands before. Mr. H. replied, " Your wor- 
ship may be mistaken as to my person ; I am no mover 
of sedition ; in political concerns, I do not interfere ; all 
I seek is to bring sinners to repentance, and thus pro- 


mote the spiritual and eternal welfare of my fellow 
creatures. I was never imprisoned but once, and that 
was for the king, in the attempt made in his favour by- 
Sir George Booth." By the mediation of some of the 
respectable inhabitants of the town, he was set at li- 
berty the next day. The following are his reflections 
on this circumstance : " God hath been admired in my 
liberty in his work and worship ; but, lest I should 
presume, he hath once given me over into the hands of 
men. I was committed by the mayor of Leeds to the 
common prison, where I lodged all night and the day 
after, the day forty years on which I was baptized. 
By the interposition of some friends I was released, 
though about fifty persons who were there, were fined 
five shillings each, at the sessions. Reflect, O my soul, 
on this critical part of thy life. What were thy thoughts 
in that imprisoned state, and what useful meditations 
canst thou frame thereon? Though the place was 
barren, yet it is a fruitful subject ; and were thy heart 
right thou mightest find it enlarged amidst thoughts 
on a prison. O my soul, remember the affliction and 
the misery, the wormwood and the gall, that thou 
mayest be humbled by repentance, and raised in thank- 
fulness and new obedience. God was to be seen in 
that business. It was he that led me into trouble, and 
he alone that brought me out, whoever were the in- 
struments. How secure and carnally confident were 
we ! Who ever expected a surprise ? When the oflScers 
were in the house, we could scarcely believe our own 
eyes ! We had enjoyed a long day of liberty, dreamed 
of impunity, and thought none durst meddle with us. 
Lord, when things smile most, make my heart most 
jealous ; and when all looks black, raise within me 
some glimmerings of hope ; let me be neither fearless 
in the best, nor hopeless in the worst estate. I was 


taken and put into another's custody when I thought 
least of it, and set at liberty suddenly and unexpectedly; 
God was good in both. O my soul, learn God's mind 
in all this. Did constables lead thee away in the night 
with lanterns? So they did thy dear Saviour, who 
was a prisoner, and endured worse things for thee. 
Did the magistrate give thee sharp reviling words ? 
Yet not such bitter language as was given to Christ. 
Did they lead thee to be imprisoned? He was led 
away to be crucified. O how small a matter is this to 
suffer for such a Saviour ! How many of God's ser- 
vants have suffered much more, and few that have 
been imprisoned have come off upon such easy terms. 
God put me into the fire and quickly caught me out. 
Lord, now I am at liberty, let me be thy servant, cast 
down my vain imaginations, knock off the bolts of sin 
that I may work for thee; take off the fetters of worldly 
entanglements, that I may walk to thy glory ; open to 
me the iron gates of difficulties, that I may go with 
freedom among thy saints to praise thy name. Lord, 
let my release be a presage of a general jubilee to thy 
silenced ministers, and oppressed people. God execut- 
eth judgments for the oppressed ; he looseth the pri- 
soners, and raiseth up them that are bowed down. It is 
as easy for God to take off the restraints from the Non- 
conformist ministry, as to release one from imprison- 
ment. Surely the hand of my God hath been upon 
me for good. It was his work to moderate the officers 
in the surprisal, and soften the jailor's heart towards 
me in my confinement. He sent me many loving visitors, 
concealed the worst from my affectionate wife, in- 
clined the hearts of the chief people in the town to in- 
tercede for me, bowed the mayor's heart to accept their 
entreaty and treated me with respect, prevented snares 
in my release, and brought me off with honour. It 


was the Lord's doing, and is marvellous in our eyes ; 
yea, in the eyes of very many. Lord, affect my heart 
with these strange providences, and produce the like 
deliverance for thy church. Thou showest us in this, 
what thou canst do in raising up instruments, chang- 
ing men's minds, succeeding efforts, and restoring per- 
sons and things to their due and best settlement." 

At the close of the preceding year, it was reported 
that the king was inclined to favour the Nonconfor- 
mists, and some of the London ministers presented an 
address on the subject. His majesty received them 
graciously, and promised to do the utmost to get them 
admitted into the establishment ; but this, like some of 
his former promises, was soon forgotten. Instead of 
an enlargement of their privileges, the Act against con- 
venticles was renewed and made more severe than be- 
fore. It was enacted, " That all clauses in this act shall 
be construed most largely and beneficially for the sup- 
pression of conventicles, and for the justification and 
encouragement of all persons to be employed in the 
execution thereof ; and that no warrant nor mittimus 
shall be made void or reversed for any default in the 
form, and if a person flee from one county or corpora- 
tion to another, his goods and chattels shall be seizable 
wherever they are found." By this act, the most in- 
famous characters were encouraged to become inform- 
ers ; multitudes of perjuries were the result, to obtain 
the rewards ; convictions took place without juries ; 
heavy penalties were inflicted; houses were plundered, 
and the peaceable inhabitants disturbed any hour of 
the day or night, if some malicious neighbour pretend- 
ed there was a religious meeting. Well might Mr. 
Heywood exclaim : " Behold a disappointment ! We 
looked for peace, but no good came ; we hoped for en- 
largement, but behold restraint ; God's anger may be 


seen in man's displeasure. A fourth act of parliament 
against the poor Nonconformists is come forth, laying 
heavy j)enalties on all that are found at private meet- 
ings, which are called seditious conventicles : viz. five 
shillings each for the people, £20. for the minister, 
£20. for the house, £lOO. for a justice of the peace if he 
do not prosecute, and £5. for an inferior officer; besides 
such circumstances as bespeak it artfully and wickedly 
framed, and such as leave us no evasions. This takes 
place May 10th, 1670, and hires the vilest wretches to 
turn informers, in hopes of the third part of all the 
fines ; five persons make the meeting unlawful. Lord, 
whither will the rage of men transport them ? How 
long shall the wicked triumph? They have driven us 
into corners by the Act of Uniformity, and will they 
not let us alone in them ? Did they not banish us 
from our habitations by the Five-mile Act, and is that 
deficient ? Did they not make one Act against conven- 
ticles, and was not that sufficient for our punishment 
but it must be enforced by another for the same pur- 
pose ? Do they not suspect the validity of the former, 
why then superadd another ? Do they not see that 
no weapon formed against God's people prospers? Do 
not the Jews at length discern, that rolling a great 
stone, sealing it, and setting a watch, are but making 
it as sure as men can ? God can invalidate men's 
power. Who ever hardened himself against God and 
prospered ? Where are the proud persecutors of for- 
mer ages, and the edicts of emperors engraven in brass 
and executed with blood ? Blessed be God, the Lord 
Jesus reigns, and will reign till he has made all his 
enemies his footstool. They are so far from hindering, 
that they shall help Christ up to his throne. The 
wrath of man shall praise God, and the remainder he 
will restrain ; the more unreasonable men grow the 


more God will appear, and the more equal will his 
ways of justice be found. O my soul, mourn for thy 
sins that have procured these acts, and pity those that 
have framed them. Alas ! that swearing, blasphemy, 
drunkenness, and sabbath-breaking should find so little 
discouragement by the laws of man, and that all their 
care is to suppress religious exercises. Lord, open 
rulers' eyes, to see that true religion is the support, 
and profaneness the undermining of the nation." 

The severity of these measures did not cause Mr. 
Hey wood to desist from his zealous labours, but made 
him the more indefatigable in his exertions, though, 
for a season, at least, more careful. " May 8th," he 
mentions, " I preached at Coley-hall. We had a large 
auditory and a delightful day, reckoning it to be a 
farewell, because of the new Conventicle Act. On 
Tuesday, we kept a private fast at Mr. Dawson's : it 
was a wonderful and heart-melting season. On Thurs- 
day, we kept a fast at Mr. Ramsden's. The Lord's 
day after, I preached at Dinah Tetlow's, where we had 
just the number. Monday, we kept a private fast at 
J. Priestley's. Tuesday and Thursday, I preached to 
the appointed number. Afterwards I preached several 
times in the week at home, admitting only four at a 
time ; and sometimes I preached abroad, and in friends' 

It has already been seen, that Mr. H. sometimes 
preached at Coley chapel, in the occasional absence of 
Mr. Hoole, without interruption ; but his adversaries 
could not be content to let him enjoy such opportu- 
nities with impunity. " May 22nd," he records, " as 
I was rising out of my bed, my servant came to inform 
me, that there were two men desiring to speak to me. 
Their business was to ask me, if I would venture to 
preach in the chapel, Mr. Hoole being absent, a;id, no 

VOL. I. L 


notice having been given of a vacancy, many of the 
people would come and be disappointed. At first, I 
absolutely refused. They told me they should be sorry 
to bring me into trouble, but if I were willing, the 
chapel doors should be opened, and the bell rung as 
usual. I hesitated a while, consulted some neigh- 
bours, begged direction of God, and on the follow- 
ing considerations, at length consented : — They were 
my ancient people ; I had been forcibly thrust from 
them ; the spirits of opposers seemed to be now much 
moderated ; it being ^Vhitsuntide, if there were no ser- 
vice, the sabbath would be profaned ; many persons 
accused us for not being bold enough to ventui'e upon 
duty where there was the appearance of danger ; and, 
in a word, I considered the example of the Lord Jesus 
Christ, who would go into Judea, though he knew the 
Jews there sought to kill him. But this consideration 
had the greatest weight on me — the souls of poor sin- 
ners, said I within myself, are of such value as should 
induce us to hazard all, where there is the prospect of 
being useful to them ; and who knows, but God may 
have designs of mercy to accomplish on some this day? 
Upon this, I went to the chapel about nine o'clock, 
and having entered the pulpit, I read some portions 
of scripture, and after a psalm was sung, I prayed and 
preached without interruption. My text was. Judges 
V. 31, ' Let them that love him be as the sun when he 
goeth forth in his might.' Soon after one o'clock, in 
the afternoon, we assembled again ; but before the 
service was concluded, Mr. S. Ellis brought the church- 
warden and overseer threatening to fine them £5. 
each if they refused to act. The officers seemed to dis- 
like the business, but S. E. pushed them on before him. 
One of them was so awed and ashamed that he was 
seized with a fit of sickness, sunk down into a seat> 


and could not lift up his head, nor give any account of 
the persons present* The informer walked from place 
to place in the chapel, looking at the people to see who 
they were, and now and then fixing his eyes upon me, 
but saying nothing. This occasioned some distraction 
to us, but I was enabled to go on, requesting the atten- 
tion of the congregation, and desiring them to look in 
their bibles for the proofs to which I referred for the 
confirmation of what I delivered. When the officers 
went out, S. E. sent one of them in again to take down 
names. He returned himself, and walked through the 
chapel, sometimes standing at the end of the seats, 
looking people in the face, and then going out into the 
yard to complete his list of names. But though the 
place was filled with his own neighbours, he and the 
officers were so confused, that they could not make out 
the names of more than ten persons in the congregation. 
About eight days after, Mr. White and Mr. Copley, 
two justices, took my affair into consideration. The 
informer was present, asking the officers from time to 
time. Did you not see such a person there ? But of the 
many hundreds who were in the chapel on the day 
above mentioned, still only ten could be nominated." 

" July 13th, J. M. constable, T. H. and S. W. came 
to make distress on my goods, with three porters to 
carry them away. The constable took hold of the bed 
whereon I used to lie, and putting off his hat, said, I 
seize on this bed for his Majesty's use. I told them it 
was sufficient for them to mark the goods, and leave 
them till there were persons to buy them. They re- 
plied, the informer will buy them. So they took the 
bed and bedding, some tables, chairs, chests, and books, 
to the value, at least, of £l4. My wife desired them 
to take chairs instead of the meal-chest. They, how- 
ever, paid no regard to her entreaties, but taking a 

L 2 


curtain and spreading it on the floor, they poured our 
little stock of jneal upon it, and took away the chest. 
They carried the goods to a public-house, where they 
had bespoke a good dinner, telling the people they 
should have overplus goods in plenty to pay for what 
they might spend. They got persons of their own 
cast to value the goods ; and, upon their partial valu- 
ation, they amounted to £10. I6s. Sd ; but they were 
certainly worth much more. Ten large books they 
valued at thirty shillings. They sent about the bell- 
man in Halifax to cry a sale of the goods, but they 
could not sell one article. The justices told the officers, 
they might take them and divide them among them- 
selves ; but this they did not choose to do, as they 
said they had no immediate occasion for them. The 
constable, grooving entirely weary of the business, was 
glad to deliver all up to the man who succeeded him 
in the office. The people of the house, where the 
goods were lodged, grew impatient about them, and 
told the officer, if he did not take them away, they 
must be thrown out of doors, for they would not have 
them any longer. They then got leave to lay them 
up in a barn, at Coley-hall, a year after they were 
seized. At length, one R. Reyner came with a cart 
to convey them to Wakefield.* When they were 
loading the cart, one of the men said, in derision, 
* Where is Heywood's God now, to whom he used to 
pray so much?'" 

On this transaction, Mr. H. remarks : " Lord, whi- 
ther will not men's rage carry them if left to them- 
selves ? Is plundering in fashion in times of peace ? 
Must preaching the gospel cost confiscation ? Are 
there laws to authorize robbery ? Shall Magna 

* Ten years afterwards, they remained at Wakefield as useless 


Charta and common humanity have no place ? Shall 
poor ministers have their estates taken from them for 
preaching, instead of living by the altar ? Are these 
all the wages we must have for our studies, preaching, 
and prayers ? Can the ungrateful world afford us no 
better reward ? Father, forgive them, they know not 
what they do ! O that this sin may not be laid to 
England's charge ! Is preaching the word grown so 
heinous a thing, that it must be construed into sedi- 
tion ? Is it likely that sedition can be hatched in a 
public congregation, where all are free to hear ? But 
this is no new thing. Paul was accounted a mover 
of sedition, and Elijah, a troubler in Israel. But why 
should I exclaim against men ? They act according 
to their nature and commission from above ; God 
doth that righteously which men do impiously. The 
Sabeans and Chaldeans took away Job's property, but 
he saith, ' The Lord hath taken away.' ' Is there evil 
in the city, and the Lord hath not done it ? ' The 
hand of God is in this. O my soul, lay to heart thy 
indisposedness in that day's duty. Examine thy prin- 
ciples, rule, and end. Take shame to thyself in what 
thou seest amiss, and give God the glory of what was 
his own. Be nothing in thyself, and let God be all in 
all in what thou dost for him ; then when God and 
thy soul are friends, submit to his good pleasure, re- 
joice in tribulation, suffer joyfully the spoiling of thy 
goods, and be not only content, but thankful for the 
honour of losing any thing for God. Remember the 
grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, who, though he was 
rich, infinitely rich, yet for thy sake became poor, 
that thou mightest be rich ; and art thou unwilling to 
become poor for him ? Dost thou love thy goods bet- 
ter than thy <jod ? Have men left thee no table to 
eat at, or bed to lie on ? Thy Lord Jesus had not 


where to lay his head. Dost thou live by borrowing ? 
Bless God thou hast friends of whom to borrow. 
What great difference is there between thy own and 
others' goods, if thou hast the sight and use of them ? 
Property is little more than a fancy. Bless God thou 
hadst any thing to lose in his cause, and that he will 
accept such poor offerings. Who am I, that God 
should honour me so much ? Many richer than I, 
have not lost so much in the cause of God ; this is free 
love ! Lord, forgive my ingratitude ! I was lately 
prisoner for God, and now he hath honoured me with 
the loss of part of my estate for him ; it is welcome — 
welcome prisons, losses, crosses, reproaches, racks, and 
death itself, if the Lord call me to it, and will enable 
me to endure it to his glory. The suffering side is the 
safe side. God might have left me to have been a per- 
secutor ; but he hath long employed me in active 
work, and now in suffering work : this is as acceptable 
as the former. O that God would pity the instru- 
ments of this my trouble ! O that God would give 
the world to see a greater beauty in suffering for 
Christ, who now partly pity me for my loss, and cen- 
sure me for my rashness ! O that God would pity 
this poor nation, involved in so much guilt by perse- 
cution, and exposed to so much wrath and indignation 
from above !" 

On the same day that his goods were seized, Mr. 
H. says, " I preached in the afternoon to the number 
four, on Heb. x. 34, * Ye had compassion of me in my 
bonds, and took joyfully the spoiling of your goods, 
knowing in yourselves, tbat ye have in heaven a bet- 
ter and an enduring substance.' On Friday I preached 
again from the same text, and on Saturday went into 
Lancashire. July 21st, returned home and found all 
well ; blessed be God for this jourmey ; 23rd, I went 


to Pool, and preached in a chapel there. Blessed be 
God that a new door is opened for God's people. I 
preached several times at home in the course of the 
week, and on the Lord's day four times, twice at home 
and twice abrodd." 

He had suffered joyfully the spoiling of his goods 
for his attachment to the work of the Lord, and he 
was called to experience public reproach also, for main- 
taining the truths of the gospel. " That my sufferings 
may be complete," he observes, " God hath added re- 
proach to all the rest. Last Lord's day, July 31st, 
1670, Dr. Hook took occasion to controvert an ex- 
pression in my book of Heart Treasure, which is 
this : ' Though grace be of greater worth, it is dis- 
putable whether it attain to greater strength than cor- 
ruption, even in the hearts of the sanctified, in this 
life.' He called this, an unheard of assertion, and 
loaded it with dreadful conseqviences, as patronizing 
all profaneness ; adding, that on this principle he may 
be a good man who is only as much sober as drunk. 
He exclaimed most bitterly for a quarter of an hour 
against such as will dare to preach and print such 
dangerous errors. What I there say is disputahle. 
Dr. Reynolds, bishop of Norwich, lays down as a 
positive assertion in these words : ' Original sin is 
stronger in the regenerate than the graces they have 
received.' Strange it should be an error in my book, 
and a truth in his ; but partiality blinds men. I am 
glad he hath found no greater error in my book, than 
what my own sad experience too evidently demonstrates. 
Alas ! I fear there were bitter railing accusations 
against an absent person. But why do I find fault 
with him ? Hath not God bidden him, as David 
said, of Shimei ?- Hath not God sent this for my fur- 
ther humiliation? Is it a christian spirit in me to 


snarl at the stone that is cast at me? No, God forbid! 
I will lay my hand upon my mouth and be silent. The 
will of the Lord be done. If my reproach may pro- 
mote God's glory it is as welcome as my loss. I am 
not the first that hath been called a deceiver of the 
people ; my dear Saviour underwent much more. Re- 
proach is grievous to a generous spirit, but reproach 
for Christ is welcome to a gracious soul. Can we ex- 
pect better fare than our Saviour, who was accounted 
pne that wrought his miracles by the devil's aid ? 
Moses esteemed the reproach of Christ greater riches 
than the treasures of Egypt ; and shall we be afraid of 
it ? God forbid ! Did not the primitive Christians 
rejoice that they were accounted worthy to suffer shame 
for his sake : and shall we fret at it ? O that God 
would help us all, and me in particular, to act as be- 
comes Christians, to act honourably under dishonour, 
to pass on cheerfully in our christian course, through 
good and evil report, to give no occasion to the adver- 
sary to speak reproachfully, and to pity and pray for 
our adversaries. O that God would clear up our in- 
nocence, roll away our reproach, and set us as stars in 
the firmament of the church !" 

These persecutions for righteousness' sake did not 
prevent Mr. Heywood from pursuing what appeared 
to him the path of duty, but made him more courageous 
and daring than before. " Aug. 6th," he informs us, 
*' I went to Shadwell to preach there ; and though, the 
Lord's day before, officers went to take the minister, and 
I heard as I went of purj^oses to disturb us, yet God pre- 
served us all that day in quietness. It was a good 
day, and we had a numerous assembly deeply affected. 
On Friday, returned home and found all well : blessed 
be God. O for a thankful heart ! The Lord's day 
after, young Mr. Root preached at Shadwell, when 


Lord Saville, Mr. Copley, Mr. Hammond, and forty- 
troopers from York came and took Mr. Root, carried 
him to York Castle, and took four or five hundred 
names of people, seized their horses and made them 
pay five shillings apiece before they had them again. 
This was on August 28th, on which day I was earnestly 
desired to be there ; I had promised, but my visit was 
afterwards postponed. Mr. Root was kept close pri- 
soner, put into the low jail among twelve thieves, and 
had double irons on him four days and nights ; but on 
Capt. Hodgson's importunity with Mr. Copley, he was 
released. Oct. 4th, I went to help him in a day of 
thanksgiving for his deliverance out of prison. God 
was present on that day. From Lord's day morning 
till Friday night I preached nine times. Blessed be 
God for work ; methinks I am never better than when 
I work most. Dec. 27th, I went to E. Hickball's ; 
when I had finished, and was sitting by the fire taking 
a pipe, the constable and others came, they were five 
in all. They knocked at the door, and wanted to 
know who were in the house ? They came into the 
parlour where we sat still. We asked them what they 
saw in us more than others ? Surely friends may visit 
each other this Christmas time. A little while after 
they went away, sat at the alehouse, and wrote down 
our names. What they intend to do, the Lord only 
knows. One Binns a young man, went and fetched 
the constable to obtain money ; but we had done our 
work when they came. The next day we had ap- 
pointed a fast to be kept at Sam. Ellison's, but I had 
no sooner got thither, than the constable who had 
followed us arrived. I went away and the others as- 
sembled at D. Parker's. The constable came to de- 
mand fines in the Shadwell business about Mr. Root." 
The religious opportunities Mr. H. now enjoyed. 


were mostly of a private nature, and with small num- 
bers : but the Saviour's promise to his disciples was 
abundantly fulfilled in his happy experience ; " Where 
two or three are gathered together in my name, there 
am I in the midst of them." The garrets and cham- 
bers in which Mr. H. occasionally dispensed the word 
of life to a few of Zion's travellers, were frequently con- 
verted into Bethels by the presence and blessing of the 
Most High, and amidst the darkness of their midnight 
assemblies they were cheered by the light of the Sun 
of righteousness : the more men persecuted, the more 
God comforted. " March 24th, 1671," he mentions, 
*' we had a private meeting at my house, and partook 
of the Lord's supper. O ! it was a delightful season ; 
though I did not find my heart so much melted that 
day as the day before in preparation, wherein I was 
much carried out in the confession of sin, and renewing 
my covenant with God. April 19th, we had a com- 
fortable day at J. Priestley's. O what a frame was my 
heart in ; it hath seldom been so drawn out. Blessed 
be God ; he will bow his ear when hearts are prepared. 
On the 21st, my wife, sons, and maid, set out with me 
on a journey into Lancashire. At Denton I preached on 
the Lord's day for my father Angier, who still enjoys 
his liberty. On Monday we kept a solemn day of 
thanksgiving in my father Angler's study. O what a 
day was it ! I may almost say none like it. These 
prayers and tears God will hear. I despatched some 
worldly business about my small estate in Little Lever, 
and sealed writings, by which I am become a purchaser, 
I hope in presage of our future settlement, parallel to 
the case of Jeremiah. I confess it is strange, I should 
buy land in such a day as this ; but my case is almost 
like the prophet's, I am necessitated to buy it. I should 
have preached at Cockey chapel on the Lord's day ; 


but though I was invited, I was put off disingenuously, 
for they durst not venture. I preached morning and 
night at brother Crompton's. On Thursday, we came 
to Rochdale, on our way homewards : but a messenger 
came to us about four o'clock in the morning, to ac- 
quaint us with the death of brother Laurence Cromp- 
ton, whom we left well on Monday. It was a sudden 
and astonishing blow. May the Lord sanctify it." 

The anniversary of the 24tli of August, a day so 
distinguished in the records of the English church, 
and so memorable in the history of Dissent, was ob- 
served with great solemnity by the ejected ministers, 
and ought not to pass unnoticed by their successors 
and descendants. It was generally kept by the former 
as a day of fasting and prayer, and might be well occu- 
pied by the latter in reviewing the annals of Noncon- 
formity, or in examining and illustrating the principles 
and reasons of Dissent. The following are specimens 
of the manner in which this day was noticed by Mr. 
Hey wood : " Aug. 24, 1665, being the killing day of 
all Nonconformist ministers, I appointed a fast at my 
house, and propounded four things ; first, to lament 
before the Lord this sad judgment; secondly, to inquire 
of God what was the cause ; thirdly, to beg of God 
the sanctified use of this dreadful stroke ; and fourth- 
ly, to entreat God to remove it. — Aug. 24, 1670, being 
Bartholomew's day, just eight years since the Noncon- 
formists were struck dead by the sad Uniformity Act, 
we kept a fast that day in my house, and had the help 
of some christian friends. O ! it was a sweet day. 
My heart was wonderfully helped, melted, and enlarg- 
ed. O for an answer of peace ! — This being Aug. 24, 
1671, called black Bartholomew day, I resolved to 
keep a fast : and because I came home only last night, 
and could get no other company, I kept it with my 


family. The forenoon we spent in prayer. Eliezer * 
prayed first, very sensibly though short. John prayed 
a long time, and exceeding pertinently and affection- 
ately, weeping mnch : I wondered at it. God helped 
our maid, my wife, and myself wonderfully. O what 
a melting duty was it ! In the afternoon I prayed, 
and preached to a considerable number of people. 
Blessed be God for this day ; he will hear." 

Such happy seasons encouraged Mr. H. to continue 
waiting on God in private, and emboldened him in the 
persecuted ways of Nonconformity. " Aug. 27th," he 
says, " I preached at home as usual, had a numerous 
assembly, and God helped. Two bailiffs of Bradford 
were at a neighbour's house, and took a man ; but 
God either hid us from them, or chained them up : 
blessed be his name. Sept. — , I went to keep a fast 
at Mr. Sharp's, Little Horton. Mr. Sales preached, 
Mr. Sharp,! Mr. Waterhouse, i Mr. Boys, and I pray- 
ed. I was much straitened in j)rayer ; God is wise. 
Perhaps I was conceited of myself, and others expected 
too much from me. I have not felt my spirits so out 
of frame, this long time ; but God made amends, for I 
had wonderful meltings of heart when another was en- 
gaged in duty. It is welcome ; let me be ashamed, so 
that God may be glorified and my heart bettered. 

* Eliezer was only fourteen, and John fifteen years of age at 
this time. 

t A long and familiar acquaintance was preserved between Mr. 
H. and the family at Little Horton. I\Ir. Sharp was related to 
the archbishop of the same name, and became the minister of the 
congregation at Mill-Hill in Leeds, where he died. Lord's day, 
Aug. 27, 1793, aged 60. He was a man of very superior abilities, 
and his death was much lamented. 

X jMr. Waterhouse was ejected from Bradford, after which he 
lived privately, occasionally preaching in his own house. He was 
a learned man and much esteemed. 


There was a considerable number present of different 
persuasions. It was a good day. Sept. 13, we had a 
private day of fasting and prayer, and I preached. It 
was such a day as I never had in all my life, that I 
remember. My heart was exceedingly drawn out for 
myself, my family, congregation, and country, with 
such a measure of feeling, weeping, and elocution, as if I 
had been taking leave of my people and the world. — 
Lord's day, Jan. 14th, 1672, I preached at home, and 
there was a great assembly, because there was no 
preacher at the chapel. About one o'clock, tidings 
were brought to me, that S. Ellis had obtained a war- 
rant, and was resolved to come and break us up, which 
occasioned me to dismiss the people. The rest of the 
day, Captain Hodgson and I spent in prayer. God 
made that providence work much good." 

When Mr. Heywood was prevented from proclaim- 
ing the truths of the gospel as publicly as he desired 
by preaching, he was resolved to edify his people, and 
bless the church in future days by employing his pen. 
It was in this period of his life, he completed his pub- 
lications entitled Heart Treasure — Closet Prayer — 
Sure Mercies of David. These compositions, as may be 
naturally supposed, have some relation to the times in 
which they were written,* and contain a compendium 
of the divine truths that mostly occupied his attention, 

* In his preface to the last of these, dated June 1670, he evi- 
dently refers to the spoiling of goods which he and many of his 
fellow-sufferers endured about this time : " The tyrant's rage car- 
not pluck sure mercies out of your hearts and hands. This con- 
sideration is of singular use in a losing time. IMen may take away 
our estates, liberties, and privileges, but they cannot take away 
our spiritual mercies. They may degrade us, and remove us from 
our functions and offices, but cannot dissettle our souls from rela- 
tion to Christ, or a state of grace, or from blessed influences of 


and comforted his mind in this season of trial and 

The various circumstances recorded in this chapter, 
show how diligently Mr. H. was employed in promot- 
ing the spiritual welfare of others, and the following 
passages prove he was equally careful of the life of re- 
ligion in his own soul : " This day, July 31st, 1671, 
having the opportunity of solitariness, all my family 
being from home, I set myself solemnly to religious 
exercises. I first read the 139th Psalm concerning 
God's omniscience and omnipresence, with tears in my 
eyes, commenting upon it and applying it to myself, 
I accordingly set myself as in the presence of God, de- 
siring to deal truly and faithfully with my own soul in 
self-examination, and to lay open all my known sins. 
I fell down upon my knees, and for about an hour the 
Lord helped me to open my heart before him, to con- 
fess my iniquities with grief, sorrow, and shame, so far 
as I could call them to mind, and to cry to God with 
many tears for pardon of, and power against my sins, 
God brought my bitterest enemies to my thoughts, and 
helped me seriously to beg mercy for their souls, for my 
relations, for the congregation at Coley, for all other 
congregations, for my native land, and some other ob- 
jects. The Lord hath given me some secret intimations 
of pardon and acceptance, and did communicate himself 
graciously to my heart. These things being consider- 
ed, I am pressed in spirit to renew my covenant with 
my God in writing, as I have been doing it on my 
knees. O that God would help me to plain dealing in 
this case, that I may not deal falsely either in making 
or keeping covenant with him. So far as I know any 
thing of this treacherous heart, I desire to be upright 
and downright in this business ; for none is privy to 
these things but God and my own conscience : and I 


do this the rather, because I have found my own heart 
inconstant, that I may bind myself under my own 
hand-writing, taking my warrant from Isa. xliv. 5." 

" Dreadful Jehovah, I am thy poor creature, and a 
grievous sinner, a transgressor from the womb, and a 
wanderer all my days to this moment ; lying under 
the guilt of the first man's first sin, and following 
such ruinous steps in various actual transgressions. 
I am by nature a child of wrath, a slave to Satan, 
under thy curse, and liable to hell torments ; but thou 
hast, of thy own infinite mercy, spared my life, and 
preserved me in the world above forty years. Thou 
broughtest me up under religious parents, gavest me 
thy good word to read and hear preached, didst touch 
my heart with remorse for sin and cause workings of 
heart, before I was twelve years of age ; and though 
I backslided fearfully into great sins and a course of 
security, yet thy Spirit hath several times fetched me 
home again, and thy grace hath indulgently received 
me. Still I find a deceitful, backsliding heart with- 
drawing from the living God ; and, having tried 
prayers, tears, vows, and fastings, still ray heart gives 
me the slip, and grows formal, distracted, and secure. 
I here call thee, my God, to witness, that it is the 
desire of my soul to cleave to thee with full purpose of 
heart. I do therefore acquiesce in, and admire thy 
glorious design of saving lost mankind by thy blessed 
Son, my precious Saviour, Jesus Christ, being God- 
man, the only Mediator between an offended and righ- 
teous God, and guilty, condemned sinners. I thank- 
fully accept of him as my only Prophet, to teach me 
by his word and Spirit the way of life ; as my Priest, 
to make satisfaction to thy justice for my sin, and in- 
tercede for my soul ; as my Lord and Sovereign, to 
rule and govern me. And, though thou hast helped 


me to preach many a sermon, to put up many a prayer, 
and to distribute spiritual and bodily alms, I renounce 
all as if I had done nothing, and rely only upon thy 
grace and the merits of thy Son for my justification ; 
and if ever thou accept me here or save me hereafter, 
I must put all to the account of free grace alone. I do 
also here give up myself to thee, body and soul, all 
that I am, have, or can do, or shall be, to thy service 
and use, looking upon myself henceforth no more as 
my own, but the Lord's, entreating thee to sanctify 
my whole soul, and sjiint, and body, resolving by thy 
grace to spend and be spent for thee. If thou hast 
given any faculties of soul, gifts of mind, strength of 
body, or opportunity of service, I resolve, and hereby 
promise to employ all, in the way of my duty, to thy 
glory, depending only upon thee for strength and as- 
sistance. I do also unfeignedly bind myself, under 
every obligation, to fight against Satan's temptations, 
to mortify my most beloved lusts and corruptions, to 
avoid all appearance and occasions of sin, and to this 
end, to study thy holy word, to perform all the duties 
thou requirest of me, and to walk all my days in 
obedience to thy revealed will, to love mine enemies, 
deny myself, bear the cross thou layest upon me, and 
follow the Lord Jesus, what way soever he shall be 
pleased to lead me. If, at any time, through the 
weakness of my flesh and the strength of temptation, 
I be overcome, my desire and design are, by the assist- 
ance of thy grace, to rise again by rejientance, to con- 
fess my sins, to make fresh application to the blood of 
Christ for pardon, to renew my engagements to sin no 
more, to be more watchful over my own heart, humbly 
hoping for mercy according to the covenant of thy 
grace, desiring thee not to leave me at any time to my- 
self, but to hold me in thy hand that my footsteps 


slip not. O that tlioii wouldest crown tliese engage- 
ments with strength of performance and perseverance 
to the end ! I thank thee, that thou hast given me 
a heart to make this covenant, that thou hast accepted 
me through my surety, through whom all my good 
flows from thee, and through whom myself and ail I 
do are accepted by thee. Thus I have avouched the 
Lord to be my God, hoping thou dost ratify it in hea- 
ven according to thy word. This is the day of my 
solemn contract with thee, in the sadness of my heart 
lamenting past failures, and hoping and longing for 
completion of this engagement in the kingdom of hea- 
ven with joy and triumph. Thus do I make bold, O 
my God ! to subscribe myself, 

Thy devoted servant for ever, 


This Itixfant, Juhj 31, 1671, in my 
Studij, at Coley-hall. 

"August 29th, 1671. I set myself to review my 
state, and especially my course of life since my solemn 
entering into covenant with God. I find many things 
amiss, and have not kept close to it ; but have omitted 
and carelessly performed duties, closed with tempta- 
tions, committed sins, and fallen again into a course of 
carelessness and lukewarmness. I have therefore first 
dealt with my own heart, which I found in an ill 
frame. Then read Hosea xiv. which I saw was adapted 
to my condition : I commented on it, and my heart 
was melted. Then I fell on my knees, and found 
some measure of God's presence in confessing sin and 
supplicating mercy. I laid the bible on my knees, and 
improved those commands, directions, promises, and 
pathetical reflections of true penitents in that chapter. 
My heart was a little more warmed, the fire burned, 

VOL. I. M 


and O what a flame did God excite in my soul ! Now 
I experience that God heals backsliders, and that he 
loves freely. () that the same free grace may prevent 
future backslidings ! May I never again return to 
folly as I have done ! Alas, I have found a wretched, 
treacherous, abominable heart ! I have great cause to 
suspect the truth of my repentance, whether it be suit- 
able and sufficient, because it is so ineffectual to pre- 
vent sinning. I have fallen by mine iniquity ; it is a 
wonder I am not in hell ! God be merciful to me a 
sinner ! None knows how vile I am ! I am afraid of 
falling into sin again ; afraid to go out of my study 
into the world, company, or employment. I find little 
strength, and am weary of the world, weary of my 
sinful heart ! * O wretched man that I am ! who shall 
deliver me from the body of this death ?' When will 
death part body and soul, that it may part my soul 
and sin ? ^Vhen shall I be above the reach of Satan's 
temptations or occasions of sin ? Lord, hasten that 
blessed release, that I may be with Christ, my Lord. 

The late Dr. Fawcett has recorded an interesting 
and remarkable providence concerning Mr. Hey wood, 
which probably occurred during this period of his life, 
though no account of the circumstance is to be found 
among his manuscripts now extant.* The anecdote 

* In a correspondence with the AVriter of this Memoir, rela- 
tive to this anecdote and another given page 115, the late venerable 
Dr. Fawcett says : " The particular dates of these events I am not 
able to ascertain with exactness, but the facts have been so strongly, 
so invariably, and so constantly affirmed, by persons of undoubted 
verity, some of whom I could name, and others who have been 
long dead, that I have not the least reason to doubt the truth of 
them. The late ]\Ir. J. Hudson, of Clayton, informed me, that 
fifty years ago he conversed with an aged woman, who was pre- 
sent at the meeting at Moneybents in Craven, where Mr. H. was. 


is as follows: "One winter's morning, while it was 
yet dark, the horse was saddled, and this good man 
set out, like Abraham, when he left his father's house, 
not knowing whither he went. He went along in bye 
ways for some time, for fear of being seen. Having 
nothing in his pocket to bear his travelling expences, 
he committed himself to the protection of Providence. 
He determined at length to leave his horse at full li- 
berty to go what way he would ; and thus travelled 
on till both were weary. Towards evening, the horse 
bent his course to a farm-house, a little out of the road. 
Mr. H. called at the door, and a decent woman came 
out to enquire what he wanted. ' I have reason,' said 
he, * to make an apology for giving you this trouble, 
being an entire stranger in these parts. My horse 
stands in need, as well as myself, of shelter and re- 
freshment for the night ; if you could any way make 
it convenient to furnish my horse with a little hay, and 
a stand under cover, and myself with a seat by your 
fire-side, I ask no more.' The good woman, a little 

entertained, and though then but a child, she had, when jMr. 
Hudson saw her, a perfect recollection of the circumstances re- 
corded in that part of the story." After this period Mr. H. re- 
peatedly mentions going to visit and preach to his friends in 
Craven: and when his son John went in Sept. 1678, to live with 
John Hey, in Gisburn parish, he was " to preach to that people," 
says Mr. H. " to whom I have a special relation." He also notices 
having been called to preach in Craven three times in the summer 
of KJ/B, and says of the people : " They are willing to attend ordi- 
nances, and every time I go the number is increased, and God 
stirs up some affections. I found my heart more than ordinarily 
enlarged in pleading for their conversion when amongst them the 
last time, Aug. 10th, (1676.) It is an ignorant place, and hath 
had no good preaching there for many generations, and now there 
is a moving, who knows what may be done ? There are some 
serious, gi-acious Christians among them, which occasioned ray 
going, and with whom I have had delightful communion in fast 
days, and at the Lord's supper." 

M 2 


surprised at his request, told liim she would consult 
her husband. After a few minutes, they both came to 
the door, and Mr. H. repeated his solicitation, but told 
them he had no money to satisfy them for their trouble; 
yet he hoped God would reward them. They im- 
mediately desired him to alight ; the master led the 
horse into the stable, and the mistress began to pre- 
pare something for Mr. H. to eat. He told her, he 
was concerned to see her give herself so much trouble, 
lie did not request either a supper or bed, but only to 
sit by the fire-side till the morning. The mistress as- 
sured him, that for an act of hospitality she did not 
expect any reward, and that though the accommodations 
her house would afford, were but indifferent, he should 
be welcome ; and therefore hoped he would make him- 
self easy." 

" After supper, they all sat down by the fire, and 
the master of the house desired to know of the stranger, 
what countryman he was. ' I was born,' said he, ' in 
Lancashire, but I have a wife and family in the neigh- 
bourhood of Halifax.' ' That is a town,' said the farmer, 
' where I have been ; and some years ago I had some 
acquaintance there. Pray do you know Mr. S. and 
Mr. D. ? And is old Mr. F. yet alive ?' The stranger 
gave suitable answers to these, and other enquiries. 
At length the kind hostess asked him, ' if he knew any 
thing of one Mr. Oliver Heywood, who was formerly 
a minister at some chapel not far from Halifax, but 
was now, on some account or other, forbidden to preach.' 
The stranger replied, ' There is a great deal of noise 
and talk about him ; some speak well, others say every 
thing that is bad of him : for my own part I can say 
little in his favour.' ' I believe,' said the farmer, ' he 
is of that sect which is every where spoken against ; 
but pray, do you personally know him ? And what is 


it that inclines you to form such an indifferent opinion 
of his character ?' ' I do know something of him,' said 
the stranger, ' but as I do not choose to propagate an 
ill report of any one, if you please we will talk on some 
other subject.' After keeping the farmer and his wife 
in suspense for some time, who were a little uneasy at 
what he had said, he told them, he was the the poor 
outcast. All was then surprise, and joy, and thank- 
fulness, that a merciful Providence had brought him 
under their roof. The farmer said, ' Mr. H. I am glad 
to see you here, having long had a sincere regard for 
you, from the favourable report I have always heard 
of you. The night is not far spent, I have a few 
neighbours that love the gospel, and if you will give us 
a word of exhortation, I will run and acquaint them. 
This is an obscure place, and as your coming here is 
not known, I hope we shall have no interruption.' 
Mr. H. consented ; a small congregation was gathered ; 
and he preached to them with that fervor, affection, 
and enlargement, which attending circumstances served 
to inspire. On this joyful occasion, a small collection 
was voluntarily made to help the poor traveller on his 


Mr. Heywood's {/lan/cfiibiess for private Liberty — Declaration of 
public Liberty to the Noncoiiformists — Mr. Heywood's removal to 
Northowram — Receipt of License — Reflections — Formation of a 
christian Society at Northowram — Church covenant — Union of 
Trcsbyterians and Independents — Mr. Heywood's Labours and 
success — Ordination at Manchester — Dr. Hook's Opposition — 
Dedication of his sons to the Ministry — Personal Covenants. 

In the preceding detail we have seen the severity with 
wliich the Nonconformists were treated ; and, though 
Mr. Heywood was involved in trouble for preaching 
publicly at Coley chapel, yet he was protected in his 
private labours. This mercy made a deep impression 
on his grateful'heart, and he set apart Jan. 31st, 1672, 
as a day of thanksgiving. On this occasion he says, 
" It was a good day. Reflect, O my soul, on the cir- 
cumstances of thy case. What ! a day of thanksgiving 
in so sad a time of affliction! Is it seasonable? Is it not 
a solecism to rejoice in a day of sorrow ? No. As public 
restraint may be consistent with private liberty ; so 
private thankfulness may be consistent with occasion 
of public mourning. It is true, carnal joy is unsuitable 
to the time of the church's sorrow ; yet spiritual joy 
may be maintained in the midst of outward grief. 
Blessed be God that we have his presence though in 
private. I have now been at Coley-hall above six years, 
and have had interesting, frequent, and numerous meet- 
ings all the time witliout disturbance : and doth not 
this deserve our thankfulness ? ^Vell mav we bless 


God for a little opening of the door of liberty, though 
there be many adversaries, for praise may push it fur- 
ther open as well as prayer. The Act of Parliament 
saith, five shall not meet ; God saith, five score shall 
meet to worship him in private. Men say, we shall 
be punished ; God saith, no, ' touch not mine anointed, 
and do my prophets no harm :' and it must be accord- 
ing to the divine commission. Men shut, but God 
opens ; the omnipotent God is beyond impotent man. 
God's ordinances wherever dispensed, are the gate of 
the Lord, into which the righteous do enter. Who 
knows what good the Lord hath done to precious souls 
in a private way? He is the same in a chamber as 
in a church ; God orders all for the best. Little did 
I think to have been thus employed ; my resolution 
was to attend in public, if not to be a speaker, at least 
a hearer; but God hath seen good otherwise to dispose 
of me, for when men had thrust me out of public work, 
he employed me in private. I have many times 
thought and said, ' I will not make mention of him, 
nor speak any more in his name,' at least in this place 
and in these times ; ' but his word was in my heart 
as a burning fire shut up in my bones.' Sometimes I 
have altered the time and given notice to the contrary, 
but it would not do, the people have pressed in upon 
me, frequent vacancies have occurred at the chapel, 
and poor souls have been famishing and crying out 
for a morsel of spiritual bread. I have put my credit, 
estate, and liberty in my hand to distribute to them 
the word of life, and God has secured me so that I have 
never suffered for private work at home, though for 
what has been public I have been plundered. Blessed 
be God for this door of hope in the valley of Achor : 
though I an7 civilly dead, yet ' I shall ziot die but live, 
and declare the works of the Lord.' ' This is the day 


the Lord hath made, we will rejoice and be glad in it.' 
O Lord, make this private brook to hold out till thou 
give plentiful rain upon the earth." This sacrifice of 
praise was accepted, and some of the above remarks 
were partly propheticah 

It is notorious that Charles was a papist, and vmder 
the pretence of a conciliatory disposition towards the 
persecuted and oppressed Nonconformists, he sought 
to encourage popery. Had he been the real friend of 
the ejected ministers, he would not have suffered them 
to have groaned ten long years under the grievous yoke 
of penal laws. By an exertion of arbitrary power, he 
was pleased to suspend the execution of the laws that 
had been passed against the Nonconformists, and issued 
a declaration, dated March 15th, 1672, in which it was 
acknowledged, " that there was very little fruit of all 
those forcible methods which had been used for reduc- 
ing erring and dissenting persons." This declaration 
was a merciful and unexpected answer of prayer, and 
was received as such by Mr. Heywood, who says : 
" March 18th, I went to keep a fast at J. Smith's near 
Great Horton. God wonderfully helped my heart 
both in prayer and preaching, but especially in prayer 
for the church, and for poor ministers, that (after a 
silence of almost ten years,) their mouths might be 
opened. Indeed it hath long been my earnest request, 
but then more enlargedly ; and behold a sudden re- 
turn ! On Tuesday two messengers came, one from 
Halifax and the other from Leeds, to bring me the joy- 
ful .tidings of liberty to Nonconformists to preach in 
public places. I confess it was welcome news, and al- 
most incredible ; but having heard the particular re- 
lation together with the reasons assigned, I was bound 
to credit it, and rejoice in God's mercy. Ezra vii. 
2,7, 28, came into my thoughts upon hearing the news; 


and with respect to the return of prayer, Isa. Ixv. 24, 
is very applicable. This day, March 20th, we had ap- 
pointed for a solemn fast, and God sent in this mercy 
beforehand to melt our hearts and encourage us in our 
waiting on him. Truly it was an affecting day ; God 
wonderfully drew out my heart, and I hope will give 
fvirther returns of prayer." This indulgence was very 
cautiously received by the Nonconformists, for they 
knew the king was not influenced by love to them, 
and some would not embrace the proffered liberty, lest 
they should be considered as sanctioning his arbitrary 
measures, and encouraging popery. Mr. H. was one 
of eighteen ministers who assembled at Manchester on 
the ] 9th of April, to consult what steps they should 
take, when they unanimously agreed to embrace the 
opportunity of usefulness thus afforded them. 

About this time, Mr. Heywood being under the 
necessity of removing from Coley Hall, where he had 
resided six years, he returned to the house at North- 
owram, where he had first become a housekeeper, and 
in which he continued till removed to that house which 
became his eternal home. The house with two crofts 
he purchased of B. Boys, of Halifax, for a hundred 
marks. As Mr. H. was an attentive observer of the 
ways of Providence, and as there were some remark- 
able circumstances attending this purchase and re- 
moval, he has left a minute narrative of the event, 
from which the following is an extract. " March 4th, 
1672, I paid for my house, and have it assured to me 
and mine as strongly as the law can make it. There 
are several observable providences interwoven with this 
affair. 1. This is the place in which I kept house im- 
mediately on my first marriage. Here my two sons 
drew their first breath, and in it my very dear mother 
breathed her last, ascending from thence to heaven. 


Here I have enjoyed much mercy, and experienced 
some affliction ; I prefer it above all the houses in the 
country. 2. It comes to me clear of every objection, 
none opposing. 3. It comes to me seasonably, when we 
knew not what course to take ; we had been expressing 
our gratitude to God, and this occurrence took place. 
A sense of mercy is acceptable to God, and obtains fur- 
ther mercy. 4. God hath in a surprising manner en- 
abled me to make this purchase. After I had been 
ejected from my living, and cashiered as a minister. 
After I had been exposed to persecvition, and had suf- 
fered the loss of property, the liberality of the friends 
of religion placed me in better pecuniary circumstances 
than those in which I had been before. 5. My man- 
ner of leaving it was strange. The year before the 
Cheshire-rising, being suspected, I was apprehended and 
prosecuted as a plotter, and as one disaffected to the state. 
Two young men, rash and heady, prevailed upon my 
landlady to remove me, having raised my rent twice 
before. I was turned out of the house in 1660, in 
hopes of driving me from the chapel ; but God found 
me another house. The house, after I left it, remained 
empty several years, and the eldest son of the landlady 
is in necessitous circumstances, while I am restored 
to the place again, in point of title, as my own. 6. It 
is a gracious providence that God should order a settle- 
ment for me and mine at Coley, to which my heart is 
attached more than to any place in the world, having 
been here above twenty-one years. God blessed my 
public labours when I lived in this house more than 
all the time before or since, and who knows what 
work he hath for me to do still ? However, I shall 
not be at the pleasure of persecuting landlords. When 
men curse, God blesses ; when men resist, God assists; 
when men withraw, God affords supply; the worse 


men are, the better God is. 7- As a presage of future 
mercy, on my return home, in the evening my son 
read Jer. xxxii, wherein methinks there are several 
particulars parallel to my case. Jeremiah was a j^ri- 
soner, to punish him for preaching, and to hinder him 
from preaching ; and though we are not all prisoners, 
yet that is the legal punishment for our preaching, 
and we are shut out from the discharge of our office. 
Hanameel came to Jeremiah when in prison to entreat 
him to buy the field ; so J. Priestley came again and 
again, urging me to buy the house, &c. The prophet 
also was to buy it for himself when in a persecuted 
state ; so though we are driven from the revenues of 
the church that we may live as we can, yet God pro- 
vides. Jeremiah knew at last it was the word of the 
Lord ; so I am abundantly satisfied this is God's will, 
after Iiaving earnestly by prayer committed the matter 
to him. The prophet delivered the evidences of the 
purchase to Barucli before witnesses, to be kept in an 
earthen vessel as a token that houses, fields, and vine- 
yards would be possessed again in that land ; and O ! 
that I could with good ground say, that this my pur- 
chase is a type of the restoration of ministers to their 
respective places. We have cause to fear some captivity. 
The Lord fit us for it, and make good his promises to 
our posterity. However, the prophet went to prayer 
for his people after he had made the purchase, and 
God answered him ; so, O my soul, unite this civil pur- 
chase with spiritual prayers, and in due time the Lord 
will answer. Amen." 

A few days before Mr. H. removed to his new habi- 
tation he received his license to preach publicly, and 
he immediately availed himself of the privilege.* 

* In the Northowram Register, in page ]6, there is a consider- 
able blank, and at the bottom of the page Mr. He j wood has 


" This time two years," observes Mr. H. " when the 
act against conventicles came out, so severely enforced 
by penalties, I remember having said, I was persuaded 
none would suffer by it, at least that £lOO. in fines 
would not be paid in all England. But I was mis- 
taken, for many suffered deeply, yea, God was pleased 
to punish my folly and security by a £lO. fine on my- 
self. This day, May 4th, I received my license, signed 
with the king's hand-writing : and accordingly I have 
made use of it, and preached on Rev. iii. 8, to a 
numerous company in Coley-hall, which is the last day 
I am likely to be here. Blessed be God for this mercy. 
On Wednesday May 8th, we removed, and God made 
us find favour in the eyes of our neighbours. That 
morning, both in my study and in the family, God 
sweetly enlarged my heart in prayer, and also at night 
in my new habitation at Northowram. It is rather 
strange that the declaration for liberty, and ray restora- 
tion to my former place of abode, after twelve years' 
absence, with a better title, should come both together. 
I am apt to think there is something from God in it 
more than ordinary. As God continued me in this 
house almost as long as my public liberty ; so the 
most part of my usefulness as a minister, was granted 
me when I lived here. O that God would restore all 
the rest with this house and license !" 

When reviewing this double mercy he exclaims, 
" Surely God hath demonstrated the truth of that 
word, ' The heart of the king is in the hand of the 
Lord.' We begged liberty, and God hath given it us, 

written : " This long interval of almost ten years, I was parted 
from the exercise of my ministerial function, by the Act of Uni- 
formity in August 1662. Restored again to my work by the 
King's Declaration, March 12th, 1672, to ministerial employment 
in my own house." 


but the manner is beyond our contrivance ; that the 
laws should still remain in force, and yet we are pre- 
served by authority ! Our case is like that of the Jews 
in Esther's days, for though our adversaries gnash 
their teeth, they cannot prevent our liberty. O what 
cannot God do ! It is true, there is cause of grief that 
Papists and Atheists enjoy so much liberty, but we 
have opportunity of resistance ; we have liberty to do 
good, as they have to do hurt ; we have as much leave 
to serve God as they have to sin against him. O that 
we may have hearts to improve our opportunity in 
God's way and to his glory ! May the Lord compensate 
for the time that has been lost these ten years, that the 
promise in Joel ii. 25 — 27, may be accomplished, " I 
will restore to j^ou the years that the locust hath 
eaten, &c.' God hath provided a very convenient and 
spacious meeting place in my new habitation. O that 
it may be said, ' this and that man were born there !' 
The Lord blessed the house of Obed-edom, and all 
that pertained to him because of the ark of God. The 
ark is at present brought under my roof by public 
authority, and now I wait for a blessing on my soul, 
my family, and the church in my house. Who am I 
that I should have a house to live in, when many bet- 
ter than I, have ' wandered about in sheep-skins and 
goat-skins ; being destitute, afflicted, tormented : of 
whom the world was not worthy ?' Who am I that I 
should have a house of my own, when my Lord Jesus, 
the Lord of life and glory, when on earth, had not 
where to lay his head ? O that I could set as little 
value on worldly things as my dear Saviour did ! O 
that my heart may be in my heavenly home, and seek 
a better country, a firmer house, and a city which hath 
foundations, whose builder and maker is God ! God 
forbid ! that I should now begin to build tabernacles on 


earth ; rather may my soul breathe after that * house 
not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.' Lord, 
help me to use this house for thee and thy friends, in 
acts of piety to thee, and hospitality towards the mem- 
bers of the Lord Jesus Christ." This freedom of wor- 
ship after so long restraint, was like a resurrection to 
the oppressed Nonconformists. We who live in these 
days of religious liberty can form but an imperfect 
idea of the value our forefathers set on this indulgence: 
it was to them " a little reviving in their bondage," 
and " the word of the Lord was precious in those 
days." Multitudes flocked to seek spiritual blessings, 
" and the power of the Lord was present to heal them.'* 
Shortly after Mr. H. went to his new habitation, and 
made use of his license, such numbers attended that 
many sometimes went away, not being able to press 
into the house, nor come within the sound of the 
preacher's voice. 

Mr. Heywood having this favourable opportunity, 
and being convinced of the propriety of establishing 
church order, formed the pious part of his congrega- 
tion into a regular society, to whom he statedly admi- 
nistered the gospel ordinances. This important work 
was conducted in the most solemn manner, and with 
fervent prayer. The following are copies of the cove- 
nant engagements into which he and the people enter- 
ed on this occasion : — 

" I, Oliver Heywood, in the county of York, minis- 
ter of the gospel, having spent above twenty years in 
the Lord's work, amongst the inhabitants of Coley 
chapelry, having been suspended ten years from the 
public exercise of my ministry, and now at last restor- 
ed, upon the earnest prayers of the church, to the dis- 
charge of my pastoral work in my own house, by his 
Majesty's declaration and licence, do willingly and 


thankfully accept of this open liberty of my ministry, 
lamenting my former neglects, justifying the Lord in 
the evil he hath brought upon us, begging reconcilia- 
tion and a better heart to do God's work more faith- 
fully, imploring his blessing for success, and now re- 
solving, by the assistance of God's grace, to give up 
myself to the Lord's work among this people, in study- 
ing the scriptures, preaching the word in season and 
out of season, praying with and for them, watching 
over them, instructing, admonishing, and exhorting 
them publicly and privately, endeavouring to convert 
sinners and to confirm, quicken, and comfort saints, — 
to administer baptism and the Lord's supper, and ex- 
ercise discipline according to the rules of the gospel, so 
far as I am convinced from the word, — to set before 
the people a holy example, resolving, by the grace of 
God, to suffer affliction and persecution with them, if 
God call me to it, as a faithful soldier of Christ and a 
pastor of souls, that at last I may give up my account 
with joy, being pure from the blood of all men : so 
promiseth the unworthy servant of Christ, 

" Help, Lord." OLIVER HEYWOOD." 

The church covenant into which the persons then en- 
tered, who constituted this christian society, is as fol- 
lows : — 

" We, the inhabitants of Coley chapelry and others, 
being professors of the christian religion, do willingly 
and heartily subscribe to the doctrine of the gospel 
contained in the scriptures of truth, and solemnly pro- 
fess our faith in God the Father, the Creator of all 
things ; in Jesus Christ the Son of God, the Redeemer 
of God's elect ; and in the Holy Ghost, the sanctifier 
and comforter of the faithful; and do give up ourselves 
to the Lord in covenant, according to the terms of the 


gospel, to be ruled by his will revealed in the bible, ac- 
knowledging the need we have of the ministry of the 
word and the seals of the covenant for our edification : — 
we do still own Mr. Oliver Heywood, whom God hath 
wonderfully restored to the exercise of his ministry 
amongst us, as our rightful pastor, formerly chosen by 
us ; and we shall be willing, by the assistance of God's 
grace, to believe and practise what truths and duties 
he shall make manifest to us to be the mind of God, 
desirous to maintain communion with God and one 
another in his holy worship, and to discharge what 
duties he requires of us in his word, as members of one 
body and as occasion shall offer : — we resolve, by divine 
assistance, to walk in our places as becomes the gospel, 
in all good conscience toward God, one another, and 
all men : — and we purpose to do this to the end of our 
days, against all opposition from the persecutions and 
allurements of the world, the temptations of Satan, 
and the corruptions of our own wicked hearts, in order 
to the glory of God and our eternal salvation." 

Every individual member of this society afterwards 
made the following declaration : 

" I do heartily take this one God for my only God 
and my chief good ; and this Jesus Christ for my only 
Lord, Redeemer, and Saviour ; and this Holy Spirit 
for my Sanctifier ; and the doctrine revealed by Jesus 
Christ, and sealed by his miracles, and now contained 
in the holy scriptures, I do take for the law of God 
and the rule of my faith and life : and repenting un- 
feignedly of my sins, I do resolve, through the grace 
of God, sincerely to obey him, both in piety towards 
God, righteousness towards men, and special love to 
the saints, and communion with them, against all temp- 
tations of the devil, the world, and the flesh : this I 
resolve to do, even to the end of my life. I do also 


consent to be a member of the particular church at 
Northowram, whereof Mr. O. Heywood is teacher and 
overseer, and to submit to his teaching, his ministerial 
guidance and oversight, according to God's word : to 
hold communion with that church in the public wor- 
ship of God, and to submit to the brotherly admonition 
of fellow-members, that so we may be built up in 
knowledge and holiness, and may the better maintain 
our obedience to Christ, promote the welfare of this 
society, and hereby the more please and glorify God." 

These mutual engagements were entered into by 
Mr. H. and his people, June 12th, 1673, when the or- 
dinance of the Lord's supper was first administered to 
this dissenting church at Northowram, and on which 
occasion, Mr. H. thus writes: "Though my heart was 
out of order in preparation work, yet in the exercises 
of that day I was much melted and carried out towards 
God. O it was a delightful day ! God united our 
spirits, so that afterwards we made a solemn profes- 
sion of our faith, and entered into an engagement to 
be the Lord's. The people renewed their owning me 
to be their pastor, and I solemnly owned them in 
that relation, to discharge all ministerial duties to 
them. O that we may perform what we promised ." 

This christian church was formed on Presbyterian 
principles ; but Mr. Heywood's liberality of senti- 
ment being known, several persons who had formerly 
been members of the Congregational church at Sower- 
by,* previously under the pastoral care of Mr. Root, re- 

* After Dr. Fawcett, in his Life of Tllr. Heywood, has said that 
Mr. Robert Tiilotson was a member of the congregational church 
at Sowerby, and that he was the father of the celebrated archbishop 
Tiilotson, who was born at Haugh-End in the township of Sower- 
by and parish of Halifax, he relates the following anecdote : — 

" Mr. Robert Tiilotson went up to London, on a visit to his son, 
when he was Dean of Canterbury, and being in the dress of a 

VOL. I. N 


quested leave to unite with the church at Northowram. 
*' June 18th," says Mr. H. "there was a solemn meet- 
plain countryman, -vvas insulted by one of the Dean's servants, for 
inquiring if John Tillotson was at home. His person, however, 
being described to the Dean, he immediately exclaimed, * It is my 
worthy father,' and running to the door to receive him, he fell down 
upon his knees in the presence of his servants, to ask his father's 
blessing." He also adds, " The following epistle from Mr. Tillot- 
son to IMr. Root has been preserved, which being literally copied, 
will no doubt gratify the curious reader : 

* For liis much respect, friend Mr. Roote, att Sorbey in Yorke- 
shire, are these. 

' Sir, 

' To excuse the slownes and infrequency of writeing, is 
growne a thing soe complementall and common in the frontispeece 
of every letter, that I have made choice rather to put myselfe 
upon your candor to frame an excuse for mee, than goe about 
myselfe to do it. 

' I cannot but thankefully acknowledge my engagements to you 
for your kindnes showne to mee, both when I was in the country, 
and at other times ; I shall not here let my pen run out into com- 
plementall lines, gratitude (and that as much as may be) being all 
that I desire to expresse. 

' As for our university affayres, things are as they was before I 
came into the country, only wee have lesse hopes of procuring 
IMr. Thomas Goodwin for our IMaster then we then liad. Wee 
are in expectation of the Visitors every day, but what will be done 
at their comming wee cannot guesse. 

' The engagement is either comming downe hither, or (as I 
heare) already come, to which how soone wee may bee called 
upon to subscribe, we knowe not; as for my selfe I do not (at 
present) at all scruple the taking of it ; yet because I dare not 
confide too much to my owne judgement, or apprehension of 
things, and because matters of such serious consequence require 
no little caution and consideration, therefore I shall desire you (as 
soone as with convenience you can) to returne mee your opinion 
of it in two or three lines. 

' JMr. Rich. Holbrooke desired mee to present his respects to 
you and your wife, to whom alsoe I desire you to present my best 
respects, as alsoe to your son, Joh. Hopkinson, and his wife. Noe 
more, but your prayers for him Avho remaines. 

Yours, whilst 

Clare-Hall, Dec. 6, IGiO. JOH. TILLOTSON.' 


ing at my house between our brethren of the Congre- 
gational persuasion and us. Several of Mr. Root's 
church came and expressed their desire to join with us 
in all ordinances.* We declared plainly the state of 
both societies, our present conduct, and the principles 
on which we acted ; and, though our principles of 
church government were diiferent, we concurred in our 
proceedings in the main, and both parties were to over- 
look matters of difference. On further debate and 
enumeration of our members, they fully acquiesced in 
my fidelity as to the admission of our church members, 
and were willing to communicate with them as they 
stood, without demanding any other satisfaction con- 
cerning them ; we also owned them, and were willing 
to receive them to all ordinances. A special season 
was then appointed for communicating together at the 
Lord's supper, and both parties went away abundantly 
satisfied. This is the special work of God, for men's 
spirits are greatly altered. Captain Hodgson earnestly 
promoted this union. Blessed be God. Zeph. iii. 9« 
Jer. h 5. Phil. iii. 15." \ 

* Ml' Henry Root, Sen. of Blagd. Col. Camb. travelled mucf* 
into foreign parts in his early life. Afterwards he became a 
preacher at Halifax church, and collected a congregational society 
at Sowetby chapel, in 1645. He continued preaching at this 
place half a year after Bartholomew's day, but was afterwards 
treated with great severity. He died Oct. 1069, aged about 80. 

t The names of the persons that united with the church at 
Korthowram on this occasion are the following, concerning whom 
Mr. H. has in some instances made observations respecting their 
characters : — 

1. Mr. Joshua Horton, a useful man. He died April 7th, 1679, 
aged 60. — 2. JMrs. Martha Horton, wife of the above. She died 
at her son's house at Chaderton, and was buried at Sowerby, July 
27, 1694.— 3. Mr. John Greenwood. — 4. Mrs. Greenwood, wife 
of the above. She died at Sowerby, and was buried Nov. 29, 
1677 — 5. Mr. Richard Biackett. He was a pious man and a 

N 2 


The first tiine this truly catholic church manifested 
their mutual affection for the Redeemer in celebrating 
the christian passover, was July 14th, 1672, when 
about sixty communicants of this infant church were 
present. " The day before," says Mr. H. " God helped 
me exceedingly to plead with him for conversion work, 
and for the souls of adversaries. O what a melting 
season it was to me ! On the Lord's day we had that 
sweet and solemn ordinance of the Lord's supper, after 
the rest of the people were gone ; and though I cannot 
but say God helped me in preaching and prayer all 
day, yet I did not find so much of the divine presence 
in that sealing ordinance as I have sometimes done : 
what the reason was I know not, but desire to inquire. 
Perhaps the Lord saw that I trusted too much to my 
preparation ; or, that I entertained proud, vain, and 
self-conceited thoughts of the numerous increase of our 
society, and the union of another church ; or, perhaps 
the people had too high expectations from me, which 
God was determined to disappoint : fain would I know 
the cause, that I may be humbled. It is true, God 
helped me with suitable and abundant expressions ; 
but I was conscious of vain distracting thoughts. The 

solid Christian, and often joined with us. He died near Halifax, 
and was buried in Holdsworth's Works, Nov. 8, 1677) aged 73. — 6. 
Mrs. Root, widow of Mr. Root. — 7- Josiah Stansfield. — 8. IMartha 
Stansfield, his wife. — 9. Mr. John Hodgson. — 10. I\Irs. Sarah 
Hodgson. — 11. John Learoyd. He was formerly a member with 
lis, but upon discontent went to Mr. Root, but returned again and 
continued with us till his death, IMarch 28, 1G76. He left good 
evidences of his safe condition. — 12. William Hurd. He also 

had been with us, but now returned, and again left us in 1682 

13. John Smith was an aged Christian, one of Sir. CoUier's con- 
verts. I discoursed with him on his death-bed, and hope he was 
a good man. He v.ent to his rest 1673. — 14. Mary Smith, wife 

of the above. She also is gone to her long home 15. Mrs. Ellen 

Drake, a widow living at the Swan Inn, Halifax. 


Lord's will be done ; only as it is sin in me, so it is 
matter of humiliation." 

The labours of Mr. H. at this time were very abun- 
dant, his ministry was numerously attended, and was 
crowned with much success. On one Lord's day this 
summer, he mentions : " There was a multitude of 
people in the forenoon, and God graciously affected my 
heart in prayer. In the afternoon the numbers were 
so increased that many were obliged to stand out of 
doors ; and though there came a heavy shower, and 
the people were very wet, yet they continued at the 
window. The rooms were excessively crowded, so that 
the people trod one upon another. We want room 
exceedingly." Besides his stated ministrations to the 
congregation that assembled at his own house, he em- 
braced every opportunity of preaching elsewhere, both 
in the neighbourhood of Coley, and in distant places, 
for which he obtained various licenses. The following 
is a literal copy of the license he procured for preach- 
ing at John Butterworth's in ^Varley :* 

(Seal.) CHARLES R 

Chari.es by the Grace of God, King of England, 
Scotland, France, and Ireland, Defender of the Faith, 
&c. To all Mayors, Baylifls, Constables, and other 
Oui' Officers and Ministers, Civil and Military, whom 
it may concern. Greeting. In pursuance of Our De- 
claration of the 15th of March, 167|. We do hereby 
permit and license Olever Hey wood of y^ Presbyterien 
Perswation to be a Teacher of the Congregation allowed 
by Us in a Roome or Roomes in the house of John 
Butterworth in ye parish of Hallifax in y^ County of 
Yorke for the Use of such as do not conform to the 

* A Fac-simile of the Original will be found prefixed to the 
second volume. 


Church of England, who are of the Perswasion com- 
monly called Presbyterien — With further license and 
permission to him the said Oliver Heywood to teach 
in any other place licensed and allowed by Us, accord- 
ing to Our said Declaration. Given at Our Court at 
Whitehall, the 25th day of July — in the 24th year of 
Our Reign, 1672. 

By His Majesties Command. 


Faint as the hope was, that the liberty enjoyed by 
the Nonconformists at this time would be of long con- 
tinuance, there were several young men in, various 
places, whose hearts were so much set on the work of 
the ministry, that they embraced the earliest oppor- 
tunity of entering the Lord's vineyard by the solemn 
rite of ordination. Such conduct under present cir- 
cumstances was a pleasing evidence of their faith and 
zeal, and a sacred pledge to the ejected fathers, that 
the cause of the Redeemer would be maintained in the 
v/orld, when they had entered the joy of their Lord. 
At the close of this summer we find Mr. H. attending 
one of these pleasing solemnities. " Oct. 28th, Mr. 
Dawson and I went into Lancashire. The day after 
according to appointment we kept a private fast on an 
extraordinary occasion, in my cousin Eaton's study in 
Deansgate, Manchester.* It v/as for ordaining and set- 
ting apart to the work of the ministry, Mr. Jos, Daw- 

* ]\Ir. Eaton was ejected from Walton in Lancashire in 1660. 
Afterwards he became chaplain to Lord Delamere, and when the 
liberties of the Dissenters were established by law, he preached 
at Stand near Manchester. He died in Aug. 1710, aged 54. INIr. 
Matt. Henry mentions his death, and observes, that in him the 
church of God lost a person of great learning and integrity ; tliat 
he was very much superior to most of his brethren ; but that he 
was a moot humble, condescending, and alTcctionaic frieiid. 


son, Mr. Sam. Angier, and Mr. John Jollie. Cousin 
Eaton began with prayer, and Mr. Finch followed.* 
Then I went to prayer, wherein my heart was exceed- 
ingly affected, confessing ministerial sins, and begging 
mercy for the persons to be ordained, ourselves, and 
children devoted to God. My father Angier required 
Mr. Dawson to make a confession of his faith, and 
asked him the usual questions ; after which he prayed 
over him with imposition of hands. Mr. Newcome 
did the same to my cousin Angier ;f and Mr. Eaton 
to Mr. Jollie. Then Mr. Newcome spoke from 1 Tim, 
iv. 12, and gave them a solemn charge ; he afterwards 
prayed and pronounced the blessing. It was a sweet 
and solemn day ; a hopeful budding of Aaron's rod 
after a sharp winter. Blessed be the Lord." 

The zeal of the pious Nonconformists in this respite 
from suffering, could not fail to excite the rage and 
enmity of their opponents, who gnashed with their 
teeth, and sought every possible opportunity to trouble 
and vex those, they could not now openly persecute. 
Dr. Hook, vicar of Halifax, had frequently manifested 
a violent spirit of hostility against Mr. Heywood, and 
his disposition did not alter with time or change of 
circumstances. " He desired," says Mr. H. " to have 
a sight of my licenses, and I sent them by J. Priestley. 
He made excuses and endeavoured to pick a quarrel ; 

* Mr. Finch on his ejectment retired to Warrington^ and after- 
wards to Manchester, which not being a corporation was a com- 
mon resort for many ejected ministers. In 1672 he preached at 
Birch chapel, and continued his labours in that neighbourhood till 
his sickness which terminated in death, Nov. 13th, 1704, in the 
72nd year of his age. 

t JMr. Newconae was ejected from the Collegiate church at Man- 
chester by the Bartholomew act. He was a man of the most emi- 
nent character and abilities. Mr. Henry calls him, the prince of 
preachers. See his life and sermons in Select Nonconformists' 


but seeing that would do no good, he said, tell Mr. 
Hey wood, I want my dues for nine or ten years. He 
said also, I had nothing to do with preaching; but 
if I would preach I might go abroad where there was 
work, for there was no need here. He charged us 
with setting up altar against altar, making separations, 
and rendering their preaching contemptible. He told 
many egregious falsehoods concerning us, saying, we 
would not hear him, or if we did, it was to catch his 
words ; he said also that in my meeting place some 
walked, others talked, and some slept, &c. May the 
Lord rebuke this accuser of the brethren." Many in- 
stances are noticed of the vicar's persecuting spirit, 
among which is the following : — " Mr. Horton* having 
erected a meeting-place at Sowerby,and having procured 
a license, desired me to begin a weekly lecture on Tues- 
day, May 6th, 1673, which accordingly I did. He 
purposed obtaining the help of some other neighbour- 
ing ministers. I preached on Psal. Ixxxvi. 17, 'Show 
me a token for good.' The Lord affected many hearts, 
which I considered as a token for good ; but Satan is 
always busy when any good work is carrying on. Dr. 
Hook was so much offended, that on the Saturday fol- 
lowing he sent Mr. Horton the following letter : — 

Sir, I hoped to have met you with your minister on 
IVednesday at our church, and afterwards with your 
brethren the Feoffees of I\Ir. Nathaniel Waterhouse at 
the Lecturer's ; but I suppose you were so full with 
your four hours' exercise at the dedication of your new 
built cottage (as you formerly called it,) now turned 
into a synagogue, that you could not digest the prayers 

* ]\Ir. Horton was formerly one of Mr. Root's church at Sower- 
by, but had lately joined the church at Northowrara. ]Mr. Hey- 
>vood in the Northowram Register speaks of him " as a pious man, 
a justice of the peace, who had i,^1000 a year." 


of our church, and a sermon there the next day. Had 
I seen you then, or foreseen your designed meeting, I 
shoukl have been so bold, (as my pastoral duty binds 
me,) to liav« asked your authority. To that end I in- 
tended to wait on you at your inn to-day, but your 
being gone home, I have sent after you this messenger 
on the same errand. If you have authority I desire 
you to show it, and that before the next meeting, which 
I hear is to be on Tuesday next ; and then I have done : 
but if you have not, I require you to desist. Your act, 
however you judge it, is a sin, a scandal, a schism, a 
danger, and so you will find, perhaps sooner than you 
expect. If you should please in thankfulness to God, 
who hath increased your estate, to express your pious 
charity, you may do it more piously in making an 
addition to the chapel at Sowerby. I give you this 
timely intimation and caution in christian charity^ and 
expect your present answer.' 

" This honest gentleman, being a member of our 
society, and the Lord's supper being administered the 
day after, at night, when all was done, he read this 
letter, and begged our advice. We thought it was best 
to show his license to Justice Farrer, and send an an- 
swer which he had written; it was indeed a very 
sober reply to so angry a letter. How it will take, 
God knows, but certairdy there is little reason to find 
fault with his slighting public ordinances, for he at- 
tends daily at Sowerby, except when he comes to us 
about once a month ; and he is not behind in his con- 
tribution, for he gives Mr. Booker, the minister there, 
£8. a-year, besides ten shillings a sermon to the mi- 
nisters who preach the lecture at his meeting-place. 
Blessed be God that hath raised up any to consult and 
promote the welfare of souls in this evil time. May 
the good hand of our God be upon us for good, that 


the work may not cease. We wait on God for the 
result of this affair." 

" Nov. 10th, 1673. There came an apparitor from 
York, and another from Halifax, and apprehended two 
of our members upon a writ de excommunicato ca- 
piendo. The occasion whereof was their refusing to 
take the church-warden's oath, though they faithfully 
served the office. When they were excommunicated 
(as it is called) they consulted with us what to do. 
Fearing this capias, we desired them to send to York 
and get it off, if a little money would do it ; but our 
godly vicar had put in a bar in the way, so that they 
are now taken to York castle ; God Almighty go with 
them. We had a solemn day of prayer at W. Clay's 
the day on which they were taken, and so sent them 
away with prayer." Dr. Hook's opposition against 
Mr. Heywood and his friends did not excite a spirit of 
revenge, but called forth the most difficult christian 
grace into exercise — that of forgiving injuries. Mr. 
Heywood has left the following note in his diary : 
*' God helped me to wrestle in prayer with some faith 
and tears, particularly for Dr. Hook, that God would 
liumble his heart, pardon his sin, and make use of hira 
for the good of sinners." 

The disposition manifested by the vicar of Halifax 
was not peculiar to him, there were many in the country 
who embraced every opportunity of perplexing the 
Nonconformists, and disturbing their religious as- 
semblies. Mr. H. records the following instance : — 
"Jan. 2nd, 1673,1 joined with Mr. Richardson* in 

* IMr. Richardson was ejected from Kirk-Heaton, after which 
he retired to his own house at Lassel-hall. Here, besides preach- 
ing on the Lord's days, he kept up a monthly lecture, in which he 
was assisted by several of his neighbouring brethren. Afterwards 
he went to Liverpool, and preached alternately at that place and 
Toxteth-park. His preaching was accurate, plain, and popular. 


an exercise at Lassell-hall. Abundance of people came, 
and when Mr. R. was preaching, Sir John Kay's ser- 
vant pressed through the crowd, and inquired if he had 
a license to preach there. Mr. R. answered him 
smartly and went on, and the man withdrew. I con- 
fess I was somewhat affrighted at the thought of his 
coming when I should be preaching. When Mr. R. 
had finished I succeeded, and while I was preaching 
the man came again and demanded if we had licenses. 
Mr. R. sharply said, What authority have you to in- 
quire ? He replied, His master Sir J. Kay had sent 
him. He then commanded us both in the king's name 
to go with him ; and, having produced his warrant, I 
gave him mild words, and promised to go when we had 
done oui' work. He stood by, and I went on with 
my sermon, God graciously helping me. When we 
had finished we went with him and two of Sir John's 
liverymen. When we entered the hall, we found many 
waiting men, and some playing at cards at the table. 
At last Sir John came, and asked us if we had any li- 
censes, saying, His majesty hath graciously encouraged 
conformists, and indulged his other subjects that pre- 
tend conscience in not conforming ; but his princely 
clemency had been abused in many places ; therefore 
he hath sent us express orders to inquire after persons' 
licenses. We told him we had a license for the place 
with us, but licenses for our persons were at home. 
He demanded a sight of what we had, and so far he 
was satisfied ; but required a sight of the others also. 
We requested time, and he gave us till Saturday. Thus 
God's gracious providence hath wrought for us, so that 
we can look v/ith confidence upon authority, having 

and his knowledge of the scriptures so great, that he was able to 
analyze and expound a chapter, on a sadden call in the families he 
visited. He died in Dec. 1698, aged about 80. 


authority for what we do ; blessed be God. I cannot 
but observe how hostile the devil is against preaching, 
when he promotes feasting, drinking, and revelling." 

When Mr. PI ey wood's two sons were about seven- 
teen years of age, and had received that instruction 
which the best schools in the neighbourhood afforded, 
their father resolved on sending them to Mr. Frank- 
land in Westmoreland, who may be considered as the 
first tutor of the earliest dissenting academy. The 
anxious concern Mr. H. experienced on this occasion, 
will appear from the solemn manner in which he now 
afresh devoted them to the service of God. " My sons 
being to go abroad for learning next week, I took them 
with me," he says, " to three private fasts this week ; 
and Thursday, May 15th, 1673, was such a day as we 
have seldom had. I purposely appointed to seek God this 
day on their behalf, and he wonderfully helped all his 
servants to plead for them. About the middle of the 
day I called them both forth, before the company, and 
asked them several questions, as to what calling they 
chose ? With tears they both answered, the ministry. 
I asked them, for what end ? and told them they might 
suffer persecution, and must not dream of honour there- 
in, or of living like gentlemen. They replied, their 
oniy end was to glorify God and win souls. I marked 
John's words, he said, he desired to do God more ser- 
vice than any of his ancestors. I asked them, what 
they desired Mr. Dawson and the rest of God's servants 
should pray for, on their behalf ? Eliezer spoke first, 
and said, that God would give them grace and gifts, 
forgive their sins of childhood, and loss of time, make 
them studious, and keep them from temptation and 
sinful company. John's answer was much of the same 
nature. They both wej)t exceedingly, and so did the 
whole company. Then I solemnly gave them up to 


God in his work. Those that went to prayer read also 
a portion of scripture. W. B. read 1 8am. i. on dedi- 
cating Samuel to God. Mr. Dawson read Gen. xxviii. 
respecting Isaac sending away his son Jacob. R. R. 
read Prov. iii, on getting and prizing wisdom. Mr. 
Hodgson Gen. xlviii. from 8th verse to the end. When 
he came to those words, ' The angel which redeemed 
me from all evil, bless the lads,' the tears stopped him 
and he made a solemn pause ; and we all wept. I read 
and briefly expounded 1 Chron. xxviii. containing 
David's charge to Solomon about building the temple. 
God helped us all in prayer. O what a flood of tears ! 
What pleadings with God ! I can scarcely remember 
the like. Blessed be God ; it is a token for good. I 
wait to hear what God will speak to all these things ; 
surely he will speak peace. O that I and mine may 
not return to folly. Ebenezer !" 

