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dee for a short time; but however will completely accounts for the conduct of ing to wound, their antagonists were as that deep-thinking and far-seeing man, yet afraid to strike, and the prosecution during his stay in Scotland, and after his was allowed to drop.
return to England, in his public treatAn Assembly was appointed to meet at ment of the former country. Having St. Andrews in July, whence it was trans- made his observations, and formed his ferred to Dundee; but intimation was at plans, Cromwell proceeded to put them in the same time given, that all who were execution. not satisfied with the resolutions should Charles had taken up a strong position be cited to the General Assembly, as lia- in the vicinity of Stirling, which the proble to censure. This rendered the Protector perceived it would be dangerous to testers incapable of being members, was a assail. He therefore turned the position virtual prejudging of the question between of the king's army by crossing the Firth them and their brethren, and completely at Queensferry; and marching northvitiated the character of the Assembly as wards, seized upon Perth, and cut the a deliberate body. Against this course king off from his supplies. Charles reof procedure the Protesters again pro- solved upon a daring and césperate attested, denying the freedom and lawful- tempt to gain or lose the whole kingdom. ness of the Assembly itself. For this, He broke up from his camp at Stirling, James Guthrie, Patrick Gillespie, and and marched with all the expedition in James Simpson were deposed; but, pro- his power into England, hoping that the testing against this sentence, they con- royalists there would rise and join him tinued to discharge their ministerial func- before Cromwell could approach. But tions.
they were too much dispirited to make The small western army was sup- the attempt; and Charles was overtaken pressed by Cromwell without difficulty; and defeated at Worcester, on the 3d of and Strachan, one of its leaders, a man September 1651, exactly a year after the of unstable mind, joined the usurper. battle of Dunbar. The king fled, and, While in Glasgow, Cromwell attended the after a number of perilous adventures, churches of some of the Presbyterian escaped to France, to mourn his blighted ministers, who did not hesitate to pray for hopes, or rather to waste his unhonoured the king, and to term the protector a youth in dissipation and licentiousness. usurper to his face. Some of his Inde- Cromwell did not think it necessary to pendent preachers held a disputation in return to complete the subjugation of his presence with the Presbyterian minis- Scotland, but left that task, no longer a ters, on the principles of church govern- difficult one, to General Monk. ment, to which that singular man listened [1652.] The unhappy contest between with great apparent interest. It is prob- the Resolutioners and the Protesters conably that the Protector's intention in thus tinued to divide the Church so completely, entering into personal and familiar con- that it no longer presented a rallying tact with the people, and especially with point for either of the political parties. the ministers of Scotland, was for the pur- The Resolutioners were the more numerpose of obtaining the means of forming ous; but the Protesters were favoured by his opinion respecting their character and the English, so that their power reprinciples on the sure ground of his own mained nearly balanced. An Assembly penetrating discernment. He knew that was attempted to be held at Edinburgh the king and his party could not be in July 1652, the Resolutioners assuming trusted; and he was anxious to ascertain the right of calling, constituting, and conwhether the other party, though opposed ducting it, which was opposed by the to him in many points, might not be so Protesters, with a new protestation, subfar conciliated as to submit peacefully to scribed by sixty-five ministers and about his government when they should per- eighty elders. After spending about a ceive resistance to be hopeless. That fortnight in useless altercations, it disthis was the real design of Cromwell, it solved, and its acts were not recorded. * would be hazardous to affirm; but the [1653.] Another attempt was made to conjecture has this to recommend it, that hold an Assembly at Edinburgh in July
† Lamont's Diary, p. 40.
Lamont's Diary, p. 55.
Cruickshank, vol. i. p. 63.
