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Full text of "A patriotic discourse : delivered by the Rev. Joshua Lawrence, at the Old Church in Tarborough, North Carolina, on Sunday, the 4th of July, 1830"

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At the Old Church in Tarborough, North- Carolina, on Sunday, the 
4TH OF 3U&1T, 1S30. 

XIX Chapter of Acts, 25th verse: "Whom he called together, with -workmen of like 
occupation, and said sirs, ye know by this craft we have our wealth." 

My audience: this day is the memorable fourth of July. ...a day long to be 
remembered by the American people.... the day when the citizens of young A- 
merica had the hardihood and patriotism, in the face of the sun and of British 
armies, to declare they owed no allegiance to the King of Great Britain.. ..the 
day when the nerves of the hearts of our ancestors were strong and unyielding 
to British oppression, though they knew they must stake their all, their fortunes 
and their lives, in opposition to British cruelty; yet their ardor and courage fail- 
ed them not, but proclaimed to the world that America should be free and inde- 
pendent of all Kings and foreign States whatever, and make her own laws, or 
their lives should be a sacrifice to the cause of liberty. And that God, who 
hates robbery, cruelty, and tyranny, in nations as well as individuals, prospered 
their cause and gave success to their arms, to the joy and glory of America. 
And we are this day, my audience, sitting under our vines and fig trees and 
none to make us afraid, as the effect of that patriotic blood that stained roads, 
fields, and decks of ships, fifty years ago, from the feet and bosoms of our suffer- 
ing forefathers. I would then this day, my respectable audience, remind you 
that the price of this inestimable jewel, civil and religious liberty, was the price 
of blood. ..the blood of long forgotten fathers, who purchaser! this jewel for us, 
their children. Then for heaven's and your children's sake, don't sell it for 
liquor nor barter it with money-hunting designing priests. Remember, also, 
that civil and religious liberty must live and die together; for hand in hand 
they came to us out of the revolutionary struggle... .and I would further remind 
you that nothing but blood and treasure can perpetuate liberty to your children; 
therefore, be watchful, be jealous at the first attempt made lo attack or take this 
prize from your children, and rise like one man,' and if needs be, transmit it to 
them at the first cost. And as we all enjoy this blessing in common, every 
man should act his part and put his shoulder to the wheel to perpetuate this 
blessing against designing usurping tyrants, whether kings or priests. And as 
the wise man said there is a time for all things, so, since the establishing of in- 
dependence fifty years ago, much blood and treasure have been lost by the sons 
of liberty to maintain it, during the space it has been enjoyed by us. The A- 
merican statesmen have not been idle, in thought, word, pen and service to vie 
with their foreign opponents; our soldiers have come forward to act their part 
by land and sea, and have mingled their warm crimson fluid with their enemies 
at the mouths of cannon and the points of bayonets; nor are our officers less, but 
equally or more praiseworthy* because of the action of both body and mind in 
opposition to their opponents in the field and on the sea. And what shall I say of 
old Andrew, who taught the generals of European pride, not to dare snatch at 
the pole of American liberty, for while in the attempt he plucked their laurels 
and now wears them in his crown. Thus from the President to the. soldier and 

the sailor, they have acted a noble, a bloody and an honorable part to support the 
Declaration of Independence proclaimed on this memorable day by our fathers. 

But, my audience, where is the poor priest all this fifty years? While these 
noble patriots have been struggling through blood and carnage, and political 
services to their country, to defend and perpetuate civil liberty to themselves 
and children, in comparison of whose services gold is but as sand, they, the 
priests, are aloof from war and from the halls of legislation by the laws of their 
country. Why, are they drones in the American hive? No, my audieqpe, 1 
only view them as held in reserve, and I now consider the time come, yea fully 
come, for them to take the field in defence of religious liberty, at the risk of life 
and blood; then, oh, ye idle, independent priests, gird on armor, helmet, shield, 
and sw 7 ord,and come forth to the battle of religious independence against usurping 
tyrannical priests, for the rights of conscience, dearer than life itself, are invaded; 
there are laurels for you, and the liberty of conscience of your children is at 
stake. I say arise, and fight \yith tongue and pen the cause of religious liberty, 
for when once gone, perhaps, as in other nations, gone for ever. For, my hear- 
ers, there are many apparent facts, that show to me that designing priests are 
endeavoring to bind us with the bands of spiritual tyranny, and rivet the broken 
chains of British priestcraft on us and our children, and become our conscience 
keepers and purse plunderers as in days of yore, any thing said to the contrary 
notwithstanding. As one who has enjoyed the sweets of liberty for fifty years, 
I come forward and stand forth to help my fellow citizens in this common cause 
of liberty, nor will I yield it for less than cost; and therefore, now call your at- 
tention to my text, upon which I shall make some remarks, to show you how 
to judge rightly in this matter. 

On a strict examination of history, it will be found that all religions, whether 
heathen, pagan, Mahometan, or Christian, are founded on a belief of certain 
tales, whether true or false; with an injunction of certain ceremonies or practices 
to be performed by the believers of such tales. Then, to judge of the truth of 
any religion whatever,' we have only to judge of the tale that is told and the ve- 
racity of the teller, and the evidences corroborating the whole circumstance; and 
whether self-interest, for fame, honor, or wealth, is connected to the cause, as the 
main spring of action to the practices that such religion enjoins on its votaries. 

As all sects profess that their religion is from above, like the Ephesians.... 
what man is there that knoweth not (said the Town Clerk) how the city of the 
Ephesians is a worshipper of the great goddess Diana, and of the image which 
fell down from Jupiter... mark that. ...fell down from Jupiter. But where is the 
evidence on which this priestly tale is founded, by which Demetrius and his 
crafty gang got their wealth by making shrines for the goddess Diana? Mark 
this heathen religion, vyealth to the craft men; therefore, all could cry out for 
the space of two hours, great is Diana of the Ephesians. ..she came down from 
Jupiter. And no doubt the priests, as well as other craft men, were foremost 
and loudest in the mighty cry, until the whole city was in confusion, because 
their several crafts were in danger. 

I shall now endeavor merely to sketch out, my hearers, in a few particulars, 
five different religions that have been established in the world; and in a short 
way examine some evidences attending them, to shew the difference between a 
true and a false religion. 

The first religion that I shall mention is the religion of public opinion, no 
matter what may be its creed, form, or. ceremonies, nor whether it be heathen, 
pagan, or Christian, so that public opinion in any nation gives it currency. For 
it is but too well known that public opinion governs the world, and not individ- 
ual.. .and though oftener wrong than right, yet because of that force which cus* 


torn and example have upon the human mind, there is an itching disposition ia 
man to conform and be like other people, and travel the road of public opinion 
in fashions of all kinds, religion not excepted. Hence, in almost every nation 
we find a different religion, propagated, believed, and practiced, and thought by 
its votaries to be the best in the world; because the religion of antiquity and oi 
the nation, and the sect of which they are members, from the idolator to the 
Christian, without examining by some proper standard impartially for them- 
selves, the evidences on which such religion is predicated. Thus we find Abra- 
ham's family served other gods, beyond the river Euphrates; and that Rachel 
loved her father Laban's idol-gods enough to steal them. The Egyptians wor- 
shipped a pied bull imitation of which Aaron made the golden calf, and Je- 
roboam the two golden calves at Dan and Bethel; with a great variety of gods 
mentioned in scripture as well as in heathen mythology, such as Baal, Bell, Baal- 
peor, Baalherith, Bemphim, Nergal, Nibhas, Tamas, Sheshach. Nebo, Nisroch, 
Meni, Mahuzzam, Asntoroth, Succothbenotb, and Diana, &c..and in fine, their 
modes of worship and ceremonies were various as well as their gods; which you 
can know by comparing the worship of Moloch, Dagon, and the Babylonish 
eating god; while they also worshipped deceased kings, animals, plants, stones, 
sun, moon, stars, anr^a thousand other imaginary gods, according to their fancy. 
Now all thesse may be wrong, but all cannot be right; and although the nations 
differed in names of gods, modes of worship, rites and ceremonies, yet public 
opinion predominated every where, and led captive the duped multitude from 
generation to generation. And although they differed as above observed, yet 
in two things they differed not; and these were, each sect had its priests, and 
the priests of all sects made a craft of it. Witness Micah's idol priest, who 
when the Dannites promised him greater wages than Micah gave him, stole his 
gods and away with them for a more plump craft from the Dannites... like some 
of our modern priests, from town to town to find a more fat craft. We may add 
to this religion of public opinion that of Simon Magus, the priest of Jupiter, 
conjurers, soothsayers, diviners, astrologers, necromancers, charmers, spellers, 
fortunetellers, &c. nearly all of which rest on some novel, mysterious, priestl) r 
tale, or false shews and say soes, of those that make a craft of their art on duped 
devotees. And thus every stratagem of hypocrisy and duplicity, is made and 
has been made use of by priests and others to impose on the strong, the weak, 
and the credulous, to rivet their crafts to get their wealth like Demetrius by 
shrine making; so that we see all hands in false religions make a craft of it, from 
the priest to the lying fortuneteller. 

Now I ask, by what means have all these different religions and cheating arts 
been established in the different nations of the earth? J answer, I believe that man 
was made and is born a religious being, and that he cannot reconcile himself to live 
and die without a ground of hope, whether true or false, to satisfy his conscience 
before the judge of futurity.... if a true hope it is attended with fears; if a false 
hope, if it is the best he knows, it is to him as if true, because he knows no bet- 
ter ground of hope, and therefore, it answers his present purpose in some good 
degree. Secondly, I think that it is impossible for a nation to exist, and gov- 
ernment to be administered in it, without some form of religion as a band to tie 
society together; and the best religion man knows he takes hold of, for refuge to 
his trembling soul. Thirdly, because by the fall of the first man he lost his God 
and the true knowledge of him, and become vain in his imagination, and his 
foolish heart darkened; and therefore he has been so easily imposed on, and 
worshipped and served the creature more than the creator. The making of idol 
gods became a great craft of wealth, the attendant priests on these deaf and 
dumb deities made a great craft pf oracles, &c, a word, the whole worship of 


idols was a craft of gain to the various officers of the craft, from the idol maker 
to the shrine seller. Jeroboam had his craft for sitting up the two golden calves 
at Dan and Bethel; and that was, to maintain his crown and gel his wealth out 
of the ten tribes of Israel. Nebuchadnezzar, Balaam, Judas, Simon Magus, Ga- 
hariah, Micah's priest, and all witches, conjurers, fortune tellers, &c. have their 
several forms of ceremony and religious cheats as a craft for gain; and so all of 
the same craft may be expected to be called together, lest the temple of Diana 
should be despised and her magnificence destroyed whom all Asia and the world 
worshippeth. What a pity that a goddess of such antiquity and high venera- 
tion, should, by such pestilent fellows as Paul and his comrades, be set at naught craft men come together.. men of Israel help.. Congressmen help, 
our craft is in danger. 