A minister whose labours are 'confined generally or 
almost constantly within the sphere occupied by the 
members of a single congregation, may often remain 
long a stranger to the success of his efforts to promote 
the spiritual and eternal welfare of men. Some in- 
stances of the happy result of his faithful services may 
at times come to his knowledge, which encourage him 
to persevere in the unwearied discharge of his mini- 
sterial duties ; while he waits for that period emphati- 
cally styled the day of the Lord Jesus, which will re- 
veal the extent of his usefulness. But what may we 
suppose would be the highly important consequences 
of Mr. Heywood's zealous and incessant exertions, 
which were not limited to a narrow sphere ? conse- 
quences which must have been very imperfectly known 
to him in this world, where we see but through a glass 
darkly ? As far as twenty miles from his residence in 
every direction (and the circle might be widened in 


perfect accordance with truth,) he Jike his divine 
Master went about indefatigably doing good. In some 
cases he might ascertain the fruit of his labour, but 
that we have reason to conclude would be far short of 
the real amount. About the time when Mr. Heywood 
finished his itinerant services, or not long after, places 
of worshijj were erected by the Nonconformists, not 
only at Leeds, Bradford, Halifax, and^Vakefield, prin- 
cipal towns in the West Riding of Yorkshire, but also 
dissenting chapels were built in the adjacent villages, 
at Warley, Sowerby, Eastwood, Mixenden, Kipping, 
Bingley, Idle, Pudsey, Cleckheaton, Heckraondwike, 
Topcliff, and Hopton, besides the chapel at North- 
owram, and another at Morley venerable for its anti- 
quity, which at that period fell into the hands of dis- 
senters. Within the district in which those towns 
and villages are situated, Mr. H. for many years as 
often as he had opportunity, and when trying circum- 
stances permitted him, distributed to thousands the 
bread of life, moved with compassion for them in their 
deplorable circumstances, when suffering not from a 
famine preying upon the body, but a famine which 
threatened the life of the soul : and there can be no 
doubt of his labours having contributed greatly to the 
formation of dissenting societies, at the places just 
now enumerated. These observations have been sug- 
gested by the following extract : — 

" June 23, 1673. Some friends were with me from 
about Woodkirk, when J. Hoppindale told me (as he 
expressed himself) for my encovu'agement, that most 
of the persons who had been admitted into Mr. Mar- 
shall's* church of late years, when delivering then' 

* ]Mr. Christoplier IMarshall was a congregationalist ; a good 
scholar, of considerable abilities, and of a serious spirit, but in- 
clined to melancholy, on account of many personal and domestic 


experience, have signified that the first work of grace 
in their souls was through my ministry in these sad 
and silencing times. Indeed I am willing to believe, 
that God drew me forward to preach abroad at 
Hunslet, Bramley, Farsley, Pudsey, Morley, and Idle, 
in public, when multitudes of people flocked together 
to hear, and were affected ; at a time when none did 
or durst venture on the important work of preaching 
the gospel ; also in private houses in various places. 
My heart was wonderfully impressed and enlarged in 
those times, and I now hear of some fruit ; I hope 
there is more not yet discovered. Blessed, blessed be 
my God !" 

Mr. Heywood, during this period of liberty, was ac- 
tively employed in public labours ; but the following 
occasional covenants prove that, while he paid atten- 
tion to the cause of Zion in general, he did not neglect 
the progress of vital religion in his own soul. 
*' Having the opportunity of secresy, and having to 
dispense and partake of the Lord's supper to-morrow, 
I have this afternoon, Feb. 1, 1673, been setting 
myself to examine my conscience, renew my faith and 
repentance, and pour out my soul before God. Having 
experienced some degree of enlargement, I am pressed 
in spirit to lift up my hand to the Most High, and 
bind myself to the Lord in a further vow of self-dedi- 
cation to him." 

" Infinite Jehovah ! It is no small encouragement to 
this poor, sinful creature, that I live under a covenant 

afflictions. Being ejected from Woodkirk, in 1662, he lived pri- 
vately near his people in a house of his own. Upon the passing 
of the Five-mile Act, he went to live at Horbury, but returned 
and preached privately. In 1672, he preached at Topcliff-hall. 
He was accused and imprisoned on account of a plot, with several 
of his brethren ; but they came off clear, nMhing being proved 
against them.~-^Noncoiiformis^s' Memorial, vol. 3, page 455. 


of grace, and not of works, wherein, though I sin, as 
thou knowest, to the grief of my heart, repentance is 
not unavailable, nor the sentence irreversible ; but an 
appeal is admitted from the bench of justice to the 
throne of grace, from the law to the gospel, from 
Moses to Christ ; God himself, even thou, my Father, 
haying provided a plank after shipwreck, and a city of 
refuge to secure my poor, trembling soul : according 
to this blessed covenant, I return to thee this day after 
my backslidings. It grieves me that I have grieved 
thy Spirit by deadness, distraction, pride, unbelief, 
worldliness, hyj^ocrisy, and formality. I here pros- 
trate myself at thy footstool, acknowledging thy jus- 
tice, if thou condemn me, adoring thy free grace, if 
thou receive me; and who knows but God will accept. 
O that ever it should enter thy heart to send thy Son 
to redeem sinners ! O that overflowing love should 
provide a surety to pay the debt of bankrupts ! I 
accept it. Lord, with a hearty welcome ; I acquiesce 
in this thy way, and will seek for no other to secure 
my precious soul. My soul embraceth a dear Saviour 
in the arms of my faith. Welcome Christ with his 
yoke ! Welcome the cross of Christ ! O that my soul 
may come to Christ aright ! I am willing to part 
with the world, sensual gratifications, and all for 
Christ, and to give up myself to Christ. I have no 
other Saviour, no other Sovereign ; the Lord my Righ- 
teousness is the Lord my Judge ; the Lord my King 
will save me. Dear Lord Jesus ! thou art my hope, 
my help, my light, and life ; thy name is as ointment 
poured forth, therefore my soul loveth thee, my heart 
goeth after thee ; I have none in heaven or earth be- 
sides thee ; thou art the Sun of righteousness, thy 
grace alone heals me, thy beams enlighten me, thy 
rays refresh me ; if thou withdrawest, my spirit 


faints. Whom should I admire but thee ? To whom 
should I give up myself but unto thee ? Here I am. 
Lord, devoted to thy fear, thy servant, the son of thine 
handmaid, thou hast loosed my bonds. My person, 
and all I have are thine ; yea, I look upon it as my 
greatest privilege to be the Lord's devoted servant. 
Lord, if thou hast given this worthless worm any gifts, 
I will not use them to get myself credit, but thee glory. 
No matter what men think or speak of me, so that 
they have exalted thoughts of God. Let me disappear, 
that the eyes of men may be fixed on the Lord. My 
house, and goods, and all I have, are at thy service ; 
I proclaim liberty to thee to do with all I have what 
seemeth good to thee. If I may glorify thee better 
without than with these things, I am as willing to be 
deprived of them as ever I was to receive them. My 
wife, children, and all my comforts, are more thine 
than mine. I am but a steward, these are borrowed, 
and when my Master calls, I will freely let all go for 
thy sake and pleasure. I despise all things in compa- 
rison of, or competition with, my dear Lord Jesus. 
What is this world to the pearl of great price, the 
Mediator of the new covenant ? My soul even scorns 
and hates these poor inconsiderable things, that I may 
win Christ and be found in him. ' I have sworn, and 
I will perform it, that I will keep thy righteous judg- 
ments.' I have renewed my covenant, taken the 
bounty money, given my hand, and, through grace, 
my soul desires to stand to it, to be the Lord's, and 
only his. I am more the Lord's than my own. O 
that I could be more for God than for myself! I 
must, and, through grace, will take more pains in my 
study, be more at the throne of grace, and preach with 
vol.. I. , o 


more compassion for poor souls. Lord, say, Amen; 
and give success to 

*' Thy worthless servant, 


Begun, Feb. \st, | 
Ended, Feb. 3rd, j-^*^'^' 

The following" covenant engagement was entered 
into, Dec. 8th, 1673, at a time, when Mr. Hey wood 
.suspected the increase and prevalence of Popery in 
this country, and while it expresses his firm persua- 
sion of the truth of the gospel, shows his willingness 
to endure any degree of persecution to which the pro- 
fession of liis faith might expose him. 

" My glorious and gracious Sovereign ! My parents 
presented me to thee in baptism in infancy, wherein I 
was enlisted as thy soldier, to fight under the banner 
of the Captain of my salvation, against Satan, the 
world, and the flesh. When I came to years of dis- 
cretion, and was under convictions, which were, I 
hope, by thy Holy Spirit, I again personally renewed 
that covenant by a solemn self-resignation to the Lord,. 
giving my hand, and therein I hope my heart, to that 
good God who gave his Son for me, and hath given 
himself, his Son, and Spirit to me ; and I never had 
cause to repent of this engagement. The more I have 
tasted the Lord's goodness, the more have I been con- 
firmed in my choice ; and the more sincerely I have 
waited on God, the more hath my soul tasted his love. 
And now, being under sad apprehensions of approach- 
ing i^ersecutions from popish adversaries, not knowing 
what things will befall me betwixt this and the grave, 
I here, once again, enlist myself as a volunteer under 
thy sacred colours, to war a good warfare. I do pur- 
pose, by thy grace, to adhere to the true reformed 


Protestant religion, to contend earnestly for tlie faith 
once delivered to the saints, yea, to resist unto blood, 
striving against sin. My full purpose of heart is, to 
cleave to the Lord, whatever it may cost me. Behold, 
I am ready, by the assistance of thy grace, to lose 
father and mother, wife and children, brethren and 
sisters, houses and lands, all my outward comforts, 
credit, liberty, and whatever is dear to me, for thy 
sake and the gospel's. ' Thou, who art the searcher of 
hearts, knowest that I count not my life dear to me, 
so that I may finish my course with joy, and the 
ministry I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify 
the gospel of the grace of God. By the strength of 
God, I will keep on in my work and way, in the 
duties of prayer, preaching, and all christian exercises, 
and neglect no opportunity to serve my God, and save 
souls ; and though I would do God's work prudently, 
yet God forbid, that a pretence of prudence should 
prevent faithfulness. Though I be not worthy of the 
high and transcendent honour of being a martyr for 
my dear Saviour, yet my present prayer and purpose 
are, that I may not deny his name ; but, if he call me 
to it, may witness a good confession, by continuing 
in the things which I have learned and been assured 
of, knowing of whom I have learned them. I design, 
by thy grace, to hold fast and hold forth in my place 
the word of God's patience, let the Lord do with me 
what seemeth good in his eyes. Come life, come 
death, I am the Lord's. Welcome Christ with a cross! 
Welcome a fiery chariot to mount into my Father's 
palace ! "Welcome reproach for the sake of Christ ! 
Let him be magnified in my body, whether it be by 
life or death. If I be off'ered as a sacrifice to serve 
the faith of the church, I shall rejoice let what will 

o 2 


come, so that I may enjoy my Lord Christ. As, through 
grace, I have thankfully suffered a short imprison- 
ment for God, and, as I can say it sincerely, I have 
suffered joyfully the spoiling of my goods ; so I hope, 
I can comfortably believe, my God will help me not to 
love my life unto death, for this gospel I have pro- 
fessed and preached. But, O my God, I am sensible 
of the frailty of my flesh, the treachery of my heart, 
and the temptations of Satan, and I am assured, if thou 
shouldst leave me, I shall certainly fall as Peter did ; 
therefore I flee to thy all-sufficient grace ; thou alone 
art able to make me stand. Support and strengthen 
this weak and worthless worm. It is not any mea- 
sure of gifts, learning, resolution, or received grace 
that can support me, it is nothing but thy assisting 
and corroborating grace. Though I cannot dispute 
for the truth, yet thou canst make me both dispute and 
die for Christ. Though of myself I can do nothing, 
yet by the strength of Christ, I shall be able both to 
do and endure all things. Lord, support me with wis- 
dom, courage, zeal, fidelity, and all heroic christian 
graces, to pass through dangers and difficulties, and, if 
called to such a trial, to seal thy truth with my heart's 
blood. So voweth and prayeth, 

" Thy resolved servant, 



Licenses threatened to be taken away — Parliament prorogued — Li- 
censes revoked — Mr. Heywood's conduct on the occasion — His Per- 
severatice in Labours — Grateful Recollections — Parental anxiety 
— Death of Relatives, Mr. Rich. Heywood, Rev. John Angier, 
Rev. Nath. Heywood — Self-examination — Mr. Heywood appre- 
hended at Shaw chapel — Thanksgiving day — Extracts from his 
Diary — Sickness of Mrs. and Eliezer Heywood — Covenant re- 
newed — Another Excommmication — Ordination of Timothy Jollic 
— Mr. H's. successful Labours — Repeated illness of Eliezer Hey- 
wood — The death of an ungodly Preacher — Review of 1681 — 
■ Severities exercised — Spiritual Journeys — Visit to London — Deli- 
verances from Dangers — Disinterested Labours — Mr. Heywood's 
Apprehension and Trial — His Perplexity — Imprisonment in York 
Castle — Prison Employment — His Liberation — Renewal of his 

The liberty enjoyed in consequence of the licenses, 
was considered by many of the Nonconformists as very 
precarious, and so it proved. The parliament was 
displeased with the king for granting them, because it 
was an unlawful stretch of the royal prerogative. In 
February 1673, the House of Commons voted the 
king's declaration illegal, and he promised it should 
not be brought into a precedent. " In this tickle junc- 
ture," says Mr. H. " God furnished his servants with 
a subject for prayer. The king to gratify the parlia- 
ment, tore off the seal from the licenses, upon which 
our adversaries began to threaten us and execute 
penalties. Some ministers about Manchester gave over 
their public work, and most were at a loss what to do. 
The king called the judges to consult with them on 

198 LU'E 01' THE llEV. O. HEY WOOD. 

the case. They put him in mind of his promise to 
the parliament not to draw the practice into a precedent, 
yet told him all offices depended on him, and that he 
might show his displeasure at the severity of the justices 
by taking away their commissions. Accordingly when 
one Mr.Hicks,* a Nonconformist minister, was disturbed 
and fined, he rode up to the king, who not only granted 
an order for the recovery of his goods, but also for tak- 
ing away the commissions of the justices who were 
active in the business. Upon this information the 
ministers went to their work again ; blessed be God." 
Every sincere friend to the British Constitution must 
detest the servile spirit of these judges, and the arbi- 
trary conduct of this monarch, yet we cannot wonder 
that the persecuted Nonconformists embraced the op- 
portunity of exercising their natural rights, in their 
conscientious worship of God. 

At this time, as Mr. H. justly observes : " All things 
were on the wheel of change, especially concerning 
the affairs of the nation. The parliament," he says, 
*' hath been sitting at the stern above twelve years ; 
but behold a strange and incredible alteration amongst 
them. Their late votes speak astonishing change in 
the members. They that were all for the king's pre- 
rogative have gone to the other extreme, have called 
some great men in question, have appeared violent 
against the Papists, and passed many votes for the poor 
Nonconformists. But while they were proceeding 
with most energy in making tliose unexpected changes 
in which they designed something for the good of the 

* ]Mr. Hicks was a native of Yorkshire, and educated at Trin. 
Col. Dublin, He was ejected from Saltash, in Cornwall, and 
afterwards settled at Portsmouth, preaching as oppoi'tunity per- 
mitted. Unhappily he was induced to unite with the followers 
of the Duke of IMonmouth, and thereby was brought to suffer on 
the scaffold, (ice the Nonconformist's Menu vol. i. page 368 — 370. 


nation, all on a sudden they have been prorogued from 
Feb. 24th to Nov. 10th, 1674, and afterwards to April 
13th, 1675, so that there is an end to their proceed- 
ings. And what ! are you also become weak as we ? 
You stopped our mouths from preaching, and now 
yours are stopped from voting ! You turned us out of 
our houses and out of God's house ; and now you are 
turned out of the parliament house ! You caused us 
to be put in fear, and punished us for doing God's 
work ; and now you are put in fear by potent adver- 
saries, and made incapable of acting for the good of the 
nation ! How comes this to pass ? Do not you see the 
righteous hand of God in these wonderful revolutions? 
O that these things may pierce your hearts, awaken 
your consciences, and excite a spirit of repentance ! But 
how comes it to pass that your minds are thus changed? 
What caused you to mince the matter or alter any thing 
in the act of uniformity ? Time was when you would 
not vote an ace of perfect conformity away ; now you 
can dispense with the cross in baptism, subscription, de- 
claration, and renouncing of the covenant. &c. ! Are 
these things less necessary now than formerly ? Doth 
your zeal for the prelutical church slacken ? Are you 
afraid of the common enemy, the Papists ? Or is it an 
act of policy to unite all parties, and secure yourselves? 
Or are you at last convinced of the great increase and 
danger of overspreading popery ? Or do you discern 
the loyalty, peaceableness, and usefulness of the Noncon- 
formist ministry and people ? Who hath opened your 
eyes ? Surely our God to whom we have prayed. We 
know whence this comes ; but we are not ready for the 
mercy, nor is the nation in a fit posture for reformation. 
Lord, what wilt thou do with us ? What will be the 
issue of these things ? Thou knowest the contrivances 
of men, and the whole nation are at a stand, expecting 


the result of these surprising changes. God Almighty, 
put to thy helping hand, take thy place and appear at 
the helm ; awake, why sleepest thou, O Lord ? Con- 
vince the great ones of the earth that they stand in 
slippery places, and lead them to the rock of ages. 
Let them see their true interest is bound up in thine, 
and that what runs counter to thee cannot stand. The 
greatest favourites may be soon driven from the pre- 
sence and services of mortal, changeable princes, or fall 
imder the censures of the ambitious, the designs of 
their rivals, or the rage of the unruly mob. O my 
soul, there are better honours than what hang on the 
lips, or conceits of men ; there is an honour that comes 
from God only. Great men often change their places, 
but seldom move nearer to God. The only way to rise 
is to fall ; and casting ourselves low at God's feet, is 
tlie christian way of being received to the bosom of 
God. Let men attend the pleasure of princes; but, my 
soul, wait thou on God only. Let men advance in 
the world ; do thou make progress in grace. While 
men, like ants, are busily compassing the molehill of 
the world, striving which shall be the highest, let it be 
tiie height of thy ambition to prjss into the kingdom 
of heaven. While many at this day are aiming to 
make proselytes to increase their party, do thou en- 
large thy desires and quicken thy endeavours to gain 
souls to Christ, that at last thou mayest give up thy 
account with everlasting satisfaction. In the mean 
time, pity the great ones of the earth, -who have nothing 
to comfort their hearts with when the favour of princes 
fails, remembering what a great man once said ; ' If I 
had been as careful to serve the great God of heaven 
as my great master on earth, he would not have for- 
saken me in my old age.'" 

About the close of the year 167 -t, the king called 


the bishops together, to consider what should be done 
to serve the cause of religion, and, after various con- 
sultations also with the ministers of state, he was ad- 
vised to recall his licenses, and put the laws against 
the Nonconformists in execution. This was soon after 
done hy proclamation, and it was not long before Mr. 
Hey wood felt its effects. Feb. 9th, 1675, having been 
invited to preach at the new meeting-place in Leeds, 
in giving a relation of his journey he thus writes : 
" I set off from home, had studied, as I imagined, a 
good sermon, and pleased myself in supposing what 
an auditory I should get the day after, what satis- 
faction I should give to good people, and how season- 
able the text and subject were. As I rode along, I 
checked myself in these proud conceits, and told the 
Lord how just he would be in withdrawing himself, 
and endeavoured to content myself if he should prevent 
my preaching, or send wicked men to disturb me. 
When I had come as far as Morley, I met a friend on 
the road, who showed me the king's order for recalling 
licenses and suppressing meetings. When I came to 
Leeds we had a meeting at Mr. S — 's house to consult 
about my preaching. They judged it expedient to for- 
bear, partly because it was an order, and therefore in 
force as soon as published, and partly because the 
aldermen were exasperated by the Nonconformists' 
conflict with them, and victory over them ; but parti- 
cularly because they had told the mayor and aldermen, 
that if the king called in his licenses they would for- 
bear ; so I did not preach publicly, but delivered my 
sermon to them privately at Mr. S — 's house that night. 
There were great lamentations, for now we are left to 
the rigour of the law, which is sad and severe enough. 
This is the day our adversaries have expected, our 
friends have feared, and we have deserved. We have 


known what it is to wander frora parish to parish, 
seeking the word of the Lord, and God hath also laid 
upon us great scarcity of natural food, so that clean- 
ness of teeth and leanness of soul seem to go hand in 
hand as uncomfortable companions. Woe unto us, for 
we have sinned ! What multitudes flock to our doors 
begging alms, and what multitudes of precious souls 
are in danger of perishing for want of spiritual pro- 
vision ! Lord Jesus, have compassion on this miserable 
multitude that have nothing to eat ! When will the 
Lord return ? When will these days of affliction and 
persecution have an end ? How long, O Lord, wilt 
thou forsake us for ever ? But is there not sufficient 
cause ? May not God say, as to Joshua when pleading 
for Israel ? * Wherefore liest thou thus upon thy face? 
Israel have sinned, and they have also transgressed my 
covenant.' Indeed this is the true cause of this heavy 
blow. Oh for a spirit of reformation and repentance ! 
If our hearts were effectually turned, how soon would 
God turn our captivity as the streams in the south. 
Alas, how wofuUy do we complain of our sufferings, 
and how little are we afflicted with our sins ! O that 
we could learn not to put tinist in princes, nor in the 
son of man in whom there is no help !" 

Mr. Heywood had now the painful task of taking 
leave of his people, not knowing that they should have 
the opportvmity of again assembling for religious wor- 
ship in a public manner. " The most heart-melting day 
and exercise," he says, " that ever I remember was 
Lord's day, Feb. 14th. The week before we received 
the king's order for calling in licenses, and it was 
judged fit we should cease preaching publicly. I there- 
fore took my solemn farewell that day, preaching on 
Rev. ii. 4, 5. At the close I gave my reasons, and 
some advice. The occasion excited the tenderest feel- 


ings, and floods of tears, such as I never witnessed in 
all my life in public. I promised my best assistance 
to them all in private. O that God would set the 
stamp of his grace and Spirit on these warm sensations ! 
Who knows what good may be done by this closing 
sermon ? However, these feelings are a token for good 
and a presage of the Lord's gracious return. My rea- 
sons for giving over public preaching are: — ] . Because I 
would comply as far as I may, with the mind and plea- 
sure of our rulers, that they may be convinced we are 
peaceable, and to remove the imputation of sedition, of 
which God knows we are not guilty. 2. Because the 
parliament will shortly meet, who in the last session 
were taking our case into consideration; and it is hoped 
if we behave ourselves peaceably they may restore our 
liberty by law. 3. The licenses not being according to 
the established laws of the land, but by the king's pre- 
i*ogative, it is feared by some they may prove of dan- 
gerous consequence ; for if he may dispense with laws 
on one account, he may also supersede them on some 
other. 4. Several of my brethren elsewhere have given 
over this public way of preaching, especially at Leeds, 
where the people had acted nobly, and had laid out 
£400. in building a meeting-place, besides Mr. Ness's 
beyond the bridge. 5. Some of the brethren who have 
been backward at preaching would censure and con- 
demn me as obstructing their liberty if I had continued; 
and I wish not to give any offence. 6. Because I would 
not ensnare people, but let them know on what terms 
we now are, that they might not lay the blame on me, 
if hereafter any fine be laid upon them, but that they 
may know the worst and count the cost. 7. Because 
my people, especially the most intelligent advised me 
to it, and judged it the most prudent course that could 
be taken to withdraw into more retired meetings. 8. 


I do not repent, because it was an affecting day. The 
sad parting may do good, and as God hath met with 
me in more retired seasons, so I hope he will hereafter 
meet with me." 

When the king's proclamation was issued, informers 
took courage, and in many places persecution pre- 
vailed ; but some justices were so honest and friendly, 
as to declare, " they could not trade with their neigh- 
bours one day, and send them to gaol the next." The 
king's license was now of no benefit, but Mr. Hey- 
wood had too high a sense of his allegiance to his 
divine Sovereign, to forsake the cause of Christ when 
it exposed him to danger. Prudence dictated, espe- 
cially at the first, that the assemblies to which he 
preached should be more private than before ; but he 
cheerfully embraced every opportunity of dispensing 
to them the word of salvation. " Though there are 
threatenings, as to our liberty, on all hands," he ob- 
serves, " and it is said, four hundred persons are sum- 
moned to appear at Pontefract Sessions, this week, for 
not going to church, and though I had taken my leave 
of public work, yet yesterday, and most Lord's days 
since the calling in of the licenses, I have preached in 
my meeting place, and had nearly as numerous assem- 
blies as before, without molestation ; blessed be my 
good God. Though licenses from men are void, yet 
our license from heaven is not out of date. O what 
rich privileges have we enjoyed ! But Satan, envying 
our precious enjoyments, hath gone another way to 
work, by painful divisions among ourselves. The oc- 
casion was small, but the effects were distressing. A 
lad running away from his apprenticeship, produced 
anger amongst intimate acquaintances. Affairs of 
many years' date have been brought up with various 
aggravations, which have engaged many of our society 


in broils. O that ever I have lived to see this day ! 
For the divisions of Israel there have been sad thoughts 
of heart. I am sure, that in me they have occasioned 
great searchings of heart. I was never so much at a loss 
how to conduct myself towards all as becometh the 
gospel. How small a spark kindles a great fire ! How 
little are the best of us able to brook reproaches ! 
How apt are we to avenge ourselves ! How hard is it 
to conquer self, or cast out the old leaven of malice ! 
How apt to think we do well to be angry ! How im- 
petuous and suspicious is unruly passion ! Prayer 
and reason may allay it a little ; but what ungovern- 
able returns doth it make ? In our j)assion, how ready 
are we to unchristian each other, to bury all former 
kindnesses, and to put an awkward face on former 
conduct ! How strangely does prejudice interpret all 
words and actions, though no harm was meant ! Lord, 
what a swarm of wasps is lodged in the heart of man ! 
Who would have expected these things from some, 
who once condemned themselves as the vilest part of 
creation ! Reflection on our circumstances has made me 
say, with David ' Help, Lord, for the godly man 
ceaseth ; for the faithful fail from among the children 
of men.' The God of heaven humble us by a spirit of 
repentance, and pour upon us a spirit of recon- 

Though Mr. H. was deeply afflicted, for some time, 
by this internal contest, yet he and his people were 
graciously preserved from the attacks of outward per- 
secutions, though sometimes they had many alarms. 
On one occasion, having dismissed the congregation 
suddenly, through fear of danger, Mr. H. thus ex- 
presses himself, "June 18th, 1676. Lord's day, while 
I was at prayer, E. D. sent me a message to acquaint 
me, that three men were coming to apprehend me. I 


knew not what to do, but dismissed the congregation 
and withdrew to W. Clay's, which showed my 
cowardice and pusillanimity. It is true, after those 
men were gone by, we mustered the company and 
proceeded again ; but my spirit was much discom- 
posed in preaching. It was intended that there should 
be preaching again at four o'clock, but people hung 
about all that time, and some thought there was dan- 
ger, so I forbore preaching that evening. When the 
suspicious persons were gone, my heart was shut up 
and much hardened, and God did apparently withdraw 
from me, which greatly afflicted me. O M^hat a dis- 
tracted and disappointed sabbath was it ! God had a 
hand in it ; but I see my weakness, and desire repent- 
ance and assistance for the future. On Monday morn- 
ing, God melted my heart for these things." 

The continued kindness of Gdd to Mr. Heywood 
made deep impressions on his grateful heart, and he 
records some pleasant meditations he had about this 
time, on 2 Sam. vii. 20 ; while travelling to preach at 
Alverthorp. " How sweetly," says he, " did God melt 
my heart Avith a sense of his mercies toward me ! O my 
soul, review the remembrance of them, and see what 
fruit may fall from the tree at a second shaking. Let 
me recount a little the kindnesses I have experienced 
in my soul, body, estate, relations, and all that concerns 
me. 1. For my soul, what hath God wrought for it 
and in it ? God the Father hath shewn me special fa- 
vour ; God the Son hath laid down his life to redeem 
me ; God the Holy Spirit hath convinced, converted, 
comforted, and established me. The Lord hath given 
liimself to be my portion, granted me pardon of sin, 
wrought saving grace in my heart, adopted me as his 
child, quickened and enlarged me in duties, vouchsafed 
to me communion with himself, assured me of future 


glory, carried me graciously thus far towards heaven, 
and will guide me by his counsel, and afterwards re- 
ceive me to glory. And what could David say more ? 
2. In my conjugal circumstances I have been highly 
favoured, and my grateful acknowledgments are due 
for the distinguishing kindness Providence has shown 
me, in allotting me one and another companion to be 
my solace amidst the trying scenes of my life. 3. God 
has given me three sons, all living, only the youngest 
lives with God in his immediate presence, having died 
in infancy under the covenant. The other two have 
been devoted to God from their childhood, as Samuel. 
They are engaged in the service of the church, having 
voluntarily chosen it, are comfortably circumstanced, 
and profitably employed. They have made good pro- 
ficiency, have conducted themselves hopefully, have 
gifts and fitness for their work, and are very promising, 
being under the covenant, and having a large stock of 
prayers and tears laid uj) for them and still increasing. 
And what could David say more ? ' Thou, Lord, know- 
est thy servant,' and hast given hopes that my pos- 
terity shall bear up thy name as well as mine for many 
generations. 4. God hath blessed me as to public or- 
dinances. He hath cast the lines for me in pleasant 
places, given me a goodly heritage, and maintained 
my lot. O the feast of fat things we have had while 
others have been famishing ! Our eyes see what kings 
and prophets desired ; our ears hear the joyful sound. 
O the blessed days of the Son of man, the sabbaths of 
rest, sermons, prayers, and ordinances we have enjoyed! 
And what could David desire more, who wished to see 
God's power and glory as he had seen them in the 
sanctuary ? 5. God hath done more; he hath made me 
a dispenser of the blessed gospel. He hath orderly 
and suitably trained me up in advantageous place* 


and under proper tutors. He hath honoured me with 
gospel ordination, given me gifts for the work, made 
me laborious and useful in it, and given nie a numer- 
ous, obedient, and peaceable j^eople, and many gi*acious 
souls. He hath granted me credit and honour among 
God's people and others, and upheld me in my public 
work, (notwithstanding much opposition on all hands) 
these twenty-five years. And what could David, the 
sweet singer of Israel say more? 'Thou, Lord, knowest 
thy servant,' that more success of my poor labours is 
all that I desire as my reward. 6. Yet once more, the 
Lord hath vouchsafed me all outward, useful accom- 
modations ; I want nothing that is necessary for me 
in my circumstances. God hath given me the right 
exercise of reason, comfortable health of body, a house 
of my own to live in and entertain his people. He hath 
given me a sufficiency to supply my wants, though 
much of it from hand to mouth, suitable food and rai- 
ment, a servant to attend me at home, and a horse to 
carry me abroad, friends to receive me, employment to 
occupy me, civil and spiritual liberty, a good report 
among men, a study to retire to, a competent number 
of useful books, disentanglement from worldly affairs, 
all needful accommodations, and a heart to make a 
moderate use of them. And what could David say 
more? except that he was a potent prince, and I am a 
poor preacher. Well, be it so; this state of life is fitter 
for me on many accounts. ' Thou, Lord, knowest thy 
servant,' that I would rather be a minister in the pul- 
pit to convert souls, than a king on the throne to rule 
over men. Farewell earthly crowns, welcome the cross 
of Christ." 

Many indeed were the mercies Mr. Heywood re- 
ceived, and great was his enjoyment, yet he was also 
a man of sorrows, and found that his path sometimes 


lay throug'li a vale of tears. After his sons had been 
for a season with Mr. Frankland, he sent them to the 
University of Edinburgh, where they took the degree 
of Master of Arts. During their continuance at this 
place, he was alarmed by painful reports concerning 
them, when afterwards, to his great joy, they proved 
to be false ; but they naturally occasioned, for a time, 
much anxiety and distress in the bosom of an affec- 
tionate and pious parent. His feelings on those occa- 
sions may be partly known by the following extracts : 
" Jan. 26th, 1677. I went to Rawden-hall to preach, 
where was a full assembly. Just as I was going to 
begin, R. T. gave me a letter from B. of Bramhope, 
which informed me of a report generally circulated in 
the country, that ray two sons were both drowned in 
Scotland. It troubled me at the moment; but having 
other work before me, God put it out of my mind, and 
helped me in prayer and preaching, only in the latter 
part of my sermon, it overpowered me, and I was 
ready to faint. Immediately after I had finished, I 
went into the parlour, and inquired what had been 
heard of it. J. Smith told me it had been reported 
three weeks together. I despatched a messenger to Mr. 
Whitaker, to inquire the grounds of that report ; but 
he not being at home, I received no satisfaction. 
When I went to bed, God melted my heart in secret 
prayer, and I was much helped to say, ' The will of 
the Lord be done.' O how sweet was it to lie at God's 
feet ! I thought I could sleep and be satisfied ; but 
the imaginations of my heart kept me awake most of 
the night.* God helped me in the morning duty, but 

* Painful as Mr. Heywood's feelings were on this occasion and 
at other times, under similar circumstances, yet these troubles 
were not without their spiritual benefit, and sixteen years after- 
wards, he thus expresses himself when writing his Treatise, enti- 

VOL. I. P 


all the way home my heart was full, and in great sug- 
jiense between hopes and fears. When I came to my 
own gate, a boy called to me, and told me of a letter 
from my sons, and when I came into my house and 
read it, found that all was wdl with them. Blessed, 
blessed be my God, who hath dispersed my fears." 

On one occasion, he says : " O how little power 
liave I over my own thoughts ! I feel the truth of 
that word : ' When he giveth quietness, who then can 
make trouble ? and when he hideth his face, who then 
can behold him?' But now I feel the benefit of 
prayer. In the multitude of my sad thoughts within 
me, thy counsels and comforts, O Lord, delight my 
soul. Thou hast known my soul in adversity, and 
now I give up myself and mine unto thee, upon a new 
score and renewed obligations. How things are, or 
will yet be with my sons, I know not ; but thou hast 
quieted my heart in the actings of faith and prayer, 
in consequence of which, I do resolve, by thy grace, 

tied, " The Best Entail :" " I have found that the miscarriage of 
my child, which is the greatest cross I ever met with, hath been 
blessed for the good of my soul, as a good woman said, ' Bearing 
my children and my crosses has cost me deai', but I would not 
be without either.' It is not fit that I should choose my affliction, 
what God lays on me is welcome, and I will etseem Christ no worse 
for his cross ; for I find these bitter waters the most medicinal, 
and the sweetest fruits grow^ on this bitter tree. The depravity 
of my child hath helped to make me better, and this heart- 
breaking hath proved a heart-melting. True it is, that -wicked 
men are hardened by seeing the children of the covenant thus 
miscarry, (even as divisions and offences amongst God's people 
are occasions of ruin, yea, even gospel-preaching is to some the 
savour of death,) yet as God is just therein to them, so my soul 
hath cause to bless the physician of souls, who so tempers this 
poison as to make it salutary to me ; for my crosses are better 
than their comforts. I will recommend religion, though I mourn 
over my irreligious child, for godliness is gain, though even I gain 
not grace for my child by it." — Vol. 4. p. 467- 


to call upon thee as long as I live, and trust in thy 
covenant for my posterity. My sons are thine more 
than mine, thou gavest them me, and I have given 
them back again to thee, not only in the ordinance of 
baptism, and many times since by prayers and tears, 
but in a peculiar 'manner. May 15th, 1673, before 
many witnesses. The remembrance of that day bears 
up my heart with much encouragement, that God will 
hear and answer in giving them grace. Lord, my 
children are parts of myself, and in giving up myself 
to thee, I have also given them ; and wilt thou not 
accept this loan ? Is not thy covenant firm and free ? 
May it not be made good to me, as well as to Abra- 
ham or David ? If I had any thing better than my 
own soul and the souls of my wife and children to 
give thee, thou shouldst have it. Lord, are thy cove- 
nant mercies worn out ? Hast thou but one blessing, 
my Father ? Wilt thou begin to cut off the blessed 
entail at the third generation ? Doth not thy promise 
reach to a thousand generations of them that fear 
thee ? O Lord, deal kindly with thy servant and his 
seed ; notwithstanding, if there be iniquity in me, 
scourge me thyself, for why shouldst thou leave mine 
to the temptations of Satan and their own hearts' lusts? 
Lord, shall children of so many prayers and tears 
miscarry ? Wilt thou not take possession of thy own 
right and thy Son's purchase ? I know that neither 
my house- nor heart is so with thee as it ought to be ; 
but thou hast made a covenant with me, ordered in all 
things and sure ; this is all my salvation, and all my 
desire, although thou make it not to grow. I must 
needs say, I have broken the covenant by unbelief, im- 
penitence, and failures, and thou mightest justly leave 
my sons to walk in my steps. But doth not thy "cove- 
nant provide a remedy ? Is there not pardon in the 

P 2 


blood of Christ, for poor, penitent sinners ? If my 
heart and house are out of order, yet thy covenant is 
well ordered ; if my soul be fickle and inconstant, yet 
thy covenant is sure and stedfast. Thou knowest, O 
Lord, all my desires are before thee, and my groaning 
is not hid from thee. Shouldst thou not make my 
house to grow in numbers, estate, or honoiu', thou 
knowest that is not my object and errand in my ad- 
dresses to thee. Have I not told thee many a time, I 
shall be freely content, if they be no richer than I have 
been ; or to have no greater benefices in the church 
than I have had, to be at a poor chapel (if God restore), 
or to preach in a house to poor sinners, and convert 
souls to God ? I would rather have them serious, ex- 
perienced preachers, amongst a few despised servants 
of God, than doctors or bishops in the highest eccle- 
siastical promotions. Lord, leave them not to con- 
form to ceremonies, or turn formalists, or become per- 
secutors of thy people. Let it appear, there is a bless- 
ing in their education in a private college, more than 
in the public universities. I have committed them 
more to thy tuition than man's ; and if thou wilt grant 
them special, sanctifying grace, and useful gifts, and 
learning to fit them for public work amongst thy peo- 
ple, I will, by thy grace, bless thy name while I live ; 
yea, I do solemnly purpose to devote a day in every 
year to the exercise of solemn thanksgiving for that 
mercy particularly, and to spend some time monthly 
apart by myself to praise thy name. Lord, I hope my 
heart is sincere in this solemn vow. Give me both a 
heart and an occasion to pay these vows I now make 
in the perplexity of my soul. Amen, amen. 


" Servus Domini." 
Jan. 20. 1677- 


" The Lord having in some degree granted the 
mercy, by sending my sons home in safety out of 
Scotland, and they being studious and hopeful in re- 
ference to religion, I did, according to my preceding 
vow, appoint May 9th, 1677, as a day of solemn 
thanksgiving to God, for his mercy displayed in all 
their journeys and studies, at which time God did 
graciously help us in singing and speaking to his 
praise. Blessed be the Lord, it was not without some 
signal appearance of his presence amongst us." 

The year 1677 was a memorable year to Mr. Hey- 
wood and his family, on account of the repeated visita- 
tions of death. The first was the death of his aged 
father Richard Heywood, on which occasion he thus 
expresses himself: "At last God hath put an end to 
the long and afflicted days of my dear, tender-hearted 
father ; he died March 1st, aged about 82. I may say 
of him as is recorded of Abraham, that ' he gave up 
the ghost and died in a good old age, an old man and 
full of years ; and was gathered unto his people :' and 
as Isaac and Ishmael buried him in a cave, so my dear 
brother and I buried our beloved father. O my soul, 
hast thou not some tears to shed at the funeral of a 
father ? Nature binds thee to some workings of affec- 
tion, and grace helps to regulate them. Thou hast 
parted with a father, and is this nothing ? God would 
not have such a providence pass without observation 
and improvement. Thou hast buried a father that 
provided food and raiment for thee in thy younger 
days, a father that was at great care and charge for 
thy education, both in the best schools of the neigh- 
bourhood and at the university ; but all this was small 
compared with the inward and anxious workings of 
his heart for thee, which thou didst never so feelingly 
know till thou hast of late felt the same towards thy 


own. O what instructions, exhortations, and admoni- 
tions didst thou receive from him ! What prayers did 
he put up for thee, and what grief did he feel at thy 
failings ! What jealousy he had of me when he came 
to visit me at Cambridge ! What charge did he leave 
v/ith my tutor concerning me, and how gladly did he 
welcome any hopes of my well-doing ! What solicitude 
he had concerning my settlement ! And though he had 
been at a great expense in my education, yet how fear- 
ful was he lest I should enter the ministry unfit ! This 
induced him to make provision for my residence in 
Mr. Angier s family ; but Providence called me to this 
place. Even then he did not leave me, but followed 
me with his counsels and prayers to his dying day. O 
what a father ! Few have the like ! Though I can truly 
say, I have studied to requite him, and thought no- 
thing I could do for him too much, in his straits, yet 
I have fallen far short of a full recompence. He had 
a tender love for me, and I hope the remembrance of it 
will not quickly be worn av/ay from my mind. My 
gracious Lord also hath not left me comfortless, con- 
cerning my dear, deceased father. Blessed be God that 
his hoary head was found in the ways of righteousness, 
and that we have good reasons for hope that he sleeps 
in Jesus, and will have a happy resurrection ; and 
what can we desire more ? O Lord, raise up a suc- 
cession of God-fearing worshippers ; and as thou hast 
been my father's God, and my mother's God, and my 
God, and the God of my dear companion now at rest, 
so continue to be my God and guide to death, and be 
the God of my children, and children's children, even 
to a thousand generations." 

About six months after the death of his father, he 
was called to attend the funeral of his father-in-law 
Angier, whom he loved as his own parent. The man- 


ner in which he records the event shows how deeply 
it affected him. " O sad catastrophe ! dreadful blow 
to Zion and my family ! Be black ye heavens, tremble 
thou earth, lament ye saints and sons of Zion. A 
strong oak is fallen, the choicest flower in the garden 
is plucked, the Rev. John Angier, pastor of Denton 
forty-six years, the honour of the ministry in those 
parts, my dear father-in-law, the best friend I had on 
earth, is fallen ! He was a man of God, a minister of 
the gospel, and such a one as is not left. The first 
ague fit attacked him Aug. 21, and five or six others 
so weakened his spirits and wasted his strength, that 
Sept. 1st, 1677, he breathed his last. He was buried 
at Denton with the greatest solemnity, Sept. 3rd ; 
when two knights, twelve ministers, many worthy 
gentlemen, and multitudes of common people attended 
his funeral and made great lamentation. And, O my 
soul, hast thou nothing to say, nothing to do, nothing to 
lament under this overwhelming providence? A pray- 
ing Moses is gone, one that stood in the gap and pleaded 
for Zion and the state ; one that, like Aaron, stood be- 
tween the living and the dead, and prevailed to turn 
away God's wrath from us ; one that gave God no rest 
day or night, who was successful and saw many re- 
turns of prayer. As a minister of the gospel, he was 
so diligent in studying, so exact in walking, so weighty 
in expressions, so laborious in God's work, so harmless, 
charitable, wise, moderate, and useful in private con- 
versation ! Though I have known many good men, 
yet I never knew one like him in every thing ; the 
greater our former mercy, the greater our loss now. 
Woe to us ! What have we lost ? A spiritual father 
in Christ, an earthly angel, a faithful steward of hea- 
venly mysteries, a Boanerges to awaken drowsy sin- 
ners, a Barnabas to comfort drooping souls, an Apollos 


mighty in the scriptures, and fit to water God's plan- 
tation, and a Paul who was caught up to the third 
heavens, and saw mysteries that his modesty forbad 
him to utter to others. It now appears what a bless- 
ing he was. No sooner was his soul in heaven and his 
body in the grave, than the scene was changed, and 
darkness overspread a land of Goshen. O how doth 
that place sit solitary which was full of people ! How 
do the ways of Zion mourn ! O that our eyes may 
affect our hearts !" 

This breach was soon followed by the death of his 
only surviving brother, the Rev. Nathaniel Heywood, 
of Ormskirk. Well might Mr. Heywood say : " Job's 
messengers make haste, treading upon the heels of each 
other. Scarcely are our tears wiped off for one friend, 
but tidings of another appal us. God hath broken me 
with breach upon breach ! Righteous art thou, O Lord, 
when I plead with thee. O my soul, be dumb, open 
not thy mouth against God. Thou, Lord, hast done 
it; and though I nmst not murmur, I may groan; 
though I must not complain of God, I may of myself ; 
though I must not mourn as one without hope, I can- 
not lay aside all natural affection. O with what a blow 
hath God terminated this year ! My dear and only 
brother, ten years 3ij)uhlic preacher, and half that period 
vicar of Ormskirk, but turned out on black Bartholo- 
mew's day, 1662, having preached in 'private since, 
and prophesied in sackcloth, is now clothed in white 
robes before the throne in heaven. His torturhig pains 
struck many a blow at that goodly tree which death 
cut down. Lord's day morning Dec. I6tli, 1677. This 
is a great loss to the church and nation, to his parish, 
to his family, and to me in particular. O lamentable 
loss ! What shall I say ? How are the mighty fallen ! 
How is the beauty of Israel slaiu upon the high places ! 


Alas ! alas ! those pleasant gardens of Eden, which have 
been watered with the rivers of God, are likely to be 
as the mountains of Gilboa, upon which no more whole- 
some doctrine will drop and distil as the dew; but 
thistles grow instead of wheat, and noisome weeds in- 
stead of barley. O my dear and amiable brother ! 
what words shall I take, with which to lament thee ? 
Alas my brother ! the honour of our family is gone ! 
He was a Christian, and a minister of great ability, an 
ornament to his generation, eminent for zeal, piety, 
humility, and all ministerial endowments. I am dis- 
tressed for thee my brother, very pleasant hast thou 
been to me ; yea, every way desirable : profitable while 
living, honoured in death, and loved in all. Why did 
not that fatal stroke take me away rather than thee ? 
Am not I the older, and should not I have gone before 
thee ? No, no, death was not blind. My brother was 
ripe and I am not ; he had made haste and despatched 
his work, and is now receiving his abundant reward, 
whilst I am wearily tossed on this tempestuous ocean. 
The death of this excellent servant of God hath gone 
nearer my heart than any loss I have sustained these 
many years, on several accounts. We were born of 
the same parents, were pupils under the same tutors, 
were neighbouring ministers several years, and for 
some time kept house together. Seldom has natural 
affection in brothers been raised to that height that 
ours was. His going to a distant place was painful to 
us both, and caused many tears at parting ; but our 
absence was as oil to the flame. Now we are removed 
to a greater distance from each other ! It increaseth my 
affliction that the church should lose so useful a person 
in such a day as this. He possessed incomparable 
qualifications ; he had such a strong memory, profound 
judgment, ready elocution, and extensive learning ; he 


was many degrees beyond my attainments and capacity, 
and I have often admired his singular dexterity in 
managing both polemical and practical discourses to 
much satisfaction and edification. Seldom have I seen 
so much fitness for the Lord's work in so young a per- 
son. He was far more adapted to do God service in his 
church than I am, or am ever likely to be. It grieves 
me when I think of his long continued pain during the 
most part of the last summer, and yet I have not given 
him a visit in his deep affliction, having been prevented 
by business, till he was suddenly surprised with that 
sickness which proved mortal in three days. I am ex- 
ceedingly troubled on this account, especially since I 
have heard he expressed a great desire to see me. 
Lord, forgive me this sin ! for I charge myself deeply 
with it, though I then thought I had sufficient excuse. 
This breach is also the more aggravated because it 
follows so near upon others. My father died March 
1st ; my youngest sister, Alice, May 9th ; my father 
Angier Sept. 1st ; and to bring up the rear, my dear 
brother, Dec. I6th : all these in this memorable year, 
surely it has been a black and dismal year ! I pray 
that the death of these eminent servants of God this 
year, may not prove a fearful prognostic to a more fatal 
year ensuing. God sometimes hides his saints in the 
grave from approaching storms, puts his children to 
bed before night comes on, and calls home his ambas- 
sadors before open war breaks out. Though the death 
of God's aged and eminent servants be often a great 
loss, yet the death of young Timothies, engaged in 
God's work, is in a sense more ominous : as when a 
man cuts down not only old trees but young plants, it 
is a sign he intends to lay all waste ; this the Lord 
hath remarkably done of late. How very few are the 
trees of God's right-hand planting, that even a child 



may count them ! How many full grown cedars have 
fallen of late, and how few slips have been planted in 
their place ! Though many are growing up in the 
plantations, yet how few give evidence that they are 
of the right description ! We fear they will either be 
cumberers of the ground, or bring forth sour grapes! 
Though this man of God was young in years, he was 
old in gifts, grace, and usefulness. He was but forty 
four years of age, yet he had attained to the gravity 
and maturity of eighty. His time was short, but he 
had lived long, and he has now obtained the prize ; 
the crown is set on his triumphant head, and he is in- 
troduced into the joy of his Lord, while we, poor dull 
things, are lagging behind, lamenting our loss, and 
fearing the approach of more dreadful storms. Lord, 
prevent our fears, prepare us for trials, sanctify this 
mournful breach, and bring us safely home." 

These solemn and repeated strokes produced a deep 
impression on Mr. Heywood's mind, and made him 
more attentive to the important duty of self-examina- 
tion, as the best preparation for his own solemn change. 
The seriousness, earnestness, and carefulness with 
which he carried on this investigation, will apj)ear from 
the following extract: "Nov. 1st, 1677, I set myself 
in the evening to the practice of that much neglected 
duty, self-examination; and my soul was occupied with 
such thoughts as these, which I feel disposed to commit 
to paper : — 

" My soul, thou and I have been long strangers. I 
go on in the profession of religion, preaching, study- 
ing, and performing religious exercises in public and 
private ; but dost thou not read of searching a man's 
ways ? Doth not God command persons to commune 
with their own hearts, and make diligent search? 
Hast thou not in thy public work lately urged this 


duty ? Are not trying times coming on ; and is not 
self-judging in the petty sessions a good help to pre- 
vent loss or prepare for the great assizes ? Is not the 
matter of very great importance ? Art thou content 
to go hoodwinked, and live at confused uncertainties ? 
Will not a thorough self-trial pay for the trouble? 
Art thou so earnest that others should do it, and wilt 
thou not engage in it thyself? Surely, my soul, it is 
a profitable duty, and as it is difficult, so it is most 
likely to prove necessary, because a subtle devil and 
a wicked heart so much oppose it. And is it indeed 
so hard a work? Is it a long journey for a man to 
travel to his own heart? Shall the difficulty dis- 
courage thee ? Shall it not rather quicken thy endea- 
vours considering its necessity? Art thou not ap- 
proaching the fiftieth year of thy life, and is it not the 
afternoon of thy day ? Will not death shortly cause 
thy sun to set, and will it not then be of singular use 
to have thy evidences fairly written ? Who knows 
what violent assaults Satan may make upon thee, or 
how thy Lord may withdraw from thee ? Then, 
having thy case well stated, resolved, and confirmed 
on scripture grounds, it may comfort thee in some 
trial to which thou mayest be called. Come then, 
my soul, and let me take thee to task, and ask thee 
some important questions. But do not thou, as thou 
art wont, shuffle and trifle, and put me off with good 
words and hopeful appearances ; but go to the bottom, 
lay the axe to the root of the tree, and be faithful to 
God and thy own conscience in this great affair. 
Self-flattery is the high road to inevitable and eternal 

" First, My soul, dost thou believe, that when thou 
art separated from this body in which thou now 
lodgest, thou shalt die as the beasts, and have no ex- 


istence ? Ans. No, I am sure, both from scripture 
and reason, that I shall have existence in a separate 
state; for men may kill the body, but God can cast the 
soul into hell when the body is laid in the grave. 
There shall also be a resurrection, when the body must 
follow the state of the soul." 

^^ Secondly, But what life must thou live when 
thou shalt depart from this tabernacle ? Ans. I do 
verily believe, that mine, as well as other men's souls, 
will go into an unchangeable state of joy or misery, in 
heaven or hell ; and that when the body returns to 
dust as it was, the soul shall ascend to God that gave 
it, to receive from him the sentence of al)solution or 
condemnation. It is appointed unto men once to die, 
and after this, the judgment ; that is, a personal 
judgment, preparatory to the solemn day of judgment 
for all the world. I am as confident that when the 
soul departs from the body, it enters either joy or 
woe, as I do believe it must depart." 

" Thirdly, My soul, what state of eternity dost thou 
think thou shalt enter, when soul and body are sepa- 
rated ? A71S. I am not much concerned to know at 
what hour this body will begin to moulder, nor whe- 
ther I shall die a natural or violent death, by a sudden 
accident or by the hands of persecutors ; but this I do 
now believe, with some degree of confidence, (though 
long under many discouraging doubts and fears,) that 
when the earthly house of this my tabernacle shall be 
dissolved, I shall have a house, not made with hands, 
eternal in the heavens. It has indeed cost me many 
sighs, prayers, tears, and examinations before I arrived 
at this comfortable assurance ; for it is not the work 
of a day or two, but of many years. Now I know 
whom I have believed, and am persuaded, that he is 
able to keep that which I have committed unto him 


against that day — the day of death and judgment ; and 
that he will guide me by his counsel, and afterward 
receive me to glory. The same gracious and faithful 
God that took me from my mother's womb, that has 
been the support of my childhood and staff of my 
youth, will also be the crown and comfort of my gray 
hairs : I dare trust him, and as old Polycarp, when 
tempted by advice given to forsake Christ, could say, 
* Eighty-six years hath the Lord kept me, and shall I 
now forsake him in my old age?' so I can say, above 
forty years hath the Lord allured and drawn out my 
heart after himself, and shall I now forsake him ? will 
he now forsake me ? Indeed, I have been ready to 
sink often, and have sometimes imagined I could not 
go one step farther ; but, through grace, I have set up 
many Ebenezers, and having obtained help of God, 
I continue to this day as a monument of divine mercy. 
What God hath done for me, poor and unworthy as 
I am, will be a source of admiration to saints and an- 
gels throughout eternity." 

" Fourthly, But, O my soul, thou seemest to be very 
confident ; is it not presumption, a hope built on the 
sand ? How dost thou hojje to be saved, for thou art 
a sinner ? Doth not God threaten death to sinners ? 
Is he a man that he should repent, and will he reverse 
the sentence for thee ? Is not hell prepared for sinners, 
and are not fallen angels reserved in chains against 
the judgment of the great day? On what grounds 
dost thou expect felicity, seeing many rational creatures 
just like thee by nature are now in hell ? Ans. My 
case is indeed the same by nature as that of the vessels 
of wrath, for I am a child of wrath as well as others. 
God made man upright, but he hath sought out many 
inventions, and hath lost God's image and communion 
with him. But God in his infinite love and grace hath 


pitied lapsed mankind, and wlien there was none in 
heaven or earth of sufficient power to rescue forlorn 
wretches, he sent his own Son, the second person of 
the sacred Trinity, who thought it no robhery to be 
equal with God ; being God, he sent him to take upon 
him man's nature, to live a life of sorrows, and die an 
accursed death, to satisfy violated justice, to appease 
offended Deity, and make reconciliation between God 
and man. ' This is a faithful saying and worthy of 
all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world 
to save sinners ;' he ascended into heaven, and sitteth 
at the right hand of the Father, to pursue the same 
design of saving souls ; as prophet to teach, as priest to 
intercede, and as king to gather and rule his purchased 
people ; and at last he will bring all their souls, with 
this of mine, I hope, to enjoy God everlastingly." 

Fiftlily^ And dost thou imagine, O my soul, that 
all will be saved by the merits of Christ's undertaking? 
If not, what ground hast thou to believe that thou 
shalt have benefit through Christ's redeeming love 
more than others, who, notwithstanding his death, 
and though they live under the sound of the gospel, 
and as confidently hope for salvation as thou, shall 
perish everlastingly? Ans. If I can find that God 
hath, by his grace, wrought in me repentance and true 
faith in Christ Jesus, I have good reason to hope that 
I shall be saved, because these are things that accom- 
pany salvation ; and though there be no merit nor 
worthiness in me, yet God is faithful to his promises, 
and it is as impossible for a truly penitent, believing 
soul to go to hell, as for an impenitent and unbelieving 
soul to go to heaven. I find that God makes sinners 
meet for heaven here, gives them the earnest of his 
Spirit, seals them to the day of redemption, and here- 
after gives an inheritance to them that are sanctified ; 


whom he calleth, he also glorifieth. It is true, the 
whole of this is of grace, pure grace ; and when free 
grace will magnify itself, nothing shall hinder the 
salvation of the soul, for he that hath begun a good 
M^ork in me, will also perform it until the day of 
Christ ; I may be confident of this, because faithful is 
he that hath 2)romised, who also will do it ; though I 
be a weak worm of myself, yet I shall be kept by the 
power of God through faith unto salvation." 

" Sixthly, O my soul, it is a truth, that those who 
are sanctified are also justified and shall be saved ; but 
art thou sanctified, in whom lodgeth such a multitude 
of vile dispositions ? Art thou made meet for heaven, 
who art not meet for any good work here ? Art thou 
sealed by the Holy Spirit of promise, who art daily 
grieving the Spirit, by sinning against God ? Is there 
any good work wrought in thy heart, who canst not 
but be conscious to thyself of so much evil, that some- 
times thou canst not perceive the existence of good ? 
Ans. I must confess, that in me, that is, in my flesh, 
dwelleth no good thing ; to me belongeth nothing but 
confusion of face ; I am the chief of sinners, the least 
of saints, if a saint. AVhen I look into my heart, I 
find a cage of unclean and noisome birds, and such 
a mass of sin, that I am ready to say, surely no spark 
of saving grace can dwell in such a heart. Can Christ 
and Belial share so small a compass as a human soul? 
Will not our Lord be supreme where he comes to 
dwell ? Is it imaginable he can rule where the devil's 
interest is so strong ? Surely this very consideration 
may damp my hopes and discourage ray heart. True 
* circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and 
not in the letter ; whose praise is not of men, but of 
God. ' ^Vhen I read such scriptures, I am much cast 
down in my own eyes, especially reflecting on the 


swarms of vain thoughts that lodge within me. These 
things make me suppose that all my feelings within, 
and worship outwardly, are but a fine-spun hypocrisy, 
which will be swept away as the spider's web, with all 
the hope that shrouds itself under it. But stay, my 
soul, be not so peremptory ; condemn not all the gene- 
ration of the just, and thyself with them. Learn to dis- 
tinguish bet wen true perfection of j)arts and degrees, and 
to judge of a Christian's state in point of sanctification. 
Distinguish between a state of sin, and the acts of sin — 
between having hypocrisy, and being a hypocrite — 
between the indwelling of corruption, and the dominion 
of it — between a state of imperfection in grace, and a 
state of perfection in glory ; learn these well, and then 
descend into the heart. O my soul, though thou canst 
not say, thou art clean, yet thou canst say, that 'having 
these promises, thou art cleansing thyself from all fil- 
thiness of the flesh and spirit ;' and 'having this hope, 
thou art purifying thyself.' Canst thou not truly say, 
thou hatest every false way, and regardest not iniquity 
in thy heart ? Wouldst thou not willingly be deli- 
vered from this body of death, as thy greatest enemy ? 
Wouldst thou not be holy as God is holy, in all 
manner of thinking and conversation ? Art thou 
not content to pluck out a right eye, or cut off a 
right hand ? Doth not the spirit within thee lust 
against the flesh ? I hope my soul can comfortably 
answer these characteristical interrogations. True, I 
have a troublesome inmate, and there is a sin that doth 
easily beset me and too much prevails ; but I can call 
to record how many prayers, tears, and lamentations, 
my corruptions have cost me. Oh what panting for 
perfect sanctification ! What would I give might I be 
free from sin ! If God would set me at liberty from 
the baneful influence of internal depravity, it would. 

VOL. I. Q 


be the most blessed day I ever saw ; I hope I coukl 
rejoice more therein than in the gain of the whole 
world. How weary am I of myself, and being in the 
world, because of sin ! God knows, and this conscience 
can witness, and some rooms where I have been can 
bear testimony, that no affliction that ever befell me 
hath rested so sadly on ray si)irit, as my sins, and rather 
than commit them again against my gracious Lord, I 
thought I should be content to be on a rack, yea, to 
endure infernal torments. Hath not my God found 
me many a time on my face, uttering my sad com- 
plaints for those sins the world hath known nothing 
of, and for spiritual wickednesses ? Have I not in- 
quired into scripture ways of mortification of sensual 
affections ? Have I not watched against occasions of 
sin ? Hath not my soul been striking at the root of 
sin, and making fresh applications by faith to the 
death of Christ for crucifying the flesh and its lusts ? 
And hath my spiritual combat been altogether without 
success ? Hath not my heavenly Joshua sometimes 
caused me to set my feet on the necks of these Canaan- 
itish kings ? Surely, my soul can say, thanks be to 
God who hath given me the victory through our Lord 
Jesus Christ. ^Vell then, my soul can truly answer, 
that though I have a corrupt heart and much sin, yet 
I do not willingly allow myself in any guile ; that sin 
reigns not, that there is sincere opposition made to it, 
and that integrity and uprightness shall preserve me ; 
that though I be not a glorified saint in heaven, I am 
an upright Christian on earth ; that although sin be 
stirring in me, I am not a slave to it ; that though I 
have too much hypocrisy, I am not a hypocrite. This 
soul of mine can say with Job, ' Thou knowest I am 
not wicked;' and with David, *I have not wickedly 
departed from my God.' " 


" Seventhhj, My soul, thou mayest be upright in 
avoiding sin, and not willingly allow the gratification 
of any sensual appetite ; but what is all this to the 
purpose, seeing thou art daily sinning ? Do not the 
scriptures say, * Cursed is every one that continuetli 
not in all thins's written in the book of the law to do 
them ?' What art thou then better for thy fighting 
against and mourning for sin, seeing thou art daily 
overtaken by it ? Canst thou truly say thou committest 
any sin against thy will ? and if thou couldst, what 
will that advantage thee before the pure and holy God? 
Will thy honest mind give him satisfaction for violating 
his laws ? Will thy purpose to sin no more, procure a 
dispensation to sin again, or absolution for past of- 
fences? Will thy repentings and conflicts appease 
God's wrath, justify thy person, or save thy soul ? 
Ans. I know that when I have done all, if that were 
possible, I am still an unprofitable servant ; it would 
be but duty, and doing duty will pay no debt ; what- 
soever I may do or suffer will bear no proportion to 
infinite justice wronged by my sins. "What I do, and 
the strength whereby I act is not my own, but my 
Lord's ; by the grace of God I am what I am, and do 
what I do ; yea, my exertions for God, and strivings 
against sin and Satan are defective and mixed with 
abundance of vanity. The graces of the Sjiirit, as 
exercised by me, are too short a garment to cover my 
naked soul, and are as filthy rags that need cleansing, 
and therefore cannot cleanse me. Woe is me f I am a 
man of unclean lips, and nothing I do is free from 
pollution ; if I justify myself my own mouth will con- 
demn me. If my goodness were perfect it would be 
finite, and could bear no proportion to infinite justice. 
The righteousness by which a sinner is justified, m.ust be 

Q 2 


commensurate with the infinite holiness and justice of 
the great God ; and this is what God hath provided in 
his gospel. Christ is become ' the Lord our righteous- 
ness ;' and ' by him all that believe are justified from 
all things, from which we could not be justified by the 
law of Moses ;' for God 'hath made him to be sin for 
us, who knew no sin ; that we might be made the 
righteousness of God in him.'" 

The treatment experienced by the Nonconformists 
after the calling in of the licenses, varied at different 
times and in different parts of the country. Some- 
times a disposition was manifested by those in power, 
to attempt their comprehension within the pale of the 
establishment by concessions on both sides ; but these 
measures invariably proved abortive. At other times, 
there appeared a determination in the magistracy to 
enforce the penal laws with their utmost rigour. Oc- 
casionally the Parliament appeared disposed to show 
lenity towards their dissenting brethren, and some 
leading men in the House of Commons spoke in their 
favour, but were not able to bring any thing to ma- 
turity. In some parts of the country, ill-natured per- 
sons were on the alert to disturb, if not prevent, their 
fellow subjects in the peaceable exercise of their reli- 
gious rights. "Lord's day, April 13th, 1679," says 
Mr. Heywood, " I rode to Shaw chapel, and preached 
there to a numerous and attentive congregation with- 
out any disturbance. But at night, I Vv'as apprehended 
by Mr. Thos. Baskervil, high constable, and cairied 
before Mr. Entwistle, of Ormskirk, justice of the peace, 
who treated me very roughlv. Lord, sanctify this 
trial to me, and do me good by it ! I was required to 
give security for my appearance at Manchester the next 
Quarter Sessions, which being done, I was set at li- 


berty. I attended at the Sessions accordingly, was 
called upon and examined, but God in his good 
providence working for nie, I was honourably ac- 

"This month, I took a long journey into Nottingham- 
shire, visited many friends, preached often in dili'erent 
places, and to large audiences. I was admitted into 
the church at J — , and preached before Sir Ralph 
Knio-ht, from these words : ' Whosoever doth not bear 
his cross and come after me, cannot be my disciple.' God 
graciously helped me through the whole of what I had 
to do, and gave me a prosperous journey. Part of my 
business was to visit my son Eliezer, whom Providence 
has fixed in that part of the covmtry." 

Oct. iG'th in this year, was observed by Mr. H. as a 
day of thanksgiving, not on account of any remarkable 
occurrence, but for the general mercies enjoyed by him 
and his family, when he indulged himself in the fol- 
lowing pious meditations : " 1 have now waited on 
God as a Christian many years, and as a preacher near 
thirty years, with many tears, temptations, wants, and 
weaknesses. I was engaged to the people of Coley in 
1650, and having taken a review of many events dur- 
ing this long period, it has made a strong impression on 
my mind, so that I have observed this day, as a day of 
thanksgiving, with above thirty of my special friends 
in my house at Northowram ; and on the evening of 
this solemn day, I am bound in spirit to make a re- 
cognition of God's singular favours to me during my 
four apprenticeships with this my dearly beloved peo- 
ple. It is true I am conscious of many sins in all this 
time, for which my soul hath been grieved, and which, 
I humbly hope, God hath pardoned through the blood 
of the Mediator, my dear Saviour. I shall only go 
over some remarkable providences, as a landscape, the 


review of which is pleasant to ine, and may support 
my faith and promote my gratitude." 

" 1. With grateful recollection I look back on the 
unanimous invitation I received, when I commenced 
my stated ministry, notwithstanding the numerous im- 
perfections which must have been visible in such a 
stripling as I then was. 2. The dijiosition which led 
me to accept that invitation must have come from 
above, for previously I had no inclination to take up 
my residence in this district. 3. God found me a con- 
venient residence, where I had many opportunities of 
gaining experience both by religious society and other- 
wise, by seeing the beauty of holiness and the evil of 
sin, and both were of great use to me. 4. I had some 
aged christian friends, from whose converse I received 
much advantage, who were careful of me and faithful 
to me, for which I have cause to bless God while I 
have a day to live. 5. God inclined my heart in a 
year or two to seek a regular admission into the minis- 
terial office by solemn ordination and imposition of the 
hands of the Presbytery. This was so affectingly carried 
on by fasting and jwayer, that it convinced some at the 
time, and hath assured me since, that it was God's 
way. 6. The Lord raised me up out of a dangerous 
fever, when I imagined I was in the very pangs of 
death ; but God restored me from death to life that I 
might show forth his praise, and proclaim his will in 
the land of the living. 7. My dear Lord did graciously 
prevent temi)tations, and deliver from falling into gross 
and scandalous sins, thereby preventing a reproach on 
the gospel, a stain on my rej)utation, and a stumbling 
block in my way of doing good. 8. God knows in 
v/hat chambers and fields I waited on him, what 
ejaculations, self-communings, prayers and tears at- 
tended my retirement. 9. God helped me to study 


hard, to read much, and take jiains with my sermons 
in younger days, and Uiere was more than ordinary 
need, for I had not enjoyed such advantages as many 
others ; and in some measure God blessed my studies 
and plain style of preaching. 10. God hath wonder- 
fully succeeded my humble efforts in the conviction and 
conversion of souls. I shall never forget many who 
with troubled consciences came to me, and though soma 
of those persons have fallen off, some have gone to 
heaven and others are on the road : blessed, blessed be 
my God. 11. God gave me for a wife the precious 
daughter of a distinguished father, who was spared to 
me six years, and by whom I had given me three living 
sons ; two still living. She was a singular help to me 
in my work, but she was fitter for heaven than earth, 
and she is now with God. 12. By the assistance of 
my dear and reverend father Angier, I set up discipline 
and restored the Lord's supper at Coley, which had 
been long neglected, and unsuccessfully attempted 
by my predecessors. 13. When I was turned off 
from my public work, I was in debt, and many of 
my people forsook me ; but in the year 1665, the 
time of banishment, I got clear, went forward and 
never have been behind since, though ray expences 
have been great. 14. When I was excommunicated, 
and not permitted to go to church nor chapel to hear 
sermons, a few pious persons spent the sabbath with 
me in my own house, and one evening in the week. 
At these seasons God surprisingly melted my heart, so 
that I cannot say, I ever had so much enjoyment all 
my life ; the worse men were, the better was God to 
me. 15. By the Five-mile Act, I had to travel abroad 
in the world, by which I obtained much excellent ac- 
quaintance, unceasing employment, and comfortable 
supplies, so that I preached usually every other Lord's 


day in some public place in the most dangerous times, 
and God wonderfully secured me ; what men designed 
for hurt, God turned to advantage. 16. In that diffi- 
cult time, 1667, God gave me another very amiable 
companion. I found her to be a pious, useful, faithful 
wife, whom God hath continued as a rich mercy to 
me, my sons, and the church of God ; a fellow traveller 
who partakes with me in my mercies and afflictions for 
the gospel : blessed be my God for her. 17. God 
smiled on my sons at school, opened a way for their 
education, gave me the means of supporting them 
several years, kept them in safety, assisted his servants 
to pray for them, and, though I had my fears, he hath 
given me hopes relative to their piety, settled them in 
desirable places, and made them useful : blessed be my 
good God. 18. At Coley-hall we had some encourage- 
ment, blended however with some inconveniences. God 
enabled me to purchase a house, sent me a license, 
opened the door, and hath kept it open to this day ; 
he made the place convenient, brought in numerous as- 
semblies, maintained his ordinances among us, inclined 
the hearts of his people to encourage us, and kept the 
lamp burning amidst all the storms ; this is the Lord's 
doing. 19. God hath found me work of importance, 
at home and abroad, hath directed me to suitable sub- 
jects, assisted me in my studies, preaching, and travels, 
prevented dangers and death, succeeded my poor la- 
bours, and made my ministry to be desired in new 
l)laces, where neither I nor others have preached, and 
where I hope God hath some lost sheep to bring in. 
These instances I have enumerated, which might be 
multiplied v/ere I a good arithmetician. Lord, humble 
me for my short comings, accept my praises in the 
course of my ministry, rear more permanent monuments 
to thy glory, and cease not to do good both in me and 


by me. O prepare me for an everlasting day of thanks- 
giving, when I shall have faculties for that work which 
I so imperfectly perform in this vale of tears ! Haste, 
Lord, even so come, Lord Jesus !" 

In January, 1680, Mrs. Hey wood was so severely 
indisposed, that the congregation was obliged for 
several weeks, to assemble at a neighbour's house ; 
and Mr. Eliezer Heywood, who was coming to visit 
her, was taken so ill at Derby, that his life appeared 
for a time to hang in suspense : but it pleased God to 
have mercy on them and restore them. " God visited 
my wife," says Mr. Heywood, " with a violent fever, 
Jan. I6th, and she continued ill a month, so that four 
Lord's days I was kept out of my own house, and 
preached at W. Clay's. My son, Eliezer, was also seized 
about the same time with the ague, but came to us March 
4th. The day after, we kept a solemn day of thanks- 
giving to pay our vows. I preached on Psal. Ixv. 1, 
and God helped in the work." In recording the cir- 
cumstances connected with this visitation, he observes, 
that " when Mrs. H. was very weakly, she wished me 
to go into another room and pray for her. I did so, 
and God graciously helped me to give her up into his 
hands as to a kind father, and so was satisfied. My 
son, Eliezer, coming to see his mother, fell sick by the 
way and was obliged to stay at Mrs. Cotton's, at 
Derby. His ague fits came upon him every other 
day, and brought him very low ; but friends dealt 
very affectionately and tenderly with him. O my soul, 
stand admiring the divine bounty ! God hath done 
great things for me, and dandled me on the lap of 
smiling providences. Thou hadst become out of order; 
senselessness and security had seized upon thee ; hard- 
heartedness, vanity, unbelief, and forgetfulness of God 
had cast thee into a spiritual lethargy ; and this rod 


was seasonable and necessary to awaken, for nothing 
else would do it ; in faithfulness to my soul God saw 
fit to correct. Blessed be his name, that free grace 
took such care of me as to chastise me ; there was 
need that I should be in heaviness for a season. O 
what riches of grace, that the rod attained its end ! 
My heart was melted, conscience awakened, grace 
quickened, corruptions searched and resisted, duties 
were performed in a more lively manner, the spirit of 
prayer was poured upon me, so that through grace, I 
poured out my soul before the face of the Lord. He 
heard prayer on behalf of my wife, kept the fever 
from seizing her brain, gave her patience and free 
submission to the Lord's pleasure, found many friends 
to help, quickened the spirits of Christians in prayer 
for her, in due time completed her recovery, and helped 
her heart in some suitable acknowledgement. My God 
did also wisely order the circumstances of my son's 
affliction ; he was cast into a religious and kind family, 
where they were as careful of him as of their own 
child ; and the Lord dealt gently with him ; blessed 
be his name. ' My soul shall make her boast in the 
Lord ; the humble shall hear thereof and be glad. I 
sought the Lord and he lieard me, and delivered me 
from all my fears. This poor man cried, and the 
Lord heard him, and delivered him out of all his 
troubles.' O what a God do I worship ! Ready at 
hand to help, a present help in time of trouble. Who, 
or what am I, that the Lord should deal thus graciously 
with me ? I must say, while I live, ' it is good for 
me to draw nigh unto God. What shall I render unto 
the Lord for all his benefits towards me ?' My soul, 
love thou the Lord, because he hath heard thy voice. 
O call upon him continually ! O my soul ! thou hast 
succeeded so well, and obtained such good alms at this 


door, find the way to it again, and bring an offering 
daily of praise and prayer ; so shalt thou receive some- 
thing better than thou bringest. Return unto thy rest, 
centre in God, look no where else for happiness ; in 
him thou mayest have the desire of thy heart. But 
withal, I do solemnly charge thee to walk holiiy, 
watchfully, and usefully before the Lord in the land 
of the living. Take heed to thy ways, make good thy 
promises, seek more power against corruptions, pray 
more frequently, seriously, and affectionately, converse 
more spiritually and profitably, clear up thy interest 
in Christ and title to heaven more carefully, and get 
prepared for glory. O my soul, mercy calls for duty ; 
new mercies bestowed upon thee require new obser- 
vances from thee ; thou canst never do too much for 
God, nor make sufficient returns to him, for thou art 
sadly defective ; thou must die in thy Lord's debt, and 
he will put thee into a capacity of continually paying 
the sweet debt of thankfulness to all eternity. How 
often hast thou forfeited all thy mercies, and incurred 
God's just displeasure ? How oft hast thou provoked 
him to make a legal seizure of thy borrowed enjoy- 
ments ? But my Lord hath yet spared, and mercifully 
continued these desirable connections ; let him alone 
have the glory, and my soul the benefit of them." 

So deep were the impressions made on his grateful 
heart by these tokens of the divine favour to him and 
his, that he resolved to renew his solemn vows to God 
in writing, but was prevented accomplishing his design 
till the 15tli of March, the return of the day on which 
he had been baptized, fifty years before, when he thus 
expressed the feelings of his mind: — 

" Eternal Jehovah ! The God to whom belong the 
issues from death, in whose hands our breath is, and 
whose are all our ways, who killest and makcst alive, 


who alone canst absolve and condemn ; I, thy poor 
servant, the workmanship of thy hands, have been 
preserved by thy wonderful providence fifty years in 
the world, in various places, companies, conditions, re- 
lations and afflictions ; have been wonderfully preserved 
from suffering shipwreck on this boisterous sea, and 
have pressed without harm through the fiery furnace of 
sharp trials, public and personal, spiritual and natural. 
Thrice I have been in a raging fever, yet by a miracle 
of mercy have been raised from death to life ; I have 
had many a weary day of sickness ; have travelled 
thousands of miles, and had many falls, but never have 
broken a bone ; have buried father and mother, sisters 
and brothers, a wife and child, yet my life has been 
given me for a prey ; I have escaped many sad ac- 
cidents, known and unknown ; I have been twice 
exconnnunicated, thrice imprisoned, once plundered, 
banished from my own house, often sought after with 
warrants, many times made to flee, suspended from my 
public preaching, have ventured in the face of apparent 
dangers, been threatened, watched, and often vexed by 
censures, railing, and scorn from those that were at 
ease: yet my bow abides in strength, being strengthened 
by the hand of the mighty God of Jacob. I have had 
studyings, watchings, fastings, preachings, real bur- 
dens, frightful imaginations, discouragements and dis- 
appointments in my ministerial work ; I have been in 
low condition in the world at some seasons, have had 
debts, cares and fears about my sons ; arid whatever 
else is wont to befall a man, or a Christian, or a minis- 
ter, the care of the churches abroad, and my own flock 
at home, fear of being unfaithful, unskilful, and unsuc- 
cessful ; add to all these the daily burdens and temp- 
tations arising from my ejection and continued exclu- 
sion from public employment above seventeen years, 


while the people in some places are perishing for lack 
of knowledge, and wliile some of my old hearers are 
going towards hell, and I have not liberty to preach 
to them : all these, and numbers more of troubles, God 
hath helped me safely to pass through, and hath main- 
tained me in my work ; blessed be God. Besides all 
these, I have of late had alarms respecting my wife 
and sons, the elder with a dangerous consumption, the 
younger with an ague, and my wife with a fever ; yet 
God hath spared them in answer to my poor, Aveak re- 
quests ; blessed be his name. And now, O my Lord, 
having obtained help of thee, I continue unto this day, 
as a monument of divine patience, care, and mercy, and 
know not what things will be my lot the remainder of 
my days, nor am I solicitous what my God will do 
with me, so that I may finish my course with joy and 
the ministry I have received of the Lord Jesus. My 
life is not dear to me in comparison with the gospel ; 
my great fear is, lest I should deny my Lord or his 
truth, in this adulterous generation ; and though the 
most unworthy to do or suffer any thing for my Lord, 
yet I have given up myself wholly to thee, my God. 
Thine I am, by many thousand obligations which thou 
hast laid on me, and which I have laid on myself in 
solemn days of fasting, thanksgiving, and sacraments, 
in times of affliction, and on the receipt of mercies ; 
and I do not repent of this deed of gift, which I have 
so often subscribed with my hand ; and if it were to do 
again I would do it, for the Lord hath requited me for 
all my poor, weak service and suffering, if he were not 
to give me any more reward. My greatest trouble is, 
that I have so often departed from my God by an evil 
heart of unbelief, that I have not performed my vows, 
maintained such a sense of his omnipresence, holiness, 
and power, nor exercised faith, love, self-denial, and 


joy in God as my soul desires. I am really ashamed 
of my folly and faults, and solicit pardon through the 
blood of Jesus, and divine assistance for future per- 
formances. Thou great Jehovah ! who knowest the 
secrets of the heart, make me sound in thy statutes 
that I be not ashamed. I once again, put my soul 
into thy hands. Brighten up thy image in me, assist 
me further in duty, quicken my heart in thy ways, 
pardon my short comings, heal my diseases, give me 
perseverance, and crown me with glory. 

