The Faithfull Scout
Giving an Alarme to Yorkeshire, (especially to
the East-Ryding)and all other places at
this time freed from the misery,
A Treatise tending to stirre up men from secu-
rity which possesses them, because(as they
thinke) all danger is past, now that
the Seat of WARRE is re-
moved from them.
Written by Will. Meeke.
Hypocritae si vident ab omni parte omnia tranquilla, nihil periculi metuunt: quod si Deus illis minatur, et non ostendit statim flagella sua, derident aut spernunt. Cal. Praelect. in Jer.
Printed at Yorke by Tho: Broad, and are to be sold
by Nathanniel Brookes in London, at the
Angel in Cornhill.
PUBLISHED BY Tho. Broad
PUBLISHED FOR Nathanniel Brookes
We ourselves in this Land may by experience know this, for we once suppos'd and fear'd that Forreigne foes by invasion might worke our ruine; and to this end prepar'd our Ships, &c. but And now perhaps he may destroy us by them contrary to our feare.now quite contrary to the expectation of most (though indeed alwayes feared by some) God hath met with us, by sending a spirit of dis-unity among us, which is now like, without Gods especiall mercy, to worke our utter destruction. I might therefore shew how he hath somtimes feared a place with one plague and punished it with another, but what hath beene spoke may shew sufficiently his variety, &c. Job 25. 3.For who can number his armies. (saith Job) he hath so many none can tell the number of them. And yet besides all his visible judgements (and the Earth, the Sea, and all things in them are ready to excute his command: the Heavens, the Stars, &c are all at a becke to doe what he pleaseth) he hath an invinsible Army consisting of twenty thousand charets; nay, Psal. 68. 17. Dan. 7. 10.even thousands of Angels who are without number: therefore who can but assent to this truth, that God hath variety of punishments to inflict upon wicked men, &c.
Which yet will more manifestly appeare, if we consider how he hath met with men in those places where they expected safety, and where it was thought no feare could come: nay, which were so strong or free shot, that it was thought impossible for any harme to enter; from which It was thought troubles were so far, that they were reforted unto by men to take delight in; even in those places, I say, God hath oftentimes vexed men with una oydable misq ies. Thus he met with those rebellious Jews, who; notwithstanding they were forewarn'd, would needs go into Egypt, because, as they thought, there they should neither see nor feele any evill; but even there, contrary to their expectation, the Lord threatned evill should finde them out; Jer. 42. 14, 15, 16.The sword (saith he) that you feared shall overtake you there in the Land of Egypt, and the famine whereof you were afraid shall follow close after you into Egypt, and there ye shull dye. And the very like doth another Prophet threaten against those who expected help or deliverance from Egypt: Isa. 30.3.The strength of Phraoh shall be your shame, and the trust in the shadow of Egypt, your confusion: Even there where they hoped to finde comfort, and by whom they expected deliverance, there they sound sorrow, and they became a snare unto them, and their hopes not onely failed, but they were in a worse condition then otherwayes they would have been in; for they on whom they leaned did not onely breake, out wonnded them: And indeed it befalls many times thus to men that fly from danger, they finde worse entertainment then they departed from. Josh. 10. 16, 24, 25, 26.Those five Kings that warred against Joshua , thought they had been past danger when they escaped from the Field and fled into a cave at Makkedah: but destruction followed after them, and a worse death (more shamefull and ignominious) hapned unto them then that from which they fled. Ezek. 9. 6. Vid. infra.In a word, there is no place free from dangers, or that can priviledge those whom God will have punished: judgements oftentimes begin at the Lords Sanctuary, and in those places where men think [Page 26] themselves safest, they there meet with the most dangers, so that by this likewise the point is more cleerely proved, &c.
And as the inflicting punishments upon men in all places doth witnesse the Lords variety of punishments, so doth his sending them upon all sorts of men: the rich man is not spared for his wealth, nor the poore man for his poverty, nor the noble man for his honour, nor the Magistrate for his authority, &c. but all sorts, and all conditions, if they offend, are met with, one way or other.
