Quaker Heritage Press > Online Texts > Works of James Nayler > O England, Thy Time is Come
"Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven" (Acts 1:11)
The glorious reign of Christ is come;
Ho! every one behold the Son.
This is the beautiful Morning-Star,
Who sends his messengers through the air,
And calls up all to judgment; O haste and come away
You virgins that are ready! this is the marriage-day.
You foolish virgins, how have you been sleeping away your precious time? had it not been better you had watched and prayed? O foolish, foolish children, will you sell your birthright for a moment's pleasure, and a little ease? But what more can be said to you? I see the Spirit is grieved with you, and the Spirit is weary with striving with you. Oh that I could weep tears of blood for the slackness of the desires of the people concerning their eternal salvation! Is your souls of no more value than to make a sport of time? O England! thou hast not wanted for warnings; my soul stands witness in the presence of the Lord against thee, that in thy cities, towns, and market streets I have passed <586> with bitter cries and streams of tears, for almost two years time, warning you of this day that is coming upon you as a snare, with this lamentation, O people of England, repent! O that thou wouldst consider the time of thy visitation! O that thou wouldst prize thy time before the door of mercy is shut! Now the light is risen, how art thou found slaying the Lamb of God? In thee is found slain the blood of the innocent; O England! the blood of the innocent cries loud in the ears of the Lord God of power. Oh that thou wouldst consider and repent, and prize thy time before thou be consumed and made a common deluge forever! Thou art fat and full, thou art fitted for slaughter, and great and terrible will thy day of calamity be; the sword of the Lord is drawn against thee and will be sheathed in thy bowels. Oh repent! repent, and let the destruction of Sodom be a warning to thee. O England! fitted for slaughter; thou art light and vain, thou kicks against the Lord, thou lifts up thy heel against him. O England, the time is come that nothing will satisfy but blood; yea, yea the time is come that nothing will satisfy but blood. Thou art making thyself drunken with the blood of the innocent; he will be avenged of thee, till blood come up to the horse's bridle; thou art making thyself drunken with the blood of the innocent, and now he will give thee blood to drink, for thou art worthy; for he will be avenged of thee till he is satisfied with thy blood. Come down ye high and lofty ones and lie in the dust, and repent in sackcloth, and lie low before the Lord, and come and see if by any means there may be a place for repentance found.
This mournful cry began at London, so to Colchester, and through the nation: Ah Lord! what shall I yet say for them? or how shall I enter into a treaty for them? Behold, they have slighted thy tenders of grace, and they wipe their mouths, and take their fills of mirth; and they wipe their mouths and cry, "Tush, the Lord is gone far off." They cry, "Miracles are ceased, and there is no revelation; tush, the Lord seeth not." When thy servants have showed them thy mind, they have said, "Let him do his worst." O Lord, arise in thy zeal, and show thy power, for they blaspheme thy name continually; how have they slighted thy love, now thou hast visited the earth with thy pure voice? How cruelly have they beaten thy prophets, and now thy <587> Son is come they conspire to kill him?
O generation of unbelievers! now is not the Scripture fulfilled that saith, "When the Son of man come shall he find faith upon the earth?" Is it not seen that you love the world too well? You look for the reign of Christ; I know you do, for there is that in your consciences which showeth you that your soul is in death and waits for redemption; but how have you slighted the messenger of reconciliation, that hath told you in secret that you should come away and leave your vanities. It had been well if you had minded the check and reproof; if you had done so, your hearts had been purified; then now you had been ready to meet him. When he fulfilled all righteousness, and ascended unto his Father, he gave down his Spirit among you, which hath visited your fathers and you unto this day, which was to minister unto you until his second coming. But how hath your ears been stopped against it; did it he ever appear in such an age before? But now the heavens is loaded with a blessing, and there is not room in the earth to receive it. Make room, make room, enlarge your hearts, for it is there that he will reign, I see, and as your hearts is enlarged, you will come down as Zacchaeus did; for he is made a little lower than the angels, that so he may raise up the innocent seed which lies scattered in your dark hearts. As far as you are obedient to the Spirit that preaches to your souls in prison, so far you make room for his reign, so far you become members of the body; for now he hath prepared you a leader and a captain, doth not your eyes see the Lord hath prepared him a body fitted for sufferings in patience, which he hath crown'd with love and meekness, so that the more you torture him, the more he loves, yet you cannot see; but to you that live in hope my heart is enlarged, yet to see the redemption of Zion, and to enjoy the glorious reign of Christ; the Lord give you the desire of your souls, for now is your time to receive. Wherefore I beseech you sit you under your own vine, feed in peace, go not forth after them that cry, Lo here, and Lo there, for they are false watchmen; they will smite you and bereave you of your