375. WILLIAM NICHOL.
The suffering and martyrdom of William Nichol, put to death by the wicked hands of the papists at Haverford-west in Wales.
We find in all ages from the beginning, that Satan hath not ceased at all times to molest the church of Christ with one affliction or other, to the trial of their faith; but yet never so apparently at any time to all the world, as when the Lord hath permitted him power over the bodies of his saints, to the shedding of their blood, and perverting of their religion; for then sleepeth he not, I warrant you, from the murdering of the same, unless they will fall down with Ahab and Jezebel to worship him, and so kill and poison their own souls eternally; as in these miserable latter days of Queen Mary we have felt, heard, and seen practised upon God's people. Among whom we find recorded an honest, good, simple poor man, one William Nichol, who was apprehended by the champions of the pope, for speaking certain words against the cruel kingdom of antichrist, and the ninth day of April, anno 1558, was butcherly burnt and tormented at Haverford-west in Wales, where he ended his life in a most happy and blessed state, and gloriously gave his soul into the hands of the Lord, whose goodness be praised for ever! Amen.
This William Nichol (as we are informed) was so simple a good soul, that many esteemed him half foolish. But what he was, we know not; but this we are sure, he died a good man, and in a good cause, whatsoever they judge of him. And the more simplicity and feebleness of wit appeared in him, the more beastly and wretched doth it declare their cruel and tyrannical act therein. The Lord give them repentance there-for, if it be his blessed will! Amen, Amen.