Some remarkable passages of the life and death of Master Alexander Peden
LIFE AND DEATH
Late Minister of the Gospel at New-Glenluce in Galloway.
Printed in the Year, M. D CC LX.
LIFE AND DEATH
Late Minister of the Gospel at New-Glenluce in Galloway.
Who died the 28th Day of January, 1686, being about 60 Years of Age.
1.HE was born in the parish of Sorn, in the sheriffdom of Air: after that he past his courses at the college, he was imployed for sometime to be school-master, precentor and session clerk, to Mr. John Guthrie minister of the gospel at Tarbolton. When he was about to enter to the ministry, a young woman fell to be with child in adultery, to a servant in that house where he stayed; when she found herself with child, she told the father thereof; he said, I'll run for it, and go to Ireland, father it upon Mr. Peden, he has more to help thee and bring it up (he having a piece of heritage) than I have. The same day that he was to get an act of license, she came in before the presbytry, and said, I hear your are to license Mr. Peden to be a minister; do it not, for I am with child to him. He being without at the time, was called in by the moderator; and being questioned about it, he said, I am surprised, I cannot speak; but let none entertain an ill thought of me, for I am utterly free of it, and God will vindicate me in his own time and way. He went home and walked at a water side upwards of 24 hours, & would neither eat nor drink, at last he came in and said, Give me meat and drink, for I have got what I was seeking, and I will be vindicated,and that poor unhappy lass will pay dear for it in her life, and will make a dismal end, and for this surfeit of grief that she hath given me, there shall never one of her sex come into my bosom: and accordingly he ⟨never⟩ married. There are various reports of the way ⟨that he⟩ was vindicated. Some say, that in the time she ⟨was in⟩ child-birth, Mr. Guthrie charged her to give ⟨account⟩ who was the father of that child, and discharged ⟨women⟩ to be helpful to her, until she did it: some say that ⟨she⟩ confessed, others that she remained obstinate; some of ⟨the⟩ people (when I made enquiry about it in that ⟨countryside)⟩ affirmed, that after the presbytry had been at all ⟨pains⟩ about it, & could get no satisfaction, they appointed ⟨Mr.⟩ Guthrie to give a full relation of the whole before ⟨the⟩ congregation, which he did, and the same day the ⟨father⟩ of that child was present: and when he heard Mr. Guthrie begin to read, stood up, and desired him to halt, ⟨and⟩ said, I am the father of that child, and I desired her to ⟨father⟩ it upon Mr. Peden, which has been a great trouble of conscience to me, and I could get no rest till I came home to declare it. However, it is certain that after ⟨she⟩ was married, and every thing went cross to them, ⟨and⟩ wandred from place to place, and were reduced to ⟨great⟩ poverty, at last she came to that same spot of ⟨ground⟩ where he stayed upwards of 24 hours, and made ⟨away⟩ with herself.
2. After this he was three years settled minister at new Glenluce in Galloway and when he was obliged by the violence and tyranny of that time to leave that parish, he lectured upon the 20th chap. of the Acts from the #(illegible text) verse to the end, and preached upon the 31st verse in the forenoon, 'Therefore watch and remember, that by the space of three years, I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.' Asserting that he had declared the whole counsel of God, & had keeped nothing back, and protested that he was free of the blood of all souls. And in the afternoon he preached on the ⟨32d⟩ verse, And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them that are sanctified.' Which was a weeping day in that kirk, the greater part could not contain themselves: he many times requested them to be silent, but they sorrowed most of all that he told them that they should never see his face in that pulpit again. He continued until night, & when he closed the pulpit door, he knocked hard upon it three times with his bible, saying three times over, I arrest thee in my Master's name, that never none enter thee, but such as comes in at the door as I did. Accordingly, neither curate nor indulged entred that pulpit until ⟨after the⟩ revolution, that a Presbyterian minister opened it. ⟨I had⟩ this account from old persons in that parish, who ⟨were⟩ witnesses to it, worthy of all credit.
⟨3.⟩ After this he joined with that honest zealous ⟨handful in⟩ the year 1666, that was broken at Pentland hills, ⟨and came⟩ the length of Clyde with them, where he had ⟨a melancholy⟩ view of their end, and parted with them there.
James Cubison of Paluchbeaties, my informer, ⟨to whom⟩ he told this, he said to him, Sir, you did well ⟨to be⟩ parted with them, seeing you were persuaded they ⟨would⟩ fall and flee before the enemy. Glory, glory to ⟨God⟩ that he sent me not to hell immediately, for I ⟨should⟩ have stayed with them, tho' I should have been ⟨cut all⟩ in pieces
⟨4.⟩ That night the Lord's people fell & fled before the ⟨enemy⟩ at Pentland hills, he was in a friend's house in ⟨Carrick⟩, sixty miles from Edinburgh; his landlord ⟨seeing⟩ him mightily troubled, enquired how it was with ⟨him,⟩ he said, To morrow I will speak with you; & ⟨desire some⟩ candle; that night he went to bed; the next ⟨morning⟩ calling early to his land-lord, said, I have sad ⟨news⟩ to tell you, our friends that were together in arms ⟨appearing⟩ for Christ's interest, are now broken, killed, ⟨taken⟩ and fled every man. The good-man said, Lord ⟨forbid⟩ that be true. He said, Why do you speak so? ⟨There⟩ is a great part of our friends prisoners in ⟨Edinburgh⟩. About 48 hours thereafter, they were fully ⟨confirmed⟩ in the truth of it.
⟨5.⟩ After this, in June 1673, he was taken by major ⟨Cockburn⟩ in the house of Hugh Ferguson of Knockdow ⟨Carrick⟩, who constrained him to tarry ail night. Mr. ⟨Peden⟩ told him, that it would be a dear night's quarters ⟨to them⟩ both. Accordingly they were both carried ⟨prisoners⟩ to Edinburgh, Hugh Ferguson was fin'd in a ⟨thousand⟩ merks for reset, harbour and converse with ⟨him.⟩ The council ordered 50l. sterling to be paid to the ⟨major⟩ out of the fines, and ordained him to divide 25l. (illegible text)ing among among the party that apprehended them; ⟨sometime⟩ after examination he sent prisoner to the Bass, ⟨where⟩ he there and at Edinburgh until ⟨December⟩ 1678, that he was banished.
6. While prisoner in the Bass one sabbath morning, ⟨being⟩ about the publick worship of God, a young lass ⟨about⟩ the age of 13 or 14 years, came to the chamber ⟨door⟩ mocking with loud laughter; he said, Poor thing, ⟨thou⟩ mocks and laughs at the worship of God, but ere long God shall write such a sudden surprizing judgment on thee, that shall stay thy Laughing, and thou shalt not escape it. Very shortly after, she was walking upon the rock, and there came a blast of wind & swept her off in o the sea, where she was lost.
While prisoner there, one day walking upon the rock some soldiers passing by him, one of them cried, ⟨The⟩ devil take him. He said, Fy, fy, poor man, thou knowest not what thou art saying, but thou wilt repent that. At which words the soldier stood astonished, and ⟨went⟩ to the guard distracted, crying aloud for Mr. Peden, saying. The devil would immediately take him away; ⟨he⟩ came to him again, & found him in his right mind under deep convictions of great guilt; the guard being ⟨to⟩ change, they desired him to go to his arms, he refused and said, He would lift no arms against Jesus Christ ⟨his⟩ cause, and persecute his people, I have done that ⟨too⟩ long. The governour threatned him with death ⟨tomorrow⟩ about 10 of the clock, he confidently said, ⟨three⟩ times, Tho he should tear all his body in pieces, ⟨he⟩ should never lift arms that way. About three days ⟨after⟩ the governour put him out of the garrison, setting him ashore, he having a wife and children, took a house in east Lothian, where he became a singular Christian. Mr. Peden told these astonishing passages to the foresaid John Cubison and others who informed me.
7. When brought from the Bass to Edinburgh, and sentence of banishment past upon him, in ⟨December⟩ 1678, and 60 more fellow prisoners for the same cause to go to America, never to be seen in Scotland again under the pain of death; after this sentence was past he several times said, that the ship was not yet ⟨built⟩ that should take him and these prisoners to Virginia or any other of the English plantations in America. One James Kay a solid grave Christian, being one of them that lived in or about the water of Leith, told me this, that Mr. Peden, said to him, James, when your wife comes in let me see your wife; which he did, going to Mr. Peden's room, after some discourse, he called for a drink, and when he sought a blessing, he said Good Lord, let not James Kay's wife miss her husband until thou return him to her in peace and safety, which we are sure will be sooner than either he or she is looking for, accordingly that same day month that he parted with her at Lieth, he came home to her at the water of Lieth.
8. When they were on ship board in the road of Lieth there was a report that the enemies were to send down thumbikins to keep them from rebelling: at the report of this they were discouraged; he came above the deck, and said, Why are ye so discouraged? You need not fear, there will neither thumbikins nor bootikins come here, lift up your hearts & heads for the day of your redemption draweth near; if we were once at London we will be all set at liberty. And when sailing in the voyage, praying publickly, he said, Lord such is the enemies hatred at thee, and malice at us, for thy sake, that they will not let us stay in thy land of Scotland to serve thee, tho some of us have nothing but the canopy of thy heavens above us, and thy earth to trade upon; but, Lord, we bless thy name, that will cut short our voyage & frustrate thy enemies of their wicked design, and will not get us where they intend, and some of us shall go richer home, than we came from home. James Pride, who lived at Fife, an honest man being one of them, he said, many times he could assert the truth of this; for he came safely home, beside other things, he bought two cows, and before that he never had one. I had these accounts both from the foresaid James Kay, and Robert Punton a known public man, worthy of all credit, who was also under the same sentence, who lived in the parish of Dalmeny, near the Queens Ferry.
