Lord’s Day Schedule‚Ä°

  • Sabbath School—9:45 a.m.
  • Morning Worship—10:45 a.m.
  • Afternoon Worship—2:00 p.m.
  • ‡ Regular schedule temporarily suspended.

Shepard on the power of the Civil Magistrate

It is true civil magistrates may abuse their power, judge amiss, and think that to be the command of God which is not; but we must not therefore take away their power from them, because they may pervert it and abuse it; we must not deny that power they have for God, because they may pervert it and turn the edge of it against God; for if upon this ground the magistrate hath no power over his subjects in matters of the first table, he may have also all his feathers pulled from him, and all his power taken from him in matters of the second table; for we know that he may work strange changes there, and pervert justice and judgment exceedingly: we must not deny their power, because they may turn it awry, and hurt God’s church and people by it, but (as the apostle exhorts, 1 Timothy 2.1-2) to pray for them the more, that under them we may live a peaceable life in all godliness and honesty: it is a thousand times better to suffer persecution for righteousness’ sake and for a good conscience, than to desire and plead for toleration of all consciences, that so (by this cowardly device and lukewarm principle) our own may be untouched: it was never heard of, until now of late, that any of God’s prophets, apostles, martyrs, faithful witnessess [sic], etc., that they ever pleaded for liberty in error, but only for the truth, which they preached and prayed for, and suffered for unto the death; and their sufferings for the truth with zeal, patience, faith, constancy, have done more good than the way of universal toleration is like to do, which is purposely invented to avoid trouble. Truth hath ever spread by opposition and persecution; but error, being a child of Satan, hath fled, by a zealous resisting of it.

—Thomas Shepard, Theses Sabbaticae, reprinted by Soli Deo Gloria Publications (1992) p. 264 (emphasis added).

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