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A84819 This is a vvarning to all that profess Christianity and others. To beware of covetousness, which is idolatry. By G. Fox. Fox, George, 1624-1691. 1679 (1679) Wing F1933B; ESTC R213751 8,823 16

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wrought in man's heart both in Adam and Eve and the Jews and the Christians that go from God and disobey his Voice and Command For neither God nor Christ wrought any of these Evil Things in Man in the beginning nor since who is the Author of all Good And therefore these Evil Things must be purged out of Man by Christ's Blood and Baptism and by the Mortification and Circumcision of the Spirit of God And Christ said unto them to wit the Jews Take heed and beware of Covetousness for a man's Life consists not in the abundance of the things which he doth possess Oh! that all that are called Christians and all people would consider this blessed Doctrine of Christ the Heavenly Man and that they might come to understand and know what their Life does consist in then they would take heed and beware of Covetousness which is Idolatry Luke 12.15 And the Apostle Paul who had the Care of the Churches upon him he writes to the Corinthians Not to keep company with any man that is called a Brother that is a Fornicator or Covetous or Idolater or Railer or a Drunkard or an Extortioner with such an one they were not so much as to eat For such as professed Christianity and followed such Practices the Saints were neither to eat nor to keep company with them for they shamed their Profession of Christianity So here the Apostles and Saints the true Church had a Judgment given them and did judge out the Covetous Idolaters Fornicators Drunkards Railers c. from having any Fellowship with the Saints the true Church not as much as to eat with them nor to keep company with them of that spirit For he saith Neither Fornicators nor Thieves nor Drunkards nor Covetous Idolaters Railers and Extortioners c. shall inberit the Kingdom of God And the Apostle told the Corinthians that such were some of them but they were washed sanctified and justified from these things in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of God So these were washed from their Fornication Covetousness Idolatry Drunkenness Railing and Extortion and justified in the Name of Jesus and by the Spirit of God So the Apostle here doth not speak of the Fornicators Covetous Idolaters and Extortioners of the World which were without for God judgeth such But the Saints the Apostles and the true Church were to judge them that practised such things within the Church shewing the true Christians Church had a Power and not to keep company nor to eat with such professing Christ that were of such Practices knowing that the Unrighteous should not inherit the Kingdom of God nor Drunkards nor Fornicators Thieves Railers Extortioners nor Covetous Idolaters they that inherit these Evils were not like to inherit the Kingdom of God for they were defiled unwashed and not sanctified nor justified c. So that if the Saints did keep company or did eat with such unwashed unsanctified unjustified Persons or have Fellowship with them they took the Members of Christ and joyned them to an Harlot for he that is joyned to an Harlot is one Body For two saith he shall be one Flesh And therefore the Saints Bodies are the Members of Christ God forbid they should be joyned to Harlots or that they should make them Members of an Harlot And he that is joyned to the Lord is one Spirit and the Saints Bodies are the Temples of the Holy Ghost which proceeds from God and Christ and being bought with a Price the Blood of Christ and washed and sanctified and justified in the Name of Christ Jesus by the Spirit of God they are to glorifie God in their Bodies Souls and Spirits which are God's which he hath given them to glorifie him withal Glory to his Name forever And therefore all this old Leaven of Fornication Adultery Theft Covetousness Idolatry Drunkenness Revelling Extortion and all Unrighteousness Envy Malice and Wickedness must be purged out which is the World's God the Serpent hath wrought in that they may be a new Lump and keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread of Sincerity and Truth For Christ our Passover is sacrifice for us as you may see in 1 Cor. 5 6. chapters which was the Practice of the Church in the Apostles dayes and which should be so now to keep this Heavenly Passover with Unleavened Bread of Sincerity and Truth And further the Apostle tells the Church of Corinth in 2 Cor. 6. and explains himself with a great Care of the Church that they must not be Unequally Yoked together with Unbelievers So this is an Unequal Yoke to yoke Believers and Unbelievers together and giveth his Reason and saith What Fellowship hath Righteousness with Unrighteousness and what Communion hath Light with Darkness and what Concord hath Christ with Belial or what part hath a Believer with an Infidel and what Agreement hath the Temple of God with Idols Now they that go contrary to the Apostles Doctrine in these things have lost their Sense and Sight and Feeling for here is no Fellowship nor Unity nor Concord here is no Agreement nor no Part with such afore-mentioned that are out of the Truth but they are Unequally Yoked with such who are the Temples of the Living God that joyn with them they in whom God doth dwell and walk and he is their God and they are his People Wherefore come out from amongst them and be ye separate saith the Lord and touch not the Unclean Thing and I will receive you and I will be a Father unto you and ye shall be my Sons and Daughters saith God Almighty Here you may see what the Saints the Sons and Daughters of God are to forsake and not to touch nor make no agreement with not be yoked to but be separated from it