If we examine the Bible for marks of a false prophet, teacher, or preacher, 
we shall find these as unchangeable marks given throughout the scriptures.. .gain 
by godliness.. ..greedy of filthy lucre.. .the fleece and not the flock. ..or, craft by 
their religion; and every false religion introduced into the world ? . has these 
marks of craft engraven on it, from the idolatrous to the metamorphosed Chris- 
tian religion; and is made by its priests a craft of gain, honor and applause, ex- 
cept the religion of Jesus Christ, which is not a religion of craft. Witness, Si- 
mon Magus, trying to buy the Holy Ghost of Peter, to form a new craft, after 
the preaching of the apostles had broken his former craft on the people. Wit- 
ness, the damsel by the craft of soothsaying brought her master much gain. 
Witness,, the craft of Jezebel's prophets, and the prophets of Baal, always pro- 
phecyinggood things concerning wicked Ahab, that they might have the favor 
of the king and fare sumptuously at Queen Jezebel's table. Witness, Balaam, 
under the craft of sacrifices, divining to find out the mind of God to curse Israel 
lo get Balaak's promised silver and greatness. Time would fail me to tell of 
the craft of Judas the purse bearer; of Gahariah, who made a craft of the mira- 
cle of his master; of those that followed for the loaves and fishes; and all the de- 
ceptive crafts, fortunetelling not excepted, for gain or wealth. 

I shall then say, that all false religions, of whatever sort, that have been in- 
troduced into the world, have been founded on some mysterious, novel, deceiv- 
ing tales, under the garb of virtue, and by certain false shews without evidence, 
founded on facts of sense or miracles done in the presence of eye and ear wit- 
nesses to confirm the truth thereof, have this mark, craft.. ..from Sechem, who 
would be circumcised to get Dinah and Jacob's cattle, up to the missionary beg- 
gar; and have only been religion in masquerade, imposed on the credulous, and 
gained strength in process of time by the cunning, art, and stratagem of priests, 
and established itself by public opinion on succeeding generations. And there 
is as much danger in opposing public opinion, however vague and unscriptural, 
in the country where such public opinion reigns, as there was for Paul to say a 
word against the goddess Diana; for one reason only, the priesti' craft is in dan- 
ger, therefore such a tumultuous uproar is made on the man that dares question 
public opinion. , 

It is easy to see, by referring to the scriptures, that this whole train of idola- 
trous worship and religious cheats, was and is copied from the Old and New 
Testament... from God's having sent prophets into the world, diviners and for- 
tunetellers have arisen; the oracles of idol temples are in imitation of consulting 
the Jewish high priest with his urim and thummim; and the craft of priests for 
gain, from the tithes paid to the Jewish high priest.. .and from the New Testa- 
ment, the laborer is worthy of His meat, ministers in this day set up their claim 
as a right to their craft of gain by their preaching. But it is plain, by referring 
to the scriptures, that all these religious erafts are of the devil* transformed^. 


after the fashion of God's ways, to deceive and ruin the souls of men; for the 
devil has his temples, his oracJes, his priests, his sacrifices, his rites, his cere- 
monies, his baptism, his altars, his saints, his prophets, his transformed minis- 
ters, as well as God. But there is as wide a difference between the two as God 
and the devil, or heaven and hell, or this world and that which is to come; and 
this difference lies all in this one mark. ...craft.. ..or running greedily after the 
error of Balaam, or supposing gain is godliness.. .from such turn away, for they 
are the ministers of the devil. This is a mere sketch of crafts of times of old, 
in various forms by priests and others under the sanctity of religion imposed, 
enforced, engrafted and maintained by cheat, fraud, guile, and hypocrisy; and 
fastened by public opinion, custom, example and teaching, on rising youth from 
age to age to revere the holy sanctified priest and the religion of their ances- 
tors, though they be of the devil's making and have been blood suckers on earth. 
And craft men love to have it so, or else they lose their gain and Demetrius his 
wealth by shrine making. Hence all of the same craft may be expected to unite 
against gospel truth, which if admitted, overturns to the very foundation all 
priest craft; then no wonder to hear the craft men roar out from pulpit and 
press, you ought not to oppose us, our cause is God's cause; you ought to throw 
your money into the treasury of the Lord, to help the Lord convert the heathen ; 
you are an infidel, yea a devil if you don't.. ..when the cause is men's cause, to 
say the least of it; and the treasury, the treasury of craft men, to get money out 
of the pockets of honest men, children, widows, negroes, and Indians, to en- 
able craft men to live in idleness and luxury on the labor of others. But, said 
Paul to his brethren, these hands have administered to my necessities, and I 
have shewed you all things how that so laboring you ought to support the weak, 
&c. Thus I must leave you, my hearers, to compare this mere sketch of crafts 
of ancient times with the crafts of this day, if any can be found. 

The second religion of crafts that I shall notice, is a religion established by 
the laws of men.... by the laws of kings, states, or nations... so as to compel men 
under certain penalties, whether agreeable to their conscience or not, to believ© 
and practice certain articles of faith, swear to support them, or be compelled by 
law to conform to a national form of worship, sacred rites, ceremonies, dues to 
priests, &c. Whether the majority or the minority have given their sanction to 
such a law, matters not; for to prove the validity of such a law of pains and 
penalties to make men conform to modes of worship, or be of one mind in mat- 
ters of religion, is not to be found in the New Testament, and is the resort of 
craft men to force their wealth from the pockets of their neighbors. Hence 
la\^ religion is one of the priests' craft for wealth; by them i1 has been perpetu- 
ated in the nations of the earth with cruelty, and is a bloody craft.. ..yea, tyhe 
blood of saints has never yet satisfied the greedy stomachs of these sort of blood 

The first established religion that strikes my mind, is that of Nebuchadnezzar 
the king of Babylon, who commanded all men under the pain and penalty of 
the fiery furnace, to fall down and worship the idol image he had set up in the 
plains of Dura. But there were. three men in his kingdom, Shadrach, Meshach, 
and Abednego, whose consciences would not let them do so, and who thought 
different from the king and the crowd of his subjects; though I am persuaded he. 
had not more loyal subjects in his kingdom, because one conscience subject is 
worth five purse subjects. Now is there any man in the world that will say this 
law was right? Will any man say that the king and his counsellors should dic- 
tate to the consciences of others? Will any man say the king shall prescribe 
the duty of the creature to his creator, and be judge of other men's consciences 
ig, matters of religion? Will any say that a man is to pay a fine, be imprisoned, 


have his goods confiscated, or be burned in a fiery furnace, because he cannot see 
out ofother peoples' eyes, or believe like others? How foolish, absurd and vain. 
The case of Daniel is one of the same sort.. .under penalty of the lions' den. If 
cuch men there be that will say yes, the whole narrative proves, by these exam- 
ples of God's interference for the deliverance of the oppressed consciences of 
his servants, that such a law established religion is wrong and contrary to the 
divine mind, unless it can be proved that the magistrate is a competent judge 
of religious truth. opinion falsified in these circumstances, and abundantly 
falsified by the rulers of all nations who have undertaken to establish law reli- 
gion.. so doing they mis^s the mark, and establish a craft, and support hypo- 
crisy, robbery, and bloody cruelty on the earth; and shew us very plainly that 
a man may oppose, and has a right to oppose, all law religion in matters of con- 
spience, and that God is on his side. But perhaps you will say they had a right 
to oppose, because the king required them to be idolators. I answer, that kings 
or states establishing any set form of worship, or prescribing limitation of con- 
science, is just the same; ~and that the conscientious may resist the authority of 
kings or states with a good conscience, and in so doing fi^ht the battle of God 
and contend for the inalienable rights of freemen against such usurpers of the 
dominion of God. For all statesmen who aid and abet in the establishment of 
any law religion are enemies of God and to the rights of freemen; and are lay- 
ing claim to the sovereignty of God, to dictate for God what shall be the homage 
paid by the creature to his creator; and thus make their own conscience the 
standard of others, and set up an image of their own making and compel others 
by law to bow thereto under pains and penalties always severe. Oh, cursed 
fraud! since all true religion must be a voluntary offering of the heart to the su- 
preme creator of the universe, to whom man is first bound in duty as his con- 
science may dictate to him. Then law religion only supports a craft of priests 
and tyrants on earth for gain, and the blood that has been shed under such laws 
has been innocent blood, and the law makers of religious establishments are wil- 
ful and premeditated murderers,, and are accessaries before the fact to the mur- 
ders committed. For if the fiery furnace had burnt those three men,. and the 
lions had eaten Daniel, would you not have said, innocent blood shed by usurp- 
ed powejf and unlawful right; for which I say, the king, by the law of justice 
af d the rights and equality of man, should have died as a murderer. I might 
name many more of the same sort, but must pass them by. 

