Front Page Titles (by Subject) The Millennium at Hand [Hanserd Knollys], 1 A Glimpse of Sion's Glory (1641) a - Puritanism and Liberty, being the Army Debates (1647-9) from the Clarke Manuscripts with Supplementary Documents
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The Millennium at Hand [Hanserd Knollys], 1 A Glimpse of Sion’s Glory (1641) a - Arthur Sutherland Pigott Woodhouse, Puritanism and Liberty, being the Army Debates (1647-9) from the Clarke Manuscripts with Supplementary Documents 
Puritanism and Liberty, being the Army Debates (1647-9) from the Clarke Manuscripts with Supplementary Documents, selected and edited with an Introduction A.S.P. Woodhouse, foreword by A.D. Lindsay (University of Chicago Press, 1951).
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Rev. 19. 6: And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying: Hallelujah, for the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth.
At the pouring forth of the first vial, there was a voice saying: Babylon is fallen, it is fallen. At the pouring forth of the sixth, John hears a voice as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of thunderings, saying: Hallelujah, the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth, immediately following the other. Babylon’s falling is Sion’s raising. Babylon’s destruction is Jerusalem’s salvation. The fourth vial was poured upon the sun, which is yet doing, namely upon the Emperor and that house of Austria, and will be till that house be destroyed. * * * This is the work that is in hand. As soon as ever this is done, that Antichrist is down, Babylon fallen, then comes in Jesus Christ reigning gloriously; then comes in this Hallelujah, the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth. * * * It is the work of the day to cry down Babylon, that it may fall more and more; and it is the work of the day to give God no rest till he sets up Jerusalem as the praise of the whole world. Blessed is he that dasheth the brats of Babylon against the stones. Blessed is he that hath any hand in pulling down Babylon. And beautiful likewise are the feet of them that bring glad tidings unto Jerusalem, unto Zion, saying, The Lord God Omnipotent reigneth. This is the work of this exercise: to show unto you how, upon the destruction of Babylon, Christ shall reign gloriously, and how we are to further it.1 * * *
From whence came this hallelujah? I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters. By waters we are to understand people: the voice of many waters, of many people. * * *
The voice, of Jesus Christ reigning in his Church, comes first from the multitude, the common people. The voice is heard from them first, before it is heard from any others. God uses the common people and the multitude to proclaim that the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth. As when Christ came at first the poor receive[d] the Gospel—not many wise, not many noble, not many rich, but the poor—so in the reformation of religion, after Antichrist began to be discovered, it was the common people that first came to look after Christ. * * * The business, brethren, concerning the Scots, it is a business in the issue whereof we hope there will be great things. Where began it? At the very feet, at the very soles of the feet. You that are of the meaner rank, common people, be not discouraged; for God intends to make use of the common people in the great work of proclaiming the kingdom of his Son: The Lord God Omnipotent reigneth. The voice that will come of Christ’s reigning is like to begin from those that are the multitude, that are so contemptible, especially in the eyes and account of Antichrist’s spirits and the prelacy: the vulgar multitude, the common people—what more contemned in their mouths than they? * * *
Though the voice of Christ’s reign came first from the multitude; yet it comes but in a confused manner, as the noise of many waters. Though the multitude may begin a thing, and their intention may be good in it, yet it is not for them to bring it to perfection: that which they do commonly is mixed with much confusion and a great deal of disorder. * * * The people had a hint of something: Down with Antichrist, down with popery. Not understanding distinctly what they did, their voice was but as the voice of many waters. Therefore it follows: and as the voice of mighty thunderings. * * * After the beginning of this confused noise among the multitude, God moves the hearts of great ones, of noble, of learned ones; and they come in to the work, and their voice is as the voice of mighty thundering, a voice that strikes terror, and hath a majesty in it to prevail. * * * This is the work of the day, for us to lift up our voice to heaven, that it might be mighty to bring forth more and more the voice of our Parliament as a voice of thunder, a terrible voice to the Antichristian party, that they may say, The Lord God Omnipotent reigneth. And let us not be discouraged, for our prayers, though they be poor and mean, and scattered, they may further the voice of thunderings. * * *
Though Christ’s kingdom be for a while darkened, Christ shall reign gloriously. That is implied. It is revealed to John as a great wonder, as a glorious thing. Why, did not Christ reign before? Yes, but not in that manner that now he is to reign: the kingdom of Christ hath been exceedingly darkened in the world: though it now begins to appear a little more brightly, it hath been exceedingly darkened. * * *