9. When they arrived at London, the skipper who received them at Leith was to carry them no further; the skipper who was to receive them there, and to carry them to Virginia, came to see them, they being represented to him as thieves, robbers, and evil-doers, but when he found they were all grave Christian men, banished for presbyterian principles, he said, he would sail the sea with none such. In this confusion, that the one skipper would not receive them, and the other would keep them no longer, and being expensive to maintain them, they were all set at liberty. Others reported that both skippers got compliments by friends at London, however it is certain they were safely set free, without any imposition of bonds or oaths; & friends at London; and in their way homeward thro England shewed much kindness unto them.
10. That dismal day, the 22d of June, in the year 1679, at Bothwel bridge, that the Lord's people fell & fled before the enemy, he was forty miles distant, near the border, kept him retired until the middle of the day, that some friend laid t© him. Sir, the people are waiting for sermon; he said. Let the people go to their prayers, for me I neither can nor will preach any this day; for our friends are fallen and fled before the enemy at Hamilton, and they are hagging and hashing them down, and their blood is running like water.
11. After this, he was preaching in Galloway, in the forenoon he prayed earnestly for the prisoners taken at & about Bothwel; but in the afternoon when he began to pray for them he halted & said, Our friends at Edinburgh, the prisoners, have done somewhat to save their lives that shall not do with them, but the sea billows shall be many of their winding-sheets, & the few of them that escape shall not be useful to God in their generation. Which was sadly verified thereafter. That which the greatest part of these prisoners did, was the taking of that bond, commonly called the black bond after Bothwel, wherein they acknowledged their appearance in arms for the defence of the gospel and their own lives to be rebellion, and engaged themselves never to make any more opposition; upon the doing of which these Perfidious enemies promis d them life and liberty; this with the cursed and subtile arguments & advices of ministers, who went into the new yard, where they were prisoners, particularly Mr. Hugh Kennedy, Mr. William Ceighton, Mr. Edward Jamieson, and Mr. George Johnston: these took their turn in the yard, where the prisoners were, together with a letter that was sent from that Erastian meeting of ministers, met at Edinburgh in August 1679, for the accepting of a third indulgence with a cautionary bond. Notwithstanding of the enemies promise, and the unhappy advices of these ministers not indulged, after they were ensnared in this foul compliance, banished 255, whereof 203 perished in the Orkney sea. This foul step, as some of them told me, both in their life, and when dying, lay heavy upon them all their days; and that these unhappy arguments and advices of ministers prevailed more with them, than the enemies promise of life and liberty.
In August, 1679, fifteen of Bothwel prisoners got indictments of death. Mr. Edward Jamieson, a worthy presbyterian minister, as Mr. Woodrow calls him, was sent from that Erastian meeting of ministers into the tolbooth to these fifteen, who urged the lawfulness of taking the bond to save their lives; and the refusal of it would be a reflection to religion and the cause they had appeared for, and a throwing away their lives, for which their friends would not be able to vindicate them. He prevailed with thirteen of them; this sowr'd in the stomachs of some of these thirteen, and lay heavy upon them, both in their life and death. These prisoners taken at and about the time of Bothwel, were reckoned about 1500.
The faithful Mr. John Blackader did write to these prisoners disswading them from that foul compliance, and some worthy persons of these prisoners whom he wrote to, said to me with tears, that they slighted his advice and followed the unhappy advices of these ministers, who were making peace with the enemies of God, & followed their foul steps, for which they would go mourning to their graves. I heard the same Mr. Blackader preach his last public sermon, before his falling into the enemies hands, in the night-time, in the fields, in the parish of Livingstone, upon the side of the muir, at the new house, on the 23 of March, after Bothwel, where he lectured upon Micah iv from verse 9. where he asserted, That the nearer the delivery, our pains and showers would come thicker and sorer upon us; and that we had been in the fields, but e'er we were delivered, we would go down to Babylon, that either Popery would overspread this land, or be at the breaking in upon us, like an inundation of water: & preached upon that text, That no man should be moved with these afilictions: for ye yourselves know that ye are appointed thereunto: Where he insisted upon what moving & shaking dispensations the Lord had exercised his people with in former ages, especially that man of God that went to Jeraboam's Bethel, and delivered his commission faithfully, and yet turned out of the way by an old lying prophet, how moving and stumbling the manner of his death was to all Israel; and earnestly requested us to take good heed to what minister we heard, and what advice we followed. When he prayed, he blessed the Lord that he was free of both band and rope, and that he was as clearly willing to hold up the public blest standard of the gospel as ever; and said, The Lord rebuke, give repentance and forgiveness to these ministers that persuaded these prisoners to take that bond: For their perishing by sea, was more moving & shocking to him, than if some thousands of them had been slain in the field.
He was thereafter taken the 6th of April, by major Johnston in Edinburgh, and detained prisoner in the Bass, where he died. As the interest of Christ lay near his heart thro' his life, among his last words he said, The Lord will defend his own cause.
12. After the publick murdering of these two worthy women-martyrs, Isobel Alison and Marion Harvie, in the Grass-market of Edinburgh, January 1681, he was in Galloway, a professor of some note, who had more carnal wit and policy than to suffer him to be honest & faithful, after reasoning upon the grounds of their sufferings, affirmed, that they would never be reckoned among the number of the martyrs: Mr. Peden said, after musing a little, Let alone, you'll never be honour'd with such a death, and for what you have said against these two worthy lasses, your death will be both sudden and surprising. Which was very shortly thereafter; the man standing before the fire smoaking his pipe, dropt down dead, and that without speaking more.
13. In the month of June 1682, he was in the house of James Brown in Paddock holm above Douglass, John Wilson in Lanerk was with him, who suffered martyrdom in the Grass-market of Edinburgh the next year, May 1683. He lectured at night upon the vii. chapter of Amos, and repeated these words in the 9 verse three, And I will rise against the house of Jeraboam with the sword. He laid his hand on the said John, and said, John, have at the unhappy name of Stewarts, off the throne shall they go, if all the world should set side to hold them on. Afterwards he brake out in a rapture about our martyrs, saying, They were going off the stage with fresh gales and full sails, & now they are all glancing in glory; O if ye saw them, they would flee you out of your wits. He again laid his hand upon the said John, and said, Encourage yourself in the Lord & hold fast, John, for you'll win up yonder shortly, and get on all your braws. That night he went to the fields; to-morrow about 6 o'clock John went to seek him, and found him coming to the house. He said, John, let us go from this house, for the devil is about it, and will take his prey with him. John said, we will take breakfast e'er we go, 'tis a question when we'll get the offer again. He answered, No, no; I will not eat bread in this place, our landlord is an unhappy man, the devil will get him shortly, for he will hang himself. Which very shortly came to pass; his daughter Jean Brown was the first that got him in her arms, hanging in the stable. She was reckoned by all to be a grave Christian lass but from that day never had her health, and died of a decay at last, after she had been sometime in prison for her principles. This passage the same John Wilson reported several times to many, and some alive can bear witness to the truth of it.
14. Tn the year 1680, after the murdering of Mr. Cameron & these worthies with him at Airdsmoss, he was near Machline in the shire of Air, one Robert Brown of Cross-house, who lived near the New-mills, & one Hugh Pinaneve, factor to the earl of Lowdon stabled their horses in that house where he was, and went to a fair in Machline; and in the afternoon, when they came to take away their horses, they got a drink, & in the time of it, the said Hugh a wicked wretch both in principle and practice, broke out in railing against sufferers, particularly against Mr. Cameron; Mr. Peden being in another room overhearing all, was so grieved that he came to the chamber door and said to the said Hugh, Sir, hold your peace, e'er 12 o'clock thou shalt know what for man Mr. Cameron was, God shall punish that blasphemous mouth and cursed tongue of yours in such a manner as shall be astonishing to all that shall see you, and shall set you up as a beacon to all railing Rabshakehs. Robert Brown knowing Mr. Peden, hasted to his horse, being persuaded that Mr. Peden's words would not fall to the ground, and fearing that some mischief might befal him for being in the said Hugh's company, the rode hard home. Robert went to his own house, and Hugh to the earl's house, and casting off his boots, he was struck with such a sickness and pain thro' his body, with his mouth so wide, and his tongue hanging so far out in a fearful manner, they sent for the said Robert, being used to take blood, he got some blood of him but all in vain, he died before mid-night. The said Robert, an old man, told me this passage when in prison together.
15. In the year 1682 he was in Kyle, and preached upon that text, the plowers plowed upon my back, & drew long the furrows. Where he said, would ye know who first yoked this plow? it was cursed Cain when he drew his furrows so long & also deep, that he let out the heart blood of his brother Abel; and all his cursed seed has, & will gang summer & winter, frost & fresh weather, till the world's end; and at the sound of the last trumpet, when all are in a flame, their theats will burn, and their swingle-trees will fall to the ground, the plow-men will lose their grips of the plow, and the gad-men will throw away their gads; & then, O the yelling & shrieking that will be among all this cursed seed, clapping their hands & crying to the hills and mountains to cover them from the face of the Lamb, & of him that sits upon the throne, for their hatred of him, and malice at his people.
