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[The following account of the faithfulness of John Bradford in rebuking the worldliness of the courtiers of Edward VI F256 is supplied by Knox the Scottish Reformer in his ‘Godly Letter to the faithful in London, Newcastle, and Berwick,’ etc. 1554.] ¼ Master Bradford (whom God for Christ’s his Son sake comfort to the end) spared not the proudest; but boldly declared that God’s vengeance shortly should strike those that then were in authority, because they loathed and abhorred the true word of the everlasting God; and amongst many other F258 willed them to take ensample by the late duke of Somerset, who became so cold in hearing God’s word, that, the year before his last apprehension, he would go to visit his masons, and would not dingy F259 himself from his gallery to go to his hall for hearing of a sermon. ‘God punished him,’ said that godly preacher, ‘and that suddenly: and shall he spare you that be double more wicked? No, he shall not. Will ye or will ye not, ye shall drink the cup of the Lord’s wrath, Judicium Domini, judicium Domini ! The judgment of the Lord, the judgment of the Lord!’ lamentably cried he with a lamentable voice and weeping tears. F260 . [The following “Godly Meditations with other exercises,” “gathered by John Bradford in the time of his imprisonment,” which occupy p.116 — 220 of the present volume, were, for the most part, “first printed” F261 by Hall 1562, and are now republished, with the exceptions hereafter mentioned, from a copy of that impression belonging to the editor.
The greater part of the ‘prayer on the work of Christ’ (entitled in the Meditations 1562, ‘a prayer for deliverance from sin and to be restored to God’s grace and favor again’) is now printed for the first time from a MS. in the Library of Emmanuel College, Cambridge.
The following memorandum is printed in a copy of the Meditations of 1562, in the collection of the late George Stokes, Esq., on a separate paper, evidently belonging to that book, and annexed to signature 1 3, after the meditation on the ninth commandment: “Through unperfectness of copies his doing upon the tenth commandment is not yet come to light: therefore take this in good part till God send the rest.”
Lever “added his endeavor to supply that lack,” in the collection of Meditations and other pieces by Bradford, printed by Seres 1567, (of which the title is supplied further on in this volume;) of which he speaks with much humility in a preface which, with the meditation he furnished, is printed in the Appendix to this volume, from a copy which had belonged to the late Revelation Legh Richmond, now in the possession of the Revelation J. Ayre.
The meditation on the tenth commandment given in the present volume follows the text of a copy of the “Godly Meditations” of Bradford, Allde 1604, in the University Library, Cambridge.
The “Godly Meditations,” 1562, have been occasionally compared with a copy of the edition of Allde 1578, belonging to the Revelation W. H. Havergal, Prebendary of Worcester, and with 1604, 1607, 1614, and 1621; as also with 1567 in the meditations on the Lord’s prayer, belief, commandments, and on prayer. The text of 1604 in the tenth commandment has been collated with 1607, 1614, and 1621.
The ‘meditation on the Lord’s Prayer,’ from p.118 to 126 line 16, and that ‘on the belief,’ p. 140 — 8, have also (as noted on the margin of each) been collated with MSS. in Emmanuel College, Cambridge, with which the printed text of 1562 generally agrees closely.
The variations however are only noted in special cases.
The portion of the ‘Defence of election’ given in the collection of 1562 is printed further on in the present volume, together with its other parts, as a separate treatise, as found in a MS. in the Bodleian Library, Oxford. ] GODLY MEDITATIONS ON THE