Excerpt from Oliver Cromwell's Letters and Speeches, Vol. 3 of 4: With Elucidations
The faults or misfortunes of the Scotch People, in their Puritan business, are many: but properly their grand fault is this, That they have produced for it no sufficiently heroic man among them. No man that has an eye to see beyond the letter and the rubric; to discern, across many consecrated rubrics of the Past, the inarticulate divineness too of the Present and the Future, and dare all perils in the faith of that! With Oliver Cromwell born a Scotchman; with a Hero King and a unanimous Hero Nation at his back, it might have been far otherwise. With Oliver born Scotch, one sees not but the whole world might have become Puritan; might have struggled, yet a long while, to fashion itself according to that divine Hebrew Gospel, - to the exclusion of other Gospels not Hebrew, which also are divine, and will have their share of fulfilment here! - But of such issue there is no danger. Instead of inspired Olivers, glowing with direct insight and noble daring, we have Argyles, Loudons, and narrow, more or less opaque persons of the Pedant species. Committees of Estates, Committees of Kirks, much tied-up in formulas, both of them: a bigoted Theocracy without the Inspiration; which is a very hopeless phenomenon indeed! The Scotch People are all willing, eager of heart; asking, Whitherward? But the Leaders stand aghast at the new forms of danger; and in a vehement discrepant manner some calling, Halt! others calling. Backward! others, Forward! - huge confusion ensues. Confusion which will need an Oliver to repress it; to bind it up in tight manacles, if not otherwise; and say, There, sit there and consider thyself a little!" -
The meaning of the Scotch Covenant was. That God's divine Law of the Bible should be put in practice in these Nations; verily, and not the Four Surplices at Allhallowtide, or any Formula of cloth or sheepskin here or elsewhere which merely pretended to be it. But then the Covenant says expressly, there is to be a Stuart King in the business: we cannot do without our Stuart King! Given a divine Law of the Bible on one hand, and a Stuart King, Charles First or Charles Second, on the other: alas, did History ever present a more irreducible case of equations in this world?
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