Primitive Christianity Revived, Again
Research Notes, George Fox, John Perrot, Ancient Simplicity
The Ancient Simplicity, as it was once Witnessed unto By George Fox.
While researching texts published on Early English Books Online, I came across this small piece of text wherein a person shares a letter written by George Fox which is used to suggest that George Fox, in his response to, and attacks against, John Perrot had come out of the Ancient Simplicity of minding the Universal Spirit that he himself testified to. This is another example showing there were Quakers, contemporary to George Fox, who came out against the process of holding all Quakers in the gathering accountable to various outward practices, principles, ceremonies, and testimonies, even those Quakers who who did not share the same conscience. To do so was to go against the Ancient Simplicity wherein through the appearance of the inshining Light in their conscience, the gathering was come out of the act of ruling over the conscience of others through the adherence to outward forms. Here is the letter and the response.
Friend be wise and meek, and if any weakness thou shalt see in any, put on Comliness on the uncool part; and take heed of Judging rashly, but mind the Universal Spirit, and that which tends to Love and Edification: For Love Edifies, and there is no Edification, but in Love which is out of the Strife: And bearing Grudge, against any one, take heed of that; For that which doth overcome Evil in any one is, Patience, Love, and Suffering; And he that doth wrong, he Lord will repay it. It is Love That makes up Breaches, but striving about Words makes them wider.; Therefore take heed of Strife, least the Canker enter into thy Breast, and raise up an evil Eye, and eat out the good, and keep thy Spirit restless out of the Love of God. Therefore that Mind, and live in that which keeps they Spirit in quietness, and peace with God and Friends; Looking at the Witness of God in every one, and answering the Witness of God in every one, from a Lover of thy Soul.
This Letter was written to a Friend, the 24 of the 7 Moneth, 1661 and now stands a Witness against that Spirit of Enmity and Bitterness, which broke forth against John Perrot.