Willison’s Testimony: Prefatory Statement by the Transcriber



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PREFACE

Popishness…………………………………………………….. ix, xxii

Corruptions listed……………………………………………… viii - ix

Acts of Synods against corruptions…………………………. xii

Disregard of Synods………………………………………….. xiii

Ministers with no scruples

of patronage or error…………………………..…………… xiv

Men with no scruples for orthodoxy

appointed as professors and masters …………………... xiv

Acceptation of errors ………………………………………… xv

Luther & David Ps. cxix - against loss of truth ……………… xix

Truth not sacrificed to preserve peace

Peace as Judgment ………………………………………. xix

Jeremiah 9:3; Rev. 21:8 ……………………………………… xx

War - France & Spain …………………………………………. xxi
TESTIMONY
Aurelius & Dioclesian persecutions ………………………….. 26

Druids ……………………………………………………….…… 26

Paladius; Lollards of Kyle; Luther; Melanchthon;
Patrick Hamilton ………………………………… …………. …. 28

John Wicliff; John Huss; Burning of Mr. Hamilton

George Wishard; John Rough; Jon Knox;

John Wilcock; Mr. Craig; John Erkine of Dun;

Parliament & Reformation - Confession of Faith….. …….. … 29

Cromwell ………………………………………………..……… 40

Invades and oppresses Scots………………………………… 40

Charles II - King 1651 …………………………………………. 41

Laws over the Church ……………………………………… 42

Clarification of the original WCF 23 (This may be another

incident [1649] after the 1647 ratification and

exception stated by James Bannerman in his book,

“The Church of Christ” p 179.)………………………………….. 37ff.

Death of James Guthrie - 1660

Decapitated and his head placed in one of the

ports in the city of Edinburgh …………………………………. 43

Death penalty of Charles II against preachers ……………….. 45

Destruction of Family Worship………………………………….. 45

Forced denunciation of vows …………………………………… 46

Persecution to the death ……………………………………… 47, 48

Persecution by Magistrate …………………………………… 51

Subscription etc. ……………………………………………….. 57

Qualifications for elder …………………………………………. 61

Colony to America ………………………………………………. 61

Confessional Subscription ……………………………………… 62; 79

Minister visitation ………………………………………………… 64

Schools …………………………………………………………… 64

Westminster Confession 23.3; 26.6 …………………………… 66

Renewal of covenant vows by ministers ……………………. 67 (bottom) ff.

Sins against vows …………………………………………….. 68

Civil Magistrate & Church - tensions ………………………… 69ff.

Profaning of the Lord’s Day

that came with union with England

Episcopal worship opposed ……………………… 71-74

The abandonment of Family worship etc. …………………… 72

Worship deteriorated …………………………………………. 72-73; 75

Humility of Divines under God’s just punishment …………… 75

Power of Presbyterian ministers to purge

scandalous and erroneous ministers ………………………… 76

Riots ……….……………………………………………………. 85

Security of the people found under King George—not God. 85

Mr. James Webster against gross false teachings

of Mr. Simson - Arminianism etc. ………………………….. 86

Heresies stated in a way that they would seem

consonant with the Westminster Standards ……….. 87

Marrow of modern Divinity laid before 1620 Assembly

Arguments from natural reason

Exceptions detailed

Rebuke of ministers not to teach false doctrine ignored

Sermons watered down, old doctrine “harsh” .… 88

Church elects officers; Acts 1:15, 23; 6:2; 8:14; 13:3; 14:23;

16:9; 1 Jn. 4:1; 2 Jn. 10 …………………..…………… 93

Christian choice of pastors …………………………………… 94,95, 98, 99, 103,

104


Acts 6; 14:23 etc., original languages 105

Evils no longer sensed ……………………………………….. 95

Unchristian contentions in judicatories

Scattering of the flock

Simonatical practices, effects of …………………….…… 97

National Covenant …………………………………………….. 98

Patrons

Church planting…………………………………………….. 101,102

Rom. 12:1; 2 Cor. 5:20-10:1; Philemon 9,10; 1 Thess. 2:7…. 106, 107

Rom. 14:13, 19, 21 …………………………………………… 107

1 Jn. 4:1; Mt. 7:15-16………………………………………… .. 108

2 Jn. 10; Acts 17:11; Jn. 10:4,5………………………………. 109

Eusebeius, Turretine ………………………………………….. 109

Wicked Shepherds, sheep scattering, Jer. 23:1-2………… 110

Eze. 34

God visits church with rebukes via attacks on her

Constitution

Independent schemes of church govt., new improvements

Fault finding in the Confession

Democracy …………………………………………… 111

The Lord’ rebuke ……………………………………………… 113

Arian errors of Professor Simons

still taught though he was forbidden to do so ……………… 115
Disregard for the flock and the Lord’s discipline ………….. 116