After sermon, when marrying a pair of folks, when the man had the woman by the hand, he said, Indeed man, you have a bonny bride by the hand, I see a covetous devil in her, she is both a thief and a whore, let her go, you will be ashamed of her. The man keeping fast her hand, he said, you will not take my advice, but it will tend to thy disgrace. After marriage, when praying he said, Good Lord, many a plow hath been yoked on the back of thy church in Scotland, pagans yoked theirs, Antichrist yoked his, and Prelacy hers, and now the plagued Erastian indulged, they have yoked theirs, & ill it becomes them; good Lord, cut their theets, that their swingle-trees may fall to the ground. Ensign John Kirkland was witness to this sermon & marriage; he was my very dear acquaintance, who told me several times of this, and more of that sermon.
16. About the same time he was marrying two pair of folks, he said to the one, Stand by I will not marry you this day: The bridegroom was anxious to know the reason, after enquiring privately, he said, You will thank me for this afterwards, and think yourself well quat of her, for she is with child to another wife's husband; which was matter of fact, as time afterwards discovered.
17. Shortly after that sad stroke at Bothwel, he went to Ireland, but did not stay long at that time, in his travels thro' Galloway, he came to a house, and looking in the goodman's face he said. They call you an honest man, but if you be so, you look not like it, you will not long keep that name, but will discover yourself to be what you are. And shortly after he was made to flee for sheep stealing. In that short time he was in Ireland, the governor required of all presbyterian ministers that were in Ireland, that they should give it under their hand that they had no accession to the late rebellion at Bothwel Bridge, in Scotland, & that they did not approve of it: which the most part did, & sent Mr. Thomas Gowans a Scotsman, and one Mr. Paton from the north of Ireland to Dublin, to present it to the lord lieutenant. The which when Mr Peden heard, he said, Mr. Gowans and his brother Mr. Paton are sent and gone the devil's errand, but God will arrest them by the gate. Accordingly Mr Gowans by the way was struck with a sore sickness, and Mr. Paton fell from his horse, and broke or crusht his leg, and both of them were detained beyond expectation. I had this account from some worthy christians when I was in Ireland.
18. In the yar 1682, he married John Brown in Kyle, at his own house in Priest-hall, that singular Christian, upon Marion Weir, after marriage he said to the bride, Marion, you have got a good man to be your husband, but you will not enjoy him long. prize his company, and keep linen by you to be his winding sheet, for you will need it when you are not looking for it, and it will be a bloody one.
This came sadly to pass in the beginning of May 1685, as afterwards shall be made appear.
19. After this, in the year 1682, he went to Ireland again, and came to the house of William Steel in Glenwharry, in the county of Antrim, he enquired at Mrs. Steel if she wanted a servant for threshing victual? She said, they did, and enquired what his wages were a day or a week: He said, The common rate was a common rule; to which she assented. At night he was put to the barn to bed with the servant lad, and that night he spent in prayer and groaning up and down the barn. To morrow he threshed victual with the lad, and the next night he spent the same way; the second day in the morning the lad said to his mistress, This man sleeps none, but groans and prays all night, I got no sleep for him, He threshes very well, and is not sparing of himself, tho I think he has not been used with it, for he can do nothing to the botteling and ordering of the barn; and when I put the barn in order, he goes to such a place, and there he prays for the afflicted church of Scotland, and names so many people in the furnace. He wrought the second day, and his mistress watched & overheard him praying as the lad had said; at night she desired her husband to enquire if he was a minister, which he did, and desired him to be free with him, and he should not only be no enemy to him. but a friend to him. Mr. Peden said, he was not ashamed of his office; and gave an account of his circumstances: he was no more set to work, nor to lie with the lad, and he staid a considerable time in that place, and was a blessed instrument in the conversion of some, and civilizing of others, tho that place was noted for a rude wild people, and the fruits of his labour appear unto this day. There was a servant lass in that house that he could not look upon but with frowns; and sometimes, when at family worship he said, pointing to her with a frowning countenance, You come from the barn and from the byer reeking in your lusts, and sits down among us, we do not want you nor none such. At last he said to William Steel and his wife, Put away that unhappy lass from your house, for she will be a stain to your family, for she is with child and will murther it, and will be punished for the same; which accordingly came to pass, and she was burnt at Craig-Fergus, which is the usual punishment of murderers of children there. I had this account from John Muirhead, who staid much in that house, and other Christian people when I was in Ireland.
20. On the 2d day of August 1684, he was in a Christian Scots woman's house, called Margret Lumbernor; that day there was an extraordinary shower of big hail, such as he had never seen the like. She said, What can be the meaning of this extraordinary hail? He said, Within a few years there will be an extraordinary storm and shower of judgment poured out upon Ireland; but Meg, said he, you shall not live to see it. And accordingly she died before that rebellion; and the rest had a sad accomplishment at Derry and the water of Boyn.
21. On the second of February 1685, he was in the house of one Mr. Vernor, at night he and John Kilpatrick, Mrs. Vernor's father, a very old worthy Christian; he said to him, John, the world may very well want you and me. John said, Sir, I have been very fruitless and useless all my days, & the world may well want me. but your death will be a great loss. Well John, said he, you and I will be both in heaven shortly; but tho you be much older than I, my soul will get the forestart of yours, for I will be first in heaven; but your body will have the advantage of mine, for ye will get rest in your grave until the resurrection; but for me I must go to the bloody land (this was his ordinary way of speaking, bloody or sinful land, when he spake of Scotland) and die there, and the enemies out of their great wickedness will lift my corps unto another place; but I am very indifferent, John, for I know my body shall ly among the dust of the martyrs, & tho they should take my old bones and make whistles of them, they will all be gathered together in the morning of the resurrection; and then, John, yo and I, and all that will be found having on Christ's righteousness, will get day about with them, and give oer hearty assent to their eternal sentence of damnation. The same night after this discourse while about family worship, about 10 or 11 o clock explaining the portion of scripture he read, he suddenly halted and harkned, and said three times over, What's this I hear? and harkned ⟨again⟩ a little time, and clapt his hands, and said, I hear a dead shot ⟨at⟩ the throne of Britain; let him go yonder, he has been ⟨a⟩ black sight to these lands, especially to poor Scotland; we're well quit of him; there has been many a wasted ⟨prayer⟩ wared on him. And it was concluded by all, ⟨the⟩ same hour, in the same night, that unhappy man Charles II. died. I had this account from John Muirhead and others, who were present, and confirmed in ⟨the⟩ truth of it by some worthy Christians when I was in Ireland.
22. Upon the 4th of February following, 1685, he ⟨preached⟩ at a wood-side, near the said Mr. Vernor's ⟨house⟩; he read the whole of the 49 Psalm; after ⟨reading⟩, he charged his hearers, that none of them open ⟨their⟩ mouths to sing, but those that could do it knowingly and believingly; for some few lines, few opened ⟨their⟩ mouth; but as John Muirhead, and John Waddel, ⟨who⟩ were present, told solid Christians and great sufferers, who lived and died in the parish of Cambusnethen ⟨or⟩ Shots, said to me, they and the great part could not ⟨contain⟩ and forbear singing, but brake out with their ⟨hearts⟩ and whole strength, so that they were never witness to such loud singing thro the whole Psalm. After ⟨singing⟩, in preface he cried out, Pack and let us go to ⟨Scotland⟩, let us flee from one devouring sword and go to another; the poor honest lads in Scotland are running upon the hills, & have little either of meat or drink, ⟨but⟩ cold and hunger; and the bloody enemy are pursuing and murdering them wherever they find them; ⟨their⟩ blood is running like water upon scaffolds & fields: ⟨rise⟩ let us go & take part with them, for we fear they bar ⟨us⟩ out of heaven. Oh, secure Ireland, a dreadful day ⟨is⟩ coming upon thee within a few years, that they shall ⟨ride⟩ many miles & shall not see a reeking house in thee; ⟨Oh,⟩ hunger, hunger Derry, many a pale face shall be ⟨in⟩ thee; and fire, fire upon a town; whose name I have ⟨forgot⟩, which was all burnt to ashes. This had an exact accomplishment four years thereafter. And for the ⟨profanity⟩ of England, and formality & security of Ireland, for the loathing and contempt of the gospel, covenant-breaking and burning and innocent blood shed ⟨in⟩ Scotland, none of these lands shall escape, e'er all ⟨be⟩ done. But notwithstanding of all this, I'll tell you ⟨good⟩ news, keep in mind this year, month and day, & ⟨remember⟩ that I told you, that the enemies have got a ⟨shot⟩ beneath their right wing, and they may rise and fly ⟨like⟩ a shot bird but e'er this day seven years, the strongest of them all shall fall. Then upon the sixth, he was in that wood all day, and at night he came to the said Mr. Vernor's house, where several of our Scots sufferers were; he said. Why are ye so discouraged? I know ye've got ill news of the dreadful murder of our friends in Scotland but I will tell you good news, that unhappy, treacherous, leacherous man, who has made the Lord's people in Scotland tremble these years by gone has got his last glut in a lordly dish from his brother and he is lying with his tongue cold in his mouth. I hear news of this came not to Ireland, for 24 hours thereafter. The foresaid John Muirhead, and John Waddel and others of our Scots sufferers, who had heard him preach the sabbath day before, concluded, this was the shot beneath the right wing that he spoke of, Charles II. being dead the Friday's night before.