" Thy worthless servant, 


The cause of Popery about this time appeared to 
gain ground ; popish plots were frequently contrived, 
and the Duke of York being a violent papist, every 
zealous friend to the Protestant interest was in a state 
of alarm. The Parliament, aware of this situation of 
things, were inclined to exempt the Nonconformists 
from the penalties to which they were liable, and to 
exclude the duke from the succession. The king was 
greatly dissatisfied with their proceedings, and hastily 
prorogued them ; but before they rose, the House of 
Commons came to the following resolution : " Re- 
solved, ?iem. con. That it is the opinion of this House, 
that the Acts of Parliament made in the reigns of Queen 
Elizabeth and King James against popish recusants, 
ought not to be extended against Protestant Dis- 
senters; and that the prosecution of Protestant Dis- 
senters upon the penal laws, is at this time grievous 
to the subject, a weakening of the Protestant interest, 
an encouragement to Popery, and dangerous to the 
peace of the kingdom." Notwithstanding the fears 
entertained of the increase of Popery, which were well 
founded, the persecution of the Nonconformists was 


increased by the violent spirit of the high church dig- 
nitaries. Many pamphlets were published to repre- 
sent the dissenters as schismatics and rebels ; and even 
Dr. Stillingfleet, dean of St. Paul's, who had generally 
been considered a moderate man, preached and printed 
a sermon, in 1680, entitled, " The Mischief of Separa- 
tion." Orders were sent from the king and council to 
suppress all conventicles, and the enemies of the Non- 
conformists were inspired with fresh courage in every 
part of the kingdom. Mr. Hey wood had not experienced 
much trouble from the recalling of licenses ; but on 
August 15th, 1680, he was cited before the Consistory 
Court, at York, with his wife, and several of his 
friends, for not receiving the sacrament at the parish 
church ; and because they did not appear, they were 
all excommunicated. The excommunication was pub- 
lished at Halifax church, the 24tli of October following. 
In those dark and foreboding days, a few young 
men of piety and ministerial ability entered on the 
work of the ministry, among the despised and perse- 
cuted Nonconformists, and Mr. Heywood was some- 
times engaged in taking a part in their ordinations. 
Mr. Timothy Jollie, of Sheffield,* who afterwards be- 

* Mr. Timothy Jollie, soon after his ordination, married Eliza- 
beth Fisher, the daughter of his predecessor. About the close of 
the following year, (1682) he was committed close prisoner to the 
Castle, at York, where he remained some months. To that dis- 
mal place his affectionate wife accompanied him, and was there 
delivered of a daughter. After various discouragements and 
troubles, the fmy of his persecutors Avas happily restrained by the 
Revolution, and he passed the remainder of his days in peace and 
extensive usefidness, as a minister, and especially as a tutor. He 
died April 28th, 1714, having survived Mrs. J. five years. His 
sermon, preached and published on account of the death of his 
father, is now very scarce. Dr. Grosvenor, who had been one of 
his students, gives the following character of him : " He was a 
man of aii excellent spirit, of great spirituality and sweetness of 


came the distinguished tutor of the dissenting academy, 
at Attercliffe, Mr. Heywood's spiritual son in the gos- 
pel, was one whose ordination he not only attended, 
but of which he has left the following account : "April 
25th, 1681, Mr. Thomas Jollie came to my house, ac- 
cording to former appointment, and lodged with us. 
The day after, we rode to Sheffield upon a solemn oc- 
casion, the setting apart of Mr. Timothy Jollie, chosen 
to be the pastor of the church in that place, of which 
Messrs. Fisher and Durant* had been pastors before. 
Beside us two, there were Messrs. Hancock and Bloom 

temper. The orders of his house were strict and regular ; and 
few tutors maintained them better, and with so little severity. 
Every thing here was sytematical. He had a charming voice, 
flowing, and of a musical sound ; a natural eloquence ; his elo- 
cution and gesture were such as would recommend any orator. 
The pathetic was sometimes so heightened with that divine 
enthusiasm, which is peculiar to true devotion, that he would 
make our hearts glow with a fervour which he kindled in the 
breasts of those who endeavoured all they could not to be moved 
by him. There have been tutors of greater learning, who have 
been capable of laying out a greater compass of education ; but, 
at the same time, it must be acknowledged, that the relish for 
practical religion, that devotional spirit which was so improved 
by his example, that sweetness of tei^per and benevolent turn of 
mind, which a soul of any thing the same make insensibly 
catches from such an example, are things not every vvhere to be 
met with ; and yet have such an influence towards our usefulness 
and acceptance as ministers, as cannot possibly be supplied by any 
other qualities." 

* ]Mr. Fisher was ejected from the parish church in Sheffield. 
After his ejectment, he was in frequent troubles and very severely 
used. His long and cruel imprisonment brought on him an ill- 
ness in which he languished four or five months, and then died in 
January, 1666. He was succeeded by ]\Ir. Durant, ejected from 
the vicarage of Crowle, in Lincolnshire. He accepted the pas- 
toral office of this Independent church, in 1669, and continued to 
serve them in the gospel till within about a month of his death, 
which took place, February 12th, 1678, in the 71st year of his age. 
See Nonconformist JMemorial, vol. iii. p. 447, and vol. ii. p. 414. 


called in for assistance, who came early on Wednesday 
morning. We all consulted together how to perform 
that service. They unanimously appointed me mode- 
rator, though I would have avoided it. I began the 
public service with prayer, about ten o'clock ; and my 
God did graciously assist me in that duty near an 
hour. Then we put Mr. Joliie to the work of preach- 
ing, for a trial of his gifts. He preached on Isaiah 
lix. 1, 2, very satisfactorily. We dismissed the people, 
and then engaged in the work of examination, in which 
we spent about three hours, going through logic, phi- 
losophy, languages, divinity, &c. Through an over- 
sight, he had no position in Latin allotted to him ; 
however, something was done extempore, by way of 
disputation. An infantes omnes baptizorum etsi scan- 
dalizantium sint baptizandi?* Having disputed on 
this subject, we parted at near six o'clock, and ap- 
pointed to meet at the same place at seven o'clock the 
next morning. (Besides Mr. JoUie, we were desired 
to try the gifts of two others, Mr. David Noble, for- 
merly a schoolmaster at Morley, and Mr. Robert Dick- 
enson, an English scholar. The former of these en- 
gaged in prayer, and preached on Rom. viii. 1, very 
profitably ; but we wanted time with reference to the 
latter.) The next morning, Mr. Hancock went to 
prayer, and after him, Mr. Bloom. Most of the mem- 
bers of the society were present, only we were in- 
formed, that two were dissatisfied with ordination by 
presbyters, and thought it should be by ruling elders 
in the name of the people ; but no notice was taken 
of them or their opinion, and we went on with our 
work. I propounded such queries to Mr. Joliie as are 
prescribed ; to which he answered. Then his father 

* Whether all infants of persons baptized, but notoriously ir- 
regular in their conduct, should be baptized ? 
VOL. I. R 


gave him up to God in this office hy prayer, which he 
(lid very pathetically. After that, he kneeling down, 
God helped me to pray over him on his actual ordi- 
nation by imposition of hands ; and there were con- 
siderably strong feelings excited in all present. At 
the close of that solemnity, I proceeded to give the 
exhortation, which was grounded on 1 Tim. iv. 15. 
God helped me in that work in some good measure, and 
I concluded with prayer. The elder of the church then 
desired all who were not of that society to withdraw; 
so most of the people dispersed, for there was a full 
assembly. We all withdrew for about half an hour, 
when one of the society read a letter from Mr. Griffith,* 
of London, dismissing Mr. Jollie from his church to 
the Sheffield people. Their elder then spoke in the 
name of the people expressing their desires, that he 
would accept the pastoral office over them, to which 
the rest signified their consent by lifting up the hand ; 
and Mr. Jollie signified his willingness to serve them 
in the gospel. Afterwards, Mr. Jollie's father dis- 
coursed on the relative duties of pastor and people, 
wherein he enumerated thirty or forty appellations 
given to ministers in scripture, applying them dis- 
tinctly and very usefully. When he had done, his son 
concluded all with prayer, very sensibly and sweetly. 
The v»^hole company was then dismissed, we having 
continued in the Lord's work from eight o'clock in the 
morning till eight at night, except about half an hour's 
intermission between four and five o'clock. We gave 
him an instrument on parchment, under our hands, of 
what we had done for him that 28th of April, 1681." 

* ]\Ir. Griffith was formei'ly of the Charter-house, in London, 
and afterwards preached at Girdler's-liall. See Nonconformist 
jMemorial, vol. i. p. 107 : Wilson's History of Dissenting Churches, 
vol. ii. p. 516 — 518. 


Mr. Heywood, like every faithful minister of the 
gospel, was very anxious for the success of his minis- 
try, and, though he was remarkably useful in the con- 
version and edification of souls, he v/as sometimes dis- 
tressed lest he should have laboured in vain. To en- 
courage him to go forward in the good work in which 
he was engaged, his divine Master frequently furnished 
him with gratifying intelligence of success, particularly 
at those seasons when most discouraged. On one of 
these occasions, he thus expresses himself: " I was ex- 
traordinarily employed in Lancashire, preaching almost 
every day, for nearly a fortnight, in several places about 
Manchester, Bolton, and Rochdale ; I laid out myself 
in weeping and labours, but had no encouragement 
concerning the success of my ministry. The last day, 
Sept. 30th, 1681, returning homewards, I preached near 
Heywood Chapel, to a numerous assembly. There I 
heard of a circumstance that exceedingly cheered me, 
which was, that Mr. Chadderton, now a serious Chris- 
tian and famous preacher, though living privately with 
Mr. Sargeant, at Stand, was wrought upon by a ser- 
mon I preached at Underwood, near Rochdale, many 
years ago, and which I never heard of till that day. 
The like I heard also of Mr. Timothy Hodgson, who 
owns me as an instrument of good to his soul. And 
is it so, O my soul, is any one wrought upon by the 
word in thy mouth ? Hath God owned thy labours 
for good to any, yea, so many, and to such as tend 
towards the sacred office of the ministry? O adore 
and admire free grace in it ! Give God the glory. O 
may I speak, live, and walk to his praise whose work 
alone it is from first to last ! Who, or what was I that 
God should single me out for that high office ? Grace 
is more magnified in me than in many others ; but 
God will do what he pleaseth. He can pour his gifts 

11 2 


into the emptiest cask, and give success to the most 
imlikely instruments. The silly ass shall forbid the 
madness of a prophet, and the crowing cock convince 
a fallen apostle, if a divine power accompany them. 
The walls of Jericho shall fall down at the sound of 
the rams' horns, and Gideon's three hundred shall 
defeat the liost of the Midianites ; yea, the mere break- 
ing of the pitchers, shining of the lamps, and sound- 
ing of the trumpets shall overcome the enemies. The 
apostle, alluding to this, saith, ' We have this treasure 
in earthen vessels,' &c. 2 Cor. iv. 7- O that ever free 
grace, wliicli had great choice among the sons of men, 
should single out such a poor worm as I, make and 
account me faithful, putting me into the ministry, 
bring me in by the scriptural door, make me laborious 
in my studies, faithful to sound principles, conscien- 
tious in practice, compassionate to sinners, abundant 
in labours, and in some of the thirty things which 
Paul speaks of himself, in 2 Cor. xi. Who am I, that 
God should engage my heart to the suffering party, 
and to trust in him when so many turn aside to 
worldly preferments ! Who am I, that God should 
find me out suitable and full employment, when so 
many choice ministers would gladly work, but cannot ; 
for no one calls them to labour in the vineyard, and 
they stand idle in the market-place all the day (or ra- 
ther this night) of persecution and banishment from 
public assemblies ! Yea, lastly, who am I, that God 
should give such blessed success, when many better 
than I labour all the day and catch nothing? O won- 
der of grace ! I cannot say, ' I hai'e laboured in vain, 
and spent my strength for nought.' Some souls are 
gathered to Christ by me, even by me, the unwor- 
thiest and weakest of all my brethren ; yea, some are 
gained who may be the means of gaining others ! O 


free grace ! Aaron's rod doth blossom and bring forth 
almonds ! When Peter was restored, he sought to 
convert and strengthen his brethren ; and when David 
had a right spirit renewed in him, he taught trans- 
gressors God's ways, and sinners were converted to 
him. O that these converts may feel what they say, 
and speak what they feel ! May these lights be set on 
a hill to give light to others, and these springs be 
opened to refresh the city of God ! O may the same 
power that forms saints and appoints ministers, at 
length bring them into sweet communion in ordi- 
nances ! " 

Mr. Heywood was alarmed by the frequent illness 
of his son Eliezer, which not only affected his body, 
but had such an influence sometimes on his mind as to 
unfit him for a season for the discharge of his duties. 
He had two severe fits of illness in 1680, and was 
again visited with sickness in the autumn of 1681 ; at 
which time his father writes : " My son Eliezer having 
been under various infirmities of body, temptations of 
Satan, desertion of spirits, and exceeding despondencies, 
wrote to me from Walling-wells complaining sadly. 
He came over to me and hoped he should find relief 
by going into Craven, but found none. He was much 
discouraged, went to God much in secret prayer, and 
in other duties, lamenting a hard heart and God's with- 
drawing himself. At last we had a solemn day of 
fasting and prayer at J. Greaves's, where he sadly be- 
wailed his case. I was much troubled for him, and 
concluding the service of the day, God helped my heart 
much in pleading for him. The day after, as we rode 
together, he told me God gave him some token for 
good in that duty, and the evening after, when going 
to prayer with us in the family, he was much carried 
out in thankfulness to God for the smiles of his face 


and encouragement in secret, desiring to give up him- 
self to the ministry in the meanest place. Blessed, 
blessed be God. We designed a day of thankfulness 
to God, Sept. 13th, and the day before, our Lord gave 
us another mercy in reference to him ; for having di- 
rections from Dr. Carl, of Manchester, to relieve him 
of his quartan ague that had been hanging upon him 
eight months, the Lord so blessed the medicine that 
we have good hopes of his recovery. We spent the 
day in thanksgiving, and our God made it a sweet 
heart-melting day. Eliezer prayed and praised God 
affectionately, but John exceeded. My heart was ex- 
ceedingly drawn out, so that I have seldom met with 
the like in company. O what a time was it for about 
six hours ! Surely God's presence was with us ! Let 
him have the glory." 

" And now what shall I say ! My dear Lord hath 
outdone my thoughts, prevented us with his blessings, 
counteracted our fears and deserts, and hath magnified 
his word above all his name. How many mercies 
come crowding in upon us ! Health of body, peace of 
conscience, operations of grace, and hopes of glory. 
So well doth our Lord love a thankful heart, that he 
gives new matter of gratitude when he sees us aiming 
at it ; the very design of paying our vows pleaseth him, 
and brings in fresh mercies ; in the day of our gratitude 
we had new grounds of gratitude. Health of body is 
sweet, especially when it comes as a return of prayer. 
Comfort to a drooping spirit is very desirable as a per- 
formance of promise ; but the workings of the spirit 
of adoption in the hearts and lijis of my children is 
transcendent love, it is the fruit of Christ's purchase, 
an evidence of grace, and a forerunner of glory, es- 
pecially when it comes as light after darkness, and as 
a resurrection from the dead. O that ever my Lord 


should deal thus well with me ! God hath known my 
fears and prayers, cares and tears for these very mercies. 
He saw in secret and has rewarded openly. O that 
ever God should give me children, spare their lives, 
make them capable of learning, train them ujd hitherto, 
sanctify them by his grace, employ them in his work, 
set one of them af)art in his way, make the other at 
last willing and desirous of that office against all dis- 
couragements within and without, make them choose 
the persecuted way of nonconformity in such a day as 
this is, not consulting flesh and blood, but opposing all 
arguments fetched from thence, by the glorious and 
genuine purpose of the ministry, begging of the Lord 
that he would trust them with an opportunity of la- 
bouring for souls, though in the most mean and con- 
temptible places : this, this is to me greater satisfaction 
than if they were preferred to the highest dignities in 
the church. ' My soul doth magnify the Lord, and 
my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For he 
hath regarded the low estate of his servant ; for be- 
hold, from henceforth all generations shall call me 
blessed,' &c. Luke i. 46 — 50. Lord, thou hast given 
me more comfort in giving me and mine covenant 
grace, than if thou hadst made us earthly princes. O 
for a thankful heart ! O for an obedient life ! ' What 
shall I render to the Lord for all his benefits towards 
me, &c.' Psal. cxvi. 12, 16. Now, even now, God be- 
gins to hear the prayers of ancestors, now the graces 
that flourished in mother and grandmother spring up 
in young Timothies. May the blessing of their father 
prevail among the blessings of my progenitors. Who 
knows what a reserve my Lord hath for his church in 
my sons and their companions ? Lord, have respect to 
the rising generation. Let thy Urim and Thummim, 


(light and perfection) be in the minds and hearts of 
these consecrated to thee." 

Every duty connected with the ministerial office was 
diligently observed by Mr. Heywood. He was often 
called to attend the bed of affliction and death ; and 
on one of these occasions the scene he describes is truly 
awful. "Lord's day Dec. 4th, 1681, J. L. came to me 
with a message for me from Mr. J. Hanson, preacher 
at Honley, v/ho being sick and startled on account of 
his sins much desired to see me ; I went the day after. 
He was much affected at the sight of me, embraced 
me, and asked me to tell him what true repentance is. 
I described it, both in discourse and by repeating a 
sermon from 2 Cor. vii. 10, concerning the mistakes of 
men about it. He told me he was sorry for his sins 
from his heart, &c. He lamented he had so rashly 
entered on a work he was not fit for, adding, that he 
thought there was not a priest in the country, that 
preached in public places, who was a minister of Jesus 
Christ. I told him, I hoped some were good men. O, 
said he, Mr. Heywood, it had been happy if I had 
given over preaching and betaken myself to some other 
calling, when I was so alarmed by your preaching 
many years ago in this chapel ; but I took it up for a 
livelihood, and have been very negligent of my people's 
souls. I came into this country and married a wife 
with a great estate, and began to keep gentlemen's 
company, spent all my property, ran into debt, and 
could not stay in the country but fled into Cheshire, 
I went to be Col. Lees' chaplain, a house of excessive 
drinking, this broke my constitution, and since my re- 
turn I have been much addicted to liquor. He then 
desired my counsel and prayers. I spoke to him as I 
was able, and went to prayer with him that night and 


in the morning. My soul bled for him, for I found 
him very ignorant, but much awakened. Intemper- 
ance had brought on him a desperate surfeit and con- 
sumption. Several persons were present and were 
much affected. What the Lord will do with him I 
cannot tell, but I will pray and wait for an answer of 
prayer and success on my poor endeavours. [He was 
buried Dec. 27th, 1681.] 

" O my soul, what improvement dost thou make of 
this providence ? It cost thee some difficulty to travel 
eight miles, in bad ways, to visit this stranger ; but 
thou didst comply with a call, and glad wast thou of 
such an opportunity of doing good. As God helped 
me, I laid his sin home upon him, his rash entrance, 
negligent management, ill example, mispent time in 
the ministry ; his dishonouring God, hardening the 
wicked, damning his own soul, &c. I confess I was 
very defective, and could not see the desired effect ; 
and God hath hereby afresh convinced me, that it is 
not in man's power to work grace, and that of all per- 
sons, profane preachers are the most unlikely to be 
wrought upon, God in justice denying grace to despis- 
ers of grace. This poor man, I fear, is not rare as a 
black swan, for he hath too many companions amongst 
the depraved clergy of England. O how many aspire 
at the office and maintenance, but are strangers to the 
work and conscientiousness of ministers ! How many 
enter in not by the door, but some other way, and so 
are thieves and robbers in their entrance and progress, 
and draw on them the guilt of the blood of souls ! 
Lord, what a sad state is this land in ! Blesssed Je- 
sus, come with thy scourge of small cords, and drive 
out the buyers and sellers from the temple ; rouse up 
the slumbering shepherds that ought to watch the sheei), 
but who drive them from the mount of God into for- 


bidden paths of sin ; startle their consciences, lest 
death leave them helpless and hopeless. Lord, thrust 
out loiterers, or turn them to be labourers, and employ- 
in thy harvest those that have been unemployed. Do 
thou build up Zion, and appear in thy glory, and let 
the earth be covered with the knowledge of God, as 
the waters cover the sea. Why may not, even now, 
thy almighty power change the hearts of profane 
preachers, as when a multitude of priests became obe- 
dient to the faith ? O poor souls, that have such blind 
guides ! But, O sadder case of such dumb dogs that 
cannot bark ; yea, greedy dogs that can never have 
enough, but fill themselves with strong drink ! O that 
God would give his people pastors according to his 
own heart, that may feed them with knowledge and 
understanding ! God forbid that I should advance 
myself above others, but I will not deny what my dear 
Lord hath done for me ; by the grace of God I am 
what I am. Distinguishing grace hath counted me 
faithful, and put me into the ministry, and hath made 
me faithful in it; I thank my Lord Jesus Christ. 
Lord, let this example quicken me in my Master's 
work, and further my good account. Amen, amen." 

When he had entered on the year 1682, Mr. H. 
took a solemn review of the transactions of the preced- 
ing year, and says : " I find that the special hand of 
my dear Lord hath been upon me for good in his work, 
wherein he hath helped me to be abundant. In the year 
1681, God hath helped me in preaching on week days 
105 sermons, keeping 50 fasts and 9 thanksgiving days, 
and in ti-a veiling 1400 miles about my Master's work. 
Having made this review, I set myself, Jan. 10, 1682, 
to spend some time with my dear Lord in my closet, 
and was from about nine to twelve o'clock in that em- 
ployment. First, I fell on my face, and gave God the 


glory of the preceding year's mercies, for about an 
hour, O what a sweet, melting exercise it was ! Then 
I spent another hour in confessing and bewailing my 
sins that year, and begging pardon and strength. 
Lastly, I read and expounded, as it fell in my course, 
Ezekiel xxxiv, pleading the promises in the latter part 
of it for the church. Reflections — O my soul, mayest 
thou not sing of mercy and judgment ; mercy first, 
and afterwards of judgment ? Sing of both, for God 
hath allayed the sweetness of mercy with a dash of 
wholesome wormwood in thy cup. Thy God remem- 
bers mercy in the midst of judgment, sharply afflicting 
and sweetly supporting, and making all tend to good. 
Blessed be God. O what a year of mercies hath the 
preceding been ! I have ridden many hundred miles 
and met with no dangerous falls ; all my bones do say, 
Lord, who is like to thee ? I have heard of many 
others meeting with great troubles in short journeys 
this year ; but God hath delivered my soul from death, 
mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling. An- 
other year is added to, yet also taken from my life. 
What art thou better, O my soul, at the end than thou 
wast in the beginning of the year ? What increase of 
grace, progress in holiness, and power against corruption, 
hast thou acquired ? What good hast thou attained or 
done to souls ? What additions hast thou made to thy 
stock of knowledge, love to God, faith and repentance? 
God hath been kind to thee ; hast thou been dutiful to 
him, faithful to thy trust, and useful in thy generation? f 

Have thy acts of obedience been daily renewed ? Canst 
thou reflect with comfort on having spent the past 
year? Thou hast been much employed; hast thou 
been well employed ? Canst thou reflect with comfort 
on the manner, as well as the number of thy works for 
God ? Thou hast preached oft ; hast thou preached 


well ? Thou hast put up many prayers ; canst thou 
say they were sincere, believing, and fervent ? Thou 
hast kept many fasts ; were they such as God hath 
chosen ? What frame of spirit hast thou maintained 
in all thy journeys ? What edifying discourse hast 
thou uttered in all the companies thou hast conversed 
with ? Alas ! I may take shame to myself. The sins 
of the last year have been multiplied. It is well if all 
scores between God and thy soul be cleared, when now 
a new year is begun. If the Lord should mark ini- 
quities, who can stand ? I cannot answer him for one 
of a thousand. On attempting to cast up my accounts, 
I find my arithmetic far short of recounting either 
my mercies or sins : David accounts both innumerable, 
and so may I. Mercy hath filled up every hour of the 
day, and every moment of the hour ; and so have my 
transgressions. Alas ! my thanksgiving days have 
been short of my fasting days, and how much more 
short of my mercies ! My repentings have been short 
of my professions of humiliation ; but infinitely short 
of proportion to my sins. How may I sit down won- 
dering, that God hath not shaken me off the hand of 
his providence, as a viper into the fire of hell ! Lord, 
take thou the glory of the last year's mercies, and pardon 
my offences and provocations. Wash away all scores 
in the blood of Jesus. Give my soul the comfort, and 
thy people the advantage of my daily labours in the 
gospel. Give me grace for the services and sufferings 
of the ensuing year. Maintain my liberty one year 
more ; if not, fit me for daily crosses : and if this year 
produce more notable revolutions of providence than 
the preceding in mercy or judgment, O lead me safely 
through all to thy glory and my comfort." 

This year, orders were sent from the king and council 
to suppress all conventicles, which were rigorously ob- 


served in many parts of the kingdom, particularly in 
London and its neighbourhood. The peaceful assem- 
blies of the saints were often disturbed by some hire- 
ling informer, the minister imprisoned, and the hearers 
fined. Warrants were issued by the justices of the 
sessions, to all constables in their district, to search 
those places in which it was most probable that reli- 
gious meetings were held, by the Nonconformists. 
They were to take the preacher and principal hearers 
before some neighbouring justice, that they might be 
fined or sent to prison, on the evidence of the informer 
given on oath. At the sessions, the constables were 
generally called upon to give an account of all the 
conventicles they found, that they might be proceeded 
against. Thus hosts of spies, allured by the hope of 
sharing the spoil, sought out the meeting-places of 
dissenters, and kept them in perpetual fear. Fre- 
quently the officers in Mr. Heywood's township gave 
him intelligence of the hours, they designed to call and 
search his house, and he ordered the times of meeting 
accordingly ; so that while many of his neighbouring 
brethren were disturbed, he enjoyed his liberty. Hav- 
ing experienced so much mercy in his preservation, he 
set apart Aug. 30, 1682, as a day of thanksgiving for 
ten years' liberty in religious exercises, since the date 
of the licenses issued by Charles II. On this day he 
thus wrote : " Notwithstanding many warrants issued 
out against us, as well as others, we have been secured, 
through the moderation of our officers, when all the 
societies round about us have been sadly broken and 

Mr. H. spent much of this year in visiting his 
friends at a distance, and those visits of friendship 
were generally converted into journeys of mercy ; but, 
while occupied with his labours of love, he was fre- 


quently exposed to danger. The appearance of dif- 
ficulty and peril did not, however, frighten him from 
the path of duty. " Lord's day morning, Nov. 5th," 
he says, " heing at R. Forster's, near Horbury, and 
having in my turn designed to preach at Alverthorp, 
that day, I was much helped in secret prayer, and in 
the parlour before day. But R. N. the high-constable, 
with twelve officers, came to disturb us. Yet God 
heard prayer — in assisting near an hour before he 
came ; — in giving us notice and time for dispersing, so 
that they took us not together ; — in preserving me 
out of their hands, when they chiefly aimed to appre- 
hend me, hunted me out in several places, searched the 
house where I was, and the chamber with a lighted 
candle, a bed only being the means to secure me ; — 
and in giving opportunity to preach in the evening to 
a full company." 

At the close of this year, Mr. H. went to visit his 
son, Eliezer, and was invited to accompany the family 
in which his son was chaplain, in a journey to London. 
The invitation was unexpected, but, he says, " I com- 
mended the matter to God in prayer, and my heart 
was much satisfied about it. This appeared very 
strange to me, as I had not the least thought of it when 
I came from home, nor was it possible to consult my 
wife about it. We set out Dec. 25th, and returned to 
Walling- v/ells, Feb. 9th, 1683. I was absent from my 
own house eight v/eeks and a day, during which I 
received many returns of prayer. God satisfied my 
wife about my journey, though it was a surprize to 
her at first. The company I journeyed with was very 
obliging, kind, and tender to me, and God made me of 
some use to them, by praying with them morning and 
evening during the journey. We had fine weather for 
the time of the year, and preservation from accidents. 


God found me hospitable entertainment and many 
affectionate friends. He also gave me suitable work 
in his wise providence, as I had an opportunity of 
praying and preaching, both privately and publicly, 
with safety, though it was a time of great hazard, 
many ministers being disturbed and sent to prison. 
By this visit, I became acquainted with many worthy 
and holy men of God. I preached for Mr. Nathaniel 
Vincent,* the Lord's day after he was apprehended, 
yet no justices nor officers came near to interrupt us. 
Blessed be God. It pleased God, by my preaching 
that day, to set home conviction upon a young man 
in the assembly, and it is hoped that it had a saving 
effect. This is w^ortfi my journey to London ; let God 
have the glory. I visited my son at Garson, and was 
refreshed. I conversed with the company about mat- 
ters of religion as we came down ; what fruit it may 
have I know not, but God helped me to discharge my 
conscience. When within three miles of home, my 
horse stumbled in a snow-drift and fell, but I received 
no harm. What reason for gratitude ! Being out of 
the road, if I had broken my leg, I might have lain 
and perished there. On my return home, found my 
family well and comfortable. God preserved the pub- 
lic peace of my congregation, though others had been 
disturbed, and provided supplies for them every sab- 

* JNIr. Nathaniel Vincent was ejected from the I'ectory of Lang- 
ley Marsh, in Buckinghamshire, by the Act of Uniformity. He 
came to London soon after the dreadful fire in 1666, and preached 
with much zeal and success to large congregations amidst its 
ruins. He collected a numerous congregation in Southwark, and 
suffered much hardship, and many imprisonments and fines for the 
cause of God and of souls. See Nonconformist Memorial, vol. i. 
p. 304 — 308 — Wilson's History of Dissenting Churches, vol. iv. 
p. 296—304. 


bath day. Blessed be my good God. Feb. 21st, We 
kept a day of thanksgiving to pay our vows." 

In the year 1683, Mr. H. was much exposed to 
danger by his numerous labours at home and abroad, 
but the special care of God was exercised over him, 
in softening the hearts of his opponents or giving him 
information of their intentions, and in disposing others 
to behave kindly to him. He notices several instances 
of this nature. " April 10th. Richard Jepson, a bailiff, 
of Halifax, came to my house, and told my wife he 
came to summons me to the sessions. We were soli- 
citous about it and resolved not to go, though I feared 
the consequences of refusing. God set my heart seri- 
ously to seek him on that behalf together with some 
christian friends. They afterwards went to the man, 
gave him a small pittance, and he j^romised he would 
not attend the sessions. He accordingly did not ap- 
pear, and the justices were moderate v/ith the officers. 

" I promised to go and preach among a people in 
private, near Cross-stone Chapel, where God hath 
begun a hopeful work in the hearts of several young 
persons. The day fixed, was May 29th. The day 
before I spent some time in prayer, when God aided 
me in pleading with him for souls. Though I appre- 
hended trouble, yet my heart was much carried out for 
the conversion of sinners, so that I rose above the fear 
of dangers. I thus expressed myself before God, *that 
if he commanded m.e to go, and had any work for me 
to do in that place, I would go, as Luther said, if there 
were as many devils to oppose me as tiles or slates on 
the houses.' Accordingly, in the name and strength of 
my great Master, I set out about five o'clock in the 
morning. My friend, who met me on the way, had 



great fears of danger, but God animated my lieart. I 
rode about twelve miles, and about eleven o'clock 
began my work. The house was very commodious, 
and every part was full, and also many persons outside. 
We began with a Psalm. I went to prayer, and God 
exceedingly affected my heart, and made apparently 
strong impressions on the people. I preached about 
effectual calling, from 1 Pet. v. 10, and went peaceably 
through the doctrinal part ; but when engaged in the 
use of conviction, I heard a great bustle in the cham- 
ber over my head, and, when I enquired the reason, 
was told the constable v/as coming. I desired they 
would compose themselves and hearken to God's word. 
They did so ; and I went on. But I had not preached 
much longer before the constable sent and desired me 
to give over, for he had two warrants and would be 
obliged to. take me if I did not forbear, and he was 
unwilling; to meddle with me : so I made a little more 
haste (having preached two hours) and dismissed the 
people. After the prayer and blessing the constable 
withdrew, while the people went away. I went into 
the parlour, and after a while, he came again vritli 
two men and pretended to search the house, but said 
he was as loth to see me as I was to see him. He was 
doubtless sent by Mr. Robinson, preacher at Cross- 
stone Chapel, who had given notice to preach that day, 
but no one attended. This certainly vexed him, for 
great numbers came to the house to hear me. I con- 
sider all this as a great mercy and a return of prayer. 
God moderated the constable, assisted me in prayer 
and preaching, though Satan had a spite against the 
application of my sermon, and God suffered him to 
prevent the full handling of that part of my subject. 
The people were much affected with the providence. 
"SVho can tell what good it may do ? Who can tell, but 
VOL. I. s 


the devil may have overshot the mark with his own 
bow? God's call by that providence maybe louder 
than the call by his ordinance. O that it may be so!" 
" July 7tli. This evening, J. Oakes, the high con- 
stable came to warn me against preaching at my house, 
and said it would not be suffered. I told him, I acted 
orderly, and hoped I did no harm. He said, he came 
as a friend and I must take it in kindness ; I tjianked 
him. He urged me to promise that I would not preach 
on the following day, and because I would not, he went 
away in an ill humour, and said, I must take the con- 
sequence. I returned to my study, but my heart was 
so shut up I could not pray, and was much troubled. 
I had appointed the people to come at six o'clock in 
the morning. In the course of my daily reading, I 
read the 9th and 10th chapters of Exodus, in which I 
thought there were many passages very suitable to my 
case. I then sought God about that day, and he so 
touched my heart that I thought I had a token for 
good. About six o'clock several persons came, and, 
after family duty, I began in my meeting-place. The 
people came in apace, and O ! what a frame was my 
heart in while engaged in prayer, especially at the 
thought of my danger, man's anger, and the fear of 
God's taking away our liberty. God helped exceedingly, 
and the people were much affected. I began my ser- 
mon on Heb. iii. 9, but I had not preached above half 
an hour when an alarm was given that the constable 
was coming. I dismissed the people, and they with- 
drew in a fright ; but nobody came till above two 
hours afterwards. They had agreed to come at ten 
o'clock, but J. O. understanding tliat we had a meeting 
early that morning, had hastened the constable. The 
cause of their delay was, they were coming without 
the churchwarden and had to send for him. In the 


hieali time, I and several of iny people went to Coley 
chapel, so that when the constable came to my house 
and enquired if I was preaching, my servant answered, 
no, I was gone to chapel. Mr. O. would scarcely be- 
lieve her, though my wife tokl him the same. He 
came to the chapel and saw me there. I came home 
to dinner, and immediately after, preached my sermon 
to a full assembly. After service the churchwarden, 
constable, and two men came. I was vv'ithin, and they 
showed me their warrants to search for conventicles 
and plotters. When they were gone I went to chapel 
again, and heard Mr. Ellison preach a very profitable 
discourse on Matt. xi. 28. After my return, I repeated 
my sermon at home to my neighbours. Thus God 
graciously terminated this difficult matter. Blessed 
be the name of God." 

" July 21st, 1683, I went to preach at Morley. The 
people there encouraged ine to go, but I had serious 
apprehensions of danger. I prayed to God for liis 
guidance and protection, and he cleared my way. I 
was something more than ordinarily carried out in 
prayer on that behalf. I lodged at J. C's, who not 
being certain of my coming had given no notice. How- 
ever they sent about to inform the people, and we ap- 
pointed to begin at five o'clock in the morning. I rose 
before four ; preached in a barn to about five hundred 
hearers. I was comfortably assisted, and had no dis- 
turbance ; we continued from about five till near ten. 
In the afternoon having prayed, I repeated my sermon. 
God helped next day in a solemn meeting for prayer at 
T. D's ; and at my house on the Wednesday. Ebe- 
nezer. Blessed be God." 

" July 31st. We designed a journey into Lancashire, 
but were m.uch perplexed about it ; I had engaged to 
preach at Cockey chapel^ and had private business to 

s 2 


attend in tliat neighbourhood. There were great 
rumours of warrants against me at liome, and I was 
prevented from ])reaching in my own place. On the 
other hand, if I went abroad it was given out that I 
went to ca^'ry on the plot, or that I fled for fear of be- 
ing apprehended as a j^lotter. What to do in this case 
I knew not ; so I fled to my old refuge, and committed 
myself into the hands of God and set forwards ; but 
avoided going through market towns as much as 
possible, that I might not give provocation. When I 
arrived, I found Cockey chapel shut against me ; so 
I performed my services privately in several places. 
God assisted and protected me, and made it a comfort- 
able journey. One observable circumstance I must set 
down: Aug, 14th. We went to Darcey Lever; multi- 
tudes of people came. I was helped in prayer and 
preaching near an hour, when there came T. H's 
son from Bolton, and acquainted us with the design of 
some to disperse us. I ceased, some went away, others 
hovered about. I went into a house, sent scouts to 
watch and give notice, then went to work again and 
preached out my sermon. No officer came, yet we did 
hear it was a reality, but understanding we had broken 
up, they came not. The contrivers were three or four 
preachers, and some others. Father, forgive them." 

Nov. 217th. Mr. Heywood repeated his visit to the 
people near Cross-stone chapel, and though he met with 
very homely fare, he was abundantly satisfied with his 
journey. "I preached," says he, "on Jer. xiii. 17- 
God sent abundance of people, though it was in the 
night, and very dark and slippery. It did me good to 
see such willingness, and my heart was much affected 
with the sad condition of poor ignorant souls in the 
want of powerful preaching. I struggled with them 
iii my Lord's name three hours that night, till I was 


tired and very hoarse. The inn-keeper there, took me 
and my companion to his house, lodged us kindly, and 
would take nothing for ourselves or horses. We were 
much affected, and I prayed with the family at parting. 
Who can tell what good may be done ? That shall be 
my pay. It pleaseth me that I had not one penny 
from them all, but gave the poor man a shilling at 
whose house I preached ; nor had I a farthing at 
Warley the night after, where also I preached ; nor 
have I had any collections at home the two last quarters, 
as formerly, God thinking good to exercise my faith by 
preventing them. O my soul, what sayest thou to 
these dispensations ? Dost thou make all kindly wel- 
come ? Not a hair falls from my head, nor a sparrow 
to the ground without a divine providence. Dost thou 
willingly deny thyself in worldly things, so that thou 
mayest do thy Master some service ? Thy dear Lord 
seems to put thee to it, whether thou wilt be and act 
according to thy former vows and solemn covenants, 
that if the Lord will but make use of thee thou dost 
not care what fare thou hast, or whether thou hast any 
reward from men. Thou hast often breathed out such 
like workings of heart as these, and now God will try 
thee whether thou art in good earnest or not. O my 
soul, what dost thou say ? Art thou freely content to 
want as well as to abound ? Hast thou learned Paul's 
lesson ? Lay thy hand upon thy heart — the heart- 
searching God knows whether thou hast done these 
things willingly or grudgingly. Dost thou repent that 
thou didst not conform when such fair offers were 
made thee at St. Martin's, in York, many years ago, 
when thou wast under violent prosecutions in the spiri- 
tual court? Dost thou not envy them that live in 
pomp and prosperity, and wish thyself in their con- 
dition ? My soul shall answer, and upon good advise- 


ment write it down this third day of December 1683, 
above twenty-one years after our doleful ejection from 
public stations ; That I am so well satisfied in my re- 
fusing subscription and conformity to the terms en- 
joined by law for the exercise of my public ministry, 
that, notwithstanding all the taunts, rebukes, and 
affronts I have had from men ; the weary travels for 
many thousand miles ; the hazardous meetings, plun- 
derings, and imprisonments ; the banishment from my 
own house, coming home with fear in the night, &c. 
(which are the least part of my affliction, for banishing 
from my people and stopping my mouth have occasioned 
many sad temptations and discouragements, lest God 
should be angry with me, lay me aside and make no 
use of me;) notwithstanding all this, I am so fully 
satisfied in my conscience that my nonconformity as a 
minister, is the way of God, and I have so much peace 
in my spirit that what I do in the main is according 
to God's word, that if I knew of all these troubles be- 
fore-hand, and were to begin again, I would persist in 
this course to my dying day, and, if God call me to it, 
would seal it with my blood : for to me, (I decide not 
for others,) full conformity would be sinful, and we 
must resist unto blood, striving against sin." 

Mr. H.had many journeys about this time, in which 
both his faith and zeal were tried ; but the providence 
and grace of God were his joy and support. March 
13tli, 1684, he went to preach in Kirkburton parish, 
though the weather v/as exceedingly unfavourable. 
*' I set out," he says, " but found the way very dan- 
gerous, for it snow-balled my horse's feet. I resolved 
to call at Mr, Thorp's, Hopton-hall ; but going to- 
v/ards the house, my horse fell, and I lay I know not 
how. The same day, 1 had a more wonderful deli- 
verance, for going in the snow from Mr. Lockwood's, 


of Blakehouse, towards J. Arraitage's, having no track, 
I missed my way, and got entangled in a wood among 
bogs and dangerous precipices. I toiled hard, some- 
times riding, and sometimes walking on foot till I was 
out of breath. It was moonlight, and at last I got to 
J. A's, where I was to preach. When I told him 
where I had been, he was much astonished, and said 
I did not know the hazard to which I had been ex- 
posed, for the place is so dangerous, it is called Sinking- 
hill, by the inhabitants. I preached to about forty 
persons, on Matt. vi. 33, and went about half-a-mile 
near twelve o'clock to lodge. The people gave me three 
shillings and sixpence for my labours. I was well con- 
tent and bless God. Now, O my soul, what improve- 
ment dost thou make of these various providences ? 
Our adversaries envy us all such pains, and toil, 
and hazard for our dear Lord and the good of sinners. 
They enjoy their rich livings, fair parsonages, and 
fruitful glebes ; they step out of their houses into their 
churches, read their easy service, say their eloquent 
orations, eat the fat and drink the sweet ; are com- 
panions with gentlemen and peers of the realm ; have 
their thousands a year, make laws for us, and yet think 
much at our having a poor livelihood, and a little 
honest work, weeping and wrestling with God and 
sinners to do good. They call us schismatics, and 
seditious ; they exasperate magistrates against us, 
punish, banish, and imprison us ; confiscate our goods, 
excommunicate and censure us, and think and say we 
are not worthy to live, while we live peaceably, pray 
for them, and dare challenge them if ever they found 
fault in us save in the matters of our God. O Lord ! 
judge between them and us, and plead the cause of thy 
servants : let the Lord be with the good. In the mean 
time, O my soul; thou hast great reason to admire the 


gracious providences of God, in this instance espe- 
cially. If I had been hurt, I might have perished 
before I had been found, and it would have been a 
grief to my friends, and a laughing-stock to ray ene- 
mies ; but my God had mercy on me, and sent his 
angels to bear me up in their hands : let God have the 
glory. May but sinners be gained to him, I have the 
reward of all my travels. I have satisfaction in the 
review of my labours in the gospel, and think it will 
afford me more comfort in after-times than all our 
churchmen's worldly ease, honour, revenues, and gran- 
deur. Let them take these, since they are their choice; 

1 have my choice, and though it be grievous to the 
flesh, yet the satisfaction I have in my own conscience 
abundantly countervails it. IMethinks our condition is 
something like the apostle's. 1 Cor. iv. 10 — 13. xvi. 9- 

2 Cor. iv. 8—12. vi. 3—10. xi. 23—33. 

In 1684, various means were adopted to increase the 
persecution against the Nonconformists. At Exeter, 
an order was made by the justices at the quarter sessions 
against dissenting ministers, offering a reward of forty 
shillings to anj^ person for apprehending one of them ; 
and the bishop required the order to be read by all 
the clergy the next Lord's day after it should be ten- 
dered to them. This was probably in consequence of 
the king's having issued his commands to the justices 
and others, " to use their utmost endeavours to sup- 
press all conventicfes and meetings on pretence of reli- 
gious worship, it being his express pleasure that the 
laws be effectually put in execution against them, both 
in city and country." Bishop Burnet, whose impartiality 
as an historian deserves commendation, speaking of the 
persecution of the Dissenters in this year, says, " they 
were not only proceeded against for going to conven- 
ticles, so their meetings for the worship of God were 


called, but for not going to church, and for not receiv- 
ing the sacrament. The laws made against papists, 
with relation to those particulars, being now applied 
to them. Many were excommunicated and ruined by 
these prosecutions."* So highly did the persecution 

* The following account may not be considered out of place 
here, especially as in the West Riding of Yorkshire, the circum- 
stances are, by an interchange of names, commonly related of Sir. 
Heywood : — " ]\Ir. Peter Ince, ejected from Dunhead in Wiltshire, 
was a good scholar, well skilled in the languages, particularly in 
the Hebrew, and an excellent practical preacher. He had an ad- 
mirable gift in prayer, and on public occasions, would pour forth 
his soul with such spirituality, variety, fluency, and affection, that 
he was called. Praying Ince. After being silenced he lived Avith 
Mr. Grove, that ornament of his country for learning, piety, and 
public spiritedness. The subsequent relation was communicated 
by the Rev. Josiah Tompson, who received it from an intimate 
friend of I\Ir. Bates, the late aged minister of Warminster, as he 
he had often heard it from IMr. Bates himself, who had spent much 
time and labour in collecting accoimts of the most remarkable 
providences relating to the church, but who unhappily and unac- 
countably, burnt them a little before his death. 

"Not long after the year 1662, IMr. Grove, a gentleman of great 
opulence, whose seat was near Birdbush, upon his wife's lying 
dangerously ill, sent to the minister to pray with her. When the 
messenger came, he was just going out with the hounds, and sent 
word he would come when the hunt was over. Mr. Grove ex- 
pressing much resentment against the minister, for chusing rather 
to follow his diversions than attend one of his flock in such cir- 
cumstances, one of the servants took the liberty to say, ' Sir, our 
shepherd, if you will send for him, can pray very well ; we have 
often heard him at prayer in the field.' Upon this he was im- 
mediately sent for ; and Mr. Grove asking him whether he ever 
did or could pray, the shepherd fixing his eyes upon him with 
peculiar seriousness in his countenance, replied, ' God forbid. Sir, 
I should live one day without prayer.' He was then desired to 
pray with the sick lady ; which he did so pertinently to her case, 
with such fluency and fervency of devotion, as greatly to astonish 
the husband, and all the family who were present. When they 
arose from their knees, the gentleman addressed him to this 
effect : ' Your language and manner discover you to be a very 


against them prevail at this time, that the prisons were 
crowded with them and many died in confinement. 
Mr. Heywood could not be expected to escape appre- 
hension at such a time, unless he had abated in zeal 
and activity. It was in this year he was guilty of that 
supposed crime for which he suffered nearly twelve 
months' imprisonment in York Castle. The following 
is the account he has left of this memorable event : — 

" Aug. 17th. There came several bailiffs and as- 
sistants to my house, about six o'clock in the morning, 
and indeed were upon us before we were aware, for 
they were tying their horses at W. Clay's gate, when 
a lad came running to give us notice ; and though we 
did disperse before they got into the room, yet they 
saw the people about the house in the lane and croft. 
They slipped in at the back door as people went out, 
and found me and made me promise to go before Justice 
Horton the day after, who bound me over to the 
sessions at Wakefield, where I was to appear, Oct. 10th, 
1684." On the day appointed he made his appearance, 
and was rather severely handled, but permitted to 
enter his traverse. His pious friends, most of whom 
had been benefitted by his labours, were much con- 
cerned for his safety and comfort. " There were," he 
observes, " great thoughts of heart on my account, 

different person from what your appeai'ance indicates. I conjure 
you to inform me who and what you are, and what were your 
views and situation in life before you came into my service.' 
Upon which he told him, that he was one of the ministers who had 
been lately ejected from the church, and that havmg nothing of 
his own left, he was content for a livelihood to submit to the 
honest and peaceful employment of tending sheep. On hearing 
this, Mr. Grove said to him, ' Then you shall be my shepherd,' 
and immediately erected a meeting-house on his own estate, in 
which IMr. Ince gathered a congregation of Dissenters, which 
continues to subsist to this day." — Noiicotifonnht's Memorial vol. 
Hi, jwge 362— 3Gi. 


and these sad thoughts stirred up strong cries and 
prayers both by us, and in many i)laces for us. I 
wondered to see how God's people were concerned for 
such a poor creature as I. My own heart was much 
drawn out, not so much for deliverance, as that the 
affair might be so managed as would be most for the 
credit of the gospel and the honour of God. My heart 
was enlarged in secret, and when engaged with others 
on this account, pleading Matt, x. 18 — 20. Blessed be 
God, he hath bowed his ear to hear in many respects. 
1. I have had considerable liberty in the interim both 
at home and abroad, and no one has attempted to sur- 
prise or make us forfeit our bonds. 2. God hath raised 
up several friends to speak for me and write to the 
justices, particularly Esquire Harris, whom I know 
not, who represented me as loyal and a sufferer for his 
majesty; it is thought this had great influence. 3. 
God sent Sir John Kay, a man of great mildness and 
moderation to be the chief speaker that day, and to 
moderate the bench, so that they behaved respectfully 
and did not give me angry words. 4. When the clerk 
offered to produce an indictment against me for a cir- 
cumstance that took place fourteen years ago, Mr. 
Pebles said, we will not look so far back. 5. When 
one person began to give a relation of his coming to 
my house, &c. Sir John Kay silenced him. 6. The 
justices never mentioned my last book,* which Mr. 
Horton had produced, and would put me to vindicate 
in open court. 7. They took no notice of the Five- 
mile Act, which I am daily transgressing when at 
home, and which was what I most feared. 8. They 
permitted me to enter my traverse and accejited my 
bondsmen that were in the court. 9. They did not 
deal rigidly with my friends, only they fined two of 
* Israel's Lamentation. 


them twenty shillings apiece, and when they pleaded 
poverty, they required their promise to attend no more 
at such meetings, and upon their refusal cast them into 
prison that night, and set them at liberty in the morn- 
ing. As for W. Clay, a blind man, for whom we were 
most concerned, he came off the best, for though he 
had entered his traverse and gone out of court, they 
sent for him again, fined him ten shillings and dis- 
missed him. 10. I am much satisfied that the bailiffs 
are to have nothing for their pains, which might have 
encouraged them to new attempts, for upon the jury's 
finding it a 7'iot, they will not have any thing at the 
sessions when we traverse. Ebenezer." 

It was now highly necessary Mr. Heywood should 
conduct himself with more than common jDrudence, 
lest he should prejudice his cause, and be found forfeit- 
ing his engagement to keep the peace, by which was 
meant that he should not preach. Souls were perish- 
ing around him for lack of spiritual knowledge, and 
yet he was afraid to speak to them " that they might 
be saved." The state of his mind under these circum- 
stances, he thus describes : " I am in the heaviest 
condition as to my liberty of doing God service and 
good to souls, that ever I was in all my life. Men 
have broken in upon us, scattered our meeting, and 
indicted me for a riot. I am bound in £lOO. traverse 
and to be of good behaviour. My adversaries are 
watching me narrowly to find me forfeiting my bond. 
They have caught W. N,* charged him to be witness 

* This person was a hearer of Mr. Haywood's, and became his 
companion in tribulation : refusing to give evidence against him, 
he was committed to York castle, where he remained till the 
jMarch assizes. jMr. H. was much concerned for this poor luan, 
and anxious for his release, but did not know what steps were 
the most proper to be taken to accomplish his Avishes. " Behold," 


against me, are laying wait for others, and few dare 
own me. Providences seem to make against me, and 
that which is the heaviest burden of all is, it is the 
occasion of some difference between my wife and my- 
self ; for she being naturally timorous, when we are 
above the number of four she is perple^jed exceedingly, 
though it be not purposely but providentially. Truly 
my zeal for God's glory and love to souls, on the one 
side — and endeared love to my wife, fears of being 
censured for rashness and indiscretion by prudent per- 
sons, and making myself a prey to knaves, on the 
other side — do so rack and torture my spirit that it 
almost makes me weary of my life. I know not what 
to do, and am often forced to go contrary to my wife's 
mind. Sometimes God helps me in prayer to roll my- 
self on him, and then I am easy ; but, O ! how often I 
am at a loss. O my soul, this is a very great strait 
that Providence has brought thee into ! The hand of 
the Lord is gone out against me : ' Thou, O Lord, 
hast proved me,' &c. Ps. Ixvi. 10 — 12. O that I could 
say, ' Thou hast brought out into a wealthy (or spa- 
cious) place.' How long shall thy church be thus 
sadly confined ? How long wilt thou hide thy face 
from me ? How long shall human inventions keep 
out divine ordinances ? How long shall the hand of 
the magistrate be stretched out against thy poor minis- 
ters ? How long shall the wicked be encouraged in 
plotting and informing against thy poor servants for 
worshipping thee ? O my dear Lord, dost thou ap- 
prove the malicious and covetous practices of impious 
men? Wherefore lookest thou not upon them that 

says he, " God set him at liberty by a way of his OAvn. At the 
latter end of the assizes, when the calendar was read over in court 
and they came to his name, Mr. Butler said, ]\Iy lord, this is a 
poor man, if it please your lordship, let his name be blotted out. 
He consented. It was a great mercy. Blessed be God." 


deal treacherously, and boldest thy peace when the 
wicked devoureth the man that is more righteous than 
he ? Lord, hast thou no respect unto thy servants ? 
Would not thy ministers gladly preach thy word, and 
travail on account of poor sinners ? Do not our people 
long to hear their former pastors ? Doth it not go to 
the heart of this poor worm to hear the people say, 
' When shall we come and hear you ?' They are de- 
sirous to come by day or by night ; but prudence or 
danger forbids us to receive them. * Mine eyes do fail 
with tears, my bowels are troubled, my liver is poured 
on the earth, for the destruction of the daughter of my 
people ; because the children and the sucklings swoon 
in the streets of the city : they say to their mothers, 
where is corn and wine ?' Our hearts ache, to consi- 
der the perishing condition of thousands of precious 
souls, and the pining state of gracious saints that are 
forced to live upon old store. ' The harvest truly is 
plenteous and the labourers are few.' O thou Lord of 
the harvest, thrust in labourers whom men have thrust 
out these twenty-two years. Lord, take away these 
troublous days, or take us away from them, if thou 
hast no more work for us to do in this world. Hide 
us in the grave until thy wrath be past, or renew our 
days as of old." 

Jan. I6th, 1685, Mr. Hey wood again appeared at 
Wakefield, and was indicted for having a riotous 
assembly in his house, because he had preached the 
gospel of peace to above four grown persons. Strange 
as the nature of the indictment appears, it is still more 
astonishing that a British jury should find him guilty. 
The sentence of the court was, that he should be fined 
in the sum of £50. and procure two sureties for his 
future good behaviour ; and because he could not pay 
the fine, and would not promise to desist from preach- 


ing, he was committed prisoner to York Castle. A 
petition was drawn up and presented to the court in 
mitigation of the fine, but such was the severity of the 
justices, they resolved the whole should be paid. In 
the midst of this afflictive dispensation he observed much 
mercy, which he thus records with lively gratitude of 
heart : " Though my dear Lord did not think fit to 
answer the multiplied and importunate prayers of his 
servants, for my deliverance out of trouble or the pre- 
vention of my imprisonment, yet God hath heard 
prayers in mercifully ordering affairs for me when in 
trouble. 1. The justices were not rude, and Mr. White 
said he had heard a better character of me, than of any 
of my way. 2. The bailiffs gave liberty to my friends 
to come and see me, though I found it was for their own 
ends. 3. All my friends were abundantly satisfied of 
the justice of my cause, even adversaries were convinc- 
ed I was hardly dealt with. 4. I was clear and com- 
fortable in my conscience, and the £50. fine was not so 
grievous to me as the bond for good behaviour, as 
they explain it. 5. Both friends and foes pitied my 
case. 6. My wife was as cheerful as could be expected, 
and expressed her willingness that I should go to pri- 
son, rather than enter into such bonds. 7. My friends 
relieved me, so that though I was put to extraordinary 
expenses the week I was a prisoner at Wakefield, yet I had 
as much money when I left as when I entered the town. 
8. God moved the heart of the York jailor to trust my 
son John to bring me to York, so that we had many 
sweet opportunities of prayer together, and freedom of 
conversation v/ith our friends at Leeds and York, 
which was a great comfort to me. 9. Mr. Butler the 
jailor consulted my convenience, and turned a conform- 
ist minister out of his chamber that I might have a 
room to myself ; and I have all the conveniences I can 


desire, as if in a friend's house. 10. I have sjiiritual 
privileges, opportunities of communion v/ith God, li- 
berty of studying and writing, the delightful company 
of Mr. Whitaker * and his wife, who are in the next 

* " Mr. Thomas Whitaker was of a very ancient family in Lan- 
cashire. In 1676, he became the minister of a large congregation 
of Nonconformists in Call Lane, Leeds, and had a full share of the 
hardships and persecutions of the times ; yet he was so respected 
by the mayor and aldermen, that they often absented themselves 
when they had reason to expect the informers. At length, one 
Kirshaw lodged an information against him, and he was committed 
to the jail, in York, January, 1684. This trial was aggravated by 
the death of his wife while he was in prison. After his liberation, 
he renewed and pursued his ministry in peace, and was respected 
by all till his death, Nov. 19th, 1710, in the 34th year of his pas- 
toral connexion at Leeds. He left two sons; William, after- 
wards a physician in London, and Thomas, who succeeded him. 
Mr. Thomas Whitaker, jun. purchased the estate of Kirshaw, the 
informer against his father, and actually relieved his posterity, 
greatly reduced by the vices of their parent." — Toulmin's His- 
torical View of the State of the Protestant Dissenters. Appendix, 
p. 575, 576. Mr. Whitaker was born at Healy, near Burnley, 
in 1651. He received the rudiments of learning from his worthy 
father, and in various schools at Burnley, Blackburn, and ]\Ian- 
chestei'. He became a student of Mr. Frankland's, at Rathmel, 
and finished his studies at Edinburgh, where he took his degree 
of M.A. INIr. Thomas Jollie he venei'ated and loved as his spiri- 
tual father and counsellor. His views of church government were 
congregational, and " his way of understanding the great doc- 
trines of election, redemption, justification, conversion, and per- 
severance, was agreeably to the churches of England, Scotland, 
and Geneva ; yet he thought it both a slavery upon ministers, and 
a damp to their success, when they suited their style rather to 
the jingle of a party than to the nature of their subject."t He 
was unwilling to baptize any child, if one of the parents was not 
a stated member of some church, considering it an irregularity 
for a person to own the covenant for his infant, who had neglected 
the proper means of doing it for himself. When ]Mr. W. took 
leave of his sons on his djing bed, after charging them to serve the 
Lord God of their father, he left them to the disposal of Provi- 
•j- Bradbury's Preface to Wliitaker's Sermons. 


chamber, and many worthy servants of God come out of 
the city to pray and discourse with me. Blessed be God." 
During the former part of Mr. Heywood's confine- 
ment in York castle, he was much annoyed by the dis- 
solute and riotous behaviour of a papist confined for 
debt in a neighbouring apartment ; but after a short 
time he was removed. Considering all circumstances, 
Mr. H. was as comfortable as could be expected ; his 
time was much occupied in the improvement of his 
mind by study, or in the promotion of the spiritual 
welfare of others, as he had opportunity. The manner 
in which he usually spent the day, when not disturbed 
by company, was this : " After our rising, we kneeled 
down and I went to prayer with my wife. — She in her 
closet, and I in the chamber, went to secret prayer 
alone. — Then I read a chapter in the Greek Testament 
while I took a pipe. — Then a chapter in the Old Tes- 
tament with Poole's Annotations. — Then wrote a little 
here, (diary) or elsewhere. — At ten o'clock, I read a 
chapter and went to prayer with my wife as family 
prayer. — Then wrote in some book or treatise I was com- 
posing till dinner. — After dinner, Mr. Whitaker and I 
read in turn for an hour in Fox's Acts and Monuments 
of Martyrs, Latin edition. Then went to my chamber ; 
if my wife were absent, I spent an hour in secret pray- 
er, and God helped usually. — After supper, we read in 
the book of Martyrs, studied, went to prayer, read in 
Baxter's paraphrase on the New Testament." Besides 

dence in the choice of their calling, but with this character of the 
ministry : " that though it had cost him so dear, yet he had served 
a good Master, and was never ashamed nor weary of his work." 
See " Memoriae Sacrum," by Timothy Jollie, and Preface, by 
Thomas Bradbury, to the Sermons, published after his death. 
His funeral sermon was preached by Thomas Dickenson, of 
Northowram, from 2 Sam. iii. 38. Mr, Thomas Bradbury also 
preached on the same occasion, from Acts xx. 32. 
VOL. I. T 


the occasional visits of friends from the country, many 
of Mr. H.'s acquaintances in the city were permitted to 
visit him, particularly on the Lord's day. Mr. Whitaker 
and he usually preached alternately in each other's room, 
when some of the prisoners and the jailor's wife often 
composed a part of the congregation. He might 
have adopted the language of the apostle Paul when 
writing to the Philippians : " The things which hap- 
pened unto me, have fallen out rather unto the further- 
ance of the gospel." 

After an expensive confinement during nearly twelve 
months, and after many fruitless attempts had been 
made to obtain his release, a friend prevailed with the 
newly-appointed sherifT to grant his liberty, provided 
the fine was paid at the assizes. This was granted, 
and Mr. H. took his leave of York castle, Dec. 19th, 
1685. " At last," he says, " God hath graciously an- 
swered the incessant prayers of his church for my de- 
liverance out of prison. The particular mercies in my 
enlargement were many, which I have great reason to 
review. 1. It came after long expectation and frequent 
disappointments, so that our hopes were almost con- 
verted into despair ; when God turned back my capti- 
vit)^ I was like one that dreamed. 2. The person 
whom God em^iloyed to obtain it had sometimes 
failed me, and I had reason to fear he had forgotten 
me; but when the time came, he set himself resolutely 
about it. He went to the high sheriff and found him 
at home. He was treated with kindness and his re- 
quest granted, though the sheriff is a high man, and 
rebuked Mr. G. at the assizes for interceding for such 
a one as I was. 3. It was much wondered at, that 
Mr. Ash the under-sheriff, who is now jailor also, did 
not dissuade the high sheriff from it, being so much 
against his profit, which is the main thing such men 


look at. 4. It was the more remarlcable that the high 
sheriff should consent, as it was quite optional and in- 
deed not strictly legal ; but such men's oversights are 
easily overlooked. 5. It is a strange thing he did not 
send for me and bind me over to good behaviour, or 
require me to promise not to keep conventicles. 6. 
The day after I was set at liberty, I received a letter 
from London, concerning the improbability of my 
friends there getting my fine compounded. 7- I am in 
a sort a prisoner yet, till my fine is paid, and under 
the sheriff's protection, yet liberty is sweet and my 
own house comfortable. Thus my dear Lord keeps us 
still in dependance upon him, exercising our faith and 
prayers ; for if we had all our mercies at once, we 
should be in danger of taking our leave of God : a 
waiting posture is needful, and we never have so much 
of God but we need more of him while here below. 
8. The bond that was procured was only for the pay- 
ment of the fine at the assizes. 9. My great care and 
solicitude during my imprisonment were for my peo- 
ple, that their souls might be provided for. God took 
care of them, and sent persons to administer ordinances, 
so that I found them in a good and hopeful situation 
for soul's affairs on my return. Blessed be God." 

His return home excited the abundant thanksgivings 
of many, and was the cause of much praise from him- 
self. He set apart two days for thanksgiving and 
prayer, and renewing his engagements to serve the 
Lord. On the latter of these occasions he thus writes : 
" God carried me to York, that there he might show 
great and marvellous things to my soul which I knew 
not ; he quickened me, instructed and comforted me 
more than ever before. He gave my body health be- 
yond expectation, increased my credit amongst his 
people, and added to my estate considera])ly by tripling 

T 2 


my former income : thus what men devised for my 
hurt, hath turned to my advantage ; yea, I now per- 
ceive my sufferings have tended to the furtherance of 
the gospel. Let God have the glory." 

At the spring assizes he appeared at York, but the 
jailor said he could not legally receive him ; he there- 
fore returned home, convinced that nothing was now 
expected but the payment of his fine, which he hoped 
would be mitio^ated. At this time there was an act of 
grace, or gaol delivery, in which it was expected his 
case would have been included ; but being a fine on 
execution it was not. At the summer assizes some 
advised him to petition the judges, but his friend who 
had obtained his release attended with him, and offered 
the under sheriff £30 ; which he agreed to accept, and 
returned the bond for £50. " Thus," he observes, " we 
are quit of this business : blessed be God. All my in- 
telligent friends look on it as a good termination." 

In the interval between Mr. Hey wood's release and 
the payment of his fine, he was assiduously employed 
in his Master's service, in which he enjoyed much of 
the divine presence. "March 24th, 1686. That very 
day twenty years," he says, " on which the banishing 
act took place, and when I left home with a sad heart, 
despairing of ever settling again at Coley, on that very 
day the Lord brought a considerable number of my 
people together under my roof, when God helped me 
in praying and preaching, and Mr. Dawson in prayer. 
We also celebrated that delightful ordinance, the Lord's 
supper, and had something of the Lord's presence. 
Who would have thought of such a thing after a year's 
intermission ! In this God hath exceeded our hopes, 
and counteracted our fears. Blessed, for ever blessed 
be his holy name ! From this time it shall be said, 
* What hath God wrought ! How excellent is thy name 


in all the earth !' I take this mercy as a pledge of 

He embraced an early opportunity of visiting his 
native place, and on his return says : " I rode many 
miles, lodged at nine or ten places, and preached thir- 
teen times. I had much nmtual comfort with my re- 
lations, it being the first time I had seen them since 
my imprisonment. They were glad of my company, 
and God graciously preserved me. One passage I 
must not forget in this journey : I preached at ray 
cousin J. L's, on the nature of conversion, from Matt. 
xviii. 3, and A. Smith of Bolton spoke to me after- 
wards, and said it was a gracious providence that she 
should hear me again on that text, for by a sermon I 
had preached from it many years ago, God had wrought 
on her heart ; she is an excellent Christian. Let God 
have the glory. Another remarkable thing was, that 
that morning one Davis of Bolton, a bad man, was 
seen coming towards the place where I had been preach- 
ing but was too late ; the people met him as they 
went back. Howbeit, he threatens to inform against 
them unless they give him money." 

When Mr. Whitaker, who had been detained a pri- 
soner in York Castle, longer than Mr. Heywood, had 
obtained his release, he came to visit his fellow pri- 
soner, and unite in mutual praises to God for their 
deliverance. "Aug. 9th, 1686," Mr. H. say, "my 
fellow prisoner, Mr. Whitaker came to my house, and 
remained with me a week, which God helped us to im- 
prove to his glory and his people's good. On Tuesday 
he preached at Warley to a great number. Wednes- 
day, he and I had exercises in my house. In the even- 
ing he preached at T. Priestley's, and next morning at 
W. Naylor's. After that we kept a day of prayer and 
praise, when I preached : it was a good day. Friday, 


I appointed as a day of tliauk fulness, though God took 
away Mr. Whitaker's wife while he was a prisoner. 
Blessed, blessed be God, who hath not only set us at 
liberty, but given vis the liberty of ordinances without 
threats or disturbances." Hence it appears, that the 
sufferings of those servants of God for conscience' sake 
had not diminished, but rather increased their zeal for 
the divine glory. The hope of publicly serving the 
cause of their divine Master was at first very faint ; 
but he, who is Governor among the nations, was secretly 
preparing the means for the establishment of religious 
liberty in this land. Their deliverance from prison 
w^as but a short time antecedent to those events which 
introduced the glorious revolution, and was a presage 
of that release from open persecution which Dissenters 
have since enjoyed. 


Death of Charles II. and Accession of James II. — Declaration for 
Libert// of Worship — Commencement of the Dissenting Interest at 
Halifax — Erection of the Chapel at Northowram — The Revolution 
— Mr. Heywood's Annual Covenant — His Sickness — The Con- 
gregations at Alverthorj) and Pontcfract — Instances of Mr. Hey- 
wood's Usefulness — His Journey to York — Renewed Covenants — 
Last Visits to Lancashire and York — Invitations to London and 
Manchester — ReJlectio7is on the Year 1698 — Visit of Mr. Timothy 
Jollie — Sickness of his Wife and Son John — Return of his Bap- 
tismal Day — Last Year of Mr. Heytvood's- Life. 

During the imprisonment of Mr. Heywood in York, 
Charles II. died and was succeeded by his brother 
James. The reign of Charles was a memorable period 
to the Nonconformists. Flis character has been diffe- 
rently described by various writers, but the history of 
his actions shows us what he really was. Bishop 
Burnett justly remarks : " No part of his character 
looked meaner or more wicked, than that he, all the 
while that he professed to be of the church of England 
and to have zeal and affection for it, was yet secretly 
reconciled to the church of Rome ; thus mocking God, 
and deceiving the world by so gross a prevarication. 
His not having the honesty or courage to own this at 
last, his not showing any sign of remorse for his ill- 
spent life, or any tenderness, either for his subjects in 
general, or for the queen and his servants, and his 
recommending only his mistresses to his brother's 
care, would have been a strange conclusion to the life 
of any other, but was well enough suited to all the 


parts of his." James, who was an acknowledged 
papist, ascended the throne of England, Feb. 6th, 1685. 
It was universally known that the former sovereign 
was guided by popish counsels, and every body ex- 
pected the new monarch would be under the same 
guidance. Charles had scourged the dissenters with 
whips, and James, it was supposed, would chastise 
them with scorpions. He had, an appropriate instru- 
ment in the merciless Jeffries, who filled the office of 
Lord Chief Justice. Popery made rapid progress on 
the accession of James II, and threatened to overspread 
the nation. Fears among the members of the established 
church, as well as the Dissenters, were awakened, and 
those who a little before had been persecutors of their 
brethren for conscience' sake, now courted the friend- 
ship of those whom they had formerly despised. But 
when the storm appeared to be gathering thick, which 
threatened the Nonconformists with almost total ex- 
tinction, they were suddenly surprised with the pros- 
pect of religious liberty. The mercenary judges had 
given it as their opinion, that the laws of England 
were the king's laws, that it was a branch of his pre- 
rogative to dispense with all penal laws at particular 
times, and that he was the sole judge of those occasions. 
The king acquainted his council that he had deter- 
mined to send forth a declaration for general liberty of 
conscience to all persons of every persuasion, and that 
he had given orders to the attorney and solicitor 
general, not to permit any process to issue in his 
majesty's name against Dissenters. April 10th, 1687, 
Mr. Heywood received a copy of the king's declaration, 
on which he observes : " Many prayers have been put 
up for the liberty of God's ministers to preach the 
gospel, and we have been under a long restraint for 
twenty-four years ; though sometimes we have enjoyed a 


little more liberty in private than at other times. Our 
circumstances of late have been very sad, and we ex- 
pected on the death of Charles II. to be either put 
to death or banished ; but God hath strangely influ- 
enced the heart of king James to favour us and pro- 
claim liberty to all prisoners, and to take off the fines 
imposed for private meetings. A copy has come to my 
hands, which is as follows : 

*The king was pleased this day, March 18th, 1687, 
in council to declare, he thought fit for divers weighty 
considerations, that the parliament should be prorogued 
from the 28th of April to the 22nd of Nov. next ; and 
his Majesty did also acquaint the council, that he had 
resolved in the mean time to issue out a declaration for 
general liberty of conscience to all persons of what per- 
suasion soever, which he was moved to by having ob- 
served that, though a uniformity in religious worship 
had been endeavoured to be established within this 
kingdom, in the successive reigns of four of his Ma- 
jesty's predecessors, assisted by their respective par- 
liaments, yet it hath altogether proved ineffectual : 
that the restraint upon the consciences of the Dis- 
senters thereunto had been very prejudicial to this 
nation, as was sadly experienced by the horrid rebel- 
lion in the time of his majesty's royal father : that 
the laws made against Dissenters, in all the foregoing 
reigns, and especially in the time of the late king, had 
rather increased than lessened the number of them : 
and that nothing can more conduce to the peace and 
quiet of this kingdom, and the increase of the number 
as well as of the trade of his subjects, (wherein the 
greatness of a prince doth more consist than in the 
extent of his territories,) than an entire liberty of con- 
science ; it having always been his majesty's opinion, 
as most suitable to the principles of Christianity, that 


110 man should be persecuted for conscience, which his 
majesty thinks is not to be forced, and that it can never 
be the true interest of a king of England to endeavour 
it. And his majesty was also pleased to direct his 
attorney and solicitor general, not to permit any pro- 
cess to issue in his majesty's name against any dissen- 
ter whatsoever,' &c. 

" This design creates displeasure in many of the 
church of England, and in some Dissenters, and 
jealousy in most, who suspect some other design there- 
in. However it may prove, it becomes us thankfully 
to accept this immunity, to improve opportunities of 
service, give God the glory of all, and hope and pray 
that the churches of God may make it conducive to- 
wards the propagation of the gospel and the conversion 
of sinners. Amen. According to this promise, a de- 
claration came forth, April 4th, entitled his Majesty's 
gracious declaration for liberty of conscience, in which 
he gives liberty to all his loving subjects to meet and 
serve God after their own way and manner, in private 
houses, or places hired or built for that purpose. This 
came to my hand April 10th, and I perceive all minis- 
ters accordingly do preach publicly. Blessed be God. 
Ebenezer. On that day I preached in my own house, 
and many flocked thither, among whom was the 
youngest son of my dear friend J. Priestley, and it 
pleased God to touch his conscience from what I said 
on Nahum i. 15. Blessed be God for these first fniits 
of a hoped-for harvest. Lord, go on and perfect that 
which thou hast wrought for us." 

The king promised to get this declaration established 
by law, and appointed commissioners to go into the 
several comities, and ascertain what money or goods 
had been levied on the Nonconformists by prosecutions 
for recusancy, and not paid into the Exchequer. The 

LlBEllTV llESTOKED. 283 

information he received respecting the oppressions of 
Dissenters afforded him pleasure, for by relieving 
them he expected their attachment, and they now had 
a favourable opportunity of being revenged on their 
former opponents ; but having the cause of Protes- 
tantism at heart, and hoping to experience greater 
moderation for the future, they generously passed all 
by. Every body knew the king had no desire to favour 
the Nonconformists by these measures, but that his 
real design was to encourage popery ; yet when it is 
recollected with what rigour they had been treated 
nearly twenty-five years, it cannot surprise us that 
they embraced this opportunity with joy, and in some 
instances with thankfulness. 

Many of Mr. Heywood's friends and hearers resided 
in Halifax, and when James's declaration for liberty 
of conscience was published, they rented a large room 
in, or near, the town for their greater convenience, and 
requested his labours there one part of the Lord's day, 
or every alternate sabbath ; and he may be considered 
as the founder of the dissenting interest in that town. 
But this division of service, though calculated to pro- 
mote the furtherance of the gospel, did not give satis- 
faction to the whole of his congregation. " I com- 
menced preaching at Halifax-bank-top," he says, " July 
3rd, 1687, and had a great attendance of people. But 
my friends at Coley were much discouraged at mj'^ 
leaving them in the afternoon, though I advised with 
them beforehand, and obtained the consent of most for 
that day, but they were not willing that I should go 
every Lord's day afternoon. Murmurings arose, and 
some peevish words were uttered. I was much 
troubled, could not sleep, and aggravated things in my 
imagination. At last I committed the matter to God 
in prayer. My friends at Halifax were much troubled, 


and a meeting was appointed, July 19tli. God won- 
derfully melted oui* hearts in prayer for composing 
spirits, and liberty was given me till the meeting-place 
in Shelf should be got ready. I have made use of this 
liberty with great comfort and satisfaction till this day, 
Feb. 4th. Multitudes of people have flocked to the 
place and heard with attention, and some have been 
convinced by my preaching. Blessed be God." 

Emboldened by the liberty enjoyed through the king's 
declaration, the Nonconformists began to erect con- 
venient places for public worship. Hitherto Mr. Hey- 
wood's hearers had assembled in his own house, which 
was not sufficient to accommodate the numbers now dis- 
posed to attend his ministry. Various attempts were 
made to build a chapel, and several places were men- 
tioned as suitable for that purpose, but none met with 
cordial approbation. At length Mr. H. undertook the 
work alone, and at his own expense, concerning which 
he thus writes : " When I was in prison, I had many 
solemn thoughts of heart, and made serious vows what 
I would do for God if ever I had my liberty ; and in 
these God hath answered my desires. I have had far 
more opportunities of service since my release from im- 
prisonment than before, and more assistance than 
formerly ; blessed be God. One thing I vowed con- 
ditionally, that if God gave me property in the world, 
I would lay it out for him and the good of his church ; 
and my Lord hath answered me in both. He hath 
given me something to expend, and a heart to lay out 
what I have. I have long had it on my mind to erect 
a school, but had no ground on which to build it. 
While I was contriving for the public good, behold an un- 
expected providence of God offered itself to my abundant 
satisfaction, it was this : my neighbourhood wanted a 
meeting-place upon the king's declaration. Three or 


four places were proposed, but none of them were 
judged convenient, and my house was now too small. 
The people met, but could do nothing. W. Clay pro- 
posed to give ground to build on, and stones to build 
with. I urged this proposition on the people, and pro- 
mised to give £10, towards the building, but they were 
not hearty about it. At last having some masons 
with me, Jan. 24th, 1688, I went over to J. Priestley 
and told him my design, and desired his consent and 
counsel ; I said I would build it myself, and not ask 
them a penny towards it. The next day I set the men 
to get stones, but I met with many discouragements, 
which sent me often to a throne of grace. Scarce any 
would own me in the work, and some of my friends 
thought it a rash undertaking ; but I had the more re- 
course to my God. The burden lay heavily on my 
wife, who was much discouraged at times. April 
213rd, 1688, I laid the foundation stone* at the south- 
east corner. The workmen went on apace and it was 
ready for use July 8th, when I preached in it on Psal. 
cxxxii. 8. There was a vast multitude of people, 
more than could crowd into it, though it has three 
large wings. Blessed be God, that hath succeeded my 
poor endeavours, answered my prayers, and again given 
us a token for good." On the day when the new place 
was opened, several persons from Warley and else- 
where were admitted members of the church. The 
building cost Mr. H. about £60 ; and he received but 
little help from the j)eople, except that W. Clay gave 
the land and stones, and different families erected pews 

* It is related of him, that when he laid the first stone he 
kneeled down upon it, and spent a whole hour in giving thanks to 
God for the liberty now enjoyed and so long desired, and in pray- 
ing for the success of present and future endeavours to promote 
the cause of Christ. 


for tlieir accommodation ; but on a review of what 
God had enabled him to expend in building this sanc- 
tuary, he adds, " 1 do not repent it." 