We shall next notice the established Christian religion.. ..turned from its sim- 
plicity and virgin beauty into a craft. For three hundeed years, the religion of 
Jesus Christ stood and flourished without line aid of schools, laws, or help of 
kings or magistrates... and in spite of them all, and in opposition to all, bore down 
all before it, commending itself to the consciences of men during this time,as not 
being a craft of priests. But in the year 323, Constantine undertook to protect 
and defend the religion of Jesus Christ, and established it by law; enjoining the 
Christian sabbath, salaries to ministers, &c. And now we might suppose this 
established law religion was right and could do no harm.. ..for what harm could 
there be in compelling men' to do right by the laws of government. I say this 
law was wrong.... first, because there is not, nor. can be, such a thing as true re- 
ligion by compulsion; bat it is voluntary and of free will. Secondly, true reli- 
gion is the gift of God; and therefore, no man is to suffer in his person or goods, 
because he does not nor cannot possess this gift; hence law religion is altogether 
founded in self righteousness andcraft: Thirdly, because the religion of Jesus 
Christ disavows iti every page of it a dependence on the power, wisdom antf 
•wealth of this world for its support, and stood and flourished when all these 
opposed; and it cannot be the duty of statesmen to support that which disowns 


all «eed of support. Fourthly, an established religion opens'"* door to a craft, 
to corrupt men and of course a corrupt ministry, and thence a corrupt doctrine, 
corrupt ordinances, corrupt discipline, corrupt members, and corrupt prac- 
tices, &c. And hence from this one wrong step in establishing even the 
true religion by law, a door was opened for crafts men of many kinds; while 
as a judgment from God, in the first instance followed cruelly and blood, and 
crafts men arose by thousands, such as bishops, arch-bishops, patriarchs, ex- 
archs, metropolitans, suffragan^; popes, cardinals, monks, nuns, synods, coun- 
cils, anathemas, dungeons, gibbets, flames and death.. ..all for the glory of God 
and the good of the church. But take notice, there was a craft at the bottom of 
all these titles... .and thus the true religion became a religion of crafts men, from. 
the Pope to the monk, by weaving it with state policy, and was no longer 'he 
religion of Jesus Christ, because removed by crafts men from the pedestal on 
which he first set it. True religion is the greatest blessing on earth; but, when 
interwoven with state policy, the greatest curse and mother of cruelties. And 
how many times has the Pope called his craft men together, like Demetrius of 
old, and said sirs,, you know by these our crafts we have our wealth.. ..hence the 
Roman Catholic religion was a religion of crafts for gain, honor, power and state 
influence. Then as soon as even the true religion became established by law, it 
was no longer the religion of Jesus Christ, but a popish and a Demetrius priest 
craft. Oh, how crafty are priests to get money.. ..lawyers live by the folly of 
men, physicians by the diseases of men, but crafty priests live and roll in idle 
luxury on the vices of ignorant men, who submit to them to be their conscience 
keepers and pay them for a passport to heaven, when the king's highway is free 
for all that may choose to walk therein. 

We shall next notice the crafts of this law religion. And first the craft of 
titles has in part been given you above,, from the Pope to the monk; of which 
titles of craft the New Testament has no account in it as all may see that choose 
to examine. Secondly, the craft of gain, like Demetrius', was the craft of sell- 
ing to sinners indulgences in their lust at fixed prices by the laws of the Pope, 
and not by the laws of Jesus Christ; such as the following prices. ...for killing a 
father, 1 ducat 5 carlins; for the lewdness of a clerk, 36 tournois 3 ducats; for 
him that wants to keep a concubine, 21 tournois 5 ducats 9 carlins. Oh, devil- 
ish priest craft... .and further, these indulgences could not be granted to the poor, 
who had no money to buy their fleshly enjoyments. This was a priest craft 
contrary to reason, right, modesty, decency, chastity, honor, virtue, God, scrip- 
ture, peace, good breeding and good sense, yet thousands were duped by it, so 
that Friar Sampson sold and collected by this selling craft in Switzerland alone 
to the amount of 120,000 crowns; and if the like was done in all the countries 
over which the chief craftman presided, I shall say this was a gaining, fat craft good a craft as the chieftain in missionary craft of the present day. 

A third craft was to sell the pardon of past sins.. ..and this was a gainful craft, 
for as much as rich sinners would find it more easy to pay their monev than re- 
pent of their sins.. no doubt this was a gainful craft, like that of Demetrius, 
that brought much wealth to the craft men; or, like the soothsaying damsel to 
her master.... yet the Pope, like Demetrius, fearing that a poor Luther, like Paul 
at Ephesus, would endanger his craft, sent his detestable pardon sellers to cry 
aloud in almost every country the Pope's power to forgive sinners, and thus car- 
ried on his craft like the missionaries, by runners, and like them paid for servi- 
j ees, men of craft dividing the spoil. 

|, A fourth craft of popish priests was to pray souls out of purgatory.. ..they had, 
i so much for Tom, and so much for Dick, but the price always depended on the 
' pches of the decease^ or their relatives'; and this brought much gain to the craft 

men. But as for the poor, who had nothing to pay, or died insolvent, they 
might climb the wall of purgatory if they could, for no priests would help them 
out without money.. ..and it is much so now with the craft of missions; the mis- 
sionary will not preach to the heathen and many others, or help get these poor 
creatures out of hell, without money. What a likeness of getting souls out of 
purgatory by mone}', and the heathen out of hell by money.... I say priest craft... 
my hearers, what say you? 

Time would fail me to pursue the various crafts in the Romish church for ti- 
tles, purse and power... .be it sufficient to say, that even the establishment of the 
true religion by law, metamorphosed gospel ministers to state pensioners, cruel 
blood suckers, tyrannical craft men, and grandees on the laboring part of the 
community.... lit up fires to roast human flesh, made weeping widows and 
orphans, builded prisons, confiscated goods, and covered the fields of Europe in 
blood. Yea, how many millions of lives law religion has sacrificed to the demon 
of priest craft, can only be known when God the righteous judge shall make 
inquisition for blood. Then let the American States beware how they meddle 
with the most distant species of law religion, lest they again unchain these 
blood hounds, craft men by trade. 

We shall next notice the High Church of England, as a law established craft. 
This craft was founded by the amorous Henry VIII. of England, about the year 
1520.. ..a prince who for vices was not surpassed by any prince of his age. And 
because the Pope would not grant him a divorce from his wife, he renounced 
the old man of crafts, and was declared by the parliament and people of Eng- 
land supreme head on earth of the church of England... .hence you see king craft 
in the outset, and that was to get a new wife. Secondly, Henry put down more 
than a thousand popish religious houses, and seized on their property to the 
amount of one hundred and eighty-three thousand pounds yearly.... here you see 
craftagain for money. And thus he proceeded to fit up a new fashion of crafts; 
but as lonly intend a mere sketch of crafts, I shall proceed. ...From the best ac- 
counts I can recollect from history, there were many years ago 18,000 clergymen 
in England and Wales, of this law religious craft; and no doubt the craft men 
have greatly multiplied in number, since David Simpson left that cor- 
rupt establishment, and refused like an honest man any longer to practice the 
craft among them, and has given us a short account of it as follows.... there are 
twenty-six bishops whose annual craft is $40S,8S8 90;* when divided makes 
each craft man's share Si 5,726 50; such a fat craft as this is enough to make a 
Jew laugh. Well may these craft men ride in their carriages about the coun- 
try like kings, and hire others to preach for them; well may they be called 

*From the European Magazine of 18 17, Benedick's History of all religions, and other 
documents recently come into my possession, it appears that the annual income of the 
Bishops of England is as follows: 

Archbishop of Canterbury, $88,800 

Bishop of Durham, - - 94,560 

Bishop of York, - - - 6?, 160 

Bishop of Winchester, - - 79,920 

Bishop of Ely, - . - - 53,280 

Bishop of London, - - 39,960 

Bishop of Bath and Wells, - 22,200 

Bishop of Chichester, - - 17,700 
Bishop of Litchfield and Coventry, 22,200 

Bishcp of Worcester, 
Bishop of Hereford, 
Bishop of Bangor, 
Bishop of Oxford, 
Bishop of Asiph, 


Bishop of Lincoln, 
Bishop of Salisbury, 
Bishop of Norwich, 
Bishop of Carlisle, 
Bishop of St. David's, - 
Bishop of Rochester, 
Bishop of Exeter, 
Bishop of Peterborough, 
Bishop of Bristol, 
Bishop of Landaff*, 
Bishop of Gloucester, - 
Bishop of Chester, 













Total, per year, for 26 Bishops, $719,800' 


lords spiritual, support my lord John Bull in his tyranny, and sing and dance 
the tunes of Parliament for such plum puddings as these.... who would not turn 
the spit, roast the beef, swear to the liturgy, support the crown, and sell his con- 
science for such a fat craft as this, and go to hell if needs it must be in the bargain. 
There is a mighty gang of craft men besides priests in this establishment.. ..for 
there are 28 cathedrals, 26 deans, 60 arch-deacons, 554 prebends, canons, &c... 
besides these there are about 3000 in orders, 900 lay officers, singing men, organ- 
ists, &c....this band of craft men amounts to 36,000, and at that time the whole 
income of the craft was $6,666, 666 67.... so much for law craft, for laboring far- 
mers and mechanics to maintain by the sweat of their brows. All these 36,000 
craft men are of like occupation, and if called together what can't they do; they 
can and will keep the galling yoke of tithes, oppression and poverty upon the 
people of England; and the farmers and mechanics must maintain these 
men-made tyrants in luxury and pride, hellward. Don't think me harsh, 
for if you could hear the groans of the poor laborers of England and the cries of 
their wives and children for bread and clothes, you would be of another mind. 
Then lake care of your priests, for all of the same craft may be expected to sing 
and dance the same tune, and pull the same string for wealth by their several 
crafts, for they are all of the same gang. If a priest looks for gain from his re- 
ligion, he is a craft man and may call Demetrius brother. It is as plain as a, b, 
thai self-interest will bind the whole band of craft men together, from genera- 
tion to generation; and thus the people of England and Wales must expect to 
wear the yoke of oppression so long as theological schools keep going on. And 
this is one of the great curses of theological schools... to make craft men to ty- 
rannise, oppress, and suck the purses and the blood of men; for in all countries 
where these factories have been set going, priestcraft and oppression are reign- 
ing predominant, and will continue to do so until they are stopped; for no sect 
can exist without priests, so the more priests the more force, until they ride 
rough shod over the liberties of the people, and establish their craft of gain. 
And in my opinion, theological schools in multiplying ungodly priests are rap- 
idly hurrying Americans to the yoke of oppressed civil and religious liberty.,,, 
this is my rule to go by. ...same cause same effect is but sound philosophy. Oh, 
that I had a voice like thunder, I would speak to every American to stop, pause 
and think.. ..think what theological schools, priestly influence, and law religion 
have brought other nations to... .and when priestly influence once gets the yoke 
of tithes on your necks, their money and influence will hold it there....farewell, 
civil and religious liberty. ...labor, poor farmer.. ..toil, poor mechanic. riot in 
luxury blind guides. It appears to me very plainly, that the present movements 
of the priests are like a man breaking a yoke of oxen.. ..first to coax them gently 
....then the rope.... then coax, rub, feed and stroke... .then the yoke.. ..then gently 
the cart.. .then a light load. ...then as much as they can bear.. ..then more.. .galled 
pecks or not, go they must, or the whip they must have without mercy or com- 
passion. ' Just so are the priests doing. ...Oh, ye sons of libert) 7 , ye children of 
wild oxen independence, to rove where you please and graze on the pastures of 
happiness according to your own liking, they are coaxing, persuading, begging, 
and putting-on the yoke and cart, by large sums of money, theological and sun- 
day schools, combined with the press and priestly influence. .;. and I tel! you, 
these worms will cut the root of our independence, and if they get law on their 
side, they will load the cart with tithes to the galling of your hearts... .and you, 
must go, or pop goes the whip. 