fresh springs which you should enjoy in the Spirit; but watch low and still in your minds, and with that which is just, judge that which is unjust. And when your wills would have liberty, let it be crossed with the light; <588> then you will see that in your obedience you will have peace, and the peace that your obedience will bring, will so knit your hearts to the Lord, that nothing will be too hard for you. Then comes your hearts to be opened to receive the blessing, and your minds steadfast in communion with the Lord. He will visit you with his fresh springs and cause the seed to grow; and as it grows up to God, it brings the Son down to you, who is given into the world to redeem your souls from the power of sin and death; and so as he purifies you with judgment, so your temples will be fitted for Christ to rule and reign in you, and then comes his will to be done in the earth as it is in heaven; and as your hearts, minds and affections incline to the Lord, you will see faith increase; and by patient waiting in hope, you will see the hills leveled and the mountains laid low of sin and corruption; and when the Lord hath plucked your feet out of the snare, and set you upon a plain, then will you run the way of his commandments with great delight; and this is the state of virginity.
Oh you noble hearts! it is you that are fit to entertain Christ in his reign, for in your obedience the precious springs of life doth open in you, and pure consolation you feel, songs of joy and triumph, and the Father, Son and Spirit meets in you; then hath the soul liberty from the devouring enemy. As the pure Spirit gets victory over the evil spirit, so the Spirit of Christ comes to reign in your mortal bodies, then comes the showers of grace as the morning dew, which bathes your souls in the blood of the Lamb, and waters the tender plant in you. This is a wise virgin that is ready to meet the Bridegroom in this his day. I counsel you that have oil to trim your lamps and prepare to meet the Lamb, for now it is full time; for he that was to come, is come, and his time is short, and then no more time. Make haste away you virgins of the day, for time is short; for now is the time of sealing come; he that is filthy, let him be filthy still; and he that is holy must be received into the body. Now blessed are you that are found ready; for now we see there hath been terrible wars betwixt Michael and the dragon to make room for the Babe; not one step but through blood that we can get for entertainment amongst you; but now I see the foundation is firmly & deeply laid through sufferings; and now set your battle never so strong, <589> it will grow more firm; but blessed be the peacemakers, for they are fit to have the mansion in my Father's kingdom. Why should it seem a strange thing to you to see Christ reign in his saints and fit and prepare the vessels, and make our bodies fit for himself to dwell in, seeing our hearts are ready to bow to his will? And is it not more for his glory, though it be a greater cross to your wills, to purify these bodies and pour out the dregs thereof, than to bring down that body which was crucified at Jerusalem, seeing all are in his power and one Spirit rules in both. By much tribulation, anguish of spirit, and sufferings of the flesh hath he now fitted a body for himself, who hath conquered death and hell; so perfect is he that he can lay down his life for his enemies, not opening his mouth to defend himself. This vessel is as precious to me as that which was tortured at Jerusalem, seeing the Father hath prepared them both, and the same graces springs from both according to its time of working, which now is finished in sufferings. Shall I not follow thee unto death, O my beloved? yea, seeing thou art revealed in me by my Father to be the Son of Peace.
Now what though he was brought up with you? despise him not as your fathers did, but the Scriptures must be fulfilled: "A prophet is not without honor but in his own country." Surely if you knew the bowels of love that flows to you, you would be more meek; what shall we do to declare our love? The Lord knows we love all men, from the magistrate to the meanest, and delight to live in love and peace with all men; and if any do lord it over you, and judge you in their wills, they must be judged. Now I beseech you, is not this the manner of the reign of Christ, to purify the bodies of his saints to make them temples for himself, and quicken them by his Spirit? And he that leads the way is the captain, king, or prophet, which in all ages the people loved and honored. Would you were worthy to receive the salvation of his love and peace, which the showers of his rain hath brought; his reign is glorious. Now hearts are knit together in unity each to other, and praises springs freely up to the Father of all, and here is none shut out who is real-hearted: whether ever we see your faces outwardly, yet I am sure if you love the Lord and be obedient to him, we shall meet in Spirit, and that Spirit will reveal to you that innocency must be king. Therefore friends all, use the <590> world as if you used it not, for the time is very short, and every one shall be taken where is; he that is filthy shall be filthy still; and he that is holy, shall be holy still; for no place of repentance shall be left. And many shall say, Lord, we have preached in thy name, and in thy name we have cast out devils, and done many wonderful things; but he shall say unto them: Depart, ye workers of iniquity, I know you not. And they shall fly into the dens and caves of the earth, and shall call to the mountains and rocks to fall on them and cover them from the glory of his presence.