This freedom of worship enjoyed by the Noncon^ 
formists was very precarious, being dependent on the 
caprice of a monarch who had no love for them, nor 
the protestant cause ; but the affairs of James were 
approaching a crisis attended with lasting benefits to 
this kingdom. He was carrying things with a high 
hand, and the wiser part of the nation foresaw the 
ruin of their religion and liberty, if he continued to 
reign. I'o the joyful surprise of multitudes, it began 
to be rumoured that the Prince of Orange was pre- 
paring to invade the land, to secure the Protestants, 
and to preserve the liberties of the people. " The 
affairs of the nation," says Mr. Heywood, " astonished 
every considerate person. King James had tried the 
church of England and the Dissenters, but could not 
bring either of them to consent to take off the penal 
laws and tests from the papists, that they might be 
legally admitted to places of authority ; wherefore his 
popish council and Jesuits were put on trying new 
measures, and what could not be done by fraud must 
be effected by force. Soldiers were raised, and many 
Scotch and Irish Papists were brought into the king- 
dom, and drawn towards London. The guns on the 
tower were planted towards the city ; treaties were 
made with the French king, to help with an army to 
subdue heretics ; all faces gathered blackness, and a 
dreadful consternation seized the people. Popish of- 
ficers were appointed in the army and navy, and lord- 
lieutenants, justices, and mayors were selected, who 
either were popishly inclined or were indifferent, but 
subject to the king's pleasure. Though the Dissenters 
had liberty, we knew it was not out of lo^'e to us, but 


for another purpose. We had heard the king had 
said, he was forced to grant liberty for the present to 
those whom Iiis soul abhorred. In the midst of these 
events, the king on the first of October, issued writs 
for choosing a parliament. The day of election came, 
and multitudes went to York to choose two knights, 
but were prevented from proceeding by the king's call- 
ing in the writs, because he had heard the Prince of 
Orange was coming against him. Nobody scarcely 
believed it, but in the end it proved true. The prayers 
of the Lord's people were now awakened to great 
solicitude, and earnest cries to heaven, seeing ourselves 
in the midst of dangers." James, who was a weak 
and superstitious prince, perceiving his cause daily 
losing ground, abdicated his throne, which was after- 
wards filled by William and Mary. Soon after their 
establishment on the throne, the renowned Toleration 
Act was passed, and the freedom of religious worship 
was secured to the Dissenters by law. Opportunities 
of public usefulness were now very numerous, and 
cheerfully embraced by Mr. Heywood. Like a wise 
husbandman, after a long and dreary winter, he re- 
joiced at the return of spring, and laboured to the ut- 
most of his power, though near sixty years of age. 
In the review of this wonderful year, he mentions with 
gratitude, that though his horse had fallen nine times 
with him, yet by the goodness of God he had not been 
materially hurt, and that he had been supported under 
abundant labours, 

Mr. Heywood was never able to ascertain his natal 
day, but having found the day of his baptism from the 
register at Bolton church, he usually observed its re- 
turn with peculiar solemnity. On this day it was his 
custom to review the labours and remarkable provi- 
dences of the past year, and to enter on new engage- 


ments to be the Lord's. His covenant at the close of 
the year 1690, is as follows : " I was greatly helped 
in the forenoon to spend some time on my knees, and, 
prostrating myself before the Lord, to confess my sins, 
supplicate mercy for my soul, my relations, and con- 
gregation, for the nation and the church of my God, 
and to praise him for his mercy to me a poor worm ; 
and now I will transcribe the thoughts of my heart, in 
the following meditations and resolutions. May God 
Almighty make me sincere, that I may neither dissem- 
ble in seeming better than I am, nor act inconsistently 
with my profession, by unsuitable practices in the year 

" O eternal Majesty ! Sovereign Disposer of all per- 
sons and things on the face of the whole earth, who 
hast prolonged my life through my sixtieth year, and 
hast preserved the composedness of my mind, the 
health of my body, and liberty of serving thee : blessed 
be thy name. I have passed through the revolutions 
of another year, and will, by the assistance of divine 
grace, look a little both backwards and forwards, that 
my heart may be duly affected and my life suitably 

** In general. — 1. O my soul, in this lower world 
we reckon a succession of time by hours, days, months, 
and years, for this is suitable to our present state ; but 
the endless duration of eternity knows not such school- 
boy's arithmetic, it is all folded in the gross sum of 
TO vvv.* O that boundless ocean ! How are my 
thoughts lost and senses confounded in the contem- 
plation ! The short measures of time we now use, will 
presently be insignificant terms. Lord help my heart 
to dwell on things future and invisible. Let me not 
look on things which are seen and temporal, but on 
* An immortal Now. 


things not seen, which are eternal. Nothing is worth 
mentioning but the things which concern eternity. 
2. How swiftly doth time run on, hours, days, weeks, 
and years pass, like a swift river, never to return 
again. All things below are upon the wheel of 
change, nothing continues in a fixed state. Gene- 
rations of men and women enter upon and pass off the 
stage of the world apace ; the sun riseth and goeth 
down ; the wind changes about continually ; rivers 
run into the sea, and from thence vapours ascend and 
are emptied on the earth ; yea, the stage itself must 
be taken down, and the world, upon which so many 
comedies and tragedies have been acted, shall wax old 
as a garment, and shall be changed into another form; 
but (I think) not annihilated. I expect no constancy 
in this inconstant world; it passeth away and the 
lust thereof, and therefore shall not be ray centre : I 
will fix the anchor of my hope beyond the veil ; the 
immutable God shall henceforth be my strength, trea- 
sure, refuge, and portion for ever. Farewell, tran- 
sitory world ; welcome, a city not made with hands, 
eternal in the heavens. 3. Life is short. Every day 
and year added to my life is so much taken from it ; 
it is a passing shade, a weaver's shuttle, a fiying eagle, 
a post, a watch in the night ; we fly away. Plow 
soon have these sixty years of my life passed away, 
like a tale that is told, as a dream when one awakes. 
It is but a short time since I was an infant, then a 
school-boy, and now I am one of the older sort ; anon 
I shall not be here, my place will know me no more, 
my soul must launch into the ocean of eternity, and 
ray body be laid in the bed of dust." My life is not 
now to be reckoned by years, but by months, days, or 
hours, yea, it is as nothing before the Lord. Few 
and evil are the days of the years of my life ; it is well 
VOL. I. u 


they are few, since tliey are so evil : Lord, suffer me 
not to build tabernacles here. 4. Comforts and crosses 
do also fly away apace. Day and night are the two 
worms that hourly gnaw the root of the tree of life, 
and the comforts thereof; yea, sorrows also are as 
waters that pass away. I will not be depressed with 
troubles, nor exalted with enjoyments, both are short- 
lived, and heaven or hell swallows up both. I will 
look through clouds and thick mists to a fair day be- 
yond, and I will renounce those gleams that will end 
in dismal mists of eternal darkness." 

" A little more partlcularJij . — 1. If I were as rich 
as Croesus, as warlike as Alexander, and as great a 
sovereign as Nimrod, and would give all to retrieve 
the past year, it could not be. That was a foolish 
request of a lady, 'Call time again.' Alas! there is 
no lock by which to seize time when he is past ; once 
gone, ever gone. Esau found no place of repentance, 
for if the door be shut, importunate cries cannot open 
it ; there is no retrograde motion out of eternity into 
time ; yesterday cannot be recalled ; this morning 
cannot be fetched back again. A great person 
called out, ' all too late, all too late ; a world of 
wealth for an inch of time.' O what would damn- 
ed spirits give for a little time in this world ! Lord, 
help me to improve opportunities, to redeem time, 
to work while it is day, and whatsoever my hand 
findeth to do, to do it with all my might. Alas ! 
man knows not his time. 2. I will look back again 
and review the mercies I have enjoyed this last year. 
I may say, with David : ' Many, O Lord my God, are 
thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy 
thoughts which are to us-ward : they cannot be 
reckoned up in order unto thee : if I would declare 
and speak of them, they are more tlian can be num- 


bered.' God's mercies to me have been new every 
morning, and renewed every moment, at home and 
abroad, on foot and on horseback, alone and in com- 
pany, in preventing and privileging, in spiritual things 
and in temporal. O, how many sermons have I 
preached and heard ! How many days and duties of 
prayer have I been employed in ! What helps for my 
soul have I had ! How many chapters have I read, 
and what influences of the Spirit and rebukes of con- 
science have I experienced ! All these are talents ; 
and what have I done with them ? An account will 
be called for ; and what reckoning can I make ? If I 
cannot pass my account with myself, how shall I make 
it pass with the righteous Judge ? Lord, help me to 
set my accounts straight, and where I am defective, 
help me to act faith in Christ's blood for pardon. 
3. What sins have I been guilty of this past year ? 
Indeed, I may say, with David : ' Innumerable evils 
have compassed me about ;' they are more than the 
hairs on my head. How many duties have I omitted 
or negligently performed ! How many vain thoughts 
have lodged within me ; and what idle words have I 
uttered ! How many sinful actions have I committed ! 
* If thou, Lord, shouldst mark iniquity, O Lord, who 
shall stand ?' I am cast at the tribunal of justice ; 
but I flee to the throne of grace. Are my sins repented 
of and pardoned? 4. What good have I done this 
last year, by tongue, pen, or property ? Have I been 
faithful to God and souls? Has this been (annus 
pregnatus) a fruitful year ? or hath it been (annus va- 
cuus) a barren year ? Has it been filled up by general 
and particular duties, as a Christian and a minister ? 
May I not complain as Titus Vespasian, (Amici, diem 
perdidi) ' O my friends, I have lost a day ? ' Who 
is better for me? It is true, I have been much 

u 2 


employed, but liave I been well employed? Lord, 
humble nie. 5. AVhat deaths have I heard of this 
year, and what funerals have I attended ? Have not 
many been laid in the grave that were as likely to 
live as I, both old and younp;, rich and poor, stranger 
and relative, good and bad ? Many of the same age, 
calling, and constitution with myself have gone ; and 
why not I ? If God had given death a commission, 
my soul had left this body ; and where had I now 
been ? either in heaven or hell ; for immediately after 
death comes judgment : and what is my present readi- 
ness ? 6. What providences have I met with this last 
year, cross or comfortable ? What rods of wrath or 
cords of love, v/hat sicknesses and recoveries, what losses 
and disappointments, what griefs of heart and im- 
provement of them ? Hath not this been (annus mi- 
serabilis) a woful year, on personal, domestic, and 
public accounts ? Yet mayest thou not now set up an 
Ebenezer ? What elegies, or songs of triumph hast 
thou sung ? What benefits hast thou obtained by all 
the divine dispensations ? 7. What is the state of my 
said f Am I a child of God or of the devil ; in a 
state of nature or grace ? Am I a stranger, or a fel- 
low-citizen with the saints ? If I have wandered ano- 
ther year, I am farther o\it of the way by one year's 
journey. If I be a convert, what progress in holiness, 
increase in grace and knowledge, and what communion 
with God have I enjoyed ? What clearer evidences of 
my state and interest in Christ have I ? What is my 
meetness for heaven and preparation for death ? Lord, 
humble and pardon thy sinful servant." 

" As for the year I have entered on, I do purpose 
by the assistance of divine grace, 1. Not to make ac- 
count of long life, but become prepared for death. 
God forbid I should please myself with the hope of 


living to the end of this year. I will not boast myself 
of to-morrow, for who knoAVs what a day may bring 
forth? I will not anticipate either my future comforts 
or crosses : sufficient to the day is the evil thereof. I 
would live every day as if it were my last; for my 
times are in God's hand. What a number of sudden 
deaths have I seen ! and why may not I be snatched 
away in an instant ? O that I could be always ready ! 
2. I am resolved not to put off what my conscience 
tells me : if a duty, to be speedy in the practice of it ; 
if a sin, to fall quickly to war against it, and mortify 
it. O that I could make haste and not delay to keep 
God's righteous judgments ! God forbid, I should, 
with Felix, adjourn a conviction to a more convenient 
time. If I put off this day, I shall be less fit to-morrow. 
Time past has fled away, and the future is not at my 
command. O that to-day I could hear and obey his 
voice ! 3. I would be daily making new vows and 
renewing my covenant with God. As I this day re- 
pent of my broken covenant, so I will bring myself 
under new obligations to be the Lord's devoted servant 
for ever. I have sworn, and would perform, that I 
will keep God's righteous judgments : I would vow 
and pay, pay and vow again this day. This day 
write it down, O my soul, what obligations thou hast 
laid on thyself for closer obedience, constant watchful- 
ness, and daily intercourse with God. 4. I do further 
resolve, in the strength of God, and would take him 
with me, not to take my old guilt to a new year ; and 
I am loth to take my old frame to new services, for 
then I should make bungling work of it. Lord, anoint 
my soul with fresh oil ; give me the assistance of thy 
Holy Spirit ; quicken me, and I shall own thy name ; 
create in me a clean heart ; renew in me a right spirit; 
stir up thy grace within me, and bring my soul nearer 
to thee. 5. I will make account of troubles and diffi- 


culties this ensuing year. God forbid, I should please 
myself and say, I shall have peace ; and that to-morrow 
shall be as this day and much more abundant, I may 
have hard work from Satan, the world, bad and good 
men, myself, yea, from God. O that my foot may stand 
in an even place ! I little know what is before me ; 
but whatever it is, if God be with me and for me, who 
can be against me ? 6. I have therefore resolved to 
put myself into the hand of God, in doing and suffering, 
for he is faithful Creator, a merciful Father, a skilful 
Physician, a safe Guide : ' Father, into thy hands I 
commend my spirit,' and will acknowledge thee in all 
iny ways. He will deliver, he doth deliver, he will 
guide me by his counsel, and so receive me to glory. 
7. Once more, I desire to depart, and to be with 
Christ, which is far better than being here. O Lord, 
if it be thy will, let this be the last year of my life. 
I have travelled long enough on this side the moun- 
tain, make haste, my beloved, and be thou like a roe 
or a young hart upon the mountains of spices. Come, 
and break down this clay wall, and take me to im- 
mediate and everlasting communion. O welcome death ! 
that shall come as a messenger to fetch me to my Fa- 
ther's house. What do I here ? or I may say with bless- 
ed Calvin, (usque quo, Domine?) 'how long. Lord ? ' 
Not that I am weary of life, or in love with death, 
through any outward calamities tliat have befallen me ? 
no, I bless the Lord, I am as free as most men, and I 
have as much comfort and content as ever I had in all 
my life; but, methinks, I am long kept from my dearest 
Lord, and from the blessed society above. I almost envy 
the happiness of my dear, former, christian friends, 
whom I could name, and with whom I have had sweet 
communion in private and public ordinances, who are 
now before the throne of God and see his face. God 
hath wiped all tears from their faces, whereas my tears 


are wet on my cheeks. Lord, why may not this be 
the blessed jubilee of my release ? But, as I pray that 
thy name may be glorified, and thy kingdom come, so 
also that thy will may be done in me and by me ; by 
me here on earth till I reach heaven, by me here on 
earth as it is done in heaven ; and if thou hast any 
further service for a poor worm in thy church militant, 
I am both willing and thankful for it ; only qualify 
me for it, fortify me against all opposition, sanctify me 
for all dispensations, and give me glorious success in 
my poor endeavours for thy church's good ; the longer 
I live and labour for thee, the higher the glory and 
brighter the crown shall be to, 

'• Thy aged servant for ever, 


Mr. Hey wood generally enjoyed a good state of 
health, and was seldom prevented from attending to his 
public duties as a minister by indisposition of body ; 
but in the latter part of the year 1691, while visiting 
his friends in Lancashire, he found himself indisposed 
and returned home on Friday, Sept. 25th. The day 
after he went to fulfil an engagement to preach at 
Alverthorp, and on the succeeding Wednesday attended 
a fast and preached at a neighbour's house, but was not 
able to conduct the services of the sanctuary on the 
Lord's day. "Oct. 4th, 1691," he says, "I had my 
first fit of the ague, besides which I had six others. 
They returned every third day, and every one was 
worse than the preceding ; the last fit I had was on 
the 16th, which stupified me. My spirits were much 
affected, and my body much weakened by them. I was 
brought so low that many despaired of my life, and it 
was reported in many places that I was dead ; but 
God showed wonders on the dead, and answered the 


many and importunate prayers of his people for me. 
Many came and prayed with me, and some private 
fasts were kept on my behalf. At last God gradually 
restored me, so that I preached two Fridays in my own 
house, and ventured to preach in my chapel, Nov. 29th, 
having been ten Lord's days from the place, eight of 
which were on account of my disease. Dec. 10th, we 
kept a solemn day of thanksgiving, with about forty 
of our christian friends and neighbours. Dec. 14th, 
we kept another day of thankfulness with about twenty 
young men and women. God made it a good day, 
and many mercies were enumerated concerning me." 
The state of his mind under this affliction he thus de- 
scribes : " I was not afraid of death, nay, I longed for it ; 
and when many judged it all over with me, I was 
afraid it was too good news to be true, and was loth to 
be sent back from the port and harbour into the 
tumultuous sea of a wicked world, with a deceitful 
heart ; for God had immediately before given me as- 
surance of his love, and some foretastes of heaven." 

!RIr. Heywood Vv^as mercifully restored from his afflic- 
tion of body ; but was soon called to experience a 
different trial. Anxious for the spread of the gospel, 
he cheerfully encouraged new interests, either by his 
personal labours, or by his ejideavours to procure for 
them supplies or stated pastors. He had frequently 
served the congregations at Pontefract and Alverthorp; 
but some of the people put a very wrong construction 
on his motives and actions, which occasioned for a 
short time no small degree 'of uneasiness to his tender 
conscience. The following is his own account of the 
affair : " Immediately after my recovery, there came a 
letter to me subscribed only by R. J. but I perceive 
consented to by others at Alverthorp, charging me 
with ruining the congregations at Pontefract and 


Alvertliorp, because of some words I had said to Mr. 
Gill when he came to visit me. I was greatly per- 
plexed, and my sleep was broken ; not that I was 
guilty, but on account of their prejudice. I betook my- 
self to my old remedy, and prayed God would let them 
see their mistake, humble their hearts, and make us 
reconciled. I wrote a letter containing a full answer 
to their charges against me ; but mine not arriving, 
they wrote again and I sent another. At length six 
of them came purposely to me to confess their faults 
and mistakes, and wished me to go and preach for 
them again. The mistake originated with the young- 
man they had invited to come to them, judging, or 
rather misjudging, that I had so much interest in the 
places, that Mr. S. and Mr. G. could not come with- 
out my leave, whereas I gave no occasion for such a 
suspicion." As a proof of his cordial forgiveness he 
embraced an early opportunity of preaching for them ; 
and on his return experienced a gracious deliverance 
from danger. " The day before I preached at Alver- 
thorp," Mr. H. says, " C. Clark came for me, and we 
commended ourselves into God's hands. We came 
safely to Wakefield, where I preached that day, and at 
Alvertliorp on the Lord's day, at Mr. Naylor's on 
Mondaj'-, and at Wakefield again on Tuesday. I knew 
not of any company home, and set off at four o'clock. 
At the back of the town, when I came to W^estgate 
Moor, I struck towards the road ; but in passing over 
a ditch which proved deeper than I expected, my horse 
threw me before him. With much difl[iculty I got out, 
and found I had bit my tongue and bruised my face ; 
but was able to get on my horse and ride home. This 
was a gracious providence, and I look on it as an 
answer to my poor prayers that morning. I was alone 
and not in the road, so that if I had been hurt, it might 


have been a long time before I had been found, and I 
am very vmwieldy and helpless. J. W. was killed 
near Morley by a horse and cart about a fortnight 
since. Why was I not brought home dead or lamed ? 
Just before, my wife and I had been a journey into 
Lancashire, and returned home in peace and safety. 
Blessed be our gracious and prayer-hearing God. O 
my soul, give God all the glory." 

The diligent and disinterested labours of Mr. Hey- 
wood were remarkably blessed to the conversion of 
souls, and he often records, with gratitude and joy, 
many instances of his successful preaching that came 
to his knowledge : " My eager and earnest desire for 
many years," he says, " hath been carried out for the 
conversion of sinners to God, and it hath been some 
discouragement of late that I have not heard of such 
results as formerly ; but God hath now revived my 
languishing hope, which I must solemnly record. 
1. J. Rhodes, of Haworth, told me of a man near 
Colne, wrought upon by a sermon I preached at 
Holmes Chapel, two or three years ago, who is now 
very serious. 2. J. Butterworth informed me of a 
young man at Liverpool, convinced by a sermon I 
preached at Ormskirk three years since, who says, he 
never engages in prayer but he prays particularly for 
me. He is become eminent, and hath been an instru- 
ment of good to some of his relations. S. Lydia Wood 
came to me the other day in great trouble of spirit, 
and appears very hopeful. 4. Mary Hanson lately 
came to me in agony of mind. Her husband told me 
some circumstances that gave me grounds to hope well 
of her. 5. W. Ramsden's daughter was forbidden by 
her father to hear me : but she came once, and God 
was pleased to take hold of her heart. 6. Another 
young woman hath come to me, weeping much on ac- 


count of lier soul. 7. A servant at Rhodes-Hall, who 
had been a wicked lad, comes constantly to hear me, 
and is much changed, spends much time in reading, 
praying, and talking in a religious strain with his 
fellow-servants, and is very hopeful. I have also 
heard that God hath set the faces of several young- 
men among my hearers heaven-wards, and that they 
frequently meet in the night for prayer. I was greatly 
rejoiced by the good news, and sent on Lord's day to 
speak to one of them, desiring he would ask his com- 
panions to come to my house the following Wednes- 
day. They came Nov. I6th, 1692, about two o'clock, 
and continued till seven. God greatly assisted them 
in confessing sins, pleading for converting grace, and 
in expressing their concern lest they should be mis- 
taken in their views of themselves. They pleaded for 
the church, for me, and my family, &c. It was time 
profitably spent. Much of the presence of God was 
enjoyed by these hopeful youths, with whom I never 
before joined in prayer except with one. Six of them 
engaged, and prayed experimentally and feelingly ; I 
was amazed at their gifts. Many of them are the 
children of carnal parents. They blessed God for my 
recovery and labours, and that they had ever seen my 
face and heard my voice. I concluded the meeting, and 
was about an hour in prayer. Such feelings of grati- 
^tude I have seldom had with other persons. Blessed 
be free grace for this abundant answer of prayer." 

When Mr. Heywood entered the 65th year of his 
age, he still continued his itinerant labours as he had 
opportunities, besides his stated services at home. In 
a journey to York, during the summer of 1693, he 
says : *' I visited and prayed with Mr. Sharp, and bap- 
tized five children for him at Leeds. On Friday, I 
preached the lecture in the new meeting place, at 


York, for Mr. Coltoii ; travelled to Bell-Hall, and 
discoursed with Lady Ilewley, and prayed for her and 
her sick family ; preached on the Lord's day at York, 
and visited my friends ; met Lord Wharton at 
Healaugh, gave him a catalogue of 160 bibles and 
catechisms distributed by me ; procured 50 bibles 
and catechisms for friends ; obtained £5. for J. Hey- 
wood, £3. for our* school, and £lO. for Bramham. 
' I prayed four times vi^itli Lord Wharton, f and re- 
turned safely home, though late, Aug. 24th." 

** ]Mr. H. was at this time engaged in the erection of a school 
in his neighbourhood, to which he subscribed liberally himself, 
and obtained the benevolent contributions of others, which he 
recoi'ds: " ]Mr. J. H. who owns Northowram-Green, was willing 
to give ground, ten yards square, and stones for the building. 
Wm. Clay, R. Ramsden, J. Baxter, and I undertook the affair : 
J. Baxter was to overlook the work. I gave £5. at first, and 
procured £7- towards building it ; but we are not certain what it 
will cost. It was finished ; and iMr. David Hartley, born at Hali- 
fax, and educated at Oxford, came to teach school, Dec. 5th, 1693. 
I prevailed with Lord Wharton to maintain six poor scholars at 
this school." 

t " Philip, Lord Wharton, was a puritan nobleman of consider- 
able note. He was one of the lay members of the Westminster 
Assembly, and took a most active part in supporting the Parlia- 
ment against the King, for which service he was created an Earl 
by the House. He was appointed, with several others, resident 
Commissioner at Edinburgh, to attend the Scotch Parliament. 
He was sent to the Tower for challenging the legality of the long 
Parliament of Charles II. After this he travelled abroad, taking 
Mr. HoAve with him. He seems to have been a decided Noncon- 
formist, and his house was a refuge for Nonconformist Ministers 
in time of persecution. While attendinc;- Dr. Blanton's Meeting 
at one time, the place was beset and his name taken down. The 
place was fined £40. and the Minister £20. which his Lordship 
paid. Mr. Locke describes him, as ' an old, expert parliament 
man, of eminent piety and abilities, and a great friend to the Pro- 
testant religion, and interest of England.' In a postscript to a 
letter which Dr. Owen wrote from his house to the church, in 
Berry-Street, when he Avas ill, he thus expresses himself concern- 


His covenant at tlie close of this year is as follows : 
"0 my dear Lord, I have, by thy wonderful hand of 
providence, passed another year in mercy, and though 
a vile cumber-ground, spent one week in another 
year, by the interposing kindness of my all-sufficient 
Mediator. I do now prostrate myself at thy Majesty's 
footstool, giving thee most hearty thanks, setting up 
my Ebenezer, and saying, with thy servant David : 
' Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house, that 
thou hast brought me hitherto ?' Thy kindness hatli 
counteracted my demerits and fears, and surmounted 
my hopes and expectations. There is scarcely such 
an instance of divine benignity under the heavens ! 
Thou hast regarded me according to the estate of a 
man of high degree, O Lord God ! Thou hast made 
me a member of, yea, a minister in, thy church ; an 
office more fit for a prince than a peasant, an angel 
than a mortal man. Thou hast found me out employ- 
ment public and private, at home and abroad ; thou 
hast given me the esteem and affection of thy people ; 
hast crowned my labours with abundant success ; hast 
favoured me with many visits from heaven, maintained 

ing the family : ' I humbly desire you would in your pi'ayers re- 
member the family where I am, from whom I have received aud 
do receive great christian kindness. I may say, as the Apostle of 
Onesiphorus, The Lord grant to them that they may find mercy 
of the Lord in that day : for they have often refreshed me in my 
great distress. The Countess of Wharton appears to have been a 
very excellent woman, and from the language of ]\Ir. Howe, in 
the Dedication of his " Thoughtfulness for the Future," she was 
decidedly a Nonconformist, if not a member of his church. He 
speaks of her Ladyship having been called to serve the christian 
interest in a family wherein it had long flourished, and which it 
had dignified beyond all the splendour that antiquity and secular 
greatness could confer upon it." — Orme's Life of Owen, p. 375 — 6. 
Lord Wharton died at Hampstead, Feb. 5th, 1696, aged 82, and 
was buried at Wooburn — 0. Hej/wood's MS. 


my lot, and continued me in this neighbourhood, in 
some measure of faithfulness, against all opposition, 
these forty-four years. Thou hast even spoken well 
of thy servant's house for a great while to come ; for 
thou hast given me two hopeful sons, (the third is, I 
hope, in heaven,) whom I have given back to thee in 
the ministry. My eldest son hath this last year found 
a wife, a prudent companion, and thereby obtained 
favour from the Lord. Thou hast called my son to 
pastoral employment in Pontefract, given him a heart 
concerned for the good of precious souls : and who can 
tell what spiritual children he may have in the gospel? 
Many prayers are on the file in heaven for him : and 
what can thy servant speak more unto thee, for the 
honour of thy servant ? My outward comforts are 
not inconsiderable : thou hast given me Agur's lot, 
neither poverty nor riches, but food convenient for 
me. Thou hast rather increased than diminished my 
estate this year : and thou, O my God, hast told thy 
servant, that 'thou wilt build him a house, therefore 
thy servant hath prayed unto thee.' O my dear Lord, 
the everlasting, covenant-keeping, and prayer-hearing 
God, I am thy worthless servant, the minister of my 
Father's house, and that the least in our English 
Israel. Thou hast taken me, as it were, from the 
sheepcote, though very deficient in capacity, and one 
of the darkest sinners amongst the sons of men, as un- 
likely a being as any to be brought into the bond of 
thy covenant ; yet such is thy transcendant and con- 
descending love, that thou hast been with me whither- 
soever I have walked, and hast made me a name like 
the name of the great, at least of the good men that 
are in the earth. I have in my days passed through 
straits and abundance, liberty and imprisonments, com- 
forts and crosses, honour and dishonour, evil and good 


report, as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; my journey 
to the heavenly Canaan hath been up hill and down, 
and hitherto my days, like a sea-faring man's, have 
been sometimes lifted up to heaven, and presently cast 
down into the deep abyss. Well, be it so : God is still 
the same and changeth not, therefore I have not been 
consumed. Whatever instability or disorders there 
are in my house or heart, I am persuaded the cove- 
nant of grace is ordered in all things and sure, and 
there is all my salvation and all my desire, though he 
make it not to grow. Thou, O Lord, art my rock on 
whom I repose : thou hast received great sinners, 
propped up weak saints, comforted grieved spirits, re- 
lieved and released tempted souls ; I can set my pro- 
hatum est to all thy sovereign receipts. I have found 
a believing prayer to be as a merchant's ship to fetch 
good commodities from a far country, a private key to 
unlock the treasures of heaven, a channel to convey 
divine influences. Sometimes guilt has set a lock on 
my lips, and hardness has stupified my heart, and 
deadness has benumbed my conscience and affections. 
I have been so troubled that I could not speak, and so 
overwhelmed as not to express the agonies of my heart; 
but presently the tide has been turned, and the Holy 
Spirit has given free vent to my troubled thoughts ; 
then a torrent of affections has flowed and my heart 
has gone out to God, because God has come into my 
soul. He is a free agent, like the wind that comes 
and goes where and when it listeth. Blessed be God 
that my spiritual state and eternal happiness depend 
not on the mutable ebullitions of my heart, or variable- 
ness of my sensations ; but on his eternal thoughts of 
love to sinners, Christ's death, and the infallible promises 
of his blessed covenant ; there I repose and venture 
my immortal soul ; and though my comforts may ebb 


and flow, yet free grace, Christ's merits, and the Spirit's 
needful influences are the support of 

" Thy devoted servant, 

"O H." 

At the close of the next year of his life, he thus 
writes : " March 15th, 1695. This morning I set my- 
self to spend some time in prayer, being sixty-five years 
from the day whereon I was baptized. I began with 
reading my regular chapter, which was 1 Cor. iii. 
About seven o'clock proceeded to confess the sins of my 
nature, heart and life, in the course of my pilgrimage, 
for about one hour, and came down to family duty. 
Went uj) again, read Isa. xl, and then pleaded with 
God for my own soul about an hour ; God greatly as- 
sisted me. Then I read a chapter, began pleading 
with God for the nation and my congregation, but was 
straitened and discouraged ; I rose from my knees, 
considered a little, and had thoughts of desisting, but 
resolved to try once more. I read Ps. cxv, resolved on 
the duty of thankfulness ; and O what a field of mat- 
ter, what floods of tears, and what meltings of heart 
had I for an hour ! Blessed be God for that little cor- 
ner of heaven ; I must write it down, and set a star 
upon it as one of the days of heaven, an anticipation of 
that glory I am hastening to and am not far from." 

" My dear parents presented me to the Lord in the 
ordinance of baptism, devoted me then, and therein 
doubtless prayed for me ; and afterwards afforded me 
a pious and liberal education. Yet little did they think 
that I should live above sixty years, to see such changes 
in civil and ecclesiastical affairs as I have done since 
1640: the bishops in power, then down, and then 
up again. Little did they think that I should be a 
public preacher above forty-four years, have such a 


measure of health, liberty, and opportunities more 
than most of my brethren, with some good success and 
fruit of my poor labours; — that I should print so many 
books, enjoy so many comforts of life, bring up two 
sons to be ministers, build a chapel, help so many poor 
ministers and Christians in their necessities by myself 
and others, and yet have a competency for myself and 
family ! Nothing was more improbable than these 
things ; which, without adding more, I record not for 
ostentation, but to set off the riches of grace, and 
that I and my posterity in future ages may learn to 
trust God and glorify his all-sufficiency. O my soul, 
reflect upon thyself. Thy life has been a life of won- 
ders, and the life of nature hath been attended by a 
better life of grace. O the lively influences of grace 
I have enjoyed ! Many a sweet hour hath my soul 
had with God ; this hath been the seasoning of my 
life. I could not have lived nor carried on without 
God ; this is the antidote against the poison of sin, the 
pledge and presage of a better life to come. My dear 
Lord hath not only put me into a posture for enjoying 
his presence hereafter, but made me instrumental in 
diffusing spiritual life among others. Blessed be his 
holy name ! Who knows but my own sons, and others 
whom I have been instrumental in introducing into 
the ministry, may be the means of converting others ? 
This, this is better to me than crowns and kingdoms, 
or thousands a-year. My soul praise the Lord, speak 
well of him, act more vigorously for him, keep close to 
him, live always as in his sight, long to be with him, 
and make thyself ready for his immediate presence." 

In the year 1696, Mr. Hey wood paid his last visit 
to his native county. His advanced age rendered 
him unfit for travelling much abroad ; but he had a 
strong inducement to undertake this journey, princi- 

VOL. I. X 


pally to testify his afiectionate regard to the memory 
of his sister Esther Whitehead,* who had lately died, 
and requested him to preach on a given text at Bolton. 
" I designed a journey into Lancashire this summer," 
he says, " on account of some worldly business with 
my tenants, but chiefly to preach my sister Esther's 
funeral sermon at Bolton, on a text she left as a blessed 
legacy, Isa. xliv. 22. I was solicitous about that jour- 
ney, and prayed to God to direct and protect me. At 
last I resolved, and cousin J. Heywood came for me, 
with whom I set out, June 1st,, and returned with Jas. 
Lomax, f June 12th. In that journey I preached se- 
ven times, at Eccles, INIanchester, Bolton, Cockey-moor, 
Rochdale, and Sowerby ; baptized two children, and 
administered the Lord's supper at Bolton to near 500 
persons, I judge. I was fatigued, but the Lord 
brought me safely home. I found peace and safety in 
every step of my way, assistance in my work, and suc- 
cess in my undertakings, namely, in relieving several 
necessitous poor, reconciling differences, and conversing 
with friends. O for the fruit of my labours in my na- 
tive county ! I have seen some gracious answers of 
prayer, and remarkable passages of providence in the 
review. Blessed be my good God." 

Soon after his return from Lancashire, he resolved 

* She was about two j'ears older than her brother Oliver^ and 
was married to William Whitehead in 1648, who was born in 
Craven, and brought up at Halifax. " He was a man of singular 
endowments, much reading, gravity, holiness, usefulness, a non- 
such of his kind in the country both for gi'ace and natural abilities, 
(rod removed him by a few days' sickness, Nov. 15, 1661." — O. 
Heywood's MS. He was buried in Bolton church-yard. 

t James Lomax married Esther the younger daughter of John 
Heywood, Oliver's oldest brother. They lived on part of the 
family estate in Little Lever, which is still occupied by their de- 


to visit his friends at York and in the neighbourhood, 
before the close of the summer. The following is the 
account he gives of his journey: " Aug. 25, I696, I 
set out for York, having put myself into the hand of 
God, visited many friends, and lodged at my old quar- 
ters. I preached the lecture at York on Friday, spent 
the Lord's day at Bell-Hall with Lady Hewley, which 
was providentially ordered, Mr. K. assisting Dr. Colton 
at York that day. Met with Mr. Taylor and his com- 
pany, and travelled with them to Ferry-bridge, which 
gave me opportunity to discourse w^ith Mr. White rela- 
tive to various matters of moment, he being one of my 
Lord Wharton's executors. I lodged at Fontefract, 
and saw my daughter and grandchild, and got safely 
home a day sooner than I expected, and found all well: 
praised be God." 

The ministerial character, abilities, and usefulness 
of Mr. Heywood, caused him to be respected wherever 
known. Public worship among the Dissenters being 
now protected by the laws of the land, many dissenting 
places were erected about this time, and the people 
wishing to obtain settled pastors, and there not being 
a sufficient supply of young ministers to answer the 
numerous demands, some of the congregations in large 
and populous towns were under the necessity of ap- 
plying to those who had been labouring in obscure 
parts of the country. Mr. Heywood, being v/ell knov/n 
amongst the Dissenters by his publications and preach- 
ing, received several invitations this year to other places. 
The congregation at Little St. Helen's,* in London, 

* Dr. Annesley collected a congregation here, upon king Char- 
les's indulgence in 1672. In this place, the first public ordination 
amongst the Dissenters Avas held June 22, 1694. The service was 
conducted with great solemnity, and continued from ten o'clock 
in the morning till six in the evening. Dr. Annesley was promised 
considerable preferment in the establishment, if he would conform, 

X 2 


lately under the pastoral care of Dr. Ainiesley, were 
anxious to have him as their pastor, but he iipmediately 
gave them a denial. He also received invitations to 
labour at Halifax and Manchester, both which he re- 
fused. In his review of this year he says : " March 
15th, 1697, my baptismal day, I resolved to spend the 
forenoon in secret in my chamber with God, &c. After 
dinner I returned to my study, and made some reflections 
on what had past the former year. Much delightful ex- 
perience I have had of communion with God in my 
chamber, and many remarkable providences about my- 
self and small family, at home and abroad. God hath 
given me abundant supplies in worldly concerns this 
year, though many have been brought to poverty by 
decay of trade, scarcity of money, and bankruptcies ; 
yet I have rather laid up than run into debt : blessed 
be God. I have had more invitations to considerable 
places this year than before. At Halifax, where the 
people have built a large meeting place, and fixed on 
Mr. Priestley to supply every other sabbath, Mr. 
Priestley and some others spoke to me, wishing me to 
supply the vacant sabbath. I preached the first ser- 
mon in it, Nov. 11th, but dared not promise to go 
constantly, however I told them I would help occa- 
sionally, which I have done, and got supplies for 
Northowram. Oct. 14th, two men came from Man- 
chester to persuade me to accept an invitation to the 
place where Mr. Newcome had preached. I put them 
off at that time, but they wrote to me repeatedly : at 
last I told them I was resolved to stay where I was." 
" Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my father's 

but he was so convinced of his duty to act as a Noncoiiformist 
minister, that he resisted all the temptations offered him. He 
laboured much and successfully in the Lord's vineyard for fifty- 
five years, and died in the 77th year of his age, Dec. 31, 1G90. 


house that thou hast brought me hitherto ? I have 
continued sixty-seven years in the world, and forty-six 
in this neighbourhood, preaching publicly and privately. 
My old hearers are more unwilling to part with me 
than ever. Some of them are sensible the salary is but 
small, that I maintain considerable hospitality, and 
that several are now gone from us to Halifax. Some 
of my friends enlarged their contributions without my 
asking, for I never stood upon terms with them ; I 
told them, whether they gave me any thing or nothing 
I was resolved to stay with them, and would draw my 
last breath amongst them, for the following reasons : 
1. This was the first and only place I have been 
settled in. 2. Many of my people have adhered to me 
in difficult times and in my imprisonment. 3. God 
hath given me many seals, as children born to him in 
this place, whom I dare not leave. 4. I cannot but 
foresee the sad consequences of my leaving them, for 
none would serve them at the rate I have done. 5 
God hath given me a house of my own, and I have 
been at charges to build a chapel, and let the peojile 
have the use of it gratis. 6. I have something of my 
own yearly coming in for necessary supplies, and I 
desire not riches since my family is small, and my sons 
are educated. 7. I have many christian friends in the 
country whom I visit, and to whom I preach, who are 
kind to me, and I have some indigent places for which 
I procure supplies ; I think if my own people would 
let me go others would not. And, alas, how long 
have I to live ? What a bad example it would be to 
others, and what reproach would it raise against us, 
that we are covetous and would move for more in- 
come, and I cannot expect that either Manchester or 
London would be heaven? I might meet with troubles 
there and then call in question my call to^ remove. 


Besides, it is ill transplanting a tree that thrives well 
in the soil, as my father Angier wrote to me about 
my going to Preston. He also quoted, ' When I sent 
you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, lacked ye any 
thing? And they said, nothing.' I cannot say, I 
have wanted conveniences ; nay, God hath abundantly 
blessed me in this place, and I have seen the sad effects 
of persons removing to greater places. I am sure my 
gifts are more adapted to a poor village than to a 
great town or city ; I have a numerous assembly con- 
stantly, and a society to which I administer all ordi- 
nances, as many as I am able to overlook ; and I think 
my genius and constitution are more adapted to a 
country than a city life." 

" The Eternal Jehovah, one God in three persons, 
whom I have chosen as my chief good, and have many 
times in the uprightness of my heart given myself 
unto, hath this year loaded me with mercies, as many 
as I am able to bear. God hath given me temporals. 

1. A pious, prudent, careful, good-natured wife, who 
is exceedingly tender of me, almost to excess, with 
whom I have lived very peaceably almost thirty years. 

2. God hath given us our health in a great measure, 
though we have both been under the sentence of death 
for a short season. We are free from any lingering 
distempers by which many are sorely afflicted. 3. God 
hath kept death out of our family thirty-six years. 
My dear wife, Elizabeth, died at her reverend father 
Angler's, 1661, and since that time, we have had a 
continuance of the same number, with the addition of 
my present wife. 4. I have two sons who are a very 
great comfort to me, and who have expressed their 
care of me beyond comparison, both when absent and 
present, when sick and well : and as my wife is as 
affectionate towards them as any mother can be, so 


are they as kind and dutiful to her as if she were their 
own mother. 5. God hath added to our family two 
very lovely branches, my son John's wife, a very amia- 
ble, and I hope, pious person, whose marriage with 
him was very disinterested, as she knew not whether 
he would have any thing or nothing, though she had 
above £400. to her portion. However, I have since 
given him half of my land in Little Lever ; she was 
married to him regarding him as a pious minister, 
and they live very comfortably together. And God 
hath added one more, by giving them the fruit of mar- 
riage, a very lovely son, a Timothy, a return of prayer 
dedicated to God in baptism, called after Mr. Timothy 
Jollie, whom my daughter-in-law owns as her spiritual 
father, and he is my son in the faith as Timothy of 
old was of Paul's. This young Timothy, my grand- 
son, is above a year old, comes on apace,* and I hope 
will bear God's name in the world as well as mine in 
aftertimes. 6. We have a faithful, laborious, conscien- 
tious, and quiet servant, Susannah Tillotson,f whom 
• we have had in the family nearly sixteen years ; who 
kept house for us carefully that year when I was in 
York Castle, indeed she is, as a servant, a non-such, 
with whom we have scarcely ever had an angry word ; 
however, she never answers again, she is very prudent, 
and, I hope, fears God. 7. The habitation in which 
I live is my own, purchased twenty-five years since, 
in which I have lived comfortablj^, where I commenced 
housekeeping when first married, above forty years 

* " Timothy Heywood, son of Mr. John Heywood, of Ponte- 
fract, died Sept 24th, 1717; he had been married on the 18th of 
the same month." — Northowram Register, continued by Mr. Thomas 

t "Susannah Tillotson died May 21st, 1712. Had been a ser- 
vant to Mr. and Mrs. Heywood about twenty-six years. Aged 
about seventy three."— Nor//zowra7« Register, &c. 


ago, in which my three sons were born, and from which 
my own mother ascended to heaven, the only house 
I would choose in all the country, a good house with 
little land, that I might not be cumbered with worldly 
business. 8. God gave me money to build a meeting- 
place very near my house, which is a great convenience 
for me in my old age, and contains some hundreds of 
people every Lord's day. 9. God hath cast my lot 
among peaceable, affectionate neighbours, in a village 
of about fourteen families, so that no difference hath 
fallen out among us, and they all generally come to 
my chapel, and are glad apparently of my company. 
10. God hath blessed me with a competent estate, and 
though I have visibly a smaller income than many, 
yet I do experience a secret blessing in what I enjoy, 
iso that besides my family expenses and acts of charity, 
I do every year lay up something. 11. I have had 
great safety at home, as freedom from robbers and un- 
reasonable men, and among all my journeys and falls, I 
have never broken a bone nor put one out of joint. 12. 
I have had daily accommodations, food, raiment, re- 
freshing sleep, a fire to sit by, a good chamber to study 
in, books to read, my memory, imagination, and the use 
of all my limbs. What shall I say more ? Many, O 
Lord my God, are the wonderful works which thou 
hast done, they cannot be reckoned up in order unto 
thee ; if I would declare and speak of them, they are 
more than can be numbered. One thing more, as an 
outward mercy, which occasioned this meditation, is 
the good esteem I have among ministers and Chris- 
tians, which is no contemptible mercy. Demetrius 
had a good report of all men, and of the truth itself. 
God hath honoured me with this, which hath been 
variously demonstrated, particularly in the kind invi- 
tations I have had from abroad, and the respect I have 


at home. God forbid, this should feed an ambitious 
desire, yea, it humbles me, I must not however bury 
it in the grave of silence, but adore God in it as an 
inducement to my doing good," 

" But the best blessings and most precious are my 
soul's mercies, which as they are of infinitely more 
worth, so they are no fewer. The Father of mercies, 
Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, one God, is my God, 
who hath in the covenant of grace made himself over 
to me, and all his perfections to be employed for my 
good. The Father hath given his own and only Son 
to lay down his life for me, to reconcile me to God, 
who is become my prophet, priest, and king, who 
hath called me by his grace, put spiritual life into me 
when dead in trespasses and sins, who hath enlight- 
ened my mind, convinced my conscience, bowed my 
will, renewed and drawn my affections to himself, 
given me a heart to believe, repent, and obey his gos- 
pel, hath engaged my soul in solemn covenant, con- 
quered Satan for me, subdued sin in me, loosened my 
heart from the world, and helped me to love and fear 
him, to hate sin and abstain from appearances of evil. 
It was only free grace that hath divorced me from 
vain company and brought me into the society of 
Christians from my childhood to this day. O what 
delight and satisfaction have I had in the communion 
of saints, many of whom have long since landed safe 
in heaven. O the blessed private fasts, days of thanks- 
giving and conferences I have had ! How sweet have 
sabbaths, sermons, and sacraments been to my soul ! 
Many a time have I sat under the shadow of God with 
great delight, and his fruit hath been sweet unto my 
taste. He hath cast me down and raised me up by his 
Spirit. Many choice refreshments I have had in my 
journeys and in God's sacred institutions. But what 


outgoings of soul and incomes of grace have I met 
with from God in secret ? My daily communion with 
God hath made the happiest seasons of my life. I have 
crept to my dear Lord every morning and at other 
times, and he hath not been a stranger to me. He 
hflth given me tokens of his love, and not disclaimed 
my secret groans, sighs and tears. I would not barter 
these endearments for all the purchases on earth. 
Though it hath not been always so, yet sometimes my 
dear Lord hath taken me into his banqueting house, 
and his banner over me hath been love. I can truly 
say, that God deals familiarly with man. O what mul- 
titudes of sins hath my God pardoned ! What numer- 
ous prayers hath he answered, what fears dispelled, 
and griefs removed, yea, my God hath performed all 
things for me. These last years I have been loaded 
with mercies in my private and personal capacity as a 
Christian, and in my public work as a minister. I 
can look no way but mercies surround me beyond my 
arithmetic. What shall I render to the Lord for all 
his benefits towards me ? I will pay my vows , unto 
the Lord now, in the presence of all his people, and 
make new vows." 

In the review of the year 1698, he thus expresses 
himself : " Blessed be God who hath brought me 
hitherto through a variety of duties, difficulties and 
mercies, to enter upon the seventieth year of my life, 
the age of man. Whether I shall accomplish this year, 
I know not, nor am I much concerned, so that I may 
live to God, and finish my course with joy in his service 
and to his glory. I said to him this day, when pros- 
trate before him, now. Lord, I would welcome my last 
breath, that this poor carcass may never rise but be 
carried to the grave, if only my soul may ascend to 
heaven ; but I have arisen in health, and this breath 


I give to tliee, this body and all its powers and senses 
shall be for thy service, this soul and all its faculties 
shall be for thy glory. I am here to comply with thy 
mind, to be at thy disposal ; service or suffering, this 
ensuing year, shall be welcome. Make my heart sound 
in thy statutes, search me to the bottom, discover to 
me all the deceit and fallacies in my heart. Leave me 
not to myself, hold me by my right hand, that my soul 
may still follow hard after thee. Give me this year 
seals to my ministry, set my soul some steps nearer 
heaven, and let me have some further attainments to- 
wards perfection. O that I could bring forth still 
more fruit in old age to myself and otliers, and in both 
to God. Help me to arise and depart, for this is not 
my rest, that my soul may aspire more after my ever- 
lasting rest above." 

The increasing infirmities of old age prevented Mr. 
Heywood from going much abroad, so that he could 
not enjoy the society of his numerous friends as 
formerly; but he was occasionally refreshed by the 
company and conversation of those who came to visit 
him. He takes particular notice of a visit paid him 
by Mr. Timothy Jollie, for whom he entertained the 
most cordial affection, not only as a Christian, but as 
his son in the gospel. " May 17th, 1700, my wife 
and I had been at a private fast, and immediately after 
we came home, Mr. Timothy Jollie came to my house, 
and brought Mr. Mault, (his scholar,) and his son 
Timothy* with him, intending to stay the Lord's day ; 

* This Timothy Jollie, son of ]Mr. Timothy Jollie, the tutor at 
AtterclifFe, became assistant to IMr. Wadsworth, his father's suc- 
cesssor. In 1720, he was invited to London, to assist INIr. Mat- 
thew Clarke, at Miles' s-Lane, Cannon- Street. On the death of 
Mr. Clarke, he was chosen pastor of that church, in which station 
he continued till his death, Aug. 3d, 17^7; figed sixty-five. His 


but iny wife was taken so ill I durst not invite them, 
but in the morning she was better. There were many 
mercies in this mercy. — He, his pupil, and myself 
spent some time in prayer on Saturday forenoon, when 
every one of us felt his heart going out after God. — 
Mr. Jollie was particularly affected in the duty, when 
taking notice of the sermon I preached twenty-six 
years ago in Westmoreland, on 2 Tim. iii. 7, from 
which he dated his conversion. — He also took special 
notice of another sermon I preached while he was at 
Mr. Frankland's, on making a spiritual use of all parts 
of learning. I had forgotten it, but he remembered it 
very distinctly, having been edified thereby. — Mr. 
Jollie informed me of a circumstance concerning my 
son Eliezer, which I had never heard before, that he 
had saved his life at Natland when some of the scholars 
went to bathe. Blessed be God for that preventing 
mercy. — He preached both parts of the Lord's day in my 
meeting-place, on Jer, iii. 22, very feelingly and judi- 
ciously ; he prayed very fervently, and gave great 
satisfaction to the congregation, which was very large. 
He said he had not seen such a numerous assembly in 
a country place, nor even in a market town. May 
God do good to them. — Our personal converse was 
agreeable and savoury, though, alas, not so profitable 
as it might and ought to have been ; but he is very 
intelligent and observant. — I do perceive that God hath 
made him of great use in training up young persons 
to the ministry. He has at this time twenty-six 
scholars, and forty more, who have been instructed by 
him, are employed in that sacred office. Indeed he is 
well accomplished for this work, having learning, gifts, 

funeral sermon was preached by Dr. David Jennings, from Phil, 
i. 23. — See Wilson's History of Dissenting Churches, vol. i. 
p. 492^496. 


sweet temper, and soundness in the faith ; not drawn 
away with the new opinions, very orthodox, and of a 
moderate spirit. Blessed ^e God for him. He receives 
Mr. Prince's people to commmiion, and some of his 
people sit down with Mr. Prince, though he be a 
Congregationalist ; he is of a healing and humble spirit. 
These are important and signal mercies for which I 
have prayed, and cannot but take special notice of, as 
an answer to prayer." 

In the latter part of this summer his wife and son 
John had the sentence of death in them, but God had 
mercy on them and on him also, lest he should have 
sorrow upon sorrow. " My wife," he mentions, " was 
taken ill on the Lord's day, Sept. 22nd. I was afraid 
she was seized with a fever which is very much about 
in the neighbourhood. She was much weakened by 
it, so that she could not go to chapel the next Lord's 
day. I was greatly concerned for her ; prayed and 
gave her into the Lord's hand, who was pleased to re- 
store her, so that the Lord's day after she was at our 
l^lace of worship, wrote the sermons, and repeated as 
she is wont to do. J. C. lies dead at this time, who 
has been ill of the fever only a fortnight. My wife is 
above sixty-eight years of age, and he little above forty. 
My son Eliezer came and told me my son John was in 
a fever. I charged him when he returned the next 
day to let me know how he did, but I heard nothing 
for several days. I was much concerned, spread his 
case before the Lord, and put him into his hands. 
On the Lord's day after, two men went about Halifax 
and told several persons I was dead ; * the next day 

* A similar report had been circulated several months before, 
on which he made the following remarks : " Alas, what a lying 
world is this ! Some raise a groundless report, others tell it con- 
fidently without examining the truth, as in this, so in many other 


many inquired of our servant, who rectified the mis- 
take ; but I was afraid lest my son John was meant, 
on which I was much distressed and prayed again for 
him. On Friday night a boy brought me a letter 
written by himself, signifying his recovery, and that 
he had preached the Lord's day before. O what a re- 
vival was it to my spirit ! Blessed be God for this sea- 
sonable answer of prayer." 

"March 12th, 1701," he says, "I staid at home and 
set myself solemnly to spend all that forenoon in secret 
prayer in my chamber, because my baptismal day 
happens on the last day of the week. Accordingly, 
after I had performed my usual chamber devotions and 
family duty, at nine o'clock I went into my chamber 
and began my exercises ; read Psal. li. fell on my 
knees, humbled my soul for sin, pleaded for pardon 
and grace about an hour, and God graciously helped ; 
then 1 read Isaiah Ixiv, prayed for the church 
and nation, and God helped; then read Psalm cii. 
prayed again for the interest of Christ abroad in 
the world, and was assisted ; then I read 1 Timothy, 
iv, pleaded for my sons, my congregation, and re- 
lations, till twelve o'clock; it was a delightful fore- 
noon; blessed be God. O what abundant cause have 
I to admire the gracious providence of God to me 

cases of greater importance. What cause have I to admire the 
good hand of Providence which hath kept me alive thus long, 
when I daily hear of others younger than I being snatched 
away by death ? O that tliis may quicken and rouse up my spirit 
to be more active for God as one raised from the dead, that hence- 
forth more good may be done by me than ever, and that it may 
appear God had glorious ends in sparing my life more than I yet 
see ! Such a report as this, though false, should leave a real 
impression on my spirit to mortify my corruptions, wean my 
heart from this world, work up my soul to heavenly objects and 
to prepare for death — for cue day it will be a true report — he is 


this last year on many accounts ! This day, I de- 
sire to contemplate the seventy-first year of my life, 
longer by far than I expected to live, longer than my 
mother, brother, or sisters have lived, or most of my 
relations, except my poor father, who lived to be above 
eighty years of age. O what have I been doing ? 
What doth the Lord spare my life for, from year to 
year ? I cannot but wonder that I should be kept 
alive, when so many of my age and under have this 
year been laid in the silent dust. It hath been a year 
of great mortality. This time twelve months I was 
taken very ill ; my sons and their wives came much 
alarmed to see me, and I was considered in great 
danger ; but I am better now than before." 

Mrs. Heywood was again visited by severe indisposi- 
tion of body this year, so that for a time she was sup- 
posed to be near death ; but God graciously restored 
her in answer to fervent prayer, after an illness of 
about eight weeks. " Sept. 20th, 1701," Mr. H. ob- 
serves, " my wife and I being in the house alone, we 
spent some time in prayer, and God gave her much en- 
largement of heart as formerly : blessed be God. This 
is the first time she engaged with me since her sick- 
ness. Both my sons came and preached in my chapel 
Sept. 24th, and kept it as a day of thanksgiving for 
her. It was a good day : blessed be God." 

Having surpassed the usual limits of a man's life, 
Mr. Heywood was looking forward to the time of his 
departure, and longing for its approach, and in the re- 
view of the last year of his life he thus expresses him- 
self: "I have had multiplied mercies this year. My 
life is still prolonged notwithstanding my many in- 
firmities, especially my short-breathing, which hath so 
increased upon me that I could not walk to my chapel, 
but my friends have prdvided me a chair in which two 


men ccivry me ; and when I get into the pulpit am en- 
abled to preach audibly. My dear Lord has been with 
me all along. My wife had a long and dangerous 
fever which kept her ill eight or nine weeks. She 
wished to be gone, and desired me not to pray for her 
life. I gave her into God's hands and begged her 
again in submission to his will. He answered my de- 
sire, though she is yet weak and tender, and hath not 
been at chapel this February, 1702, but she is very 
helpful to me and others, though nearly seventy years 
of age. There have been many deaths about us, but 
death hath not broken in upon me and mine these forty 
years, except a little son of my son Eliezer's which they 
called Oliver, about seven days old : blessed be God. 
JSut who Mows ivliat this next ijear mmj hring forth"^^ 
I have a capacity for studying sermons, and writing 
much. I sleep, eat my meat well, have a good diges- 
tion, and much ease, except fits of coughing which are 
soon over : blessed be God." 

* This was written only two or three months before his death. 


Mr. Heywood's last Sickness and Death — His Character as a Son 
— Husband — Father — Master of a Family — Relative — Friend — 
Subject — His Religion — Spirituality of Mind — Spirit of Frayer 
— Gratitude to God — Self-Examination — Watchfidness — Humi- 
lity — Faith — Liberality — Talents — Simplicity of Maimer — Fer- 
vour of Spirit — Conscientiousness — Disinterestedness — Doctrinal 
Sentiments — His Views of Church Government — His Diligence 
in his Work — The Success of his Ministry. 

Real religion appears beautiful in every age and 
condition of life, but especially when its possessor is 
drawing very near to eternity. The patriarch Jacob 
was an illustrious character, but never appeared more 
dignified than when he strengthened himself on his 
bed, called his children around him, told them what 
should befall them in the last days, and declared that 
he had waited for the salvation of God. Moses, the 
servant of the Lord, never spoke more eloquently in 
addressing the tribes of Jacob, than when he was a 
hundred and twenty years old, and had received the 
command of God to ascend mount Nebo and die there. 
When David sat on the throne of Israel, invested with 
all the grandeur of his office, he did not appear half 
so glorious as when he assembled the princes of his 
people in his dying chamber, collected all his remaining 
strength, stood up on his feet, gave Solomon and the 
princes a solemn charge to build the house of the Lord, 
and concluded the interesting scene by blessing the glo- 
rious name of Jehovah, and praying that the whole earth 
VOL. I. y 


might be filled witli liis glory. We have traced, with 
some degree of minuteness, the eventful course which 
the subject of this memoir thought it his duty to pur- 
sue, and not a little of the power of religion as dis- 
played in the active, holy, and devoted life of O. Hey- 
wood, may be learnt from the preceding pages, and it 
remains for us to observe its influence on the closing 
scene of his life. 

^Vhen Mr. Heywood was unable to bear the fatigue 
of walking to his chapel, though but a short distance 
from his dwelling-house, his people were unwilling to 
be deprived of his services, especially as he wished to 
continue his ministerial labours to the last, and, when 
carried into the ])ulpit in his chair, he was able to con- 
duct the services with his accustomed energy. It must 
have been peculiarly delightful to see this faithful ser- 
vant of the Lord Jesus, whose days had been devoted 
to the cause of Christ and the good of souls, spending 
his last moments in recommending that gospel to 
others which had been his support and consolation 
through life. He delivered to others what he had 
seen and handled of the word of life, with all the 
earnestness of a man on the brink of eternity. He 
had no secret fear that he was deceived himself, or 
that he was deceiving others, when extolling the glories 
of Christ and the wonders of redeeming grace ; but 
living and dying he was " not ashamed of the gospel 
of Christ," knowing that it was "the power of God 
unto salvation to every one that believeth." The sub- 
ject on which he discoursed several Lord's days, imme- 
diately preceding his dissolution, M^as in accordance with 
the solemn event : " Nevertheless, the foundation of 
God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord know- 
eth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth 
the name of Christ depart from iniquity," 2 Tim. ii. 


19. He was spared to complete a course of sermons 
on this text, and with it he closed his public ministrj^ 
the Lord's day but one before liis death. No parti- 
culars of his death are preserved, except that he died 
in peace. May 4th, 1702, in the seventy-third year of 
his age, and fifty-second of his stated ministry. In 
the absence of other information, the concluding part 
of his diary, which he continued till within five 
days of his death, may be acceptable. "April 26th, 
Lord's day. In the morning I was little fit for the 
work of the day; yet made a venture. Read Job xiv; 
did pray, but was short ; preached on 2 Tim. ii. 19- 
Finished that text. Some came in at night. I was 
very weary. 27th. Morning, I was ill, and had much 
ado to get into my chamber.* Came down, and kept 
down all day ; began to write, but was not able. Mr. 
B. came and went to prayer with me. Was something 
better in the afternoon. 28th. | I was not able to go 
up into my chamber, but prayed below. Was a little 
assisted in the afternoon to pray in my parlour. 
29th. Morning, I had help to get up, and my wife left 
me for prayer in the parlour. We went to family 
prayer. God helped. I had many visitors, and W. 
Clay came and went to prayer with me. Young J. P. 
came ; his father went to prayer with me." This was 
written on Wednesday, and he died on the Monday 
following. It is generally supposed he was interred in 
his mother's grave, on the south side of Halifax church, 
called Holdsworth's chapel ; but though no stone 
points out the place of his interment, and no monu- 
ment records his name and excellencies, yet his me- 
mory is still revered in the neighbourhood where he 

* Chamber, was a term by which he frequently meant hi$ 

t His Will bears date this day. 

Y 2 • 


was born, and in the places where he dispensed the 
word of life ; and his record is on high.* 

The chief end of biography is to instruct and im- 
prove mankind. On this account the history of per- 
sons, who by their natural or acquired abilities, have 
arisen so far above the common standard, that they 
have attracted the general gaze, as if belonging to a 
superior order of beings, or who by birth or accident 
have been exalted to stations which very few can ex- 
pect to occupy, is not so calculated to be productive of 
benefit as that of individuals who have moved in a sphere 
of life more resembling the ordinary circumstances of 
men. It is true that there are some incidents in the 
life of Mr. Heywood, and in the history of the times 
in which he lived that have contributed to his celebrity; 
but in the preceding narrative, which contains much of 
his own language, we have become acquainted with 
him as a man of like passions with ourselves. He has 
told us of his dangers, and trials, and labours as an 
ejected minister, and he has also made us familiar with 
his conduct and feelings as a man, and a Christian. 
He has often introduced himself as occupying the rela- 
tions and engaged in duties common to ourselves ; and 
that we may the better estimate his worth, and be ex- 
cited to imitate his excellencies, we shall endeavour to 

* Mr. Heywood was succeeded at Northowram, a few months 
after his death, by the Rev. Thomas Dickenson, who was ordained 
at Gorton Chapel, in Lancashire, May 24, 1694, and continued 
there till his removal to A^orthowram, in 1702. He died Dec. 2(5, 
1743, haying been minister at Northowram upwards of forty-one 
years. He is said to have been " an eminent, useful, and faithful 
minister of God's word ; a meek and humble Christian ; an affec- 
tionate, tender parent ; a kind husband ; a sincere friend ; a social 
neighbour ; a cheerful companion ; very temperate ; had an un- 
common memory ; lived well ; and died looking for the mercy of 
our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life." — Northowram MS. Re^ 


describe his Character. To give a full length por- 
trait, and a striking likeness of this distinguished man 
of God, would require a personal knowledge of the in- 
dividual, and the hand of a skilful artist, neither of 
which the writer of these pages can pretend to claim. 
Nothing more must be expected than the faint out- 
lines of an imperfect sketch, filled up by a few quo- 

As a Son, he appears an illustrious example of duti- 
ful affection. It was his happiness to have parents who 
cared for his soul as well as his body, and their en- 
deavours being crowned with the divine blessing, he 
considered himself as laid under a double obligation to 
love and obey them. As long as he lived he enter- 
tained sentiments of cordial esteem for their memory, 
and he never mentioned them but in the language of 
kindness. When his father was in difficult circum- 
stances he travelled many miles, and cheerfully relin- 
quished a part of his own right to satisfy the claims 
of creditors and preserve his father's reputation. His 
pious mother was very dear to him. He considered it a 
great honour that she took her leave of the world 
when on a visit at his house. In the account of her 
life he leaves this memorial of her piety and his affec- 
tion : " I owe much to her as the instrument under 
God of that saving good I at first received ; and I hope 
/ shall never forget the instructions of a mother T 

It might naturally be expected that he, who was so 
affectionate as a son, was not less so as a Husband. 
His affection for Miss Angier, having originated in the 
purest motives, and being fostered by christian prin- 
ciples, was ardent and of long continuance. He fre- 
quently made mention of her many years after her 
decease in the most affectionate manner. In his second 
wife he found a suitable companion for himself, and a 


kind mother to his sons. Her temporal and spiritual 
welfare he endeavoured to promote by every possible 
means. If any little unpleasant circumstance trans- 
pired, and such there will occasionally be in domestic 
life, his custom was to flee to a throne of grace. On 
one such occasion he remarks : " This is my old remedy 
and it never fails." 

When he became a leather he showed himself feel- 
ingly alive to the best interests of his children. He 
dedicated them to God in infancy, not only in the 
solemn rite of baptism, but by earnest and importunate 
prayer, and afterwards by frequent and solemn cove- 
nant engagements. On the birth of his first-born he 
thus expresses himself; "I desire not great things for 
him in the world, but good things for his soul, in order 
to another and a better world." As his children ad- 
vanced in life, so, if possible, he increased in holy 
anxiety for their welfare. Aware of the many temp- 
tations to which they were exposed, he watched over 
them with godly jealousy, encouraging every hopeful 
appearance of grace, and strenuously opposing their 
propensities to evil. Many a sleepless night did he 
spend on their account when absent from him. On one 
occasion when he had heard an unfavourable report of 
one of them, he says: "I could not sleep one wink 
that night ; but in the morning God melted my heart, 
and gave me some relief. I wrote letter upon letter, 
not knowing where he was, and fearing further snares 
and temptations which added new vigour to my repeated 
prayers." At length he received a letter from his son, 
by which his heart was much comforted. On another 
and different occasion lie thus describes his feelings : 
** Many a time I have poured out my soul to the Lord 
for my two sons, that God M^ould grant them special 
grace and ministerial gifts, and make use of them. 


God hath gone a considerable way in answering these 
prayers. I hope he hath given them a principle of 
saving grace, "and employed them in families and con- 
gregations where their labours have been acceptable. 
Blessed be God for mercies thus far." His affectionate 
concern for his sons did not consist in mere expressions, 
but was evident throughout the whole of his conduct 
towards them, and he had the pleasure of seeing them 
comfortably settled in life, and usefully employed in 
the church. 

As the Master ofafam'dij, he was very zealous in 
maintaining family religion. Besides the stated wor- 
ship of God M'ith his household morning and even- 
ing, he adopted other means to prove his determina- 
tion that he and his house would serve the Lord.* 
Every individual in his family was, at family worship 
in the evening, expected to give an account of the ser- 
mons preached on the Lord's day. Sometimes he de- 
voted special seasons for the purpose of family-cove- 
nanting, when each person was required in rotation to 
engage in the duty of prayer. The following is a de- 
scription of the manner in which he conducted these 
services: "Oct. 18th, 1672. I resolved to spend some 
time in family exercise, as I had preached the week be- 
fore from Zech. xii. 12, 'And the land shall mourn, 
every family apart.' Accordingly we set ourselves to it. 
I spoke something of family covenants to affect our 
hearts. My son Eliezer began, and prayed sweetly 

* It is greatly to be lamented that family religion is so much 
neglected amongst professors of religion in the present day. The 
early Nonconformists were eminent for their attention to this im- 
portant christian duty, and when properly observed it was crowned 
with remarkable success. See a beautiful picture of Family reli- 
gion as described in the " Life of Philip Henry, enlarged edition, 
by J. B. Williams," page 73 — 86 : and see the blessed effects in 
the history of the lives of his children. 


and sensibly though short ; * but John was both 
a good while, and prayed to my admiration, pleading 
with God, and using such expostulations as I wondered 
at with many tears. Then Martha, (the servant) 
prayed ; then my wife, and then I concluded. O what 
a heart-melting evening was it ! Blessed be God for the 
gift and spirit of prayer ; they are worth a world !" 

His conduct as a Relative, displayed both natural 
and christian affection. When in health he frequently 
visited his native county, not only on account of his 
civil concerns, but to promote the spiritual welfare of 
his relations. Those were very numerous, and during 
his visits he was much engaged in praying with them 
and preaching to them, that they might be saved. He 
often wrote letters to them on religious subjects, and 
when he published a book, presented each of his rela- 
tives with a copy, f When unable to take so long a 
journey, he was not unmindful of his distant relatives, 
but dedicated a small Treatise entitled "The Two 
Worlds," expressly to them. In the " Author's Epis- 
tle to his Relations in Lancashire," he thus addresses 
them : " I think no labour nor travel too much, to do 
your souls good ; but it is now come to pass that I am 
superannuated, and much incapacitated for travelling 
into your parts. I have outlived all my brothers and 
sisters, and am, within few a days, seventy years of 
age, a m.ucli longer time than I exjjected to sojourn in 
this weary world, having been under the sentence of 
death by renewed fevers four times. How long this 
frail life will yet be prolonged I cannot tell. — My dear, 

* Eliezer was at this time only fifteen, and John sixteen years 
of age. 

f The Writer has seen lists of the names of persons to whom Mr. 
H. gave copies of Jiis books, when published, and in some instances 
they amounted to near a huncked. 


and beloved kindred, I can truly say with the blessed 
apostle, ' My heart's desire and prayer to God for you 
is, that you may be saved.' You cannot but know- 
how many of our ancestors have died in the faith, and 
are gone to heaven. They have laid up many prayers 
in God's book, and put many tears in his bottle for 
their surviving posterity, which will have a resurrec- 
tion either for your conversion, or for the aggravation 
of your sin and condemnation. Though you had godly 
relations and ancestors, yet remember grace is not 
hereditary. Many pious parents of whom we read in 
scripture, had wicked children. Remember you are 
all by nature the children of wrath, and unless you are 
born again you cannot see the kingdom of God." 

Many had the happiness to call him their Friend., 
and on all occasions he was disposed to show himself 
friendly. He made those his chief companions on 
earth whose society he hoped to enjoy in the heavenly 
world. Next to communion with God he valued the 
company and conversation of his christian brethren. 
His friendship was of the most valuable nature. If any 
of his friends became distressed he was ready to relieve 
them according to his ability, or to use his influence 
with others on their behalf. If any were afflicted he 
made their case known to his Almighty Friend, who 
frequently sent remarkable answers to his supplications. 
Being a successful pleader at the throne of grace, his ac- 
quaintances so much valued his prayers, that sometimes 
he was engaged with them three or four days in a week, 
in observing days of fasting and prayer on account of 
their personal and domestic trials, or keeping days of 
thanksgiving for mercies bestowed. Mr. Dawson, his 
neighbour and most intimate companion, who had been 
ejected from Thornton chapel, often attended with him 
in these exercises, and was himself benefited by his 


prayers. "Feb. 14th, 1684," Mr. Heywood says, "I 
went to visit my dear brother, Mr. Jos. Dawson, whom 
I found wonderfully recovered from a dangerous disease, 
which it was feared would prove mortal. My heart 
had been much affected with fears of losing so useful 
an instrument. God had drawn out my heart several 
times for him, especially at a solemn fast ; and I was 
secretly persuaded from that time he would recover. 
I found him so much better this day that he desired 
me to praise God for him, which I did ; and O what 
endeared meltings of heart did God excite in me for 
hearing prayer." If differences arose between friends, 
no one was more successful in the heavenly art of 
l)eace-making than he, several instances he records, 
among which is the following: "Dec. 1st, 1693, I 
preached a preparation sermon on Eph. v. 2, ' Walk in 
love.' I ordered J. Brooksbank, and A. Lea, two of our 
communicants to come to my house, with some other 
friends, that if possible we might accommodate their 
difference of some years standing. They began stoutly, 
and used hard words, but at last were made friends 
and appear cordial. It had cost me many thoughts 
of heart and earnest prayer." Mr. H. was so highly 
esteemed by those that knew him, that many of the 
excellent, and some of the honourable of the earth ac- 
counted it a privilege to rank him in the list of their 
most intimate friends. 

His character as a Subject of the British govern- 
ment was peaceable, obedient, and loyal. There were 
many changes among the governors of this land in his 
days ;* but he interfered in politics as little as possible 
in the circumstances in which he was placed. His 

* The following singular inscription on the tombstone of John 
Okey, brother-in-law to Mr. Heywood by his second marriage, in 
Bolton churchyard, records some of those changes :— ■ 


sentiments were in favour of the Restoration, but he 
sanctioned no violent measures against the powers that 
governed during the Interregnum. When oppressive 
and cruel laws were enforced against the Noncon- 
formists by the restored sovereign, he harboured no 
revenge, but patiently submitted to the evils inflicted. 
Gladly would his enemies have accused him as a rebel 
or traitor, if there had been the shadow of pretence ; 
but they could not find any occasion against him ex- 
cept " concerning the law of his God." When James 
abdicated the throne, and William and Mary succeeded, 
he rejoiced at the event, as a friend of civil and reli- 
gious liberty. Having suffered much for conscience' 
sake, he knew how to value the liberty then enjoyed, 
and felt gratitude for the privilege. He was very fre- 
quent and earnest in his prayers for the preservation 
of the king's life, and the peace of the land, and when 
either appeared in danger, he observed special seasons 
in public or private for imploring the divine protection. 
The governing principle of Mr. Heywood's life and 


" The servant of God, was born in London, 1608, came to this 
town in 1629, married Mary the daughter of James Crompton, of 
Breightmet, 1635, with whom he lived comfortably twenty years, 
and begot four sons and six daughters. Since then he lived sole 
till the day of his death. In his time were many great changes, 
and terrible alterations. Eigliteen years civil war in England, 
besides several dreadful sea-fights — the crown or command of 
England changed eight times. Episcopacy laid aside fourteen years. 
London burnt by Papists and more stately built again. Germany 
wasted 300 miles. 200,000 Protestants murdered by Papists in 
Ireland. This town thrice stormed — once taken and phmdered. 
He went through many troubles, and divers conditions, found real 
joy and happiness only in holiness, the faith, fear, and love of God 
in Jesus Christ. He died the 29th of April, 1684, and lycth here 

" Come, Lord Jesus, come quickly. 

•' Holiness is man's happiness." 


conduct, and which constrains us in these remote days 
to venerate and love the man we never saw, was his 

In his religious profession both as a Christian and a 
minister, he was eminent for tlie spiritualiiy of his 
mind. It could be said of him as of Enoch, "he 
walked with God." Such was the influence of his 
daily communion with heaven, that common objects in 
life were made use of to spiritual purposes. " There 
is a circumstance," he observes on one occasion, "which 
though but small, hath some influence to help my de- 
votion many times, it is this : — The cushion in my 
study, on which I kneel at prayer, hath the initials of 
my first wife's maiden name, E. A. which I usually 
see when going to prayer alone. It much quickens 
my heart to consider, not only how much she prayed 
alone and is now praising God in heaven, but also her 
enlarged prayers for me, still on the file in heaven ; and 
also her serious persuading of me to the duty of secret 
prayer. It is not to tell how small a thing, if God 
give it effect, will stir up great emotions. Even the 
crowing of a cock could excite repentance in Peter." 
When for greater convenience he changed his place of 
study, he would not occupy it till he had first earnestly 
prayed for the consecrating presence of God. " Dec. 
28th, 1675," he says, " I removed my books and goods 
out of my lower study into my new study in the meet- 
ing-place chamber, which is more convenient. At 
night, after my preaching and conference that day, I 
fell on my knees, and God helped me during good part 
of an hour to confess my sins in all the other places 
I had occupied, and to give him praise for the gracious 
visitations I had in my father's house, at Cambridge, 
Landimer, Godley, this house, Norwood-green, Coley- 
hall, and in my lower study ; all these places I may 


call Peniels, for I have seen God's face in them. I 
pleaded with God that I may come with a new heart, 
spend more time with him, and feel more of his grace. 
It was a sweet, heart-melting evening. O that God 
would hear my groans, accept my tears, and be with 
me still." These may appear but trifling occurrences 
and scarcely deserving notice, but it is in little things 
the real character of a man is best discovered, there 
being a greater temptation to appear what we are not 
when the eyes of men are upon us, than when no one 
is acquainted with our thoughts and actions but God 
and ourselves. Many similar instances might be se- 
lected from his private papers, for the spirituality of 
his mind was not like a meteor, which appears only 
occasionally and for a short time, but, like the lamp in 
the ancient temple — always burning. At particular 
times it shone with a greater degree of lustre than at 
others, but it was his earnest desire it might always 
be brilliant. For this purpose, he drew up, " Rules of 
Practice, which," he says, " I desire to charge upon my 
own base heart in the course of my life. 1. Be serious, 
whether short or long, in all religious exercises. Do 
thy best in the best works. Trifle not in any thing, 
much less in the duties of religion. 2. Have special 
regard to thy thoughts ; and what thou art afraid to 
do before men, be afraid to think before God. Study 
thy heart most ; and regard that pure eye which dis- 
cerns heart-workings. 3. Let thy heart be composed 
in all states. Be set aside by nothing. O for a holy 
state of soul, that it may be under the power of no- 
thing beneath itself! Nothing can be worth the loss 
of a quiet spirit. 4. Be catholic both in principle and 
practice ; neither confine thy love to a party, nor thy 
obedience to one or more duties. Partiality is a mark 
of hypocrisy; universality, of sincerity. 5. Be con- 


tent witli witnesses above and within. Do thy best 
work invisibly to men. Let duties be done without 
outward encouragements, yea, against discouragements. 
Be better before God than before men. 6. Let special 
corruptions be crossed by peculiar grace and watchful- 
ness; and make the best fence where the hedge is lowest. 
Bend against thy inclination ; and mortify that sin 
which opposetli thy soul's peace and safety. 7. Study 
self-denial ; it is the highest and hardest lesson of the 
Christian : whatever excellencies thou hast they are 
ciphers without this. 8. Conceive of things now as 
thou wilt judge of them at death and judgment, or 
when trouble and sickness or sad accidents befall thee. 
The best way of happiness is not to be anxious about 
sublunary things, but to cure thy conceit of them. 9. 
Get thy will subdued to God's. Learn to do his will, 
or thou wilt not be able to bear it. Bear the yoke of 
commands, or thou wilt not be able to bear the yoke 
of thy cross. Let nothing displease thee that pleaseth 
God, nor any thing please thee that displeaseth him. 
10. Pray most for those that hate thee worst, for they 
need it most ; and let those coals of love fall on their 
heads and hearts. Long for their conversion. God is 
the God of vengeance, therefore meddle not with his 
prerogative. The injured side is the safer side." 

One of the most effectual means by which the 
spirituality of his mind v/as preserved, was the fre- 
quency of his approaches to the throne of grace. He 
was indeed a man of prayer ; like Jacob, " he wept 
and made supplication." The public and social duties 
of his office, as a minister, did not make him forgetful 
of his privilege as a Christian. His study was not 
only the place in which he made preparation for the 
services of the sanctuary, but his closet in which he 
maintained intercourse with his heavenly Father, who 


seeth in secret. While offering the language of prayer, 
he frequently entered into its spirit, and being brought 
to the gate of heaven, he was unwilling to leave it to 
attend to the concerns of this sinful world ; this may 
account for the frequency and length of his secret 

He was deeply conscious of his unworthiness of the 
least of God's mercies, and therefore received with 
much gratitude the many favours he enjoyed, parti- 
cularly when sent in answer to prayer. His heart 
was not " the grave of forgetfulness, but the altar of 
praise." While pursuing his journey to the heavenly 
rest he made frequent stoppages, not only to ask for 
grace to persevere to the end, but also to raise Eben- 
ezers of thanksgiving to that God who had hitherto 
helped him. He paid particular attention to the ex- 
hortation of the apostle : " By prayer and supplication, 
with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known 
unto God." He watched for seasonable opportunities, 
proper subjects, and answers of prayer, and in a book 
recorded what he considered remarkable " Returns of 
prayer."! He often regarded the state of the weather, 
and mentions several instances of successful pleading 
on this behalf. " In the autumn of 1698," he says, 
" after a very cold summer there was excessively wet 
weather, so that corn did not ripen and people could 
not reap, though there was a plentiful crop on the 

* It was not an uncommon thing for him to be engaged nearly 
an hour in secret devotion. His piece on " Closet Prayer," has 
been deservedly esteemed, and has passed through several edi- 
tions. It is a subject on which he was well qualified to write, be- 
cause it was one he constantly practised. 

t From this MS. many extracts have been given in tlie account 
of his life. The general nature of the MS. proves he was an 
attentive observer of Providence ; what are frequently termed 
common mercies, excited in him special notice and thanksgiving. 


ground. Corn arose from 24s. to 34s. a load. The 
poor bought peas and beans to make bread, the hea- 
vens continued to pour down rain, and there was a 
great outcry. It pleased God to put it into my heart 
to appoint a public fast at the chapel, on Oct. 6th. 

1 obtained the help of Mr. J. Bairstow. Many people 
came, and God made it a good day so that our hearts 
were much drawn out in prayer. He preached on 

2 Chron. vii. 14. and I on Matt. vi. 11. It was a 
happy day, and the people were much affected. God 
made that promise good : ' It shall come to pass that 
before they call I will answer.' The day before, it cleared 
up and was a pleasant and sun-shiny day, and it hath 
continued almost three weeks good harvest weather." 