If you will take the spy-glass of church history, you can see the effect of law 
religious craft.... see a Bunyan groaning in prison twelve years, and a Rogers led 
to the flames with a heart ready to burst with grief, and nine loving children 


weeping, wilh a wife following in anguish of soul to behold Iho funeral pile la 
burn their only stay and comfort of life.. .oh, dreadful sight! See the poor qua- 
Iters banished, whipped, imprisoned and hurtg, in New-England. Seethe bap- 
T list ministers in Virginia fined, imprisoned, and whipped like slaves.... all this 
and ten thousand times as much more, came by law-stimulating craft men. Oh, 
heavens! what a monster is a covetous priest when he can have law on his side 
to support his craft; he is without feeling, he can hear the cries of weeping wi- 
dows and children for bread, when he has the means of taking out of the 
world the kind father that might have given it to them, and yet his heart be set 
on wealth by his craft. Oh, hellish monster law-craft! never show your bloody 
garments in America, since revolutionary patriotism has driven you from our 
shores. Then, Americans, beware of law religion. ..beware of craft men in 
sheep's clothing.. ..beware of their calling all their craft men together, and mak- 
ing a dead set on Congress to establish their craft by law for gain. ...then for 
blood. Oh, let the tears of widows and children, the groans of prisoners, and 
the bloody beacons that stand on the coasts of other nations, warn Congress of 
any kind of law religion, no matter how foreign; or else step by step to ruin our 
highly favored country goes. Law religion never was any thing else but a 
craft of tyrants and priests for gain. ..Jesus Christ nor his apostles never did, nor 
never will, claim any kin with this metamorphosed imp of hell, I must desist, 
only observing that Ireland is paying £72,000 to 26 bhhops, besides thousands 
to other crafts; and from a late statement, the British people are paying their 
clergy $50,000,000 yearly; France, §7,000,000.... and Spain more;* ought not 
this to make Americans look out, and rise as one man in opposition to the first 
attempt of law religion, and look back with thankful hearts to God, and highly 
venerate the blood of our revolutionary fathers, that bursted such bands from 
the hands of us their children and on this memorable day established religious 
liberty in opposition to priestcraft and British tyranny. ...and I call on you, my 
audience, this day,never, no never, to part wilh liberty for less than it cost. ..the 
blood of the heart. 

The third religion that I shall notice as having been established in the wbrld ? 
is that of Mahomet, or Mahomed. ..who was a very extraordinary man, an Arab 
of Hejiar by birth, commenced telling his tales in the seventh century and thus 
began laying the foundation of his craft. Mahomet was beautiful in his person, 
with forward large and keen eyes, clear judgment, decisive in conduct, his wit 
easy and social, possesssed much natural acutenesss, and spoke fluently in the pu- 
rest language of Arabia. In solitary retirement in the cave of Mecca, Mahomet 
appears to have conceived the idea of his prophetical mission, or founding this 
new craft. And as I have said all religious crafts are founded on certain fabrica- 
ted tales, and not. on miracles like the religion of God, I must mention some of 
his tajes...he tells the world of his night journeys to heaven, his visions were 
very frequent he said with God and angels, and some of them wonderful, beatific, 
&c. Mahomet was the grandson of the most powerful family in Mecca, and 

♦Benedick, in his history of all religions, states the, income of the Clergy of all deno- 
minations in the world, at $78,813,840. France had before the revolution of 1787, about 
460,000 Clergy and craft men of different sorts of the law religion of Popery — and put- 
ting the population of Franee at that time at 24 or 25 millions, the Clergy were about 
or at least l-60th part of the inhabitants, and the revenue of the Clergy at that time 
was supposed to be 170,000,000 livres. In Spain, before the revolution, the Clergy and 
others of this law Catholic craft, amounted to 180,000 in numbers; while their real pro- 
perty in lands, buildings, &c. amounted to 186,000,000 of pounds, besides tithes, taxes, 
fees, and dues forthcoming^ otherwise — this property of the Clergy was put to sale afteti 
-the revolution, and was stated by the Cortes to amount to 140,000,000, to pay off 'the 
National debt— since that time the Clergy has been on the decline. 


cot much wealth by marriage. ..the first twelve years of his mission he had re-, 
course to persuasion to establish his craft; three years were silently employed m 
the conversion of fourteen proselytes; for ten years his craft advanced with a 
slow and painful progress within the walls of soon his first adhe- 
rents were let into the secret of his views of empire, is not easy to determine; 
but not to dwelL.has the religion of Mahomet the marks of craft upon »t? ¥es, 
my audience ..I have diligenllv compared ihe Alcoran with the New Testament 
and found perhaps not less than twenty places of forgery, where he borrowed 
the ideas from the New Testament, but changed the phraseology of the words; 
as well as acknowledged the name of Abraham, Noah, Jesus Christ, and others, 
to "loss over his craR and make it pass with these sons of Ishmael. And when 
he fled from Mecca to Medina the people received him, and it was here that 
this craft man with a naked sword in his hand and uplifted arm, commenced 
proclaiming to the whole world the great dogmas of his craft...that there was 
one God and that Mahomet was his prophet, and whoever refused to acknow- 
ledge him as such should be instantly put to death. This is a sword cratt....a 

craft too powerful to be resisted; and he soon compelled the whole country ot 
Arabia to join in with this craft, and then burst forth into the Roman territo- 
ries, and taught, them his Koran craft was not to be despised; and thus establish- 
ed this craft in Arabia, Asia, part of Africa. Spain, Sicily, and many European 
isles. Now for the marks of this craft... .first, by joining the craft they saved 

their lives; secondly, every soldier in this craft equally divided the spoils ot 
the conquered nations, after the reservation of one-fifth for charitable purposes; 
thirdly, lustful gratifications was another part of this craft, for the craft men were 
allowed a plurality of wives; and fourthly, they were assured that the sword ot 
Mahomet was the key of heaven and of hell... a drop of blood shed in the cause 
of God, a night spent in arms, is of more avail than two months of fasting and 
prayer.. .whoever falls in battle his sins are forgiven at the day of judgment, his 
'wounds shall be as resplendent as vermilion and odoriferous as musk, and the 
loss of his limbs shall be supplied by the wings of angels and cherubim. Ano- 
ther part of his craft was his voluptuous paradise, his robes of silk, his palaces 
of marble, his groves and shades... but above all, his seventy-two virgins assign- 
ed to each of the faithful, of resplendent beauty and eternal youth, were enough 
to intoxicate the imaginations and seize the passions and make crait men by 
thousands. Much more might be said, but surely here is enough to convmce 
any man, that this is a religion of crafts, though established by the sword, and 
of course a religion of blood. ...... .u u • 

The fourth religion I shall notice as having been established in the world, is 
the Missionary establishment....and will examine that for the marks of crait. i 

It is abundantly harped upon that Jesus Christ and his apostles were all mis-' 
sionaries...that is agreed to as to words or office, but here lies the great matter in 
dispute.. .were they craft men? did they make gain by godliness? did they make 
a craft of their religion, like modern missionaries? I hope to shew presently 
from the New Testament they did not. The first moneyed Missionary Society 
that ever was established in the world, as I can find on the pages of history, was 
established in the year 1622, by Pope Gregory XV. (for the New Testament 
knows nothing of money established religion) and then called the Congregation 
for Propagation of the Faith. It had, like our modern missions, an incre- 
dible number of donors, rich and emulous to excel in the greatest gifts, as well 
as being greatly enriched by Urban VIII. And by this Congregation s money 
a vast number of missionaries were sent to the remotest parts of the world, 
among the most barbarous nations, and in India, China and Japan. Thousands 
were won over by the artful and industrious Jesuits and monks to embrace the 


Catholic faith. But this b'oasted missionary career Was of short duration, for 
these missionary craft men soon began to meddle with political affairs, like some 
of modern time, and were by the jealous rulers of those countries expelled from 
their dominions; and thousands of their converts were put to the sword, and the 
rest returned to paganism; and thus ended the first moneyed missionary entej- 
prize. Now was there any craft in this mission? Surely. ..for it is well authen- 
ticated from history, that the Pope was often generalissimo of the armies, and 
often gave battle in person to the enemies of the Catholic faith; and of course 
the more territory the more soldiers, the more soldiers the more power, as well 
as the more room for the sale of pardons and indulgences; and the more sale the 
more wealth to the craft, while the great object was to grasp at the reins of go^ 
vernment, which the jealous rulers caught them at in nick of lime to save their 
country from the hands of such tyrants, whose masters often sent these purse 
plunderers to force the heathen into the belief of Christianity, and baptise na- 
tions at the point of the sword to enrich the See of Rome, or bring wealth to 
the craft men. 

The sect of Christians called Moravians, founded the second mission about one 
hundred years ago. The third missionary establishment was formed about 
twenty or thirty years ago in London, called the Evangelical Society. The 
fourth, called the Baptisl Missionary Society, in England. And lastly, the 
Baptist Missionary Society in America.. ..with others of like occupation. All of 
which are founded on beggars and money, like that of Pope Gregory's. These 
are all important establishments of the craft kind, (for their like cannot be found 
in the New Testament,) the bases of which are money, honor, and titles.. ..the 
love of which (money) is the root of all evil, to clergymen as well as others.... 
has been. ..and will be; and when sanctioned by law for priests to obtain it, 
the curse of nations. 

Now all these established societies of the craft kind have, by the money given 
to agents, running beggars, subscription bearers, &c. been wonderfully prolific 
throughout the several States, as well as other countries, in begetting daughters 
whom I shall call auxiliary societies to the craft. Now I ask you candidly, 
my hearers, to put your hand on your breast and say, whether you do or do not 
believe that money has been the main spring, the chief stimulus in all this migh- 
ty doing, and not God but men by money are doing this. Some no doubt are 
giving from what they conceive the purest motives, while others are filling their 
pockets out of their weakness. ...and the givers to theological schools and other 
societies I say, according to my best information and judgment at fifty years 
old, are sowing the hemp that will make the ropes to hang their children.. .for all 
hands but trie honest givers, it seems to me, shew the same length of foot.... 
craft. ...from the priest to the printer. 