23. After this he longed to be out of Ireland, what thro the fearful apprehensions of that dismal day of rebellion in Ireland, that came upon it four years thereafter, and that he might take part with the sufferers of Scotland; He came near the coast one morning; John Muirhead came to him lying within a hedge; he said, Have ye any news, John? John said, There is great fear of the Irish arising: he said, No, no, the time of their rising is not yet; but they will rise, and dreadful will it be at last. He was long detained waiting for a bark not daring to go to public ports, but to some remote creek of the sea, : Alexander Gordon of Kinstuir in Galloway had agreed with one: but Mr. Peden would not sail the sea with him, Mr. Peden having something ⟨of⟩ the foresight of what he did prove afterwards: in the beginning of August, before this Kinstuir was relieved at Enterken-path, going from Dumfries to Edinburgh prisoner; when the news of it came to Ireland, our Scots sufferers their acquaintance, were glad of the news, especially that Kinstuir was escaped. He said, What means all this Kinstuiring? there's some of them relieved there, that one of them is worth many of him, ye'll all be ashaned of him e'er all be done. Being in this strait, he said to Robert Wark, an old worthy christian worthy of credit, Robert, go and take such a man with you, & the first bark ye can find, compel them, for they will be like the dogs in Egypt, no one of them will move their tongue against you; accordingly Robert and his comerade found it so, and brought her to that secret place where he was. When Robert and his comerade came and told him, he was glad, and very kind & free; but he seemed to be under a cloud at that time: he said, ⟨Lads⟩, I have lost my prospect wherewith I was wont to ⟨look⟩ over to the bloody land and tell you and others ⟨what⟩ enemies and friends were doing: the devil and I ⟨muddles⟩ and rides time about upon other: but if I were ⟨uppermost⟩ again, I shall ride hard, and spurgaw well: ⟨I⟩ have been praying for a swift passage over to the ⟨sinful⟩ land, come of us what will; and now Alexander ⟨Gordon⟩ is away with my prayer wind; but it were good ⟨for⟩ the remnant in Scotland, he never saw it; for, as ⟨the⟩ Lord lives, he shall wound that interest e'er he go ⟨off⟩ the stage. Which sadly came to pass in his life, & ⟨was⟩ a reproach to it at his death A little before they ⟨came⟩ off, he baptized a child to John Maxwell a Glasgow man, who was fled over from the persecution; in ⟨his⟩ discourse before baptism, he burst out into a rapture ⟨foretelling⟩ that black day that came upon Ireland, and ⟨sad⟩ days to Scotland, and then good days. Mrs. ⟨Maxwell⟩, or Mary Elphinston, the mother of the child, yet ⟨alive⟩ in Glasgow, told me this, that in the time he was ⟨asserting⟩ these things, she was thinking and wondering what ground of assurance he had for them; he cried ⟨aloud⟩, shaking his hand at her, and said, Woman, thou ⟨art⟩ thinking and wondering within thyself, whether I ⟨am⟩ speaking those things out of the visions of my own ⟨head⟩, or if I be taught by the spirit of God; but I tell ⟨thee⟩ woman, thou shalt live & see that I am not mistaken. ⟨She⟩ told me, that she was very lately delivered, and out ⟨of⟩ her great desire to have her child baptized before he ⟨came⟩ off, that she took travel too soon, and weak, ⟨and⟩ so surprized with telling her the thoughts of her ⟨heart⟩, that she was in danger of falling off the chair. ⟨At⟩ this exercise also he told them, that he could not win ⟨off till⟩ he got this , and this was all the drink money he had left in Ireland, and to the family (pointing ⟨to⟩ his landlord) for all the kindness he had met with ⟨from⟩ them. After baptism they got breakfast: there ⟨was⟩ plenty of bread upon the table, and seeking a ⟨blessing⟩, he put his hand beneath the bread, holding it up ⟨with much⟩ affection and tears, said, Lord, there is a well ⟨covered⟩ table and plenty of bread; but what comes of ⟨the⟩ poor, young, kindly, honest lad Renwick, that ⟨shames us⟩ all, in staying and holding up his fainting ⟨mother's⟩ head, when of all the children she has brought ⟨forth there's⟩ none will avowedly take by the hand; and the poor, cold, hungry lads upon the hills; for the ⟨honour⟩ of thine own cause, let them not starve, thou ⟨caused, a ravenous beast⟩, greedy of flesh itself, ⟨to feed⟩ Elijah, and then fed thy people in the wilderness ⟨with⟩ angels food, and blessed a few loaves and small fishes ⟨and⟩ made them sufficient for many, and had experience ⟨of⟩ want, weariness, cold and hunger, and enemies ⟨daily⟩ hunting for thy life while in the world; look to ⟨them⟩ and provide for them; we ll get the black-stone ⟨for⟩ leaving him and them.
The waiters being advertised of the bark being in that place, they and other people⟨waiters⟩ and altogether for fear of the garrison of ⟨Craigfergus⟩ apprehending them, being near to it, which ⟨obliged⟩ them to come off immediately, however it might be with them, after that he and 26 of our Scots ⟨sufferers⟩ came aboard, he stood upon the deck and ⟨prayed⟩, being not the least wind, where he made a ⟨rehearsal⟩ of times and places, when and where the Lord had ⟨heard⟩ and answered them in the day of distress, and now they were in a great strait. Waving his hand to ⟨the⟩ west, from whence he desired the wind, said, Lord, ⟨give⟩ us a loof-full of wind; fill the sails, Lord, and give ⟨us a⟩ fresh gale, and let us have a swift passage over to the bloody land, come of us what will. John Muirhead, Robert Wark and others who were present told me that when he began to pray, the sails were all hanging straight down, but e'er he ended, they were all ⟨like⟩ blown bladders; they put out the waiters and other ⟨people⟩, and got a very swift and safe passage. The 26 ⟨Scots⟩ sufferers that were with him, having provided themselves with arms, and being designed to return to Scotland, being then such a noise of killing (and indeed ⟨the⟩ din was no greater than the deed) it being then ⟨in⟩ the heat of killing time, in the end of February 1685, ⟨when⟩ at exercise at night in the bark, he said, Lord, ⟨thou⟩ knowest thir lads are hot spirited, lay an arrest ⟨upon⟩ them that they may not appear; their time is not ⟨yet⟩, tho Monmouth and Argyll be coming, they'll work ⟨no⟩ deliverance. At that time there was no report of ⟨their⟩ coming, for they came not for ten weeks thereafter. In the morning after they landed, he lectured ⟨before⟩ they parted, sitting upon a brae side, where he had ⟨fearful⟩ threatnings against Scotland, saying The time was coming, that they might travel many miles in Galloway and Nith dale, Air, and Clyd dale, and not ⟨see⟩ a reeking house, nor hear a cock crow: and further said, That his soul trembled to think what would become ⟨of⟩ the indulged, backslidden and upsitten ministers of Scotland; as the Lord lives, none of them shall ever be honourd to put a right pin in the Lord's tabernacle, nor assert Christ's kingly prerogative, as head and king of his church To the same purpose said the never to be forgotten Mr. Donald Cargil, within eight hours of his martyrdom, that he feared, tho there were not another ministry in all the earth, he would make no more use of them in a national reformation; but send dreadful judgments upon themselves, and a long curse upon their posterity. And Rutherford said, in his day, 1656, That sad and heavy were the judgments and indignation from the Lord, that was abiding the unfaithful watchmen of Scotland; meaning the unhappy resolutioners. When ended, he prayed earnestly for many things; particularly, that all their Ireland-sins might be buried in that place, a d might not spread with them through the sinful land.upon them, which obliged them that were to come off, to secure the
24. When the greater part took their farewel of him, he said to the rest, to what house or place shall we go? One Hugh Kennedy said, We will go to such a house. He said, Hewie, we will not get our nose in there; for the De'il and his bairns are there. Notwithstanding Hugh went, and found the house full of the enemies; and that night a woman in that house made away with herself. Hugh came quickly back, and told him He said, We'll go to such a house, I have an errand there. When they went, the good wife was dying, under great doubts and fears; where he was a blessed instrument of comfort to her; and said to Hugh, Hewie, this is the errand I had here.
25. They went eastward somewhat contrair to his inclination; they came to the top of an hill, upwards of two miles distant from the place they designed, he halted and said, I will not go one foot further this way; there is undoubtedly danger before us. An herd lad being there, he gave him a groat, and desired him to go to that house, and fetch them meat and news: when the lad came to the house, the good-wife hasted & gave him meat to them, saying, Lad, run hard, and tell them that the enemies are spread, and we are looking for them here every minute. As the lad was going from the house, eighteen of the enemies foot were near, crying, Stand, dog. The lad ran, and, six of them pursued half a mile, and fired hard upon him; the ball went close by his head. At that time Mr. Peden continued in prayer for him alone, and with the rest, being twelve men; when praying with them, he said Lord, shall the poor lad that's gone our errand, seeking bread to support our lives, lose his? Direct the bullets by his head, however near, let them not touch him; good Lord, spare the lap of thy cloak, and cover the poor lad. And in this he was heard and answered, in that there was a dark cloud of mist parted him and them.