Watch, watch, the time hasteth exceedingly, when time shall be no more; for the gate shall be shut, and no place left for repentance.
Consider I beseech you how clearly the Scripture is fulfilled in our days; are you not all talking of the reign of Christ, but knows it not? And this is the cause of it: My ways saith the Lord are not yours, nor my thoughts yours, for as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than yours, & none knoweth his will but those that are willing to be guided by an innocent spirit, and that liveth out of their own thoughts, and they only are the virgins that will be found ready to reign with Christ Jesus in righteousness; for they are diligent in the depth of the search of their own hearts, and sees how the Lord breaketh them into tenderness, and maketh them subject to his will; as Christ was to his Father, so are we in this evil world.
Now I would not have you ignorant of the mighty day of the Lord, and of his glorious appearing amongst the sons of men; but rather that you should consider how that it stands more for his glory to cross all men's wills than to fulfill them; and what if he will be pleased to do as the potter doth with his clay, who having made one vessel, as seemed him good, and seeth that there is yet an opportunity for him to break it & make it more for his honor than it was, seeing it is yet clay in his hand, and so is man in the hands of the Almighty. Oh my friends! consider how much more shall the Lord be glorified in purifying a vessel fit for himself to dwell in all righteousness, meekness, and <591> longsuffering. And thus we see his reign, and rejoice in sufferings as deceivers, and yet true.
So friends consider, that if it had pleased him, he could have prayed to his Father, and he would have sent him legions of angels; but he chose rather to suffer, and thereby to cross his own will, and also all men's wills; for surely he is the same now as he was in former ages, who always appeared contrary to the expectations of all the world; but if he should appear in the way you have long looked for him, then man would have something to boast in; but now boasting is excluded, for it hath pleased the Father of spirits to appear in a spirit a little lower than angels, and so is hid in the clouds from all men's eyes, of corrupt hearts, and self-conceited ones, who thought they had an eye to have pierced through the clouds, are now found the blindest of all sorts; for as he suffered at his going away, so doth he at his coming again, for so saith the Scripture, "he shall come in like manner as he went."
There's none can reign with Christ but he
That is a virgin pure in innocency.
No evil thoughts nor words must be,
For that will stain virginity.
Oh how excellent is thy ways thou God of mercy and truth! surely they that go out of thy paths are not worthy to walk therein; they that forget thy love have not found the sweetness of it; why should it be that any that have known thy word should cast it behind their backs? But let my soul cleave to thy statutes, & let obedience be my life continually; so shall I be acquainted with thy will, O Lord, thou knowest I love thy counsel, and in it my heart pondereth; and if thou wilt open thy bosom and let me come nearer to thee, that is all I desire; but let me remember thy former mercies, for they are life; how hast thou led me through the deserts and refreshed me with thy crystal streams, & gave me manna for food? How gently didst thou guide me when all comforts failed me, and removed the mountains out of my way, and hath set me upon a plane, that I run the way of thy commandments with great delight? Why hath thy rod been so light upon <592> me, seeing my sins have been multiplied? How have I scaped the rod of thine anger? Nay, thou didst put a rod into my hand, to smite the backslider and hardhearted. O Lord, thou knowest it was thy will, I did not resist thee. Oh that they might know it, the rod, and who it was that did appoint it! And now thou hast taken it out of my hand, and bowed me to thy will, and hath opened a door of mercy to all sorts of people; oh let thy mercy shower down abundantly, and fill the earth with thy blessing that thy works may praise thee, for now praises are ready for thee, and many hearts panteth after thee that have long lain amongst the pots. All the upright love thee, for they have been as a chased roe upon the mountains, which have wanted a shepherd; wherefore arise O Lord and visit the nations with thy appearance, that they may know thy salvation.