But as I am limited to a mere sketch, I shall begin with the Baptist Mission- 
ary Society, founded in England. Ln the year 17S4, at an Association held at 
Nottingham, England, it was agreed to set apart an hour of prayer the first 
Monday evening in every month, for a revival of religion and the extension of 
Christ's kingdom in the world... so far plausible. Now who were at the head, 
plan, or seem to have had the chief management of this society? Why, John 
Ryland, Reynold Hogg, William Gary, John Sutcliff, and Andrew Ful- 
ler. Were they priests? Surely for do you not know that the priests were, 

are, and must be, at the head of all the schemes of the day. And Mr. Cary 
was one of the committee and help form the plan that has got him along, accor- 
ding to the best accounts I can get, to $6,000 a year; a good business indeed for 
a preacher.. ..neither the prophets, John the Baptist, nor Christ nor his apostles, 
ever sheared such a loaf as this. Mr. Kobertson and wife were allowed $840 


per year, and Mr. Chaler and wife and two children were allowed $960 a year 
lor missionary services. Now, my hearers, say whether you think either of 
these men would have left the British shore, if it had so turned out thf-re had 
been no money. I think not. Then if they could not go without money, but 
you must add that before they can go, 1 should say money turns the point.... and 
on this pivot turns all the societies of the day, in my opinion. You find no 
money in Jesus' going to Nineveh, nor in Paul's voyages to the heathen, nor 
in Christ's crossing the sea of Gallilee to preach the gospel.... no money is beg- 
ged, no society is formed, nor salary is allowed them for scouring the seas and 
preaching the gospel to the heathen. ...but although these things cannot be found 
in the New Testament, they are said to be right; but if they are, in my opinion, 
it is only so to support priestcraft in the earth and live on the labor of other people. 
We next, my audience, shall notice the American missionary craft. And for 
goodness' sake, how came this craft to find its wa)' to the land of steady habits, 
the land of liberty? I tell you, it was the priests' doings. ...for you know the 
American tailors cut their cloth after British fashions, and the whole train foU 
lows the higher orders of society. ..and why should not the priests of America 
form their plans of money getting, and adopt British fashionable crafts, since 
they are men of like occupation? Then the truth of the case is just this... .the 
northern priests, many of whom are salary men, hearing of the fashion of mis- 
sions adopted in England, called together men of like occupation and when as- 
sembled they hatch this missionary egg, which has since filled the States with 
a peace-disturbing brood of crafts, without thus saith the Lord for their proceed- 
ing. But, fellow citizens, lest I should weary you with no doubt what some 
will call nonsense, or as they have done, political harangues, I shall proceed to 
examine for the constant, united, scriptural marks of a false religion and false 
priests... that is, whether the American mission has the mark of craft. These 
northern priests soon in their pamphlets, letters, and papers, let the scattered 
priests know their design, and a great many fell into their views, some no doubt 
from one cause and some from another; but take it by the lump, the priests are 
the cause of all this, whether the craft is right or wrong, for that they led oth- 
ers into it must be acknowledged; but from what motive they have ben actua- 
ted, is the main point in question... .and as we cannot search their hearts, we 
must try them by their actions, for actions speak louder and more truth than 
words, pamphlets, or missionary newspapers, since by their fruit ye shall know 
them. And first, as regards theological schools... who but the priests con- 
ceived the scheme and devised the plan and set them going, through their influr 
ence on society? You must know this is the truth. Is there any craft in them? 
1 should say there is nothing else but craft. The religion of Jesus Christ stood 
and flourished for three hundred years, not only without their aid, but in oppo- 
sition to them; and how else should it be, since salvation is by grace, and the 
gospel the power of God and the wisdom of God, and the world by wisdom 
know not God....and I defy any man to prove that theological schools were ever 
made an auxiliary to Christianity, until it became an established priestcraft..,, 
and since those days it has been necessary, my audience, to have them, to sup- 
port priestcraft; but when Christianity shone in her virgin beauty it was not 
so.* Do you not think the teachers of theology were thinking, when those, 

♦When the Ark of God was jn the hands of the Philistines it was a curse to the na- 
tion, because out of the hands of the priests of God's choice and appointment — so even 
so in all countries, when the gospel and Christ's cause gets in the hands and is managed 
by the men of this world, and priests not chosen and qualified by God to bear the mes- 
sage of salvation — a curse, a great curse. Why then shall not America feel the curse 
iroxa the same cause? 


plans were formed, I am the man that will be chosen, and $2500 will be a band- 
some craft, besides the honor attached to the office? Do you not think that 
those young men who go thither, have in view the craft of getting a salary, the 
more of the gentleman, a rich wife, the honor of being called the learned, the 
greater preacher, and living without work? But I am sorry to say some of them 
are not ashamed to beg, and thus disgrace the ministerial office... .when all the 
moneyed affairs of the Christian community, by the New Testament, belongs to 
the office of deacon. 

Secondly, as to missions. We find in black and while that the Board of the 
North-Carolina Baptist Society for foreign and domestic missions, ordered that 
their agent should be paid $540 for services, being at the rate of $40 per month; 
and to others who were not so proficient in the art, SX per day for their services 
as missionaries. What were their gain or loss I know not.. ..but one thing I 
know, they have broke the peace and harmony of the churches of North-Caroli- 
na; and I think that money, and not the souls of men was the cause... for out of 
the fund of the society, which was $20S8 72^, they divided $1S52 2\h. if they 
got what the Board ordered them for services. Now I ask you seriously, my 
audience, as some of you are Bible readers, whether such forming societies, 
begging, funding, and dividing the spoil, is a craft or not; and whether the first 
Christians practiced any craft like this; or whether such conduct is found among 
Christ and his apostles? It has always appeared to me, that when I see a min-i 
ister, after preaching a missionary moneyed sermon come down out- of the pul-j 
pit, singing and shaking hands to whet up the passions and press upon young: 
ladies to form a missionary society and give their money, that the preaching, 
the singing, and the shaking of hands of tie minister, were but the craft of the 
preacher to have access to the purse; and it would be in my mind, these are they 
that creep into houses and lead captive silly women laden with divers sms, &c. 
(Paul). ...and also when I have seen the missionary preacher stretch every nerve 
of eloquence, and bear hard on every pathetic string to affect his audience in fa- 
vor of missions, I never could help saying craft in the preacher, to catch money 
and not souls. And when I have seen a parcel of priests assembled to devise 
plans to get money to convert the heathen, (for I have set in missionary board) 
I have been astonished to see that they by the by would get part as it was pass- 
ing; and that they should form the plan and so turn the wheel as to bring them 
out the prize, I was forced to think there is craft somewhere. ...and the same 
Board ordered that my humble secretary should be paid $15 for his services.... 
shall I say craft or not. And I ask what has become of the $1799, left in this 
fund the last time that the Board met, as I know of? For it has been rumored 
that $G00of it has gone to bu} T western country land, and the rest it is supposed 
has taken French leave. Now does one instance appear, my hearers, in the New 
Testament, of a prophet, or Christ, or his apostles, ever being hired to preach, 
to beg, or to form societies to make money? You know there is not such a pre- 
cedent in the word of God. Then I must say preaching, begging, and forming 
of societies, is a craft to get money, set in operation by priest?, and carried on 
by... .you comb my head and 1 will scratch your elbow. But what is the worst 
of all, the conversion of sinners which is the work of God. must be lugged into 
this craft to make it current with the public. You beg for me and I will pay 
you for your services. And what has become of the $25,000 begged out of 
Congress for the ministerial factor}'. give away which Congress had no right, 
for it was the nation's money and they ought to have applied it to national use, 
and not sectarian individual benefit. And I would further ask you, my audi- 
ence, if any of you know to what use the missionaries implied that $16,000 it is 
said they got from the Indians that was due from the United Slates for these 


poor creatures' land, and how Congress paid it? Why what will not a priest do? 
even beg and then divide, and perhaps the last cent of negro, \vidow, children, 
or Indian.. ..for what differs this craft from that of Demetrius, in getting wealth 
out of negro or Indian, goat or sheep, so wealth is coming? And what differs 
the selling of membership into missionary societies and bible societies, from $2 
to $50 for membership, from the sale of pardons, indulgences, or silver shrines 
by Demetrius? I see none.... or at least, I think, my hearers, they are all crafts, 
and equally craft men's different trades for wealth. ..what say you? 

But time would fail me to tell of the barefaced conduct of craft men, 
imposed on the public under the color of the say so of Jesus Christ.... be it 
sufficient to say, when you see a missionary box on the frontispiece, or on board 
of a steamboat, say to yourself, oh, cunning, crafty priest, you shall not befool 
me, for here stands an evidence of your craft; when you see a board -of mission- 
aries, met to devise plans for the conversion of sinners, tie your purse fast, if you 
do not, craft men are so crafty that by some hook or crook they will get into it; 
when you see a subscription runner, say craft man. ..take care you are not begged 
out of countenance; when you see a young man hunting about from town to 
town, in boots and sacred black, for a place to preach for hire, say craft man; 
when you see and hear a man preach, go ye into all the world and preach mo- 
ney to every creature, say craft man; when you see a publication to call craft 
men together, be sure of some new devised craft for wealth, or they think their 
craft is in danger; when you see and hear a man preach the poor heathen, the 
destitute, and instead of the gospel the wonderful works of missionaries, and oh 
come, both goats and sheep, cast your money into the treasury, blasphemously 
called the Lord's, be sure that man is paid in some way for his services, and is 
at his craft; when you see a bag hanging at the meeting-house door, full of old 
rags, say paper priestcraft; when you hear a missionary promise to send a par- 
cel of ladies a preacher, if they will give their money, and get their money and 
away, say craft.... and indeed it seems to me, that this system of religion is no- 
thing else but crafi, from the priest to the printer, for to get their wealth like 
Pemetrius of old, since they can sell images of northern priests and member-? 
ships in various societies, to support their craft. And what shall I say of the titles 
annexed 10 missions.. .are they not intended as a craft to catch men and women 
for wealth? such as, his highness, president, vice-president, director, directress, 
corresponding and recording secretary, treasurer, D. D...L. L. D....A. M. &c. 
are not these good bait to catch flies? of which titles the first christians speak 
not a word of their being among them.. .for all these crafts have arisen since, of ' 
which the devil must keep his register, for the New Testament keeps none. 
Then is it any wonder that some men pour forth in strains of eloquence, like the 
town clerk, which of you knoweth not that the high-minded baptists, and rich 
men, and great and honorable men, and my lord governor, and judges, lawyers, 
and chief captains have bought membership into missionary and bible societies, 
and are worshippers of the great goddess of missions.. .and keep the churches 
and people of the United States in an uproar, like the city of the Ephesians by 
the craft of Demetrius and his gang, because a few like Paul oppose them. Thus 
the cr) T to Congress, help to maintain the sanctity of the Sabbath. ...and hence, oh 
ye sons of liberty, look abroad and behold these men of like occupation in eve- 
ry State, and almost in every county, actively engaged and concentrating their 
force to a point, and at the same time attacking one of the most v.aluable insti- 
tutions of our country, that of the transportation of Ihe mail. I call on you, fel- 
low citizens, to arise like Sampsons, in defence of religious liberty, and burst 
those priestly withes, and carry away web, beam and all. ..and not sleep in De- 
lilah's lap until the yoke is on your necks and your Iocks^shorn by vigilant 


priests and acts of Congress, and your children grind in the prison house of civil 
and religious tyranny. 

