Thursday, May 25. The moment I awaked, ‘Jesus, Master,’ was in my heart and in my mouth; and I found all my strength lay in keeping my eye fixed upon him, and my soul waiting on him continually. Being again in St. Paul’s in the afternoon, I could taste the good word of God in the anthem, which began, ‘My song shall be always of the loving-kindness of the Lord: with my mouth will I ever be showing forth thy truth from one generation to another.’ Yet the enemy injected a fear, ‘If thou dost believe, why is there not a more sensible change?’ I answered (yet not I), ‘That I know not. But this I know, I have now peace with God, and I sin not today, and Jesus my Master has forbid me to take thought for the morrow.’
‘But is not any sort of fear’, continued the tempter, ‘a proof that thou dost not believe?’ I desired my Master to answer for me, and opened his book upon those words of St. Paul, ‘Without were fightings, within were fears.’ Then inferred I, well may fears be within me; but I must go on, and tread them under my feet.
Friday, May 26. My soul continued in peace, but yet in heaviness, because of manifold temptations. I asked Mr. Töltschig the Moravian what to do. He said, You must not fight with them as you did before, but flee from them the moment they appear, and take shelter in the wounds of Jesus. The same I learned also from the afternoon anthem, which was, ‘My soul truly waiteth still upon God; for of him cometh my salvation. He verily is my strength and my salvation; he is my defence, so that I shall not greatly fall. [. . .] O put your trust in him always, ye people; pour out your hearts before him, for God is our hope.’
Sat. 27. Believing one reason of my want of joy was want of time for prayer, I resolved to do no business till I went to church in the morning, but to continue pouring out my heart before him. And this day my spirit was enlarged; so that though I was now also assaulted by many temptations, I was more than conqueror, gaining more power thereby to trust and to rejoice in God my Saviour.
Sun. 28. I waked in peace, but not in joy. In the same even quiet state I was till the evening, when I was roughly attacked in a large company as an enthusiast, a seducer, and a setter-forth of new doctrines. By the blessing of God I was not moved to anger, but after a calm and short reply went away, though not with so tender a concern as was due to those who were seeking death in the error of their life.
This day I preached in the morning at
St. George’s, Bloomsbury,
on ‘This is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith’, and in
the afternoon at the chapel in Long Acre, on God’s justifying the ungodly—the
last time (I understand) I am to preach at either. ‘Not as I will, but as thou
Mon. 29. I set out for Dummer with Mr. Wolf, one of the first-fruits of Peter Böhler’s ministry in
. I was much strengthened by
the grace of God in him: yet was his state so far above mine that I was often
tempted to doubt whether we had one faith. But, without much reasoning about
it, I held here: ‘Though his be strong and mine weak, yet that God hath given
some degree of faith even to me I know by its fruits. For I have constant
peace, not one uneasy thought. And I have freedom from sin, not one unholy desire.’ England
Yet on Wednesday did I grieve the Spirit of God, not only by not ‘watching unto prayer’, but likewise by speaking with sharpness instead of tender love, of one that was not sound in the faith. Immediately God hid his face and I was troubled; and in this heaviness I continued till the next morning, June 1, when it pleased God, while I was exhorting another, to give comfort to my soul, and (after I had spent some time in prayer) to direct me to those gracious words, ‘Having therefore boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, . . . let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith.[. . .] Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering (for he is faithful that promised), and let us consider one another, to provoke unto love and to good works.’
Saturday, June 3. I was so strongly assaulted by one of my old enemies that I had scarce strength to open my lips, or even to look up for help. But after I had prayed, faintly, as I could, the temptation vanished away.