1653, but Lieutenant-Colonel Cottrel, at the students and the young preachers to the head of a body of troops, entered the espouse his party. Rutherford was prohouse where the ministers were assem- fessor of theology at St. Andrews, where bled, demanded on whose authority they his influence was still more direct and exmet,-—whether that of Charles or the pro- tensive. Even at Aberdeen, a large protector? and, after the interchange of a portion of the young aspirants to the few sentences with the moderator, Mr. D. ministry attached themselves to the party Dickson, ordered them to leave the house, of the Protesters. In this manner the led them through the streets surrounded youth and growih of the Church was diby a band of soldiers, till he had con- rected in a very decided manner to that ducted them a mile out of town; and then party which was unquestionably the most commanded them to depart to their re- distinguished for piety and zeal; which spective homes within the course of a day, was another preparative for the great apotherwise they should be held guilty of proaching trial. a breach of the peace, and liable to pun- [1655.) Another circumstance which ishment. In this manner was the Ĝen-contributed not a little to strengthen the eral Assembly also laid prostrate beneath Protestors, was the direct and authoritative the power of the iron-handed ruler of the support given to them by Cromwell. In English Commonwealth.*
1655 Cromwell gave a commission to No further violence was used by Crom- Gillespie and some of his brethren, emwell against the Church of Scotland. powering them to settle the affairs of the Some of the Resolutioners were exposed Church. This curious document proves, to danger, because they would not cease that with all his previous attachment to
pray for the king; but no force was the Congregational system, the protector used to prevent them, and no punishments was in favour of an Established Church; were inflicted. Synods and presbyteries and while it was obviously intended to continued to hold their meetings as for exclude all but Protesters, it expressly merly, subject to an occasional visit from provided that, in the induction of minissome of those strange enthusiasts who ters, respect should be had to the choice abounded in the English army, and were of the most religious part of the people, equally disposed for polemical as for mil. though that should not be the majority.* itary contests. The contentions, mean. Baillie complains much of the severe prowhile, between the Resolutioners and the ceedings of the Protesters, in deposing Protesters continued to rage with unabated some ministers, rejecting aspirants, and bitterness, although with much less per- settling young men of their own party in nicious results than would have taken preference to Resolutioners; but even place had the Assembly been regularly with all his querulous complaints, it is meeting from year to year. In that case, plain that they acted a much more lenient this schism, the first which had taken and impartial part than they had it in place in the church of Scotland since the their power to have done, and than their Reformation, must have led to the posi- opponents did, at the commencement of tive expulsion of the weaker party, and the struggle, when they set the example thereby to an incurable division in the of deposition. Many unseemly contests Presbyterian Church. As it was, amid undoubtedly took place; and at times the all their contests, they were perpetually Protesters, supported by the English holding meetings to treat of a termination troops, appear to have dealt harshly toto their unseemly strife, and the forma- wards some of their keen opponents; but, tion of a brotherly union. Yet there was nevertheless, from all that has been rea constant endeavour by each party to corded respecting that period, it appears increase its own strength by every prac- that it was one of remarkable religious ticabile method, and to weaken its antago- prosperity. The very contention of the nist. In this the Protesters were more two great parties rendered indifference in successful than their opponents. Patrick religious matters impossible on the part Gillespie was appointed to the principal- of either pastors or people. And although ship of Glasgow College, where his the General Assembly was suspended, no influence had a strong effect in drawing other part of church government and discipline experienced the slightest interrup-1 is further to be remarked, that when we tion; or, rather, every other part was read the writings of that period, we perthrown into more intense and vigorous ac- ceive at once a striking difference between tion. The whole vitality of the kingdom those of the Resolutioners and those of the seemed to be poured into the heart of the Protesters. The writings of the ProtesChurch, and all the strong energies ters are thoroughly pervaded by a spirit of the Scottish mind were directed to re- of fervent piety, and contain principles of ligious topics in a more exclusive manner the loftiest order, stated in language than they had ever previously been. of great force, and even dignity, of which The very fact of the kingdom's complete we find but few similar instances in the civil prostration beneath the power of productions of the Resolutioners. To Cromwell closed every other avenue of prove this assertion, it is enough to name thought and action, and even compelled the works of Rutherford, Blair, Binning, men to give their entire being to the pur- Guthrie of Fenwick, Durham, Traill, suit of earnest, fervent, personal religion. Gray, Guthry of Stirling, and many " I verily believe," says Kirkton, " there others, scarcely their inferiors. Among were more souls converted to Christ the Resolutioners, we find none deservin that short period of time, than in any ing to be matched with these, but Leighseason since the Reformation, though of ton, who afterwards became a prelate; triple its duration ;"** and keeping the David Dickson, who acknowledged that above considerations in mind, we may his party had erred ; and Robert Dougadmit that the account which he gives of las, who also lived long enough to see the state of religion at that time in Scot- that he had been mistaken and deceived. land, though highly coloured, is never- Before quitting the subject of the Resotheless, in all its main lineaments, a faith- lutioners and Protesters, there is one ful representation of the truth.
* Lamont's Diary, pp. 69.71.