O my beloved! Where hast thou been hidden? In the clefts of the rocks? and I could by no means find thee, though I have sought thee day & night with a mournful and bleeding heart? But when I was still and patient, then thou didst appear to me with pure consolation, and then we did sup together; but then thou wouldst withdraw again, and then my soul would mourn, for I saw thy presence was my life and preservation. Thou didst command me forth into thy work, to invite those in which knew thee not, and I was obedient to thee; when I returned and gave thee an account thou didst accept my service, though men denied it, and thou gavest into my bosom a double blessing. Oh! how thou hast drawn me unto thee & inclined my heart to thy will; how hast thou endeared my soul within thy bosom? Thou hast tried me, and in thy trial thou hast found me steadfast; it all that I desired of thee was, and is, that thou wouldst wholly take me into thy counsel. I ever loved thy reproof and dreaded thy anger, for I find correction is as balm to me, and I have not murmured at them. O pure, eternal, perfect Lord God! when I came near to know thee it was life forevermore, for thy presence overcame me; but how have I been tossed to and fro in this dark world? surely thou hadst a purpose to make use of me in thy will and <593> time; for the devil hath set very sore against me, for before ever I saw the light of the sun or received a natural birth in this visible world, I was rejected of men; for my parents denied me a birth; and as concerning self, it had been good I had not been born; for I have not had pleasure in this world but have stood as one alone, and since I knew the way to thee I have exceedingly hasted out of it; and before I knew the way, I sought for the way to all that pretended to direct the way; but they had stolen thy words, & had not thy life, so they wearied me and profited me not; but now thou hast revealed thy Son in me. Oh! how am I overcome with thy presence? and now I shall live with thee forever.
Is it become a crime not to judge another in his work, but to let him stand and fall to his own master Christ Jesus, who alone hath power over the conscience? Doth not the apostle Paul say, "Wherefore dost thou judge thy brother? Wherefore dost thou set at naught thy brother?" Did not he say this to those that judged one another? And did not he plead the cause of both for one against the other that judged, when they could neither of them bear the other? yet did not he then vindicate both in their contrary persuasions, and judged only their judgings of one another (Rom. 14)?
Did Christ judge John Baptist because he came neither eating nor drinking? or did John judge him because he came both eating and drinking? though the world judged both, saying of the one, "He hath a devil," of the other, "He is a glutton and a wine-bibber, a friend of publicans and sinners."
Did Barnabas judge Boanerges because he was a son of thunder? or Boanerges judge Barnabas, because he was a son of consolation?
It is said (Cant. 4:16), "Awake, O north winds, and come thou south, and blow upon my garden, that the spices thereof may flow out. Let my beloved come into his garden and eat his pleasant fruits." Let him that readeth understand. And let not the south wind say to the north wind, there hath been no need of thee. Neither let the north wind withstand the south wind, and say, there is no need of thee. Or let not the garden say to the <594> winds, there is no need of you or either of you, for both are needful for causing the spices to flow out, that the Beloved may enter into his garden to eat his pleasant fruits. Let him that readeth understand what the winds are.
This is a day of shaking and staggering to them whose minds are without, busying themselves to comprehend the measures of others. The only way to be at rest & quiet, is to mind our own measure, committed to us, and to be faithful therein; to keep pace with our own guide, who leads the lambs as they are able to bear. Let the weak not judge that which they comprehend not; and let the strong not despise the weak, being found faithful in their measure; and so unity is preserved in the body, from the youngest babe to the highest grown; and there's breadth enough in our Father's kingdom for both. And this preserved unity between Paul and his weaklings, John and his little children, Christ and his babes.
The day is appearing which I have waited for, in which all that have their faces towards God in truth shall own one another in their several measures, and love shall be increased. The children of the kingdom shall feel the love of God in one another, and shall embrace that, and not trouble themselves with the several work of others, or narrowness or largeness of understanding mysteries; but love shall embrace that which is of itself, and so the flock of God shall walk in peace, without pushings, judgings, whisperings, backbitings, censurings, every one growing up in his own measure. This day is appearing, if it go not in again.
