Front Page Titles (by Subject) Charge against Mr. Thomas Smith. a - The Clarke Papers. Selections from the Papers of William Clarke, vol. 2
The Online Library of Liberty
A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.
Search this Title:
Charge against Mr. Thomas Smith. a - Sir William Clarke, The Clarke Papers. Selections from the Papers of William Clarke, vol. 2 
The Clarke Papers. Selections from the Papers of William Clarke, Secretary to the Council of the Army, 1647-1649, and to General Monck and the Commanders of the Army in Scotland, 1651-1660, ed. C.H. Firth (Camden Society, 1894). 4 vols.
About Liberty Fund:
Liberty Fund, Inc. is a private, educational foundation established to encourage the study of the ideal of a society of free and responsible individuals.
The text is in the public domain.
Fair use statement:
This material is put online to further the educational goals of Liberty Fund, Inc. Unless otherwise stated in the Copyright Information section above, this material may be used freely for educational and academic purposes. It may not be used in any way for profit.
Charge against Mr. Thomas Smith.a
January 4th, 1648.
The heads of a Charge to a sermon preached by Mr. Tho: Smith at Lancaster parish church, out of the 2d Epistle of Petter, the 2d chap: and the 2d verse.
From which he colected this observation, that every[one] that denies a fundementall doctrin of fayth and after con[futation] . . . . or admonition obstainatly maintaine it.
And now coming to lye downe Antechrist, and what it was like, and heresey to be a pernitious destration.
1. He compared heresey to a canker that did eate the eyes and flesh till at last did consume to the verey bone.
2. He compared it to an overflowing flood that drives away heapes of sand and stones, and indeed nothing is able to withstand it.
3ly. To foxes that devours the little plants or vines of Christ, for as foxes is subtile soe is heriticks.
4ly. To wolves being of a tearing and devouring nature, soe hereticks rent both Church and State.
5ly. To grinding Marchants that through covteousnesse make marchandiz of poore soules.
6ly. To spaunes of the Divill, or like a spaune of the Divill in a spirituall liknesse which walketh about the City catching soules.
7ly. To doges which are of a snarling nature.
8ly. To Divills or like to Jezabells, the daughters of the Divill being a spirituall bewitching soules.
9ly. To cheaters as in that once famous Citty, which one can scearsely goe into but they shall have their pocketts pick’t, if not their throates cutt, meaneing the Citty of London, where the Parliament and Army resides, haveing their mindes darkened through heresy, denying the Lord that bought them.
I have bin shewing you what they are like, and now I will come to shew you who they are.
(1) Such as leave the truth, and are of this part Independant, and soe to Anabaptize, and then to Antenominisme, and then to meare nothing as they were before.
And that there was such a tolleracion now that every one might follow after his owne lusts, and his owne wayes. I thinke contrary to the lawes of mann, and I am sure contrary to the lawes of God, for if Paul had had might according to his good will, hee would have had them all cutt off that troubled Israell, or the Church of Christ, as Mr. Smith said.
(2) I count those damnable hereticks that would not have their children baptized, or such as would not have a Sabboth or a 7th part of tyme for God’s Worship, or that pull downe free Grace and sett up free will, or that preach the law without the Gospell, or the Gospell without the law.
(3) I tearme such damnable hereticks as make seperacion from the ancient Church of England, under what pretence so ever of scandall, untryed without seekeing to bee reformed before the said seperacion, nor ought to leave one Church with lawfull Church ordinance, and to goe to another, both equally scandalous, nor ought you to depart from that Church, though never soe confusedly disordered, till they bee humbled, and I question whether then or noe; for wee have had two great plagues, namely the sword and pestilence, but now that plague of these heresyes is come which is the worst of all, which destroyes both body and soule.
Soe if heresy bee thus tollerated, then judge whether or noe wee bee not all turning hereticks. But now I will come to lay downe some caution to prevent heresy.
(1) I desyre you not to take up your Religion quickly, nor to change with the tymes, but to learne your principles of catichisme, for now is the tyme comeing that heresy is soe great, that they may come to question you in your principles of Religion.
(2ly) Being a people of itching eares which loves to heare noviltyes, and to heare new doctryne, but not allowing old Scripture phrayse to prove it with; therefore I adjure you, as a Minister of Christ, to stand for your old principles, for if you now loose that opportunitty, you never are like to have it againe; for I am not ashamed to confess my selfe one of the scattered tribe of Levy, but I will never turne heretick while I live.
Likewise in his prayer before sermon hee prayed, that if the Kinge were alive that hee might bee restored to his former dignity and honour, and if dead, that his blood may not be layd to the charge of this Kingdome.
And further wee are informed by a very honest man, that the said Tho: Smyth said there would bee noe peace till the Scotts came into the Kingdome to supprese the Independans and Sectaryes armye, and alsoe further said, if they came into England hee would joyne with them, and that the Mallitia of Lancashire was the honestest army in the Kingdome, for they would stand for the Presbyterian Government.
And thus haveing credible informacion that the aforesaid Mr. Smyth have preached this doctryne in divers publique places, and likewise in many private discourses, though often admonished by divers of his owne friends and constant hearers, which wee have bin informed of, Therefore wee humbly conceive him nott fitt or safe to preach to seduce the people, but to remayne in restraynt till hee have cleared himselfe of what is charged against him.
Signed by the Officers of Lancaster Castle.
[a ]See p. 187.