Mr. Heywood often attended to the important work 
of self-exammation. This constituted a chief part of 
his employment on the return of his baptismal day, 
and was carefully observed on the Friday or Saturday 
before the sabbath on which he administered the 
Lord's supper. Beside these periodical seasons, he 
embraced other opportunities of attending to this so- 
lemn duty when he felt his mind so disposed ; and 
generally he found his reward in his work. " Feb. 
29th, 1676," he writes, " I designed to spend some 
considerable time by myself in heart searching, hum- 
bling my soul, and secret prayer ; but visiting some 
sick persons in the afternoon, I was hindered till five 
o'clock. Then went to my study, and read Psal. Ixxi, 
with which my heart was wonderfully affected. After- 
wards I confessed my sins with their aggravations, and 
poured out my soul for pardon, in v/hich God wonder- 
fully helped me with many tears. I pleaded for the 
conversion of souls, and for my children, wherein my 
feelings were very strong. While I was pleading for 
them in the bitterness of my soul, that scripture came 


to my mind in the Psalni I had been reading : ' But I 
will hope continually, and yet praise thee more and 
more ;' especially the last clause, which supported my 
spirit wonderfully. O that it may be verified ! Thus 
God helped me above an hour in my wrestling with 

By watchfulness over his own spirit he often de- 
tected the risings of pride, and mourned over them 
when others were not conscious of their activity. The 
following quotations illustrate the remark. " Aj^ril 
1st, 1672, B. Boys's wife at Halifax, being sick, I was 
sent for to visit her. I went after dinner, and having 
discoursed and prayed with her, and visited several 
friends I returned home. As I came by Halifax Bank- 
top, my horse stumbled amongst some rough stones 
and fell down ; my leg was under him, but I felt no 
hurt : blessed be God ! it was a wonderful preservation. 
Afterwards I reflected on what 1 was thinking about 
when I fell, and recollected I had been thinking of the 
great companies that had come from Halifax to Coley 
the day before, and was pleasing myself with imagin- 
ing what a great assembly I should have, if God would 
grant me liberty in the chapel. Methinks it was a sea- 
sonable correction of my pride, it did me good in after 
meditation, and gave me occasion to think on Prov. 
xvi. 18. Blessed be God for this gracious correction 
of my pride and preservation of my body." "Jan. 
27th, 1674. My house was paved, and my heart was 
too much taken up with the convenience and neatness 
of my habitation. I mispent too much time in look- 
ing over the workmen, and began to please myself with 
worldly accommodations. At night, in family prayer, 
I judged myself and confessed my sin. God graciously 
enlarged my heart, and enabled me to give up house 
and all I have to him ; O what a melting duty it was!, 
VOL, I. z 


My lieart fully re.sio-ned up all I have, if God should 
call me to leave it by death, banishment, imprison- 
ment, or confiscation. I hope I can truly say, that I 
am as willing to part with all for my Lord's sake as I 
ever was to receive it. Blessed be God that this temp- 
tation ended with a conquest." " Lord's day, August, 
1677, I was to preach at Leeds for Mr. Stretton.* 
In the morning, at E. Hicksou's, there was a great 
number of people, at whicli my heart was puffed up. 
In the afternoon, nuiltitudes came to the new meeting- 
place, and my spirit was too highly exalted with vain, 
popular applause. The 'people said there were more 
than had been seen in it since it was built. On Mon- 
day, God helped me to compose a letter to Mr. Stretton, 
and at a meeting it was subscribed to by the people : 
I tliought it well done. I was still more advanced 
with high conceits of mj'self when many came to see 
me. Several invited me to their houses to dinner, and 
on Wednesday, at the lecture, there was a great as- 
sembly of various denominations. These things did 
too much tickle me with vain-glorious opinions of my- 
self, so that I came home on Thursday with over- 
weening thoughts. But reflecting on these things the 
morning after in my retirement, I fell on my knees 
and humbled myself for the pride of my heart ; and 

* Mr. Stretton was born at Claybrook, in Leicesterhire, about 
1632, and was ejected fi-om Petworth, in Sussex. He became 
chaplain to Lord Fairfax, wlio brought him into Yorkshire. Upon 
tlie death of his patron, he removed to Leeds, where he exercised 
his ministry about seventeen years, and from thence to London, 
where he gathered a congregation tliat met for worship in tlie 
Haberdashers'-Hall. He had his share in the afflictions of the 
Nonconformists, but lived to enjoy the benefit of the Toleration 
Act. He died, July 3, 1712. His funeral sermon was preached 
by Mr. Henry, from 2 Cor. viii. 16. — See Nonconformists' Memo- 
rial, vol. iii. p. 326. — V/ilson's History of Dissenting Charclies, 
vol. iii. pp. 1-29—133. 


God debased me in my own eyes. O what a wretch am 
I that can be so soon swelled with popular applause ! 
Lord, pardon me. But for all this admiration, not all 
those people at that rich place bestowed so much as a 
penny on me, except one woman ; God seeing not ht 
that I should have both profit and honour at once, lest 
I should be exalted above measure, convincing me 
withal, of how little avail vulgar praise is towards ne- 
cessary supplies ; but no matter for either, so that good 
may be done." 

The most spiritual and holy persons are generally 
most distinguished for humility. It pleased God to 
favour Mr. Hey wood with abundant spiritual enjoy- 
ments, so that he could say, " there are few days when 
I am at home, but God and my soul meet in secret." 
But the nearer and more frequent his approaches were 
to the pure and glorious God, the more was he abased 
in himself. He was so sensible of the exceeding de- 
pravity of the human heart, that he made use of the 
most humiliating expressions concerning himself when 
addressing God in prayer. * In the renewal of his 

* " Clu-istiaiis are often ridiculed for speaking of themselves in 
depreciating terms ; especially when they call themselves, the 
vilest of the vile, or the chief of sinners. It is admitted and la- 
mented that such language may be insufferable cant ; and is 
sometimes used by persons, who give ample evidence of their not 
believing- it. When show is a substitute for reality, it is generally 
excessive. Many fish for praise with the bait of humility, and 
say things against themselves in hopes that you will contradict 
them ; but we trust you never will. It is otherwise with a real 
Christian ; he speaks according to his real views and feelings. He 
does not, however, mean that he has been the greatest profligate : 
but he knows that sin is to be estimated by its guilt ; not by its 
grossness ; and he knows more of himself than he can of others. 
He 5an only see the actions of others, and not the greater part 
even of them ; but he can look nito his own heart. He knows 
not but the sins of others will admit of extenuation ; and he ought 

z 2 


personal covenant, at the close of the year 1698, after 
observing that in his acts of charity he generally aimed 
at the tenth i)art of his income, he makes the following 
remarks : " And now, O my soul, what hast thou to 
boast of? Just nothing. Let my sins be set against 
my duties, and they will exceed them to an infinite 
extent. If I have done any thing that is good, it is 
not I, but the grace of God in me. Alas, ' the good 
that I would, I do not ; but the evil that I would not, 
that I do .' There are abundant defects in my best 
duties, and I dare not stand by the holiest of my per- 
formances for my justification. It is well if I be found 
v/orthy in a gospel sense ; for I have carried a bad 
heart with me to all I have done, I have failed both in 
the manner and end, and when I have done all, I am 
an unprofitable servant. Woe is me ! How much 
pride, hardness, deadness, unbelief, security, and dis- 
traction cleave to me ! Men see my outward acts, but 
none see my inward frames ; men would scarcely be- 
lieve what a world of sin lod^eth under a fair show. 
It is well if sin hath not dominion over me ; I am 
sure it hath great possession of me, and my iniquity 
often preponderates over my piety ; I dare not trust 
to my own righteousness. Lord, forgive the sins of 
my prayers. I must weep over my tears, yet that 
w^eeping will make God no compensation. My omis- 
sions are more than my performances ; yea, the evil of 
my performances is often, I fear, far more than the 
good in them. I am cast and condemned if the new 
testament Aaron do not bear the iniquity of my holy 
things. I depend only on Christ's sacrifice for satis- 
faction to justice, and on his intercession for the 

to be willing, as far as possible to excuse ; bnt he knows against 
what light and advantages his own transgressions have been com- 
mitted." — Jay's Short Discourses, vol. iv. p. 290 — 291. 


acceptance of my person and performances ; there I 
rest, there I centre my soul. I am nothing, I can do 
nothing, and deserve nothing but wrath. If ever God 
save me, it is grace, free grace, infinite grace ; I will 
crown grace only, coming to me through the merits of 
Jesus Christ." 

As a believer, he enjoyed the benefit of a steady 
and strong faith. When deeply humbled before 
God, under a sense of guilt, the enemy of souls was 
not permitted to tempt him to unbelief ; but he applied 
afresh to the blood of sprinkling. The fulness, free- 
ness, and efficacy of the Saviour's merits were subjects 
on which he delighted to dwell, and where these are 
cordially believed, it is impossible that the soul can 
despair. He knew in whom he had believed, and 
having committed the important concerns of his soul 
to God, and enjoying frequent communion with him, 
he was not afraid to trust him also with the manage- 
ment of his temporal affairs. Scriptural confidence, 
like every other spiritual grace, improves by exercise. 
His faith, though often tried, never ultimately failed 
him. His outward circumstances, particularly in the 
first years of persecution, were sometimes very low, 
and when almost destitute and human expectations 
proved abortive, God raised up friends and sent him 
relief at times and from places the most unlikely. 
When common mercies are received, as answers to 
believing prayers, they are increased in value almost 
beyond calculation. The whole history of Mr. H. 
abounds with proofs, that as he attentively observed 
the hand of providence, so that providence was not 
unmindful of him. Sometimes, when in great dif- 
ficulties, his conduct was influenced by the powerful 
impressions of his mind : and what an esteemed 
preacher says of another venerable servant of Christy 


may with great propriety be applied to the subject of 
this nieiiioir : " He was sober-ininded, cautious, and 
prudent ; yet it is . certain,, that in some of the most 
eventful circumstances of his life, his decision resulted 
very much at the tiine from a forcible impulse of 
mind, which he could not feel himself at liberty to 
resist, and which indeed was fully satisfactory to him- 
self. It is equally certain, that in taking these steps, 
he had no reason to repent ; but was abundantly con- 
vinced by the consequences, that they were of God. 
We must not limit the Holy One of Israel, nor yet be 
wise above what is written. Common Christians can 
hardly understand the peculiar advantages that arise 
from exalted spirituality of mind, and the most inti- 
mate degree of devotedness to, and communion with, 

Mr. Hey wood soon after his ejectment in 1662, was 
much straitened in his worldly circumstances ; but in 
the latter part of his life his situation was rendered 
comfortable. He did not rise to affluence, but with 
what some persons would consider a small income, he 
exercised great Uheral'dy. In him was proved the 
truth of that scripture : " The liberal deviseth liberal 
things, and by liberal things shall he stand." At the 
close of the year 1697, he thus wi'ites : " I think I am 
put to more charges than any minister. My house 
standing near my synagogue, there is scarcely a Lord's 
day but I have six, eight, or ten persons at dinner 
at my table, besides many others who have bread and 
broth. On sacrament days, which are every eight 
weeks, we have usually about twenty that eat with 
us. Any one would think this course could not be 
tolerated. To this I must reply, (which is a wonder 
tp myself,) that notwithstanding this and the frequent 
* Jay's Life of Winter, page 360. 


acts of charity I am called to, yet I perceive I grow 
richer. It may be said, how can all this be done out 
of my small income ? I have some yearly rents 
coming in from Lancashire, about £14. a-year. £7. 
a-year from Sowerby ; and of late, £7- 15s. from 
Holdsworth. Lady Hewley hath usually given me 
£5. a-year, and Lord Wharton, £3. Sometimes I 
have something given me when I travel abroad, 
though old age hath lately cut me oif from that occa- 
sional supply. Sometimes I have something for fune- 
ral sermons, and other gifts dropping in, sent by the 
wise providence of God to encourage my faith. I have 
also a notable, prudent, provident wife, who manageth 
matters both frugally and handsomely, and makes a 
little go a great way ; besides, I spend nothing waste- 
fully. But the blessing of God is the main thing 
that maketh rich and addeth not sorrow ; this I have 
found by abundant experience many years. Some, 
who have had five times my income, have been in great 
straits. Mrs. Hyde said to my father Angier, surely 
God works miracles at your table, for if I were to set 
twice as much provision before such a company they 
would think they were famished. This is like the 
woman's barrel of meal and cruise of oil. Blessed be 
God, that though I have not planned and plodded 
about worldly matters, yet the Lord hath wonderfully 
supplied me. O for a thankful heart and a fruitful 

As a minister of the gospel, Mr. Heywood's talents 
made him eminent among those " that turn many to 
righteousness." He sometimes lamented the weakness 
of his natural capacity, and regretted he had not paid 
a closer attention in his youthful days to philosophical 
pursuits ; " I prize learning," he says, " above all 
sublunary excellencies, and I might have been more 


useful had I improved my time better therein." If he 
did not excel as a profound mathematician, an acute 
reasoner, or a critical linguist, he was a " scribe well 
instructed unto the kingdom of heaven ;" and if he 
could not be compared to the man who had five talents, 
he carefully employed to the glory of God those with 
which his Lord had entrusted him. All his attain- 
ments were subservient to the "perfecting of the 
saints, the work of the ministry, and the edifying of 
the body of Christ." In directing the attention of 
men to the important concerns of their souls, whether 
in the parlour or pulpit, at the sick bed or from the 
press, he felt himself at home. Living in the daily 
enjoyment of spiritual godliness himself, his preaching 
and writings were mostly on experimental and prac- 
tical subjects. He was well acquainted with the hu- 
man heart, and much of his usefulness proceeded from 
his powerful and affectionate addresses to the consciences 
of men. He also possessed the happy art of illustrating 
divine truths by interesting anecdotes, by which the 
attention of his hearers was more excited, and the sub- 
jects more deeply imj)ressed on their understanding 
and memory.* 

* Mr. Job Orton in a letter adcbessecl to the late Mr. Hughes, 
of Bury, says : " The life of IMr. Heywood is worth your perusal, 
as he seems to have been a very considerable man for his age. — 
I could wish 3'ou to borrow of your congregation any books of 
their old divines, who lived in Lancashire and the neighbourhood, 
which they have in their houses. Some of them are extremely 
valuable, as those of Pendlebury, Nath. and Oliver Heywood, 
Aired, &c. They were men of distinguished ability, and eminent 
piety and zeal. Though some of their sentiments are indefensible, 
and their language low and mean, yet there is a savour of piety, 
seriousness, and concern for the interests of religion, and so much 
experience of human nature, and the workings of the heart, as are 
hardly to be met with in any modern compositions. There are 
also many little and instructive and striking stories, which may 


His method of preaching partook of the peculiarities 
of the age in which he lived, and would not perhaps 
be generally acceptable in these days. He delivered 
good and wholesome truths in a plain, homely manner. 
One peculiar excellence may be observed in his writ- 
ings, which contained the substance of what he preached, 
namely, a constant aim at simpUcity. He endeavoured 
to make himself understood by all whom he addressed, 
fully persuaded that a person cannot be benefitted by 
what he does not understand. " If his preaching," 
says Dr. Fawcett, " might, by himself, be called talk- 
ing, it was talking to the purpose : and such a mode 
of preaching is perhaps better suited to the capacities 
of a common audience than a more smooth and polished 
manner of address, which, though it may please the 
ear and gratify the taste of persons of refinement, is 
not so well calculated to answer the great end of preach- 
ing. A free and familiar address quickens the atten- 
tion, arouses the conscience, and comes home to the 
heart of the hearers."* He who spake as never man 
spake, has given his ministers a perfect model of the 
manner of preaching. In his discourses, the most im- 
portant and glorious truths are illustrated by natural 
objects, and thus brought down in parables to the 
capacities of the young and ignorant. The great 
apostle to the Gentiles asserts, that he would rather 
speak five words with his understanding, that he might 
teach others, than ten thousand words in an unknown 
tongue. This was also Mr. Heywood's determination, 

be well adopted, and would render a discourse in which they are 
introduced popular, pleasing, and useful." — Orion's Letters to 
Dissenting Ministers, vol. i. page 113, 114. 

* Similar observations are to be found in the interesting Life of 
Philip Henry, concerning his method of preaching. See his life 
enlarged and corrected by J. B. Williams, page 192. 


and contributed much to the general acceptance and 
usefuhiess of his ministry. 

In attending to the duties of his office as a minister 
of Christ, he manifested great fervour of sjyirii. His 
heart was in his work, and therefore he spoke and 
acted as a man in earnest. His many and severe per- 
secutions would have been to some a strong tempta- 
tion to neglect ministerial employment, at least, when 
most exposed to dangers ; but having set his hand to 
the plough, he could not think of looking back : neces- 
sity was laid upon him to preach the gospel, and the 
love of Christ constrained him. Tears were often 
mingled with his intercessions at the throne of grace, 
especially when engaged in social exercises and in sea- 
sons of persecution or trial ; and while they showed 
how much his own heart was affected, produced a 
similar influence on others. When preaching the gos- 
pel of the kingdom, he could say, " that which we have 
seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may 
have fellowship with us ; and truly our fellowship is 
with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ." He 
felt the vast importance of the work in which he was 
ensfaffed, and was convinced that his Master in heaven 
would require him to give an account of his stewardship ; 
with these impressions he could not but be fervent. 
He knew that the everlasting happiness or misery of 
the souls of the people depended on their acceptance or 
rejection of the gospel, he therefore so studied and 
preached as to save himself and those that heard him. 
To some, his fervour of spirit may appear bordering 
on enthusiasm, but having learnt the value of his own 
soul, he thought nothing he could do or suffer too 
much to " save a soul from death, and hide a multi- 
tude of sins." 

His nonconformity was an evidence of his conscieti' 


iiousness. He was a lover of peace, but would not 
sacrifice what appeared to him to be truth for the sake 
of outward ease. The temptation to conformity was 
very powerful, but it had no prevailing influence on 
him. At the time the Act of Uniformity passed, he 
observed : " There are carnal advantages enough to 
sway to conformity, did not conscience answer all the 
pleas of flesh and blood. At present, our work is to 
be well satisfied with the ground of our suffering ; the 
conditions are two hard to be accepted." Twenty-one 
years after his ejectment, he says : " I am so fully 
satisfied that my nonconformity as a minister is the 
way of God, and I have so much peace in my spirit 
that what I do in the main is according to God's word, 
that if I knew of all these troubles beforehand and 
were to begin again, I would persist in this course to 
my dying day." When driven from the public exercise 
of his ministry by his ejectment, and prevented attend- 
ing public ordinances by his excommunication, he 
resolved to preach occasionally in his own house on 
the Lord's day, to those of his former hearers who 
were willing to attend. He did not, however, form 
this resolution without the most serious examination 
and prayer, nor until he was persuaded it was the will 
of God. 

Such was Mr. Heywood's disinterestedness, that the 
prospect of suffering or fatigue never diverted him 
from the path of duty. Though his income from 
the people among whom he laboured was very small, 
and he was the means of obtaining pecuniary relief for 
some of his poor brethren, he sought none for himself. 
After giving an account of various sums he had re- 
ceived from Lord Wharton's executors, to distribute 
among different ministers in his neighbourhood or of 
his acquaintance, he remarks : " All this, and much 


more is given to other ministers, but nothing to my- 
self ; and, indeed, it is not because I have been denied, 
but because I have not asked any thing, yet I am apt 
to think that there are scarce any of them but receive 
more from their people than I do." When he was 
invited to large and opulent congregations he resolved 
to spend the remainder of his days in the neighbour- 
hood where he had so long laboured with success. 
Whenever an opportunity of preaching the unsearch- 
able riches of Christ presented itself he cheerfully em- 
braced it, though sometimes the expenses of his 
journey were greater than the intended remuneration. 
Many instances of this nature might be selected from 
his MSS. similar to the following: "March 28th, 1692, 
I rode to preach at J. R.'s in Haworth town. God 
greatly assisted my heart in weeping and wrestling 
with him for the conversion of sinners, and in preach- 
ing on Isaiah Iv, 7. There was a great crowd of peo- 
ple and they were attentive. Who knows what good 
may be done ? The same day, being Easter Monday, 
the Vicar of Bradford sat all day in an alehouse, ga- 
thering his dues in Haworth parish. There was wont 
always to be a sermon in the church that day, but 
Mr. P. had laid it aside. Many flocked to him to pay 
the Easter reckonings, which came to about £lO. and 
then came to hear me : I had nothing for my pains, 
except some four or five put sixpence a-piece into my 
hand. I rode fourteen miles there and back, and was 
greatly comforted in my day's work, and thought it 
was better than his. Though my worldly gains were 
short, yet, may I gain one soul to Christ by my hard 
labour, and I shall be satisfied. 

Mr. Heywood possessed too great a sense of the 
value of time and the important nature of his office to 
be inactive. He considered his abilities and oppor- 


t unities of usefulness as talents to be employed with 
diligence in his Master's service. He spent much of 
his time in his study, partly for the promotion of the 
life of religion in his soul, and partly to furnish him- 
self with proper materials for the work in which he 
was engaged. It was his custom to rise at an early 
hour and devote a considerable portion of time to 
secret duty, in which he not only prayed, but read two 
and sometimes three chapters in successive order. He 
was assiduous in the pursuit of knowledge, but all his 
attainments were consecrated on the altar of God. 
His method in his pulpit preparations, was, after he 
had chosen a text, to implore divine direction in com- 
posing a large skeleton ; these notes he generally took 
with him into the pulpit, leaving himself at liberty to 
make use of any ideas or modes of expression that 
might be suggested at the time of delivery. His dili- 
gence was not confined to his study, and he could not 
be classed among some good men who are " laboriously 
doing nothing." Considering the peculiar circum- 
stances in which he was placed, few ministers have ex- 
ceeded him in the number of his engagements and la- 
bours in the gospel. He was a preacher fifty-two 
years, and only about half that number were years of 
liberty. From a regular statement it appears, that 
from 1665, at which time the conventicle act passed, 
till 1701 inclusive, a term of thirty-seven years, seven- 
teen of which only were years of public liberty, and 
most of them after he had reached sixty years of age, 
he preached on week-days, besides his regular work 
on the Lord's day, 3027 sermons, kept 1256 fasts, ob- 
served 314 thanksgiving days, and travelled on preach- 
ing excursions 31,345 miles. . 



A Statement of the Sermons preached hy Mr. Heyivood on 
the Week Days, the Fasts a?id Thanksgiving Days he 
observed, and the Nuniher of Miles he travelled in his 
Masters Service in each Year. 

A. D.. Sei-ms. Fsts. Tkgs. TrvDeil. A. D. Serms. Fsts. Tk^'s. Trvlled. 

















1669 c 



. 4 




• 8 

































































































1689 A 





1690 1 



























































a This was the year after the passing of the Conventicle Act, when Mr. 
Heywood commenced his account of his itinerant labours, &c. 

h The Five-mile Act took place this year. 

c A proclamation was published this year requiring Justices strictly to en- 
force the laws against the Nonconformists. 

d liicenses were granted this year, 

e The licenses were recalled in the spring of this vear. 

/ This year Mr. Heyivood was confined in York C;istle. He had liberty ta 
preach in his chamber while confined, and his only journeys were to and from 

g The year of the glorious Revolution. Mr. H. was now in his sixtieth 
year. From this time he kept a register of the children he baptized, who 
amounted this year to the number of 22. 

h Baptized 21 children. 

i Baptized 20 children. 

k Mv. H. was confined two months to his house by sickness this year. Bap- 
tized 20 children. 

/ Baptized 20 children. 


His reasons for making and occasionally reviewing 
this account are thus expressed : "1. That I might in 
this respect number my days, according to Psal. xc. 
12; at least to know thereby how my time passeth, 
which I find is quicker than I was aware, and that I 
might reflect on what I have done or misdone in my 
past days. 2. That I may act in some way suitably 
to God's dispensations : thou teilest my wanderings, 
Psal. Ivi. 8. If my Lord takes notice of my wander- 
ings, shall not I ? God reckoned Israel's wilderness 
stages, and required them to remember them, Deut. 
viii. 2. 3. God's servants in scripture, have reckoned 
their travels and voyages, and what befell them ; as 
Jacob, Gen.xlviii. 7—16. Paul, 2Cor. xi. 23—27. And 
I may say something, through grace of my labours, 
though far short of blessed Paul's. 4, This may vindi- 
cate our persons and work in the sight of men, who 
asperse us for idleness, and say, they wonder what M'e 
do, and think we have easy lives ; in this we can ap- 
peal to our Lord. 5. Hereby appears the strange 
providence of God in crossing men's designs ; they shut 
our mouths, but God opens them wider ; they scatter, 
but God gathers people ; they confine, but God en- 
largeth ; they banish, but God makes every place a 
Bethel : thus Satan is outshot by his own bow ; Gen. 
1. 20. Deut. xxiii. 5. 6. The review of past provi- 

m Baptized 22 children, and wrote several Treatises. 

n Wrote six Treatises, and printed two. 

o W'rote six Treatises, but printed none except Job's Appeal. 

p Wrote four Treatises, but printed none — also, one hundred Letters. 

q Wrote four Treatises and one hundred and twenty-three Letters. At- 
tended six meetings of ministers. 

r Wrote four Treatises and one hundred and twenty Letters. 

5 Wrote seven Treatises and one hundred and forty seven I^etters. 

t Unable to travel. Baptized eight children. Attended eight conferences. 
Wrote seven Treatises and one hundred and four Letters, 


dences may afterwards be of singular use to my own 
soul, in humbling my heart, making me tinist in God 
for the future, and teaching me not to despair in greater 
straits whatever may befall me, since the same God is 
all-sufficient ; Lam. iii. 19, 20. 2 Cor. i. 7, 8. 7. 
There is a necessity for setting my accounts straight, 
and taking a review of my life and actings, for God will 
call me to an account of my stewardship, as to the im- 
proving of my gifts and spending of my time, O ! that 
I could keep right reckoning, and say as God's servants, 
Isaiah xxxviii. 3. 2 Cor. i. 12. 8. By these means 
I discover and consider where I have been sowing the 
seed of the word, and how it comes up, what fruit it 
brings forth. My case is parallel to theirs, mentioned 
Matt. X. 23. I remain but a short time in one place ; 
but O that any fruit may remain ! It may be, fruit will 
appear when I am gone ; John iv. 37, 38. x. 41, 42. 
9. This may be an example to my sons, to quicken 
them to diligence in their Master's work, since they 
also are devoted to God, and are now engaged in his 
service. In me they may read a monument of divine 
providence. Though turned out by men, yet taken in 
by God, and as much employed as ever. Should they 
be debarred of service in one place, God will open a 
door in another, and if God cut outwork he will bestow 
a reward ; though I am most unworthy, yet I can say 
as Paul did, 1 Cor. xi. 1. 1 Thess. ii. 1—11. 10. What 
I act or declare herein, I aim at God's glory chiefly, 
who hath called me by his grace to the ministry, pro- 
vided work for me, given me a heart to embrace calls 
to do my Lord service, strength of body and mind, 
some pleasing success, and caused my troubles for the 
gospel to tend to its furtherance, and that I may be of 
some use in my generation, Phil. i. 12. 1 Cor. x. 31." 


The doctrinal seiitiments of Mr. He3^woofl, which 
he embraced and maintained in common with his bre- 
thren the ejected ministers, were those which, for the 
sake of distinction, have been denominated Calvinistic ; 
which, as forming a system of faith, those holy men of 
God drew not from any human source, but directly 
from the pure fountain of revelation ; which were 
stated by the Presbyterian divines in the Larger and 
Shorter Catechisms drawn up at Westminster, and by 
the Independents in the Declaration of their Faith and 
Order, adopted in their meeting at the Savoy, in 1658. 
For at that period the Nonconformists, with a very 
few exceptions, had among them no diversity of doc- 
trines. Their creeds were distinguished by their uni- 
formity, how much soever they might differ on the 
subject of church government. 

It may perhaps be considered as not out of place, to 
introduce some observations here on the changes which 
have occurred in the circumstances of dissenters of 
the Presbyterian. and Independent denominations, or if 
they be regarded as a digression, their bearing on the 
general interests of dissenters may warrant their intro- 
duction. The following passage is extracted from the 
History and Antiquities of Dissenting Churches in 
London, by Walter Wilson, Esq. ; a work which 
has not had that circulation among dissenters which 
might have been expected from its merits : " The 
whole face of nonconformity has undergone a very 
material alteration since the first establishment of our 
churches. Their founders were universally men of 
learning and judgment, wholl)^ devoted to their work 
and distinguished by an ardent zeal for the diffusion 
of vital religion. At the same time, they were not' 
indifferent to the principles of separation. Whilst 
they taught forbearance and charity to their perse- 
VOL. L 2 a 


cutors, they took joyfully the spoiling of their goods, 
and counted not their lives dear unto them, when put 
in competition with the cause they had espoused. By 
means of their preaching, conversation, and other me- 
thods of instruction, nonconformity flourished, their 
churches multiplied, and in many places they had large 
and attentive congregations. Their hearers also were 
distinguished by a regard to serious religion, as well 
as by their attachment to the cause for which they 
suffered. In those days, men of rank and influence 
were not ashamed to patronize the Nonconformists. 
Many received them into tlieir houses as chaplains or 
tutors to their children, and some attended their reli- 
gious services, on which account they often screened 
them from the malice of their enemies. The succes- 
sors to the ejected ministers were men of a like spirit, 
and no less distinguished for their literary attain- 
ments, than for their ardent devotedness to the service 
of God and the salvation of souls. Their labours for 
the instruction of the rising generation, the extra- 
ministerial services iu which they engaged, the public 
lectures they conducted, and the works they published 
for the purpose of fostering religious dispositions in 
their people, all bear evidence to the value of their 
characters and the utility of their exertions. 

" After the decease of the second race of Noncon- 
formists, a more dismal prospect opens to our view. 
A state of ease had corrupted many from the simpli- 
city of the gospel, and the snares of the world had 
induced others to desert the religion of their fore- 
fathers. To this, the operation of the Test Act and 
other penal lavrs greatly contributed. With the new 
race of ministers, a different mode of preaching began 
to be introduced : some of the younger sort, wishing 
to be thouglit polite, paid more attention to the com- 
position of a sermon, than to the important matter 


which it should have contained. The prevalence of 
infidelity furnished others with constant topics of dis- 
course ; but as they did not preach to infidels, the 
people ceased to be interested in v/hat they heard, and 
then it is no wonder that they grew indifferent ; but 
that which contributed most to the decline of the dis- 
senting interest was, the change v/hich took place in 
their doctrinal sentiments. 

" A great majority of the ejected ministers were at- 
tached to the Presbyterian discipline, and the churches 
they founded were arranged under that denomination ; 
but they maintained a friendly correspondence with 
their Congregational brethren until the fatal disputes 
concerning subscription effectually divided them. 
From that time, the Presbyterians have continued to 
decline in a very progressive manner, till their congre- 
gations have been ruined, and, in many instances, their 
meeting-houses have been shut up. As they pro- 
ceeded in their course of declension, and as liberality 
grew into fashion, the divines of the new school began 
to preach up the innocency of mental error, and the 
celebrated lines of Pope were appealed to with as 
much confidence, as any one would quote a text of 
scripture to support a doctrine. Considerable progress 
being now made towards undermining the necessity of 
revelation, it is no v/onder that the light of nature 
became exalted, and huge volumes were v/ritten to 
delineate the beauties of natural religion. This pre- 
pared the way for rejecting those doctrines of revela- 
tion, which were supposed to m.ilitate against the 
reason and fitness of things, and the wisdom of the 
Almighty being brought down to a level with human 
comprehension, their S5'stem began to be applauded 
even by the infidels themselves."* 

* Vol. iv. pages 552 — 554. 
2 A 2 

356 Lin: of the uev. o. tieywood. 

After the Presbyterians no longer professed ad- 
herence to the doctrines of their fathers, which had 
been sanctioned by the celebrated JVest minster Assem- 
My, as the standard of orthodoxy, " the mantle of the 
ejected ministers was transferred to the Independents. 
These were at first a much smaller body than the 
other, but the number of their churches gradually in- 
creased, and their interests became very considerable. 
It is greatly to their honour, that amidst surrounding- 
declensions, they continued stedfast in the faith once 
delivered to the saints." Without a hierarchy, without 
presbyteries, or synods, or a general assembly, without 
even any visible bond of union, and having almost the 
appearance of a rope of sand, the Independent churches, 
from the days of Dr. Owen to the present time, have 
uniformly maintained the same doctrinal sentiments, 
or if any faint shades of diversity are perceivable 
among them now, the same varieties of opinion may 
be traced, as existing among them a hundred and fifty 
years ago. 

But to what shall such uniformity be ascribed, uni- 
formity which is so rare a feature of any other ecclesi- 
astical community, which neither his Holiness of Rome 
with all his pretensions to infallibility, nor the Acts 
of an English legislature, nor the decisions of Scot- 
land's General Assembly have been able to accomplish? 
To this question, a plain answer can be given — atten- 
tion and obedience to the precedents and rules of the 
New Testament, have done what no human power or 
policy can ever do. The members of the first christian 
churches are characterized by the inspired writers as 
" saints," that is, holy persons who had given satisfac- 
tory evidence of having been " washed, and sanctified, 
and justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the 
Spirit of our God." They are also denominated the 
"faithful," or believers in Christ Jesus, who had obtained 


" like precious faitb" as the apostles themselves had, 
and they are described as having "purified their souls in 
obeying the truth through the Spirit — being born again, 
not of corruptible seed, but incorruptible, by the word 
of God, which liveth and abideth for ever." Such were 
the constituents of the primitive churches, which the 
Independents regard as their models, and hence neither 
knowledge, nor moral respectability unaccompanied by 
experimental religion, is with them a sufficient qualifi- 
cation for admission into their societies ; but it is ex- 
pected at the same time, that their avowed religious 
experience be evidenced, by the regularity of their lives 
and conversation, their peaceable dispositions, and their 
attachment to the means of grace. Now when due 
care is taken to form churches on this plan, it may be 
justly calculated, that a majority at least of the mem- 
bers will bear the character of the first Christians, as 
delineated by the pen of inspiration; and if the majority 
are of this description, they will manifest no indiffer- 
ence, when on the election of a minister, it is necessary 
to decide respecting the piety of a candidate for their 
suffrages. " The piety also of the individual members 
will be promoted, when evidence of piety is the only 
qualification for membership, when piety forms the 
very end and bond of union, when the forfeiture of 
pious character is the forfeiture of membership, and 
when every office, when every institution is directed 
to the simple purpose of edification. Where no worldly 
mixtures are tolerated, where no human authorities are 
recognised, and where no worldly objects are pursued, 
there personal religion is likely to flourish. — Besides, 
this order of things v/ill be equally conducive to the 
preservation of the doctrines of truth. Form a reli- 
gious society on the scriptural model, let accredited 
piety be the qualification of membership, give to the 


members the power of discipline, and let discipline be 
exercised according to the minutely prescribed rules of 
the New Testament, and among them ti'uth will be 
preserved. It is matter of fact, that the churches, the 
order of which has been now described, have without 
any human creed been usually harmonious ; even in 
the minutest points of their theological system, they 
have seen almost eye to eye. And if exceptions be 
pointed out, we may usually discover derelictions from 
the Congregational system, preceding departures from 
scripture truth. "WTien personal piety is the pre-re- 
quisite for membership, the great doctrines of the gos- 
pel must be maintained, not merely in theory, but in 
deed and in truth." * 

Among the things which contributed materially to 
preserve among the Independents, the faith of the ori- 
ginal Nonconformists, and to increase their numbers, 
may be reckoned the caution generally observed during 
the last seventy years in the introduction of students 
into their academical institutions. Among dissenters, 
the first seminaries were of a mixed character: the sons 
of opulent dissenters, without any profession in view, 
and others intended for the bar, or the practice of 
medicine, or the pursuits of trade and commerce, were 
admitted along with candidates for the ministry. Nor 
was this the only evil Vv^hich operated to the disadvan- 
tage and prejudice of their institutions. According to 
the fond wishes and partialities of parents, youth with- 
out giving any substantial evidence of personal piety, 
were often introduced into them, that they might be 
prepared for assuming the ministerial character ; and 
then followed a description of ministers who proved 
the bane of dissenting churches. When no investiga- 

* Discourses nt the Recognition of Mv. Fox, as minister at 
Hull, page 30, 31. 


tioii had taken place to ascertain their personal religion, 
many aspired at the pastoral office, who having no con- 
cern for their own salvation, could not be expected to 
feel concern for the salvation of others ; the conse- 
quence was, that the congregations of dissenters began 
to sink into an awful state of torpid indifference, and 
to approach the verge of annihilation. But in later 
periods, the academical institutions established and 
patronized by the zealous friends of religion, both in 
the metropolis and the country, have under the bless- 
ing of Heaven, been the means of introducing a pleasing 
change in the circumstances of the Independent denomi- 
nation ; for they have not only emitted a steady light, 
but diffused a genial warmth where the frosts of win- 
ter had benumbed the energies of spiritual life. The 
care employed in their management, to prevent the ad- 
mission of men destitute of real religion, contributed 
greatly to secure the accomplishment of the object in 
contemplation. The students undergo the scrutiny 
which precedes the reception of members in Congre- 
gational churches ; when they have had some standing 
in church fellowship, they must be recommended by 
the pastors and members of the churches to which they 
belong, as possessing genuine piety and promising gifts ; 
on offering themselves for admission into seminaries, 
they are required to produce a statement of their reli- 
gious experience, the motives which influence them 
in becoming candidates for the ministry, and the lead- 
ing articles of their faith. After which, they remain 
in the Academy some months on probation, before they 
are admitted to all the advantages of the Institu- 
tion. When any applicant is a stranger to the power 
of godliness, he must be no ordinary adept in hypo- 
crisy, if he can pass such an ordeal without detection. 
Such is the mode of admission which has been gene- 


rally adopted, for a considerable time, in nearly all our 
academical institutions, and the results have been 
highly favourable to the increase and prosperity of our 
congregations and churches. In the West-Riding of 
Yorkshire, which had been the principal sphere of Mr. 
Heywood's labours, a religious seminary, formed on 
the plan which has been just now described, was es- 
tablished in 1756; and there is one thing which im- 
pressed a peculiar character on this institution. At 
the period of its establishment and some time after, the 
labours of GiiiMSHAW and Venn in the church, and 
the itinerant exertions of Whitfield and Wesley, 
the celebrated founders of Methodism, gave an extra- 
ordinary impulse to the population. In these circum- 
stances, young men whose hearts God had touched, and 
who had imbibed a large measure of the spirit which 
prevailed, came forward and entered on studies prepa- 
ratory to the work of the ministry; blending zeal for the 
everlasting welfare of their fellow men, with their de- 
sire to augment their qualifications for the stated dis- 
charge of ministerial duties, they made frequent excur- 
sions into the populous district around them, to excite 
the attention of the careless to the things of religion, 
to save those that were ready to perish, and to diffuse 
the knowledge of the truth. Their attainments in 
literature might not equal those which were made in 
preceding dissenting academies, where students were 
confined to classical and philosophical pursuits till they 
had completed, or nearly completed, the course of edu- 
cation. But if they had less knowledge of the predi- 
caments of Aristotle or the quantity of syllables in 
the plays of Sophocles, they knew more of the gospel 
of Jesus Christ, they had more facility in dispensing 
the truth, and greater skill in directing the arrows of 
conviction to the consciences of men, and they were 


honoured with extensive usefuhiess, and ultimately- 
occupied important stations in the church of God. 

In contrasting the early religious seminaries of dis- 
senters, and especially of Presbyterian dissenters, with 
those of more modern date, for the purpose of exhibit- 
ing the different results which followed in consequence 
of their different regulations, another consideration 
may be stated, which contributed not a little towards 
the unpreparedness of students in the first dissenting 
academies for the discharge of public duties ; they were 
kept close to their mathematical and literary studies, 
and for the greatest part, if not the whole, of their 
period of education prevented from exercising any 
ability which they might possess to qualify them for 
discharging acceptably the office of preachers ; the con- 
sequence was, that being untrained for any thing ap- 
proaching a popular mode of address, they often con- 
tented themselves with becoming lifeless readers of 
sermons. But as far as dissenters of the Independent 
denomination are concerned, things have undergone 
an important change, the evils to which allusion has 
been made have been remedied, their academies are in 
prosperous circumstances, every thing that wisdom can 
suggest has been done to render their machinery effi- 
cient ; such as have been educated in them are, with 
few exceptions, a credit to their profession and have 
become the means of extensive usefulness ; some of 
them, by the brilliancy of their talents, reflect a lustre 
on the age in which they live. 

In bringing this digression to a close, it may not be 
imdeserving of remark, that here a striking instance of 
the inadequacy of human wisdom to accomplish its pro- 
jects occurs for consideration. Uniformity was to the 
Presbyterians an object of great solicitude, and among 
different denominations of professed Christians has 


been attempted to be secured by creeds, and subscrip- 
tions, and oaths, by pains and penalties, and the blood 
of human victims. But after a long trial Presby- 
terianism, however it might otherwise succeed, com- 
pletely failed to produce uniformity of doctrinal senti- 
ments ; for in none of the classes into which the chris- 
tian world is divided, can there be found greater di- 
versities of opinion than have existed among the Eng- 
lish Presbyterians. Far otherwise has the case been 
with the Independents ; without the interposition of 
human authority, or any political or compulsory means, 
they have maintained the faith of the first Noncon- 
formists, without the slightest variation, to the present 

The following observations on this subject from a 
Critical Journal, whose predilections are certainly not 
in favour of Calvinistic sentiments, are coincident with 
the preceding remarks: " It is curious indeed to observe, 
how the subsequent history and fortunes of each of 
these bodies, (Presbyterians and Independents) have 
been determined by the characteristic difference of 
their original constitution. The moderate aristocracy 
of Presbyterianism, as long as Presbyterianism could 
be said to have any form of government, enabled its 
ministers to follow their own inclinations, with regard 
to the manner of conducting public worship, and the 
strain of preaching; while the jealous democracy of 
Independency kept the minister under the eye and 
the controul of his people, and punished the first 
appearance of deviation, though merely negative, from 
the standard of orthodoxy. The Presbyterian ministers 
became men of polished manners, partook largely of 
the biblical knowledge, and the elegant and scientific 
literature of the age, dropped in every generation 
something of the orthodoxy of their forefathers, and 


while their flocks gradually diminished, contented 
themselves with being the rational instructors of the 
few, rather than the idols of the multitude. Of late, 
they seem to have discovered that as a religious com- 
munity they must speedily become extinct by adhering 
to this plan : new controversies have sprung up among 
them, and though, with a new principle of cohesion 
and repulsion, they may still maintain themselves as a 
distinct body, the history of Preshytericmism, as a sect 
deducing itself from the time of the great separation 
from the Establishment in 1662, must be considered as 
very nearly closed."* 

At the time Mr. Heywood was introduced into the 
work of the ministry, the Preshyterian form of church 
government was predominant in England. Where it 
was established, every congregation had its eldership, 
and several elderships in a district constituted a classis, 
at whose meetings ministers were ordained, and the 
general concerns of the churches within that district 
were attended to. These classes maintained inter- 
course by a provincial assembly, which for the county 
of Lancaster was generally held at Preston, to which 
all final appeals were made. Mr. H. was ordained by 
the classis assembling at Bury, in Lancashire, not far 
from his native place. When he undertook the charge 
at Coley, he attempted to establish, as far as existing 
circumstances permitted, the preshyterian discipline, 
in which he partly succeeded ; and when licenses were 
granted in 1672, he formed a church at Northowram, 
and conducted it on the principles, of moderate pres- 
byterianism. Though he approved of this form of 
church government, he was no bigot to modes of wor- 
ship, but cordially esteemed all that loved the Lord 
Jesus Christ in sincerit)^ He lived on the most affec- 
* Monthly Review, N.S. vol. Ixjcxi. 411. 


tionate terms with Mr. Thomas Jollie, of Wymond- 
Houses, and Mr. Timothy Jollie, of Sheffield, who 
were both decided congregationalists, and united with 
them in the ordination of ministers. So moderate was 
he in his principles, and so similar in many respects 
were the sentiments and practices of the English 
Presbyterians at that time to those of the Indepen- 
dents, that the church at Northowram, a few years 
after its formation, consisted partly of Independents, 
though chiefly of Presbyterians. Happy will that 
day be, when all minor distinctions between the fol- 
lowers of the Lamb shall be lost in the general name 
of Christians, when Ephraim shall not envy Judah, 
and Judah shall not vex Ephraim. 

The success with which it pleased God to crown the 
labours of Mr. Heywood, was unusual, and such as 
will be fully known only at the last day. Mr. Baxter 
observes : " That our success commonly bears a much 
more exact proportion to our design, our desire, and 
our hope than we imagine." If this be correct, we 
need not wonder that Mr. H. was so successful in his 
ministerial work. Few men were more diligent in 
labours, or more earnest, benevolent, and pure in their 
desires than he. He entertained the most exalted 
ideas of the ministerial work, as the means by which 
the cause of Christ is to be advanced. " To be instru- 
mental in converting a sinner," he observes, " is to do 
more than Alexander did, in conquering the world. 
To subjugate a soul to Christ, is more than to have 
the necks of emperors at my footstool : yea, it is a 
thousand times more precious and glorious than to be 
master and owner of all the mines of Ophir and India. 
Hadst thou, my soul, been spending thyself in secret 
tears and trials, and public prayers and pains in dili- 
gently spreading the gospel net all thy days, and hadst 


drawn but one soul to Jesus Christ, that reward would 
be richly worth them all ; but that in so few years 
thou shouldst become the spiritual father of so numer- 
ous an offspring, this is rich grace !" Influenced by 
these sentiments, it was natural that he should make 
the conversion of souls to Christ the subject of his 
daily prayers, and the object of his constant exertions. 
Many pious and useful servants of Christ are uncon- 
scious of the real success of their labours, and perhaps, 
at the time, they are most distressed on this account, 
God is giving them souls for their hire. It was the 
privilege of Mr. H. not only to be useful, but to be fa- 
voured with the knowledge of many instances of suc- 
cess, especially in prohibited places, and persecuting 
times. "Jan. 21st, 1676," he thus writes, "I went to 
a meeting at Capt. Hodgson's ; when I came there, I 
found some persons I knew not ; Mr. Hodgson told 
me they were some young men who were my hearers, 
hopeful for religion, and that they had set up a monthly 
meeting for prayer ; but as I was come, they desired 
me to spend some time in discourse. I begged a bless- 
ing, and Mr. Hodgson and N. Barker prayed, during 
which God much affected my heart, especially in the 
latter's affectionate requests for me and my sons. After- 
wards I took a text, Zech. iv. 6, ' Not by might, nor by 
power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord of hosts.' I 
intended only a few words extempore, but having be- 
gun and raised a doctrine, God cast into my mind 
abundance of matter suitable to the text and comjDany, 
far beyond my expectation. I spent about an hour in 
that work, comfortably to myself, and I hope profitably 
to others, and then concluded with prayer, wherein 
God wonderfully enlarged my heart." "Jan. 20th. I am 
pressed in spirit to take notice of the fruit of my poor la- 
bours and returns of prayer, which are best evidenced by 


the increase of visible professors, private meetings, and 
forwardness therein. There are four meetings among 
my hearers about home, and three about Warley. I 
am informed that many attend them, that there are 
good liopes, great reformations, and strong convictions. 
Who knows what God may do by them ? Blessed be 
the name of my God. On one of these occasions, a 
person who engaged in prayer, thus expressed himself : 
That he could travel no where abroad, but he could 
hear of some good done by me." To use his own words, 
he said, " God had helped me to shoot such darts as 
here and there had pierced to the heart, and fastened 
there for the conviction and humiliation of sinners. 
Let God have the glory, for nothing is due to me ; yet 
God forbid, I should obscure or deny what my dear 
Lord hath done in me and by me : Rom. xv. 17 — 19." 
"Sept. 8th, 1676. I went to John Butterworth's, at 
Warley, to keep a private fast with the young converts 
in that neighbourhood, and it was a delightful day ; all 
who prayed, far exceeded my expectation. T. Bentley, 
J. Waddington, M. Stead, (a blind man,) and J. Simp- 
son engaged in j^rayer. I was melted to many tears 
during the prayers of the first and last. I concluded 
with the expression of much thankfulness to see such 
forwardness ; and O, how was my heart enlarged ! 
There were above sixty persons present, and much ex- 
citement of feeling. When I first went to that place, 
not four years ago, there was only one praying family 
in that township, John Wilkinson's, and when he 
prayed, the people gathered about his house, mocked 
and abused him, and called him a wizzard. When he 
died, he desired I would preach his funeral sermon, 
on John xiv. 2 ; which I did, at John Butterworth's, 
and have still continued preaching here, which hath 
had this effect. Blessed be God." Many similar in- 


stances are recorded by liim. In the year 1682, he 
heard of forty different individuals v/ho had been bene- 
fitted by his ministry. " Aug. 11th, 1694," he thus 
expresses himself, " T perceive there is more good done 
by my ministry than I was aware of, and, it may be, 
more than I shall know of whilst I live ; for I fre- 
quently hear of some or other wrought upon by my 
poor labours. Blessed be God ;" and he mentions se- 
veral individuals who had expressed their thankfulness 
to God, that numbers, that thousands had been convert- 
ed by his instrumentality, adding, " Soli Deo gloria." 

Mr. Heywood's successful labours were continued to 
the end of his days, for when prevented travelling 
abroad, he was industriously employed in writing let- 
ters or treatises for his friends, or composing for the 
press. When drawing near to the close of life, he 
thus wrote to a friend : " I have now been above fifty 
years labouring in the Lord's vineyard, studying, pray- 
ing, and preaching both at home and abroad, wherever 
the providence of God called me. I have reached 
nearly two years beyond the age of man, and am, as 
may be supposed, incapacitated for travelling. A very 
sore asthma, or difficulty of breathing, adds consider- 
ably to the weight of my other infirmities, so that I 
am mostly confined to my own house, and can only 
study, preach in my chapel, and exercise myself in writ- 
ing books and sermons for those that desire them." 
Thus as a true and faithful soldier, he fought a good 
fight, and death found him employing spiritual wea- 
pons against the principalities and powers of darkness. 
Having finished his work, he had nothing to do but 
follow the messenger sent to conduct him to the pre- 
sence of his Lord. When engaged in a tedious and 
painful conflict with spiritual adversaries, he had often 
been animated by the encouraging language of the 


Captain of salvation : " To him that overcometh will 
I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also 
overcame and am set down with my Father in his 
throne." He has long since exchanged a state of suf- 
fering for that of rest, the sword of combat for the 
palm of victory, and the reproach of the world for a 
crown of righteousness. Be it our concern to follow 
those who, through faith and patience, inherit the 
promises ; and let it be our fervent prayer, that a suc- 
cession of holy and useful ministers may be raised up 
and zealously employed, till all the purposes of divine 
mercy are accomplished on earth, and till, on the day 
of the manifestation of the sons of God, the Voice of 
the archangel shall rouse the sleeping dead, and ter- 
minate the mysteries of Providence. 




VOL. I. 2 E 


Additional Extracts from tlie Diary of the Reverend 
O. Hey wood, intended not only to supply further 
Evidence that he was indefatigable in his Labours, 
but also to illustrate an Observation made at page 
190 in this Volume. 

May 16th. — In the morning, by sun-rising, I left my own 
house and went to Allerton to see my friends there ; then vi- 
sited Mr. Bentley, at Bingley, whose condition is worse tlian 
mine ; for he is in the same house with persons with whom he 
cannot comfortably serve God, nor hath he the free exercise of 
liis religion, which makes him desire and wish for some house 
of his own. Thence I went to Menstone, and was all niglit 
with Colonel Charles Fairfax, where I was very kindly enter- 
tained ; thence I went on Friday to Bramhope, and spent tlie 
sabbath very agreeably with Mr. Dinely, and to old Mr. Haw- 
den's, of llawden, at night, where I had a large auditory ; 
there I stayed all night, and met with very m.uch refreslnnent. 
The day after, being Monday, May 20th, I went to Bramley, 
and^was all night with Elias Hinchball, where speedily there 
was got together a great number from Leeds and other parts, 
and I preached to them till almost midnight, when the Lord in 
mercy assisted. May 24th, Thursday, I went to Wakefield, 
where, in the afternoon, I preached at my lodging, wliich v/as 
the house of Mrs. Elizabeth lliddlesden : on Saturday, we kept 
a fast at Mr. Kei-by's house, there the Lord graciously helped 
me in preaching and prayer ; on the same day, I rode to 
Penistone, where I spent the Lord's day, May 2Tth, in public * 
without disturbance ; there was a numerous congregation from 
all parts, and I had great liberty in preaching and prayer, but 
not such meltings of heart as sometimes I have felt, nor can I 
be so affected with the state of sovds, nor do that good which my 

* Not in a private house, but in a Cliapel or consecrated place of worsuip. 



heart desires. On Monday, I came from Penistoiie to Alver- 
thorp, near AVakefield, and preached about six o'clock at tlie 
house of one Thomas Holdsworth, and stayed all night witli 
my sons (who were come to meet me) at the house of John 
Kirks : on Thursday, I brought my sons within two miles of 
my own house, and then turned to visit my good friend Mr. 
Thorp, at Hopton-Hall, from whence we went to visit friends 
on the Wednesday, and on the Thursday I preached to a few 
there, and then proceeded to Robert Binns's liouse, to visit my 
friends about Siaithwaite, where I am wont to have exercises 
every year ; but now they are fallen and all things changed. 

June 4th, IVIonday night, I went to visit my good friend, James 
Sagar, (a very worthy aged Christian,) who being sick, had sent 
for me ; I found him ve,ry weak, prayed with him that night, 
and in the morning, and through mercy he was much better 
when I left him ; on the approach of night I came homewards, 
visited iVlr. Nesce and several others in my return, and came 

June 16th. — Saturday night, on earnest solicitation, I went 
to Eramley in the night, about seven miles, God mercifully 
preserved me ; I preacl:ed three times on the Lord's day, and 
was much refreslied ; the hearts of the people were much af- 
fected. I hope some good was done. Having visited friends 
by the way, on Monday night, June 18, I returned home with 

Dec. 3. — I went to IVIr. John Sharp's of Little Horton, 
vvliere Mr. Sharp, having appointed a meeting with an intention 
to preach, they put me upon that work in his room ; on Tues- 
day night I preaclied at Mr. Rawden's at Rawden ; on Wed- 
nesday night at Jcseph Kitchin's house at Farsley, where I 
had a good auditory ; on the Thursday night at Leeds, and on 
the Fridav travelled to AVakefield. At night I lodged with 
jvlr. Clayton of Okenshaw ; on the Saturday, (according to 
promise) I went to Sir Edward Rhodes's house at Houghton, 
and spent tlie Sabbath there with much comfort; on the Mon- 
day went to York, and stayed there till Tuesday, visited 
friends, and went to Mr. Vincent's house at the Grange ; on 
Thursday I went to Swath-hall and lodged there that night ; 
on Friday visited friends and lodged at Nathaniel Bottomley's, 
where I preached — the Lord graciously assisting ; on Saturday 
I went to l*enistone, and preached there on the Lord's day — it 
was a precious day to my soul. 

Jan. 31, which was Thursday. — I began to take another 


joiu-ney, (according to promise) and that night Mr. Sharp and 
I united in preaching to a considerable number at William Hodg- 
son's in Bowling, near Bradford; on Friday I visited friends, 
and lodged at Mr. Sales's at Fudsey ; on Saturday went to 
Bramley, where I preached three times on the Lord's day, and 
enjoyed a sweet distinguishing ordinance ; on Monday night- 1 
preached at S. Ellison's, near Bramley ; on Tuesday I went to 
Leeds, visited some friends, baptized some children, but could 
not preach that night on account of extremely acute head-ache, 
but being better on Wednesday morning I preached ; then 
visited W. Whitley who was very sick, with whom I had inte- 
resting discourse, and that day travelled to Bramhope, where 
first I prayed with Mr. W. Dinely who was near to death of a 
consumption ; afterwards I preached to the family and some 
others that came to hear me, and preached again in the morn- 
ing ; at night came to Mr. Rawden's of Rawden, where I 
preached ; on Friday, being Feb. 8. I called on my good friend 
Mr. Waterhouse, supped with him, and in the evening returned 
in safety to my own house, and found all well : blessed be God. 

April 29th, Leaving home, I went towards Lancashire, 
and lodged at Matthew Hollis's house at Rochdale, where I 
preached ; on the Tuesday, to Manchester, and lodged at Mr. 
Hutton's. That night it is their foolish custom after twelve 
o'clock to rise and ramble abroad, make garlands, strew flowers, 
&c. which they call Brbigkig in May ; I could sleep little 
that night, by reason of the tumult ; the day after being May 
the 1st, I went to Denton. 

Aug. 23rd, Friday. — I went from home with my wife, 
and that day preached at AVilliam Hodgson's, in Bowling, to 
a considerable auditory, and lodged at night with Mr. Sijarp, 
at Little Horton. On Saturday, I preached at Josei^h Kit- 
chen's, Farsley, and that night rode to Bramhope, where I spent 
the Lord's day following, and had a large assembly in Mr. 
Dinely's hall ; there God made me of some use in that family. 
On Monday, I went to William Thompson's at Headingley, 
and there preached at night ; the day after to Leeds, and 
preached at even in Samuel Boys' house, and lodged at Mr. 
Spencer's, in Meadow Lane. ()n Wednesday morning, I 
preached at Mr. Spencer's new house in Hunslet Lane, where 
I had a great assembly, and God graciously appeared, afford- 
ing abundant assistance and protection. I dined with Joseph 
Jackson, and afterwards walked into the town to visit friends ; 
that night I went to Bramley, and in the night preached at 
Ellis Bury's house ; the day after I visited friends in Bramley, 
Pudsey, and Farsley, and came at night to Rawden, and 


jn-eaclied there tliat evcni-ng according to appointment in old 
Mr. ilawden's house ; the day after, I visited JVlr. AVaterhouse 
in my return home winch I reached, August 30th, having 
been just a week abroad, and having preached nine times in 
those seven days. Blessed be God for work, help and hopes 
of a reward in due time. Sept. 5th. — Thursday, I went to 
Bingley, I visited some as I went, and lodged at Marlcy-hall, 
where I preached that night ; the first meeting in private, I 
suppose they have had in that parish ; the Lord graciously as- 
sisted and brought together a considerable number, who were 
much afiected. V\^ho knows but some good may be done .'' The 
day after, I visited my good friend Mr. Bentley, who lives in that 
parish, or rather is buried there, being much out of the road 
and out of public employment; I dined with him, and came after- 
wards to visit Mr. Furnace at Ovenden, and so home that night. 
Nov. 26fch, — Two eminent servants of God are dead, Mr. 
Hawksworth, minister formerly at liunslet, buried there yester- 
day, and Mr. Smallwood,* formerly minister of Batley, buried 
this day — the former died at Aiverthorp-hall, on Saturday 
afternoon, Nov. 23 ; the latter, aged sixty, at Flanshaw, Nov. 
24th, being the Lord's day in the afternoon, not a quarter of a 
mile distance, and not a day between their deaths. The Lord 
sanctify these awful breaches and presages of wrath. 


Feb. 8th. — According to a call and promise, my wife and I 
rode to Idle, in Calveriey parish, where (the place being vacant) 
I preached the day after, being the Lord''s day, and had a very 
numerovis congregation — the Lord graciously assisted and pre- 
served me in safety ; on Monday I went to Rawden and 
preached there that night ; on the Tuesday to Bradford, visited 
Mr. Erooksbank, and lodged with Mr. Waterhouse ; the day 
after called at Mr. Sharp's, where was appointed a meeting that 
day, but it was put off by business, we then came home that 
night, and found all well, blessed be God. On Friday, Feb. 
14th, — I went again to Little liorton, and Mr. Waterhouse, 
]\Ir. Dawson, Mr. Sharp, and I kept the day upon a solemn 
occasion, and oh liow my heart was enlarged in tlie duty ! 

Feb. 28th. — Being Saturday, I went to Penistone, where I 

* Mr. Smalhvood ^\^as born in Cliesliire. He was some time chaplain to 
liord Fairfax, and afterwards to Lamhert in the army. He was turned out of 
Batley, a sequestered living, in KJCO. and preached in Idle chapel till 1C62. 
He was a man of a noble, valiant, active spirit. His great delight and excel- 
lency lay in preac'aing for the conviction and av/akening of sinners, in wliich 
(iod wonderfully pros]H".-ed him. He whs a moderate Congregationalist, ready 
to act iu concert with his brethren. — Noncon. Mem, vol. in. page 438. 

3 I' 

iff t<8^Sx<j -h BtaS 

«^ > i^^ ^ SU« i^^X 

>^' fe^/K-iif 

SarJ&prr -f/* 


preached next day, but through indisposition of body, I was 
something dull, though treating upon the subject of lukewarm- 
ness, yet God helped in prayer ; at night I went to Cawthorne, 
and lodged with William Roebuck. On Monday, I travelled 
to visit old Mr. Spawford, at Mr. Cotton's house, and that day 
came to Wakefield, preached in the evening at Mrs. Kerby's, 
and lodged at Christopher Wilson's. On Tuesday I went to 
Leeds, visited my Lady Hoyle in the way, lodged and preaclied 
at Robert Hickson's ; on Wednesday, visited one Stephen 
Blagbrough, who was sick and sore afflicted in conscience, and 
that night I returned home. 

May 31th. — Lord's day, I preached in my house, and had a 
large auditory ; on Tuesday Mr. Sales, Mr. Hawden, Mr. Daw- 
son, and I, kept a private fast with and for Elizabeth Sagar, at 
Allerton, who is under desertion, temptation, and sorely pressed 
with melancholy, God in mercy assisted; on Wednesday, I 
preached my lecture at home ; it was a good day. On Friday, 
June 5th, — we were five ministers and several Christians en- 
gaged in exercises of solemn thankfulness for Mr. Sharp's re- 
covery at Little Horton. O how my heart was melted in that 
duty ! blessed be my good God. 

July 12th. — Lord's day, I preached at home, and the next 
after that, and had great multitudes to hear me. The week fol- 
lowing, on Monday night, my dear brother Nathaniel came 
to visit us, having preached in public at Bramley, on the Lord's 
day ; he preached with us on Tuesday, and on Wednesday I 
brought him homewards. 

Aug. 30th. — Being the Sabbath, I preached all day at Idle 
chapel, whither God brought a mighty congregation, affections 
were moved, and it may be, some good is done, blessed be God 
for that day ; I went from home in the morning, and came 
home at night. 

Aug. 1st. — Sabbath day, I went to Idle, and preached, 
where God graciously helped ; there was a fair field in which 
to reap, and a great assembly, with some excitement of feeling ; 
who knows what the effect may prove ? 

Jan. 8th. — I went to Honley, and next day being tlic Sab- 
bath, preached there, went to Hulme at night and preached at 
Mr. Earnshaw's on the Monday, and on Tuesday came home, 
found all well ; blessed be God. 



October 2nd. — I rode to Stubbings, and preached at S. Hop- 
kinson"'s; God wonderfully melted my heart in prayer, and as- 
sisted me in preaching from these words : " Let us consider 
one another, to provoke unto love and to good works."" 

3rd. — We had our solemn day of humiliation at my house. 
God was pleased to assist me wonderfully in praying and preach- 
ing ; it was a precious season. 

4th. — ^Vas assisted in study, though much interrupted. 
My wife and I resolved to spend some time in prayer together 
• — distracted by company. 

5th. — God wonderfully enlarged my heart in prayer, preach- 
ing, and administering the Lord's supper. Blessed be his holy 

6th. — Visited the family of J. Baxter, and was comforted in 
prayer. Studied the rest of the day. 

7tli. — My wife and I rode to Mr. Sharp's at Little Horton, 
where we kept a day of thanksgiving for family deliverances. 
It was a good season, though my heart was not so much affected 
as I have experienced on the like occasion. Lord, shew me 
the cause. 

8th. — My son Eliezer and I rode to Mr. Cotton's, at Den- 
by, where God mercifully assisted us in the acts of worship, in 
which we were both engaged. 

9th. — Mr. Hancock and I preached at Mr. Cotton's. He 
on these words, " Giving thanks to the Father, who hath made 
us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light ;" 
and I on the following : " But this I say, brethren, that the 
time is short." God graciously comforted my heart in the 
work of the day. 

10th. — Visited some other friends ; set out after dinner, 
called on Mr. Thorp, rode home, and was mercifully delivered 
from the dangers of the waters by the way. Blessed be God. 

12th. — AVas graciously assisted in all the public services of 
the day, and filled with comfort. Blessed be the name of the 
Lord for ever. 

18th. — Attended the funeral of Robert Ramsden, of Halifax, 
calka on Dr. Hook, and visited other friends. 

14th. — Rode to Dam-head, where God wonderfully melted 
my heart in prayer, and in preaching to a full assem.bly from 
these words : " Now, therefore, thus saith the Lord of hosts, 
Consider your ways." The Lord gave hopes of good, by stir- 
ring up the affections of those who were present. 

15th. — Was mercifully assisted in making preparations for 


the work of the ensuing day. My heart was quickened in of- 
fering praise and thanksgivings to God for his unnumbered 

16th. — We had a day of thanksgiving for public and family 
mercies. Mr. Dawson was employed in offering up our praises 
to the Lord ; after which I was engaged in the same delightful 
work, and in preaching. 

17th. — We had a solemn day of fasting and prayer at J. 
Kershaw's. O what a heart-melting season was this to us ! I 
hope God will hear and answer prayer. 

18th. — In study and prayer was much enlarged : it was a 
good day. Glory be to the name of my merciful Father. 
^ 19th. — We had a numerous assembly. I would be thankful 
for some measure of comfort, though I did not experience such 
meltings in prayer as at some times. 

20th. — I travelled to Great Gomersal, kept a solemn fast 
with Mr. Dawson, Mr. Holdsworth, * and many more. The 
Lord sweetly melted my heart in prayer and preaching. 

21st. — Took a journey towards Craven, visited J. Forster's 
family, and preached at Thos. Leech's to a considerable com- 
pany- In the evening, the Lord assisted Thomas Leech, M. 
Broadley, and myself in praying for the nation. 

22nd. — Preached at J. Key's to a full assembly. The Lord 
wonderfully blessed us in prayer ; many tears were shed, and 
the people were so much affected that at some times my voice 
was scarcely heard. I have seldom known the like before ! 
Surely it is a favourable token. 

24th. — Came with some friends to J. Baldwin's, where some 
time was spent in useful discourse. Returning home at night, 
I saw great reason to bless God for this sweet journey. 

25th — Endeavoured to study, but my heart was cold, dead, 
and distracted. The Lord pardon me. 

26th. — This was a day of mercy. The Lord helped me in 
praying and preaching amongst a multitude of people. My 
text was, " He also shall be my salvation." 

27th. — We kept a solemn fast at Alice Holt's. O what a 
day was this ! What meltings of heart and shedding of tears 
before the Lord ! Mr. Dawson, Mr. Priestley, Mr. l^radshaw, 
and myself were employed in prayer. Blessed be my God for 
such seasons as these ! 

• He was chaplain to Sir Rich. Houghton, of Hougliton Tower, in I>Hn- 
cashire, after his ejectment from the University of Cambridge. In UJ72, he 
preached pnbUcly at Heckmondwike, in Yorkshire, and continued to labour 
there till his death in 1685, when not quite iifty years of aye. His memory is 
still revered as a useful minister of Christ. 


29th. — We had a solemn fast at Mr. Dawson's on account of 
the nation. My heart was sweetly enlarged. 

SOth. — Preached at Sowerby on Heb. x. 24. Alas ! I see 
many defects in what I do, and great cause for humiliation ; 
yet the Lord stands by me to help me in time of need. 

31st. — Was much refreshed in closet prayer, but afterwards 
lost much time in seeking some sermons which I could not find. 
The Lord pardon me. Afterwards visited J. Langley, discours- 
ed, and prayed with him. 

November 1st. — The Lord graciously led my thoughts to a 
text, after I had been much agitated about the choice of one. 
My heart was then quieted, and I was helped in studying. 

2nd. — Preached on these words, " Thy will be done." I was 
much helped and comforted. 

4th. — Studied in the morning, and in the afternoon Mr. 
Dawson and I rode to Morley, and lodged at Mr. John Brooks- 
bank's. We had the next day a double lecture at the meeting- 
house, Morley, where there was a large assembly. Mr. Daw- 
son's text was, " There is none like the God of Jeshiu-un ;" 
mine, " Let us consider one another, to provoke unto love and 
good works." For assistance afforded to us both, we have great 
reason to be thankful. 

6th. — We had a meeting preparatory to the ordinance of the 
Lord's supper at Morley ; after which I went to Leeds, lodged 
at Mr. Hick's 

7th. — Visited several friends at Leeds, discoursed with them 
about the concerns of their souls, and joined with them in 

8th. — Dined with Dr. Whitaker, and discoursed about some 
unhappy differences among good people. 

9tli. — Rode to Alverthorp, where I was much assisted in 
prayer and preaching. On my return home, I found all well 
after this long absence. Blessed be the name of the Lord. 

11th. — Preached at John Butterworth's of Warley, where 
God brought many people to hear me, and gave my soul sweet 
enlargement in speaking to them, and praying with them. 

12th. — We had a day of fasting and prayer at James Tet- 
ley's. God graciously helped me in the work, especially in 
praying for the nation. 

Went to Little Lever, the place of my nativity, and 

preached there to a full assembly of my relations, old neigh- 
bours, and friends ; God was graciously with us. 

At Cockey chapel I was mercifully assisted in preach- 
ing to a large audience of serious people ; and afterwards at the 
house of my relation, Air. Peter Ileywood. Returning to 

EXTRACTS. , 379 

llochdalc, God gave us a merciful opportunity in worshipping 
him at llobt. Milan's. 

Travelling towards Wakefield I visited John Burhcad, 

Josiah Gates, and other christian brethren, and lodged at Mr. 
Jenkinson's, Horbury. The next day, after preaching at Al- 
verthorp, rode towards York. In that city, I waited on Lord 
Clifford and Lord Fairfax, lodging at night with Sir John 
Hewley. Preached at Lady Watson's and spent the evening 
at Lady Hewet's. God dealt graciously with me. The next 
day I visited many friends, and dined at Sir John Hewley's, 
with Lord Clifford, Sir Gilbert Gerherd, Sir John Brook, and 
others. The morning after I was called upon to preach in 
Lady Hewley's room. God mercifully assisted me and gave 
me freedom. His mercies are infinite ! 


Jan. 2nd, Lord's day.-^ — Was sweetly comforted in praying 
and preaching. I attempted to describe the fruits which the 
Lord expects from his vineyard ; and, blessed be his name, he 
was pleased to make it a good day. 

1 2th. — Mr. Dawson, several others, and I, kept a day of so- 
lemn humiliation, at the house of J. K. in Wyke. God sweetly 
melted my heart, and helped me in preaching from Psalm Ivi. 8, 
" Thou tellest my wanderings ; put thou my tears into thy 
bottle ; are they not in thy book ?'''' 

I'ith. — Rode to Bingley, preached at Josh. Walker's at 
Rushwortli-hall, on Psalm cxix. 158, " I beheld the transgres- 
sors and was grieved, because they kept not thy Avord." A 
full assembly. Had good assistance. In the evening several 
brethren prayed : it was a good season. 

14th. — Called on Mrs. Ferrand, of Bingley, discoursed and 
prayed with her. Conversed with another at Cottingley under 
trouble of mind. Called on Mr. Joseph Lister, and returned 
home in safety, though it was a very stormy day. 

16th. — We had a day of fasting and prayer at my house, on 
account of M. 11. My heart was sweetly melted while Mr. 
Dawson was employed. 

17th. — Studied closely, and was much assisted, but not so 
comfortable in prayer with my wife and servant, as at other 

18th. — Preached at Kipping, and was graciously helped 
through the day's work. 

19th. — Attended the funeral of that gracious young woman, 
Grace Bastow, at Halifax. j\[r. Hook preached. 

22nd. — Went to Sower by, and preached at S tubbings ; my 


God graciously assisting me ; blessed be his holy name ; it was 
a good day. 

25th, Lord's day. — We assembled for divine worship at W. 
Clay's, and were exceedingly thronged, yet God was with us of 
a truth. 

2Cth. — We had a day of fasting and prayer at A^^ Clay's, 
on account of the gloomy aspect of public affairs. There were 
many present, and what a heart-melting day was it unto us ! 

28th. — Rode to Captain Hodgson's, where we had a day of 
fasting and prayer. God wonderfully assisted those who were 
employed in wrestling with him in behalf of the nation. 

30th. — Was greatly assisted in my studies, though somewhat 
interrupted by company. That pious Christian, ]\Ir. Joseph 
Lister, paid us a visit. 

My Lord Rutherford did me the honour to call upon 

me. We spent most of the afternoon together, I hope, to 
mutual edification. I returned to my chamber in the evening, 
where it pleased God to afford me his gracious help in my studies. 

Lord's day, I preached at Alverthorpe, and was merci- 
fully assisted in every part of the work. 

Friday, we had a solemn day of fasting and prayer, pre- 
paratory to the Lord's supper. It pleased the Almighty to 
favour us with tokens of his gracious presence ; my own heart 
was deeply affected in prayer and preaching. 

jNIonday, much interrupted in my studies by visitors. 

Have to complain of dullness and stupidity of mind. Lord, pity 
and pardon me. 

Tuesday, spent about six hours in secret prayer and 

meditation, and am unable to express what I then experienced. 
O what a season of humiliation and comfort was it to my poor 
soul ! Blessed be the holy name of my gracious God for ever. 

We had a private fast at James Halstead's, which was 

to us a time of spiritual refreshment from the presence of the 
Lord. ]\Iy heart was deeply affected while Mr. Joseph Lister, 
of Kipping, prayed. 

Thursday, I preached to a large assembly at Sam. Hop- 

kinson's, from these words, " Ahnost thou persuadest me to be a 
Christian. " T trust, God was with us of a truth, and that some 
good was done among us. 

Preached to a full assembly at Mr. Leech's, Bingley, 

from the precious declaration of our Redeemer, " Him that 
cometh unto me, I will in no wise cast out." It was a refresh- 
ing season to myself, and, I hope, to many others. 

We had a large assembly at JMr. John Butterworth's, 

Warlcy, where I spent about foiu- hours in prayer and preach- 

EXTllACTS. 381 

ing, with great pleasure and enlargement of heart ; blessed be 
the Father of mercies. The words dwelt upon were, " Which 
of you intending to build a city, or a tower, sitteth not down 
first, and counteth the cost 'f It was a merciful season indeed. 

Lord's day was a sweet day to my soul. It pleased God 

to melt my heart exceedingly in pleading with him in behalf 
of the nation. 

Preached at Warley to a very large assembly, many of 

whom seemed to be deeply affected. O that I may be thankful 
for the mercies poured upon us at that happy season ! 

Monday afternoon, we spent six hours in prayer. Seven 

young men were called to the exercise, and were much assisted. 


June 28th. — Having performed my closet exercises, and spent 
some time in studying, preparatory to my journey, I set my 
family in order and committed them to God in prayer. After 
dinner I set forward for Lancashire, and as I rode over Black- 
stone Edge I propounded four subjects for meditation ; but 
could only go over the two former — What God hath done for 
me since I first came that road ? — What requital I had made F 
— What God calls for me to do ? — What he calls me to suffer, 
and how ? God graciously helped me. I lodged at R. Milne''s, 
at Rochdale. 

29th. — Rose early and God affected my heart very sensibly 
in secret prayer. O what a melting season it was ! In the 
forenoon I gathered Lady Hewit's rents. Dined at R. M's, 
and after four o"'clock set out towards Manchester. Here I 
found brother Wilson indisposed, and was helped to pray 
for him. 

30th. — God enlarged my heart in prayer, and graciously as- 
sisted me. Visited Mr. Tilsley, went to ISIr. Newcomers and re- 
ceived the Lord''s supper at his hands, when God gave pledges 
of his love : blessed be his name. In the afternoon, rode to 
Blakeley, and preached to a full company at widow Traverses 
house. Came back to Manchester ; blessed be my good God. 

July 1st. — In the morning, rose at four o'clock, and after read- 
ing four chapters, prayed, and went with sister Hilton to Mr. 
Barlow's, and preached to a considerable company on Micah v. 5. 
God deeply aflected my heart in prayer for the church, having 
heard bad news. I visited some, and then travelled. C ailed 
on ]\Ir. Sargeant at Stand, brother Colburn's at Radcliffe 
Bridge, and lodged at T. Woofman's at Darcey Lever. Blessed 
be God. 


2nd. — I was lielped in prayer, went to Cockcy chapel and 
preached on 2 Tim. iii. 5. God graciously enlarged my heart 
in his work. Dined at I^awrence Lomax's and at night went to 
brother Colburn's, where God assisted me in repeating my ser- 
mon and praying with a great number of persons. 

3rd. — Early in the morning, God helped in prayer in my 
chamber, and in the family. Then I set forwards to liolton, 
called at my father's house in Little Lever, and arrived at 
Eolton at twelve o'clock. Heard Mr. Boardman preach in the 
cliurch. Visited Mr. Lever, my dear child in Christ. Alice 
('rompton came to me in bitterness of soul, on whom God had 
wrought by my ministry ; I discoursed and prayed with her. 
Lodged at brother Okey's ; blessed be my good God. 

4th. — In my chamber this morning I met with more than 
ordinary incomes of grace, and out-goings of heart to God. 
Then I had some conversation with Mr. Lever. Afterwards 
came to Darcey Lever, and preached a funeral sermon at Thos. 
Woofman's, for a daughter of cousin Alice Greenhalgh on 
Micah vi. 7. God graciously helped. At night I repeated it 
to a full company. Despatched other business, and lodged 
there safely. 

5th. — God helped me betimes in prayer and reading my 
chapters. Spent the forenoon with my sister Esther. Towards 
eleven o'clock rode to Breightmet and preached a funeral sermon 
for Ann Scolcroft on Rev. xxii. 14. God graciously assisted. 
Lodged at Cousin Crompton's, Crompton Fold. 

6th. — Was helped to pray and bless my God for many mer- 
cies, especially for my dear wife who was born in this house. 
After family prayer, I rode to Little Lever, discoursed and 
prayed with my sister's daughter, who is' married and going to 
live in my father's house to whom it belongs. Discoursed with 
D. Holt, in Bury, and came to Rochdale at six o'clock. 
Preached at a friend's house, and lodged at R. Milne's. 

7th. — God helped me in my chamber earnestly to plead with 
him, and to bless him for my journey so far and the mercies 
thereof. Then we had prayer, breakfast, and conversation. 
Set forward on my journey, in which God protected. Called at 
Josiah Stonefield's, and arrived at home by six o'clock. Had a 
large and sweet letter from my son Eliezer. Blessed be God 
for returns of prayer. 

Sept. 25th. — Set forward for Lancashire, accompanied by 
my wife. Called at Littleborough, and lodged at Rochdale, 
with P. Ogden. 

26th. — In the morning was helped in prayer with my wife. 


We visited friends, dined, and rode to Manchester. God gra- 
ciously preserved us and brought us safely to brother Hilton's, 
where we found mercy. Blessed be God. 

27th.— In the morning I was assisted in prayer. Visited 
friends in the forenoon. After dinner walked out, and at six 
o'clock preached at Martha Taylor's, on Frov. iv. 23. God 
in mercy gave assistance, and Ave had a full company. 

28th. — In the forenoon, visited Mr. Hooper, &c. After din- 
ner rode to Booth-hall, near Blakeley, and preached on Cant. 
V. 3. God helped me. I returned and repeated my sermon 
at brother Hilton's. Blessed be God. 

29th. — In the morning my wife and I took our journey to 
J. Leach's, at Newton, where I preached to a good company. 
Dined and came back to Manchester. Visited Mr. Scolfield, 
and then preached at Mr. Barlow's from seven o'clock till nine, 
on Isa. xl. 31. God appeared for me: blessed be his name. 

30th. — In the morning we committed our concerns to God, 
and visited friends in Manchester. After dinner my wife and 
I set out for Cockey-Moor. Met with a drunken man in Stand- 
Lane, who threatened us ; but God in mercy protected us. We 
came to Ratcliffe Bridge and lodged at Lawrence Lomax's. 

Oct. 1st. — Preached at Cockey chapel all day, on Gal. i. 4. 
God helped me in prayer and preaching. There was a very 
numerous assembly. Met covisin N. Heywood and his mother. 
Found mercy all day. Repeated at night at Lawrence Lomax's 
to a house full of people, and lodged there. Blessed, blessed be 
my God. 

2nd. — God graciously helped me in the morning to plead 
for the church, and made it a good day. I went to Bolton and 
heard the lecture. Met with cousin Bradshaw, discoursed with 
him about my sons, and had encouragement. Conversed and 
prayed with E. Crompton. At night repeated to a house full 
at brother Okey's, where we lodged. 

3rd. — In the morning God assisted. Then got ready, and 
after family prayer, departed. Called on my sister Esther, dis- 
coursed and prayed with her and sister Heywood. Rode to 
my father's house, where James Lomax now lives. Preached 
to a full assembly on Zeph. ii. 3. God afterwards helped in 
despatching business. Received rents and returned to Bolton. 

4th. — After prayer and breakfast we took leave, and set out 
on our journey. Called and dined at cousin J. Crompton's, at 
Breightmet. Set forward and called on Mrs. Gregg, Bridge- 
hall. Came to Mrs. Hallow's, near Rochdale ; lodged there and 
much mercy. Blessed be God. 