God can doe unto wicked men for their destruction, as he did unto Job for his correction, and you know what sundry meanes he had to make him poore, though a very rich man, and one whom men in the world might think almost a thing impossible to make poore: Job 1. 15, 16, 17, 18, 19.he had the Sabebeans, the Caldeans, a fire from Heaven, and a great wind from the wildernesse to bring to passe what he had determined; so that nothing could save Job from these judgements, which, though to him they were but fatherly corrections, yet, I say, may shew us what severall sorts of puments he hath to meet with the richest man that is, if hee walke otherwayes then he would have him.
Or if the Lord shall be pleased to send a famine among us (as who knowes for all our present plenty but he may) that we may be prepared to suffer patiently, let us now in the time of plenty, use moderately, and with an holy sparing Gods creatures; let us not eat and drink too excessively, or use our selves to needlesse variety; for if we would thus by degrees be taught to be content with a little, if forced want should come, it would with more ease be undergone; for want alwayes goes the hardest with those who have been accustomed to variety; one brought up from a youth in hardship, will not hunch at any thing, but undergoe all with patience; when as a man brought up delicately, will with a great deale of griefe and trouble, labour under any hard burthen. And thus it would be with men and women, who pamper their bodies, and feed their appetites, [Page 90] with all manner of delightfull viands the want of such would goe hard with them in a time of scarcity, when as men who accustome themselves to moderation and temperance, would as well be content with a dish of herbs as a stalled oxe,Pro. 15. 17. and as well suffice nature with a little, as with all the variety that can be gotten.
Againe, the consideration of other godly men suffering in this kinde, should hearten us, and cause us not to feare too much, or tremble to heare of it, or to undergoe it, for God will alwayes provide for his servants, even when such plagues are the greatest.
Gen. 41. 54. Chap. 42. 1.Jacob found corne in Egypt, though famine was all the world over; the Prophet Jeremiah, in the time of the hard Siege at Jerusalem, sound such favour at the hand of his enemies, that as long as any bread lasted in the City, [...]he was to have every day a piece; so greatly was he beloved of God, that even when all the City was in want, and he hated of all in the City, yet was he provided for: now these and the like examples of Gods kindnesse towards his people in such distresse, may imbolden us to suffer with patience, seeing God is the same he was, and as carefull over his people as ever formerly, and will assuredly relieve those that are in distresse, if they doe but truly confide in him.
Suppose two men were to goe to prison, or to such a place where they were sure to finde want of all things; the one he knowes of a friend that will relieve him in necessity, and therefore he, with better heart, and more comfort, enters the undelightfull place; the other he know of none that will at all help, be his want never so extreem, and therefore sorrowfully enters, and with bitter griefe undergoes such unwelcome wants. It is even thus with Gods people, and ungodly men, with men that have faith, and unbeleeving persons; those who trust in the Lord, they feare not to heare of famine, they know of a friend who will one way or other relieve them;1 King. 17. 6. the ravens shall feede [Page 91] them, if men will not, or cannot; in prison they shall have bread, when men that have liberty shall want; pulse shall make them fat and faire; Dan. 1. 15.when others shall idye because they cannot undergoe hardnesse; one handfull of meale shall hold out to preserve them,2 King. 17. 14. when full barnes shall waste and be empty:Psal. 34. 10. in a word, they know that God will provide for them, and therefore they feare not, but considently and constantly relye upon him.
On the contrary, wicked and unbeleeving men (in time of dearth) know of no succour,2 King. 6. 27 if the Barne floore or the Wine-presse faile them, they are at a stand, they know not which way to turne themselves, and so the very thought of famine terrifies them, and to undergoe it seemes intolerable; therefore, I say, let us put our confidence in God, and consider what favour other of Gods servants have had in such distresses, and let that worke in us an assurance of Gods favour towards us, and then having that assurance, we shall be ready to undergoe with patience, this, or the like calamity.