It may be, it is to be a stumbling block to wicked and ungodly men in his just judgment, that they should see and not understand. And it was upon this ground that God suffered his kingdom to be darkened hitherto, that Antichrist might prevail: because of much glory that he is intendinga to bring out of the prevailing of Antichrist in the world, therefore in his providence he hath so permitted it as that the kingdom of his Son for many years should be darkened. And (my brethren) if the kingdom of Christ had been kept in congregations in that way that we and some other churches are in, it had been impossible that Antichrist should have got head. But God in his providence, because he would permit Antichrist to rise and to rule for a long time—and he had many things to bring out of the kingdom of Antichrist, to work for his glory—therefore God hath left this truth to be so dark: the setting up of Christ in his kingly office. Thirdly, because God would exercise the faith and other graces of his Spirit in his children, that they might believe in, and love Jesus Christ for his spiritual beauty, though there appears nothing but spiritual beauty, though no outward beauty, no outward kingdom doth appear, but he be as a spiritual king only. * * * And the less Christ doth reign outwardly in the world, the less glorious his kingdom doth appear outwardly, the more let us labour to bring our hearts under his spiritual reign. * * * For yet the voice is not heard much, that the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth, abroad in the world, though lately some noise we have heard. But blessed be God, in our congregations amongst us we may hear that the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth. It is through our wretched wickedness if his kingly power be not fully set up amongst us in all his ordinances. And that we should have an opportunity to set up his kingly power amongst us here, while it is so much opposed and so little known in the world, it is a great mercy. * * *
But though it be dark for a while, certainly he shall reign, and the voice will be glorious and distinct one day, saying, Hallelujah, the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth. He shall reign first personally; secondly, in his Saints.
First, personally. We will not fully determine of the manner of his personal reigning. But thus far we may see there is . . . a probability, in his person, God and Man, he shall reign upon the earth, here in this world, before that great and solemn day. There are divers scriptures that have somewhat of this in them. We cannot give the distinct voice of those scriptures, but many of God’s Saints, they do hear something, and when a thing grows nearer and nearer God will reveal it more distinct. Zech. 12. 10: They shall look upon him whom they have pierced, and shall mourn for him as one mourneth for his only son. It is usually understood either of a spiritual looking by the eye of faith or beholding Christ at the day of judgment. But why should we take it for a spiritual looking, and looking at the day of judgment? That [the] place doth not hold out; that is not the thing intended. They shall mourn every one apart: this is not like the setting forth of the mourning at the day of judgment. And take but this one rule: that all texts are to be understood literally, except they make against some other scriptures, or except the very coherence and dependence of the scripture shows it otherwise, or it makes against the analogy of faith. Now there is nothing against this, but it may be so. A second scripture that seems to hold out somewhat is that in the 26th of Matthew, 29: I will not henceforth drink of the fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom. It is true, this is likewise interpreted in a mystical sense; but there is no reason why we may not take it literally. Not in the kingdom of his Father in heaven; but in that kingdom that he shall come in here, to drink the fruit of the vine, to have communion with his Saints in this world. 2 Thess. 2. 8: Antichrist shall be destroyed by the brightness of Christ’s coming, the brightness of his personal coming. And that place (Rev. 20) where it is said, The Saints shall reign with him a thousand years, which cannot be meant reigning with him in heaven. It is made as a proper peculiar benefit unto such as had refused Antichrist’s government, especially to the Christian Church. It is likely divers of the prophets and patriarchs may come in, but especially it belongs to the Christian Church. Now the reigning with Christ a thousand years is not meant reigning with him in heaven. For after these thousand years there shall be many enemies raised against the Church; Gog and Magog shall gather themselves together. If it were meant of heaven, that could not be; and therefore it must be meant of Jesus Christ coming and reigning here gloriously for a thousand years. And although this may seem to be strange, yet heretofore it hath not been accounted so. It hath been a truth received in the primitive times. Justin Martyr, that lived presently after John, he spake of this as a thing that all Christians acknowledged; and likewise Lactantius hath such expressions in divers places of his seventh book. * * *
God intends to honour Christ and the Saints before the world. * * * And God is pleased to raise the hearts of his people to expect it; and those that are most humble, most godly, most gracious, most spiritual, searching into the scriptures, have their hearts most raised in expectation of this. And it is not like, that that work of the Spirit of theirs shall be in vain. But God is beginning to clear it up more and more. God is beginning to stir in the world, and to do great things in the world, the issue whereof (I hope) will come to that we speak of. * * *
The first thing wherein the happiness of the Church consists is this: that it shall be delivered from all the enemies of it, and from all molesting troubles, and so be in a most blessed safety and security. The God of peace shall tread down Satan shortly, and all that are of Satan. Christ is described in this Rev. 19, with his garment dyed in blood, when he doth appear to come and take the kingdom. And he appeared with many crowns on his head; that notes his many victories, and his name was King of Kings and Lord of Lords. And the Saints appeared triumphing with him, clothed with white linen and set upon white horses. Is that a clothing for soldiers? Yes, for the army of Christ, that rather comes to triumph than for to fight. Christ fighteth and vanquisheth all these enemies; and they come triumphing in white. * * * And this city that is described in the Revelation shall have the gates always open, in regard of the security that is there—no danger at all of any enemy.