Nicoll's Diary, pp. 163-166.
point to which it is desirable that the Throughout the whole of Scotland reader's attention should be directed. It during the period of Cromwell's domin- will be remembered that the direct topic ation, there prevailed a degree of civil which caused the contest between the two peace beyond what had almost ever parties was the question respecting the before been experienced. This; too, propriety of repealing the Act of Classes, should be taken into account, when we and admitting men of all professions in peruse the memoirs and annals of the religion, and all varieties of character, period; for there being no great public into the army, and to other places of events to record, these gossiping chroni- power and influence in a time of such clers filled their pages with minute de- danger. This the political-expediency tails respecting the contests between the party resolved to do, and against this the two parties in the Church, for lack of strict Covenanters protested. It is eviother materials to employ their talent for dent that the difference of opinion between journalizing. It ought to be remembered them arose from the different positions also, that although the Protesters enjoyed from which they viewed the same subthe favour and support o the protector to ject. Both were fully aware of the perila considerable extent, and might have ous state of the nation, and of the necesdone so much more if they had wished it, sity of adopting some strong measure to they never compromised their principles
, meet the emergency. But the one party nor stooped to flatter the usurper. Very trusted chiefly in a combination of human few of them were prevailed upon to take strength, though obtained by a sacrifice the “ tender," or acknowledgment of his of religious principle; the other, in the authority and that of the English Com- confession and abandonment of past ermonwealth, without a king or House of rors, the restoration and more strict Lords, because they regarded it as im- enforcement of religious purity, and that plying a violation of the Covenant.t calm trust in the protection and the Patrick Gillespie appears to have been strength of God, under which, by such the only minister in Scotland that ever procedure, they hoped to place their cause. prayed publicly for the protector. It The one party regarded national division
For a more ample account see Kirkton, pp. 48-65. as the main cause of the nation's weak! Rutherford opposed the tender very keenly. Lá.
ness; the other ascribed their calamities
mont's Diary, p. 51.
to the prevalence of national sins, espe- in ordinary warfare, means may be em cially to that violation of the National ployed, and results anticipated, more acCovenant which consisted in entrusting cording to the calculations and arrangeits enemies with the power to do it injury. ments of human wisdom, skill, and geIt is needless for shallow thinkers to nius. Not that, in the latter case, the overimagine they can decide the question ruling influence of Providence is more in summarily, by terming the one party men abeyance than in the former, but that its of enlightened and liberal sentiments, direct power is less conspicuously displayand the other narrow-minded and intol- ed. Now, the Covenanters regarded the crant bigots. The Covenanters had seen war as as of a strictly religious characthe storm of war borne back innocuous ter, otherwise they would not have enfrom their mountain bulwarks but a few gaged in it at all; and therefore they years before, when not a man was allowed could not, they dared not, employ means to take up arms in the sacred cause of re- on which they could not implore and exligion who was not believed to be person- pect the blessing of the Lord of Hosts. ally under its influence. They had, Men of no religion may deem this view besides, the analogy of all scriptural his- fanatical; but it will require more than tory in their favour; so that the views the usual amount of reason and , hilosothey held appeared to have the sanction phy—we speak not to such men of reliof recent facts and of the Word of God. gion--which they bring to bear upon the And had their opponents been as truly subject
, before they prove it to be either patriotic as they pretended, instead of irrational and absurd, or inconsistent with seeking political influence before they the providential government of the “ Most would lend their aid, might they not have High, who doeth according to his will in formed themselves into a separate army, the armies of heaven, and among the inhung on the enemy's flanks and rear, habitants of the earth." distracted his attention, cut off his sup- It is unnecessary to dwell on the minor plies, and thereby promoted in the most details which took place during the reliberal and unselfish manner, and to the mainder of the Protectorate. After the utmost of their power, the rescue of their death of Oliver Cromwell a series of incountry from the strong invader? This trigues commenced, which ended in the would have entitled them to the honour restoration of Charles II. In Scotland able appellation of men of truly enlight- these intrigues were chiefly guided by ened minds and genuine patriotism; but Robert Douglas, the leader of the Resotheir whole conduct, then and subse- lutioners, through the instrumentality of quently, proved them to have been in flu- James Sharp, who at that time affected, enced chiefly by ambitious, selfish, and perhaps entertained, as thoroughly as despotic principles.
such a man could, a warm zeal for the Let the reader take up the question, interests of the Presbyterian Church of and muse upon it deeply, in the form of Scotland. Monk, who had remained in the following hypothetic proposition :- Scotland since its subjugation by CromAre there not principles and rules appli- well, appeared for a time to favour the cable to wars strictly religious, by which Presbyterian cause, and continued to hold all operations should be governed and di- intercourse with Douglas through the rected, essentially different from those in medium of Sharp. The epistolary corvolved in ordinary warfare? What we respondence between Douglas and Sharp, mean to suggest is this: that in wars preserved in Wodrow, clearly proves the strictly religious, which are of course duplicity, selfishnes, and treachery of solely defensive (for religion may not be Sharp, and prepares us for the dark and propagated by the sword, although it may, cruel tyranny which that hollow-hearted in extraordinary cases, be so defended), and ruthless man subsequeritly exercised no principle of merely secular policy can towards the Church which he had first be admitted without vitiating the cause ; | betrayed, and then set himself to perseno principle can be held and acted upon cute. which has not the clear warrant of the Word of God, either in stated precept or
For a very full, accurate, and impartial view of the
period that elapsed between the death of Charles I. recorded example. On the other hand, and the restoration of Charles II., the reader is referred
THE REVOLUTION OF 1688.