Calls received apart from Presbyteries ……………………. 118

Inferior numbers for a quorum ……………………………… 119

Reversal of unconstitutional acts

Innovations in preaching ………………………….. 120

God’s providence in causing leaders to act foolishly

on measures ……………………………………………… 122

Selection of pastors

Multiple days used for examination of gifts, home visits,

preaching by candidate ………………………………….. 127


Causeless grounds for not calling a minister,

appearance, doctrine, etc. ……………………………… 128

No obligation to laws of men ………………………………… 129

Protests against assembly, synod considered criminal ….. 132

National fasting ……………………………………………….. 140

Preaching

against loose moral discourses & neglecting Christ ….. 143

Little of Christ in people

Not much difference between heathen moralisms &

preaching ……………………………………………… 144

Morality verses Christ’s righteousness in preaching ………. 145

Preaching and the moral law ……………………………….. 146

Christ the only source of strength

Moral preachers and presupposition of natural power … 147

1 Cor. 1:18, 21, 24; 2:2; Acts 2:36, 37; 10:43, 44; 11:20-21

on preaching ……………………………………………….. 149

Preaching

Eloquent moralisms that exclude Christ

Entertainment

Christless moral sermons ………………………………… 150

Indicators of when God is about to leave a people

God gives people up to lifeless moral sermons ………… 151

Sermon applications

Self love, law of nature sufficient for happiness ……….. 152, 153

Catechism revised with out approval ……………………….. 154

Rebukes of the Lord, persistence in sin

Act against Church censures by magistrate …………… 155

Magistrate & power of the keys

Contrary to Confession

WCF 30.1,2; 23.3

Erastianism ………………………………………………… 156

Headship of Christ, not upheld ………………………………. 157

William Wishart

Charitable toward heathens

Soft proceedings against

Innovative words on Confessional matters……………… 158

Plain & ordinary sense of words necessary

Heretics put orthodox sense in their words

Rebuke to those who do not hold plains sense, Titus 1:3. 159

Zeal for truth & humility needed toward an erring church…… 164

Uncharitable attacks against weaker brethren

Marking narrow failings, mistakes, magnifying errors

instead of covering sins (as Christ enjoins) …………….. 167

Flock scattering by those overzealous for truth……………… 168, 169

Judicatories overturn foundation of govt.,

make defections greater than they are ………………….. 170

Episcopal Church

Differ only in govt., defections of, drift into Arminianism,

corruption of worship in, slide into Popish superstitions,

middle state for souls after death, corruption of Lord’s

Supper (as sacrifice), absolution by priest, baptismal

regeneration ………………………………………………… 171

Revivals

1732 or 1733, Saltzburg Germany, conversion from

Popish superstition, 20,000 people, loss of worldly goods

to enjoy pure preaching of gospel;

1735 -1736, Moravia Germany;

1736, Northampton New England, Jonathan Edwards … 173

Revivals (cont.)

Oxford England, Methodists,

Whitefield, Gilbert Tennant ……………………………… 175

Revivals, errors in,

Pretended visions, prophecy, great multitudes,

great attainments, Satan leading into error……………… 176

Praying societies in Edinburgh

Whitefield in Scotland 1741, Cambuslang 1742 ……….. 176

Psalm singing…………………………………………………… 176

Revival, effects of ……………………………………………… 179

Revival, opposition to by seceders zealous for truth ………. 181

1 Cor. 1:27 ……………………………………………………… 182

Revival, reactions in

Bodily faintings, ecstasies, exampes in Scripture-

Dan. 8:27; 10:8,9 ………………………………………… … 186

Examples of effects of revival on Reformers …………………. 187

Jonathan Edwards on revival …………………………………. 187

Need for awareness of sin

Strict subscription

Against natural reason

Trinity ……………………………………………………….. 188

Against:

Popish inclinations

Holy Days held equal to Lord’s Day

Arminianism, Pelagianism

Doctrines that exalt self

Self love

Magistrates assuming power of keys

Erastianism

Toleration of sects

Sacramental test ………………………………………… .. 189

Against:

Swearing by kissing gospels

Those in denial of:

National Church

Confession

Subordinate judicatories

Maintaining independency

Power of keys in hands of community not officers…. 190

Sins:


Atheism

Witchcraft

Fortune

Self seeking

Neglect of Family worship…………………………………. 191

Sins (cont.)

Opposition to Holy Spirit

Forgetting God’s mercies …………………………………. 192

Sins (cont.)

Following men’s teachings ……………………………….. 193

Decaying zeal to uphold truth

Misapplication of God’s word

Contempt of others who do not agree

Natural reason above supernatural revelation

Elevation of religion of nature

Freewill

Christ as moral pattern ……………………………………. 193

Confession of Faith, outward consent to & scarce reading of 194

Abuse of Lord’s Day …………………………………………… 195

Parental neglect ……………………………………………….. 196

Ministers, unsent but go anyway …………………………….. 197

Confession of Faith, warning against errorists not

adhering to; WCF 30.1,2…………………………………… 202

Remedies for unaccountable practices

Presbyteries have free access to moderate …………….. 203

Church Planting ………………………………………………… 204

Freedom to call minister without undue influence,

Qualifications for ministers

doctrine

godliness

experimental religion …………………………………… 205

Ruling elders ……………………………………………………. 206



Reproach on the Confession of Faith ………………………… 220








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