Cloud of Witnesses

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Andrew Arnot

Captain Arnot, as he is usually styled, from the rank which, it appears, he had previously borne in the army, was a gentlemen of some property and influence. He was brother to the laird of Lochridge, an estate lying in the district of Cunningham. He joined the covenanters at Ayr, took command of a troop, and proceeded with them to Lanark; and from there, till they arrived at Rullion Green, where he was taken with sword in hand. Whether he delivered the following speech on the scaffold, we have not ascertained. As containing his separate testimony, to the cause in which he suffered, it may be regarded, only as an addition and enforcement to the foregoing, which, with his nine companions in suffering, he had already subscribed.

'Dear friends and spectators, I am brought by the good providence of God to this place of execution (which is no dishonour) for points of treason, as is alleged; but God knows (who knows the secrets of hearts) whether in rebellion or not, I came forth; he is my witness, and will be my judge. And whoever they be that any way have been instrumental or incensed against me, to procure this sentence against me, God forgive them and I forgive them. I am not now purposed to dispute the matter of my being in company with these worthy Christians who are now defeat and broken, their blood shed, and they despitefully mocked by many; I acknowledge and declare, that I was with them. As to the cause of my being with them, whether in rebellion or not, God knows, and all Israel shall know. And for me, I say the cause is the Lord's, who made the heaven and the earth, though now it be hated. And, I desire to bear witness, with the rest of the worthy witnesses who are gone before, and are now staged to that glorious work of reformation in Britain and Ireland, and to gospel ordinances in their purity, as they have been taught and administered these thirty years past. And I adhere to the Presbyterian way of doctrinal worship, discipline, and government by general assemblies, synods, Presbyteries, and sessions, according to the pattern of the holy scriptures, (Jesus Christ himself being the head corner stone) the Confession of faith, catechisms Shorter and Longer, Directory for Public Worship, National Covenant, Solemn League and Covenant, and every paper tending to the good of the true religion. And this I think fit to testify and declare under my hand (not knowing if I shall have any liberty to speak) and intend, God willing, to seal with my blood shortly. I confess that unexpectedly I am come to this place, (though sometimes I have had some small thought of if) and I do account myself highly honoured to be reckoned amongst the witnesses of Jesus Christ, to suffer for his name, truth, and cause; and this day I esteem it my glory, garland, crown, and royal dignity, to fill up a part of his sufferings.

And now, I take my leave of you all, my dear and worthy friends and acquaintances. The blessings of the eternal God be multiplied upon you and your seed, and upon all the suffering friends of Christ, this day; upon my dear and loving wife, who hath been a faithful sympathizer with me, and upon my dear children. The work of God is now put under, but it shall carry the day; blessed is he that believeth and sees not, for there shall be a performance. Now, the eternal God, who brought again the Lord Jesus Christ from the dead, the great Shepherd of the sheep, strengthen and stablish you, and all the Lord's people. So pray ye, and so prays your friend.