James Guthrie-Middleton's Parliament-Oath of
Charles II. entered London in triumph | a change so sudden and so grear, an on the 29th of May 1660; and with his investigation more minute, searching, and restoration to the sovereignty begins a profound, than it has ever yet received. new era of the Church of Scotland's his- Into that subject, however, we cannot entory, the record of which is one of suffer- ter, further than merely to remark, that ings, and lamentations, and woe. for the fundamental error of restoring the
king to full power, without any prelimiting conditions for regulating the exercise of that power, the Church of Scotland, as
a body, was not to blame. So early as CHAPTER VII.
the 6th of February 1660, six of the lead
ing ministers met in Edinburgh, and FROM THE RESTORATION OF CHARLES 11. TO agreed to send Mr. James Sharp to
London, to hold intercourse with Monk,
according to that wily politician's desire State of Affairs at the Restoration-James SharpCouncil of State-Apprehension of Argyle and of and gave to him instructions by which he
was to regulate all his stipulations in beChurch-Trial and Execution of Argyle and Guthrie half of the Church of Scotland.* At that -Deposition and Banishment of several MinistersProclamation of the King's determination to restore time the design of restoring the king hád Prelacy-Consecration of four Scottish Bishops in not been divulged; but these instructions London-Prohibition of all Presbyterian Church Courts--Proceedings of the Prelatic ParliamentOaths and Declaration against the Covenant-Refor: of civil government should be established,
were equally applicable whatever form mation-Diocesan Meetings-Act of Glasgow-Ejection of nearly Four Hundred Ministers-Consequences-Trial and Death of Warriston Recerection Church did not wish directly to interfere,
--a matter with which the Presbyterian Proclamation against Conventicles Causes of the though decidedly favourable to monarchy. and Fatal Consequences-- Martyrdom of Hugh M'Kail Sharp seems to have been chosen as the Mitchell's attempt-Increased Severities - The First agent of the Church at this juncture, beIndulgence—Dissentions caused by it--Field-preach cause of his success in some previous neContinued Persecution-Second Indulgence-Pro. gotiations during the time of Cromwell, ceedings against Conventicles and Field-preaching when he had been sent by the Resolu-Continued Persecution, Instances-Death of Arch- tioners to counteract the influence of the bishop Sharp-Declaration of Rutherglen---Battle of Protesters. His conduct on that occaBattle of Bothwell Bridge-Trials, Executions, and sion gave great satisfaction to his party, stances--The Society People Queens-ferry Paper and is praised in the most extravagant and Declaration of SanquhareSkirmish fat rayrames: terms by Baillie, who calls him “ that communication–Trial and Death of Cargil–Perse very worthy, pious, wise, and diligent ceedings against Årgyle - His Escape-Circuit Courts young man, Mr. James Sharp.” His --Murders in the Fields-- Proceedings against the character was better understood by Bishop Death of Charles II:-James VII.- Unsuccessful At Burnet; and as it is difficult for a Presbyte- Dunottar Castle-Transportation to the Colonies rian to mention his name and character in as Slaves-The King's Letter to Parliament-Schemes such terms as he deserves, without being tion–Liberty of Conseience-Trial and Execution of thought to be influenced by violent and Renwick-The Society People-Letter of the Scot vindictive feelings, it may be expedient to Ministers to the Prince of Orange-The Revolution quote the language of the prelatic histo
rian. [1660.] THE Restoration of Charles II. to the throne of his ancestors, without the
“ Among these, Sharp, who was emguard of precautionary conditions of any was one. He carried with him a letter
ployed by the Resolutioners of Scotland, kind, and the strange frenzy of extrava- from the Earl of Glencairn to Hyde, gant loyalty which seized upon the
made soon after Earl of Clarendon, rewhole kingdom like some uncontrollable epidemic, so strongly contrasted commending him as the only person cawith the conduct and temper exhibited pable to manage the design of setting up by the nation but a few years before
, Episcopacy in Scotland ; upon which he would require for the explanation of was received into great confidence. Yet,
as he had observed very carefully the suco the “ History of the Church of Scotland during the cess of Monk's solemn protestations Commonwealth,” by the Rev. James Beattie, recently published.
* Wodrow, Dr. Burn's edit. p, 5.