26. About this time there was an honest poor wife brought him and them some bread & milk; when seeking a blessing, he said, As the Gyse of the times, now in this bloody land, this poor woman has endangered her life, in bringing bread to support ours; we cannot pay her for it, but, Lord, it is for thy sake she has brought it; there's no need that she should be a loser at thy hand; thou givest plenty of bread to many that are not so worthy of it; giving does not impoverish thee, & witholding does not enrich thee; give this poor wife twenty bonnacks for these few. And the wife said several times afterwards, she got many bonnacks; for after that, she was never straitned for bread as before.
27. About this time, upon a sabbath night, he preached in a shield or sheep-house, in a desert place; a man standing at the door as he came in, he gripped him & said, Where are you going, sir, go home, you have neither art nor part with us; there will be a black account heard of you e'er long. Accordingly, very shortly thereafter, he went to Edinburgh, and took the black rest. That night he lectured upon the 7th chapter of Amos And I will set a plumb line in the midst of my people, the house of Israel. He cried out. Oh how few of the ministers of Scotland will answer this plumb-line? Lord send us a Welwood, a Cargil and a Cameron, & such as they, and make us quite of the rest. And I will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword. He said, I will tell you good news, our Lord will take a feather out of the Antichrist's wing, which shall bring down the duke of York, and banish him out of these kingdoms, & will ⟨Glory⟩, glory to the Lord, that has accepted a bloody sacrifice, of a sealed testimony off Scotland's hand; we have a bloody clout to hold up, and the lads that got the bullets thro their heads the last day at Glentrol, their blood has made the clout the redder: when our Lord looks upon the bloody clout, he will keep the sword of his avenging justice in the sheath for a time: but if Scotland shall not consider the merciful day of their visitation, nor his long-suffering, patience and forbearance lead them to repentance, as we fear it will not, but harden them in their sin, & the greater part turn gospel-proof, and judgment-proof & wax worse and worse; then will the Lord accomplish all that he has threatned, well-deserved, foreseen, and foretold day of vengeance; when he begins, he will also make an end, especially against the house of Eli, for the iniquity which they cannot but know. When ended, he, and those that were with him, lay down in the sheep-house, and got some sleep; he rose early, and went up the burn-side, and stayed long; when he came into them, he did sing the 32d psalm, from the 7th verse to the end; when ending he repeated the 7th verse,the bloody sword from above the heads of his people; and there will never a man of the name of Stewart sit upon the throne of Britain after the duke of York, whose reign is now short for their lechery, treachery, tyranny, and shedding the precious blood of the Lord's people: but oh, black, black, black, will the day be that will come upon Ireland, that they shall travel forty miles & not see a reeking house, or hear a cock crow. At this he started up to his feet and clapt his hands, and with a ravishing voice cried aloud,
Thou art my biding place; thou shalt
from trouble keep me free.
Thou with songs of deliverance
about shalt compass me.
Saying, these, and the following are sweet lines, which I got at the burn-side this morning, and we'll get more to-morrow & so we'll get daily provision; he was never behind with any that put their trust in him, and he will not be in our common, nor none who needily depends on him; and so we will go on in his strength, making mention of his righteousness, and of his only. The foresaid James Cubison went 8 miles with him; when he took good night, he said, sir, I think I'll never see you again; he said, James, ye and I will never meet again in time. And two several times he went to Ireland before, when they parted, he told them that they would meet again. The said James, John Muirhead, & others of our sufferers, who were present, gave me these accounts.
28. Shortly after they landed from Ireland in Galloway, the enemy got notice, they being then in garrisons, foot and horse, & it being killing time, the alarm came to them in a morning, that foot and horse were coming upon them; the foresaid John Muirhead bring struck with a violent pain in his forehead, they started up to run for it; he said, Stay, stay, lads, let us pray for old John e'er we go; he stood up and said, Lord, we hear tell that thy enemies and ours are coming upon us, & thou hast laid thy hand of affliction upon old John; have pity upon him, for thy enemies will have none, his blood will run where he lies; spare him at this time, we know not if he be ready to die. And, as John told me with the tear in his eye, the pain of his head, and the indisposition of his body quite left him, and he started up & ran with the rest. The enemies seeing them, pursued them hard, sometimes the horse, and sometimes the foot being near them; mossy boggish ground did cast about the horses. After they had run some considerable way, they got some little height between the enemy & them; he stood still and said, Let us pray here; for if the Lord hear not our prayers, and save us, we are dead men, & our blood will run like water; if we die, let the enemy kill us, and let our blood fill up their cup, that the day of vengeance that is coming upon them may be hastned. Then he began and said, Lord, it is thy enemies day, hour and power; they may not be idle, but hast thou no other work for them, but to send them after us? Send them after them to whom thou wilt give strength to flee, for our strength is gone; twine them about the hill, Lord, and cast the lap of thy cloak over old Sandy, and thir poor things, and save us this one time, and we'll keep it in remembrance, and tell it to the commendation of thy goodness, pity, and compassion; what thou didst for us at such a time. In the mean time there was a dark cloud of mist came betwixt them. After prayer, he ordered two of them to give notice of the enemies motion, and the rest to go their alone, and to cry mightily to the Lord for deliverance. In the mean time that they were thus exercised, there came posts to the enemy, for them to go and pursue Mr. Renwick, and a great company with him. After the enemies were gone, he called them together, and said, Let us not forget to return thanks to the Lord, for hearing and answering us in the day of our distress; and charged the whole creation to praise the Lord,and idjured the clouds to praise him. Then he sat down at the side of a well, and enquired if they had any crumbs of bread; some of them had some few crumbs; when seeking a blessing, he said, Lord thou who blessed the few loaves & fishes, and made them sufficient for many, bless this water & these crumbs to us; for we thought we should never have needed any more of these creature comforts.
29. A few days after this, the foresaid John Muirhead was in a house alone, at a distance from the rest, & the morning was a dark mist, and he knew not whether to go, or where to find them; only he heard him speak of the name of a place where he was to baptize some children. He gave a sixpence to a lad to conduct him to ⟨that⟩ place, which was miles distant; when he came he was praying. After baptism he came to John, and ⟨said⟩, poor straying sheep! how came you to stray from the rest? I had a troubled morning for you; do not this ⟨again⟩, otherwise it will fare the worse with you.
30. About this time he and John Clark, who ordinarily was called little John, were in a cave in Galloway; ⟨they⟩ wanted meat and drink long, he said, John, better ⟨be⟩ thrust through with the sword, than pine away with ⟨hunger⟩: the earth and the fulness thereof belongs to my Master, and I have a right to as much of it as will ⟨keep⟩ me from fainting under his service; go to such a ⟨house⟩, and tell them plainly, that I have wanted meat ⟨so⟩ long, and they will willingly give it. John said, sir, I ⟨am⟩ not willing to leave you in this place your alone, ⟨for⟩ some have been frighted by the devil in this cave: No, no, John, said he, you need not fear that, I will ⟨take⟩ my venture of him for a time. John went, & the ⟨people⟩ willingly gave him some meat: When he came ⟨back⟩, he said, John, it is very hard living in this world, ⟨incarnate⟩ devils above the earth, and devils beneath the ⟨earth⟩; the devil has been here since you went away: ⟨I⟩ have sent him off in haste, we'll be no more troubled ⟨with⟩ him this night.
31. A little after this, he being yet in Gallaway, ⟨John⟩ Muirhead, and some others being with him, John ⟨said⟩ to him, This is a very melancholy weary time, it ⟨being⟩ killing time: He replied, there are more dark ⟨weary⟩ days to come, when your pulpits will be full of ⟨presbyterian⟩ ministers, and it will turn that dark upon ⟨you⟩, that many shall not know what to do, whether to ⟨hear⟩ or forbear; and they shall then be reckoned happy ⟨that⟩ wan well thro at Pentland, Bothwel, & Airdsmoss, ⟨and⟩ wan fairly off the stage, and got martyrdom for ⟨Christ⟩; for the ministers will cut off many of the most ⟨serious⟩ and zealous godly at the web's end; but I will ⟨be⟩ hid in a grave. They enquired, What will become ⟨of⟩ the testimony of the church of Scotland; Then he plucked the bonnet off his head, and threw it from him, ⟨saying⟩, See ye how my bonnet lies? The sworn to, & ⟨sealed⟩ testimony of the church of Scotland, will fall from ⟨among⟩ the hands of all parties, and will ly as close upon the ground as ye see my bonnet ly. How lamentably is this accomplished to the observation of all who see with half an eye!
32. At this time it was seldom that Mr. Peden could be ⟨get⟩ preaching both and good, but not meikle ⟨good⟩ of it, until judgments poured out to lay the land desolate. And at other times, We needed not look for ⟨a⟩ great or good day of the gospel, until the sword of ⟨the⟩ Frenches were amongst us to make a dreadful slaughter; and after that, bra good days. He and Mr. Donald Cargil saw as it had been with one eye, and ⟨spake⟩ with one breath; and frequently, when they prest ⟨him⟩ to preach, he had the same expressions in his answers.with to preach, frequently answering and advising people to pray meikle, saying, It was praying folk that would win thro the storm: they would
33. Three lads murdered it Wigtoun; at the same time he was praying at Craigmyne, many miles distant, he cried out. There's a bloody sacrifice put up this ⟨day⟩ at Wigtoun. These were the lads of Kirkelly, and ⟨they⟩ who lived near, knew not of it till it was past. I ⟨have⟩ this account from William M'Dougal. an old man ⟨of⟩ Ferrytoun, near Wigtoun, worthy of credit, who ⟨was⟩ present.