We preach not ourselves but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your ser- 
vants for Jesus' sake, is the language of a Paul. ..but the language of missiona- 
ries seems to me should read thus: ourselves your servants for money's sake. 

And what shall I say of tract, sunday school, temperance, and bible societies, 
&c. Are they not of the same sort? wsre not the priests the inventors? dp 
they not use all their influence, like Demetrius, to keep up a trade in these things, 
as he did by selling shrines? do they not roar out in their papers, like him, 
against all that oppse, our craft is in danger? I understood these bibles were 
to be given away, as the effect of the money given by donors to the society, but 
is it so? is not the society selling them at any price they can get? are not the 
bible distributors making a craft of it at $40 per month? are not the printers 
making a craft of it like other printers? are not the venders of these bibles ma- 
king a craft of it like other book sellers? And are they not, by reason of this 
money given to the society, forcing other printers out of employ and amassing 
the printing of the bible to themselves as a religious craft? And where is the 
$25,000 of stock that it is said the society has taken in the institutions of the 
north? And who does that money belong to? the givers.. indeed, for ihey 
have neither bond nor assurance how this money is to be disposed of, but just 
as the society may choose. And is this society incorporated? I understand not. 
Well then, suppose they betray trust, how then? Why it can only go as some 
others have gone... a hint to the wise is enough. But the distribution of bibles 
has been going on sometime, what has been the effect on society in general? 
Why from all I can see and hear, society is worse in its morals than when I 
could first remember.. ..more pride, more dress, less confidence between men, 
more failures, suicides, murders, than there were thirty-five years ago. The 
Bible is the best of books, but how many thousands have lived and died in sin 
with one in their house lor forty years; and how many thousands have been 
hopefully converted to God that never owned a Bible, nor read a word in one? 
Yea, my observation tells me, of this sort is the greater number of professors of 
religion. In a word, when I see men trading and trafficking in religious mat- 
ters, it smells to me rank of priestcraft. ...and the giving money enables the so- 
ciety to sell them for less than others, then look out for this trade to become 
wholly in the end the traffic of the priests... .and are they the most to be entrusted 
with the Bible? no, my audience, whenever it shall so fall out that any one sect 
has the trust, and disposal of the Bible, look out for corruption of the sacred 
text.... for I have seen some instances already. 

Much is said about the Temperance Society.... but if I am rightly informed 
those who join are not to drink one drop.. ..if so, it has a wrong name, for it 
ought to be called the Abstaining Society. Does such a society agree with 
scripture? Drink no longer water, says Paul to Timothy, but use a little wine... 
and of deacons he saith, not given to much wine.. ..and the Saviour drank wine. 
And because some men make a storehouse of their belly, I must eat none.. ..and 
because some men have burnt up their kettles, I must not hang mine on the fire 
....and because some men have been killed by medicine, I must not use it pru- 
dently. What sophistry of priests? And because some men eat so much as to 
make them sick, I must not eat enough to keep me alive.. ..and because some 
men eat too much meat and bread, I must not make meat and bread nor trade in 
these articles.. .and because some men make a beast of their belly and get drunk,. 
I must not make fruit brandy, still it, or trade in this article. The scripture 
Is not against drinking, but against drinking too much, or drunkenness; for the 
mpsaic priest was permitted to drink wine, but not when he was going to offici- 


ate. And Paul saith, every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be reftf* 
sed, for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer; and let your moderation 
be known to all men. And it is the right way to make drunkards, to keep so- 
ber all day and be drunk all night... the worst sort of greedy drunkards are 
these, priests not excepted. Don't mistake.. ..set things right... for this society 
puts me in mind of Paul's prophecy, who said some should arise that would for- 
bid to marry and abstain from meats which God had created to be received. ..and 
that was priestcraft under the Romish church, none can deny... .and this being 
so nigh a kin to it, I think this is modern priestcraft., that has a form of godli- 
ness, to a better craft out of present sight. I shall then take my grog, wine, or 
what not, when I please, nor will I debar myself the privilege and pleasure of 
asking my friends or enemies to do so; and let such over-zealous, self-righteous 
craft men help themselves if they can. ...for it is like the pharisees of old, great 
pretence outside, but the craft was to devour some widow's house. Cry aloud, 
ye priests, and spare not, against drunkenness; but let moderation alone, lest 
you jump as far in the ditch on the other side. 

And as regards Tract Societies and Sunday School Unions, they tore about 
the worst of the whole gang, for they are also the inventions of the priests, and 
contain craft for printers, and they should cry out as well as the priests, our craft 
is in danger, for you know bv this our printing tracts we have our wealth... .and 
the writers should cry out, since premiums are offered for the best 1ract on such 
a subject.. .and the traders in tracts also may cry out... but the worst of all the 
effects, is the sectarian principles infused in the minds of youth; for it is but 
reasonable to suppose that the writers will squint an eye to their party, and give 
that turn to them that will mostly establish and enhance their sect. And will 
not Sunday School Unions force out of schools all books but those approved by 
the priests and then* party, and bend the twig to incline to their point, and thus 
pave the way to the desired end.. ..and this party in the end monopolise books, 
schools, sentiments, men and power, and the end of all crafts, money? Besides/ 
it is a great convenience as well as advantage to get the people formed into va- 
rious societies, because they are much easier governed; and much more easily 
brought to bear at any wanted point, and at a given time, because it increases 
the greater number of actual controlers in lesser bands... hence, see what an easy 
matter to bring all the priests at a given time and to a focus in the several States 
in their petitions to Congress for stopping the mail.. ..what an easy matter it is for 
them to collect money, when they have got men and women thus craftily form- 
ed into societies.. ..this was a grand piece of priestcraft. Now having them thus 
formed, it is but say, and receive without much trouble. ...well they might pay 
runners to go about and form societies, because they can now stay at home and 
money is pouring in to the craft; for some of these societies, if I am informed 
right, pay annually, after having purchased a shrine of the craft men of mem- 
bership into Bible and other societies. I tell you, my audience, that it is my 
candid opinion, that this society craft will enslave our country. In a word, all 
these chief societies make use of employed runners as sponges to suck up the 
riches of a tour, and squeeze it and then send them off in another direction to 
be filled again. I repeat it, these societies of every sort manifest a wonderful 
love of money, for they embrace every method of procuring it, even to old 
rags; and thus they sponge and squeeze, and never say enough. It does appear 
to me, my audience, that the greater part of the religion of these days is a craft, 
a religion of trade and speculation, from the priest to the printer; and has been 
established in public opinion without a proper comparison with the religion of 
Jesus Christ) and that the priests have devised the plans of all these things to 
hajidle mosey; and after devising the j) lairs, then hire others, to carry them frj- 


to execution, and pay them for their services; thus by the influence of the priests 1 
and money, great things have been done, it is said. But I am such an unbelie- 1 
ver of these priestly tales, 1 must say, like Jesus said in his day to such craft | 
men.. .you compass sea and land to make a proselyte, and when you have made 
him he is but two-fold more the child of hell than yourselves. For, by plans of 
priests, by hired beggars, by subscription runners of those priests they thought 
had the most influence and could work most on the passions of men to get mo- 
ney, was this religion begun, continued, and carried on, and not by God's spirit, I 
And secondly, the publication of donors' names has been a great means to esta- j 
blish this religion of missions, since thousands of men will buy honor with mo- 
ney. Thirdly, the great concern that some priests seem to have for the desti- j 
lute and the heathen, while the end of the row was money in their own pockets, j 
But most of all those who have gone the furthest and done the most to establish j 
this missionary religion, are the givers to those various societies, to make 
shrines for the goddess of missions; for no customers no trade by Demetrius and 
his crafty gang; equally so, no giving no runners, no subscription bearers, no j 
craft men of course, and the goddess of missions and her magnificence are soon 
destroyed. Thus this religion of crafts, with the whole train of missions, bible 
and tract societies, theological and Sunday schools, have their men and I think 
may properly be called craft men, employed every man looking for gain from 
his quarter. And I think, my audience, when all these craft men are called to- 
gether with money and influence on the people, they can do wonders in the U- | 
nited States.... all moving in harmony at the same juncture of time and to the 
same point. I tell you, my hearers, as a faithful watchman on the walls of Zion, j 
our civil and religious liberty is in danger, in my opinion; and the magnificence 
of our republic in great danger of being destroyed by these designing * * — up, 
each one of you, and be doing his part, for there is no timcfor you to sleep on j 
your oars, or else backwards we go by the adverse winds of priestcraft to the 
chains of priestly tyranny as in the days of Britain.. ..and don't forget, for hea- 
ven's and your children's sake, that the price of liberty is blood. A thousand 
times more might be said on the schemes of the day, but I must desist at pre- 
sent, only observing that there are ways to avert this storm and save your coun- 
try and liberty to your children, and perhaps children's children, or I think our 
country is gone. ..first, don't give one cent to any of these societies; but what 
you have to give, give to the poor and the needy, the fatherless and widow, and 
their souls will bless you, and you will be acting according to scripture, and 
shall be blessed in thedeed; for without money craft men or these societies can- 
not exist. Secondly, discountenance every man travelling under the patronage 
or to promote any of these societies, being sure he is a craft man, and not even 
honor him with a hearing as money is his design... which I for many years have 
determined not to do, as I regard such as laying a foundation that may hereafter 
overturn our happy republic. Thirdly, I say to save your country, you should 
not support any man for public office in the States, that is a member of, or that 
is in favor of the societies of the day, lest any bill supporting priestcraft should 
come before the State or National Legislature, and there meet with priest-made 
friends to rivet the yoke on your necks.. ..for as the people are now sovereign of 
the States, for God's sake hold on and don't let the priests have the sovereignty; 
if you do, nothing but money will not do, for then blood and slavery must be 
added to these craft men.. ..for of all the men in the world 1 dread the tyranny of 
an unconverted, men-made, money-coveting priest; I had rather be under the 
government of a deist, an atheist, or a Turk, than such hell arid men-made ty- 
rants as these money-hunting craft men, who have stimulated the magistrates of 
Ihe world to fill the earth with blood and cruelly. And the American uncoiW 


verted factoried priests are no better; all that is wanting is law on their side, and 
then for dungeons, gibbets, flames, fine and forfeiture, whips and confiscation of 
goods and banishment... and for heaven's sake, my countrymen, never come 
even to a toleration fight until you die, yea die by the pole of American liberty 
and under the banner of a waving eagle, rather than ask of the magistrate how 
you shall worship your God... .for such a favor is not to be asked by the citizen, 
nor granted by the creature of human power, but is the right of all men. 