Secondly, there shall be a wonderful confluence of people to this church: both Jew and Gentile shall join together to flow to the beautifulness of the Lord. Dan. 2. 35: Christ is compared to the stone that shall break the image and shall become a mountain, and fill the whole heaven. Isa. 60. : They shall come as doves to the windows. And when John came to measure the city, the Church, it was a great and mighty city.
Thirdly, because where there is much confluence, there useth to be a contraction of much filthiness; therefore, in the third place, it shall be most pure—a pure church, yea, in great part, if not altogether; nay, we may almost affirm, altogether to be delivered from hypocrites. Without there shall be dogs, and whosoever shall work or make a lie. Not without, in hell; but without the church. Hypocrites shall be discovered and cast out from the church. Though many get into the church now; then the righteous nation shall enter in. In the 44th of Ezekiel, 9, there is a description of the Church under the Gospel; and he shows that none uncircumcised in heart shall enter in there. But the fulfilling of the prophecies of those chapters in the latter end of Ezekiel will not be till this time; and then no uncircumcised in heart shall enter. Rev. 21. 27: There shall in no wise enter into it anything that defileth, &c. * * * It is a most pure church, and therefore is described: the walls to be precious stones, the city to be as clear as glass, and the pavement to be pure gold.
Fourthly, there shall be abundance of glorious prophecies fulfilled, and glorious promises accomplished. When you read the Prophets, you have prophecies of many glorious things; and the knowledge of this truth will help to understand those prophecies. * * *
Fifthly, abundance of hidden mysteries of godliness will be cleared then, that now are exceeding dark. * * * Rev. 11. 19: There was seen the Ark of the Testament; whereas the Ark stood before in the Holy of Holies that was shut up, that none was to come into it but the High Priest. But now it is opened to all. In the Ark werea the secrets, a type of the secrets that shall be opened at this time, that were shut up before. Glorious truths shall be revealed, and above all the mystery of the Gospel and the righteousness of faith shall be discovered. Before, what a little of the mystery of the Gospel and the righteousness of faith was discovered! But this will grow brighter and brighter till that time, which is the great design of God for his glory to all eternity.
Sixthly, the gift of the Saints shall be abundantly raised. He that is weak shall be as David; and he that is strong, as the Angel of the Lord (Zech. 12. 8). And then shall be accomplished that promise that God will pour his Spirit on them; and their young men shall see visions, and their old men shall dream dreams. It was fulfilled in part upon the Apostles, but the full is not till that time knowledge shall be increased.
Seventhly, the graces of the Saints shall be wonderfully enlarged, even in a manner glorified; though not so full as afterwards in the highest heaven, but mightily raised. The Saints shall be all clothed in white linen, which is the righteousness of the Saints; that is, the righteousness they have by Christ, whereby they shall be righteous before God, and holy before men. Holiness shall be written upon their pots, and upon their bridles: upon every thing their graces shall shine forth exceedingly to the glory of God. * * *
The people of God have been, and are, a despised people. But their reproach shall be for ever taken away, and they shall not be ashamed of religion, for it shall be glorified before the sons of men. * * * There are notable texts of scripture to show the great honour that shall be in the ways of religion. Isa. 49. 23: Kings shall be thy nursing fathers, and queens thy nursing mothers; they shall bow down to thee, and lick up the dust of thy feet. What a high expression is this for the honour of godliness! * * * The second place is in Zech. 12. 5: The governors of Judah shall say in their hearts: The inhabitants of Jerusalem shall be my strength in the Lord of Hosts, their God. We know that now in many places the governors of Judah, the great ones of the country, their spirits have been set against the Saints of God. We know what reproachful names they have put upon them, and how they have discountenanced them. Though the governors of Judah have counted them factious, and schismatics, and Puritans, there is a time coming when the governors of Judah shall be convinced of the excellency of God’s people, so convinced as to say in their hearts that the inhabitants of Jerusalem, that is, the Saints of God gathered together in a church, are the best commonwealth’s men: not seditious men, not factious, not disturbers of the state. * * * This shall be when the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth in his Church. And through God’s mercy we see light peeping out this way. * * *
In the ninth place, the presence of Jesus Christ and of God shall be exceeding glorious in the Church: then the name of it shall be called Jehovah Shammah, The Lord is there. They shall follow the Lamb wheresoever he goeth; they shall see the King in his beauty and glory. And such a presence of Christ will be there as it is questionable whether there shall be need of ordinances, at least in that way that now there is. And therefore some interpret that place so: They shall be all taught of God, and shall not need to teach one another. * * * The presence of Christ shall be there and supply all kind of ordinances. * * *
In the tenth place, . . . many of the worthies of God, that have lived in former times, shall rise again. * * *
The eleventh is this: there shall be most blessed union of all the churches of the world. * * * Blessed will the time be when all dissensions shall be taken away; and when there shall be a perfect union of all, and not any distinction of Calvinists or Lutherans, or the like, but all shall come and serve God and be called by one name.