34. After this, in Auchengrooch muirs, in Nithsdale, captain John Mathison and others being with him, ⟨they⟩ were alarmed that the enemies were coming fast ⟨upon⟩ them, they designed to put him in some hole and ⟨cover⟩ him with heather, he not being able to run hard ⟨by⟩ reason of his age; he desired them to forbear a little ⟨until⟩ he prayed, where he said. Lord, we are ever ⟨needing⟩ at thy hand; and if we had not thy command to ⟨call⟩ thee in the day of our trouble, and thy promise of ⟨answering⟩ us in the day of our distress, we wot not ⟨what⟩ would become of us; if thou hast any more work ⟨for us⟩ in this world, allow us the lap of thy cloak the ⟨day again⟩; and if this be the day of our going off the ⟨stage⟩, let us win honestly off, and comfortably thro, and ⟨our⟩ souls will sing forth thy praises to eternity, for ⟨all⟩ thou hast done to us, and for usWhen ended, ⟨he ran⟩ his alone a little, and came quickly back, saying, ⟨Lads,⟩ the bitterness of this blast is over; we'll be no ⟨more⟩ troubled with them to day. Foot and horse came ⟨the⟩ length of Andrew Clark's in Auchengrooch, where ⟨they⟩ were covered with a dark mist; when they saw it, ⟨they roared⟩ like fleshly devils, and cried out, There's the ⟨confounded⟩ mist again, we cannot get these damn'd whigs ⟨pursued⟩ for't. I had this account from the said captain ⟨John⟩ Matthison.
35. About this time he was in a house in the shire of ⟨Air⟩, where James Nisbet, yet living in the castle of Edinburgh, can bear witness to the truth of this; at night ⟨he⟩ was standing before the fire, where he uttered some ⟨imprecations⟩ upon the cursed inteligenters, who had ⟨told⟩ the enemy that he was come out of Ireland. When ⟨James⟩ took him to the place where he was to rest a little, ⟨James⟩ said, The servants took notice of your imprecations, upon the inteligenters. He said, ye will know ⟨to-morrow⟩ about 9 o'clock, what ground I have for it; ⟨I⟩ wish thy head may be preserved; for it will be in danger for me; I'll take my own time and be gone from ⟨this⟩ house. Sometime in that night he went to a desert ⟨place⟩, and darned himself in a moss-bag. The next ⟨morning⟩ James was going at the harrows, and about 8 ⟨of⟩ the clock, there was a troop of the enemies surrounding the house; when James saw them he ran for't; they ⟨pursued⟩ him hard, till he wan to a moss, where they ⟨could⟩ pursue him no further with horses; they fired ⟨upon⟩ him, and he having knots upon his hair on each ⟨side⟩ of his head, one of their bullets took away one of ⟨the⟩ knots. He ran where Mr Peden was, who said, ⟨Oh,⟩ Jamie, Jamie, I am glad your head is safe, for I ⟨knew⟩ it would be in danger. He took his knife & cut ⟨away⟩v the other knot.
36. About this same time be and James Wilson in Douglass, a singular known man to many, was at Airdsmoss; and being together sometime without speaking, ⟨as⟩ Mr. Peden's ordinar was, when there was an extraordinar thing in his head, they came to Mr. Cameron's ⟨grave⟩, where he and other 8 were buried. After sometime sitting on the grave, he gave James a clap on the ⟨shoulder⟩ with his heavy hand, and said, I am going to ⟨tell⟩ you a strange tale; James said, I am willing to hear't: he ⟨said⟩, This is a strange day, both of sinning and suffering, (as indeed it was, it being killing time, wherein ⟨many⟩ fainted and could not endure the scorching heat ⟨of⟩ the persecution; and to some the Lord in his love ⟨gave⟩ gourds of strength, support and comfort, that ⟨keeped⟩ them from fainting) but, said he, tho it be a ⟨dreadful⟩ day it will not last long; this persecution will ⟨be⟩ stopt within a few years, but I will not see it; & ye're ⟨all⟩ longing & praying for that day; but when it comes, ⟨ye⟩ will not crack so much of it as ye trow. And ye're a ⟨vain⟩ man, James, and many others, with your bits of papers and drops of bJood. (meaning our martyrs testimonies and blood) and who but you, and your bits ⟨of⟩ papers and drops of blood! but when that day comes there will a bike of indulged, lukewarm, ⟨ministers⟩ come out of Holland, England and Ireland, together with a bike of them at home, and some young ⟨things⟩ that know nothing, and they will all hyve together in ⟨a⟩ general assembly; and the red hands with blood, ⟨and⟩ the black hands of defection, will be taken by the hand and the hand given them by our ministers; and ye ⟨will⟩ not ken who has been the persecutor, complyer, or sufferer; and your bits of paper and drops of blood ⟨will⟩ be shut to the door, and never a word more of them, ⟨and⟩ ye and the like of you will get their back-side. He ⟨gave⟩ him another sore clap upon the shoulder, saying, ⟨Keep⟩ mind of this, James Wilson, for as the Lord lives, ⟨it⟩ will surely come to pass. James Wilson told me ⟨this⟩ shortly thereafter, and renewed it again the first general assembly, when he and I, and many others, saw ⟨the⟩ accomplishment of this in every particular to our ⟨great⟩ grief.
37. In the beginning of May 1685, he came to ⟨the⟩ house of John Brown and Marion Weir, whom he married before he went to Ireland, where he stayed ⟨all⟩ night; and in the morning, when he took farewell he came out at the door, saying to himself, Poor woman, a fearful morning, twice over. A dark ⟨misty⟩ morning. The next morning, between five and ⟨six⟩ hours, the said John Brown, having performed the worship of God in his family, was going with a spade in ⟨his⟩ hand to make ready some peat groud; the mist being very dark, he knew not until cruel & bloody Claverhouse compassed him with three troops of horses, ⟨brought⟩ him to his house, end there examined him; who tho was a man of stammering speech, yet answered him distinctly and solidly; which made Claverhouse to examine these whom he had taken to be his guides thro ⟨the⟩ muirs, if ever they heard him preach? They answered, No, no, he was never a preacher. He said, If he has never preached, meikle has he prayed in his time: he said to John, Go to your prayers, for you shall immediately die. When he was praying Claverhouse interrupted him three times; one time that he stopt him, ⟨he⟩ was pleading that the Lord would spare a remnant, ⟨and⟩ not make a full end in the day of his anger. Claverhouse said, I give you time to pray, and ye're begun ⟨to⟩ ⟨preach⟩: He turned about upon his knees, and said, Sir, ⟨you⟩ know neither the nature of preaching nor praying, ⟨that⟩ calls this preaching; then continued without confusion. When ended, Claverhouse said, take goodnight ⟨of⟩ your wife and children r His wife standing by with ⟨her⟩ child in her arms that she had brought forth to him, ⟨and⟩ another child of his first wife's, he came to her, ⟨and⟩ said, Now, Marion, the day is come, that I ⟨told⟩ you would come, when I spake first to you of ⟨marrying⟩ me. She said, Indeed, John, I can willingly ⟨part⟩ with you. Then he said that's all I desire, I have ⟨no⟩ more to do but die. He kissed his wife and bairns, ⟨and⟩ wished purchased and promised blessings to be multiplied upon them, and his blessing. Clavers ordered 6 soldiers to shoot him; the most part of the bullets came upon his head, which scattered his brains upon ⟨the⟩ ground. Claverhouse said to his wife, What thinkst thou of thy husband now, woman? She said, I thought ⟨ever⟩ much of him, and now as much as ever. He said, ⟨It⟩ were but justice to lay thee beside him. She said, If ⟨ye⟩ were permitted I doubt not but your cruelty would ⟨go⟩ that length, but how will ye make answer for this ⟨morning's⟩ work? He said, to man I can be answerable; ⟨and⟩ for God, I will take him in my own hand. Claverhouse mounted his horse, and marched, and left her with ⟨the⟩ corps of her dead husband lying there; she set the ⟨bairn⟩ upon the ground, and gathered his brains, and tied up his head, and straighted his body, and covered ⟨him⟩ in her plaid, and sat down and wept over him. ⟨It⟩ being a very desart place, where never victual grew, ⟨and⟩ far from neighbours, it was sometime before any ⟨friends⟩ came to her; the first that came was a very fit ⟨hand⟩, that old singular Christian woman, in the Cummerhead, named Elizabeth Menzies, three miles distant, ⟨who⟩ had been tried with the violent death of her husband at Pentland, afterwards of two worthy sons, ⟨Thomas⟩ Weir who was killed at Drumclog, and David ⟨Steel⟩, who was suddenly shot afterwards, when taken. ⟨The⟩ said Marion Weir, sitting upon her husbands ⟨gravestone⟩, told me, That before that, she could see no blood but she was in danger to faint, and yet was helped to be ⟨a⟩ witness to all this, without either fainting or confusion, except when the shots were let off, her eyes ⟨dazzled⟩. His corps were buried at the end of his house, ⟨where⟩ he was slain, with this inscription on his gravestone.