Fifthly and lastty, I come to notice the religion of Jesus Christ, as having 
been established in the world, and examine that in a short way for crafts. Je- 
sus Christ, the founder of this holy, humble, self-denying, world-loosing, and 
God-depending religion, was born, according to the best accounts on the 25th 
day of December, in the year of the world 4004, in a stable in a town called 
Bethlehem, in the land ofJudea, but of poor parentage yet of royal extraction, 
from the family of David king of Israel. And he must have been the same per- 
son of whom the prophet Isaiah speaks. ...that a virgin should be with child and 
bring forth a son and call his name Emanuel, (God with us,) when compared 
with the conception and birth of Jesus as given by the Evangelist... for mark, he 
does not say a woman shall be with child, for thousands had been and were in his 
day and had brought forth their sons. ...but, my hearers, the prophet here has a 
clear view of God's method of providing the world with a Saviour..,. a virgin 
shall be with child, (that is, a woman that never knew a man).. .a miracle indeed, 
and such an one as infidels snuff" the nose at; yet compared with Paul's saying, 
(made of a woman,) and with the declaration of the angel, thou shalt conceive 
and bring forth a son, &c. will be found to exactly agree. And whoever will 
be at the pains to carefully examine and compare the various prophecies in their 
most minute and circumstantial details, with the New Testament, as regards the 
birth, life, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ, must be struck 
with the accurate fulfilment of prophecy in the person of Christ Jesus; and it 
cannot be applied to any other character or any other man of whom history in- 
forms us.... as well as the spread of his doctrine, increase of followers, &c. For 
the novel circumstance of a virgin being with child by the Holy Ghost, a case 
I never heard of but this, nor read of in the pages of history.. .his character by 
the prophet, God with us, which could not have been any other way but as de- 
scribed by Gabriel. ..Joseph's dream.. .his star in the east.... the coming of the 
wise men to Jerusalem.. .their inquiry in the courts of Herod, for him that was 
born King of the Jews... the consulting of the prophecies to find where, and 
finding as they s<»id....the star going before and standing over where the young 
child was.. ..the proclamation of the angels to the shepherds; their directions 
where lo find him, and the signs, swadling bands and laying in a manger.. .the 
heavenly hosts singing the exact ditty of the life-effects of the gospel on the 
souls of sinners, by the life and death of this man.... the prophecies of Simeon 
and Anna.. ..the death of the Hebrew children by the sword of Herod. ..his going 
to Egypt, his return to Nazareth, &c. is such a combination of uncommon, evi- 
dential circumstances to prove the extraordinary personage of this man Christ 
Jesus, that cannot by one-fifth part be found lo prove any other historical fact 
oo earth. ..for the birth of Julius or Augustus Caesar, Solomon, David, Wash- 
ington, or Bonaparte, has not the twentieth part of evidences for their birth, 
and the manner bow and where, and their character that should follow and 
was fulfilled in the presence of eye witnesses, as well as prophecies going be- 
fore accomplished. And as for the character of his life, where and how he liv-> 
ed, the doctrine he taught, the suffering and reproaches he underwent, the mira- 
ales he wrought, the cures he effected, the goodness of his conduct and disposi- 
tion, his readiness to help the distressed without money, the manner of his 


death, the followers he had and their sufferings and disinterested character and 
world-loosing behavior and labor to support themselves, are as well and better 
founded than many other historical facts that are universally received.. ..having 
the testimony of sacred and profane history, of cotemporary historians, of friends 
and of enemies, of angels and of God, of eye and ear witnesses, of miracles, and 
of a virtuous and suffering and disinterested life.... with the addition of a system 
of morality whose evidences is such, that shows that the system must have ema- 
nated from the Deity, because it breathes the very spirit of the general dealing 
of God in the government of the world; breathing nothing else but peace, love, 
good will and kindness from God to man, and from man to man; and not blood 
and cruelty like priestcraft has in most of the nations of the earth for gain to 
priests. And I cannot see why I should not as fully believe in all Jesus did 
and taught, as what Cicero, Pliny, Virgil, Homer, or Josephus did and taught, 
whose writings have come down to us.... and more so, because Christ is not the 
writer of his own history, but the united history of four men who were eye wit- 
nesses of the facts, who suffered hardships, faced dangers, suffered loss and died 
in defence of what they taught and wrote... which, though they somewhat disa- 
gree in their history, yet that disagreement is but the better proof of the autho- 
rity of their several accounts of his transactions, for the only difference is in 
mode of expression, and omissions and additions, and shews plainly they did 
not copy one from another, and that no four men on earth could have compiled 
a fabulous history to have agreed in so many particulars, but must have been eye 
witnesses of the facts recorded. ...for if false, they being cotemporary must have 
known it; if true, surely it is to be expected there would be some difference in 
the relation of facts. On the publication of the life of Christ we find no histo- 
ries, either sacred or profane, daring to dispute the facts, for these things were 
loo notorious among both Jews and Gentiles, in town and country, to be dispu- 
ted.... and if they did dispute, miracles were wrought in confirmation of these 
truths, to the stopping the mouths of said the Jewish magistrates, 
a notable miracle has been done by these men and we cannot deny it. ...and God 
bearing the apostles witness with divers signs and wonders and gifts of the Ho- 
ly Ghost, stopped the mouths of gainsayers; while their clothing, manner of 
fare, reception in town and country, as well as general and daily conduct, prov- 
ed they were not craft men in woolen blue. 

This poor Jew, Jesus by name, commenced his ministry in the land of Judea 
without education; which should prove to us his religion is not a religion of ed- 
ucation. ..without wealth, then his religion is not a religion of wealth. ...without 
missionary society funds, without the aid of the rich priests, scribes, pharisees, 
or rulers of the Jews. ...without the aid of the schools, or the patronage of law, 
kings, or statesmen... nor with sword, like Mahomet.. .or law, or fear of prisons, 
fires, gibbets, banishments, confiscation of goods, or death, like the Pope, or 
. High Churcn of England... nor as the craft men of heathen gods and goddesses, 
with persecution jfaPaul for fear of the danger of losing the sale of silver 
shrines. ..But, in that low, humble, reasoning, persuasive, gentle and peaceable 
disposition of the gospel spirit, that breathes peace on earth, good will towards 
iri3n or even to enemies, like God in his providence sending rain on the just and 
unjust, giving hfe» health and blessing to all. And thus commenced establish- 
ing Christianity, upon conduct and principles as foreign to priestcraft as north is 
to south; for proof of which, 1 beg you to read the New Testament.. ..for the re- 
ligion of Jesus Christ has neither monej', learning, honor, titles, nor wealth for 
its support, and of course there is nothing to make a craft of... *o Christ's reli- 

fion is not a religion of craft, but ungodly priests have often made a craft of it. 
'or the sublimity and morality of the doctrine of Christ carried conviction to 


the hearts of enemies, of their righlness and fitness to benefit men here and here- 
after, as well as the peace and good of society; and not like priestcraft, that 
spreads uproar and confusion in cities, and cruelty and desolation in nations.. .for 
although these things followed wherever the religion of Jesus came, it was not 
the effects nor the disposition of the religion of Jesus Christ that done it.. .but was 
because the religion of Jesus Christ upset to the very foundation all craft in reli- 
gion, for it admits it not. Thus when the Romish priests introduced their 
priestcraft, blood flowed in torrents, because there were some men on earth of 
the religion of Jesus that protested against the introduction of this new craft of 
Popes afld priests trading in religion. Equally so when the High Church of 
England by her priests, king, and parliament introduced their law priestcraft... 
there were some in that country that did possess this disinterested, world-loosing 
religion of Jesus Christ; arid protesting against it, prisons and flames were their 
lot... .this did not flow from the religion of Jesus Christ, but from the craft men 
like Demetrius, who was afraid of the loss of his wealth by his craft. Just so 
now in our times, the introduction of missionary crafts has made a terrible hub- 
bub in towns, country and church, and missionaries say it is the opposers that 
have done it.... I say, with the independence of that liberty of conscience bought 
with blood, they are false charges of those that fear for their craft. ..for the case 
is the same, there are yet some men on earth that possess the religion of the 
humble Jesus, and preach for Jesus' sake and not for money's sake, and whose 
daily conduct proves they are not craft men.. . and those that roar out, infidel, igno- 
rant, weak, fools, or it is for want of sense, such fellows as these are men of craft; 
and nothing is wanting but law on their side, and then like Demetrius, Popes, 
priests of England and America, for prisons, flames and hanging, and roaring 
out our craft is in danger, kill these heretics and do God and the world ser- 
vice. Now to convince any man that such cruel, bloody craft men do not pos- 
sess the spirit of Christ or his doctrines, listen to specimens of his doctrine.. 
his followers: I say unto you, love your enemies, do good to them that hate you 
and pray for them that despitefully use you and persecute you. ...and for what? 
that you may be the children of your father which is in heaven. And again.... 
hear and understand. ...whatsoever ye would that men should do unto you, do you 
even so unto them. Did Demetrius do so? Did the pharisees do so? Did the 
priests of Rome, Spain, France, England, or America, that have robbed 
the purses of negroes, widows and men, and imprisoned and burnt thousands to 
death, act up to these suhjime and peace-making doctrines? No, my audience... 
fallen nature possesses no such a spirit we know, from what we feel within; nor 
does it possess even an inclination to act according to those doctrines, more espe- 
cially when gain or self-interest is at stake. And I tell you, there never was 
nor never will be, a covetous craft man that ever did or will possess this heaven- 
born disposition; it is alone in the regenerate soul, and not in men of craft. 
These doctrines of Christ are short, easy to be understood, and no man can ques- 
tion if acted up to, that their advantages both to civil and religious society most 
be unspeakably great... hence it was said, never man spake like this man; no, 
neither Moses, Seneca, nor Cato, in all their lessons of morality. 