The twelfth is the resurrection of the creatures of the world: and so in that regard there shall be abundance of outward glory and prosperity. * * * When the fulness of the glory of the adoption of the sons of God shall come, the creatures shall be delivered to them. The whole world is purchased by Christ, and purchased for the Saints, that is Christ’s aim. All is yours, says the Apostle, the whole world; and therefore (Rev. 21. 7) it is said, The Saints shall inherit all things. You see that the Saints have little now in the world; now they are the poorest and the meanest of all; but then when the adoption of the sons of God shall come in the fulness of it, the world shall be theirs; for the world is purchased for them by Jesus Christ. Not only heaven shall be your kingdom, but this world bodily. * * *
But you will say, Are these things true? To that we answer: For the truth of them I will go no further than this chapter, verse 9, These are the true sayings of God. * * *
But how can they be? Zech. 8. 9: If it be marvellous in your eyes, should it also be marvellous in my eyes? saith the Lord of Hosts. * * * It is God Omnipotent that shall do these things, by that power, whereby he is able to subdue all things unto himself. Mountains shall be made plain, and he shall come skipping over mountains and over difficulties. Nothing shall hinder him. * * *
But when shall these things be? Truly, brethren, we hope it is not long before they shall be; and the nearer the time comes, the more clearly these things shall be revealed. * * * No place in scripture gives us so much light to know when this shall be as Dan. 12. 11. And from the time that the daily sacrifices shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand, two hundred and ninety days. What is the meaning of this? The light that I have from this, I acknowledge to be from that worthy instrument of God, Mr. Brightman. A day is usually taken for a year, and so many days as were set, so many years it should be. All the question is about the beginning of the time. This abomination of desolation was in Julian’s time, in 360, because then Julian would set up the Temple again (that was destroyed), in despite of the Christians, and would set up the Jewish religion again. That was the abomination of desolation, says he; and the whole Jewish religion was not consumed till that time. Now reckon so many years according to the number of the days, it comes to 1650; and it is now 1641, and that place for the abomination of desolation is like to be it as any that can be named. But it is said, Blessed is he that comes to another number: 1335 days; that is 45 years more added. That is, says he, in 1650 they shall begin; but it shall be 45 years before it comes to full head, and blessed is he that comes to this day. And he hath hit right in other things, as never the like, in making Sardis to be the church of Germany, and foretold from thence how things would fall out, and we see now are. Now we have also a voice from the multitude as from the waters, and it begins to come from the thunderings. * * *
If God hath such an intention to glorify his Church, and that in this world, oh, let every one say to his own heart: What manner of persons ought we to be? * * * Because you are beginning this despised work, gathering a church together, which way God will honour. Certainly, the communion of Saints, and independency of congregations, God will honour. And this work is a foundation of abundance of glory that God shall have, and will continue till the coming of Christ. And blessed are they that are now content to keep the word of God’s patience. And do you keep the word of God’s patience though you suffer for it, as you now do. * * * Take heed that you lose not this opportunity; certainly if there should fall out any just cause amongst you of scandal in regard of divisions, or any other way, you may do more hurt to hinder this glorious work than all the persecutors could do. For you will persuade the consciences of men that this is not the way of Christ—persecutors cannot do so—so that the governors of Judah will not say, Our strength is in the inhabitants of Jerusalem, those that profess themselves to be the people of Jerusalem.
D.N.B. 31. 280; see further W. Haller, The Rise of Puritanism (1938), 270-1. Also ascribed to William Kiffin.
 Querying how an hallelujah is suitable to a fast, the preacher answers that it is ‘suitable . . . because we are by faith to speak of things as if they were done.’
[233. (a)]A Glimpse of Sions Glory: or the Churches beautie specified. Published for the good and benefit of all those whose hearts are raised up in the expectation of the glorious liberties of the Saints. [Quotes Psalm 87. 3; Isa. 40. 10, 11.] London, Printed for William Larnar . . . MDCXLI. ‘To the Reader,’ signed W. K. (i.e. William Kiffin), omitted.