Baxter - Houston-Packer Collection BX5200 .B352 1835 v1

LIFE OF RICHARD BAXTER: 55 law to the subject, as to the decision of that cause, though the king send his broad seal against it, then that which the parliament saith is'law, is law to the subjects, about the dangers of the common- wealth, whatever it be in itself. " I make no doubt that both parties were to blame, as it com- monly falleth out in most wars and contentions; and I will not be he that will justify either of them. I doubt not but the headiness and rashness of the younger, unexperienced sort ofreligious people, made many parliament men and ministers overgo themselves to keep pace with those Hotspurs. No doubt, but much indiscretion appeared, and worse than indiscretion, in the tumultuous petition- ers; and much sin was committed in the dishonoring of the king, and in the uncivil language against the bishops and liturgy ofthe church. But these things came chiefly from the sectarian, sepa- rating spirit, whichblew the coals among foolish apprentices. And as the sectaries increased, so did this insolence increase. " As Bishop Hall speaks against the justifying of the bishops, so do I againstjustifying the parliament, ministers, or city> I believe many unjustifiable things were done ; but I think that a fewmen among themall were the doers or instigators." "But I then thought, whoever was faulty, the people's liberties and safety should not be forfeited. I thought that all the subjects were not guilty of all the faults of king or parliament when they defended them ; yea, that if both their causes had been bad, as against each other, yet that the subjects should adhere to that party which most secured the welfare of the nation, and might de- fend the land under their conductwithout owning all their cause. "And herein I was then so zealous, that I thought it was a great sm for men that were able to defend their country to be neuters. And I have been tempted since to think that I was a more compe- tent judge upon the place, when all things were before our eyes, than I am in the review of those days and actions, so many years after, when distance disadvantageth the apprehension. "* No Americanwho justifies the revolution of 1776, no Eng- lishman who justifies the revolution of 1680, can doubt that Bax- ter and those with whom he acted, were, at the beginning, in the right. Their cause, though it was afterwards shipwrecked by their ignorance and their dissensions, was the cause which will one day triumph throughout all theworld. "Narrative, Part I. p. 39.