The Hands of God: or King Davids Choice

The hands of God:
King Davids
Wherein are proved:
1. That the least of evills is to be chosen.
2. That war is the worst of evills.
3. That the relation betwixt the king and
subject, is the nearest of all relations.
4. That rebells are the worst of men.
As is was delivered in a sermon,
By T.S. D.D.

May 11, 1647


[Page 7]

Thus King David expresses his wisedome, and thus secondly, he expresses his piety: For herein he pitties his Subjects equally with himselfe; yea, he preferres his subjects to himselfe, marke else what he sayes, Behold I have sinned, I have done wickedly, but these Sheepe alasse! what have they done? let thy hand O lord I pray thee, be against me and my Fathers house.

And if hee would have sacrificed himselfe for their weale, in taking the fault solely upon himselfe: Lord! what would he not have done, in redressing all grievances, for their wellfare, and his owne to boot? Is it possible for any Grand or Close Committee of twenty five, or thirty, like that of Athens to have such bowels of compassion upon their fellowsubjects? And that they might know it was no fraudulent pollicy, and to secure them of all such feares and jealousies, he testifies his unfeigned piety in my text: When God sent him the choyce of his three sharpest arrowes, Famine, Warre, or Plague: Behold, like a Father pitying his children, as every good King doth, hee declines the Famine, because that would have pintcht but the poorest sort, he had storehouses of provision for himselfe, hee declines the Warre also, because then onely the weakest should have gone to the wall; he had Garrisons and towers of strength for his owne security, and makes choyce of the Plague, which is Epidemicall, and Impartiall, Et aequo pulsat pede pauperum tabernas, Regumque turres, and knowes no difference betwixt a poore mans Cottage, and a Princes Pallace: And yet it is the least of these Evils, because it is Impartiall, as Famine is not, because it is not malicious as Warre is.

This is a selection from the original text


evil, famine, pity, plague, poor, war

Source text

Title: The Hands of God: or King Davids Choice

Author: Thomas Swadlin

Publication date: 1647

Edition: 2nd Edition

Place of publication: London

Provenance/location: This text was transcribed from images available at Early English Books Online: Bibliographic name / number: Wing (2nd ed.) / S6216 Bibliographic name / number: Thomason / E.441[28] Physical description: [4], 27, [1] p. Copy from: British Library Reel position: Thomason / 69:E.441[28]

Digital edition

Original author(s): Thomas Swadlin

Language: English

Selection used:

  • 1 ) tp, p.7 (Thus King David ... malicious as Warre is)


Texts collected by: Ayesha Mukherjee, Amlan Das Gupta, Azarmi Dukht Safavi

Texts transcribed by: Muhammad Irshad Alam, Bonisha Bhattacharya, Arshdeep Singh Brar, Muhammad Ehteshamuddin, Kahkashan Khalil, Sarbajit Mitra

Texts encoded by: Bonisha Bhattacharya, Shreya Bose, Lucy Corley, Kinshuk Das, Bedbyas Datta, Arshdeep Singh Brar, Sarbajit Mitra, Josh Monk, Reesoom Pal

Encoding checking by: Hannah Petrie, Gary Stringer, Charlotte Tupman

Genre: Britain > non-fiction prose > religion: sermons

For more information about the project, contact Dr Ayesha Mukherjee at the University of Exeter.