that the Lord God Almighty may receive them And again the Apostle writes to the Ephesians chap. 4 5. That they should put away Lying and every man speak the Truth to his Neighbour for they are Members one of another and him that had stolen steal no more but let him labour working with his Hands the thing that is good And let no corrupt Communication proceed out of your Mouthes but that which is good tending to Edification which may minister Grace to the Hearers and all Filthiness Foolish Talking and Jesting which was not convenient was to be put away And the Saints the Church of Christ was not to have any Fellowship with such things the unfruitful Works of Darkness but rather reprove them And Fornication and all Uncleanness and Covetousness let it not be once named amongst you as becometh Saints For this you know to wit the Saints the Church of Christ That no whoremonger nor Unclean Person nor Covetous Man which is an Idolater mark Covetous that is an Idolater hath any Inheritance in the Kingdom of Christ and of God Here the Church of Christ had their Knowledge and had their Judgment to judge out these things that kept people
This is A WARNING To ALL that Profess Christianity And OTHERS To Beware of Covetousness which is Idolatry By G. Fox ALL People that do profess Christ and Christianity this is a Warning to you all to take heed of Covetousness for Covetousness was forbidden both in the Old Testament and the New and by the Law of God and by Christ and his Apostles For the Apostle saith Covetousness is Idolatry and it was forbidden both to the Rulers Priests Teachers and People in the old and new Testament that Idolatrous Practice And Christ saith It is one of those Evils that defiles a Man that comes out of him And the Lord said in his Law and Ten Commandments Thou shalt not Covet thy Neighbour's House thou shalt not Covet thy Neighbour's Wife nor his Man Servant nor his Maid Servant nor his Ox nor his Ass nor any thing that is thy Neighbour's Now if this Covetous Spirit be kept down then the Idolater is kept down and that Idol out of the Heart Also Theft and Stealing was forbidden in the old Covenant and so it is in the new and all are to labour in the thing that is Good Likewise Adultery was forbidden in the old Covenant and so it is in the new yea and more than outward Adultery For He that looks after a Woman to lust after her in the new Covenant Christ saith he hath committed Adultery with her already in his Heart And Bearing False Witness against his Neighbour was forbidden in the old Covenant so it is in the new For all are to speak Truth to their Neighbour and lye not And the Lord saith in the old Testament Thou shalt not Kill The Apostle saith in the new Covenant They did not wrestle with Flesh and Blood and their Weapons were not Carnal but Spiritual and Christ forbids Wrath in the new Covenant c. And Samuel who was a Judge and a Prophet who judged Isreal all the dayes of his Life 1 Sam. 7.15 and 1 Sam. 12.3 Samuel said I am old grey-headed and I have walked before you from my Childhood unto this day whose Ox or Ass have I taken or whom have I defrauded or oppressed or of whose hand have I received any Birbe to blind my Eyes therewith And the Children of Isreal answered and said Thou hast not frauded nor oppressed any of us neither hast thou received ought at any man's hand c. Now here was a Prophet and a Priest and a Judge clear from that Idolatry of Covetousness and hath not he out-stripped many of them which now call themselves Prophets and Priests Judges and Teachers that profess the new Covenant And David said Encline my Heart unto thy Testimonies and not to Covetousness Psalm 119.36 So if all who profess Christianity their Hearts were enclined to the Testimony of Jesus the Spirit of Prophecy that would keep down the Earthly Spirit of Covetousness which is Idolatry And as Solomon saith in Prov. 28.16 He that Hateth Covetousness shall prolong his dayes Then he that loveth Covetousness which is Idolatry shall not prolong his days And Jeremiah cryed out against the Jews in the old Covenant and said From the Greatest to the Least of them the Prophet and the Priest every one of them was given to Covetousness and to deal Falsly Jer. 6.13 and Isa 56.11 And yet these Priests and Prophets from the greatest to the least of them could make a Profession of the old Covenant And let the Priests and Prophets and People that profess the new Covenant see if they be not given to this Idolatry of Covetousness which was hated and forbidden of God and Christ and his People Prophets and Apostles And Jeremiah further cryes out against the Jews in Jer. 22.17 and said unto them Thine Eyes and thine Heart are for thy Covetousness and for shedding of Innocent Blood and for Oppression and for Violence Now this was the Jews Condition in the old Covenant when they forsook God and his Law and Spirit And now let all who profess themselves Christians in whom Christ doth not Reign which are not guided by the Spirit of God as the Prophets and Apostles were search and try themselves if the Fruits of their Eyes and Hearts and the Fruits of the Spirit that was in the Jews doth not appear and is manifest in them a Spirit that lusts to do Violence and Oppression and a spirit of Covetousness and of Persecution and of shedding innocent Blood which was forbidden by God and his Prophets in the old Covenant and by Christ and his Apostles in the new Covenant and by them abhorred and cryed out against But what was the End of the Jews which followed after that wicked spirit and went from the Lord And do those called Christians think in their Profession of the New Covenant that they must have Liberty in these evil things now which were forbidden in the time of the old Law and Covenant No no they are much more forbidden in the new And the Lord said unto Ezekiel That the Jews