5th. — In the morning God graciously met my heart in prayer 


witli my wife. After family worship set myself to spend some 
time in secret prayer before dinner. O what a melting season 
it was ! Blessed be my God. After dinner rode to Mr. 
Ogden's, and preached there at night to a full company, on Prov. 
vi. 23. God wonderfully helped. We lodged there. 

6th. — After closet and family dvities, I and my wife came 
forwards. God preserved in and from danger. We called at 
Miss Stead's. Came home and found all well.^ Blessed be 
God. Several friends came to welcome us home. 

The Warrant, by mrtue whereof Mr. Hardcastle* was taken 
at Shadwell, ivith twenty-four more, he for preaching, they 
for hearing. 

To all Bailiffs, Constables, and other his Majesty's Of- 
ficers, especially to John Aneyard, and Matthew Wilkinson. 

Com. Ebor. \ Whereas we are credibly informed that divers 
West Rid. j Sectarians and other disloyal persons, do often- 
times in great numbers, to the terror of the king's liege people, 
riotously, seditiously, and impudently meet in divers places, 
within the said Riding at unlawful assemblies and conventicles, 
under colour and pretence of exercise of religion, in other man- 
ner than is allowed by the liturgy and practice of the Church 
of England ; which meetings they are the more encouraged to 
hold, by the wilful neglect and carelessness of the constables, 
aud other officers in the said Riding to suppress the same, in 
which conventicles under colour of preaching, divers schismati- 
cal and nonconformist clerks, and other dangerous and disloyal 
persons do traduce and revile the king, and the church afore- 
said, and endeavour by such means to disaff'ect the people to 
the government, and as far as in them lies consequently to dis- 
turb the king's peace, and turmoil the nation in new combus- 
tions and confusions, which said conventicles are notorious, and 
in those parts in contempt of the government are notoriously 

held. These are therefore in his Majesty's name to will and 

require you and every of you, taking with you such assistants 
as you shall think fit from time to time, to prohibit and dis- 
charge the said conventicles, and unlawful assemblies, and at 
all times to apprehend and seize the persons in the said meet- 
ings, and to carry them before two of his Majesty's Justices of 

• See pages 114 and 2r)3, 


tlie peace for the said Hiding, to be prosecuted against accord- 
ing to law, and hereof fail not at your peril. 

Given under our hands and seals the 22nd of May, in the 
17th year of his Majesty's reign. 



Many of Mr. Heywood's Soliloquies were composed on various 
events of his life, and are so interwoven with his history that 
they have necessarily been inserted in tlie preceding memoirs. 
Others relate more generally to his religious experience, and 
may be read with interest by Christians as descriptive of those 
spiritual feelings common to all the regenerated family of God. 
" As in water face answereth to face, so the heart of man to 
man.'" The relation and comparison of religious experience 
have often proved an effectual means of encouraging weak be- 
lievers, instructing young converts, and promoting the general 
welfare of souls. The spiritual experience of David as recorded 
in the book of Psalms, has been of incalculable benefit to the 
church of God in every succeeding age, and many who are now 
on their pilgrimage to the heavenly Jerusalem are thankful for 
what the inspired Psalmist has declared of the " things God 
had done for his soul." One end of christian biography, and 
that t-jo not the least important, is, that the present and future 
race of spiritual combatants may become acquainted with the 
conflicts of those who are now inheriting the promises, and with 
the means by which they " camie off more than conquerors.*" 
The following extracts from the remainder of Mr. HeywoocFs 
soliloquies, will therefore no doubt be acceptable to the pious 

The remarks inserted by Mr. Heywood on a blank leaf of the 
volume containing his soliloquies, will form a suitable introduc- 
tion to the extracts. " I intend to write in this book some 
private soliloquies and ejaculations, wherev/ith my soul hath been 
very much delighted under the various pressures and burdens 
which have frequently encumbered m.e, and sat heavy on my 
spirits. I have experienced this divine act of meditation and 
self-argumentation to be the most sovereign way to dispel the 

VOL. I. 2 C 


clouds of distempering tlioughts from my mind, or to remove 
my backwardness to duties, or advance my thoughts heaven- 
wards, or mortify my affections of a worldly and sinful natui'c. 
It is begun on the 10th of i\Iay, 1653;' 


Advance thyself now, O my soul, be thou thyself and act a 
spirit's part. Reflect upon, return into thyself, and see how 
things go there. Hath God given thee these rational faculties 
and a self-discoursing power, and shall not these be exercised ? 
Begin to confer with thy own heart, and thou shalt not want 
matter. Let the method be what it will, so that thou mayest 
profit thyself and gain advantage over thy spiritual foes. Look 
within thee and without thee, look below thee and above thee, 
and if there be not matter of meditation then I shall wonder. 
But surely if thou art not extremely wanting to thyself, this 
spiritual exercise will bring a return of full, new, and heart- 
refi'eshing supplies. O my soul, let me now stimulate thee to 
this course, whilst I charge thee not to be sluggish in it. Let 
not trivial matters interrupt thee, but constantly and conscien- 
tiously exercise thyself therein. 1 solemnly require thee, thou 
deceitful heart, do not here beguile me, do not plead excuses, 
do not make delays, but begin in good earnest ; it is a business 
of great concern, and I adjure and command thee by the autho- 
rity God hath given me over thee, to comply with the duty and 
come and act thy part. Loiter not in unprofitable formality or 
a vain offer, like the son that said, " I go, sir, and went not." 
I charge thee, my depraved and backward heart, in the name of 
God, and upon thy allegiance to thy dread Sovereign, to deal 
impartially with thyself, to arraign thyself at the bar of con- 
science, and to imitate, as m.uch as may be, God's calling sin- 
ners to account at the general assizes. Keep back nothing now 
which shall then be revealed. Fear not to know the worst ; 
it is better to know it Iiere by thy own voluntary discovery, 
than to have such things brought up then, as thou wouldst give 
all the world to be concealed, if it were possible ; it must be 
better to shame thyself here, where thou mayest be restored, 
than to be ashamed hereafter without remedy. O the benefit 
thou mayest get by communing with thy own heart ! Hereby 
thou mayest come to know more of its secret wanderings, wind- 
ings, and iniquitous turnings. Thou mayest take notice of thy 
progress in thy journey, of the decaying and rising of thy sen- 
sual desires, and of the revival of grace. Thou mayest know 
more of the method of Satan and the mystery of iniquity. Thy 

soliloquit:s, 587 

heart "may be blessed with suitable dispositions, as tliou seest 
occasion, to mourn when thou dost not find things well and 
wisely conducted, and to rejoice when thou liast cause. Sure I 
am, this secret soul-soliloquy will prove a gainful trade, a sweet 
delicious feast, and a solemn delightful exercise, that will exhi- 
larate thy spirits better than wine. Try this course, O my 
soul, and observe if it be not good for thee. See if thy graces 
do not increase by it, the power of thy sins diminish, and thy 
duties be better discharged. See if thou dost not enjoy more 
communion with God, and if others do not observe thy face to 
shine and thy ways to be more regular, by frequent conversing 
with God and thyself. By this means thou wilt spend thy days 
with more solace and delight, and live as in a little corner of 
heaven. Store up sweet and soul-refreshing comforts against 
an evil day. Inure thyself to exercise thy graces alone, and if 
God deprive thee of his saints, thou mayest enjoy the fellowship 
of God here, and think it no strange thing to remove to his im- 
mediate presence at death. 

Come, my soul, and let me feel which way thy pulse beats. 
Is it not heavenwards ? and shouldst tliru not be heavenly- 
minded ? See what cause thou hast to mind thy G(td and au 
eternal state. Canst thou bring to thy recollection no heart- 
raising considerations to elevate thee heavenwards ? What 
sayest thou ? Are there no vestiges of divine distinguishing 
providences left upon thee ? Are there no impressions of free 
grace experienced, fresh within thee ? Then tliou art much out 
of frame. Dost thou not find thyself lost in a labyrinth of 
God's mercies ? Dost thou not feel thyself transported by an 
angelical admiration of God's bounty and compassion, and art 
thou not plunged into the depths of self-condemning indigna- 
tion to see thy strange requitals ? O that God should do 
so much for thee, and that thou shouldst do so much against 
him ! as if thou wouldst strive with God, to see whether his 
loving-kindness or thy rebellion shall have the victory ! Who 
but a churlish Nabal would be so ungrateful a requiter ? He 
hath made thee ; doth not that deserve thy homage ? He hath 
kept thee from thy birth to the present moment ; doth not that 
require some dutiful obedience ? Ah, but thy Saviour hath 
died for thee and redeemed thee, without which thou hadst 
been lost for ever I Doth not that merit a thankful remem- 
brance ? He did not think his dearest heart's blood too dear 
for thee, and wilt thou think thy cordial thoughts too dear for 
him ? Suppose the Lord had cast thee into hell, thou wouldst 
have roared out under thy pangs, and couldyt not forget God's 

2 C 2 

388 LIFE or Tiir. t.y.y. o. iieywood. 

hand of justice ; but now the Lord hath redeemed thee, and 
bestowed on thee many privileges, why shouldst thou forget his 
strong arm of mercy ? Poor soul, hast thou any thing to mind 
but thy God ? Is there any thing worth thinking of besides 
thy treasure ? 

Tell me, O my soul, hast thou not sometimes upon the deli- 
berate comparison of transitory vanities, (gilded over with the 
fairest gloss of happiness) with the bare naked excellence of 
soul-refreshing enlargements, which thou hast sometimes enjoyed 
from God ; hast thou not, I say, preferred this latter with its 
roughness, before the former with its attractions ? Hast thou 
not infinitely preferred the pleasures of grace before the plea- 
sures of the world ? and wilt thou now return to the beggarly 
and weak elen:ients of the world ? Wilt thou now go and coun- 
teract thy ov.n persuasions by thy practices ? Nay, nay, my 
soul, exchange not gold for glass, leave not the tried substance 
for the shadow ; but come along, I'll lead thee by the hand, 
and let thee take a glance of what thou canst not fully know 
because of thy carnality. Or rather, take a full survey of out- 
ward sensible favours ; ask thy outward man, and it will tell 
thee, ask thy senses, and they will testify of multitudes of ten- 
der mercies. Propound some queries to thyself, and see what 
answer a well informed, rectified, and sanctified understanding 
will dictate upon the right discovery of thy present state. But, 
O my soul, beware of the ticklings of pride, arrogance, or vain- 
glory. Poor creature, tell me now what art thou ? A creature 
of God's making, the workmanship of the great and infinite 
God, the same God that made the holy angels and highest 
heavens ! But what creature art thou ? A man ; that is a 
mercy, God might have made thee a brute. But thou art a 
man, endowed with a living soul cajiable of felicity ; a rational 
and intelligent man ; God might have made thee a fool, an 
idiot to be scorned, derided and mocked by all ! But what sort 
of man art thou ? A Christian, one born within the pale of the 
visible church ! Thou mightest have been born among the 
rude Indians or savage Turks, and been either a gross idolater, 
to have adored the creature instead of the Creator, yea, to have 
worshipped the devil himself; or have lived in a popish coun- 
try : and what hopes can there be of salvation where means are 
wanting ? God hath brought thee up all thy days at the feet 
of Gamaliel, where light hath shone round thee as in a little 
Goshen, yea, it hath shone into thee which is best of all ! 
Thou art a Christian, not nominally only but really, I feel per- 
suaded. Here stand gazing up into heaven, not into thyself: 
it was God's own work, and is marvellous in my eyes ! But 


what kiud of Christian art thou ? Not of an inferior rank but a 
teaching Christian — a minister of the gospel. O what riches 
of grace are here ! For whom hath God dune all these observ- 
able things ? Not for a prince, nor one descended of noble blood, 
nor for a subtle politician, eminent scholar, critical linguist, 
acute philosopher, profound mathematician, or learned divine ; 
no, no, the Lord hath not bestowed these mercies on any such 
accounts ; yet God hath made choice of thee, and made use of 
thee, yea, hath accounted thee faithful to bear his message to a 
wicked world. O w^hat an infinite ocean of mercy is this ! 
"Were there not many thousands in England of more admirable 
natural abilities and acquired learning, some of whom were not 
permitted to enter upon these sacred studies, and so are inca- 
pable of being employed in the Lord's vineyard. Others are 
commissioned outwardly and qualified excellently with all ex- 
ternal endowments, yet answer net to their call ; instead of 
being faithfvd labourers they are fruitless loiterers, are wretch- 
edly profane, and the ringleaders in every scene of iniquity, 
instead of leading their people heavenwards. But I see grace 
is free, and that alone hath made the difference. Should not 
God then have all the praise ? And how canst thou express 
his praise more than in a due and diligent minding of thy God, 
waiting upon him, walking with him, and v/orking for him ? 


Raise up thyself, O my soul, and aspire in thy desires to- 
wards the highest heavens. Mount up like flames of fire with 
heat and height of zeal and love towards the chief good. What 
else can content and satisfy thee but thy God ? Will creatures 
do it ? O no. Dost thou not behold a vanity and vexatious 
quality in whatever is presented to thee? The heaven-born 
soul will overlook inferior objects, and, if it be itself, will tram- 
ple under foot whatever is under the sun. Was my seraphic 
soul created for these things below ? Can its desires be ter- 
mniated on inferior objects ? Was it shaped of the earth as 
my body, and must it return to the earth again ? No, no, it 
comes from God, and to God must return or never be content. 
The misery of hell consists in exclusion from the chief good, 
and the souls in that land of darkness can never be satisfied. 
O my soul, where art thou but as in a present hell whilst separated 
from God ? Thou art like little silly birds that wander from 
their nests, and lose themselves in woods and groves. Art 
thou not like Noah's dove that could not find a place adapted 
for a constant residence ? or like a little rivulet that is left be- 
hind the proud, tempestuous tide, that runs and slides along 

390 LIFE Ol' THE REV. (.). HEYWOOD. 

the even sands, and cannot rest till it returns again to be swal- 
lowed up in tile mighty ocean P O my soul, be not thou a 
willing prisoner, but make trial whilst thy fetters are on thee, 
to soar aloft on the wings of faith and love ; whilst on the 
stormy deep, put thyself forward towards the haven, and thou 
shalt find a happy gale of the spirit of grace to drive thee hea- 
venwards. I bid thee not, my soul, make too much haste, o\* 
seek to break open the prison door, or pull down the wall, only 
look with longing expectation from the window God hath 
opened for thee. If thou art not wanting to thyself, thou mayest 
look through, by the eye of faith, towards the new Jerusalem 
which is above ; as Daniel once did. When God sees good to 
set tlice at liberty he will come luito thee, as to Peter, and 
strike off thy bolts, and gently open the gates and let thee out. 
Till then, labour to enjoy the presence of thy God, and employ 
thyself in acts of holiness till thou art taken hence and seen 
no more. 

AVhat a wretched life do I, poor creature, lead, who am 
tormented between hope and fear, suspended betwixt heaven 
and hell, and tortiu-ed between two thieves that come to steal 
my comforts from me — my oAvn corruptions and Satan's temp- 
tations. Alas, I am almost weary of my life, my soul is giving 
up the ghost. O that I could say, " it is finished !'"' my sins 
finished, my sorrows finished, my work finished, my woe 
finished, niy life finished ; I would bid farewell to all sinful 
objects, m.y soul would be free from all coi-poreal organs, and I 
would take my leave of all carnal things, those enemies to God 
and destroyers of my desirable soul-comforts. " O that I had 
v.'ings like a dove ! for then would I fly away and be at rest," 
from all molesting cares, and hide myself from my enchanting 
enemies. JMethiuks I live as on a field of battle, where I hear 
the terrible noise of combatants, and clashing of warlike wea- 
pons. IMethinks my darling soul stands just at the mouth of a 
destructive cannon, ready to be shattered to pieces every mo- 
ment. x\h ! how often doth my soul withdraw and leave my 
God, which makes him lade his face and bend his bow to shoot 
at me as an enemy ; and though sometimes I cast down my 
arms and cry for mercy, yet I break my covenant with him and 
cast his laws behind my back. i\iy greatest enemies are within, 
and these heart-wars and soul-disscntions are my greatest woes ; 
if I were free from them, my soul would be serene and quiet. 
]\iethinks my heart is like Abraham's house, that had a Sarah 
and a Hagar in it, who could not well agree ; an Isaac and Ish- 
fiiael, who thwarted and contradicted each other. O my soul, 


liow long must thou be forced to hear tJic sound of the trumpet 
and the alarm of war ? ]Must thou always see these sworn ad- 
versaries running upon and struggling with each other ? The 
word of God doth quickly answer me, that the flesh and spirit 
will thus lust against each other, while we have bodies of flesh 
and regenerated souls united. It is so in thee, my soul, and it 
is thy happiness it is so and no worse. Thou thinkcst thou hast 
gTeat cause to complain, but thou hast also infinite cause to bless 
thy God for these heart-battles which are evidences of regene- 
ration, means of thy deeper humiliation, and occasions of the 
manifestation of God's goodness, and wisdom, and power. O 
my soul, thou art abundantly indebted to free grace for these 
tokens of undeserved love, that the strong man armed does not 
keep secure possession, that God hath infused a living principle 
within thee, to incline thee towards heaven as thy nature doth 
towards hell. O never be at rest till corruptions have received 
their final doom ; be not at truce or peace with any darling sin, 
for thou losest most ground when thou art parleying with the 
enemy ; when thou art tampering with liim, he leads thee cap- 
tive. Come, my soul, be valiant for the truth, put on the whole 
armour of God, and at last thou shalt prevail against thy foes, 
and have an everlasting triumph. 

O sad, afflicted, and agitated soul ! Art thou so enamoured 
with the world as to make thee loth to leave it ? Wliat plea- 
sure canst thou take in feuds and battles ? Is not peace better 
than war? Is it not far better to be at liome, under thy father"' !i 
safe and succouring- winffs, free from all intestine disturbanceti 
and foreign invasions, than to be travelling thy journey, 
sometimes wet and battered with wind and weather of severe 
afflictions, and at other times overcome with the sultriness of a 
prosperous condition .'* One would think, O my degenerate 
soul, there would not be so much difficulty to persuade thee 
freely to lay down this house of clay. But I feel thou art too 
carnal and corrupt, and, like an angry child, unwilling to go to 
bed. It is true thou canst not leave it but when thy time is 
come ; but shouldst thou not die daily, and be realizing death as 
if it were already at the door, as who knov.^s but it is ? Shouldst 
thou not always be prepared to die ? Shouldst thou not still 
carry thy life in thy hand, because tliou art not at thy own dis- 
posal.'* Thou art at the disposal of him who will not give thee 
an account of his proceedings ; he will not gratify thee so much 
as to let thee knov/ the length of thy days, or give thee a lease 
of thy life, lest it sliould breed pi-esiunption and nourish thy 


security. Shouldst thou not tlierefore be trimming tliy lamp, 
girding thy loins, standing on thy watch, and be ready when- 
ever it shall please God to call ? Argue thyself into a dying 
posture. ' Tis a matter of great moment to pass into eternity, 
and all a man's time from the cradle to the grave, were it 
.stretched out to the length of the antediluvian patriarchs'" lives, 
would be little enough to be employed in preparation for it. 
The happiness or misery of this precious and immortal soul 
depends upon the well or ill improvement of this inch of time. 
Well then, O my soul, if thy pilgrimage in this tabernacle of 
clay is spent in the enjoyment of God, O what a double heaven 
wilt thou have hereafter ! 

Sometimes I can remember, that through consciousness of my 
duty and sense of necessity, I have beeen drawn to my knees, 
when at the first my heart was dull, frozen, and .stupid ; but 
ere I was aware, I have been greatly enlarged, and have been 
carried away by the wings of the Spirit as in the chariot of 
Amminadib. But now v/oe is me ! I felt a strong inclination, 
(as I thought) to engage in duty, and perceived some move- 
iifients of a spirit of grace and supplication ; but I sensibly dis- 
cerned the withdrawing , of my God by being left to sad, dis- 
tracting, and disturbing thoughts. Discover to me, dear and 
gracious God, what is the cause of thy contending thus with 
me. I know it must be just, and I do first acquit thee before 
I do expostulate. Is it because I lie under the guilt of some 
fresh committed sin, or some omitted duty ? Is it because at 
other times I did not watch over my own heart, but gave too 
much sway to my extravagant affections, and freely entertained 
wandering thoughts, and now thou wilt punish one sin by ano- 
ther, and make my sin, my judgment ? O my soul, what mer- 
cies iiast thou sinned against, and what miseries art thou now 
involved in ! Had any one ever more cause to be humbled, 
and was ever any one less humbled ? Did ever mercy and 
folly meet in such degrees in any soul ? Alas, dost thou get 
any good in thus departing from thy God ? Art thou not un- 
done without him, and is there not necessity to approach him ? 
Come then, up and be doing, be resolved in the case, and trifle 
not about things of such moment. Thou must be serious about 
it, speak to thy heart and ask it, if it v/ili not practise what is 
so much for its good. If it refuse, provoke it to it ; if it draw 
back urge it on ; if it linger, like Lot in Sodom, hasten it for- 
ward, let it not stay, nor make delays, nor plead excuses. The 
longer thou dcferrest this duty the more dangei-ous is thy state. 
Fall on tljy knees this morning, see what God will give thee, 


and O do thou give thyself, thy heart, thy hand, thy head, thy 
all to God. 

O my soul, thou hast been playing the prodigal, and grown 
exceedingly sensual and grovelling ; thou hast been indolent in 
.seeking after things above, and hast been thinking to take up 
thy rest in things below. Dost thou not hear the voice of God, 
saying, " Arise ye, and depart ; for this is not your rest .''" 
What satisfaction hast thou gained from creatures, as distinct 
from the Creator ? Have not the most hopeful ways to settle 
and compose thyself proved very ineffectual ? God bids thee 
" cease from man, whose breath is in his nostrils ;" and as to 
worldly means they have proved the greatest disturbers of thy 
peace. Are not the church's troubles many and likely to be 
more .'' Are not thy own troubles many and likely to increase .? 
Art thou not molested from without and from within ? Art 
thou not troubled to see the work of God go on so slowly, and 
the work of man to be so successful ? Doth it not trouble thee 
to see the afflictions of Joseph and the scattered stones of Jeru- 
salem ? Doth it not trouble thee to see the child of Reforma- 
tion in the birth, and yet no strength to bring forth ? Doth it 
not trouble thee to see the Lord of life and glory so little re- 
garded, and to hear the name of God lamentably blasphemed ? 
Doth it not trouble thee to see so few converted, and so many 
hardened by the means of grace ? to see so many backslide and 
quite desert the right paths of religion P to see so many loathe 
the purest and plainest truths and follow after fables ? Doth it 
not trouble thee to see so many precious saints grow cold and 
dull, and quite relinquish their first love ? Doth it not trouble 
thee to see saints look so shyly one upon another, as if they 
were not any thing related, because they differ in their judg- 
ments ? Do not the wicked rejoice in their contentions, and 
the weak take just offence ? Doth it not trouble thee that all 
these things do trouble thee no more "^ If thou dost look no 
farther than thyself, there will appear a sea of personal troubles. 
Art thou not often troubled that thou art not better qualified 
for thy work, and that it is no more successful, that sinners are 
not called and converted, and that saints are not comforted and 
confirmed ? Do not thy bowels yearn over poor ignorant, hard- 
hearted people, and for some wicked and wretclied souls that 
know not their riglit hands from their left in spiritual things .'' 
Do not these things beat up a march for the removal of tliy 
pitched tent ? O my soul, metliinks these things should shame 
thee out of thy security, and provoke thee to industry. Alas, 
my soul, there arc many things amiss in thee that ought to be 


amended, many things are perishing that should be repaired, 
many graces dying that should be recruited, and many lusts 
reviving that should be mortified. Surely thy work is great, 
thy time short, and thy strength small ; therefore apply to the 
business with diligence. Be serious in matters of eternity, be 
resolute for God in his work, be upright with God in his ways, 
and let all thy actions testify, thou miudest thy everlasting in- 
terests more than thy transitory pleasures. Let graces have 
their perfect work, Christ alone his due esteem, and whatever 
is against him be perfectly hated in thy breast: at last thy glory 
shall make amends for all thy misery. 


How long is it, O my soul, since thou didst delightfully enjoy 
the presence of thy God in secret? Time hath been, when there 
was sweet intercourse of love between thy God and thee, when 
thy heart was melted with tenderness and affection. Time hath 
been, when the Lord gave thee some special testimonies of his 
unchangeable love and let thee see thy interest in himself, when 
he transported thee with the sacred communications of his Spi- 
rit, so that thou hast been loth to part with divine employments. 
But of late there hath been a great strangeness betwixt thee 
and God, private duties and public exercises have dwindled 
mostly into outward forms. Will not Nadab and Abihu tell 
thee that the fire of God's anger is hottest near the altar ? 
Art thou so much exercised in public employments and yet 
neglectest private and secret humiliation ? Dost thou think the 
one will obtain ■a dispensation for the neglect of the other .'' 
Because thou art exercised much publicly, shouldst thou not so 
much the more prepare in private .'* Thou hast said, (and dost 
thou not believe thyself.'^) that a man is so far a Christian, as 
he is one in secret between God and his own soul, and that 
secret acts of religion are precious tokens of sincerity. Thou 
mayest do much before men, pray zealously, preach affectionately, 
and take much pains to divide the word of God aright, and yet 
all be tainted with the secret leaven of hypocrisy ; yea, if thou 
dost not make conscience of private as well as public duties, 
thy ends are very liable to suspicion, thy case dangerous, and 
thy heart too, too deceitful. Thou mayest study hard to ob- 
tain human accomplishments, preach in the best manner thou 
canst to gain credit v.-ith men, and pray with fluent expressions 
to be heard of men, and all this for thy maintenance ; but if 
that be all, alas, pity thyself, and lay thy state to heart. AVhy 
dost thou make others believe thou enjo3'cst something of God 
in secret, if it be not so .'' Doth not God scan all thy ways and 


know whether things be as they seem ? True, mdeed, thou 
mayest cast dust before the eyes of the most eminent saints and 
make them believe thou art a close walking Christian, and 
yet remain a licentious atheist in thy closet. God cannot be 
mocked as men may, nor doth he see as man seeth. Fair words 
and a false heart will not pass current in the court of heaven. 
Dost thou not sometimes mention secret communion with God 
before others .'' Now, where is it .'* Wilt thou lie to the Lord, 
and horribly profane his sacred name .'' Nay, my soul, do not 
so wickedly. Art thou not ashamed that others should think 
better of thee than thou art "^ Ah, blush when thou dost men- 
tion a soul's sweet enjoyment of God, of which thou thyself hast 
so little experience. Be ashamed of thy negligence in the 
performance of duties, or thy ready entertainment of strange 
distracting thoughts therein. Of all the burdens that oppress 
me, this hard and stupid heart is the greatest load, and is the 
most dangei'ous, except the Lord work a miracle in raising 
tlie dead. 

Consider, O my soul, what are the actions thou shouldst per- 
form as a preparation for the sabbath wliich is so near, on which 
thou hopest to enjoy the gracious presence of thy God. Thou 
art to preach to God's people to-morrow, preach to thyself to- 
day. God hath appointed thee to dispense the mysteries of the 
gospel to others, and do not those mysteries concern tliyself as 
well as them '^ Wouldst thou be willing that tliy people should 
be saved, and care not if thyself be damned 't Is not heaven 
large enough for all "^ Art thou so mad as to provide a rich 
feast, though served up in mean dishes, and to invite others to 
eat thereof, and wilt thou thyself famish and pine away "^ Will 
not the feast prove delightful to thy taste and refreshing to thy- 
self .^ Mayest thou not then with greater confidence invite thy 
people to partake abundantly of this spiritual provision, and tell 
them how good and wholesome it is from thy own experience "^ 
The celestial bread of this feast, this divine manna that de- 
scends from heaven, is enough to feed all true Israelites for 
ever. If any want, it is not through deficiency in the treasure, 
but the insufficiency of the conveyers to poor needy souls. If 
any die by thirst, it is not that there is a want of the water of 
life, the fountain is full and overflowing, but because, either with 
Hagar, men want light to discover the v/ell, or, with the woman 
of Samaria, they want a bucket to draw with. Well, my soul, 
seeing there is enough, get thy share ; thy people will have none 
the less but more. Wilt thou not then speak as having been 
taught those saving truths thou delivercst.^ "NA'hen thou do^t 

396 I,ll-K OF THE llEV. (). HEYWOOD. 

mention truths indifferently and heedlessly as if thou gavest not 
credit to them thyself, how canst thou believe that others will em- 
brace them ? Surely if thou failest in this, thou failest in thy 
duty. ~ Is this course any more than the necessary duty of a 
Christian? and dost thou cease to be a Christian when thou dost 
begin to be a minister? God forbid. Dost thou not sometimes 
instruct the people that their duty, when they have heard the 
word, is to ruminate upon it ; and shovildst not thou do so much 
the more, seeing there is the concurrence both of thy general and 
particular calling .'' 

O my soul, hast thou not much to do in preparation for the 
sabbath .'' Thou art to pray on behalf both of thyself and peo- 
ple to-morrow. Go to thy God, lie low before him, commence 
thy suit, and wrest a blessing from his hands by importunity. 
Thou hast often met with God's presence in his work, but doth 
that engage him in thy favovir so that he should not act freely .'' 
He hath never left thee to thyself, but doth that evince either 
that thy piety or abilities are the stronger ? or that, if God 
should leave thee, thou wilt be able to go on as successfully as 
before .'' No, no, if he hath been thy helper, thou art the more 
beholden to free grace. O praise him for these former supplies 
of his grace, prize at a higher rate the influences of his Spirit, 
admire him for those sweet tokens of love sent in public ordi- 
nances to thee, and pray hard for his assisting and accepting 
grace to-morrow. Plead promises with him, bewail thy inability 
without him, wrestle for a blessing from him, and do not let 
him go till thy heart be affected as a presage of future mercies. 
Shouldst thou not likevvise, O my soul, put in a word for thy 
people ? If God enlai'ge thee ever so much in speaking, and 
give thee a wide and open door of utterance, what good will 
that do except he bow the ears of the people, and give them a 
door of entrance ? The rain of heaven m^ay fall and yet the 
earth remain barren, the seed may be sown yet never come to 
perfection, except God cause it to fructify. The spiritual hus- 
bandman may dig and take much pains to little purpose ; the 
plants of the Lord springing in the church will never bear 
much fruit, except they be well rooted beloAv and well watered 
above ; — and can mortal man do this ? If the word come to 
man only by the strength of man, the power of man can easily 
resist iti but if it come with God''s power it shall prevail; then 
the security of man cannot abide its force, and the wilful impe- 
nitency and obstinacy of man cannot counteract or withstand 
it; it will prove itself the power of God unto salvation. Apply 
to the throne of grace, take no denial, and God will own thy 

soi.ii,OQUiES. 397 

praiyers and crown tliy pains with desired success in the conver- 
sion of souls. 

Advance thyself once again, my soul, and mount up heaven- 
wards ; up and be doing, and delight thyseli' with anticipations 
of thy rest. Look upon heaven as a reality, and view thy pro- 
perty therein ; survey the delights thereof, and see if all these 
things will not affect thy heart witli admiration, and transport 
thee with holy ecstacy beyond thyself.'' Let others dream of 
golden mountains and glittering sands, and hang their hopes on 
castles in the air ; yet keep thou to this orthodox truth, that 
heaven is above, — that the celestial city hath foundations, 
whereas the earth hath none but hangs on nothing in the air. 
Do thou fix the anchor of thy hope beyond the mortal veil of 
flesh, in the vast and boundless ocean of eternity. Bathe thy- 
self in the rivers of pleasure, and see if it will not set thee long- 
ing for full enjoyment. O my soul, what a life mightest thou 
live if heaven were as much in thy thoughts as earth, if thy 
mind were lifted up above this inferior world, conversing with 
the Lord of life and glory. Say now, what is it thou canst de- 
sire that heaven cannot afford ? If thou wouldst have a conflu- 
ence of all good things, behold enough to satisfy the enlarged 
desires of the most capacious mind. Whither wouldst thou 
aspire .'' Canst thou be exalted higher than into the highest 
room ? But mayest thou enjoy this felicity ? Yes, surely ; 
God is serious in offering it, why then should I question it ? 
Did God ever dissemble to obtain proselytes .'' Harbour not 
such a blasphemous thought. Yes, he will give it to some, but 
may I have any share therein ? Why not thou, O my soul ? 
Hath he made such large and liberal promises to give a king- 
dom to his flock, and why not to thee ? But I am a poor sinful, 
wretched, worthless creature ? What then ? Art thou beyond 
the reach of free grace .'' Canst thou think to be accepted on 
thy own account ? Was ever any one admitted for his deserts, 
or excluded for want of merit .'' Are not those thrust out who 
come to buy heaven, and such received as come to beg entrance ? 
The poor receive the gospel, which is the kingdom of heaven, 
and that kingdom of heaven will receive them. Canst thou but 
get to be poor in spirit, God will make thee rich in faith ; the 
poorer thou art in thyself the richer in him. If poverty were 
all, that I know would be dispensed with ; but I am not only 
poor but a bankrupt, being many thousand talents in debt in 
the book of heaven ; and dost thou think that will hinder ? Is 
not he that is willing to make thee rich, able also to pay thy 
debt ? Did Christ die to enrich thee and not to set thee free .'' 


Or dost tliou think thy debts are beyond tlie price of his infinite 
satisfaction ? Are thy garments filthy ? Fear not, he hatli 
change of raiment ; all he bids thee do is, to be willing to part 
with thine and change them for his glorious robes ; and art 
thou not desirous of that ? Ah, yes, fiiin enough long since, 
God knows. IMy sins have been my burden, and shall I not 
thank the hand that takes off such a load ? O my soul, wouldst 
thou not have the Lord Jesus on his own terms, to be thy 
Sovereign as well as Saviour, to be thy lawgiver and to rule 
thee according to his -will, though against thy carnal bias ? My 
soul, if thou art willing, he is very willing ; then the engage- 
ment is made, and notliing now sliall part us asunder. Thou 
hast the Lord firm enovigh in his word, the writings are made 
in the scriptures, the debt is cancelled, the promises ratify it, 
tlie oath of God seals it, and the blessed Trinity confirm it by all 
their united acts for thy salvation ; the saints in heaven and 
earth are legal witnesses. Hath not God wrought something 
in thee above and beyond nature, and doth he not act towards 
thee as if he meant to save thee ? Else, what mean those 
strong convictions thou once hadst, taking thee from all thy 
carnal rests.'* What mean those pangs of regeneration formerly, 
and those constant warrings in thy breast against Satan .^ What 
mean that fearfiilness to ofl'end God, carefulness to walk accord- 
ing to his revealed will, those withdrawings of thy heart from 
sublunary vanities and resting on the chief good .^ Surely these 
footsteps of free grace and traces of undeserved love upon thy 
Iieart, indicate more than a common work. Look on heaven as 
thy own, and rejoice therein as thy peculiar portion. Will 
not the heir of an estate be delighted with the consideration of 
what he shall hereafter enjoy .' And wilt not thou, O my soul, 
delight thyself in heaven though at some distance "^ Advance 
thyself and soar heavenwards in panting ejaculations. 


Thou hast now been, my soul, to visit a dear friend on a 
sick bed, and hast delighted thyself in holy conference about 
matters of gi'eat concern. Follow those tender sensations thou 
liast felt, until thou art as full of comfort as thy heart can hold. 
Miss not so fair an opportunity, but spread thy sails, for now a 
gale of grace blows, so that the ship of the soul may be con- 
veyed nearer the haven. Blow up the small spark into a flame, 
for it may do thee much good in consuming thy corruptions, 
and thawing into godly sorrow thy hard, frozen, and icy heart. 
It may be of use in warming and kindling thy cold and indif- 
ferent affections. It is true, alas ! that it is only as a little spai-k 


compared with a mighty ocean ; but is not (iocl omnipotent ? 
Can he not preserve as well as create grace in the heart? Then 
fear not, O my soul, all the enemies of thy salvation ; they may 
disturb thee, but cannot ruin thee. Christ who " is mighty to 
save,'' hath taken the government of the world on his own 
shoulders ; he bears up the pillars of his church, and preserves 
all his people ; he can " save to the uttermost," because he can 
keep to the utmost extremity, yea, and beyond the utmost m.a- 
lice of the fiends of hell ; they are but finite, he is infinite. If, 
upon solid grounds, thou believest thyself to be a partaker of 
gTace, or if any spark of it be in thee, that divine nature shall 
not be lost. Blessed be that God who hath devised an extra- 
ordinary method for the salvation of poor souls, and doth re- 
solve to carry them through by his almighty arm. My soul is 
the Lord's deposit, in safe custody, and I am persuaded that 
" he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him 
against that day.*" My spiritual life m.ay be hid from me, but 
it is safe enough if it be " hid with Christ in God." He that 
hides can surely find, though I cannot, and m.ake me so to find 
my God that I shall never lose sight of him for ever. 


What changes are there, O my soul, in this thy passage to 
eternity ! What sudden alterations dost thou experience in a 
little time ! Thou art travelling thi-ough a wilderness, wherein 
the way is hills and dales. No sooner dost thou pass over one 
mountain of opposition in thy journey, than thou art involved 
in the contrary extreme of a low condition. Sometimes tliou 
art sinking in deep mire, and then again thou art set upon the 
rock that is higher than thou; sometimes the meridian sun doth 
enlighten the Goshen of my soul, and then again black Egyp- 
tian darkness overspreads me. My God sometimes, for reasons 
of his own and for ends best known to himself, doth leave me to 
seek far for spiritual evidences, so that I doubt whether I have 
any spiritual life at all. My pulse at times beats very slowly 
heavenwards, nay, I give up myself as dead : yet Christ comes 
and tells me, I am not dead but sleeping. Ah ! thought I, 
this is a dead sleep : canst thou awake me ? Then came my 
merciful Saviour and subdued my unbelief with a soul-reviving 
word, saying, " Come forth." Then I felt as Peter, James, 
and John, on the mount when Christ was transfigured, willing 
still to be in such a place and state. I thought I was as with 
the two disciples going to Emmaus, my heart burnt within me 
when I heard him speaking. Never did a poor fatigued travel- 
ler, in a hot summer's day, find such a shadow to shelter his 


weary body. I was as liappy as Jonah under his gourd, but 
Jonah\s gourd was quickly gone and so was mine. Then I 
seemed to myself in a worse state than before. What was the 
cause of the change I know not, but I partly guess that some 
secret sin was the worm that gnawed the vitals of my spiritual 
comforts. Ah sin ! must thou always come to interrupt me in 
my spiritual enjoyments ? Shall I always carry in me a proud, 
hard, sensual, backsliding heart.'' AVill these corruptions al- 
ways take away my communion with God ? Must weariness 
and distracting thoughts still prevail against me ? It is a hard 
case, that God the owner of my soul cannot bear rule in his 
house as he pleaseth, but these unmannerly lusts will always be 
intruding, and when he thrusts them out and bolts the door, 
my treacherous heart within opens to Satan without. But I 
must not despair, for the Lord will help me at the last, and I 
shall sing triumphant songs when he hath delivered me out of 
tlie hand of all my enemies. 


What a gi'eat disproportion is there, O my soul, betwixt a 
life in glory and in this present state, though in the kingdom of 
grace ! There is nothing here but sinning and suffering ; there 
is nothing there but singing and triumph. These sins of mine 
may accompany me in all my natural, civil, and spiritual actions 
here, and attend me to my death-bed ; but that is the furthest 
they shall go, they shall leave me when the soul leaves the 
body ; sin can no more go with me to heaven, than one spark of 
true grace shall be thrust down to hell. O my soul, thou canst 
scarce obtain a day or an hour to spend it totally without some 
trouble, or free from vain-distracting thoughts in communion 
with God ; but it shall be otherwise in the world above. Fear 
not, a time will come, when no ignorance shall becloud thy un- 
derstanding, no perverseness shall militate against the rational 
acts of thy reformed will, no irregularity shall withdraw thy 
well-turned affections out of their right course of holy and 
honourable devotion. Thy weak and brittle memory, that 
used to forget what is good and to be tenacious of evil, shall 
then discharge its duty, and easily recollect what sliall substan- 
tiate God''s works of wonder, and prove the security of thy own 
felicity. My soul, thou wilt not then complain of God's witli- 
drawings from thee, of his shutting out thy prayers, or rather 
praises. Thou wilt not then bemoan the loss of the light of 
his countenance, or the hidings of his face in anger, or with- 
drawing himself behind the curtain, or wrapping himself up in 
a thick cloud, so that thy prayers cannot pass through. No, 


thy God will there say to thee once fur all, that he is well 
pleased with thee for his Son's sake. Thou wilt have no need 
to fear backsliding as thou often didst here ; no, he that hath 
brought thee through many changes, will keep thee there above 
and without a change ; he that is himself immutable will make 
thee so too. Thy case will be far better than Adam's in para- 
dise, whose white robe of innocence was soon changed to a 
dismal garb of depravity. God gave him a power to stand 
only if he would, but he will give thee both the will and the 
power of keeping thy firm station. He that gives thee change 
of raiment will never change thy raiment ; he that clotheth 
tliee with linen clean and white, which is the righteousness of 
saints, will never divest thee of thy garments, which have been 
washed and made white in the blood of the Lamb. O my sovil, 
when thou hast been washed in the v/ater of sanctification, that 
issued from tlie blessed side of Christ v/hen hanging on the 
cross, how often, alas ! hast thou returned to thy swinish wal- 
lowing in the mire, and then again the Lord hath pitied and 
purified thee. How often hast thou resolved against corruptions, 
and then broken thy bonds, and made new work for thy soul 
again to renew its repentance ! Thus thou dost spend thy 
days as in a circle, sometimes in offending thy God, and then 
getting reconciled, sinning again and then being reconciled 
again ; it may be so here, but shall not be so hereafter. If 
thou dost but once enter eternity, thou mayest there bathe thy 
soul in sweet delights that shall never end, and account it the 
perfection of thy happiness, that there will be no end of thy 
perfection, happiness, and glory. Thou shalt meet no more 
with stagnant pools of waters that might contaminate thy soul, 
but drink abundantly of those rivers of pleasures that are at 
God's right hand, and flow for evermore. These things will 
thy God do for thee and not forsake thee. 


Methinks, I hear the sad complaint of ancient prophets re- 
vived and patlietically uttered, by the servants of God in the 
ministry at this day : " Who hath believed our report ? and to 
whom is the arm of the Lord revealed .'''"' This, alas ! is the 
current language of the most sensible and conscientious minis- 
ters, though I could desire it were my case alone. I should 
be freely content, yea, very glad if the work were done by any, 
though I had no share in the praise thereof; so far am I from 
envying such as are successful in the good work. But alas ! 
this is the common lot of many beside myself. Ah, sad k the 
case and much to be lamented ! for by it God loseth his glory, 

VOL. I. 2d 


people lose tlieir souls, and ministers their pains. God I know 
can get much glory to his justice by the destruction of souls ; 
but this is not so much for preachers' consolation, nor the ad- 
vancement of free grace. And must poor ministers expend 
their property and Aveary out their bodies, must they pray and 
preach, read and study, night and day, with many apprehensions 
and tears, and the result of all be nothing else but the damna- 
tion of souls ? Shall we exert ourselves to the utmost in ac- 
commodating tniths to our people's ears, seek to find out ac- 
ceptable words, waste our lungs, injure our health, and exhaust 
our spirits in spreading before our people the richly furnished 
table of the gospel, together with a view of their forlorn state, 
and with seriousness in the name of Christ invite and urge 
them to piirtake freely or else they will perish ; and yet for all 
this people be no better ? This damps our courage, and sinks 
our spirits, to see our hopes disappointed, our ends thwarted, 
and our designs frustrated, so that we are almost ashamed to 
own our work. I have sometimes scrupled whether I could 
with a clear conscience receive any wages from my people, see- 
ing I benefit them so little. It is a heavy case; if we look 
about us on one side, there is a set of boon companions who 
spend their days in mirth, and out of compliment once a month, 
it may be, attend on the public ordinance ; these are far out of 
the reach of the word, except we could speak so loudly that 
they could hear us at their alehouse bench. Others come ordi- 
narily, but they either sleep their time away or stare it out, and 
with the adder stop their ears and will not hear the charmer's 
melodious tune that might rouse them out of their security. 
Others either audaciously outface the clearest truths of God, or 
loathe the heavenly manna. Some smother any convictions of 
heart by profane practices. Others with whom we have taken 
much pains, of whom we have conceived good hopes, from 
whom we expected much fi-uit to God's glory ; these alas ! that 
were so forward in religion, turn out of the way and embrace 
novel things, dote upon vanities, and follow after lies ; and if 
any wind of doctrine come they are quickly carried over deck 
into a sea of error. It is a sad thing to see our people seduced 
before our eyes, and we know not how to help it. It is a pani- 
ful spectacle to witness our dearest, natural, civil, and as we 
hoped, our christian friends that professed much love to us, as 
the Galatians to Paul, now railing upon us with the most oppro- 
brious and reviling nicknames, and saying, they are now set at 
liberty from those insulting priests and Babylonish enchanters. 
All this aggravates our grief. Should not all the ministers in 
the nation expostulate with God, and earnestly desire him to 


show the cause of his contending with them ? It is the bitter- 
est cup a poor minister can taste, except it be hell itself, when 
he must study, preach, pray, and be very conscientious in the 
discharge of ministerial duties, and all to sink men deeper in 
misery, to make them more inexcusable, and their condemna- 
tion more intolerable. Our doctrine is generally a savour of 
life, but may prove a savour of death through men's corruptions. 
God departs by degrees. The effectual power of God may be 
removed from his ordinances, first, in refusing a converting 
power to them ; then he may remove some candlesticks and 
leave us in twilight, and at last quite vanish out of sight : or 
else he may extinguish all the lights and so leave the poor na- 
tion involved in darkness. This is sad ; but if we discharge 
our duties as ministers, be diligent in watching over our people's 
souls, our labour will return to our own bosom to our eternal 
advantage ; though we may be disappointed, and Israel be not 
gathered, yet if we be found in Christ, we shall be glorified, 
and that will be compensation for our sorrows. 


Return again, my soul, into thine own bosom, and search 
the secret conclaves of thy heart. Kow happy wast thou in 
the sweet enjoyment of thy God ! How joyful wast thou when 
the whispers of God's comforting Spirit told thee of thy inte- 
rest in Christ, the pardon of thy sins, and saving of thy soul ! 
But how sad shouldst thou now be when all tliese things are 
hid from thine eyes ! Thy fellowship with the Father and 
the Son, through the Spirit, did rejoice thy heart ; but now, 
alas ! my soul is like a moaning turtle-dove deprived of her 
mate. Once I can remember, upon good and solid grounds I 
could call Christ my dear and much loved friend, my elder 
brotlier, and he did take it well at my unworthy hands ; but 
now, methinks, I dare, not speak unto him, because I have 
spoken so much against him. He may justly speak against me 
in his fury, and vex me in his sore displeasure. I dare not now 
call him my God, lest I should miscall him, and he be angry 
with me for using such a title. I dare not call him to me for 
my help, lest instead of a friend he show himself an enemy, and 
tear my soul in pieces like a lion. He hath already withdrawn 
himself, he hides his face and writes bitter things against me, 
and makes me to possess the sins of my life and heart. Me- 
thinks I could well take up those sad and bitter complaints of 
those holy men of God in scripture, Job and David ; but alas ! 
how short am I of them in sorrow for the Lord's displeasure. 
Methinks I could mourn my Lord's departure in the words, 


404 LIFE or THE llEV. O. HEY wo 01). - 

but cannot with tlie heart cf Christ, when in the sorest agony 
that ever the sun perceived, he said, " My God, my God, why 
hast thou forsaken me ?"" But there is this great difference, he 
spoke with a confident persuasion of his relation to God the 
Father (being his eternal Son in whom he was even then well 
pleased,) but I dare not affirm my interest in the Lord. To the 
latter part of the sentence I have reason to subscribe, but the 
former I cannot fully appropriate ; I have lost my evidence, yet 
may the Lord help me to keep near to him by a close adherence. 
I will not quite despond in mind, renounce my hopes, and give 
up my all as lost ; for suppose the work never was right, and 
grace was never wrouglit, yet there is hope if I do now begin 
tiie work anev/. I dare not call in question God's truth and 
faithfulness, nor must I deny what God hath done for my poor 
soul ; I will not say, " Is his mercy clean gone for ever, and 
will he be favourable no more .'*" I hope I shall acknowledge the 
Lord's infinite mercy tliough he condemn me, and affirm against 
all atheistical thoughts and diabolical insinuations, that God is 
true to his part of the covenant, but I have been most false and 
perfidious in mine ; I alone am the cause of this my sorrow. 
Should God not only hide his face for awhile, but make all my 
days in the flesh dark and dismal, and at last exclude me from 
his presence for ever, I could find no fault with him, I must 
necessarily justify the Lord ; for he is " holy in all his ways, 
and rigliteous in all his works"' of justice as well as mercy. But, 
O my soul, be of good cheer, raise thy hopes and consider whom 
thou hast to deal with — an infinite God, and not a mortal 
man, and therefore one v/ho hath the best design in bestowing 
his spiritual mercies. Suppose the Lord frown now, he may 
smile hereafter ; though he be angry he may be pacified, his 
wrath endureth for a moment, but his loving-kindness is ever- 
lasting. This is but a storm raised by the vapours of thy sins, 
it will quickly be blown over, and God will return. He with- 
draws but for thy good, to make thee prize the means of grace 
more. Perhaps he doth it to convince thee of thy sloth and 
sensuality, to animate thee to future diligence, to deter thee 
from future backsliding, or to try thy truth and sincerity. 
Wait awhile and thou wilt see he will shine upon thy poor, 
forlorn, and sad condition, and restore comforts to thee not- 
withstanding all this mourning. In the mean time, my soul, be 
silent, shut thy mouth, accuse not God, repine not at his dis- 
pensations, submit to his will, and drink the bitter cup which 
God hath prepared for thee ; perhaps he may mingle some 
honey with the gall. But if the Lord should draw thee all the 
way through fire, darkness, and death, yet if he lead thee to 


peace, light, and life at last, he will be a perfect Saviour and 
thou an infinite gainer ; heaven will make amends for all. The 
sharper thy way the sweeter will be thy home, and the length 
of the road in the wilderness will give a better relish to Canaan s 
milk and honey. 


Stir up thyself, O my forsaken soul, and run to God. Shame 
upon this indolent humour ! It will slay my soul and 
strengthen my corruptions, it will revive my sins and crucify 
my graces. Go to God, my soul, die guilt of many conscience- 
wasting sins are upon thee, both of omission and commission ; 
and is it not dangerous to sleep in such a state ? Can it be 
safe to be in rebellion against the King of heaven, who can 
crush thee tb nothing in a moment by a word or a touch ? Is 
there not unspeakable hazard in resting without a reconciled 
God ? How knowest thou but he may send thee out of the 
world before the day dawn ; and is it not a matter of some 
moment to go into eternity especially in this thy great uncer- 
tainty ? Dost thou not fear this great and mighty Jehovah, 
who, after he hath killed the body, can cast both body and soul 
to hell ? If a strong man armed should stand at thy bedside 
vowing thy death, couldst thou sleep quietly ? Yet he could 
not do thee a thousandth part of the evil the Lord can do : 
there is no greater happiness than to have God thy friend, and 
no greater misery than to have him thy enemy. Give him then 
no rest day or night until he hear, and hearing, help, and help- 
ing, bring a suitable remedy to thy restless state. Tell him, 
O my soul, what he himself liath said, what Christ hath suf- 
fered, and urge him Avith all the golden, gracious, precious 
promises in his sacred book. Tell God, thou hast deserved 
the flames of his justice for ever ; but ask him if he delighteth 
not to show mercy ? Tell him thou art not worthy to be called 
a son ; but ask him if he will not admit thee once again into 
his family, to be amongst his lowest servants H Tell God all 
the odious circumstances of thy sins, that thou mayest be vile 
in thy own eyes ; but ask him if he delights not in pardoning 
iniquity, transgression, and sin ? Expostulate the case thus 
with God, and spread thy cause before him. Let God perceive 
by thy groans that though thou art a sinner, yet thou art a 
repenting sinner ; though a prodigal, yet a returning prodigal. 
As thy offences have been against light and strong convictions; 
so let thy repentance be fvill of light and strong resolutions. 

As thou hast used means to draw thyself to sin, so now use 
arguments to drive thyself to God. As thou hast met tempta- 
tions, and courteously shaken hands with Satan's suggestions; 


SO now bestir thyself to get rid thereof and bid an everlasting 
farewell to them. Commit thyself to God, and let nothing 
satisfy but the enjoyment of his presence. Use all appointed 
means to attain this good end. Pray, read, and meditate till 
thou find him whom thou lovest. But make not thy duties thy 
saviours, for so they will prove thy destroyers. Do what thou 
canst, but trust in nothing that thou dost ; lay all the stress, 
both for acceptance and assistance, upon the grace of God in 
Christ. Though thou deservest to be hated notwithstanding 
all thy best performances, for thine own sake, yet perhaps he 
may save thee and delight in thee, for the sake of the Beloved 
of his own bosom, and satisfy thee with the discovery of his love 
in due time, and never leave thee comfortless again. 


Come once again, my soul, and let me bring thee to the 
touchstone, lest God hereafter try thee and thou be faulty. 
Are thy graces become more in number and degree than for- 
merly ? Are tliy corruptions weaker than before ? Is thy 
heart softer and holier than it was the last year, month, or 
^eek ? Are thy affections nearer heaven and more delighted 
in thy God ? Is thy judgment sounder, clearer, and more 
raised than heretofore ^ Dost thou see a greater vanity in in- 
ferior objects and a greater excellency in Christ, grace, and 
gospel mysteries ? Is thy conversation more divine, testifying 
thy nearer approach to heaven ? What sayest thou, are these 
things thus in thee, and dost thou feel thyself in svich a pos- 
ture ? Methinks thou art like poor Israel in the wilderness 
that was still travelling for forty years, but gained little ground, 
that went about this and the otlier hill and came again to the 
same place ; so my soul is trudging on and gets not forward, 
and for one step forv.ard sometimes goes three back. Methinks 
my soul is like a lazy scholar that comes awhile to school, 
and then is taken off, or plays the truant, and loseth all that 
ever he had learned ; so my truant soul begins a little to follow 
its business, but something takes it off, and then there is a return 
to its former state of indolence. Sometimes I have taken much 
pains with this dull and heavy heart of mine to raise it hea- 
venwards, and when I have got it to some degree of heavenly 
elevation, down it falls again. No sooner do I weed out of the 
field of my barren heart the tares of sin, than it is quickly 
overgrown again with sensual cogitations. For shame, my soul, 
dost thou not see that thy inferiors in years, who set out long 
after thee, have left thee far behind .'' Some that had not such 
means cf growth have, by their industry, attained to more soli- 


dity of comfort, stability in grace, certainty of faith, and fer- 
vency of spirit. New converts are fresh and lively, raised more 
in their affections, more constant in their communion with God, 
more steady in their holy conversation, and more filled with 
sweet experience of God's love to their souls. Alas ! must thou 
be still complaining of thy revolting and backsliding heart .^^ 
Must thou lament thy state and spend thy days in mournful 
elegies ? Shouldst thou not have taken thy flight into the 
more noble and elevated parts of Christianity, and soul-tran- 
sporting enjoyments of thy God.'^ Shouldst thou not have been 
delighting thyself in anticipations of eternity, and rising in holy 
wishes and longings for thy rest ? Shouldst thou not by this 
time have trodden Satan under foot, bid defiance to thy des- 
perate foe, and been rid of thy baneful strong corruptions that 
haunt thee ? But, alas ! how unstable art thou thus to retreat, 
advance, and then retreat again. How mournful is it to spend 
thy days in lamentable strains, sometimes up and sometimes 
down, and often at a loss, and far to seek for peace, comfort, 
and a sense of pardon ! How long must it be thus with thee ? 
When will it be that I shall hear thee say, as good old Simeon, 
" Lord, now let thy servant depart in peace, according to thy 
word; for mine eyes have seen thy salvation .'^ " When will 
my soul be settled in a firm posture, my heart as full of spiritual 
joy as it can hold, and nothing wanting but the breaking down 
of this wall of flesh, that I may be in my Father's palace re- 
joicing in him and v^^ith him for ever ? Ah ! must I never see 
the happy day, when I may bring God more glory, and be 
more useful in my place and calling ? Lord, help me to mend 
my pace, and run my race with more delight, and press towards 
the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. 


Ah, little did I think, my soul, thou wouldst have been so 
long from God and longed so little for communion with him ! 
But now I see something of the boundless depth of my deceit- 
ful heart ; who can know it ? Full often has God's blessed 
Spirit spoken loud in thy deaf ears, saying, return, return ; 
but thou hast stopped thy ears and strenuously resisted, 
quenched, and grieved the Holy Spirit. Sometimes thou hast 
been v/illing to listen to the suggestions of God's Spirit but 
flesh and blood and carnal reasonings have diverted thy inten- 
tions. Sometimes thou hast begun with serious sadness to 
weep and pray, and exercise faith in the Lord, but hast been 
taken off by violent distractions, and vehement wanderings of 
thy heart. Come now, my soul, what is it that is wont to keep 


thee from this duty ? Is it the guilt of many sins that drives 
thee from the Lord ? Hast thou not the greater need on that 
account to approach unto him, who hath enjoined all weary 
and heavy laden souls to repose themselves on him ? Must 
not thy sin be laid on Christ or on thyself? and whether dost 
thou think can better bear it, infinite God-man, or finite worm- 
man ? Or doth thy long absence from God affright thee and 
thy strangeness to him terrify thee ? The rather and sooner 
must thou come on that account. Is there any good to be had 
in distance from him .'' and wilt thou be more prepared another 
time than now ? Art thou afraid that God is so displeased with 
thee that he will not receive thee ? Consider, hath not God 
often said, he v/ill heal backsliders and receive offending prodi- 
gals ? Venture then, and again put God to it, thou shalt find 
him faithful to his promises. Was ever any rejected that re- 
pented ; or canst thou find examples to testify God's unkind- 
ness .'* Nay, nay, my soul, recollect thy own experience, and 
that may keep thee from discouragement. Repair to God, for 
that is indispensable, and let not a supposition of thy rejection 
make thee run into inevitable destruction. Believing is a ven- 
ture, and will not a merchant venture much on a probability ? 
A may-be, is ground enough for faith on scripture precedents. 
Who knows but God may return and leave a blessing behind .'' 


God's people are now in public and I am deprived of their 
society ; but it is by reason of my incapacity. My heart is 
with them and fain v/ould this frail body follow ; but at present 
God hath clipped my wings and manacled my legs, bolted my 
chamber door, and made that my prison which was wont to be 
my palace. But God is just and deals most righteously with 
me. My heart was formerly imprisoned in his service ; now 
my body is imprisoned from his service in public. I looked 
not to my feet when I trod the way to his house ; now he keeps 
my feet from treading in it. My heart was at home sometimes 
when my body was exercised in public duties ; now my body is 
at home, and my heart is, I hope, with God and his saints in 
the courts of his house. I have made the Lord's day too much 
like a week day in sinning and neglecting God's service ; now 
he makes it like a week day in my being absent from public 
worship. I have not made sabbath day duties a delight ; now 
God hath made the sabbath day wearisome through pain. JVIy 
soul hath not returned from its rest in sinning : nov/ God keep- 
eth my body from rest in suffering. My church devotion has 
been too much confined to form ; now mv heart devotion is con- 


fined to my chamber. I appeared in public what I was not in 
private ; now I cannot appear in public any part of what I am. 
As I have done, so God hath done to me, though not accord- 
ing to my deserts, but in faithfulness hath he afflicted me, and 
in much tenderness too ; for though he hath excluded me from 
public yet not from private communion. Though the promise 
of his presence be to two or three met in his name in public, 
yet he excludes not single persons from the blessing in private. 
He meets his hidden ones in any corner where they find him. 
Though he feeds his flock beside the shepherd tents, yet he 
can carry the lambs in his arms, give them food alone, and 
make them lie down in a green pasture. His Spirit moves 
most on the waters of the sanctuary, yet he is not straitened 
nor is his hand shortened ; he is a well of living waters and as 
streams from Lebanon. God is omnipresent, therefore the true 
worshippers respect neither mount Zion nor the mountain of 
Samaria, but worship him in spirit and in truth. He respects 
places no more than persons, let it be church or chamber. If 
I may enjoy thee, O Lord, no matter where it is, thy presence 
makes a palace of a prison, but the want of it makes a paradise, 
a dungeon, a hell ; where the prince's presence is, tliere is the 
court. I would rather have communion with thee here, without 
tliy people, than have communion with thy people in thy house, 
without thee. Far be it from me to reject the public ordi- 
nances, or forsake the assembling of the saints, as too many do, 
I might then be branded with the odious name of a conceited 
separatist. No, no, I prefer a day in God's courts before a 
thousand elsewhere ; but, now, when debarred from public and 
confined to my private devotions, I would make the best im- 
provement thereof I can. O that God would lift up the light 
of his countenance upon me, and shine into my soul with the 
beams of his light and love ! Help me. Lord, to perform those 
duties alone which I am accustomed to perform in public. Was 
I God's mouth to his people "^ Let me speak with his voice 
and words unto myself in heavenly soliloquies, holy meditations, 
and serious self-expostulations, examining myself about sincerity, 
spurring on myself to the practice of duties, reproving myself 
for any iniquity, and encouraging my self with scripture promises. 
Was I the people's mouth to God in prayer ? Let me pour 
out my soul in bitter complaints for sin, in serious requests for 
pardoning, sanctifying, assisting and accepting grace, and for a 
supply of all wants. As I believe the prayers of my congrega- 
tion are for me, so let my prayers be knocking at heaven's gate 
for them, that his servant may be assisted in speaking, the peo- 
ple edified in hearing, and that it may be a good day to them. 

410 LIFE or THE llEV. O. HEYWOOD. 

Did I stir up otlicrs to the duty of praise ? Let mc make 
melody in my heart to tlie I^ord and rejoice in him. Surely it 
will be no small mercy, if by, and in, and after this affliction 
my God prepare me faithful and fruitful improvement of such 
days as these, and my heart be better qualified to sanctify God's 
name in holy duties, when I shall again be brought to worship 
him in the beauty of holiness and speak to his praise in the 
great congregation ; or else bring me to sing praises to his 
name in heaven, and spend an everlasting sabbath with saints 
and angels. 

The time of affliction, O my soul, is a special season for 
self-examination. We must search and try our ways when 
God examines us by scourging. Enter therefore into thy- 
self, try thy state, and enquire the cause of God's contending 
with thee. O Lord, what was it made thee touch so sharply 
this flesh of mine ? Didst thou make my head to ache because 
my head did first devise to sin, and then contrive excuses for 
it ? Were my senses the inlets of sorrow because they were 
first the windows of sin ? Was every member of my body a 
patient in suffering, because every one was an agent in sinning.? 
Didst thou strike my flesh with trembling because I trembled 
not at thy word, nor stood in awe of thy majesty ? Didst thou 
bring sometimes an ague because I was cold in devotion, and 
sometimes a fever because I was zealous in transgression, and 
sometimes both because I was lukewarm in my profession ? 
Didst thou strike my bones and joints with torturing pains from 
head to foot, because they have been instruments of unrighteous- 
ness, so nimble for iniquity, and so inflexible to goodness ? 
Didst thou make my heart sick and faint ? Was it not for the 
many fleshly lusts that have been hatched there ':' Was not my 
stomach weak because I had no appetite for gospel food, but 
did nauseate the saving dictates of thy truth ? Was my brain 
oppressed with cloudy fears, or grown light for want of sleep ? 
It was because my soul was too much burdened with the world, 
set on vanities, and not employed about eternity. Was my 
whole body made a cage of foul diseases ? Surely the cause is 
clear, my soul was too fruitful a mother and nurse of the plague 
of the heart. Since then, my soul, the cause of this sickness is 
so evident that he that runs may read, freely accept of this 
punishment of thy sin, lay thy hand upon thy mouth, strike 
upon thy breast and say, what have I done ? Thy conscience 
will quickly answer, thou hast done that which might have un- 
done thee for ever. Never complain of thy punishment, since 
thou art alive and out of hell. 



Reflect upon thyself, O my soul, and view thy behaviour 
under God's afflicting hand. It was difficult to see a father's 
love in all the displeasure manifested, to discover a smiling 
fiice through all these frowns; yet, through grace, I had a 
glimpse by the eye of faith, beyond nature and reason, so that 
he helped me to bear my burden in some measure with patience 
and submission. Various thoughts assaulted my troubled 
breast ; sometimes I took my farewell of the earth and welcomed 
immortality with a hopeful embrace. Amidst these thoughts I 
was involved in the apostle's dilemma, not knowing which to 
choose, life or death. Sometimes I thought it was my own un- 
profitableness that deprived me of a capacity for doing God's 
service in gathering in his people, and that my sin would make 
my sun to set in the morning of my days and infancy of my 
ministry. Therefore I begged of God a few more days to 
spend them better ; but then immediately I thought this was 
flesh. Hath not God a sufficient number to do his work far 
better than I can ? Is it not best to be in my Father's house ? 
Who would plead himself out of home and rest ? Then I looked 
through another glass and earnestly desired a change, and 
Avished for death, like a kind porter, to let me into my Father's 
palace ; for what is here, thought I, but an evil world without 
and. a wicked heart within ! And what is there in heaven but 
holiness and happiness, enough to keep the souls of the blessed 
in an ecstacy to all eternity ? Thus was the desire of life 
swallowed up in the joys of which death would give me posses- 
sion. Yet I could not rest here, I was afraid lest that desire 
was too mean and slavish, making the ground of my wish to be 
freedom from my trials. In this perplexing state, because I 
felt how unfit I was to dispose of myself, I put myself into the 
hands of my gracious God desirous of submitting to his will. 
One night after tedious tossings from pain until three o'clock, I 
was assualted with a violent temptation of Satan, persuading 
me that these pains were the foretastes infernal torments, in 
which they would shortly end. I answered him with such 
passages as God furnished me out of his word, and sometimes 
I prayed God to aid me in resisting the devil, or to turn aside 
the fiery darts : this he abundantly answered. Blessed be God. 


Time was, O my soul, when thou didst fear, with Abraham, 
the heavy doom of being written childless ; but now, through 
grace, the scene is altered and thou mayest say with Jacob, 
here be the children God hath graciously given thee. I may 


say so of the fruit of my body, but more so of the travail of my 
soul ; the first is a precious mercy, but the latter is of more 
value. The conversion of one sinner saves a soul from death, 
covers a multitude of sins, and restores fallen man to circum- 
stances superior to the state of Adam. This, this, brings glory 
to God, joy to the angels, benefit to the saints, and enlargement 
to the church ; it is the fruit of the Saviour's travail with 
which he is satisfied. The glory of a prince is the multitude 
of his subjects, and thus Christ is glorified when sinners are 
converted. It is a glorious work in the hand of the worthiest 
instrument, but the wonder increases if the means be considered. 
Hadst thou been some profound scholar, or learned interpreter, 
one of a thousand, some acute Apollos, an eloqent man, mighty 
in the scriptures, it would have appeared more probable by a 
proportion of the means to the end. Or hadst thou been some 
thundering Boanerges, some zealous awakening Paul, less of 
God and more of man would have appeared in the work. But 
the Lord did single thee out to be an example of his wonderful 
and glorious work ; he chooseth weak things, yea, and things 
that are not, to bring to nought things that are, that no flesh 
should glory in his presence ; and therefore often doth great 
things by very unlikely means. The work indeed would become 
angelic spirits, what then is a babe, a worm, an earthen vessel ? 
thou art not worthy to be reckoned one of the honourable regi- 
ment of the clergy, being inferior to most in abilities, yet few 
have had thy success. How many dost thou hear make sad 
complaints how little good they do ! ]Many famous, skilful, 
and laborious servants of God, whose books thou art not worthy 
to carry after them, have spent much precious time and poured 
out many prayers and tears on behalf of men's souls, but 
have won very few if any to Christ. What troubled spirits 
have many revered ministers carried with grey hairs to the 
grave ! Surely the race is not to the swift nor the battle to 
the strong ; no, no, free grace makes choice of the word and 
person to work by, and lays aside others that we conceive more 
adapted. The reason why the Lord should work by one and 
not by another, is the same as why he loveth one person and 
not another : " Even so. Father, for so it seemeth good in thy 
sight.'"" It was not because thou wast inclined to, and designed 
for, this work from a child, nor because thy aim was upright in 
making choice of this high function ; nor because when in sick- 
ness thou didst solemnly vow to God, that if he would restore 
thee thou wouldst serve him at the altar all the days of thy 
life ; nor was it because thy dear relations did wrestle hard with 
God for thee and thy people, that the Lord would crown thy 


endeavours with abundant fruitfulness : though I do believe 
this great mercy is a wonderful return of prayer, yet none of 
these nor all of them together could have effected such a design, 
nor moved the Lord to work, had not free grace prepared our 
hearts to seek and bowed his ear to hear. Thus the Alpha 
and Omega were from him, who is the author and finisher of 
faith, and we may cry, grace, grace, to the fountain of all grace. 
My soul, make thy boast in the Lord, that the humble may 
hear thereof and be glad ; from him cometh all my salvation. 
Do thou, my soul, cast down thy crown before the throne and 
give glory and honour to him that sitteth thereon, for he is 
worthy to receive glory and praise for ever. All I fear is, lest 
I should not be thankful for, sensible of, and faithful under this 
invaluable mercy ; lest I should not improTe it ; or lest I should 
arrogate too much to myself. O my soul, beware of the tick- 
lings of pride and self-conceit ! Thou hast had woful experi- 
ence of a deceitful heart in a like case. When the Lord helps 
thee with life and power in any exercise thou art nearest to a 
snare and fall ; the devil and thy depraved heart are very busy, 
and when he cannot overturn by one extreme he drives into 
another. O, beware of these things, and remember, thou hast 
nothing which thou hast not received. Beware of thoughts aspir- 
ing above my reverend brethren, and think not better of thy- 
self than those to whom God gives little success. They may 
be more gracious, laborious, and higher in God's favour, and 
may be very useful in training up converted souls, satisfying 
the scrupulous, and comforting the dejected. God gives 
diversity of gifts and different success to those gifts : he is 
wise, gracious, and faithful in his dispensations ; admire God 
in all and despise none. Wait, my soul, on the Lord, plead 
with holy jealousy that poor converts may not look back, and 
that thou, after having wrought on others, may set not be a cast 

Hardly, O my soul, canst thou bear the sunshine of a gra- 
tifying mercy without dark obscuring clouds of trouble and 
affliction. The Lord thy God hath often honoured thee before 
all the people, and now he hath left thee to endure some dis- 
grace before them. He lately withdrew himself from thee on 
Ijis own day, less sensibly, but very discernible to thyself and 
some judicious Christians. Thou didst not make that use 
thereof which God required, and therefore yesterday he left 
thee to struggle in thy own strength, to do just nothing. 
Surely it is a thing much to be observed, and thy frame of spi- 
rit much to be lamented. O humble thyself before the Lord, 


and see vvhat thou canst make of this dispensation ! Were it 
tending only to thy personal shame and open discredit, it were 
less matter, though a due estimation of thy person may make 
way for the reception of thy message ; but the leprosy of thy 
personal faihngs may spread itself exceedingly far and bring 
forth bitter fruit. I could willingly be taken out of the way, 
be banished into some howling wilderness, rot in the grave, or 
beg my bread, rather than injure God\s cause, or open wicked 
men\s mouths. From whence came it to pass that I lost myself.'' 
"■ Tis true, the slackness of the people's coming in, occasioned 
me to change my purpose. Possibly there might have been 
some sin in my people to provoke the Lord thus to deal with 
his poor creature : they expected too much from the instrument, 
and eyed God too little ; they have been unthankful for, and un- 
fruitful under my enlargement ; or were unprepared by coming 
immediately from civil employments to divine ordinances. 
These and such like things some of them have bewailed ; but, 
() my soul, the cause is in thee m.ore than in any one else ; I am 
the Jonah that troubled the ship. What is it that God cor- 
rects in thee ? Lay thy hand upon thy heart and search out 
the cause. How often hast thou enjoyed the wonderful pre- 
sence of God ; but how little hast thou prized it ! How often 
hast thou pleased thyself with applauding thoughts, as having 
done well and deserved praise ! Has it not pleased thee more 
to have thy talents commended than the truth of God received.'* 
O base prostitution of divine favours, to gratify the vain expec- 
tations of ambition ! How much hast thou been at thy book 
and how little on thy knees ! Luther says : " Prayer, medi- 
tation, and temptation make a preacher.'' How little hast thou 
been acting faith on Jesus Christ for assistance, using means as 
if there were no God to help ! Thou hast acted as if the stu- 
dying of precious truths, and the bare committing of them 
to memory were enough to render thee fit for public services ; 
whereas, that seldom reaches the heart which does not come 
from it, and has not been wrought into it. How seldom after 
preaching dost thou get alone, water the seed of the word with 
tears, and pursue the Lord with importunity for success ! O 
my God, all these are but too true, and thou art very just ! I 
may rather wonder that I have been so often helped, than 
repine that I have now been left. I have a tliousand times less 
frequently tlian I deserve ! The glory of God is dear to him 
and he will not give his glory to another. If too much be 
attributed to the instrument, no wonder that he stain the glory 
of man and lay his honour in the dust, that God may be all 
in all. 



Prepare thyself, my soul, for the enjoyment of the important 
ordhiance of the I^ord's supper which thou hopest to enjoy tlie 
following day. Trim up thy lamp and go to God for new 
supplies of grace. Look to thy habitual and actual preparation. 
Get anointed from above with fresh and refreshing oil. Go 
and buy, or rather beg additional divine influences. Old grace 
will not serve thee for new duties. Whet the sword anew to 
slay thy lusts ; furbish thy shield of faith to repel Satan's fiery 
darts ; sharpen the anchor of hope to cast behind the veil ; 
kindle the fire of love that it may grow more fervent, and glow 
in flames of ardent affection to God and all the saints. Read 
the story of thy dear Redeemer's life and death, that thou 
mayest be furnished with abundant matter for remembrance of 
his death and passion. Look at the wormwood and the gall 
to cause thy heart to bleed in genuine repentance for thy dis- 
obedience. Examine thyself thoroughly and impartially, and 
trifle not with God in a matter of sucii importance. Search thy 
heart and life, review thy sins and graces, look to thy principles, 
and motives in these approaches to God. Thou art to renew thy 
covenant with the Lord; be not found a covenant breaker. 
Thou art to draw nigh to God in a special manner, wash thy 
hands in innocency before God's altar be approached by thee. 
Above all, awake my faith towards a crucified Saviour. Con- 
sider, O my soul, who he is that suffered, and for whom he en- 
dured so many evils : it was the innocent for the guilty ; the 
just for the unjust ; the Mighty God for weak man. He be- 
came sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of 
God in him ; the Son of God assvimed the nature of man to pay 
the price of our redemption, and be a propitiation for our sins. 
O my soul, bring all thy sins and lay them on this scape-goat ; 
bring all thy wounds to this physician ; bring all thy doubts to 
this counsellor. Come, and derive sap from this blessed vine, 
light from this glorious sun, and protection from this rock. 
What dost thou want or desire, that is not to be had in abun- 
dance here ? The streams are sweet, but what is the spring ? 
The means are good, but what is the end ? In this and all 
ordinances strive to get near Christ and have communion with 

Surely the benefit of an ordinance is not ended when the out- 
ward dispensation is concluded ; for sometimes the recollection 
is more profitable than the administration. Consider, O my 
soul, how thy heart was affected in reading the blessed insti- 
tution ! A sweet overpowering virtue descended from above : 



my beloved spoke good and heart-melting words to me. I 
thought the shadow of Christ was delightful. The elements 
were desirable not for themselves, but the marrow and mystery 
represented by them. Did Christ give his flesh for the life of 
the world, and dost thou not find, O my soul, vivifying virtue 
therein .^ Did Christ shed his blood for justification, and canst 
thou doubt of the remission of thy sins ? Hast thou expe- 
rienced the great design of the ordinance in thy heart .'' Didst 
thou find it the means of effectual conveyance of rich commu- 
nications, and comfortable e\'idence of thy regeneration affording 
thee assurance of salvation .'' Didst thou find it as bread to 
nourish and wine to refresh thy soul ? Though I had not such 
a transporting vision of a resplendent ]\Iediator as the three 
privileged ones on the mount ; yet my soul did enjoy some dis- 
coveries of a transfigured Saviour in the sacramental elements. 
O tliat they may abide on my heart for many days and weeks ! 
O my soul, be not faithless but believing ; send all thy unbe- 
lieving doubts to this Captain of thy salvation. Be ashamed, 
O thou hard, impenitent heart, and blush to think that thy dear 
Saviour should suffer thus for thy sins, and yet thou be so little 
broken and affected therewith. Cast thy eye upon the bleeding 
Jesus, and see what relenting sorrows it produces. Look on 
him whom thou hast pierced, and weep bitterly as for an only 
child. If thou shouldst ever begin to faint in thy spiritual 
race or warfare, a crumb of this delicious bread of life may 
revive tliee and make thee run wdth alacrity. If thou shouldest 
fall into a spiritual lethargy, one drop of this aqua vitcE, this 
soul-cheering and cleansing cordial, may bring thee to life again 
and make thee as the chariots of Amminadib. 


Yesterday I went prepared to preach a lecture at my own 
place, and had provided an assistant, who came and brought 
with him another dear friend of mine ; so they were both em- 
ployed and my pains spared. I cannot but take notice of this 
as a sp2cial providence, considering the circumstances attending 
the business. I had a subject which I much desired to preach 
at that lecture : Psal. cxii. 7, " He shall not be afraid of evil 
tidings." JNly mind had run very much on this text, and I had 
taken extraordinary pains with it ; had read the sermon twice 
over, which I seldom have the mind or the leisure to do. I had 
pleased myself with the thought how likely it was to be accept- 
able and profitable to the auditory, which was composed of most 
Christians in the neighbourhood. After all this, I was disap- 
pointed in the delivery, and upon the review, am persuaned it 


was a mercy to me. O my soul, hadst tliou a right end in 
view in making choice of the subject ? Was it not to display 
thy own spirit rather than the truth of God ? Lay thy hand 
upon thy heart and make a strict enquiry. Didst thou not 
study to make it fine with history, and rhetorical flourishes ? 
Consider, souls are precious and the work is weighty, requiring 
thy best and utmost provision for every sermon. Seek not credit 
from men, but study to deliver the wholesome truths of God, 
in homely, plain, though well becoming language. Seek not 
to set off" tlie glorious gospel with any device of thy own. How 
often hast thou found by sad experience that when thou hast 
most sought thyself thou hast most lost thyself.? Thou art 
bound to search out for acceptable words, and avoid a barbarous 
phraseology; yet take heed thou dost not please Satan by 
gratifying thy own and others'' luxuriant fancies, in the things 
of God. Learn of Paul to preach not with enticing words, but 
in demonstration of the Spirit. Get thy proud thoughts humbled 
before thou goest to preach, and tremble to think of preaching 
thyself when thou shouldst preach Christ ; pray more over thy 
heart and labours. Particularly examine this discourse, and 
mourn over what might have been offensive to others or danger- 
ous to thyself. 