Oh how wonderful are thy works, O God! the depths of thy counsels are past finding out. Who knoweth thy ways? and to whom dost thou give account of thy actions; how dost thou order the works of thy hands? Oh! how vain a thing is man when thou turnest thy hand upon him? How often hast thou broken me to pieces? How often hast thou led me through deaths? How hath thy terror many a time seized upon me? and thy dread made me <595> afraid? Thou hast bruised me from morning till night: oh! who may stand before thee, thou judge of all men? In the days of my affliction, how have I roared from morning till night! Then did I seek death but could not find it; and thirst to be covered in darkness, but could not obtain it. I said, I will go down into forgetfulness, but thou would not suffer me. But in thy will thou raised me, and sent me to the nations. A sign and a wonder thou hast made me, and a stranger to them who had well known me. Yea, how often hast thou changed me, so that I have not been known to myself? And thou hast hid me from such as have followed me. Thou hast lifted me up, & I have been exalted, thou hast cast me down, and I have been despised. I have been a scorn to fools that knows not thy ways, and as a prey to the devourer. Then I said, thou hast cast me off; else why am I covered with blackness? But this was my impatience, my haste, and my folly. Thou smilest upon me in the midst thereof, and I was judged; yea, I loathed myself before thee. Oh how hast thou turned me in a moment! Thou liftedst my head out of prison and set me above such as sought to destroy me. Yea, how often hast thou redeemed me from death? how often have I been beset about? Yea, the eyes of evil men have been daily upon me to see my fall. Yea, many a time had I been driven from my steadfastness; but thy promises have been my refuge. Yea, had it not been for thy word, I had despaired of hope; therefore do I love it more than gold. Oh that men knew thy faithfulness! Out of the pit have I cried to thee, and thou heardest me and didst answer out of thy holy place. Then I said, I will fear thee forever, and obey thee till death, because thy word hath strengthened me. Thou turned away thy face, and I became darkness. Then I said, I am forsaken, for thou hast found iniquity in me. Thus have I been as clay in thy hands, and durst not ask thee an account of thy doings. O thou faithful one! how dreadful art thou? how powerful is thy presence? with thy breath dost thou change the world and makest all things new. So dost thou make man forget his travail, and turns his sorrow into a song. Praise the Lord O my soul, while I have a being among the sons of men.
Since thou hast drawn me to thee, how doth my soul love thee my God! Since thou hast begotten me to thee, how doth my heart bow before thee my Father? How doth my soul worship thee? How do I delight to live with thee? It is life to abide continually in thy presence, to receive thy commands and do them. Oh how hast thou made me with thy hand and formed me anew with thy free Spirit! so that the tedious ways of wearisomeness is forgotten, and I love to run the way after thee, and to tread thy paths. Surely all the time of my life is too little to serve thee in thy holy ways, my redeemer and my king. Oh! let my soul forever live in thy bosom, that I may continually taste the breathings of thy pure life, which fills my soul with fatness & my heart with pleasure. With tears I have found thee; with joy I live with thee: Oh how am I afraid to lose thee! O how strong is love! I cannot live without thee. Blessed be the day in which thou called me out from my kindred and set a hedge betwixt me and mine acquaintance, that thou might turn me to thyself. Thou set my familiars afar from me, that thou might bring me to thee alone, O my joy! Thou hast set all the world against me, that I might seek thee to take my part. Then did I cry unto thee, and thou wast near; for this was thy purpose concerning me, that I might know thee. In secret didst thou support me lest my faith should fail; yet not in my way, lest I should be exalted and so forget thy fear; yet would never suffer me to want thy goodness. How often hast thou stripped me of all, yea, my dearest friends, who were as my life, were set against me in judgment; this was done that thou might prove me in the fire, to melt me and try me, that thou might bend me for thyself alone. Then did I see how vain a thing is man, how soon is he changed into a lie. I said, To thee alone I commit my cause. Then didst thou draw near and justified me; thou healed my wound with thy anointing, thou poured in thy consolation as oil into my bones, which was dried with sorrow. Thou made me forget all my grief; thou renewed my youth, and my flesh came again as a child; my heart thou madest new within me. A clear vessel didst thou make me after the breaking of the old. Then didst thou fill me with thy goodness; thy word became my food, <597> and the joy of thy Spirit was my strength: I became obedient, and thy love was spread in my heart. My soul is satisfied with thee, my God and my redeemer. Praise the Lord.