would come and fit before him as the Lord's People and they would hear his Words but they will not do them and with their Mouthes they would shew much Love but their Hearts went after their Covetousness Ezek. 33.31 Now will not the Priests and Professors of Christendom hear and say the Words of the New Covenant and Gospel and appear to shew much Zeal and Love for the Words of the New Testament but they will not do them nor practise them for their Hearts and Eyes go after their Covetousness which is Idolatry For have not you that profess the New Covenant in words done as they that professed the Old in words even coveted Goods Fields Houses and taken by Violence and Oppressed a Man in his Heritage and Devised Iniquity and wrought Evil upon your Beds and in the Morning Light have practised it because you had power in your hands And was not Wo pronounced against all such that professed the Old Covenant and yet walked contrary to it and much more against all such as are found in these Practices now who profess the New Micha chap. 2. And Habbakkuk cryes We to him that Covets an Evil Covetousness to his House that he may set his Nest on high that he may be delivered from the Power of the Evil c. Hab. 2.9 He tells them The Stone shall cry out of the Wall and the Beam of the Timber shall answer it against them And therefore let such covetous Persons that profess Christianity hearken and hear if the Stones out of the very Wall do not cry out against you and the Beam of the Timber does not answer it And Christ saith in Mark 7. That which cometh out of the Man from within his Heart defileth the Man to wit Evil Thoughts Adultery Fornication Murders Theft Covetousness Wickedness Deceit Blasphemies Pride Foolishness and an Evil Eye Now these are the Evils that defile men which the Devil the Serpent who is out of the Truth hath
destroy their own and others too the Teachers and others shewing that they are err'd from the Faith which Christ is the Author and Finisher of who saith Freely you have received freely give and Beware of Covetousness For the Apostle saith A Bishop must not be a Striker nor greedy of Filthy Lucre nor a Brawler nor Covetous but he must hold fast the faithful word and be blameless and such Bishops and Elders Teachers and Deacons were Timothy and Titus to ordain as you may see in 1 Tim. 3. and Titus 1. And they were to hold the Mystery of Faith in a pure Conscience And therefore how can any Bishops or Teachers Elders or Deacons be the Succeeders of them that the Apostles and Timothy and Titus ordained that are Strikers Persecutors Covetous and greedy of filthy Lucre yea and cast People into Prison whom they do not over-see nor teach nor preach to are not such erred from the Faith the Evil Beasts and Slow-belies that suppose Gain to be Godliness that serve not the Lord Jesus Christ but their own Bellies which the Apostle bid Titus Rebuke such sharply And now you may see such as coveted to be rich and were Persecutors and Strikers and greedy of filthy Lucre such Timothy and Titus were not to ordain those Bishops and Teachers Elders and Deacons for such were erred from the Faith then they were not like to hold the Mystery of Faith in a pure Conscience which Christ is the Author and Finisher of who saith Freely you have received freely give For the Apostle in Act. 20. saith that he was pure from the Blood of all men he took the Church to record that he had coveted no man's Silver Gold nor Apparel and said that the Church knew themselves that his Hands had ministred unto his Necessities them that were with him Now here was a clear free Minister of Christ And now let the Bishops Priests and Teachers c. in christendom try themselves their Practice by the Scripture and the Apostle's Example and the Command of Christ who saith Freely you have received freely give Can you say That you have coveted no man's Silver Gold nor Apparel either of your own people nor others whom you have not preacht to Can you say You are clear from the Blood of all men as the Apostle said and call the Christians to record If you do say You are will not the Goals testifie against you and the Courts and your own Hearts and Consciences also will witness against you And how many have been persecuted and prison'd by you till Death for not giving you Money Tythes whom you do no work for what persecuting and haling before Courts have you made You cannot call the Christians to record that you are clear from the Blood of all men that you Covet no man's Silver Gold nor Apparel and that you labour with your Hands for your own Necessities others and that you are not greedy of filthy Lucre and are not Strikers and Persecutors nor are not them that do covet after Money and the Riches of this World that you do not give freely as Christ commands manifesting that you have not received freely from him but that you are erred from the Faith of Christ by which the Apostles lived and from the Conversation of the Saints in the primitive times For the Apostle saith to the Church Let your Conversation be without Covetousness and be content with such things as you have And the Lord saith I will never leave thee nor forsake thee Heb. 13.5 Josh 1.5 And so this should be the Conversation of all that profess Christ Jesus and then they would covet after the best Gifts and not after the earthly things and follow after Love and Charity And the Apostle saith Be ye Followers of me even as I am also of Christ And so it is clear the Church of the true Christians is not to follow any Teacher but as he followeth Christ in his Life Faith Practice and Doctrine And if they make a Profession of the Form of Godliness without the Power and Spirit and Truth they were to turn away from them and not to follow them But as every one hath received Christ Jesus so walk in him in Humility G. F. The 5th Moneth 1679. THE END