After twenty-two years and upwards, wherein I have been 
studying, preaching, praying, and waiting on God, since I first 
began to write my soul-soliloquies, I am now pressed in spirit 
again to return to my own soul and enquire, what progress I 
have made in sanctification, communion with God, and pre- 
paration for heaven .? Come then, O my soul, how are things 
with thee ? Deal faithfully with God and thyself; do not dis- 
semble ; dodge not about spiritual matters, for the heart-search- 
ing God knows how things are ; self-flattery would be thy souFs 
ruin. True it is my soul hath contracted a heavy burden of 
guilt during this time. I have had many temptations, corrup- 
tions, fears, doubts, and discouragements, which have put my soul 
on perplexing exercises. But yet, for all that, to the praise of the 
glory of God's grace, I hope I can say, I have made some progress 
in the ways of God. I will not conceal but reckon up what testi- 
monies I can find thereof, partly to raise my spirits in praise to 
God, and partly to evidence my sincerity. I hope I do not lie 
therein but say the truth in Christ, my conscience bearing me 
witness in the Holy Ghost. 1 . My soul hath been drawn out more 
frequently to renew my covenant with the Lord my God than 
formerly, and that too in a more solemn manner, writing it down 
and subscribing it as in the presence of God. Such days have 
VOL. I. 2 E 

418 Liir: of the rev, o. heywood. 

been days of heart-breaking and heart-quickening ; blessed be 
my God. 2. God hath helped mc more constantly to main- 
tain the duty of secret prayer, and he doth more melt my heart 
by his blessed Spirit. There are but few days, when I am at 
home, but God and my soul meet in secret. 3. The Lord helps 
me to spend my time better than formerly. Through grace 
I cannot say that I am idle any one day, but can give some 
tolerable account of the expenditure of time for earth or heaven, 
in my general or particular calling. 4. As my employment has 
been increased, so I feel a renewing of strength in my heart. 
In my studies I have fresh and more profitable matter sug- 
gested to my thoughts; so that, comparing my notes now 
and formerly, I find that the Lord doth assist me. 5. I find 
my heart more zealously carried out for the good of souls, both 
in preaching and praying, in public, private, and secret ; I 
could lay myself under the feet of sinners to do them good. 
The yearnings of my bowels for sinners my God knoweth. 6. 
My heart is more endeared to saints as saints, without a factious 
respect to parties, so that I can take delight in the poorest, 
and most cross-natured and conceited child of God, wherein I 
can see any thing of Christ and goodness. 7. I find more 
power in regulating my passions, though I feel them oft work- 
ing ; yet upon pleading with God in prayer they are calmed ; 
through grace I can say, anger rests not in my bosom. 8. I 
find, by the grace of God, I can put up with injuries and af- 
fronts better than formerly, and not study revenge ; yea, my 
heart is more enabled not only to forgive, but to pray to God 
for the repentance and forgiveness of those who have done me 
the greatest wrongs ; they cost me many a tear. 9. My heart 
is grieved if God be dishonoured, his Spirit offended, and his 
gospel reproached by the sins of the wicked, or professors, or my- 
self ; and my heart is carried out many times in renewing my 
repentance on more pure and evangelical principles. 10. If I 
know I have offended any person, especially believers, it is a 
burden to my spirit, and I cannot be satisfied till I have humbled 
myself before them, with self-abasing testimonies of sincere 
grief, and solicited forgiveness from them. 11. When I have 
seen professors at a distance from each other it hath been the 
grief of my soul, and I have often interposed to make up 
breaches. Sometimes God hath granted me the desired success, 
and when it hath been otherwise God hath continued my pity 
and prayers for them. 12. The great concerns of the church 
and nation have been more upon' my heart than formerly. O 
what pleadings hath God helped me to urge for kings, nobles, 
ministers, and the interests of Christ. 13. I can rejoice mpre 


in tlie gifts, graces, and success of God's servants tliat are more 
useful than I am ; and can say, through grace, that if God will 
make use of others more than of me, I am not only satisfied but 
thankful. 14. God hath helped my soul to obtain the victory 
over the corruptions of my heart. Some lusts, that God knows 
have cost me many groans, tears, and conflicts, he hath either 
mortified or removed the occasions from me, so that sin hath not 
broken out so much as formerly. 15. My heart hath been 
more helped to undervalue the world and the things thereof, 
and to account its profits, pleasures, and honours poor and piti- 
able things of vanity ; so that I can say, through grace, the 
world dwindles and shrinks in comparison wit|i divine things, 
and is more under my feet than it hath been. 16. My soul is 
more mercifully assisted in the heavenly life of faith to commit 
all my concerns to the Lord, and to trust him for provision. 
Though my occasions of expence have increased, especially in 
training up my two sons, hitherto God hath given supplies, 
though I could not tell whence they would proceed. 17. My 
affections are sometimes more weaned from, yet endeared to, my 
relations by being more spiritualized ; so that I can now say, 
through grace, I love God in them, and them for God's sake, 
and enjoy more of God in conversing with them. 18. My soul, 
I hope, enjoys more fellowship with God, since my heart more 
closely adheres to him in duties and worship than formerly, 
and I find larger seasonable supplies, and more meltings of heart 
in public, private and secret, God giving me more frequent 
visits, and dealing more familiarly with my soul : blessed be 
his name. 19. My heart is more taken up with God's mercies, 
and more exalted in his praises, so that my soid is more melted 
and expanded in the duties of thanksgiving, both in ordinary 
duties and on special occasions. Methinks, it is a little emblem 
of heaven to be employed in God's praises. 20. The Lord hath 
graciously sealed my soul unto the day of redemption, by giv- 
ing me assurance of his love in Christ, and in vouchsafing to seal 
the remission of my sins, so that sometimes I call God my Fa- 
ther, rejoice in him as my portion, and delight my soul in the 
Lord, and in believing anticipations of the beatific vision. 

To these things I hope my heart echoes ; and though I dare 
not boast that I love Christ more than others, yet I can, through 
grace, appeal to my God that my soul doth love him in sin- 
cerity. 1 know not how soon my God may possibly leave me 
to temptation, darkness, deadness, or the commission of some 
scandalous and conscience-wasting sin ; for when I am hig-hest 
in my own conceit, I am nearest a fall. I have found by ex- 
perience that God loves to shake my carnal confidence, yet for 

2 E 2 


this I will not deny nor underrate the grace of God, nor obstruct 
his praises ; for by the grace of God I am what I am. Though 
I am vile yet my dear Lord hath been an indulgent God to me, 
and hath made good his covenant and promises to my soul ; 
and if the Lord should henceforth leave me to myself, and at 
last cast me into hell, I will justify him. O my soul, who, 
what art thou, that ever free grace should display itself before 
thee ! What hast thou but what thou hast received .'* Grace 
was at the foundation, grace has been in the progress, and grace 
will be celebrated when the top-stone is brought forth. All 
this goodness that God hath manifested, O my soul, makes thy 
sins the more aggravated. Thou art still the greatest of sin- 
ners and the least of saints. Give God all the glory, and take 
thou all the shame to thyself. As God hath dealt bountifully 
with thee, be more dutiful to him ; the more he hath given to 
thee, the more let thy expenditure be for him, and be prepared 
for his laying on thee a heavier hand than ever. 



, —*•§*»— 

Christian Reader, 

This precious pearl of seasonable advice* providentially put 
first into my hand, and now into thine, is of great worth, and the 
rate thereof is enhanced not only by the worthiness of the Au- 
thor, but by the importance of the subject matter, the manner 
of handling it, and its great end and design. The Author was 
a master in Israel, a star of the first magnitude, first placed in 

• This Address was prefixed to a posthumous publication, entitled, " Advice 
to an only Child," composed by the Rev. James Creswick, a Nonconformist 
minister ejected from Freshwater, in Hampshire. Mr. C. was a native of 
Sheffield and, we are told, a man of great abilities, well skilled in the learned 
languages, and an accurate preacher. He was distinguished for his piety and 
exemplary patience under a tormenting affliction. He used frequently to say: 
"Lord, I am thine, and thou canst do me no wrong; I would rather have 
health of soul in a body full of pain, than health and ease of body in a dis- 
tempered soul." He died Feb. 1692, aged 75, at Beal^ in Yorkshire. The 
Treatise above mentioned was published by fllr. Heywood. — Noncon. Mem. 
vol. a. p. 266. 


a high elevation, to influence candidates for the ministry and 
the academical sphere, thence translated by the ministerial 
function into an ecclesiastical station, where he was a burning 
and a shining light, till eclipsed with the rest of his ejected 
brethren, but moved very regularly and profitably in a narrower 
and obscurer orbit, till at last he disappeared to us, but shines 
bright in the firmament of glory. A description of his exquisitely 
painful disorder, (gravel) together with his invincible patience and 
magnanimity, would make a volume ; his personal excellencies 
as a scholar, as a minister, as a Christian, were beyond the vul- 
gar rate ; and it is a pity the world is not blessed with more of 
his learned labours, polished with his own hand, and squared 
by this master builder for adorning the house of God. But his 
modesty concealed something of what our zeal for public good 
hath here presented to the reader, in its naked dress, as written 
by his own hand. 

As for the matter, it is the doctrine according to godliness, 
the weighty things of law and gospel — covenanting with God, 
the life of faith, of holiness as in God's presence, actings of 
love to God and Christ, universal obedience, circumspect walk- 
ing, dying daily, repentance, delighting in God and his ways, 
thankfulness, prayer, &c. You may find in this treatise an 
excellent Encyclopaedia or universal scheme of practical divinity : 
couched in a few words, in a plain method laid before the eyes 
of the intelligent reader. 

The manner of handling this useful tractate is pleasant and 
alluring, and adds a peculiar accent and emphasis to it ; such 
a smooth style, such fit and proper similitudes, and delightful 
allusions, that it will chain the reader's eye to proceed in read- 
ing, and may perhaps charm his affections to embrace the con- 
tents thereof : "It is as apples of gold in pictures of silver," 
Prov. XXV. 11 ; that is, golden apples appearing through net- 
work of silver, or pourtrayed on silver tables, very delightful 
and grateful to the eye ; so may these words fitly spoken be to 
youth : and, " as an earring of gold and an ornament of fine 
gold," so may this wise reprover be upon an obedient ear : 
happy is the teacher who mixeth what is pleasant and useful. 

The design, I am sure, is high and noble, to plant grace in 
young persons, and to produce and feed a nursery of plants of 
renown, to stock the church and world with a springing-up ge- 
neration, in the room of old trees transplanted into a better 
soil; that may fill up vacancies and do God service in after 
times : amongst the rest of Solomons sumptuous preparations 
of costly ornaments for his pleasures, that which he mentions, 
was not the least : " I made me pools of water, to water where- 


with the wood that bririQ-eth forth trees," Eccles. ii. 6 ; this was 
an artificial means of nourishing fruit trees, in want of natural 
showers of rain from the clouds, which sometimes was rare and 
scant : and it is worth observing, that the word rendered pools, 
is the same as blessings, in Hebrew, either because in hot 
countries they were esteemed great blessings, or because they 
were filled with rain which is a valuable blessing of God. Such 
pools, as this small treatise, are signal blessings in themselves ; 
and when they are also seconded with the heavenly dew of 
divine benediction, what a wood or forest of fruit-bearing trees 
may we see flourishing within the limits of God's church ? It 
is true, men may do something, yet not all. The best human 
cultivation bends the trees but to an outward compliance; divine 
grace alone plants them in Christ, and plants grace in their 
hearts. The pupil Joash was hopeful whilst his reverend tutor 
Jehoiada instructed him, 2 Kings xii. 2 ; but after his death 
discovered the rottenness of his hypocritical heart. God will 
demonstrate a vast difterence between the efficient cause and 
the subordinate means ; therefore some miscarry under religious 
education, but some prove well, to encourage parents and mas- 
ters in their duty : divine benediction with paternal instruction 
hath done great things. Let Abraham command his children, 
God undertakes " they shall keep the way of the Lord,'' Gen. 
xviii. 19 — " The rain also filleth the pools,"" Tsal. Ixxxiv. 6. 
or, benedictionibtis amk-ietiw doctor;^ the Eternal Majesty will 
make their pools of water great blessings to men. 

Did parents conscientiously instruct their children, they would 
in God's time discern the blessed effects thereof Mr. Baxter 
thinks, religious education would be so blessed by God for con- 
version, that a public ministry would be chiefly useful for edi- 
fieation. It is true, grace comes not by succession, yet often in 
succession ; the covenant is with the godly and their seed; and 
surely it is not an insignificant cypher : as God delights to run 
along the line of the gospel covenant, so he usually blesseth his 
own institutions with gospel gi'acc : let parents do their duty, 
and leave their issue to God : our children have souls as well 
as bodies, both must be cared for, nature enjoins nurture, grace 
regulates it, God alone makes it eihcacious. Corrupt nature 
leaves children not a whit better than a wild ass's colt, Job xi. 
12 ; a habit of sinning makes them like a wild ass, used to the 
wilderness, that snuficth up the wind at her pleasure, in her 
occasion who can turn her away ? Jei*. ii. 24. Education must 
be as a guide and bridle, to teach and tame those frolicsome 
youths : but alas ! most parents cast the reins on children's 

* The instructor shall he clothed with hlcssings. 


necks, and leave them to their licentious ways, till at last they 
get the bits between their teeth, and kick off' the rider, and 
ramble in forbidden paths, till they are impounded in a prison 
here, and in the dungeon of hell hereafter. Solomon saith, 
" The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child left to himself, 
bringeth his mother to shame," Prov. xxix. 15. Is not crying 
heire better than wailing in eternal torments ? Even the hea- 
then Sefieca could say, Discvplma scvera firmat ingenia, et 
apta reddit jnagnis co7iatib7cs ; * is it not a pity such inge- 
nuous youths should be lost for want of instruction and cor- 
rection ? Let parents and governors tremble, lest the blood of 
relations should lie at their door, and both be tormented for 
wilful neglects : even heathens had great care of children's edu- 
cation, it was actionable in the law courts among the Romans 
to neglect this ; yea, if the son was profligate, the father was 
sued, since it was supposed the son's miscarriage was through 
the father's default : but that might be a mistake. Yet God 
that sees all things, and whose judgment is always according to 
truth, will commence a suit against, and condemn the careless 
parent. Lord, when will parents have as much care of their 
children's souls as bodies ? Yea, express as much tenderness 
to a child as to a brute ! You labour hard to provide for them 
food and raiment, to put them into callings, that they may live 
like men in the world ; and are their souls of no worth ? Is 
there not another world worth thinking of, and looking after ? 
Have you not many helps, the bible, catechisms, good books, 
and ministers to move, admonish, and instruct you in training 
up your children ? Do you not engage to do this for them at 
their baptism ? Could you be content to see a mastiff dog drag 
away your child to devour him, and not stir a foot, or speak a 
word to rescue him ? O miserable parents ! O cruel tigers ! 
Worse than sea-monsters, " that draw out the breasts, that give 
suck to their young ones," Lam. iv. 3 ; they have not a word to 
speak, not a breath to breathe in prayer, not a hand to reach 
out to them, to pluek them from tliis Cerberus, this dog of hell ! 
Oh, where is gTace, yea, where is nature ? The Lord pity those 
merciless parents : for shame learn your duty, and do it, and 
take this book for a help. 

And you«.that are children, if parents neglected their duty, 
do not you neglect God and your souls : they look no further 
than your preferment in the world ; but do you look after an 
everlasting happiness in the other world: some commended 
Patricius, Augustine's father, for educating his son a scholar, 
who became so famous a father in the church; "Alas !" said he, 

* Severe discipline strengthens genius, and prepiares it for great undertakings. 


*' my fiithcv thought only to make me a rhetorician, not a 
Christian, for he was a heathen." But wliatever your parents 
trained you up for, law, or physic, or a trade, study Christianity : 
if your parents were carnal, lament it, exercise faith in Christ, 
that guilt may be taken oft' from your father's house, and dou- 
ble your diligence for your own soul, and for your children. 
If your parents were pious, devoted you to God, set you a good 
example, instructed and prayed for you ; O make much of the 
covenant of parents, plead it, embrace it, and see that your 
heart and life be squared by it, else your privileges will be a 
testimony against you another day. Ambrose, bishop of Milan, 
tells us, that in the primitive times, a stole, or white garment 
was put upon the party baptized ; and the minister said, " take this 
white and immaculate vestment, and see that thou bring it forth 
without spot at the judgment seat of Christ : " withal he tells of 
one Elpidophorus being baptized, and afterwards proving a pro- 
fane wretch; the minister produced this garment, saying, " this 
linen, which is witness of thy apostacy, shall accuse thee at 
Christ's coming." You young people, esteem it a great privilege, 
that you were introduced into the visible church by baptism, and 
indeed it stands in good stead in your infant state, by virtue of 
your parents' covenant ; but being grown up, you stand upon 
your own legs, and must personally renew your baptismal co- 
venant, or expect no benefit by it. Baptism will not save you, 
without the answer of a good conscience ; the laver of regene- 
ration will not avail to adult persons, without the renewing of 
the Holy Ghost : you must be born again of water, and of the 
Spirit, or you cannot enter into the kingdom of God : to which 
Austin subscribes, saying, Nihil profuit Simoni Mago visibilis 
baptismus cui sanctificatio invisihilis desit;* you know Simon 
Magus was in the gall of bitterness, and bond of iniquity, though 
he was baptized : you are however to bless God for external 
privileges and religious education, they are signal mercies, not 
common to all. Bucholtzer thanks God that he was brought up 
under Melancthon; Mr. Whately, under Mr. Dod; yea, a Plato, 
that he was pupil to Socrates. But rest not here, be not satis- 
fied unless the unfeigned faith dwell in you also, which was in 
your pious ancestors : mind their godly examples, and do not 
counteract them. A king of Poland was wont to carry the 
picture of his renowned father on a plate of gold about his neck, 
wlien he went on any notable expedition ; kissing it, he said, 
"God grant that I may do nothing remissly, or unworthy of 
so good a father :" so be you followers of them, who through 

• Visible baptism availed nothing to Simon 3Iagiis, in whom in%asible sane- 
4ilicatiou was wanting. 


faith and patience, do now inherit the promises ; only be not 
content to be apish imitators of their outward acts, but see that 
you have the same spirit of faith, and love, and fear of God, 
the same repentance, and new obedience ; think you hear your 
dying parents charging you, (as Mr. Bolton did his children) 
that none of you presume to meet them at the great day, with- 
out a wedding-garment. To this end, attend daily on a power- 
ful ministry, examine your consciences by the word of God, 
pray much in secret, be humble and docile, disdain not to 
learn catechisms, watch against occasions of sin, and improve 
christian society ; keep a conscience void of offence towards 
God and man; read, meditate on, and labour to understand 
and practise, scripture truths and rules ; study to do all the good 
you can, and be useful in your generation. 

But I shall detain you no longer in the porch, I humbly 
desire you to read and study the following treatise, which 
though short, is yet pithy, accurate, and sententious, and will, 
like a clue, lead thee through the labyrinths and meanders of the 
world ; omit the reading of it, and thou art a loser; read it slightly, 
and thou gainest no good ; act contrary to it at thy peril, these 
sheets will rise up in judgment against thee another day. My 
earnest prayer, following this and other soul-helps, is, that the 
God of all grace would stamp his blessed image on the souls of 
the rising generation, awaken their consciences, enlighten their 
minds, renew their natures, subdue their wills, raise their affec- 
tions to heavenly objects, in order that they may fill up our 
stations when our heads are laid in the silent dust, and may see 
better days, and have better hearts, to improve all occurrences 
to better purpose, than we that are now going off the stage; and 
thus, good reader, I take leave, wishing thee much content and 
advantage in reviewing these spiritual flowers, gathered out of 
the scripture garden : as being 

Thy soul's friend, and servant in Christ, 




To Mr. Eliezer Hey wood — To the Rev. Tkos. JoUie- 
To Ralph Thm'esby^ Esq. 

The circle of Mr. Hey wood's friends and acquaintance was un- 
usually large, and his epistolary correspondence very extensive. 
Had a selection of his letters been made soon after his decease, 
probably it would have been interesting and acceptable ; but at 
this distance of time such an object cannot be secured, however 
desirable. The few that have been preserved from the ravages 
of time, are now presented to the Public. The first six letters 
in the following series, were copied from the originals by the 
Writer of Mr. Heywood's Life. For the remainder, addressed 
to Ralph Thoresby, Esq. the able and faithful historian of 
Leeds, the Public are indebted to W. Upcott, Esa. of the 
London Institution, and gi'ateful acknowledgments are due for 
his liberality and kindness in permitting copies to be taken 
from the originals in his possession. The Editor of Mr. Hey- 
wood's Works, is also, in this place, desirous of acknowledging 
his numerous obligations to his worthy and highly esteemed 
Friend, the Rev. Isaac Mann, A. M. minister of the Baptist 
chapel. Maze Pond, London, not only for procuring copies of 
the last mentioned letters, but also for his valuable assistance, 
afforded con amove throughout the progress of this publication. 



My Dear Son, 

It is now towards a fortnight, since I wrote to you 
and desired an answer, whether you could supply for me when 
I go into Lancashire, May 21st. I should be glad to have 
your company thither about the 15th, or 16th of May, and so 
come back that week to my house, because you can ride better 


than I. I desired you would send my manuscript to Mr. Tay- 
lor with all speed you can. I had a letter from him, telling 
me if it come not shortly it will be too late, they will be gone 
into the country. I had another letter from Mr. Parkhurst, 
who is willing to print it,* only would see it first. I have a 
lovely company of liopefvd young men, with whom I was yester- 
day, and preached to them. You are upon our hearts for per- 
sonal concerns and ministerial. Your age calls for settlement 
in the world ; I am full of cares for you. Our svipper day is 
Lord's day sevennight, the fast is the Wednesday after. I shall 
be glad of your company and assistance any time. You are both 
dear to me. My love and service to Mr. and Madam Taylor, 
Your endeared father, 


April 25th, 1693. The very day of ) 
my marriage to your mother, A.D. 1655, >• 
38 years ago, called St. Blark's day. j 



My Dear Child, March 16th, 1697. 

I received your letter this day sevennight and am glad 
m^ine is acceptable to you, I pray it may be profitable ; you are 
much upon my heart. Yesterday, (which was the day of my 
baptism sixty-seven years ago,) I spent the forenoon in secret 
and solemn addresses to my dear Lord, and had sweet enlarge- 
ment and great encouragement concerning my own soul, sons, 
and the church ; and as I have great comfort in you, so you 
may conclude I shall do any thing in the compass of my power 
for you. I think I shall leave you (after mine and my wife''s 
death,) as much as your brother, through the blessing of God ; 
though your two grandfathers entailed all upon my eldest son 
at my first marriage. When I have accomplished this bargain,-f- 
I shall cancel what in Little Lever your brother made to you. 
I need not remove to greater places for worldly incomes, I have 
as much as I desire, more than 1 expected, and contrary to 
what I have deserved ; let mine and others learn to trust God 
in the way of duty, by my example. God hath given me an 
agreeable wife, a pleasant habitation, a competent income, an 
affectionate people, health of body, and a contented mind. O 

* Probably his work entitled, The Best Entail, 
■f Purchasing a small estate in Holdsworth. 


who am I that he hath brought me hitherto ! J. P. is my 
faithful, prudent friend, and compensates the loss of his father, 
once kind, now a stranger, still a hearer and free contributer. 
I have learned Micah vii. 5. My humble service to Mr. and 
Madam Taylor, whom I include in my poor devotions, and 
bless God for their exceeding usefulness and tenderness towards 
you. Do not doubt their future care of you, which will be re- 
compensed into their own bosoms and their lovely daughter's, 
whom I hope God will bless and well dispose of — she remembers 
our tantivy to Ferry Bridge. I long to come to Walling Wells 
once again while I live, but know not when, or how that can be. 
Methinks I earnestly desire your return, and long to see you. I 
am sorry Mr. Westby gives up house. Mr. Isaac Bates was 
here last week, and tells me sad stories which afflict me. He hopes 
you will do something for him ; if you can get him a place I 
think you will not be discredited by him. Give my service to 
Mr. White ; I hope the executors of Lord Wharton will make 
something of it in time. My poor neighbours Stocks are not 
fully paid for building Halifax chapel ; they that should be 
active are slack and selfish. Hithei-to they have lived upon 
gift-preaching : I was there the other Lord's day, but resolve 
to keep at home. I think by this, my little kinsman is gone to 
Mr. Frankland's. I have prefixed an epistle to a piece of Mr. 
Frankland's against Socinians ; Francis Bentley will get it 
printed. I am to preach a funeral sermon for little John Simp- 
son to-morrow at Warley ; every day produceth new work. 
Young Josiah Stansfield is gone up again to London, and is in 
danger of losing ^^500. by two merchants gone off, pray inquire 
for him.* Money is scant, trading bad, people are breaking 
weekly, assessments heavy, poverty comes like an armed man ; 
it is a wonder the country is quiet. God rules the raging sea 
and the tumult of the people. Buy but six oranges and six 
lemons since they are so dear, and send by Holmes at the 
White Horse in Cripplegate, who comes next week, or Kershaw 
at the Bell in Wood Street. Be sure you mention not me, but 
direct what you send only to the shop of Jonathan Priestley, 
Jun. in HaUfax. I hope Miss Archer, (to whom give my ser- 
vice) will not forget poor Mercy and her children ; I have one 
to pay for at our school. I am glad you are so well employed, 
I leave my charges on you. Give my service to Mr. Burgess, 
and to INIr. Vincent when you see him. We are working for a 
Master that gives good vales, and will pay well at last. I tire 
you, pardon the excrescences of my love. This is all from 

. Your endeared father, OL. HEYWOOD. 

• 3Ir. Eliezer Heywood was in London at this time with Mr. Taylor's family. 




My Dear Child, March Uth, 1101 . 

I received yours dated Marcli 8th, upon Tuesday, 
March 11th, and was greatly rejoiced with the contents of it, 
that God hath so graciously answered prayer, and brought your 
wife through her straits so mercifully, and brought a living, per- 
fect child into the world, a third O. H. ; the first was dead be- 
fore I was born, but a gracious and now glorified saint. Your 
son was born about the time of the year I came into the world, 
for I was baptized Marcli 15th, 1629, and guess my birth was 
about a week before. I was helped on Wednesday forenoon to 
pay vows, dedicate you and yours to God, and hope he may 
bear up God's name as well as mine in the world and church. 
God Almighty write a law of thankfulness on all our hearts ! 
My sweet daughter knows something of the pangs of natural 
birth, may she know the sharp throes of one spiritual, then she 
is safe for eternity ! My wife and I sympathize in griefs and 
joys, quasi pectora copulata. I bless God we are in tolerable 
health, shortwindedness in walking is all my malady, I can 
study as long and preach as loud as formerly. The public na- 
tional fast will be on Friday, April 4th. My wife is too care- 
ful of me, and would have me to get some assistance that day. 
I know none I can procure except you be at liberty that day ; 
since you are Individuum vagum, if not engaged and can leave 
your wife, your help will be very acceptable. Pray send me 
word in time whether you can come. This is a snowy morning 
and I confess summer is not come ; use your liberty, I hope I 
can make shift, God assisting. I am glad you are sensible of 
an untoward heart; it is my disease and the chief spiritual 
malady I am pestered with. I am writing a treatise on Christ's 
Intercession, that is our cure, let us learn to trust in him. My 
dear love to your father and mother Rotheram ; I am deeply 
obliged to them for their tender care of mine and their own. 
I am sorry Mr. White is so indisposed and his lady ; we think 
of them. Pray if you see old Mr. White, give my service to 
him, and know the result of my letter to him which he sent to 
London. Thank Madam Taylor for chocolate. I doubt not 
but you are dissettled and uneasy till you get to your own 
house ; so am I till I get home to the rest above. God enable 
us to serve our generation according to his will ! I received 
a letter from your brother with yours on Tuesday night which 


heightened my joy, tliat I have two sons hopeful Christians 
and laborious ministers ; it is more to mc than if you were 
princes, my heart is comforted in you whilst 

I remain, 

Your loving father, 




My dear Child, June 13th, 1701. 

I received your letter from Pontefract, dated May 
f26th, and was glad of your safe arrival at your own house. It 
is a mercy you have a centre after your various circumferences ; 
but your best centre is above, you must pitch your anchor with- 
in the vail, Heb. vi. 19- When we think to settle ourselves 
we are nearest dissettlement in this world. God hath already 
shaken out a lovely branch of your new created family, the first 
breach in mine for the last forty years. This is to train you 
up under the cross, a wholesome lesson to keep you humble, 
watchful, weaned from temporal things, and engage you more 
to spiritual. My friends and relations praying with me and 
for me, is the greatest kindness they can do me. I am in 
tolerable circumstances ; my asthmatic fits afflict me, and con- 
stant shortness of breathing, but I am studying sound, preach- 
ing sound, thovigh not walking nor riding sound. IVIy last 
and best journey will be to the up-hill city, where I long to be, 
but am content to tarry God's time and do his work. O for 
success ! My wife is in tolerable plight, blessed be God ! and 
our neighbours, in whom I have much content. Old Mr. John- 
son was here yesterday, and wants some help to pay debts. 
What cause have I to admire divine providence to me and 
mine, and I hope, divine grace ! I expect your brother daily to 
take a journey into Lancashire. Have you spoken to your 
brother, and appointed a time for an exercise here ? Mr. Water- 
house was with us at the Lord's supper last Lord's day, and 
preached in the afternoon, but his voice is below us ; he left 
me a MS. concerning justification. Enoch Halstead is at last 
come from Edinburgh, I doubt not much better. Mr. Noble 
thinks of printing his other piece upon the Apocalypse ; but 
nullus sum in propheiicis, etpuer in dogma ticis, et nolens in 


polemicls, sed miens hi practicis ; seiicctute jam gravidua.^ 
My dear child, love God above all earthly enjoyments and re- 
lations. Give up yourself to God, maintain frequent com- 
munion with him, struggle hard with a bad heart, own grace 
in all, aim at perfection, and God grant we may meet in glory 
at last. My dear love with my wife's to you and our dear 

Your endeared father, 




Reverend and dear Brother, Oct. ^Ust. 1698. 

My two sons came to me the other week, and brought 
me your book on the Surry Demoniac from your son, as a 
token from yovirself, for which I do here give you my hearty 
thanks, and likewise for your kind letters sent to me, which 
further endear my heart to you in friendship, which first com- 
menced at Cambridge, where you were pleased to take notice of, 
and take into your society, such a simple, raw lad as O. H. I 
oft reflect, with comfort and gratitude, on the sweet opportimities 
we had in your garret-chamber, and the heart-meltings under 
Mr. Hammond's ministry, with whom I conversed, a fortnight 
before he died at Hackney, whom we shall never see more in 
this world ; and truly I despair of ever seeing you on earth, but 
hope erelong to meet you in heaven, in the general assembly 
above. I have not been a little both pleased and profited in 
writing a small treatise upon 2 Thess. ii. 1, which I have de- 
livered to my son for the press, and if it come out will send you 
a copy. Next to meeting our dear Lord, this cheers me, that 
we shall meet with our godly friends with better hearts, in a 
better place and posture. In the meantime, there is a commu- 
nion of saints, if not local yet real : we meet at the throne of 
grace, conversing with our God, and thereby sending to each 
other by the road of heaven ; yet these paper messages are not 
insignificant. Your book (one would think) gives Z. T. his 
death-blow, at least shuts his mouth. Your answers and argu- 
ments are so cogent and pungent, your proofs and depositions 

* I am no adept in prophecies, a child in doctrinal discussions, and indisposed 
to controversy, but at home in things of a practical nature ; being now bur- 
dened with old age. 

•f- See another letter to Mr. Jollie, vol. iv. page 507- 


so obvious and pertinent, except he find sometliing further to say 

from Mr. Carrington I could have wished that something 

had been forborne in his practice and your writing ; but God 
will turn all to the best, when the devil and his agents have 
done their worst. I have received a long letter from Mr. Stret- 
ton, and am glad that Mr. Forbes of Gloucester and yourself 
have accepted a call to carry on the correspondence. I have 
written a large account of 19 congregations in our parts, but 
whether we can maintain quarterly correspondence in our large 
county, or send up delegates to London, I yet know not ; I 
think letters may do. It is fit we do any thing we can, to pro- 
pagate the gospel and reformation, yea, and union, though, alas, 
we can do little, to cool or qualify the heats in the great metro- 
polis which bode ill to the land : of old, British contests 
brought on Saxon conquests. Alas, that good men should mis- 
construe and mistake each other! Tantcene animis coelestihus 
irce ! * Will there be anger or shame at ourselves for it in hea- 
ven ? Methinks Gen. xiii. 7, 8. should shame or silence us. 
But you and I have well agreed, and hope shall agree to the 
end and in the end. You are the only brother in this world of 

the old stock, left to 

Your worthless brother. 

Groaning for an exit, 




Reverend and dear Brother, Dec. 21, 1700. 

I received yours dated Nov. 6, and immediately 
transcribed and sent it to Mr. Whitaker and Mr. Dawson, ac- 
cording to your order, got their hands, and this week received 
it from your and my dear son in the gospel at AtterclifFe, with 
a very affectionate letter to me whom he owns as his spiritual 
father. Blessed be God for the grace of God in him, and his 
singular usefulness in the church. We had sweet converse to- 
gether in his last return from you, when he spent a Lord's day 
with us. -f- They all approve of the expedient for the present. 
I spoke to Mr. Priestley this week at my house, desired his 
hand, and showed him your letter ; but he excused himself be- 
ing a junior, and said it was fitter for senior ministers. I can- 
* Can such resentment occupy celestial minds ? •)• See Page 315. 


liot but follow it with my wishes and prayers, that at last tlie 
Lord wovild compose the spirits of my ancient friends in Craven. 
We have another breach made in our parts, by Mr. Mattliew 
Smith's preaching and printing a book against the imputation 
of Christ's righteousness for justification ; that ariiciUus stan- 
fis aut cadeiitis ecc/esiw, as Luther calls it. I am much con- 
cerned about it, because it diverts people from the main practi- 
cal things to endless disputes, besides the perniciousness of his 
doctrine. I have charity for him, though some have not, and 
others admire him. I bless the Lord we have peace amongst 
our people. I have a gracious companion, hopeful sons, now 
both married and comfortably settled, my body much at ease, 
no violent pain, but coughing and short-windedness, yet capable 
of preaching in my own chapel, but stir little abroad. I often 
reflect on the sweet days we have had together in God's imme- 
diate presence. It grieves me to hear of your painful disease, 
and desire to be a sympathizer with you, and a pleader with 
God for you, though I doubt not but you receive that divine 
consolation which surmounts and drowns your bodily pains. 
Dear brother, when you are near the throne remember me, who 
have no outward affliction compared to a bad heart and too, too 
much distance from that God who is my life, and with whom I 
long to be, and would be making haste, having arrived at the 
age of man. 

Your ancient endeared brother in the Lord, 




Honoured and dear Sir, Nov. 26, 1694. 

Yours of Nov. 13. I received last Tuesday, and have 
sent yours inclosed in a letter to Mr. Newcome with whom I 
have some intercourse, and have re-enforced your motions to the 
best advantage I could, though I am heartily sorry for what my 
son John told me last Thursday night, that my Lady Wilbra- 
ham, where good Mr. Illingworth was last, had told him she 
must take another Nonconformist minister and his wife into her 
house, and had no occasion for two chaplains, and desired Mr. 
Illingworth to provide for himself, which some think he laid 
so to heart that it shortened his days. I do question into 
whose hands his books and papers are fallen, but if they can be 
VOL. L 2 F 


retrieved, you sliall have them. I hear nothing yet of my bro- 
ther's hfe, yet had a letter on Saturday from my younger son at 
London. I ordered him to go to Dr. Sampson about it, from 
whom I have the contents of a curious MS. in 26 chapters, con- 
taining the history of Nonconformity or Puritanism from the 
davs of Henry VIII. to this day. If you have not seen it, I 
will send it you, and beg your encouragement in his printing it. 
I now bethink myself that you have not seen it, therefore I here 
send you Dr. Sampson's letter and draught, desiring your return 
of it after perusal. I have sent you Mr. Frankland's letter to 
me after long search, and a catalogue of my poor weak labours. 
I have done little concerning Mr. Sharp. You were mention- 
ing a MS. of his upon Psalm xciv. 19 ; I long to see it, and 
wish its printing. Mrs. Sharp saith, Mr. Hickson hath it. 
Pray get it, and send it. I will promote it what I can. I 
have lately written a Treatise on a Scriptural Fast, being de- 
sired to do it. IVIy son John hath it. If I have any encou- 
ragement, shall send it to the press. As for Mr. Stretton, my 
son hath had some letters from him. He complains that the 
shoemakers (I think) have taken their Hall from him, which was 
his Meeting-place, so he is destitute, hath been quite out of em- 
ploy five or six Sabbaths, and he thinks he shall have none ex- 
cept he build one himself, for the people take no care. I am 
glad you are so well fitted with Mr. Manlove : pray give my dear 
love to him. My son John hath a motion to Pontefract. I 
know not what to advise. He is now married, and likely to 
remove from Ravenfield. I expect him and his wife to be with 
me this week. My dear love and service, with my wife's, to 
your wife, mother, brother, sister, &c. from 

Your cordial friend, ready in all things to serve yours, 


These for his worthy and much liononrerl j 
friend Mr. Ralph Th(>resl)y, at; his house in v 
Leeds. j 



Worthy and dear Sir, Nov. 25, 1695. 

I received your letter of Oct. 8, some time after its 
dating at Mr. Hough's, and that rich treasury of papers, which 

* Appended to this letter, is a List of Mr. Hey^vood's Works in Mr. Thores- 
bv's handwriting, the same as is given in the Edition now presented to the 
Public, in which is included the " Life of the Rev. Nathaniel Hej'wood," as 
Mr. O. Heywood's own production. 


you were pleased to favour and honour me with, of worthy Dr. 
Sampson's : and my daily pressing occasions have compelled me 
to detain them longer than I was willing, but now send them 
back to you by J. Baxter after perusal, and am glad the Dr. 
proceeds in his resolution to print so incomparable a work. Mr. 
Keyner's is well done, and that little of Mr. Bowles's I believe 
to be true, but I question whether it be convenient to descend 
to the particulars of diary. I had got something out, of my 
reverend father Angler's, which the London ministers expunged. 
I can say little of Mr. Ward : I spoke to Dr. Cotton, but he 
doth nothing : nor of Mr. Newcome. As for Mr. Sharp and 
Mr. lUingworth, your intelligence transcends mine. All I can 
say is in my MS. of Mr. Sharp's funeral sermon, in Mr. Jollie's 
hands. I am reading his Treatise on Psalm xciv. 19- If I 
can retrieve any thing of Mr. John Leaver, Mr. Roger Bald- 
win, Mr. Henry Pendlebury, worthy yovir acceptance, I shall 
communicate it to you, that you may hand it to Dr. Sampson, 
to whom give my humble service when you write to him. I am 
glad you are so well employed, and do humbly present this 
small Treatise of a New Creature to you, hoping for your can- 
did acceptance and furtherance of its sale by John Whitworth. 
My cordial love and service to your dear wife and mother-in- 
law ; from 

Your servant in the Lord, 

These for Mr. R. Thoresby, > OL. HEY WOOD, 

at his house in Leeds. \ 



Honoured Sir, March 2nd, 1696. 

Your kind letter I received by the hands of J. Baxter, 
and thank you for the intelligence therein contained. But I 
suppose the Parliament will find other work to do now than 
to pick quarrels. My son in London has sent me a full account 
of this helKsh confederacy, and I may truly call it devilish con- 
spiracy which will be such a divertisement as to beget an employ- 
ment, if they know their own and the nation's interest. But 
my son at London signifies, there are eighty of them will not 
join in association for the king ; some whereof are Yorkshire 
blades, but doth not think fit to name them. It is astonishing 
to find so many Jacobites. Tuesday morning, closet prayers 
have already produced good success. I am no politician, but a 

2 F 2 


poor petitioner at the throne of grace. The Lord reignetli let 
tlie earth rejoice ! God has graciously prevented the plot, for 
which I hope a day of public thanksgiving will be appointed. 
God's ministers and people had agreed to devote every Tuesday 
morning, an hour to secret prayer, as foreseeing this by divine 
instinct some months before, and all men see the open answer. 
Let us bless our prayer-hearing, all-seeing, wonder-working 
God, and act answerably. I could wish Mr. Manlove may re- 
member his promise to me, for a meeting of ministers at Mill- 
hiU in convenient time. My love to you and yours, I am in 
haste, Your real friend, 




Dear Sir, July 19^A, 1697. 

I received the papers you sent me by J. Baxter, and 
heartily thank you, that I am yet within the lines of communi- 
cation ; for though Dr. Sampson do not write his letters to me, 
but to you, (because he thinks you are more able to be at charges) 
yet I have the benefit of them, but am sorry for the death of so 
many good men. As to what Mr. Stretton writes in your case, 
(I had a letter from him on another account last week,) I can 
say little, not understanding what oaths are requisites for alder- 
manship, but I have so much charity for you, that I presume 
you will do nothing, but what you have good warrant to judge 
lawful, yet I must caution you, (as I love you) to consult pious 
christian friends — take God's word for your rule — pray devoutly 
to God — renounce sinister ends — and design vdtimately the 
glory of God, and you shall see God will lead you in the way 
that you should choose. Walk close with God, maintain 
daily communion with him and a sense of his omnipresence, 
and mortify affections to the world's triangular baits. I confess 
your parts and piety may both fit you for, and render you use- 
ful in a more public station, and I shall be glad to hear of your 
fair entrance on, and faithful management of such a degree, but 
high places are tickle, et magistratus virum indicat. The 
wise God direct you when such a case falls out, and I judge 
myself bound to put you among the clients I am advocate for 
at the throne of grace. But our Lord Jesus is chief advocate 
in the court of heaven, retain him, and you will not miscarry. 


I make bold to enclose these few lines by you to Dr. Sampson, 
and commit you to the protection of the Almighty, with hearty 
love, and my wife's to you, resting, 

Your obliged friend, 




Dear Sir, Aug. 9th, 1697. 

I am ashamed that I have not returned to you the 
enclosed before this ; having been abroad and busy the two last 
Mondays, I forgot to write by J. B. till it was too late, for 
which I crave pardon. I now return it with thanks, and oft 
think of Dr. Sampson, though I know him not : it would satis- 
fy my curiosity to know how many meeting-houses there are in 
London, and also in England. I would contribute what I know, 
if the Doctor would do something. It would greatly tend to 
God*s glory, in raising up such a number of young men as would 
supply the breaches made. If you be alderman and mayor of 
Leeds, I hope you will not forsake your old friends, or forget 
that concern you have espoused. I am not able to advise, but 
be sure you keep faith and a good conscience — act by scripture 
rule — walk uprightly — maintain communion with God and his 
people — and aim at God's glory ; and God Almighty bless you 

and yours 

So prays your obliged friend, 




Dear Sir, Jpril 9, 1698. 

Yours I received some time ago Pray, sir, 

give ray service to Mr. Manlove; tell him I have redoubled 
solicitations from Mr. Frankland to put us on, in Yorkshire, in 
addressing the king ; I have written to Mr. Whitaker, but al~ 


turn silentium. I am willing, but cannot travel. My dear love 
to you and yours. P'rom 

Your cordial friend, 


P. S. I am mightily pleased with Mr. Manlove's book on the 
Immortality of the Soul ,• pray give my service and thanks to 
him. I am sure you have a great blessing in so worthy a man. 



Dear Sir, Jan. 8, 1699. 

I am now in a capacity to perform my promise, ha\nng 
last week received a parcel of the books from Mr. Parkhurst, 
and send you one as a token of my affectionate respects to you. 
I hope you received my brother's life, which I sent you, and if in 
any thing else I be able to please or pleasure yours, you shall 
command me. I have not found the letters you desired. Pray 
give me notice, if you can, whether Dr. Sampson will print the 
History of Puritanism. I want time to enlarge, only give my 
dear love and service, with my wife's, to your wife, — 

Resting your obliged friend. 




Dear Sir, Feb. 5th, 1699- 

I had notice by brother Baxter, that a leaf was want- 
ing in Dr. Sampson"'s book ; I know nothing of it. I have en- 
quired of Mr. Priestley to whom I lent it, and to his father, and 
his brother Nathaniel. They remember there was a leaf loose, 
but think none was lost in their hands. Sir, I am busy with 
some lives of ministers, late of Yorkshire and Lancashire, but 
am hindered by other occasions, but hope within this fortnight 
or three weeks to send them. I want some help about Mr. 
Cornelius Todd, where he was minister when he died. Mr. 
Abrm. Sharp hath had his, brother's book and memoirs to tran- 


scribe two months ; hasten him. My soul desires your best 
good. With service to you and yours, 

Your observant friend, 




Dear Sir, Feb. ^^tk, 1699. 

I have taken som.e pains, (more pleasure) in tran- 
scribing the lives of these worthy men. I know I am defective 
in giving a full account of them, but hope these short hints 
will perpetuate their memory. You may please to adopt what 
you think fit, and transmit them to Dr. Sampson, who I hope 
will make haste to print his history. Some draughts of Mr. 
Frankland's life are designed to be printed with his funeral ser- 
mon, preached by Mr. Charlton ; I have helped what I can, yet 
doubt nothing worthy of him, he having left us no memoirs 
under his hand. You know Mr. Sharp better than I. I sent 
his treatise long since to his brother to transcribe, but I per- 
ceive he makes no haste. I have enquired of the fate of Dr. 
Sampson's book, but can hear nothing of it. I am for sending 
two young men to Mr. Manlove next week. One is a nephew 
of mine, very hopeful, must follow them with my prayers. 
When you write to the Dr. give my service to him. Mine, 
and my wife's to you and yours, from 

Your willing servant, 




Dear Sir, Oct. 2nd, 1699. 

I received yours, and thank you for your kind invita- 
tion, but I am almost superannuated for distant journeys. 
Most of my work lies in my study, pulpit, or about home. I 
am concerned much for a fit man for INlill-hill, and hope you 
put to your helping hand, and hope your heart is there though 


your body be not always present with tliem. I cannot forget 
you, for your dear father's sake, and your own, to whom I am 
so much indebted, and endeared. Be sure you keep close to 
God in spirit, wherein much of the life of religion consists. 

I have this day made myself busy in transcribing these two 
lives. Short memoirs are most proper, else I could have en- 
larged. Pray when you write to Dr. Sampson, give my service 
to him, tell him I doubt his book will not antedate his death, 
except he make haste. I long, long for it. My dear love with 
my wife's to you and yours, 

Your assured friend, 




Dear Sir, Dec. Wth, 1699. 

I had intelligence that after the All-wise God had 
thought fit to lay his afflicting hand upon yourself, and second, 
and had graciously removed it from you, it pleased the Lord to 
renew his witness against you and laid his afflicting hand upon 
your children, and as I was informed plucked two out of your 
bosom. I was much troubled at the tidings, having felt the experi- 
ment of rending such members from my own body. I hope God 
supports you and your dear companion. Yet that must not be all, 
but a sanctified use of the hand of God is necessary, which con- 
sists in, 1 . Reflecting on what we have done amiss, or been 
short in our duty to God and men : and then, 2. Importunately 
begging a pardon sealed to our consciences in the blood of 
Christ. 3. Renewing our covenant of better obedience, and 
more close walking with God in christian exercises, and in the 
communion of saints. And, 4. A heart more mortified to 
things below, elevation of our spirits to divine objects, prepara- 
tory for death and eternity. Dear sir, I think I did send you 
the short memoirs of Mr. Hawden's life ; if you have any thing 
considerable from J\Ir. Sampson on Mr. Stretton, pray communi- 
cate it, as I shall freely do to you what is worth my writing or 
worthy your reading. I wish I were in a capacity to visit 
Leeds, but I am prevented from travelling, being so exceedingly 
shortwinded that I have much ado to get up stairs ; being 
superannuated, I must confine myself to my study and pulpit 
till laid in the dust, and am longing for celestial views, having 


had my glut of days, travels, and difficulties in this lower world. 
I desire your prayers for me and mine ; my dear love to you 
and yours, 

Your cordial friend and servant, 




Dear Sir, Jan. 18th, 1702. 

I received your letter, whereby 1 perceive you have 
been at our metropolis, and conversed with the grandees for 
nobility and learning, who I doubt not have greatly added to 
your soaring and profoundly searching speculations, which 
possibly are edifying to you, but not much to me ; though de- 
lightful to know om7ie scihile, as it is said of Jerome. Your 
acquaintance with great personages I do not envy ; I read what 
you write, but to me, one hour's communion with God, and my 
improving my poor talent to gain souls for Christ, is all. I thank 
you for Mr. J. Calvert's life, it came seasonably ; for I was send- 
ing up to Mr. Calamy the Yorkshire and Lancashire ministers'* 
lives to be appended to a book he prints of Mr. Baxter's life, 
connected with the rest of the Nonconformist ministers in Eng- 
land, all which I got copied out of my MSS. for I perceive Dr. 
Sampson has committed his lives and papers to Mr. Tong of 
Coventry, who lets them lie by him, and frames not to arrange 
them. This book is in the press, and will be out shortly, and 
this life of Mr. Calvert came but just in season, which I have 
sent up last Tuesday by the carrier. I got the same hand 
which copied out the former, to transcribe these, which I now 
send by J. B. for I suppose you have not seen them, because 
their deaths were of a later date. Mr. Baldwin, Mr. Pendlebury , 
Mr. Newcome, Mr. Seddon, all ancient, eminent ministers dead 
in one years time, which made a great breach in that Salford 
hundred. God Almighty fit us for that hour, that we may be 
followers of them that, through faith and patience, inherit the 
promises. My dear love, with my wife's to you and yours, ends 
this trouble from 

Your cordial friend, 





Dear Sir, June 1701. 

I must confess my fault, and crave pardon for not 
answering your last letter some weeks ago. My multiplicity of 
business, and multitudes of letters received and answered, if 
known to you, would plead for me. I am satisfied about my 
son Jolin''s allowance ; he has been here since. I have not yet 
found the lost letters. I suppose we shall hear in a little time of 
Mr. Tong's making something of Dr. Sampson's papers. Good 
sir, study the word of God, gospel mysteries, and the treachery 
of your own heart ; maintain secret communion with God, and 
close fellowship and profitable improvement of communion with 
saints. My dear love with my wife's, to you and yours, from 

Your obliged friend, 




Dear Sir, 

I received the money you remitted by Mr. Reyner's 
son, and thankfully return you the receipts as you desire. AVe 
have not yet had time to look over dear father's MSS. and 
bundles of letters, so cannot furnish you with any valuable 
autographs, but when we do, assure yourself, I shall not be un- 
mindful of obligations and promises. I am doing what I can 
to forward my father's life, but necessary and unavoidable oc- 
casions retard, nor do I find it so easy to do it to purpose, as 
at first sight it might seem to be. I forwarded yours to Mr. 
Croister, and now offer sincerest service to your good lady, 

I am, Sir, 

Yours to my power, 

Sept, 2m, 1703. JOHN HEYWOOD. 




Dear Sir, 

I thailkfuUy received both what you sent to me, and 
your kind letter. I am indeed a poor crippled prisoner, hav- 
ing by a fall dislocated the cap of my right knee ; whereby I 
am laid aside as a vessel in which God has no pleasure, and of 
no use, which is very afflictive, though I hope but for a season, 
and the believing prayers of you and christian friends may for- 
ward a cure. My present lameness, (being confined to my bed) 
and severe indisposition under which I have laboured all this 
winter, have very much taken me off my design of finishing 
dear father's life. The hopes of obtaining any of Q. E's. auto- 
graphs, I doubt are quite vanished, the opportunity being irre- 
trievably lost. However mine, and my wife's sincere dues to 
you and yours concluding this from, Sir, 

Your afflicted servant, 

April 2rd, 1704. J. HEYWOOD. 




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Dedicated to the Right Honourable Hugh, Lord Willoughhy, 
by Sir H. Ashhurst, Bart. 






D. BROWN, ST. Andrew's street, 




To the Right Honourable Hugh^ Lord WillougJihy, Baron 
of Parham. 

My Lord, 

I TAKE the liberty to dedicate to your Lordship, some Memoirs 
of the life of an excellent person, who was your countryman, 
and one for whom your Lordship had a just esteem. It is 
not to recommend to your Lordship any party of men among 
us, but plain Christianity in legible and lively characters ; and 
to remove a common objection against the most excellent pre- 
cepts of our blessed Saviour, that they are hard sayings, and 
impracticable things. Here in a very plain manner is presented 
to your view, a minister of Jesus Christ, who had no other 
design in the world, but that of doing good to mankind, and is 
now partaking of the eternal joy of his Lord and Master, to 
whom he was so entirely devoted. It is your Lordship"'s quality, 
and ancient, and noble extraction that sets you above the com- 
mon level of mankind, and draws the eyes of the world upon 
you ; but there is somewhat greater, your exemplary piety and 
zeal for our holy religion, (in such a degenerate and licentious 
age,) and the countenance you give to serious piety, wherever you 
find it among all the different parties into which we are so un- 
happily broken, that makes you the ornament of your country, 
and highly esteemed by wise and good men, and obliges me to 
be with all imaginable respect, 

My Lord, 

Your Lordship's most humble 

' And faithful servant, 




X HE great God is clearly seen in the smallest things ; a poor 
sparrow lighting on the earth, and a minute hair of men's heads, 
are regarded by the Omnipotent Providence. How much 
more doth the glorious Jehovah order the affairs of the children 
of men, and most of all the concerns of his church which is the 
sanctum sanctoi'um, the inmost circle of divine Providence ? 
It is congruous to the church's state in this world to be militant ; 
a lilly among thorns ; her husband was a man of sorrows, and 
it becomes not his bride to be a wife of pleasures. If the head 
was crowned with thorns, the members must not think much to 
be conformable ; * if they do these things to the green tree, 
what will they do to the dry .'* Nay, it is necessary and salutary 
for this body to be purged ; this herb grows best when most 
trodden down ; these vessels are brightest when most scoured. 
There is great need that God's children should be in heaviness, 
to poise their spirits, and prevent sensual indvdgence. The 
vine must be lopt or it will grow wild ; corn-bearing fields must 
be broken up. Afflictions never do the church hurt, but pros- 
perity often lulls and rocks it asleep to its great prejudice, if 
not its utter subversion. Ministers usually stand in the front and 
are put upon the hottest service ; the fire is continually burning 
on the brazen altar ; the priests of old must first enter Jordan, 
and be the last standing in the midst thereof. -f- Satan's malice 
is most levelled at them, and God usually furnishes them with 
more magnanimity than others. He that still governs the world 
with infinite wisdom, hath appointed to the sons of men their 
pecuhar office, station, and employment in the world, and qualifies 
them with gifts proportionably ; he manageth their work for them, 
" Non oportet membra deliciari sub capite spinis coronato. + Josh. iii. 8 — 17- 

]?REFACE. 449 

prospereth their undertakings, accepteth their faithful service, 
and will give them abundant recompence ; yea, their work is 
their wages ; it comes with a supply of meat in its mouth. A 
gracious heaven is tlie preludium of a glorious heaven ; there 
is even much of glory upon a suffering INIinister or Christian ; 
when they are loaded with aspersions and obloquy, even then 
the Spirit of glory and of God resteth on them.* It is no dimi- 
nution, but a manifestation of God's glory, when it shines through 
the glass of creatures ; yea, the less of the creature's worth is 
discovered, the more of God is illustrated. We have this 
treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power 
may be of God and not of us. King Solomon must have a 
thousand, if vine dressers and fruit keepers have their two hun- 
dred.f Let ministers be invisible, so Christ be illustrious. As 
precious Mr. Wadsworth said, if God's work be done, I am con- 
tent to be withdrawn out of sight. So some interpret that text, 
John iii. 29 ; as though the friend of the bridegroom will not 
be seen in the treaty, but he stands behind the curtain, and 
hears the bridegroom's voice, and the bride's consent, and 
greatly rejoiceth because the match is likely to go on. But 
the more completely a minister is nothing in his own eyes, the 
more doth God magnify him ; as the wife shines in the beams 
of her husband's honour or riches, so also doth God in some 
sense shine in his servants' gifts and graces ; our thoughts must 
go beyond the gift to the giver. A clear transparent glass set 
in the sun renders the sun m.ost refulgent, the crystal is scarce 
visible, the sun is all ; yet to our eyes the radiant sunbeams 
are more beautiful by the transmission through the glass, than 
shining directly upon us ; but the glass gives net splendour to 
the sun, it only receives all from him. Thus is Christ all in all, 
and as these glasses are quickly broken and rendered useless, so 
are ministers, but the sun remains in its motion and shines still; 
for the sun depends not on the glass, but the glass on the sun ; 
yea, God sometimes thinks fit to break the glass we are admir- 
ing, that our eyes may be intent upon the Sun of Righteousness, 
and behold all beauties in him., who is the Lord our righteous- 
ness. God in wisdom hath thought fit to cause an eclipse in 
the firmament of his church in these nations, by hiding many 
* 1 Peter, iv. 14. f 2 Cor. iv. 7. Songs viii. 12. 

VOL. I. 2 G 

450 TREl-ACE. 

liglits under a bushel, about thirty years ; and also translated 
most of them unto an upper region, -wlicre they shine brightest 
in their proper orbit, though " to us they disappear ; the break- 
ing of the shell is the brightening of the pearl; they were never 
so bright below as they are now above ; once they saw through 
a glass darkly, now face to face ; and laying aside this glass, 
face immediately they behold the glory of the Lord, and are 
changed into the same image from glory to glory.* 

These blessed souls now with God, are exposed neither to the 
black mists of human ignorance, nor to the foggy vapours of 
sinful defects, nor do they feel or fear any bespattering from 
opprobrious scorners, or black-mouthed slanderers, but are re- 
ceived up into heaven by this cloud of death, that hath hid 
• them out of our sight, and hindered our converse with them ; 
yet they have dropt the mantle of good exam])le, which still we 
have ; and observant eyes, and diligent pens have drawn some 
renowned champions in lively colours, in which we may be- 
hold much of God's image in the face of their intercourse with 
men, and conversation, both in their personal and public 
capacities : this is a petty resurrection, and much good ser- 
vice is thus done to succeeding ages, by which they being dead 
yet speak ; yea, spiritual life is transfused to readers, through 
the lines and leaves, transmitted to them ; blessed be God for 
these famous heroes. If the Jews mentioned illustrious men 
dead, with some distinguishing epithet, as Rabbi Hillel, of 
blessed memory ; why should not the memory of the just still 
be blessed .''•j- Certainly there is a vast difference in the ears 
of Protestants betwixt blessed Bradford and bloody Bonner. 

Men usually say when they have interred the remains of 
their deceased relations, and left them in the dust, that they 
have done their last office to them or for them. But I judge 
that to be a gross mistake, for there are several offices to which 
we are bound on their behalf 1. We ought to lament their 
death as a sad loss to the church of God, (I speak of pious and 
useful persons) decent funeral solemnities anciently lasted a 
considerable time, as we find in scripture. | 2. Observing and 
complying with the commands and the counsels of the departed, 
as in the case of Joseph"'s brethren. 3. Giving them deserved 
" 1 Cor. xiii. 12. 2 Cor. iii. 18. f Prov. x. 7. + Gen. 1. 10. 


Commendation. 4. Vindication of their reputation according to 
truth. 5. Erection of monuments constructed for a memorial, 
as Jacob's over RacheFs grave.* 6. Composition of funeral ele- 
gies, as David's over Saul and Jonathan. 7. Owning our fathers' 
God and covenant ; as Solomon was directed to do. 8. Mani- 
festing evidence of the deceased's charity and piety as the 
widows did in reference to Dorcas. 9- An exact imitation of 
their praiseworthy acts, -f* 10. Communion with departed 
saints, believing that they as such are rejoicing in their glory ; 
hoping in a short time to be with them, thinking of them, study- 
ing conformity to them, that we may do God's will on earth as 
it is done in heaven. :J: 11. Yea, something is also due from 
us, to the surviving relations of our pious deceased friends, as 
David shewed kindness to Jonathan's seed. || All this, and 
possibly more, without the imputation of saint worship, may 
siffviving Christians do, when their religious friends and rela- 
tions disappear in this lov/er world ; only let us not admire 
them, but God in them, so saith the text 2 Thess. i. 10, "When 
he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in 
all them that believe." IMark it, God's holiest saints must not 
be admired but God in them, our admiration must not respect 
men simply, but be terminated upon God through them ; crea- 
ture worship is very natural to us, especially if we see more 
than ordinary excellence in the creature, or receive some singu- 
lar benefit thereby. The great apostle John was twice guilty 
of angel adoration, and was twice admonished against it. Eut 
doubtless it is a good practice, and no despicable office of sur- 
viving friends to commemorate the imitable acts of departed 
Ministers or Christians of considerable eminence and figure in 
the church. This is my apology for writing this history, know- 
ing how acceptable it will be to christian friends, natural rela- 
tions, and to the church of God ; indeed he was amiable to all, 
and very imitable in the passages of his life, and the circum- 
stances that relate to his death ; of what was praiseworthy in 
him, let God have the glory ; and over what is defective in 
the copy or transcriber let charity draw a veil. 

* Dent, xxxiv. 10. Gen. xxxv. 20. 

t 2 Sam. i. 17. 1 Kings iii. C. Acts ix. 39. Heb. vi. 12. 

+ Heb. xii. 22. || 2 Sam. ix. I -.5. 

2 G 2 


I do find that the servcants of God have been very careful 
and particular in writing the lives of eminent men, as Camerarius 
wrote the life of Luther ; Junius, of Ursin ; Beza, of Calvin ; 
Antonius Taius, of Beza ; Josias Simlcrus, of Peter Martyr ; 
Dr. Humphrey, of Bishop Jewell, &c. Melchior Adamus hath 
summed them up together, and Mr. Samuel Clark hath made 
a large collection ; neither the Person described, nor the Writer 
being on a level with those men of God, it doth make me blush 
to appear in this undertaking, especially in so critical an age as 
the present ; but this I dare say, the subject or person treated 
of, was full of good works, and he that treats thereon is full of 
good will. 

Nor have I related all that might have been written, or that he 
himself wrote, judging it not convenient because it might be of- 
fensive. Take this in good part, live up to it, pray for the 
weak transcriber, and beg hard that God would raise up many 
masters in Israel, to make up this and other vacancies made of 
late by the death of eminent ministers, which seems to be a sad 
omen and dreadful prognostic of some desolating judgment ap- 
proaching ; for our defence is departing from us ; the chariots, 
and horsemen of Israel are ascending in a fiery chariot ; stakes 
are taken out of the hedge, that wild beasts may enter ; pillars 
are removed, the house totters, we have lost much good blood, 
Jacob's face looks pale. May our dear Lord once, at last, re- 
store his ministers to their public employments, pour out a 
spirit of prayer, cause sinners universally to be cast into the 
mould of the gospel, and revive a work of reformation, that the 
promise, Isa. xxix. 22, 23, may be performed, " Thus saith the 
Lord, who redeemed Abraham, concerning the house of Jacob, 
Jacob shall not now be ashamed neither shall his face now wax 
pale. But when he seeth his chlidren, the work of mine hands 
in the midst of him, they shall sanctify my name, and sanctify 
the Holy One of Jacob, and shall fear the God of Israel."" 
Amen, so be it. 
March 29///, 1694. 



Hife anti ©catlj 



Mr. Nathaniel Heywood was born in Little Lever, 
in the parish of Bolton-le-Moors in Lancashire. His pa- 
rents, Richard and Alice Heywood, were pious and re- 
spectable ; he was baptized in the parish church, Sept. 
16th, 1633. During his infancy he was exceedingly 
weak and sickly, he was much afflicted with fits of con- 
vulsion, and frequently under the sentence of death in 
the apprehension of all around him ; his tender hearted 
parents often gave him up for gone, but God, who 
quickeneth the dead, brought him from the gates of the 
grave, that by him he might raise sinners from a death 
in sin to spiritual life. Nevertheless those violent 
fits, did so weaken his spirits, that in his younger days 
it was not judged eligible that he should be trained up 
for the ministry, and therefore his parents frequently 
took him from school, and occupied him in learning to 
write and cast up accounts, for the purpose of sending 
him to London to be an apprentice. But his natural 
strength having been recruited, and they being en- 
couraged by his extraordinary capacity for learning, 
kept him still at school, having the advantage of a 


learned and diligent master near them, who advised 
them to educate him as a scholar ; especially from ob- 
serving his inclination bent that way. At last they 
resolved upon it ; and when he had passed his juvenile 
studies at school, after making great proficiency, not- 
withstanding frequent interruptions, he was thought 
prepared for the university at fourteen years of age ; 
whither he went, and was admitted May 4th, 1648, 
into Trinity College at Cambridge ; he was well ap- 
proved for his school attainments ; and devoting him- 
self to his studies, he performed the usual exercises with 
applause ; he had good natural abilities, a quick ap- 
prehension, solid judgment, and tenacious memory, 
which seldom meet in one person ; he was qualified to 
manage what he undertook with great readiness and 
facility; so that he profited in academical learning 
beyond his equals. 

As for religion, as yet his heart was not seasoned 
with a principle of saving grace ; though he was reli- 
giously educiited, united in holy exercises, loved God's 
jjeople, and was not tainted with gross immorality ; 
yet he had not discerned the evil of sin, the malignity 
of his nature, or the necessity of Christ, till he was 
providentially brought under the ministry of Mr. 
Hammond, Fellow of Magdalen College, preacher at 
St. Giles's, through whose plain and powerful preach- 
ing, his mind became the subject of strong convictions, 
which cost him many sad thoughts of heart, as well as 
tears, but ended at last in a genuine conversion, in sin- 
cere covenanting with God, and in centring his soul by 
faith on Jesus Christ. Then he associated with serious 
Christians, and walked exemplarily ; he however com- 
plained of his backslidings, of which he repented, and 
his soul was healed. When he had taken his degree, 
he went to London, and there heard Mr. Peter Sterry ; 


and was much pleased with his talents and manner of 

When he came down into the country, his father 
judged it convenient to place him under the tujtion of 
some reverend minister, by whose care and examj)le he 
might be prepared for further service. And it pleased 
God, in his providence, to settle him in the family of 
that solid and judicious divine, Mr, Edv/ard Gee, mi- 
nister of Eccleston ; where he continued two years 
studying hard, behaved himself orderly, and profited 
much : so that he often blessed God for the good he 
received in that family. And indeed he was moulded 
into the method, manners, and practice of that holy 
and eminent man of God, whose excellent treatises on 
Prayer and Government speak his real worth. He was 
a man distinguished for his learning, orthodoxy, and 
holiness; a most judicious, scriptural preacher ; son to 
that famous Mr. Gee mentioned by historians in the 
fall at Blackfriars. 

Whilst Mr. Hey wood lived in Mr. Gee's family, God 
directed his thoughts to a young gentlewoman in the 
neighbourhood. Miss Elizabeth Parr, a relation to Dr. 
Parr, Bishop of the Isle of Man, whom in convenient 
time he married, and she became a pious, prudent, pro- 
vident wife to him, by whom he had several children, 
six of whom are yet living — two sons and four daugh- 
ters ; his eldest son succeeded in his father's place as 
pastor in the newly erected meeting-house, a young 
man of great accomplishments and exemplary piety. 

When Mr. Heywood was married, it pleased God to 
give him a call to a people in Yorkshire : for he had a 
great desire to be employed in his Lord's work, and 
the very day that an invitation came to him, he told 
the messenger, he had been spending most of it in fast- 
ing and prayer, wherein he found his heart much en- 


larged, and therefore he looked upon that Call as an 
answer of prayer, and on that account freely embraced 
it, and in due time took his departure. 

The place to which he was called was Illingworth 
chapel, in the vicarage of Halifax, Yorkshire. When 
he had preached a day or two with them, the people 
laid hold of him, and engaged him to settle with them, 
which he did. He continued three or four years, and 
was an instrument of much good in that place, having 
a full auditory, and some seals of his ministry. But 
Satan envying the success of the gospel, raised up some 
potent adversaries against him, who maligned and op- 
posed him for the faithfulness of his plain admonitions. 
Some meetings took place about his continuance. One 
said to him, Mr. Heywood, you have raised differences 
and disturbances since you came. He answered, I have 
not sought the peace of the place, but the good of it. 
Which the man ruminated upon, but could not tell 
what to make of that expression ; not remembering 
that the principal design of the gospel and its publish- 
ers, is the good of souls, but the accidental fruit of it is 
dissension, through the corruption of men's hearts, ac- 
cording to what our blessed Lord expressed: " Think 
not that I am come to send peace on earth ; I came not 
to send peace but a sword."* During this controversy 
about his stay or removal, an earnest request was sent 
to him by the people of Orms-church to come among 
them ; he hearkened to them, having several discou- 
ragements at Illingworth, which cannot here be named, 
notwithstanding some cordial friends in that congrega- 
tion adhered closely to him, and claimed an interest in 
him ; both parties using more than ordinary arguments 
and importunity, did exceedingly perplex him, and put 
him upon the rack of suspense. He earnestly sought 
* JMatt. X. 34, 35. 


God about it; he begged the advice and prayers of 
friends, and at last was counselled to refer the business 
to several ministers indifferently chosen by both par- 
ties, to hear what could be said, to obtain a knowledge 
of circumstances, and give their decision in this weighty 
case: indeed a third put in an earnest plea for him, 
namely, Thornton, in Bradford parish, but the contro- 
versy lay chiefly between Ormskirk and Illingworth. 
Ministers met relative to this concern at Wigan, in 
Lancashire, in January, 1656, with two or three of 
the inhabitants of those three forementioned places : 
much debate there was, and some hard words passed ; 
the business was difficult and cost many hours' dis- 
course, both during the day and in the evening ; and 
upon a serious view of the reasons on all hands, at last 
the ministers concluded, that his way was clear to 
leave Yorkshire and remove to Ormskirk, which being 
a great parish, and a considerable market-town, the 
people not only being destitute but very importunate, 
they judged that he might do God and his church more 
service in that great place. And, indeed his own in- 
clinations carried him most that way, for some parti- 
cular reasons. He removed with his family thither in 
the spring, 1657, where he was received with much 
respect and great solemnity : and there he laboured 
faithfully and diligently in the course of his public 
ministry, his private instructions, and his visiting of 
the sick, till August 24, 1662 — that black doom's day, 
on which so many were sentenced and struck dead in 
law as to any public service. 

The annual income of this vicarage was very small, 
not amounting to above £30. a-year; but there was an 
exhibition of £50. a-year granted by queen Elizabeth 
for an itinerant preacher, which exhibition had been 
long enjoyed by the minister of that place. There 


were four of them in Lancashire, of which this was 
one, and £200. per annum was allowed out of the 
revenue for them, which was paid by several trustees 
at the audits. 

At the return of king Charles II. one Mr. Stanning- 
haugh, minister of Aughton, about two miles from 
Ormskirk, when receiving £l48. a-year, rode up to 
London, and by the help of friends, surreptitiously ob- 
tained the annuity of £50. to be settled upon himself; 
which gave occasion to some persons to reflect on a 
sermon Mr. Heywood preached at Ormskirk, on a day 
of thanksgiving for the the king's restoration from 
2 Sam. xix. 30, " And Mephibosheth said unto the 
king, yea, let him take all, forasmuch as my lord the 
king is come again in peace unto his own house :" 
which was indeed an excellent discourse greatlj^ ap- 
proved, and highly aj^plauded by all ; especially the 
gentry, who earnestly solicited him to publish it, but 
he refused, not out of disloyalty, but modesty; not be- 
cause he durst not own his sovereign, but because he 
was not willing to expose himself to observation. 

Mr. Heywood bore this disingenuous carriage of his 
neighbour and pretended friend with great equanimity 
and calmness, which proved a curse to the one and a 
blessing to the other ; for though this Mr. Stanning- 
haugh's living was £l48. a-year, and his tenement 
worth £30. yearly, besides the annual grant of £50. 
and though he had no child, yet he left nothing at his 
decease but debt, and his wife in j)oor circumstances. 

But it pleased God, from that time, to bless Mr. Hey- 
wood's small income wonderfully, and it is next to a 
miracle to consider what great things he did. When 
shortly after he was turned out of all, he paid some debts 
and maintained his numerous family in great decorum, 
(for he had nine children, of whom six are yet living) 


look the lease of a house and some land, for three lives, 
paid £60. and built a considerable portion ; he also 
paid £30. for buying out a lease elsewhere, maintained 
his two sons at school at Up-Holland, which cost him 
£14. a-year, and sent one of them to Mr. Frankland, 
to be educated in university learning, besides having 
many severe afflictions in his family. Yet such was 
the blessing of God, that he passed through all without 
contracting any debt, but rather increasing his pro- 
perty out of his small income. This holy man was 
very sensible of this extraordinary providence, and 
often expressed what he felt with admiring thank- 

In the year 1662, Aug. 24; — That fatal day struck 
him civilly dead with the rest of his brethren : how- 
ever he continued his public preaching in the church 
after that day without disturbance, till the place was 
filled up with a new vicar. This was a Mr. Ashworth, a 
schoolmaster, who lived six or eight miles from thence, 
taught a school, rode to Ormskirk on Saturday, and 
returned back on Monday morning. He was absent 
all the week for several years, so that Mr. Hey wood 
still seemed to have the sole charge of that town and 
parish, visiting the sick, instructing the people, praying 
with them, and preaching privately to them as oppor- 
tunity was offered. He was abundant in the work of 
the Lord, not only in his own parish, but at Wigan, 
Warrington, Liverpool, Preston, Eccleston, and on a 
call in more remote places. 

But in his own parish, and amongst his old hearers 
he was in labours more abundant, he usually preached 
twice on a Lord's day, sometimes several times on 
week days, ordering his labours in different parts of 
the parish, both during the day and at night : even in 
times of great danger, he has preached at one house 



the beginning of the night, and then gone two miles 
on foot over mosses, and preached toward morning to 
another company at another place. 

Nor was he scant and short in his sermons, but 
usually long, two hours at least, often three ; yea, 
sometimes he would even continue four or five hours, 
praying and preaching: his heart was so fully set upon 
his Master's work, that he forgot his own strength and 
his hearers' patience. Nor did he tediously dream 
over his work, but was full of zeal, vigour, tenderness, 
and affection, often strained his voice beyond what his 
natural strength could well bear, which occasioned tor- 
turing and mortal disease — like a candle he spent him- 
self to give others light. 

Neither was he vox et prcsterea nihil, a mere voice 
and no more, as some preachers, who like thunder 
make a loud noise, without any distinct or significant 
sound ; no, his sermons abounded with solid divinity, 
scripture arguments, alluring similies, and heart-melt- 
ing passages. He was an excellent text man, produc- 
ing judicious interpretations ; an experienced casuist, 
resolving cases of conscience with correct discrimina- 
tion; a clear disputant, stating controversies accurately 
and distinctly, answering objections skilfully and satis- 
factorily, and proving the truth to a demonstration. 
He was a pathetic preacher, riveting the nail by faith- 
ful appeals to the consciences of his hearers, and earnest 
exhortations to repentance or to particular duties, and 
also by stating plain, undeniable, and important truths, 
still laying open and obviating Satan's wiles, the deceits 
of a bad heart, and the ensnaring insinuations of a 
wicked world, probing the conscience by a thorough 
examination, and comforting God's children with pre- 
cious gospel promises. 

This, this indeed was his masterpiece, and the main 


scope of his preacliing, to lay open the beauties and ex- 
cellencies of the blessed Jesus, and the great necessity 
which sinners have for him — to display in lively colours 
the love of God in sending his Son, the love of Christ 
in the unparalleled work of redemption, and the under- 
taking, purchase, and offices of the Son of God — to un- 
fold the covenant of grace, and to describe the opera- 
tions of the Spirit in applying the merits of Christ, &c. 
The truth of this appears in two excellent discourses 
transcribed from his own notes, as he preached them 
the same year he died. The one called Christ the 
choicest Gift, which was grounded on John iv. 10. 
The other entitled Christ the best Master, a discourse 
on John xiii. 13. They form two excellent treatises, 
and are bound up together : they were printed after 
his death, (for he could never be persuaded to publish 
any thing,) though doubtless they would have been 
more accurate, if he had supposed they would ever see 
the light ; but such as they are, they have proved very 
acceptable and profitable to the church of God ; many 
have read them with pleasure, and some good divines 
have made extracts from them. 

His labours in the ministry were so exceedingly wel- 
come, that the loss of his public services was greatly 
lamented by the whole town and parish, he was be- 
loved of all, good and bad. A poor ignorant man 
came to him when he was turned out ; saying, ah, Mr. 
Heywood, we would gladly have you preach again in 
the church ; yes, said he, I would as gladly preach as 
you desire it, if I could do it with a safe conscience by 
conforming. The man replied, oh sir, many a matt 
now-a-days makes a great gash in his conscience, can- 
not you make a little nick in yours f 

That was a remarkable disaster which happened 
at Ormskirk on July 30th, 1662 ; which Mr. Heywood, 


thus describes in a letter to a friend : " About four 
o'clock in the afternoon, there was a storm of dreadful 
thunder and lightning for a long time together ; and 
in the town of Ormskirk, and about it, fell a great 
shower of hail in a terrible tempest, hailstones were as 
big as ordinary apples, some say, nine inches in circum- 
ference ; one stone that I took up was above four inches, 
after it had thawed in my hand. The hail broke all 
our glass windows westward ; we have not one square 
whole at the back of our house, so it is with most of 
the houses in and about the town ; it hath cut off all 
the ears of our standing corn, so that most fields which 
were full of excellent barley and other grain, are not 
worth reaping. It hath shaken the apple-trees, and 
in some places bruised the apples in pieces : the hail 
cut boughs from trees, and some say there have been 
strange appearances in the air, of which I shall give 
you a further account. All, especially the ignorant, 
were much terrified, thinking it to be the day of judg- 
ment ; certainly it was a sad sign and effect of God's 
heavy displeasure with us, and I wish it be not a pre- 
sage of more abiding judgments ; they tell me that my 
small share of loss will amount to £10. at least; in 
half an horn* all this hurt was done. The Lord sancti- 
fy this sudden stroke to me and my poor people." Mr. 
Clark in his Examples hath this story, and mentions 
Mr. Heywood's attestation of it, which however I 
thought proper to relate here, partly because this is a 
fuller account than he gives, and partly to shew how 
observant this holy man was of the remarkable provi- 
dences of God. It was his observation that this natural 
storm, was a sad presage of a moral storm on ministers 
and churches, which fell the very month after, which 
rooted up so many useful fruit-bearing trees, marred 
so much good fruit, and shattered the glass by which 


the light of saving truth is conveyed into the house 
of God. This good man was so endeared to his peo- 
ple, that he was resolved never to part from them till 
death made the divorce: of them he thus writes, "I have 
an affectionate though poor, a docile though ignorant 
people, they flock in very great numbers to the ordi- 
nances, and I have hopes of doing some good, (it may 
be already begun) amongst them, I have some solicita- 
tion to conform, but I will not change on any account 
whatsoever, let me have your prayers, help me for this 
poor people, whom I love as my own children, and long 
after in the bowels of Christ." 

He had frequent disorders in his body which much 
promoted God's work upon his heart. In the year 
1667, he had a violent distemper, which in a fortnight's 
time brought his bodily frame very low, and by the 
time he was recovered, his dear wife fell into a sad 
languishing disease, which threatened death, besides 
grievous afflictions in her spirit, and sad apprehensions 
of death for above a month together. A swelling also 
commenced in her throat, which increased to a hard 
tumour in the inside, and which inevitably in the eye 
of reason threatened death, but beyond all expectation, 
God did graciously remove that cause of complaint, 
and raised her up again in mercy to the family. In 
the year 1670, his son Nathaniel was in an extraordinary 
manner seized with convulsion fits, which acutely pained 
and distorted his face, limbs, and every part of his body, 
but God also at last restored him. These providences 
however found Mr. Heywood work for, and quickened 
his spirit in, prayer. 

In October 1671, Mr. Heywood fell into a malignant 
fever, which (as his two doctors, Dr. Fife aud Dr. 
Grundy said) had seized the nerves, and spirit, and 
brain ; he was not in extremity of pain, because, (as 


the physicians said) the disease lay not so much in the 
blood. Upon the thirteenth day after he began, it was 
judged that all was over with him. Dr. Fife, a boister- 
ous man, and Justice of the peace in the Fylde country 
near Garstang, called for a candle and bade him open 
his mouth, which when he had inspected, he swore a 
great oath, and said, " his tongue is as black as a coal, 
call the mistress of the house," said he, " let him set 
all things in order, and make his will, for he is a gone 
man ;" these words astonished his family, but his own 
and only surviving sister, being present, and hearing 
these confident expressions, gathered encouragement, 
and thought within herself, "this is but a man and may 
be deceived, God is God, and can make his words false." 
Thus Dr. Fife left him as hopeless, and said it was in 
vain to give him any thing. But before he came to 
his own house at Houghton Tower, a fever violently 
seized the doctor himself, and in a few days brought 
him to his end, so he never returned home alive ; but 
from that very day the fever abating, Mr. Heywood 
began to amend. There was probably at that time a 
crisis when the disease was at its height, for it was a 
dreadful day and night, he had all the symptoms of death 
upon him, but God had mercy upon him, as upon sick 
Epaphroditus,* God had much work for him to do. He 
however continued under weakness, and some disorder 
in his head, for he could not be persuaded that he was 
at home, confidently affirming he was at BickerstafF, 
where indeed he was immediately before he began his 
distemper, on a visit to Sir Edward Stanley, who had 
begun in a fever, and died shortly after. Mr. Heywood 
would needs be helped to the window to see the funeral 
pass by to the church. 