In earth's cold bed the dusty part here lies,
Of one who did the earth as dull dispise.
Here in this place from earth he took departure,
Now he has got the garland of the martyr.
This murder was committed betwixt 6 and 7 in the morning: Mr. Peden was about 10 or 11 miles distant, having been in the fields ail night; he came to the ⟨house⟩ betwixt 7 and 8, and desired to call in the family, that he might pray amongst them; when praying, he said, Lord, when wilt thou avenge Brown's blood? Oh, let Brown's blood be precious in thy sight! and hasten the day when thou wilt avenge it, with Cameron's, Cargil's, and many others of our martyrs names; and O for that day when the Lord would avenge all their bloods! When ended, John Muirhead enquired what he meant by Brown's blood? He said twice over, What do ⟨you⟩ mean! Claverhouse has been at the Preshil this morning, and has cruelly murdered John Brown; his ⟨corps⟩ are lying at the end of his house, and his poor wife sitting weeping by his corps, and not a soul to speak comfortably to her. This morning the sun-rising, he saw a strange apparition in the firmament, the appearance of a very bright clear-shining star, fall from heaven to the earth; and indeed there is a clear-shining light fallen this day, the greatest Christian that ever ⟨I⟩ conversed with.
38. After this, two days before Argyll was broken & taken, he was near Wigtoun in Galloway; a considerable number of men were gathered together in arms to go for his assistance; they pressed him to preach; but he positively refused, saying, he would only pray with them; where he continued long, and spent some part of that time in praying for Ireland, pleading, that the Lord would spare a remnant, and not make a full end in the day of his anger; and would put it in the heart of his own, to flee over to this bloody land, where they would find safety tor a time. After prayer, they got some meat, and he gave every one of his old parishioners, who were there, a piece out of his own hand, calling them his bairns: then he advised all to go no further; but, said he, for you that are my bairns, I discharge you to go your foot-length, for before you can travel that length, he will be broke; and tho' it were not so, God will honour neither him nor Monmouth, to be instruments of a goood turn to his church, they have dipt their hands so far in the persecution. And that same day that Argyll was taken, Mr. George Barclay was preaching and persuading men in that country to go to Argyll's assistance. After sermon, he said to Mr. George, Now, Argyll is in the enemies hands and gone; tho he was many miles distant. I had this account from some of these his bairns, who were present; and the last from Mr. George Barclay's self.
39. After this, he was to preach at night at Pengaroch in Carrick; the mistress of the house was too open minded to a woman, who went and told the enemy, and ⟨came⟩ back to the house that she might not be suspected; Mr, Peden being in the fields, came in haste to the ⟨door⟩, and called the mistress, and said, Ye've played a ⟨bonny⟩ sport to yourself, by being so loose tongued; ⟨the⟩ enemy is informed that I was to drop a word this ⟨night⟩ in this house, and the person who has done it, is ⟨in⟩ the house just now, you'll repent it; to morrow morning the enemy will be here: Farewel, I'll stay no ⟨longer⟩ in this place. To morrow morning, both foot ⟨and⟩ horse were about the house.
40. In the same year, within the bounds of Carrick, ⟨John⟩ Clark in Muirbrock, being with him, said, Sir, ⟨what⟩ think ye of this present time? Is it not a dark melancholy day? And can there be a more ⟨discouraging⟩ time than this? He said Yes John, this is indeed a dark ⟨discouraging⟩ time; but there will be a darker time than ⟨this⟩; These silly, graceless, wretched creatures the ⟨curates⟩, shall go down, and after them shall arise a ⟨party⟩ called Presbyterians, but having little more than the ⟨name⟩; and these shall as really as Christ was crucified ⟨without⟩ the gates of Jerusalem on mount Calvary, ⟨bodily⟩; I say, they shall as really crucify Christ in his ⟨cause⟩ and interest in Scotland, and shall lay him in his ⟨grave⟩, and his friends shall give him his winding-sheet, ⟨and⟩ he shall ly as one buried for a considerable time. O ⟨then⟩, John, there will be darkness, and dark days, such ⟨as⟩ the poor church of Scotland never saw the like of ⟨them⟩, nor shall see, if once they were over; yea, John, ⟨they⟩ shall be so dark, that it a poor thing would go ⟨between⟩ the east sea-bank and the west sea-bank, seeking ⟨a minister⟩ to whom they would communicate their case, ⟨or tell⟩ them the mind of the Lord concerning the times, ⟨he should⟩ not find one. John asked, Where the testimony ⟨should be then⟩? He answered, In the hands of a few, ⟨who will be⟩ despised and undervalued by all, but especially by these ministers who buried Christ; but after ⟨that he shall get up upon them⟩; and at the crack of his ⟨winding-sheet⟩, as many of them as are alive, who were at his burial, shall be distracted and mad for fear, not knowing what to do: then, John, there shall be brave days, such as the church of Scotland never saw the like of but I shall not see them, but you may.
41. In the same year 1685, preaching in the night time in a barn at Carrick, upon that text, Psal. lxviii 1,2 'Let God arise, and let his enemies be scattered: let them that hate him flee before him. As smoke is driven, so drive thou them.' So insisting, how the enemies and haters of God and godliness, were tossed and driven ⟨as⟩ smoke or chaff by the wind of God's vengeance, ⟨while⟩ on earth; and that wind would blow them all to hell in the end. Stooping down, there being chaff among ⟨his⟩ feet he took a handful of it, and said, The duke of York, the duke of York, and now king of Britain, a known enemy of God and godliness, it was by the vengeance ⟨of⟩ God that he ever got that name; but as ye see me ⟨throw⟩ away that chaff; so the wind of that vengeance shall blow and drive him off that throne; and he, nor no other of that name, shall ever come on it again.
42. About this time, preaching in Carrick, in the parish of Girvan in the day time in the fields, David Mason, then a professor, came in haste, trampling upon the people to be near him; he said, There comes the devil's rattle bag, we do not want him here. After this, the said David became officer in that bounds, and an informer, running thro rattling his bag, & summoning the people to their unhappy courts for their non-conformity; for that, he and his got that name of the devil's rattle bag, and to this day do. Since the revolution, he complained to his minister, that he and his got that name: The minister said, Ye well deserved it and he was an honest man that gave you it; you & yours must enjoy it, there’s no help for it.
43. A little before his death, he was in Auchincloich, where he was born, in the house of John Richman, ⟨there⟩ being two beds in one room, one for him and one Andrew----, who dwelt in and about the New-milns; where Andrew offered to go to his bed, he heard him very importunate with the Lord to have pity upon the west of Scotland, and spare a remnant, and not make a full end in the day of his anger; and when he was off his knees, walking up and down the chamber, crying out, Oh, the Monzies, the French Monzies, see how they run, how long will they run? Lord, cut their houghs, and stay them running. Thus he continued all night; sometimes on his knees, and sometimes walking, in the morning, they enquired what he meant by the Monzies? He said, O sirs, ye'll have a dreadful day by the ⟨French⟩ Monzies, and a set of wicked men in these lands who will take part with them; the west of Scotland will ⟨pay⟩ dear for it; they will run thicker in the water of Air ⟨and⟩ Clyde than ever the Highland men did. I lay in ⟨that⟩ chamber about three years ago, and the said John ⟨Richman⟩ and his wife told me, that these were his words. ⟨At⟩ other times, to the same purpose, saying, O the Monzies, the Monzies, will be thro the breadth and ⟨length⟩ of the south and west of Scotland! O I think I see them at our fire-sides, slaying man, wife and children: the remnant will get a breathing: but they will ⟨be⟩ driven to the wilderness again, and their sharpest ⟨showers⟩ will be last.
To the same purpose spoke the two following ministers. viz. Mr. Thomas Lundie, a godly minister in ⟨the⟩ north of Rotray; his sister a lady in that country, who died in the year 1683, gave the following account, That said Mr. Lundie, after some sickness, & seeming recovery again, which comforted them; but one morning, staying longer than ordinary in his chamber, ⟨the⟩ foresaid lady knocking at his chamber door, who opening it, found him more than ordinary weighted; she ⟨asked⟩ him the reason, seeing he was now better: whereupon, smiling, he said, Within a few hours I will be taken from you; but, alas! for the day that I see coming ⟨upon⟩ Scotland: the Lord has letten me see the Frenchies marching with their armies thro the breadth and ⟨length⟩ of the land, marching to their bridle reins in the blood of all ranks, and that for a Broken, burnt & ⟨buried⟩ covenant; but neither ye nor I will live to see ⟨it⟩. As also one Mr. Douglass, a godly minister in Galloway, a little before his death, seeming as slumbering ⟨in⟩ his bed, his wife and other friends standing by, when he awak'd, he seemed more than ordinary weighted, and groaned heavily, saying, sad days for Scotland. His wife asked him, What will be the instruments? He said, the swords of foreign enemies, they will be heavy and sharp, but not long; but they will ⟨not⟩ be yet, but not long to them: but, O glorious ⟨days⟩ on the back of them, to poor wasted Scotland!
