Front Page Titles (by Subject) PREFACE. - The Works of John Robinson, vol. 1
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PREFACE. - John Robinson, The Works of John Robinson, vol. 1 
The Works of John Robinson, Pastor of the Pilgrim Fathers, with a Memoir and Annotations by Robert Ashton, 3 vols (London: John Snow, 1851). Vol. 1.
Part of: The Works of John Robinson, Pastor of the Pilgrim Fathers, with a Memoir and Annotations by Robert Ashton, 3 vols.
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The record, which the Apostle bare the Jews in his time, such, as either read these men's writings, or know their persons, may bear them; which is, “that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.” Rom. x. 2. I add, touching them, nor in modesty neither; which if it held any place in their hearts, as were meet, would moderate and restrain, both their causeless presumption in themselves, and graceless licentiousness which they fear not to use, both towards God, and other men.
They would seem very zealous for the Scriptures' purity and perfection; warning all, in the epistle to the reader, to take heed they presume not above what is written, nor to add to, or diminish from the perfect law of the Lord contained therein: and yet they themselves presume so frequently, and notoriously in this their book, to corrupt the very words of the texts which they cite, by adding to and taking away and altering, for their advantage; as I suppose, the like hath not been seen before in any, of any sect whatsoever: and as if, in truth, they meant not to use a gift to interpret the Holy Scriptures, but a privilege to correct them. A taste of this they give us in their very epistle, where answering an objection taken from the learning of the Synod of Dort, by Isa. xxix. 14, and Matt. xi. 25, 26, they, instead of “wise and prudent,” which are Christ's words, put “learned,” and that in small letters as part of the text, both wronging therein that lawful and helpful learning in others, which themselves want, and corrupting the Lord's words, which they ought religiously to keep, and obtruding another meaning than ever came into his mind: which they do usually in this treatise, by neglecting the main scope of the place cited, and catching at a word or phrase in it, which is the highest way, that can be, to all heresy.
And for men, how uncharitable are they towards them in their persons, judging them as perishing without remedy, if they receive not their new gospel of Anabaptistry and Free-will! How injurious in relating their own misformed collections for their opinions ! And lastly, how contemptuous of their gifts and graces, how eminent soever! As if the Word of God came out from them, or to them alone. 1 Cor. xiv. 36. It is true we ought not to pin our faith on the sleeves of any, nor to call any master, as Christ speaks and means, but him alone: and no less true, that Christ hath given gifts to some men, for the edifying of others, Eph. iv. 8—11; and that we ought not to look on our things alone, as if we alone had knowledge, and conscience, and zeal, and souls to save: “but every man also on the things of others,” Phil. ii. 4, though in some things differing from them, as having these things, as well as we: and therewith considering, that many eyes see more than one, and that specially having, as so many spectacles, the advantages of knowledge of tongues, and arts, with daily travail in the Scripture, which in us are wanting. And thus serving God, in all modesty of mind, Acts xx. 19, and being sincere in the truth in love, Eph. iv. 15, we shall be much fitter, both to help others, and to be helped by them in the things agreeable thereunto.