This sore sickness was in the year 1671 ; and the 
* Phil. ii. 27. 


king's licenses came out in the year following, 1672 ; 
but indeed hitherto he had very little or no disturbance 
in his work of preaching, God was preparing him both 
for service and suffering. This sickness preceded ser- 
vice, God laid the foundation low, designing to build 
high, and often he thinks fit to lay the fairest colours 
upon a sable bottom ; God passed the sentence of death 
upon him immediately before a petty resurrection, for 
in the spring following came out the liberty to preach. 
Mr. Heywood cordially embraced it, and had two 
chapels licensed, namely, Bickerstaff, adjoining to Lady 
Stanley's house, two miles south from Ormskirk, the 
other was Scarisbrick, two miles north from the parish 
church, both in Ormskirk parish ; these he supplied 
constantly, preaching at the one chapel one Lord's day, 
at the other the next, of which he thus writes, " I bless 
God my congregation is numerous and attentive, oh 
that they were as fruitful ; my family is healthful, oh 
that they were more holy." 

He continued two years in these two chapels, but 
about April 9th, 1674, he thus writes, " I have had 
more trouble and opposition in my ministerial employ- 
ment, these four months last past than ever I had in 
all my life, yet am not taken off to this day. Archers 
have sorely grieved us and shot at us thirty-four 
arrows, (I mean warrants,) but our bow abides in 
strength, by the hands of the mighty God of Jacob ; 
officers have come eighteen Lord's days together, but 
have not as yet scattered us. How easy it is for God 
to save us while we serve him, if we could believe ; I 
am encouraged to hope that some good is done, or may 
be done, by my poor labours in this season, and it is 
no bad sign, when Satan rageth so violently against 
us. God can work without, or against means, and can 
work by improbable means to accomplish great ends. 

VOL. I. 2 H 


I was never more inwardly borne up under storms, nor 
strengthened against difficulties at any period of my 
life, it may be my time is but short, and my work near 
an end. Oh, that I may live and die in God's work 
and way, and be faithful unto death. Dear brother, 
let my condition have a deeper impression on your 
heart than ordinary. Two warrants, one for £20. the 
other for £40. have been out against me these seven 
weeks, but we keep our doors fast barred, and the 
officers are very civil to us. Oh that I could see you ! 
I have no horse, but go all my journeys on foot." 

November 13, 1674. He thus writes, "I bless God 
my liberty, nowithstanding all my troubles, is not 
wholly lost, but sometimes disturbed ; we meet in 
fear, yet we meet in both chapels ; no warrant has been 
sent for a month or more, and my auditory increaseth 
again. O that I had a heart to improve late experi- 
ences and present opportunities, and do my duty, leav- 
ing the issue to him that judgeth righteously." 

But his excessive pains, though refreshing to his 
spirit, were wasting to his bodily frame, for about that 
time, thus he writes : "I am still at work in both 
chapels, but I am much brought down, with pains and 
weakness of body, having overdone my strength, and 
wasted myself in these intervals of liberty, which God 
hath given us. But I have no reason to repent any 
thing I could ever do for so good a Master. O that I 
had done more and better. 

About the same time, he writes thus : " Some assaults 
Satan hath made upon me, with a right hand tempta- 
tion ; the whole parish of Aughton have been impor- 
tunate with me, to put myself into a capacity for their 
parsonage, worth seven or eight score pounds per 
annum, the bishop, (that is. Dr. Wilkins) promiseth 
favour to me in it ; but God did not leave me so much. 


as to have any serious thoughts of yielding to that 
temptation. I do preach still, but not so constantly, 
nor in so full a congregation as formerly. Dear bro- 
ther, I beseech you for the Lord's sake, and for the 
loye of the spirit, strive together with me in your 
prayers to God for me, you know for what, &c." 

At last after many strugglings, threats, alarms, 
people's withdrawing, and rallying again, a stratagem 
was contrived to knock all dead at a blow. Some 
deputy lieutenants sent a party of soldiers to take Mr. 
Heywood in the pulpit, and though it was known, yet 
they met in Bickerstaff chapel : Lady Stanley came 
out of her gallery, and placed herself near the pulpit 
door, hoping to overawe their spirits, and obstruct 
their designs ; the soldiers stood without, while Mr. 
Heywood was at prayer, but when he had prayed, they 
rushed in, and required him to come down and go along 
with them, he mildly desired the favour that they 
would give him leave to preach, and he would go along 
with them, but they rudely pushed towards the pulpit; 
the Lady would have stopped them, but they pressed 
forwards, opened the pulpit door, got hold of his coat 
and tore it, and forcing him out, took him away with 
them straight to Up-Holland, nor could the Lady's 
mediation prevail to procure him a little refreshment ; 
only on the road he grew faint, and desired them to 
call with him at an alehouse, which they did, and the 
landlady, though he had no accjuaintance with her, was 
exceeding kind to him, and said he should have any 
thing she had in the house ; but " those rogues," said 
she, " shall not have a morsel that took him," so they 
carried him away to an alehouse in Up-Holland, where 
he lodged that night, from whence he thus wrote to 
his wife : — 

*' I am very well, I bless God, and never in greater 
2 H 2 


honour or so highly advanced in all my life, I was 
dragged out of the pulpit with a pistol lifted up to my 
head, and a G — d-d — m-me in my ears, but the man re- 
pents of his rashness, and wishes he had let me preach, 
for he never heard a better prayer, &c. But be not 
troubled, God hath shewed me more mercy than I can 
be thanl<:ful for ; O help me to praise him, O what 
cause have we to rejoice in suffering on this account, 
God will have glory, and his church the benefit; but I 
fear it must be an imprisonment, or promise not to 
preach, which is my very life." 

But God in his gracious providence did also scatter 
this cloud, for the day after when it was noised abroad 
that Mr. Heywood was taken, a multitude of people, 
and many considerable gentlemen, and some that were 
no friends to his cause, yet out of respect to his person, 
mediated for him ; even several of good report, and 
intimate with the Justices, offered to be bound for his 
appearance, and to give any security that should be 
required ; the Justices then tendered him the Oxford 
oath, he was in a strait, and peremptorily refused it ; 
they had some advantage against him, he told them 
that persons must swear conscientiously and with 
judgment, and therefore he desired some time to con- 
sider of it, which was granted ; and seeing such an ap- 
pearance of persons of all ranks for him, they gave 
him respite, and liberty to go home, till the next 
Quarter Sessions, which were to be held at Wigan a 
month after, and they bound him to appear at the 

Thus he was delivered out of that snare and went 
home, and wrote the following letter that day, dated 
Jan. 28th, 1674. " Pray help me to praise God, 
and in your prayers remember a poor sufferer for the 
gospel. People do so throng in to see me, now I am 


come home again, that I have not time to write fully to 
you, but commit you to God and his protection, that 
you may long enjoy, and usefully improve that svi^eet 
liberty in God's vineyard which I doubt I have lost ;" 
and indeed so it proved. 

The Sessions at Wigan came on, he attended there 
according to his bonds ; several Justices appeared for 
him, and his friends came to see the issue, and to 
mediate for him ; old Lady Stanley came herself with 
her husband ; Mr. Henry Houghton, a Justice of the 
peace ; Mr. Christopher Banister of Bank, and several 
others spoke much on his behalf ; another Justice then 
upon the bench, said, if Mr. Heywood was sent to 
Lancaster jail, he should be as comfortably maintained, 
and as honourably released, as ever any prisoner was. 
Some of his adversaries, seeing which way the Court 
inclined, stole away in discontent, took horse and rode 
home. Thus the snare was again broken, and Mr. 
Heywood was dismissed to the joy of his friends, vexa- 
tion of his enemies, and surprise of all. 

Other snares were laid to entrap him on the Five 
Mile Act, but so generally was he beloved, no one 
could be brought to swear that he lived in the town, 
though he was usually at home, and conversed openly 
among the inhabitants. A warrant was issued out to 
distrain upon Mr. Hey wood's goods for £20 ; but the 
oiSicers said the doors were shut, and they had no orders 
to break them, yet they might have taken advantage, 
if they had been severe; but indeed they were generally 
very favourable. It is true, the doors were kept fast 
for half a year together, till things wore off; and they 
never got a pennyworth of his goods, which was looked 
upon as a very wonderful providence, for children and 
others were frequently passing and repassing through 
the out doors, in front and behind. God took him off 


his work by men's rigour, and also impeded his former 
diligence, by his own immediate hand, upon his body, 
much about the same time. Thus he writes : 

"May 7th, 1675. I am glad your precious liberty 
is continued. I have nothing to do now at home, and 
am much abroad, which is a heavy burden to me, pray, 
continue, increase your fervent prayers for me ; riding 
is very painful to me." 

Jan. 1st, 1676, he writes thus : " I am now very 
busy, blessed be God ; and these holy days, (so called) 
when others play, I work, having preached oftener here 
in a few days, than I did in the whole year preceding.. 
I was lately at Chester, being forcibly drawn thither 
by the importunity of friends, where I preached thrice, 
and had great encouragement ; God hath much people 
I believe in that place, they would have persuaded me 
to live with them ; but I am resolved to remain here 
yet, where providence hath so visibly settled me, pre- 
served and provided for me. My lads seem to be in- 
clined to the ministry — who knows but God may be 
fitting instruments for his work in the next age? for my 
part I can see no reason to look for any thing but trials 
in this." 

He was always a zealous impugner of, and a notable 
champion against papists, of whom there are great 
numbers in those parts. When Mr. Heywood had 
been sent for to visit sick persons, in which work he 
was constant, careful, and sometimes successful; popish 
friends or neighbours would often procure some popish 
priest, or one of their religion, to come also to them, 
and if they had but the least pretence to give it out 
that the party died in their faith, they would wonder- 
fully exult over tlie Protestants. One person died, 
with whom Mr. Heyv/ood took great pains, and a 
popish priest ako frefjuented that house, who Avas so 


vexed because he could not prevail with the party, that 
he wrote some queries for Mr. Heywood to answer ; 
these he did so judiciously and solidly refute, that the 
ignorant priest was nettled and puzzled, and sent to 
one of their more learned advocates to sujDport their 
desperate and falling cause ; this man made a large re- 
joinder, with abundance of quotations out of ancient 
writers, to which Mr. Heywood made a learned and 
sufficient reply ; only he was deficient, because he had 
not by him the authors quoted, therefore he sent the 
papers to Mr. Illingworth, an excellent scholar, and at 
that time much conversant with the College library at 
Manchester, who took abundance of pains to search 
out and read over some large volumes, to answer a 
quotation which referred not to book, chapter, or page; 
however by their joint efforts, that work was incom- 
parably executed, worthy of an impression, but to this 
day they heard no more of that gentleman. 

Another passage he wrote in a letter dated June 12, 
1675, to this purpose : "I do just nothing almost, 
either publicly or privately ; it is much worse with me 
than before the indulgence, yet God hath of late em- 
ployed me another way, not however so delightful or 
congenial as preaching. A gentlewoman inclined to 
marry a Popish gentleman, would not marry till she 
had satisfaction that it was lawful, from some divine, 
and pitched on me to resolve the case, which I did very 
freely and plainly to her once or twice : I never dealt 
so plainly with any person in my life, and yet she took 
all well, whereas she differed with her nearest relations 
and best friends fur speaking but a little against it : she 
would needs have my reasons in writing, and having 
got them in a large dissuasive letter, she shewed it to 
the gentleman, and he carried it to a priest. Twelve 
days after, she brought me a long and subtle answer, 


to which I made a large and, I think, satisfactoiy re- 
ply. In the meantime we endeavoured to divert her to 
other matches, but all in vain, her affections were too 
strong for her j udgment. Though she seemed to ap- 
prove and consent to my reply, yet she kept up her 
connection with the gentleman, and was just on the 
point of marriage, so that I could expect no other fruit 
of my labour in it, than my own satisfaction that I had 
done my duty, leaving the event to God : God appeared 
in the mount. One Mr. D. a hopeful young gentle- 
man of religious parents in Cheshire, coming very acci- 
dentally to A. and finding this lady there, was attracted 
by her, paid his addresses to her, and married her in 
eight days' time. Such a providence must not pass 
without particular notice, and special praise to God. 
The young gentleman came thither also for a diversion, 
yet knowing nothing of her but designing another 
place, was persuaded by a minister in his company to 
take a night's lodgings at A. This circumstance has 
become a subject of conversation throughout the whole 
country, has caused shame and confusion to the Papists, 
who had a design upon that family and were confident 
it was their own; and has been a source of joy to all 
good Protestants, and all friends of that worshipful 
family. I want and crave your help, to give due 
praise to God for answering prayers so wonderfully." 

Another thing which greatly exasperated the Popish 
party, was a severe and pointed sermon Mr. Heywood 
preached on Nov. 5, 1673. at Scarisbrick chapel, from 
Rev. xviii. 4, a very learned, judicious discourse against 
the Papists ; which, together with the forementioned 
provocations, did so offend them, that though they could 
not take full revenge on him themselves, yet they pre- 
vailed with some Justices to prosecute him ; and this is 
thought to be the true reason of all that un2)aralleled 


rage which some displayed against Mr. Heywood, 
whereas several others in the same circumstances 
as culpable, were suffered to enjoy their meetings 

In the midst of these employments and oppositions, 
God was pleased to lay a very afflictive distemper upon 
him, which for a long time was judged to be the 
gravel; certainly it was exceedingly acute and painful, 
yet it is disputable whether his loss of gospel liberties, 
or his violent bodily disorder, was the greater afflic- 
tion on him. His being on horseback about six or 
seven miles, in the year 1675, rendered his pain scarcely 
tolerable. Thus he writes : " Want of health and 
liberty (believe me) are two sore evils ; I hope you will 
particularly help me with your prayers for direction as 
to health, but more especially as to the restoration of 
liberty in my beloved work, the loss of which is a 
greater grief, than the want of health and ease." In 
another letter dated July 15, 1676, he saith, " I have 
endured extreme pain and torment a month together, 
nearly the whole of which time the passages of nature 
affected by my complaint, were almost entirely ob- 
structed, which caused inexpressible agony, and so en- 
feebled my frame that I began to apprehend death was 
approaching. The good Lord fit and prepare me for 
it, and account me worthy to find mercy in that time 
of need. My pain was occasioned by the sultriness of 
the weather, and preaching in that hot season oftener 
and longer than I was well able to bear. I am sure I 
have greatest reason to submit to his holy will, and 
even to be thankful also, that though he hath afflicted 
me very sore, yet he hath not given me over to death, 
whereas I hear of many that have of late been carried 
off by my disorder, (Bishop Wilkins, cousin John 
Crompton, and several in this quarter within these two 


months.) I beg your prayers that, if God spare my 
life, he would also give health and liberty to improve 
it in his service, more publicly and usefully ; or if 
death come, (which will be less unwelcome because of 
my restraints, pangs, and troubles in this world, only 
my wife and children maJ^e the thoughts of it burthen- 
some) may God be glorified, I hope it will be my ad- 
vantage. I wish neither you nor any other faithful 
minister, that minds and loves his work, may ever 
know what I have felt in the want of my stated charge 
and accustomed employment. Other afflictions are 
light, compared to a dumb mouth and silent sab- 

Yet, notwithstanding all this affliction, he had a very 
great desire, once again, if it were the will of God, to 
visit his friends in Yorkshire, and God was pleased to 
grant his request, for he gave him some mitigation of 
his pain, which was an encouragement to undertake 
that journey; accordingly himself, his wife, and his 
two sons, travelled into Yorkshire, April 20, 1677 ; 
there he preached the sermons that have been since 
printed, and another most excellent and pathetic ser- 
mon on Rom. v. 8. From thence he sent his eldest son 
to be trained up in academical learning with Mr. 
Frankland at Natland in Westmoreland. But O what 
affectionate parting was there, as if they must never see 
one another's faces again, (and indeed so it proved) they 
could not speak to one another for weeping and exces- 
sive emotion, he desired another to pray, for he could 
not refrain. In that journey, he was carried out be- 
yond himself in praying, preaching, and discoursing to 
the admiration and edification of all his former friends 
in that district, though he had frequent returns of his 
wonted pain. He was as a man coming down from hea- 
ven to tell what is done there, or as one ripe for heaven. 


too great for earth, upon the wing to take his flight 
into the mansions above, as happened to be the case. 

After he had done what he designed, he left York- 
shire, May 1, 1677, but could travel that day only ten 
miles ; the next morning he went to Rochdale, but was 
forcibly detained by the importunity of christian friends, 
and preached there that evening, though greatly to his 
prejudice as to health ; the day following he reached 
Bolton, and, as he said, with great difficulty and hard 
struggles they got home on Friday night. Thus God 
carried him abroad in mercy, and brought him season- 
ably back to his own house in safety. 

How much he was satisfied with this journey (though 
his pains were extreme several days after his return 
home) his letter, May 14, 1677, testifies : " The great 
mercy," saith he, " in my late journey to you, comforts 
with you, and safe return home, where we found all 
well, I hope I shall never forget ; pray help me to be 
grateful for them. I do heartily thank you for all your 
pulpit, table, house, and country kindness. I am sorry 
and ashamed I made no better improvement of them, 
not knowing that ever I shall again enjoy such oppor- 
tunities of doing myself and others good in your quar- 
ter, but an indisposed body and a bad heart mar duties 
and waste mercies." His distemper still continued and 
prevailed upon him all that summer. In a letter dated 
September 20, 1677, he saith, " I am far from being 
well, and as the church once complained, she forgat 
prosperity, so I health, and am ready sometimes to add, 
as she did, ' My strength and ray hope is perished 
from the Lord.' This day five weeks, I came from the 
exercise at Toxteth Park, where I had preached twice, 
and oftener than my strength could well bear. Since 
that day I have never been on horseback, nor preached 
except once near home ; but all this time God hath 


been preaching to me, with a terrible thundering voice. 

that I could hear the rod, and him who hath ap- 
pointed it. So sharp and so long a fit of pain I never 
had, since this disorder seized me, God alone knows 
what may be the issue of it, but for my part, though I 
find it no easy matter to look death in the face, and to 
conquer the difficulties that precede and attend it, yet 

1 have no great reason to love life, or to desire my long 
stay in this wicked, weary world ; my agonizing days 
and wearisome nights make thoughts of death and the 
grave less terrible, and apprehensions of rest with 
Christ most welcome and pleasant. But I feel natural 
inclinations working towards life, and fondly hold up 
to myself the fair glass of doing God more and better 
service in his church. I am best resolved and most 
at anchor, when I can say, (but oh how seldom, how 
coldly !) The will of the Lord be done. Dear brother, 
pray for me, (as I would do for myself) that to me to 
live may be Christ, and to die gain. Yesterday for 
some hours I was in extreme torment, but am much 
easier, I bless God, to-day ; but my pain is not in the 
same manner as formerly, but like an ulcer in the blad- 
der, which makes my disease more dangerous as well 
as painful. It is the Lord's mercy that I am not ut- 
terly consumed, that I can sit thus long to write to you, 
which many a time I cannot, but I am now weary." 

The last letter, so far as I can find, was by him dated 
Oct. 23rd, 1677; which I shall for the most part 

" My dear Brother, tliis evening I received yours, for 
which I thank you, it breathes nothing but love and 
comfort to me. Oh, how sweet, how seasonable your 
expressions of love ! Oh, how tender ! especially I 
thank you for your prayers, and the prayers of others 
by your means. I account them a precious treasure. 


and the surest and speediest remedy in all troubles. 
Oh ! pray again, who knows but that may prevail when 
nothing else can ? I have been sensibly better since that 
day on which you shed so many tears over my ease 
with such breathings of soul. But who am I, that any 
should be concerned for me ? a poor, weak, useless crea- 
ture, nothing and less than nothing ; I have been long, 
with respect to usefulness in God's vineyard, a withered 
branch, a dry stick, and now my body is withered like 
the grass, my skin parched, my moisture dried up 
through extremity of pain, which hath continued nine 
or ten weeks, day and night. About a month ago, 
friends seeing death in my face, they prevailed with 
me to send for Dr. Grundy, who found me in a lan- 
guishing condition, yet not without some hope. He 
told me my distemper was a dysuria, my blood was 
vitiated, my moisture sour, and there wanted due 
separation of the serum from the blood, that it would 
require much time and patience to bring the body to a 
good state, &c. Since, I have been taking one sort or 
other of physic ; still however my pain continues, 
though not altogether so acute, as at the first, but I 
have very weary, restless nights ; many times I am 
constrained to get up aud walk two or three hours, 
but God supports, his word comforts in all and over 
all, his ways are mercy and truth, it is his mercy that 
I am not consumed, yea, it is in mercy and faithfulness, 
that I am afflicted. I would not have been without 
this trial for an earthly kingdom ; if God please to 
spare my life, and restore strength, I hope others will 
find that I have gained considerably by this sea-adven- 
ture. — I am your indebted and endeared brother, N. 

His disorders growing thus upon him, gradually 
weakened his frame, and took out the pins and pulled 


«lown the stakes of his frail tabernacle ; lie wore away 
insensibly ; his friends seeing he had strength to walk, 
did not apprehend his end so near, as indeed it proved. 
On Thursday, December 13, 1677, they perceived him 
to alter, and grow something worse than he had been, 
not so much in the violence of pain, as in the decay of 
spirits, and falling into drowsiness and slumbering ; 
that very day, he said with tears running down his 
face, that he could willingly die if it were the next 
hour, but for the good of the church, and his poor wife 
and children, and with them he could be content to 
live, were it in prison. That night being ready to go 
to bed, he sat down in his chair and looking up to- 
wards heaven, moved his eyes very much, his wife 
asked him how he did, but he could not answer, as she 
supposed, but soon after he said he would go to bed, 
lie fell into a similar trance, and lay for a while speech- 
less ; being better, he looked about him, and saw them 
weeping, and said, if you knew Christ better, this 
carnal affection would cease, and natural affection 
would be sanctified, and run in a spiritual channel ; 
oh ! learn to know Christ more ; for my own part, I 
have preached Christ all my life, and, I bless God, 
with good success. It is common with many now-a- 
days, to have mean and low thoughts of Christ and 
his imputed righteousness, but if I had twenty lives to 
live, I would spend them all in that work. 

On Friday, a kinsman who had come from London 
visited him, but he was so weak and listless, that he 
was very unfit for discourse ; and indeed at the best, 
he was sparing in conversation ; he used to speak lit- 
tle, but what he did speak was very pithy, pertinent, 
and sententious. 

On Saturday night, Mr. Starkey, a reverend and 
pious minister, visited him ; he asked hira, whether it 


was any trouble to liim that he did not conform? He 
answered, " No, it is a great comfort to me :" this he 
spake with much cheerfuhiess, adding more words to 
evidence his satisfaction, in what he had done and suf- 
fered : Mr. Starkey asked him, what promises he could 
now rely upon, or what scripture passages supported 
him ? He answered, " For me to live is Christ, and 
to die is gain," — " Christ hath loved me, and given 
himself for me."* He was frequently repeating those 
words, " Come, Lord Jesus, come quickly." 

About four hours before he died, being asked how 
he did ? he answered, " very well." The last words 
he was heard to utter, were, " Come away. Lord, come, 
come ;" and so he breathed out his blessed soul, on the 
Lord's day morning, Dec. 16, 1677, about nine o'clock: 
thus God made the day of his hard labour, the day of 
his entrance into his eternal rest. 

And it is worthy of observation, that God hath 
taken off many eminent ministers, and excellent Chris- 
tians from the stage of this world, near or upon that 
day. This holy day of heavenly rest hath commenced 
with them the everlasting day of rest in heaven. 
Christ's resurrection day hath been their ascension 
day. They parted with jarring music on earth to 
mingle with the celestial choir above. Our brother 
departed, though not very tuneable in his voice, often 
made melody in his heart below ; now the high praises 
of God are sounded by him, and at the great day, soul 
and body shall make a melodious concert in blessed 

And now this holy, learned, and industrious man of 
of God is advanced above guilt, corruption, temptation, 
and persecution, pains of body, fears of spirit, dis- 
turbances in God's worship, imprisonments, confis- 
* Phil. i. 21. Gal. ii. 20. 


cations, banishments. Oh, what a blessed state have 
those above taken possession of ; happy souls ! that are 
safely lodged in the arms of their dear Redeemer. 
It were worth while to stand still, and take a view of 
the spirits made perfect in the other world.* 

Let us glance a little on their privative and positive 
happiness, described Rev. xxii. o — 5. 1. There shall 
be no more curse : that is, no more effects of God's 
displeasure upon man for Adam's sin, nor causeless 
curse by man's unjust censures. 2. Siit the throne of 
God and the Lamb shall be in it : this is the beatific 
vision, which secures souls from sin and suffering, and 
who dare presume to arrest or annoy the king's fa- 
vourites in his presence ? 3. And his servants shall 
serve him : whether devils or men will or not, these 
blessed attendants on the King of glory, shall never be 
interrupted in their delightful service. 4. A7id they 
shall see his face : that is, they shall not behold him in 
a glass darkly, as now they see God in ordinances, but 
then face to face, yea, they shall see him as he is, 
(which is a riddle to us here below,) immediately 
though not comprehensively. 5. And his name shall 
be in their foreheads : that is, they shall openly pro- 
fess whose they are, and to whom they belong, as dis- 
tinguished visibly from wicked men and hypocrites. 
They shall no more skulk in co^'ners, or be thrust out 
of public places, but shall openly avow their Master. 

6. And there shall be no night there : no works of 
darkness to lament or conflict with, no beasts of prey 
to creep forth and worry the saints, no secret plots 
against them, no ignorance amongst christian societies 
to create differences, jealousies, and animosities. 

7. Thet/ need no candle, neither light of the sun : no 
need of ordinances, such as are used and useful here 

* Heb. xii. 23. 


below; preachers shall study or preach no more, people 
need not hear sermons; neither preachers nor hearers 
shall stand in need of seals, the substance is present, 
shadows flee away. 8. The Lord God giveth them 
light: their enjoyment of God is immediate, uninter- 
rupted and satisfying, in his light they see light ; as 
the object will be clearer to be seen, so their eyes will 
be perfectly illuminated to behold him. 9. And they 
shall reign : though his servants shall serve him, yet 
it shall be no troublesome bondage, but a liberty and 
dominion ; they shall sit with Christ in his throne as 
assessors, judge the world, and (it may be) judge their 
judges, approving the righteous sentence of their royal 
Master, the blessed Jesus, King of kings, and Lord of 
lords.* And if all this be meant of some glorious state 
of the church on earth, (as some will needs have it) yet, 
that is but a faint resemblance of a more happy state 
in heaven. And further, for the duration of it, it is 
added : — 10. And they shall reign ^or ever and ever : 
earthly monarchs are but short-lived, kingdoms have 
their periods, but kings are of shorter continuance ; of 
Christ's kingdom there is no end, and the reign of his 
subjects runs parallel with the life of God, and line of 
eternity. O blessed souls ! O happy saints ! that shall 
for ever be with the Lord : and here we leave the soul 
of our dear brother, singing triumphantly the song of 
Moses and the Lamb on the heights of Zion, whilst 
we poor mortals are glad if we can only sing the song 
of degrees. 

As for the solemn interment of that casket, once the 
receptacle, now the relict of a precious pearl ; it was 
judged meet that the solemnity should be put off till 
Wednesday, Dec. 19, 1677 ; that distant friends might 
have seasonable notice ; and on that day Mr. Starkey, 
* Rev. iii. 21. 1 Cor. vi. 2. 

VOL. I. 2 I 


a Nonconformist minister, preached an excellent ser- 
mon in the parish church at Ormskirk, (no man for- 
bidding him ; nay, all that were any way concerned, 
consenting) on Col. iii. 4, " When Christ, who is our 
life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him 
in glory." There was a vast confluence of all descrip- 
tions of people at his funeral, great lamentation was 
made, and many signal demonstrations of universal 
love and respect he had, from the whole country ; his 
body was laid in the chancel, in a burying place, which 
belongs to the ancient family of the Stanleys of Bicker- 
staff, knights and baronets ; it was with their free con- 
sent and desire. The reverend minister that preached, 
after he had judiciously, learnedly, and profitably 
handled his text, gave a short but full account of the 
deceased, in his several capacities, as minister, husband, 
father, friend, and especially Godwards as a Christian ; 
and the hearers in accordance with his discourse, gave 
testimony to the truth of what was spoken, while they 
discovered the sense they entertained of their ir- 
reparable loss. All the people of the town, in their 
different circumstances, doing him honour in their 
peculiar way : Mr. Constable, the chief officer in the 
town, of considerable authority, carried the staff, (like 
a mace) before the corpse, and the rest walked in due 
and decent order. 

Now, although this was insignificant to the dead, 
and not much edifying to the living ; yet decent burials 
have always amongst civilized nations been considered 
incumbent on the living, and an honour to the dead ; 
and there is a special remembrance of this in scripture; 
for it is said of Hezekiah, that all Judah, and the in- 
habitants of Jerusalem, did him honour at his death. 
On the contrary, it is recorded as a perpetual disgrace to 
Jehoram, the wicked son of good Jehoshaphat, that he 


departed without being desired ; and of another wicked 
son of a good king, Jehoiakim, the son of Josiah, it is 
said, they shall not lament for him, saying, " Ah my 
brother ;" but he shall be " buried with the burial of 
an ass, drawn and cast forth beyond the gates of Jeru- 
salem."* But this good man honoured God whilst living, 
and God honoured him at his death ; and advanced his 
soul to better, and eternal honour. 

Mr. Heywood went to his grave in peace, after all 
his violent tossings upon the tempestuous sea of this 
world ; he died in the forty-fourth year of his age, 
having lived long in a little time ; and I find several 
excellent men taken out of the world about that age. 
So among the German divines, Strigelius died forty- 
four years of age, and six months ; Flinschpach, forty- 
four; Simlerus died in his forty-fifth year; so we find 
Erpenius died at forty years of age ; Mr. Robert Rollock 
died in the forty-third year of his age ; the famous Dr. 
Whitaker in his forty-seventh ; but to mention no 
more, our celebrated Mr. William Perkins lived but 
forty-four years. 

And indeed we have frequently observed, that la- 
borious ministers are short-lived ; some are of weak 
constitutions, and spend their lungs with speaking; 
or by a sedentary life contract diseases, or are afflicted 
by the untoward ness of their people ; or God in judg- 
ment takes them away as a punishment to a wicked 
world ; however, like a candle, they spend themselves 
to give light to others. Many gracious young men 
are very zealous, and make haste with their work ; 
they get it quickly despatched out of their hands, and 
go to bed betimes ; and God is not willing to be too 
long without having them in his immediate presence. 
Oh how many fine promising plants have been plucked 
* 2 Chron. xxxli. 33. xxi. 20 Jer. xxii. 18, J9. 
2 I 3 


up of late years, heavy laden with choice fruits ; whilst 
some old withered trees, barren and fruitless, still stand 
cumbering the ground ! But the sovereign Jehovah 
knov/s what is best, and does all things well. 

A little while before Mr. Heywood died, he said to 
a friend, "I think this turning out of our licensed places 
will cost Mr. Yates and myself our lives. Oh this goes 
heavily ! our casting out of our great places was not 
so much as casting us out of oui- little places ;" and in- 
deed Mr. Yates of "VYarrington died shortly after. 

Having thus nakedly given a brief account of Mr. 
Heywood's birth, life, employment, and death, and 
what is worthy of remark on these ; I shall select some 
features of his character, pleasing to trace, and imitable 
by his surviving brethren, friends, and hearers : for 
the memory of the just is blessed. Possibly genera- 
tions yet to come may reap benefit by what they find 
recorded of him ; and I dare appeal to the God of 
truth, who searcheth the heart, that the description I 
shall give of him is true, which I have by personal know- 
ledge, or creditable testimony. 

1. As to his figure, physiognomy, and constitution, 
which is the case, or shell, that was engaging enough, 
no part lacking, crooked or deformed ; tall and straight, 
with dark curled hair ; not corpulent nor very thin, 
yet stouter in his body than might be supposed from 
his face ; of a healthful constitution, after he was past 
his childhood ; which might have continued long, had 
not the vessel been shattered by impetuous dashings, 
inflamed with the love of God and zeal for souls, which 
made inroads upon his frame faster than nature could 
keep pace ; and this over-driving took off the chariot 
wheels ; for all agreed, that his excessive pains laid the 
foundation of those diseases, which at last wasted his 
spirits. He was an excellent footman, and could walk 


both fast and far, and in his last disorder walked much, 
and found most ease in that exercise ; though when 
he went beyond his strength, it cost him dear. In his 
best health he was subject to extraordinary perspiration, 
especially in his preaching; and perhaps that perspira- 
tion was some advantage to him ; but when he could 
not exert himself to produce that effect, and thereby to 
cause the acrid humours to evaporate, they might 
settle, and occasion his acute diseases, or otherwise 
when in a state of perspiration he might be prejudiced 
by cooling too rapidly. Once old Mr. Woods and he 
preached in a chapel on a hot summer's day, the num- 
ber of people was too great to come within hearing; 
Mr. Heywood having preached first, Mr. Woods with- 
drew the large assembly, from that citadel in which 
they were cooped up, into the champaign of a fair large 
field, where that excellent, solid, laborious man of God 
preached under a shady tree ; Mr. Heywood sitting in 
a chair, got an extreme cold, which made him suffer 
much afterwards. 

2. With respect to his disposition, he was naturally 
choleric, being of a sanguine complexion ; but such 
was the predominance of grace, that it did very little 
appear in him, being regulated and rectified by that 
sovereign corrective the fear of God ; which turned his 
natural disposition into a spiritual channel, and gave it 
a due bias to move God-wards. He was much under 
the influence of tender affections, where reason dis- 
covered the amiableness of the object. In his younger 
days he was judged to be inclined to melancholy, sitting 
sometimes silent, and poring on something ; and so he 
was in his last distemper. Yet at times he was very 
cheerful and facetious, throwing out harmless jests with 
much advantage, for his own and his friends' amuse- 
ment ; and this, (with recreating himself with his chil- 


dreii) was all the recreation that he used for many 
years. He was indeed very witty and ingenious, when 
he slacked the strings and unbent himself a little, 
which was very rarely ; his mind being ordinarily in- 
tent upon more important things in his study, or soul 

S. As to his entrance into the ministry, and his 
judgment in ecclesiastical points, he was (according to 
his education) a strict Presbyterian, avoiding both the 
extremes of prelatical tyranny on the one hand, and 
congregational democracy on the other. Upon his 
first settling at Ormskirk, he presently applied himself 
to the ministers of the class in that division where God 
had cast his lot ; and after probation and approbation 
of his ministerial abilities, learning, and fitness for the 
pastoral office at that place, and after the consent of 
the people had been expressed, he was solemnly set 
apart by fasting and prayer, and imposition of hands, 
to the work of the ministry, in a public congregation, 
to the great satisfaction of all that were concerned. 
The reverend, grave ministers that laid hands on him, 
were Mr. Thomas Johnson, of Halsall; Mr. Thompson, 
of Sefton ; Mr. Edward Gee, of Eccleston ; Mr. Bell, 
of Highton ; all worthy, eminent men ; and some 

4. In reference to his ministerial labours, I shall add 
little to what hath been said. He willingly did spend, 
and was spent in the service of his Lord and Master ; 
he prayed and wept, preached and laboured in public 
and private, in season and out of season ; he constantly 
preached twice a-day, catechised, exhorting, admonish- 
ing with all long-suffering: he spent much time in 
solemn fasting and prayer with christian friends in his 
parish, and elsewhere. He loved and delighted in the 
communion of saints, so that those few Christians, with 


whom he had been accustomed to hold intercourse, 
mournfully bewail the loss of him as their pastor and 
leader, their prompter to, and supporter in their spi- 
ritual exercises. His heart was set to do good unto 
all, but his delight was in God's children. He refused 
not to come and visit the poorest and most wicked, 
that either sent for him, or that he judged would make 
him welcome, or where he had any hopes of doing 
good. He was diligent in visiting the sick, and took 
great pains with the ignorant, procuring catechisms 
for them that were willing to learn, instructing them, 
and using ingenious artifices to bring them into a love 
of religion, and engaging young people to learn. 
' 5. He was exceedingly meek and patient, not only 
in bearing his bodily pains with an invincible spirit, 
but in enduring the affronts, reproaches, and various 
indignities that were offered him, with heroic cheer- 
fulness ; yea, he gloried in them as the afflictions of 
Christ. Notwithstanding all the forementioned opjio- 
sition, yet, his spirit was so sweetly calmed, that none 
ever heard him revile or speak evil of the instruments, 
but many have heard him pray for them ; it is true, 
his spirit was sometimes so disturbed, that he would 
dream of them, and mention them in his sleep ; but 
still he bore a compassionate heart towards them, and 
would often bewail their condition. Though some of the 
townsmen and others, thought some prosecutions were 
malicious and unreasonable, not fit to be named, yet 
he freely forgave all as an offence against himself, and 
affectionately prayed for their i-epentance and the par-, 
don of their sin against God ; oft saying, " If this or 
that be the worse they can do, we shall shift well 
enough." He had in some considerable degree, learned 
that hard lesson our Lord teacheth. Matt. v. 44, " But 
I say unto you, love your enemies, bless them that 


curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray 
for them which despitefully use you and persecute 
you." This, this is a great height of true Christianity, 
to do good, and endure evil ; bear our cross, and follow 
Christ with patience and self-denial. 

6. He was very faithful to his friends, and looked 
upon the bond of friendship as sacred, and not to be 
violated, whether in the business of counselling, or 
keeping secrets, or preserving and discharging the 
trust reposed in him ; nor was this unimportant, or 
from persons inconsiderable. He would put himself 
to much cost, many troubles, and some inconveniences, 
rather than seem by negligence to falsify his word, or 
in any respect to fail of his duty ; as many instances 
might prove. It was conscience of his duty towards 
God, that awed his spirit in those cases, wherein no 
mortal could detect or punish him for neglect. He 
was extremely obliging in his deportment, very en- 
gaging in his discourse among those with whom he 
could be free, instructing the ignorant, indulging the 
weak, by words or carriage manifesting his dislike of 
sin, but encouraging those that discovered any spark 
of true piety, however they might differ from him in 
some things ; for he was of a catholic spirit. 

7. He was very humble and self-denying, which was 
the fine ornament of all his other graces and eminent 
qualifications ; this indeed was his master-piece, he 
had always very mean thoughts of himself and his 
own undertakings, disrelishing others' commendations 
of him ; which indeed were to him instar fulminis^ 
like a thunderbolt, as a German divine said of men's 
praises ; yea, he would even cover his face with shame, 
and modestly blush, when any spoke well of him ; 
his maxim was rather to be, than seem good; not 
affecting triumphs (as Pompey did) but approving his 



heart to God ; being more pleased with God's gracious 
acceptance, and the consciousness of his own integrity, 
than aspiring at the favour of the great or the ap- 
plause of the vulgar ; though scarcely any had such 
general approbation or flocking after them ; yet his 
spirit was not elated or lifted therewith. In him was 
verified that observation, " That honour is like a sha- 
dow, which being pursued, flies away ; but the more 
a man flies from it, the more it follows him." He 
could never be persuaded to print any of his produc- 
tions, though he was often solicited to do this ; for he 
judged nothing that he did worthy of being exposed 
to public view ; he so far disliked the humour of osten- 
tation, that he abstained from doing that which might 
have been profitable to the church. Though his ser- 
mons were elaborate and judicious, yet they were full 
of pathos, which he desired to be conveyed only to the 
ears and hearts of his hearers. His modesty even 
locked up his lips in company, unless he had a just 
call to speak ; and he spoke with great discretion, and 
as much humility and submission to better judgments, 
but always with great advantage to his hearers. He 
was mild in his censure, and spoke well of the humble 
and well-meaning undertakings of others ; he com- 
mended all who in any thing were praiseworthy, and 
envied them not that honour which was due to them. 

8. He was much and mighty in prayer ; he had an 
excellent gift in confessing sin, petitioning for mercy, 
and thankfulness to God for mercies received. He did 
with applicable and proper scripture expressions wrestle 
with God in prayer : oh ! how frequently and fervently 
did he pour out his supplications before the Lord with 
sighs and tears and throbbings of heart. He had a 
large measure of the spirit of adoption, and was usually 
copious in the duty of prayer, especially upon extra- 


ordinary occasions. Though he had long used to go 
to God alone, yet in his last sickness he was more con- 
stant in closet prayer. His wife and children coming 
to him, have often found him upon his knees : and the 
Lord gave him many signal impressions upon his 
spirit, and remarkable returns of his prayers. Many 
years ago, when his wife was dangerously sick at 
Godley, in Yorkshire, nigh to death, he told her she 
must not die at that time ; she demanded of him, why 
he thought so ? He answered, " because my heart is 
much enlarged in prayer to beg for thy life ;" accord- 
ingly God raised her up at that period. And he hath 
oft taken notice of the frame of his spirit in prayer for 
sick persons ; and hath formed his opinions of the 
issue from his straitness, or his enlargedness, and it 
hath often proved according to his presages. 

9. He had a great measure of faith, both as to soul 
concerns, and temporal affairs. As to the former, God 
hath helped him in spiritual troubles to trust him in 
the way of a promise, and at last elevated his faith 
into a 'plerojihorij^ or full assurance. As to the latter, 
he was trained up in the life of faith many years ; 
having a wife, and nine small children, being turned 
out of all, having nothing before hand, and knowing 
not in an ordinary rational way, where his subsistence 
must arise ; all this put his faith hard to it : yet com- 
mitting himself and his family into God's hand, he 
was wonderfully supplied, as if he had been fed with 
ravens, or like Israel in the wilderness. O man ! great 
was thy faith ! O Lord ! great was thy bounty ! It 
is true, he was often afraid of being chargeable with 
discontent and murmuring ; but he summoned up his 
spirits, saying to his wife, " Let us pray and wait on 
God, he never failed us yet, come let us trust him ;" 
this he spake with great alacrity ; and he oft took 

LIFE or THE llEV. N. HEYWOOl). 491 

notice, that in extremities God sent a seasonable supply- 
by unexpected means ; help came in so strangely, that 
he resolved to set down punctually what he received, 
and of whom. He said once to a friend, "I cannot but 
wonder how God sends in money just as I need it, he 
drops it into my hand by sixpences and shillings most 
seasonably ; and the review of these circumstances 
much strengthens my faith, and engages me to thank- 
fulness." This course he had followed for above twelve 
years, and advised his friends to do the same. From 
multiplied providential interpositions he gathered great 
encouragement, he often wondered at the unaccomit- 
able provision God made for him and his. 

10. He was of an amiable temper, much disposed to 
peace, both in sacred and civil things. He was not 
willing to fall out with any, and it was strange if any 
fell out with him, for he gave no just occasion at any 
time. Testimonies and instances might be produced 
wherein he complied to the utmost extent of what he 
judged lawful, to avoid giving any offence, and some- 
times receded from his right for the sake of peace. It 
is true he was a man of contention, as the prophet 
Jeremiah was, but it was his grief and made him cry. 
Woe is me ! And besides, it was rather passively than 
actively that he was so ; men contended with him, 
rather than he with them, and it was in the matters 
of his God and conscience ; and he was resolved to 
obey and please God rather than men. In this he was 
as a sturdy oak, in other matters, a bending ozier. If 
any time he was angry at others, yet anger did not 
ferment into malice, or long rest in his bosom ; he 
sought reconciliation with them ; and if any had taken 
offence at him, he sought to win them by conciliatory 
means and methods of kindness ; yea, he was not only 
a peace-keeper, but a peace-maker to his power, recon- 


ciling neighbours that were at variance; not by sitting 
with them in the alehouse, (as the manner of some is) 
but by christian advice, counsel, and prayers, healing 
differences in God's way. He preached an excellent 
sermon upon mutual love, from Ephes. v. 2, an excel- 
lent duty, having an excellent pattern. In the manage- 
ment of this subject he discovered an admirable spirit, 
full of gentleness, sobriety, and moderation ; he sought 
to calm men's minds, and lay the the storm of passion, 
that the word might take place, for ''the fruit of 
righteousness is sown in peace of them that make 
peace," James iii. 18. 

11. But though he was of a peaceable spirit, con- 
descending to any thing lawful for the sake of peace, 
yet not so facile, flexible, and wire-like as to be drawn 
a hair's breadth from truth, or well-fixed principles ; 
he was magnes et aclamas, an attractive loadstone, yet 
an impenetrable adamant in the cause of God. He 
well understood his own latitude, and as he would not 
groundlessly withdraw under the influence of a volatile 
spirit, so he would not be led aside into sin to please 
a friend, or prostitute his conscience to men's fancies. 
Others might perhaps judge it a needless preciseness, 
perverseness, or obstinacy ; but he could not turn his 
sails to their wind, or dance after their pipes, though he 
had many temptations on all hands from great and 
small; but he was of blessed Paul's mind and practice. 
Gal. ii. 5, " To whom we gave place by subjection, no 
not for an hour ; that the truth of the gospel might 
continue with you." And if he died not a martyr for, 
yet a confessor of, and witness to, the truths that con- 
cern Christ's kingly office over his church, and espe- 
cially his right to appoint what laws, order, officers, 
and ordinances he pleaseth, as one of his last sermons 
abundantlv demonstrates : he was faithful unto death. 


and now receives a crown of life. It might be said of 
this man of God, as was said of Erasmus Sarcerius : 
" Lucebat in hoc viro commemorabilis gravitas et con- 
stantia, non minas, non exilia, non uUam ullius hominis 
potentiam aut vim pertimescebat. Pene dixerim, solem 
facilius de cursu dimoveri potuisse, quam Erasmum a 
veritatis professione.* — Melch. Ad. Vit. Sa7'C. p. 326. 
12. He made daily great proficiency in learning, grace, 
and holiness ; having laid a low foundation, he built a 
stately, visible superstructure. It might be said of him 
as the apostle said of the Thessalonians, "That his faith 
did grow exceedingly, and his love to Christians abound- 
ed."! The pearl grew too large for the shell ; his head 
soared above the clouds, and his heart mounted heaven- 
wards. And as he grew in faith, love, meekness, zeal for 
God, endearedness to souls ; so above all, in humility, 
self-denial, and contempt of the world ; as he travelled 
up and down to do good, so he travailed in birth over 
poor perishing sinners. Possibly some may think Mr. 
Hey wood took too much upon him, and was too sedu- 
lous in his indefatigable labours, both in the face of 
danger, and to the hazard of his health ; but as to the 
one, Calvin's apology was his, Wbtilcl you have me 
found idle when my Lord cometh f As to the former, 
his proceedings and conduct were sanctioned by a like in- 
stance in the life of Olevian, who asked the people. Whe- 
ther he must suspend, or supersede his preaching at that 
time for fear of danger ? Or, whether they desired to 
hear him as formerly? All the people with hands 
lifted up, and loud voices cried out, Imo hoc, imo hoc, 
et per Deum te oramus, ut per gas concionari.\ We 

* There appeared in this man an admirable steadiness and con- 
stancy which dreaded neither threats nor exile, nor any power or 
violence of man. I may almost say, that the sun mi^ht more easily 
be diverted from his course, than Erasmus from a declaration of 
the truth. t 2 Thess. i. 3. % Melch. Ad. Vit. Oliv. p. 600. 


beseech thee to preacli. Thus the necessities and im- 
portunity of the people extorted work from the subject 
of these memoirs ; his heart was upon it, and being 
engaged, he regarded not any plausible arguments de- 
duced from flesh and blood, or self-preservation. His 
last sermon preached at a friend's house in the parish, 
was a swan-like song, pithy and sententious, ardent 
and affectionate ; so that as before, he had exceeded 
others, he then exceeded himself; as if he previously 
knew that it was the last. Thus his last was more 
than his first ; and the nearer the centre, the quicker 
was his motion. He abounded in matter, as if he was 
at a loss for time for the remainder of his work, that 
he might despatch it all and be at rest. 

13. He was very charitable to the poor, and such as 
were in real necessity. And though his small revenue, 
and constant charge, did somewhat .bind his hands, 
yet he could not restrain his spirit ; he drew out his 
soul to the hungry. And indeed true charity is seated 
rather in an expansive heart, than a liberal hand ; the 
imprimis of a willing mind finds acceptance, when the 
items of alms run but shallow. And to his power, 
many will bear record ; yea, beyond his power he 
was willing ;* freely welcoming objects of pity, stirring 
up his hearers to free contributions, especially on be- 
half of the pious poor, whereby the bowels of many were 
refreshed by this brother. And hence it was, that as 
he had sowed bountifully, he did then, and much more 
doth now, reap bountifully ; " For the liberal soul shall 
be made fat ; and he that watereth, shall be watered 
also himself."! 

14. He was a great admirer, and an able preacher 
of the glorious gospel design, especially in the giving 
of Christ. And indeed this he made his rb loyov, the 

* 2 Cor. viii. 12, 3. t 2 Cor. ix. 6. Prov. xi. 2j. 


main scope of all his preaching. It is true, he did 
often preach law and terror to awaken men's consciences, 
and drive them out of themselves to Christ. He did 
often press duty in a circumspect, exact, and holy 
walking; and urged a spiritual, and diligent worship- 
ping of God ; but still demonstrating, that Christ is 
the end of the law for righteousness to every one that 
believeth.* It was his element, and most agreeable to 
his evangelical spirit to know and preach nothing but 
a crucified and glorified Redeemer. He enlarged much 
on the gospel mode of justifying a sinner, by the im- 
putation of Christ's perfect righteousness through faith.f 
His active thoughts ran still upon this theme, sleeping, 
and waking ; so that once, many years ago, he was 
heard in his dream to say, there are vast heaps of free 
grace. His heart was greatly enamoured with the 
love of God in sending Christ ; as appeared to the satis- 
faction, profit, and wonder of many, from a sermon he 
preached the year in which he died, on Rom, v. 8. 
This was the proper sphere in which he moved ; and 
few dived so deep into that unfathomable ocean of love 
which passeth knowledge, as he did.ij: 

15. He was a zealous defender of truth, and im- 
pugner of errors ; he strenuously " contended for the 
faith once delivered to the saints." || He much delight- 
ed in the form of wholesome words, and loved not 
new coined phrases, which are apt to amuse men's 
minds, and instil into them poisonous principles. He 
loved and used sound speech that cannot be condemned, 
as well as sound orthodox truth ; standing at an equal 
distance from Arminians on the one hand, and Anti- 
nomians on the other. He had a wonderful sagacity 
in discerning persons, things, and doctrines that swerved 
from, or agreed not with the scripture dialect. He 
* Rom. X. 4. t 1 Cor. ii. 2. :j; Eph. iii. 19. !| Jude, 3. 


kept close to the analogy of faith ; yet he was not 
against proficiency, or cautious extension of knowledge. 
He had well studied the Arminian controversy, and 
told some friends, that if the Lord should recover him, 
and lengthen out his life, he had a design to write 
something on that subject, which might, perhaps, have 
given further light in the controversy. For as his genius 
led him that way, so he had the advantage of many 
years' intimate converse with that aged and learned 
divine, Mr. Thos. Johnson, of Halsall, a man of great 
ability, and unwearied application to study, a non-such 
on those points ; but he told Mr. Hey wood his intimate 
friend, that it much repented him, because he had spent 
so much time in reading books, and studying contro- 
versies, which might have been more profitably era- 
ployed in conversing with, and instructing his ignorant 
and worldly minded neighbours. Let ministers think 
of this, for one soul won to God by personal conference, 
will tend more to God's glory, and a minister's comfort, 
than a thousand notions obtained by reading. Howbeit, 
a due mixture of a contemplative and active life, must 
needs be the best. 

16. He was exemplary in his relative connections. 
He was an obedient child, an exceedingly kind husband, 
an indulgent tender-hearted father, an affectionate mas- 
ter, a faithful friend. He maintained a paternal awe, 
authority, gravity, mixed with gentleness and lenity, 
and both with incredible prudence, so that those con- 
nected with him, had not occasion either to slight him, 
or to be discouraged by him. He instructed them with 
faithfulness ; admonished them with tenderness ; prayed 
for them with faith and fervency, and walked before 
them with a holy exemplariness and sincerity. As 
God had made him a Nathaniel, God wards ; so he was 
a Joshua, resolving that " he and his house should 


serve the Lord."* It is a true maxim, that he who is 
not relatively good, is not really good ; but he was 
faithful in the discharge of duty in every relation. He 
kept his children much at home, being very jealous 
lest they should meet with temptations abroad, which 
occasioned many cares and prayers about their dis- 

17. He attained to a considerable measure of assur- 
ance. Though he had walked in darkness, and saw 
no light in his first convictions ; yet staying himself 
on the Lord his God, he at- last shone upon his soul with 
the light of his countenance, and he walked many days 
through much darkness with the candle of God shining 
upon his head, f How frequently in prayer did he 
express his joy and gratitude for everlasting conso- 
lation and good hopes through grace relative to his 
own salvation ! But the infinitely wise God, after 
he had enjoyed many delightful days, thought fit to 
withdraw his wonted religious enjoyments, and left 
him under some doubts and dissatisfaction. For, about 
two months before he died, one Lord's day, as he and 
his family were sitting together, he told his wife with 
tears in his eyes, that he had great trouble concerning 
his spiritual state, and some doubts about his condi- 
tion, desiring her to pray for him. Yet the Lord dis- 
pelled those dark clouds, and in due time did graciously 
shine into his soul with the beams of his love. Thus 
God is a free agent, and doth not always entail comfort 
upon sincerity, but sometimes the best of God's chil- 
dren suffer eclipses : such sad days, however, lead to 
self-searching and deeper humiliation, and such sliak- 
ings tend to firmer establishment ; yea, such discou- 
ragements are often attended with more enlargement, 
such dark spots in a Christian's evidences produce 
* Josh. xxiv. 15. t Isa. 1. 10. Job xxix. 3. 

VOL. I. 2 K 


more clearing of tliem up. God hereby hath more 
glory, and heaven will be sweeter. 

18. He had a strong persuasion of God's care of his 
numerous family, both in point of education and pro- 
vision. As God had mercifully looked after them in 
his lifetime, so he conceived great hopes of their sup- 
ply after his decease. It is true, he had some tempta- 
tions, and sad thoughts of heart concerning them ; but 
at last faith gained the victory over unbelief, and hav- 
ing left his mournful partner with her better husband, 
and his fatherless children with their heavenly parent, 
he was tranquil, and these thoughts did not prevent 
his cordial welcome of his dearest Lord, when he sum- 
moned him by death. He had by faith and prayer 
devolved the care of them upon the Lord, and he freely 
acquiesced in his good providence about himself and 
them. On Tuesday before he died, getting into his bed, 
his breath being very short, his wife broke out into 
sore weeping ; to whom he said, "Be not troubled, God 
will provide necessaries for thee and thy posterity for 
ever :" M'hich brings to mind the anecdote of Bucer, 
who dying, stretched out his hand, with his eyes lift 
up to heaven, saying, Ille, ille regit et moderatur om- 
nia — " He, he alone rules and governs all things :" and 
the event in the present instance hath abundantly 
answered the good man's prediction and expectation. 

19. It is remarkable that he had his desire in a 
leisurely, lingering death. He had often expressed 
his willingness (if that were God's will) that death 
might come on gradually, and not surprize him ; he 
even prayed that he might be long in his sickness, and 
also that he might be sensible to the last : the Lord 
condescended to hear him in both these things. He 
liad been long habitually prepared, but he desired to be 
actually ready : for it is an important concern to die 


and go into another world, a world of spirits. This 
good man had frequent warnings, and continued 
strong in his intellect all the time of his illness. On 
Friday night, his brother-in-law coming to him, asked 
him if he had made his will ; he answered, no : he de- 
sired to have his son Nathaniel at home when he did 
that. But he perceiving that he was weakening 
apace, and that his time would not be long, being 
urged again, he willingly consented, and sent for a 
clerk, and despatched that worldly concern the same 
night ; then he was in perfect composedness of mind, 
there being but one night more intervening before his 

20. As he was highly qualified with personal accom- 
plishments, christian graces, and ministerial abilities, 
so God gave him favour in the sight of all with whom 
he had intercourse. It is true, he had adversaries, but 
it was for the matters of his God, wherein his prin- 
ciples led him to act differently from them ; yet even 
those commended him for his abilities and preaching. 
At death, some that had been bitter enemies to him, 
were well reconciled to him ; one instance was very 
remarkable, a Mr. Brownlow, an old gentleman, that 
lived in the town, had conceived a bitter grudge 
against Mr. Heywood, after king Charles's return, 
because he would not read the common prayer ; but on 
his death-bed he sent for Mr. Heywood, and entreated 
him to go to prayer with him ; and when Mr. A. the 
vicar, would have come to read the common prayer, 
he would not suffer him ; but would not part with Mr. 
Heywood while he lived. 

Thus I have given a brief narrative of what was 
memorable in this holy man of God, and imitable by 
us ; I may say to every one, " Go thou and do like- 
wise." Let Christians pray that God would send forth' 

^ K 9, 

«v Xi ^ 


many such labourers into his harvest and succeed their 
labours, and let them learn to improve svich advan- 
tages, that they may give a good account of them at 

A Letter sent by Mr. Nathaniel Heywood to a Chris- 
tian Friend, on the Death of his pious Wife. 

Dear Friend, May 1st, 1675. 

I received yours of Jan. .SOth, long since, and 
would have answered it much sooner, but that I had 
some intentions, and was not without hopes, of accom- 
plishing them, not by writing, but by coming to you 
at your appointed time in March last ; but being pre- 
vented, and now having such pains of body, through 
my old disorder, which makes me very incapable of 
riding far, that I am not certain of seeing you this 
summer, though I propose and shall endeavour after 
it ; I can now forbear writing no longer, nor can I 
further delay that which I account my duty, till I 
come over ; I give you hearty thanks for your kind 
a] id valuable letter, whereby I was much refreshed in 
those my late troubles, which indeed were many and 
heavy ; yet in such a cause, and for such a Master did 
I suffer, that I must needs say, they were light and 
easy. Oh ! that God may have the glory, and others 
be encouraged ! As sufferings for Christ did abound, 
so consolations abounded by Christ. Let the world 
know, that suffering for Christ is the very element in 
which love liveth and exerciseth itself and his choicest 
cordials are reserved for such a time. I was in a great 
measure a stranger to the comforts and sweetness of 


Christianity, till I was singled out to bear the cross ; 
but am now well satisfied, that what I have suffered 
and still do suffer for, is Christ's truth ; because he 
was pleased to seal my sufferings with the sweet sense 
and experience of unspeakable joy and peace ; and I 
know he will not put his seal to a blank paper, nor will 
he be a witness to a falsehood. Had not some great 
persons interposed by their interest and authority, I 
had certainly gone to prison at that time when I was 
taken by soldiers : and at the sessions shortly after, 
had not God raised up other friends, (some of them 
Justices) to frustrate the purpose and design of my 
cruel enemies, who would have sent me six months to 
prison the sessions before, for living within five miles 
of this town ; yea, would have convicted me among 
recusants, for not coming to this church — my lot would 
have been imprisonment ; but it pleased God by a 
special providence, to prevent that also. But, alas ! 
all these troubles are nothing to what I am now 
mourning under, the loss of public liberty ; to have a 
closed mouth, dumb and silent sabbaths ; to be cast 
out of the vineyard as a dry and withered branch, and 
to be laid aside as a broken vessel, in which there is no 
pleasure — is a sore burden which I know not how to 
bear, my heart bleeds under it as giving a sting and 
edge to my other troubles and afflictions. This exer- 
cise of my ministry, next to Christ, is dearer to me 
than any thing in the world. It was my heaven, till 
I reach home, even to spend this life in gathering souls 
to Christ ; but I must lay even that down at Christ's 
feet, and be dumb and silent before the Lord, because 
he has done it who can do no wrong, and whose judg- 
ments are past finding out. I am sure I have reason 
to conclude with the prophet, " I will bear the indig- 
nation of the Lord, because I have sinned against him." 

502 LIFE or THE llEV. n. iieywood. 

Dear Brother, 

I hear that it hatli pleased God to remove from 
you the desire of your eyes, and my dear friend. I am 
heartily sorry for that sore breach in your family, and 
desire to suffer with you in the loss of your loving and 
good wife, now gone before (according to the method 
and order he hath appointed, whose vmderstanding is 
infinite) wliither you are shortly to follow. He that 
made yesterday to go before this day, and the former 
generation in birth and life to have been before this 
generation, and hath made some flowers to grow, and 
to wither, and to die in May, and others in June — 
cannot be challenged in the order he observes with us, 
that one bury another. You know who said, " I was 
dumb and opened not my mouth, because thou. Lord, 
didst it." All things are ordered in wisdom and judg- 
ment by your Father ; at whose feet your own soul 
and your heaven lieth, and so the days of your wife. 
You had her as long as your lease lasted, and seeing 
her term was come, and your lease run out, you can no 
more justly quarrel with the great Sovereign for tak- 
ing his own at his just term-day, than a poor farmer 
can complain that his master takes a portion of his 
own land to himself when the lease is expired. And 
is not he an ill debtor who payetli that which he hath 
borrowed, with a grudge ? Certainly the long loan of 
such a good wife, an heir of grace, and member of 
Christ, (as verily I believe) deserveth thanks rather 
than grief and murmuring, when he calleth back his 
own. I believe you would judge them to be but un- 
thankful neighbours, who would pay you back a sum 
of money after this manner. I know you would be 
sorry either to be or to be esteemed any thing like an 
atheist ; and yet not I, but the apostle (1 Thess. iv. 13.) 
thinks those to be hopeless atheists, who mourn exces- 


sively for the dead. But this is not a charge on my 
part ; some jealousy I have, lest you be overmuch 
grieved for the loss of such a help-meet ; but you have 
reason to rejoice, that when a part of you is on earth, 
another part of you is glorified in heaven, sleeping in 
the bosom of the Almighty : follow her, but envy her 
not. For indeed it is self-love in us that maketh us 
mourn for them that die in the Lord ; because for 
them we cannot mourn, since they are never happy till 
they be dead, therefore we mourn for our own iwivate 
loss. Take heed then, that in pretending your affec- 
tion in mourning for your wife, you act out of self- 
affection ; consider what the Lord is doing in it ; she 
is plucked out of the fire, and resteth from her labours; 
and the Lord in that is trying you, and casting you 
into the fire, beholding your faith and patience, and 
delighting to see you in the burning bush and not con- 
sumed ; but sending Satan away frustrate of his de- 
sign. The Lord is laying in one scale of the balance, 
your making conscience of submission to his gracious 
will ; and in the other, your affection for your wife : 
which of the two will you then make to preponderate ? 
I wish you may come out of the Lord's school wiser 
and more experienced in the ways of God. It is our 
happiness that when Christ openeth a vein, he taketh 
nothing but ill blood from his sick patients ; and when 
he puts them into the furnace of affliction (and stands 
by the melting of the metal) he takes away the dross and 
scum that remained in nature. But it is a sad thing 
when the rod is cursed, that never fruit shall grow on 
it ; and except Christ's dew fall down with his summer 
sunshine, and his grace follow afflictions, to make 
them to bring forth fruit unto God, they are so be- 
withered to us, that our bad ground (rank and fertile 
enough for briars) produceth a crop of noisome weeds. 


I am persuaded your losses, cares, sicknesses, &c. are 
but summer showers that will wet your garments for 
an liour or two, and the sun of the new Jerusalem 
shall quickly dry your wet clothes, especially since 
the rain of affliction cannot stain the image of God, 
nor cause grace to cast its colour. Oh ! learn heavenly 
wisdom, self-denial, and mortification by this sad loss. 
I know it is not for nothing, (except you deny God to 
be wise in all that he doth) that you have lost your 
partner on the earth. It may be, there hath been too 
little of your heart and love in heaven ; and therefore 
the jealousy of Christ hath done this ; it is a mercy 
that he contendeth with you ; it may be, he hath either 
been out of his place, or in a place inferior to his 
worth. O let Christ have the room of you wife ; she 
hath now no need of you, or your love ; she enjoyeth 
as much of the love of Christ as her heart can be capa- 
ble of. I know it is a dear bought experience to teach 
you to undervalue the creature ; yet it is not too dear 
if Christ think so. Let me entreat you to consider 
one thing more (which hath helped me in such like 
cases more than once,) and I have done : you are 
hasting after your wife, and shall shortly be with her; 
it is but a little while, a few days longer, and you 
must follow her into eternity. By her death take 
occasion to love the world less, out of which she was 
taken, and heaven more, whither she is gone before 
you, and where you shall for ever enjoy her society, 
and be with Christ, which is best of all. If the place 
she hath left were any other than a prison of sin, and 
the home she is gone to were any other than a palace 
of glory, your grief would be the more rational. But, 
I hope, your faith in the resurrection of the dead in 
Christ to glory and immortality, will lead you to dry 
up your tears, and suspend your longing for hei', till 


the morning of that day, when the Archangel shall 
descend with a shout, to gather all his prisoners out 
of their graves up to himself in heaven. — Dear love 
to, and fervent prayers for, you and your children. 
I am, 

Your most affectionate. 

And sympathizing Friend, 













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ISiograpf)ical ^kctcljcjs 


2 L 2 


Faithful ministers are styled the chariots and horsemen of 
Israel ; these are the watchmen of the city that give warning 
of danger, intercede with the Lord ; and doubtless the church 
of God must receive great detriment, by the removal of such 
worthies. It is a saying of the Jewish Rabbins, Quando lutni- 
naria patiuntur eclipsin, malum est signum mundo. When the 
heavenly luminaries are eclipsed, it is a dreadful presage of ap- 
proaching evil to this lower world. The church in these dis- 
tricts hath been successively blessed with famous ministers, and 
gracious Christians, whose praise is in the churches of Christ ; 
many of whom now sleep in the Lord ; yet through God's wise 
care for the preservation of the churches, not a few are springing 
up in their room as hopeful slips ; on whom and the people sur- 
viving, I would here take occasion to drop a word of counsel. 

1. You that are expected to succeed this old stock of preachers, 
worn or wearing out, look to your planting in Christ ; let your 
own souls be duly engrafted into the true vine ; presume not to 
be ministers before you be Christians ; get experience of divine 
truths in your own hearts, and transcribe them in your daily 
practice ; believe, repent, obey yourselves, or you will teach 
these things badly and unconcernedly ; whatever your gifts be, 
see you have sincere grace, and dedicate your all to God ; you 
serve a holy God, you preach a holy gospel, you have before 
you holy examples, be you also holy in every change, in all 
circumstances. Aaron"'s ornaments signified nothing, if holi- 
ness to the Lord was not written upon his forehead on a plate 
of gold ; if you had profound genius and learning, tenacious 
memories, extraordinary elocution, so that you could speak 
with the toncjues of men and angels, all is of no worth without 
grace witliin, and vmiversal sanctity ; one allowed sin will worm- 
eat the goodliest trees, and blast the most pleasant fruits. Some 
ministers are eminent for one rare gift, others for different ac- 
complishments ; all have some, few have all ; some modest 
young men look upon themselves as much behind others, and 
are apt to be discouraged; my advice to such is, to make 
up their deficiency in diligence, in holiness, and in faithfulness. 
When nature or art denies any thing, seek after an equivalent 
from additional supplies of grace. Grace witliin, vigorously 


exercised, the assisting grace of God procured by faith and 
prayer will avail much ; be faithful to what you have, if you 
cannot attain much ; that is, a fine saying of Luther''s, and 
shall be my motto, " I desire to be fovmd a faithful minister of 
Christ and his church, if I cannot be wise or skilful." Let not 
inability, discourage you ; some ordinary men of humble gifts, 
may honour God more than some famous learned doctors. Be 
industrious in your studies; daily improve your talents, you have 
more helps than your predecessors ; give not occasion for the 
complaint of that Hebrew Rabbi, that the father had plowed, 
sown, reaped, winnowed the wheat, and set bread on tlie table, 
but that the children had no appetite. The greatest abilities 
may rust away from idleness ; but the feeblest grow bright and 
useful by diligent improvement ; the diligent hand with God's 
blessing makes rich ; but be sure you keep humble, despise not, 
but reverence your forefathers ; if you surpass their attainments 
in literature in some points, it will be well if you fall not below 
them in real worth, as to the power of godliness ; read their 
lives in Mr. Clarke's collection, especially the last volume printed 
since his death, and be dissatisfied with yourselves, and excited 
to a holy emulation in true piety and zeal ; get into retirement, 
mourn to see yourselves thus outstript, and implore more grace 
from heaven. 

I have but a word to say concerning this narrative, the life 
of this holy man of God ; I confess many discouragements lay in 
the way of this undertaking, not necessary now to be named ; 
the principal was : That we w ere not capable of doing any thing 
worthy of him, and it is better do nothing at all, than not to 
the purpose, or not adequately ; but my answer is, that of the 
Poet Lucan, 

" Quod si digna tua minus est mea pagina, laude, 
At voluisse sat est." 

And, " dlfficilmm faciUs est venia ;'" if I am not able to 
make a fine portrait, exhibiting all the features graceftiUy ; it 
may be, this rough sketch may exceed some of our attainments, 
may excite us to imitation, and some way tend to the glory of 
our great Master ; and then I gain my object. If any say, it 
is imperfectly done, and might have been done better ; I con- 
fess it, and let them contribute something to mend it ; but this 
is the best we can produce, according to our information ; and 
if we cannot bring a lamb, our two turtle doves may be accepted 
both by God and man. May the infinite, omnipotent, faith- 
ful God, send labourers into the harvest, supply vacancies, 
second his servants' efforts with his blessing, and continue his 
church, ministry, and presence with these nations to the end of 
the world. Amen. 




Minister of ihc Gospel, al Denton* 

Mr. John Angieh was born at Dedham, in Essex, of pious 
parents, and was baptized there, October 8tli, 1605. He was 
carefully instructed by his parents betimes, in the principles of 
religion, and educated in school learning in the same place ; 
being apt and capable from his childhood, he was much in- 
clined to his book, and very desirous of being trained up for 
the ministry, which he made his early choice, as appears from 
the following anecdote, which I have heard confidently related 
by credible persons. As this John, (who was the first-born 
son, named after his father,) with his three brethren, Bczaleel, 
Samuel, and Edmund, were coming from school to their father's 
house, there fell a shower of rain ; they all ran under a tree in 
a hedge for shelter ; standing there and seeing it rain apace, 
they began to make their several wishes : one wished it would 
rain learning ; another, wool ; another, money ; and another, 
plums : thus pleasing themselves with their juvenile fancies ; 
which options, manifested their different inclinations, and be- 
came presages of their future disposal. For a neighbour over- 
hearing them, acquainted their father, who calling them to him, 
examined them one by one, saying, John, what did you wish 
it might rain at such a time, in such a place H He was then 
something abashed and loth to answer, but being further urged, 
said. Sir, I wished it would rain learning. Why ? said his 
father, what profession wouldst thou be of .^ he answered, I 
would be a preacher. Come, Beza, said the father, what didst 
thou wish it would rain .'* he answered, wool. Why ? said he, 
what calling wouldst thou choose ? he answered, 1 would be of 
your calling, a clothier. Samuel, said the father, what hadst 
thou a mind it would rain ? He answered, money, for I have a 
mind to be a merchant. And lastly, calling Edmund, demand- 
» This Life of Mr. Angier, -ivas written liy Mr. O. Heywood. 


ing the same, he answered, tliat he desired it might rain 
plums, for he would choose to be a grocer. The father being 
an intelligent, considerate man, thus ascertained every one's 
genius ; and being furnished with a competent estate, adapted 
their callings according to their wishes. Bezaleel was a rich 
clothier in Dedham, and a gracious man ; he died October, 30, 
1678. Samuel, the third son, being brought up a merchant, 
lived in good repute in Holland, and there died in March, 16C7. 
Edmund, the youngest, being bound apprentice to a grocer at 
Cambridge, went into New England, and is the only survivor; 
he has many years kept a grocer's shop in that country, and I 
suppose is living at present. 

But to return to the eldest son John, the subject of this 
memoir. Being trained up a scholar, he proved of singular 
service as an instrument in advancing the glory of God, and 
promoting the spiritual welfare of others in his generation. And 
thus they all answered the purpose of their education, and were 
successful ; a good admonition to parents in disposing of their 
children, rather to consult their children's capacities and in- 
clinations, than their own humours and conveniences ; things 
do always best when voluntarily chosen ; when the stream of 
natural inclination runs through the channel of an adopted 
vocation, it bears down all opposition, and attains the desired 
object in the most arduous enterprises ; hence Dr. Harris saith, 
lie never attempted any thing within the verge of his calling, 
though it seemed difficult at the entrance, but with God's bless- 
ing on his industrious prosecution, he found it feasible and easy; 
but nil invitd Minerva, that which is attempted against the 
heart, or without an adequate capacity, goes on heavily, and 
seldom renders a man fit to manage his calling to purpose, or 
arrive at any eminence in it, because it goeth against the grain ; 
Athenians therefore acted wisely, who brought their youth into 
a place where utensils for every calling were laid up, that 
making their choice from them, each might have the calling he, 
in this way, had chosen. 

And as his proficiency at school was according to his time, so di- 
vine grace did early begin to touch and affect the heart of our 
young Timothy, who from a child had known the holy scriptures;* 
for at twelve years of age, the Lord reached his conscience, 
with some rays of illumination and darts of conviction, which 
produced more effect through Mr. Rogers' ministry after his fa- 
ther's death; but from his first convictions, he had much trouble 
upon his spirit, which he kept in a great measure to himself, 
and often retired privately, being ashamed that any one shquld 
* 2 Tim. iii, 15. 


know of his distress of mind. His mother being an excellent 
and gracious Christian, often spoke to him of soul concerns, 
wept and prayed much for him. At a competent age his fa- 
ther sent him to the University of Cambridge ; he was admitted 
in Emanuel College, where, notv/ithstanding his pious educa- 
tion, and hopeful impressions, before mentioned, he fell off to 
vain company and loose practices, (see the slipperiness of youth !) 
to the great grief of his parents, and his own present guilt and 
subsequent bitterness in the review. There he continued, and 
commenced Bachelor of Arts, before his father's death ; who 
being sick, sent for him to come home from Cambridge, but he 
came so late, that in the afternoon as he approached towards 
Dedham he met the people going from his father's funeral, 
which made a very deep impression upon him ; and God took 
hold of this occasion more effectually to awaken his conscience, 
and alarm him respecting his duty. 

Mr. Angier war; kept a season at his mother's house, followed 
his studies, and attended to Mr. Rogers' ministry : this Mr. 
John Rogers, of Dedham, was a prodigy of zeal and success in 
his ministerial labours ; it was wont to be said, Come, let us 
go to Dedham to get a little fire. He was lecturer there, and 
preached once on the Lord's day, and a lecture on the Tuesday, 
to which multitudes of people flocked from the parts adjacent ; 
and his plain preaching was blessed with a large harvest. How- 
ever, some expressions and gestures he used, would now seem 
unbecoming ; yet the gravity of the man, and the general reve- 
rence people had for him, rendered them not only not offensive, 
but sometimes they produced wonderful effect : his taking hold 
of the supporters of the canopy over the pulpit with both hands 
at one time, and roaring hideously, to represent the torments 
of the damned, had an awakening force attending it. Mr. 
Thomas Goodwin, afterwards Dr. Goodwin, when a Fellow at 
Cambridge, and an eminent preacher, occasionally hearing Mr. 
Rogers, fell under such convictions, that he afterwards pro- 
fessed, that he looked on himself neither as a Christian, nor a 
preacher before. The following relation Mr. Angier hath 
often repeated, Mr. Rogers being called to preach a marriage 
sermon, I think insisted on the wedding garment ; God made 
the word so effectual, that the marriage solemnity was turned 
into bitter mourning, so that the ministers who were at the mar- 
riage were employed in comforting or advising those whose 
consciences had heen awakened by that sermon. O blessed 
espousals between Christ and souls ! such sorrow was better than 
carnal mirth, and laid a solid foundation for spiritual joy. A 
gentlewoman who had travelled ton miles to hear plain and 


powerful Mr. Rogers, being in great trouble of conscience, 
desired some conference with him ; and after she had related 
her condition, telling long and sad stories of her wicked heart, 
deplorable state, God's wrath due to her, danger of dropping 
into hell, &c. the good old man, hearing all this, at last started 
up, and pacing across the floor, cried out, God be thanked, 
God be thanked ; the gentlewoman thought the old man mad, 
and was strangely surprised to see him rejoice in her sorrow ; 
but he knew what he said, and rejoiced in that sorrow, which 
was the seed of a blessed harvest ; for that gentlewoman proved 
an eminent saint, and an amiable consort in exile and tribula- 
tion to a very holy and eminent minister of Christ. 

After attending Mr. Rogers'" lecture, while others stayed, con- 
versed, and despatched business, it was Mr. Angler's custom to 
go home to his chamber to meditate, and pray, and apply the 
sermon to his heart for about an hour, and thus imprinted it so 
lastingly upon his memory, that he never forgot many passages ; 
and by the time that the family had got home, he was ready to 
take his dinner with them. 

He lived a season at Mv. Rogers' house, who sometimes put 
him upon praying in the family, which he performed with so 
much experience, humility, and feeling, that Mr. Rogers would 
often co"mmend him, and say to his friends, this Mr. Angier 
will make an excellent man in his generation. Another season, 
he was with one Mr. Witham, whom I have often heard him 
commend as a great scholar, and an intelligent man, though 
not so successful in his ministry as a neighbouring minister of 
far inferior abilities ; one being asked the reason, answered, 
there were too many for God to work by. I know some say, 
it was ]\Ir. Hooker's expression relative to the famous Mr. 
Richardson, on the same account; alluding to Gideon's first 
army, of which God said, " The people that are with thee are 
too many for me to give the Midianites into their hands ;"* 
but to whomsoever it was applied, the lesson is useful, to con- 
vince us of the Lord's sovereignty in owning or disowning the 
ministry of men ; and his wisdom, lest too much should be 
ascribed to them, and God should lose his glory. 

After this, his dear mother being tender of her son's spiritual 
good, consulted with her christian friends how to dispose of 
him ; she was one of a thousand for grace, holiness, and cha- 
rity, saying, she would not have her hand out of a good work. 
Oh, the prayers and tears she poured out for all her children, 
but especially for her son John, not only because he was her first- 
born, but chiefly because he was devoted to God's special work 

* Judges vii. 2. 


in the ministry, and because of his former baekslidings, and 
her jealousy over him for the future. On consultation with 
friends, and begging advice from God, she being afraid to send 
him again to Cambridge, resolved to send him to Mr. John 
Cotton, at Boston, in Lincolnshire, where he boarded, studied, 
and sometimes preached; there he contracted an intimate 
friendship v/ith those three divines. Dr. Tuckney, Dr. Hill, 
and Dr. Winter : Mr. Anthony Tuckney was Fellov/ of 
Emanuel, and so continued a good while, till he was called to 
be vicar of Boston ; he was a serious, decided good man before 
he went to Boston ; he was afterwards Master of Emanuel, 
and after that of St. John's, Cambridge. And for Mr. Thomas 
Hill, Dr. Preston, when Mr. Hill was Bachelor of Arts, intend- 
ing to make him Fellow, sent him to Mr. Cotton for some time, 
and when he returned from thence, chose him Fellow, designing 
to ascertain his settled seriousness in religion before his election ; 
for which he thought Mr. Cotton's family might be conducive, 
and so it proved ; afterwards Dr. Hill was Master of Trinity- 
College, Cambridge, and Dr. Winter, Master of Trinity-Col- 
lege, Dublin ; all famous lights in the chm*ch of God ; Mr. 
Angier survived them all. 

And by the way, it will not be thought censurable to digTcss 
a little, and give a few particulars concerning ]\Ir. Cotton, that 
reverend and worthy man, for though his life was written at 
large by a New England minister, and Mr. Samuel Clarke 
afterwards gave extracts out of it : yet some things Mr. Angier 
hath occasionally mentioned of him to a few of his brethren, 
which may not be uninteresting : Though Mr. Cotton was an 
excellent text man, yet he would never deliver his judgment 
concerning the sense of a scripture, till he had first consulted 
both the original and context ; an excellent pattern. Mr. 
Angier hath sometimes related to his intimate friends, that Mr. 
Cotton never went into his study after having been called out on 
any occasion, but he began his studies again with prayer. 

When I was travelling in Cheshire with Mr. Angier, where 
the roads were exceedingly deep and foul, after he had told me 
that Mr. R