ACT Of the Synod
Of the Synod of Lothian and Tweeddale, Anent the Observation of a Fast, with the Causes thereof.
Edinburgh the sixth of May 1698 Years post Meridiem.
PUBLISHED BY Heirs and Successors of Andrew Anderson
THe Provincial Synod of Lothian and Tweddale met here, taking to their Consideration, the Dispensations of God in his Province, with respect to the Season of the Year, in this cold and unkindly Spring; Did judge that God was thereby calling them, and the People under their Charge to the solemn Humiliation, for averting his threatned Judgements: And therefore Appointed Tuesday the Seventeenth day of this current Moneth of May, to be observed as a Day of Solemn Fasting and Humiliation, in all the Churches within the Bounds of the said Synod, for these Causes following.
- That notwithstanding the Light of the glorious Gospel shining among us, there is a great Contempt of the Gospel, much Ignorance and Ungodliness in the Land, and Self-seeking, and Lukewarmness in the Matters of God among all Ranks of Persons, and Profaneness and Wickedness grow, the shameful Sins of Drunkeness and Uncleaness, Swearing, Sabbath-breaking, the total Neglect by some, and superficial performing by others of the Worship of God, both in Secret and in Families, abound in City and Country, and by frequent Murders Bloos toucheth Blood.
- That notwithstanding of Vows and Engagements National and Personal, and after severe Judgements, and signal Mercies, and after Solemn Humiliations People go on in their Sins, and continue impenitent, hard Hearted and reformed.
- That for these & other Sins, the Wrath & displeasure of God is visible against us in the unkindly cold & winter-like Spring, whereby GOD threatenes to blast our Expectations and Hopes of the Fruits of the Earth, and cut off Man and Beast by Famine, and that already there is a great Dearth arisen, and in many places of the Land they have great Want both of Food and Seed, and the Cattel and Sheep die in great Numbers, and yet we are not duely affected therewith, but there is generally a woful Stupidity and Security.
- The dangerous State of the Church both at Home and Abroad, through the spreading of Atheistical and Blasphemous Opinions contrary to, and destructive of the Fundamental Principles of Religion, and the increase of Popery in diverse Places, the Divisions in some, and Desolations in other parts of this Church, and that in diverse Places Abroad, these of the reformed Religion are under Persecution, and others in Fear and Danger.
For these beside many other Causes mentioned in former Fasts, we have Cause to humble our selves by Fasting and Prayer and to be Afflicted, and Mourn, and Weep, and to turn unto the Lord, and to pray that He would turn us unto him, and pardon our Sins, and the Sins of the Land, and that he would turn from His Wrath, and send kindly Weather, which may cherish the Fruits of the Earth for Food to Man and Beast, that he would heal our Breaches, plant our desolate Places, stop the growth of Prophaneness and Popery, and other corrupt Opinions, and grant Deliverance, and Rest, and Safety to his suffering People, and preserve his Church, and advance the Kingdom of the Lord Jesus, and that for His Churches sake he would long preserve, and richly bless our King, direct and guide him in his Government, that under him the people may live a quiet and peaceable Life, in all Godliness and Honesty.
Edinburgh, Printed by the Heirs and Successors of Andrew Anderson, Printer to the Kings most Excellent Majesty, Anno Dom. 1698.