Thou hast seen, O my God, thou hast seen it, when the wicked one laid a snare for my feet in the day of my trouble, when he spread his net to take me unawares. In the dark he spread it, he covered it, he said in his heart, he shall not know thereof till I have caught him within my compass, he shall not perceive it; so was I as a bird, innocent, not knowing that it was for my life. Then didst thou show me it, O thou preserver of the helpless; thou said, Hearken unto me, so will I save thee from his subtlety; follow me, so shalt thou escape. Thou led me in a foolish way to the wisdom of the enemy, but I found it a way of peace and safety, and a path of purity in which my soul delighted. With holiness didst thou compass me, and beset me about with salvation. Though mine enemies compassed me about like a flood, yet was my soul in safety. Thou discovered to me the man of mischief, and said in secret: this is he that seeks for thy life. Shall I forget thee my God? Shall I forget thee? Shall not I have thee ever before me? By thy mercy hast thou gained my heart. Thou knowest I love thee; incline thou my heart unto thy fear continually: keep thou me, for my trust is only in thee, so shall I praise thy name forever, and spread thy glory and goodness while I have any being. Praise the Lord O my soul.
Evil eyes do watch me, O my God! they come to spy out my ways, who have mischief in their hearts, and according to the mischief of their own hearts, so do they wrest my ways, till they have filled their hearts with envy, the bitterness whereof they vent when they shoot their arrows; they have pierced my soul with lies, wherewith they reproach thy pure ways; they are not afraid to speak evil of thy Spirit. O Lord, wilt thou teach me in innocency, do thou guide me in thy pure path, so shall I not be ashamed when I behold the face of my enemies. Give me not up to the wills of them that seek for my life; rescue my soul, and I shall praise thee, my redeemer, and my God. In thee alone I put <598> my trust: let not the wicked have dominion over the poor and helpless; break the wills of the blood-thirsty man. Thou seest how many have joined hands against me in this day of my trouble, to take my life; yet in thee is my trust. Plead for me, O my God, declare thou my innocency. With cruel jealousy have they wounded me, when they have condemned thy righteous ways. They have done what they could to cause me to disobey thee, and have set themselves to stop my way that I should not follow thee. O my God, thou hast seen it, and hast redeemed me out of their hands, yet have they cast out floods of reproach after me; they have tempted me daily. Hadst not thou holden me up when they caused me to stagger, I had fallen forever; but thy promises was a stay unto me. Oh let me never forget thy faithfulness; let me mention thy name to all that want a refuge.
The spring of summer doth appear,
The bud is fresh and green;
The turtle's voice doth sweetly sound;
Our King in Zion's seen.
Shall we not sound this thing abroad?
Shall not we praises sing?
O subtle self! thou hast long withstood
The praises of our King.
But since Zion he hath set up
By power of his own,
To all the citizens thereof
Our God and King is known.
What we have seen we spread abroad,
What we both feel and know,
Which hath the vessels filled with praise,
Like floods that overflow.
The heavens above, the earth below,
Doth both in praises meet.
Righteousness runs down, truth springs up,
And doth each other greet.
Purity hath put forth her voice,
And love doth loudly cry,
Innocency a trumpet sounds
To all the passers by.
Holiness from heaven is sounded forth
Unto our God alone.
Peace is proclaim'd; in purity
Our King is on his throne.
The heathen rage to hear thereof,
The kings together flock,
And all the world doth set themselves
To overturn this Rock
From whence these waters doth descend,
That makes this fruitful sound;
For his appearance none can bear
Who in self and sin are found.
So such with sand this flood would stop,
With earth our wells would fill;
And thousands are together set,
Who seeks this Seed to spill.
Yet shall we sit and sing thy praise
Whilst we a being have,
Though all the world do us withstand
Whose souls are in the grave.
Oh Holy! Holy! Holy! still
Both night and day we cry;
Thy song most sweet, thy praises pure
Shall cause our foes to fly.
O Zion safe! how art thou set
Upon a hill most high?
Thy life not known, thy joys are hid
From all that pass thee by.
Thy babes are plants of holiness;
God's husbandry thou art;
Yet all dark powers of wickedness
Against thee take a part.
By day the evil tidings came,
By night the arrows fly.
Yet in thy house I safety have
Within thy temple high.
a. This pamphlet has no title page and is known by its opening words: "O England thy Time is Come." Its authors are James Nayler, Martha Simmonds, Hannah Stranger and William Tomlinson; its date may be inferred from the title of the third Nayler section ("A Morning Song when I being in Prison at Westminster") to be around December 1656, since Nayler had never been in prison at Westminster until he was sent there from Bristol to be tried by Parliament. This is the only public statement by Nayler and his companions at that time.