But, my 'hearers, I have no doubt already wearied you, and therefore shall 
hasten to a conclusion. 1 call upon you this day, that are readers of the New 
Testament, to say, in defence of the honor of Jesus Christ and his doctrine and 
apostles, as well as the Christian religion in its primitive state, whether he was 
a craft man or not? whether you remember one instance in his life, or precept, 
that will shew any thing like a craft, or gain, or that even smells of a 
scheme to get money? 1 call upon you to say, if you do not think he 
could have made a great craft of his preaching, his miracles, his cures, or even 

the sight of himself? You know he could.... but you know also the history of his 
life shows he did not. All was free, all was willingly, only living on the volun- 
tary charity of the world.... Susannah and others, and Simon the pharisee, ad- 
ministering to his necessities, without hired beggars, society formers, or sub- ; 
scription runners, to create funds to send him or support him as a preacher ] 
while in the world; and would sooner work a miracle to get money to pay his 
tax; than be a craft man. What shall I say of John the Baptist? In those days 
came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judea; the same John 
had his clothing of camel's hair, (coarse stuff,) and a leathern girdle about his 
loins... (and not boots and broadcloth, and silver-headed canes and gold watch- 
chains, often the effects of scheme-craft on the weak and credulous).... and his 
meat was locusts and wild honey. Is there, my audience, found in the New 
Testament, any thing like craft in this first gospel minister? You know there is 
<iot. Next we come to the apostles, Paul, Peter, James and John; and upon 
examination of their epistles, as to doctrine, practices and exhortations, is there 
any thing like forming societies for to raise money outside of the church of 
God? Are there any exhortations to that effect? Are there any beggars, sod* 
eties, or subscription runners among the Jews, to send the gospel to the hea- 
then? Is there any forming societies, begging, funding, and dividing thereby, 
among the apostles? Are there any schemes laid by them, to bring them in 
money? Do they seek to have laws passed to give them salaries? Do they 
gny, if you will give me so much, I Will preach for you? Oh no, these are all 
the marks of craft men, and not the marks of Christ's ministers, as you may ea- 
sily see... ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake, not for filthy lucre sake... these 
hands have ministered to my necessities, I will most gladly spend and be spent 
for you; I am ready to preaeh the gospel to you that are at Rome also.. ..and for 
his name's sake they went forth, taking nothing of the Gentiles. And al- 
though Paul received a gift from the church at Philippi, yet he laid the 
foundation and built up that church... Lydia and the jailor the first converts... 
and this was a church that knew and did her duty. Let him that is taught in, 
the word communicate to him that teaches in all good things.... and in this way 
has the Lord ordained that they that preach the gospel should live of the gos- 
pel, by the voluntary charity of the church and world, and not by scheming 
and begging craft men, lying, and cheating the public, promising to do one 
thing with their money and do another. But is there any thing among the 
apostles, in life, conduct, or doctrine, that has even a shew of scheming priest- 
craft for gain, as in these days, by every stratagem that the ingeuuity of craft j 
men can devise? You know, my hearers, neither their conduct nor doctrines, 
as given us in the epistles, show such marks as those of a scheming craft man.... 
no, they disclaim if, for hear Paul: supposing gain is godliness, from such turn 
away.. .and they shall make merchandize of you, and run greedily after the er- 
ror of Balaam... these are the marks of craft men, given by the Holy Ghost, and 
don't they fit priests in conduct in these days, is for you to judge. 

Lastly, can you find any thing like money-craft among the prophets, from 
Enoch to the close of prophecy? Doth not Elisha put the mark of his disdain 
on moneyed religion, by enstamping the leprosy on Gaharia, who, made a craft 
of the miracle of his master? I now challenge the world to shew any marks of 
craft on the prophets, John the Baptist, Christ, or his apostles, or the first propa- 
gators of Christianity. Come forth, if such marks are to be found... I am ready to 
meet you in the field. And if you cannot. ..say by what authority do you form 
societies, beg money... oh, ye priests, ye crafty, scheming priests, to get money by 
all the shameful schemes of the day., and under what master you serve, God or 
devil? For if the proceedings of missionary conduct is to be found in the 


scriptures, either in begging money or scheming to get it, I am a fool in chris- 
tian politics. I challenge any man, from Canada to Ptmsacota, to show by the 
scriptures any marks of craft in the conduct of the prophets, Christ or his apos- 
tles; or shew any appearance of scheming and devising plans to get money by 
selling memberships into societies, begging or trading in religion, for gain to 
themselves or others. But that they lived on their own labor and the voluntary 
eharity of their brethren and the world, this is a God's truth. And the religion 
of these days is the reverse of their conduct, and so must be a craft. 

The religion of Jesus Christ is peaceable, gentle, kind, humble, world-loosing, 
God-depending, benevolent... and in its doctrine, conduct and spirit, breathes no- 
thing but peace and good will to all mankind, ..and has not, nor cannot, nor ne- 
ver did, nor is not, the author of that blood and persecution and suffering, which 
has filled the world under the color of religion. But those dreadful sufferings 
have in all countries originated with, and been carried on by priestcraft, whe- 
ther pagan ? heathen or christian... .priestcraft has been the sole cause for wealth, 
and craft men in all countries and in all ages are jusrly chargeable with the sor- 
rows of the nations, and the blood that has been shed about religion.. .and not 
the religion of Jesus Christ, in its precepts, spirit, or real followers. ..but by 
craft men, who borrow the garments of religion to hide, cover, and under which 
robe of innocency to perform all their cursed crafts and cruelty on the sons and 
daughters of men. Proof enough.. .witness the craft of Demetrius, raising the 
uproar in Ephesus; for the town clerk clears Paul and his companion of any 
charge... witness the craft of the soothsaying damsel, that brought her master 
much gain; it was that priestcraft that threw Paul and Silas into prison. ..witness 
the priestcraft of the pharisees, persecuting and killing Jesus Christ, of whom the 
judge on the trial said, I find no fault in this man.. ..witness Paul with letters ip 
his pocket from the chief priest making havoc, killing men and women. ..witness 
the pagan persecutions, coming from the pagan priest; read the letter of Governor 
Piloy of Bethina, to the Emperor.. .witness the craft of the priests of the Romish 
church.. .witness the priests in Paris, with crucifixes in, their hands, stimulating 
the Roman Catholics to murder sixty thousand in a night.. ..witness these crafty 
priests in Spain, building and filling the hellish Inquisition, those abodes of 
darkness and dungeons of human misery, with the victims of their wrath... 
witness these men of craft, for fear of the danger of their craft in England, im- 
prisoning, burning, hanging, drowning, and banishing the innocent opposers of 
their craf:; sparing neither age nor sex, but wreaking all their cruelty on them 
.-..witness craft men before the revolution in America, stimulating and exciting 
the magistrates of New-England and Virginia to whip, imprison, fine and ban- 
ish men and women for heresy, or because they would not conform or pay their 
money to craft men. Time would fail me to cite more evidences, for a thou- 
sand others from different ages and countries could be brought to prove that all 
these evils, and ten thousand times as much more, have originated with money- 
hunting and money-getting priests; they and they only were the sole cause of 
all law religion, blood, and cruel tyranny in the nations of the earth, and not 
the religion and world-loosing followers of Jesus Christ; for proof of which I 
have the scriptures and histories of nations to establish the facts. Then, my 
audience, if the schemes of the day is a craft of money-hunting and money-get- 
ting priests, I have put the glass to your face to see what all this will end in, 
unless you resist betimes and save the liberty of your country. For I tell you, 
as in the presence of my God, that the rejigion of Jesus Christ needs no law for 
its support, nor never had any, though craft men have called their religion by 
that name. And I tell you also, that craft men must and will, if it is to be had, 
have law on their side to support their craft. ..for all crafts are in danger where 


free inquiry is granted. Therefore we hear the cry, our craft is in danger, we 
shall lose our wealth; therefore have these money-hunting craft men in all coun- 
tries cried out, ye men of Israel help.. .help, king... help, emperor.. .help, gover- 
nor... help, magistrate.. .help, legislators.. .help, Congress, our craft is in danger. 
And that moment any of these help, they put the dagger in hand to stab his 
brother, and establish priestcraft in the earth, and stand up against the Lord and 
his cause; and shut the door against the messengers of heaven, that bring the ti- 
dings of peace and good will towards men; and maintain on the labors of poor 
farmers and mechanics a set of blood hounds in the world. 

Now my respectful and attentive fellow-citizens, I tell you that it is my can- 
did opinion, that the independence and liberty of our country is in more danger 
at this lime from priestcraft, than it has ever been since the revolution from all 
the nations of the earth, or 3ny past or present source whatever... and I wish to 
remind you, that united we stand, divided we fall, a prey to the tyranny of kings 
or priests. Yea, if you suffer the priests by law to ride on your back, you will 
soon I assure you, have to carry a king behind him. ..for do you not know that 
our forefathers, before tiie revolution, had to wag along with both king and 
priest. And look at Spain, France, and England, wearing the chains of both 
these tyrants, for I tell you, that craft men and kings ride the same horse to 
poverty. And in order to save and perpetuate that most blessed and best inhe- 
ritance of civil and religious- liberty, left us by bleeding fathers, keep Con- 
gress to the text book of the Constitution, and the church of God to the letter of 
the New Testament; and when either is perverted to self-interest, and to mean 
any thing and every thing, to the interest of statesmen or priests, resist, as the 
people is the sovereign of the country. For if you lose sight of these polar 
stars, and do not often refer to first principles, we sink into the whirlpool of ty- 
ranny like other nations. Be jealous of jour rights and liberty, while you have 
got them; for if lost it will be your own fault, and when gone perhaps gone for- 
ever. And if you should carelessly and negligently let scheming priests take 
them from you, you will deserve to he accursed by your dead fathers, and by 
future generations unborn. Oh, look abroad and behold all the nations of the 
earth in tyranny but ourselves; and oh, think how nigh liberty was, after the 
Declaration of Independence, banished from the earth. ..see only a little band of 
patriotr, threQ thousand strong, whose bosoms were fanned with the heavenly 
flame of liberty or death, under the leading of ihe god-like Washington cross- 
ing the icy Delaware and marching up the hill of snowy Trenton to make now, 
as it were, the last struggle to plead her cause against oppressing tyrants. ..for 
this was the crisis of American independence.. .this victory gave fresh life to 
whigs,butto tories and priestcraft a lasting blow at the root. I call upon you, 
therefore, by the blood of the martyrs of liberty, by the tears of weeping or- 
phans and widows, and by the blood-stained roads, fields, and decks of ships, 
and the groans of the wounded and dying heroes of our country, never, no 
never, no never to suffer a law religion of any kind, however foreign. 

I leave you now, my audience, to cempare, reflect, and improve on what I 
have said; praying that God, that manages the destinies of nations, to perpetu- 
ate the independence of our country, which was bought at so dear a rate. 

\)ji Second Edition— Free Frcss—Tarboro'.