MY Master is the rider, and I am the horse; I never love to ride, but when I find the spurs; I know not ⟨what⟩ I have to do amongst you this night; I wish it may be for your good, for it will be the last: it is long since ⟨it⟩ was our desire to God, to have you taken off our ⟨hands⟩ and now he's granting us our desire. There are ⟨four⟩ or five things I have to tell you this night, and the ⟨first⟩ is this, A bloody sword, a bloody sword, a bloody sword for thee, O Scotland, that shall tear the hearts ⟨of⟩ many, 2dly, Many miles shall you travel, and shall see nothing but desolation and ruinous wastes in thee, O Scotland, 3dly, The fertilest places in Scotland ⟨shall⟩ be as waste and desolate as the mountains. 4thly, The women with child shall be ript up and dashed to pieces. 5thly, Many a conventicle has God had in thee, O Scotland; but e'er long God will have a conventicle ⟨that⟩ will make Scotland tremble; many a preaching ⟨has⟩ God wared upon thee; but e'er long God's judgments shall be as frequent as these precious meetings were wherein he sent forth his faithful servants to give faithful warning of the hazard of thy apostasy from God in breaking, burning and burying his covenant, persecuting, slighting and contemning the gospel, shedding the precious blood of his saints and servants; God sent forth a Welwood, a Kid and a King, a Cameron and a Cargil, and others to preach to thee; but e'er long God shall preach to thee by fire and a bloody sword; God will let none of these mens words fall to the ground, that he sent forth with a commission to preach these things in his name: he will not let one sentence fall to the ground, but they shall have a sure accoplishment, to the sad experience of many. In ⟨his⟩ prayer after sermon, he said, Lord, thou hast been both good and kind to old Sandy, ⟨thro⟩ a long tract of time and given him many years in thy service, which has been but as so many months, but now he's tyr'd of the world, and hath done the good in it that he will do, let him win away with the honesty he has, for he will gather no more.
45. When the day of his death drew near, and not being able to travel, he came to his brother's house in the parish of Sorn, where he was ⟨born; he caused dig a cave, with a saughen-bush covering the mouth of it.⟩ ⟨near⟩ to his brother's house: the enemies got notice, & ⟨searched⟩ the house narrowly many times. In the time ⟨that⟩ he was in this cave, he said to some friends, 1st, ⟨That⟩ God shall make Scotland a desolation. 2dly, ⟨There⟩ should be a remnant in the land whom God ⟨should⟩ spare and hide, 3dly, They should ly in holes ⟨and⟩ caves of the earth, and be supplied with meat and ⟨drink⟩; and when they come out of their holes, they ⟨shall⟩ not have freedom to walk, for stumbling on dead ⟨corps⟩. 4thly, A stone cut out of the mountain should ⟨come⟩ down, and God shall be avenged on the great ⟨ones⟩ of the earth, and the inhabitants of the land, for ⟨their⟩ wickedness; and then the church should come ⟨with⟩ with a bonny-bairn time at her back of ⟨ones⟩. He wished that the Lord's people might ly hid ⟨in⟩ their caves, as if they were not in the world, for nothing would do it, until God appeared with his judgments, and they that wan thro the bitter and short ⟨sharp⟩ storm, by the sword of the Frenches, and a set of ⟨unhappy⟩ men taking part with them, then there would ⟨be⟩ a spring-tide day of the plenty, purity and power ⟨of⟩ the gospel; giving them that for a sign. If he were ⟨but⟩ once buried, then they might be in doubts; but ⟨if⟩ he were oftner buried than once, they might be persuaded that all he had said would come to pass; and ⟨earnestly⟩ desired them to take his corps out to Airdsmoss, and bury him beside Richy, meaning Mr. ⟨Cameron⟩, that he might get rest in his grave, for he had ⟨gotten⟩ little thro his life: but I know ye will not do ⟨this⟩. He told them, that bury him where they would, ⟨he⟩ would be lifted again; but the man that put first to ⟨his⟩ hand to lift his corps, four things should befal him; ⟨1st,⟩ He should get a great fall from a house. 2dly, He ⟨should⟩ fall in adultery. 3. In theft, and for these he ⟨should⟩ leave the land. 4. Make a melancholy end ⟨abroad⟩ for murder; which accordingly came to pass. ⟨There⟩ was one Murdoch a mason to his trade, but then ⟨in⟩ the military service, who first put his hand to his ⟨corps⟩. A little before his death, he said, ye will be ⟨angry⟩ where I shall be buried at last; but I discharge ⟨you⟩ all to lift my corps again. At last, one morning ⟨early⟩ he came to the door, and left his cave; his ⟨brother's⟩ wife said, Where are you going? the enemy will ⟨be⟩ hereHe said, I know that, Alas! sir, said she, ⟨what⟩ will become of you? You must back to the cave ⟨again⟩: He said I have done with that, for it is ⟨discover'd⟩; but there is no matter, for within 48 hours I'll be beyond the reach of all the devil's temptations, and his instruments in hell and on earth, and they ⟨shall⟩ trouble me no more. About three hours after he entered the house, the enemy came and found him not in the cave, searched the barn narrowly, casting the unthreshen corn, and searched the house, stobbing the beds, but entered not into the place where he lay. He told them, that bury him where they would, he would be lifted again, and within 48 hours he died. He died in January 28, 1686, being past 60 years, and was buried in the lairs of Afflect's isle. The enemies got notice of his death and burial, sent a troop of dragoons, and lifted his corps, and carried him to Cumnock gallows-foot, and buried him there, after 40 days being in the grave, beside other martyrs His friends laid a grave-stone above him, with this inscription
After this, that troop of dragoons came to quarter in the parish of Cambusnethen; two of them were quartered in the house of James Gray, my acquaintance, they being frighted in their sleep, started up, and clapped their hands, crying, Peden, Peden. These two dragoons affirmed, That out of their curiosity they opened his coffin to see his corps, and yet they had no smell, tho he had been forty days dead:
All the tyranny and cruelty of these times, by these enemies of God and godliness, that were exercised upon the bodies and consciences of the Lord's people, was said, That it was all for rebellion; there was no ground to think or fear that the corps of that servant of Christ, after six weeks lying in the grave, would rise in rebellion against them. This is somewhat like that which historians give an account of, That the popish party made search for the bones of John Wicklieff their opposer in his life, by his writings, 42 years after his death they found his bones, but were uncertain whether they were his or not, and took them up to the head of an hill, and burnt them, and gathered up the ashes in a pock, and threw them down a river. Mr Samuel Clark, gives another instance of a Christian Jew in Italy, who after the popish party had murthered him, ⟨laid⟩ his corps in the open street of the city, prohibiting all to bury him, where he lay nine days, and instead of stink, they had a sweet charming smell, which ⟨induced⟩ many people to stand and wonder; which when ⟨the⟩ enemies found the sweet smell themselves, they ⟨caused⟩ take them up and bury them.
All these foregoing instances I am surely informed ⟨of⟩, for matter and substance, except the 40th passage, which is said, he spoke to John Clark in Muirbrock, within the bounds of Carrick, in the year 1685, and has ⟨been⟩ passing from hand to hand in writ; I sent a friend ⟨20⟩ miles to him for the certainty of it; & altho he was ⟨my⟩ old acquaintance, he delayed to give it; but promised to visit Mr. Murray in Penpont, in September 1723, and give him a full account, but has not performed his promise. Captain John Campbell of Walwood, ⟨his⟩ master, promised to get a true account from himself, and send it to me; but has not done it. I am ⟨informed⟩, that some other friends enquired at the said ⟨John⟩, who owned, that the 40th passage was all one for ⟨matter⟩ and substance with what Mr. Peden said to him.
There are other two passages, that for many years we often heard from friends, and doubt nothing of ⟨the⟩ truth of them in my own mind, tho it be not ⟨pointed⟩ in time and place.
First, One day preaching in the fields, in his ⟨prayer⟩, he prayed earnestly for the preservation of the people, and again and again prayed for that man that was ⟨to⟩ lose his life: The enemies came upon them the same ⟨day⟩ and fired upon the people, and there was none of ⟨them⟩ either wounded of killed, save one man, and he ⟨was⟩ shot dead.
A 2d passage. One time he was preaching, and giving ⟨a⟩ very large offer of Christ in the gospel-terms: and an ⟨old⟩ woman sitting before him, he laid his hand on every side of her head, and rocked her from side to side and ⟨said⟩, Thou witch-wife, thou witch-wife, thou witch-⟨wife⟩, I offer Christ to thee; quit the Devil's service, ⟨thou⟩ hast a bad master; thou wilt never make thy plack ⟨a⟩ babee of him; and if thou wilt break off, and ⟨renounce⟩ the Devil's service, I promise thee, in my ⟨Master's⟩ name, that he will give thee salvation. After this ⟨there⟩ was a discernable change in her practice; and ⟨when⟩ she was a dying, she confessed, that she was ⟨either⟩ engaged in the devil s service, or was engaging; ⟨and⟩ expressed her thankfulness, that she had the happiness to hear Mr. Peden at that time.
As for the paper that has been passing from hand to hand in print, these several years in Mr. Peden's name which is said to be found in Ireland, and supposed to ⟨be⟩ his I made all search, both in Scotland and Ireland, but could never find one that had been conversant ⟨with⟩ him, that ever heard him have many of the expressions that are in that paper.