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Thomas Bromley: From ‘The Way to the Sabbath of Rest’ – Explanation of the Frontispiece

Frontispiece of the 1709 Amsterdam edition

of Thomas Bromley’s ‘Way to the Sabbath of Rest’.


Today’s sharing from the Blue House of Via-HYGEIA, is the description by Thomas Bromley himself (not by a modern exegete usually commenting ana-chronically) of the notorious frontispiece. Text is coming from the ‘Zugabe’ found at the end of the German language edition of the ‘ Way to the Sabbath of Rest’ published in Amsterdam in 1709. All the original English manuscripts, besides his famous ‘trilogy’ published in 1710 and 1744, were ‘lost‘; so we are relying on the remarkable German edition done in the  immediate aftermath of the author death on  April 13th, 1691. The translator used a Mana of unpublished material that are mostly still missing in English today… This text was translated directly from the German into English by Nalan for Via-HYGEIA.


‘These big circles overlapping represent the nature, shapes and being of the souls which are an expression of an outspoken word and are in a true essential resemblance with the eternal speaking word of God according to the three principles.

The lowest circle is the first principle, the bitter darkness as the fire-root of the souls, from this source the Light is being born, so the Scriptures says : “ I create Darkness”, Isaie, 45, verse 6 and 7.

The upper circle is the second principle of the Divine Light in the souls, and at this place “ I make Light ” or “ The Kingdom of God is inside of you”, Luc 17. And  so is Peace and Joy in the Holy Ghost.

The middle circle, the third one, is the outer-nature of the stars and elements within our natural human condition in flesh and blood which we apprehend with proud reason and the senses; which Salomon in his sermon is describing in Ch. I, verse 4. till 11 and especially  Chapter III, verse 18 till 21.

Further more is shown here how the human soul is living in the combination of these 3  principles and how in her the two eternal principles, the Divine Light and the Eternal Darkness are revealed according to their Will and Imagination. In the lowest circle is the center , showing the wheel of essences which is spinning always on itself and gives birth to her own darkness and fire affliction, whose shapes- with the exception of the light of God- are named as the immortal Worm. Marc, 9, verse 44 and Isaie 66, v 24. But if it is enlightened with the Divine Light through re-birth and cleansing of the heart, as we see in the upper circle, it is called the Candle of the Lord which sees all hidden things inside of us. Prov.20, v.27. And an eye which shows God. Mat.5,v.6. Also it is here presented how the soul in mortal flesh and blood between the kingdoms of God and Hell live in pride because the devil, the old snake, is the prince of the darkness who is ruling in the lust, being the true neighbour who is always watching the soul being tempted by God falling into Sin and Evil dragging you to wallow in his pool of fire – of which Petrus says: “ The Devil, your opponent is going around you like a raging lion and search for who he can devour”. On the top, the soul has the Christic world, as  Divine Strength and Wisdom, which allows her to stretch her arms the whole day so that she can be re-born into Light and be part of the Divine Nature. Like in Prov.1,v.20 till 23 and especially chapter 2 and after.

The three crosses, differently represented in each circle, are showing the state and the degrees of re-birth. In the lowest it is totally black and cross-stripped which is describing the big fear of Hell when  conscience first is dirtyed with Sin and Horror and stand in front of God like a disgusting monster and hell-worm : Then huge misery, fear and obnoxiousness (because it is the Abyss/Ungrund of Hell) is revealed. Here there is battling and wrestling, sighting and crying to God and Christ, the Savior who revealed the Kingdom of the Devil, through his entrance to the soul. Then the soul is awakened and ready for a fight against the devil and all prides.

Then when the soul is shouting from the hell-pit (David, Psalm 130) and her heart is breaking (because the new Will would be re-born, and bring it up to God, and offer a new obedience) the Hell will be closed; due to this deep breakthrough and rise, the soul arrives at the gate of Heaven. (As the lowest part of the upper circle) And there in Heaven, the soul receives the sight of God’s mercy so her sins will be forgiven and her mood will be strengthened with new love and she gets joyful and comforted. Because she is coming with a new and higher state into the middle cross, because she perceives herself as in the water of the eternal fear of Hell (shown with thin horizontal lines in the lowest half part of the cross) and feels the anger of God in her consciousness, and please note: She would like to stay there because her eye is opened and she is aware of the divine. But this rest is temporary: The outer boundaries of Hell of the lowest circle have not been crossed yet. By not continuing further (in deep humbleness) the soul may fall down easily and be the place where the 7 angry spirits will reside. Because those who are stuck half way will not reach home. Because the soul senses that she is still bothered by the wheel of pride. Confronted by this new fear and death, she needs to re-direct herself, (therefore leaving the realm of the sun, moon and stars with its appeasing consolation, mercy, and sensual awareness of divine things being temporary and bring her no complete joy) climbing further through the upper level of the cross (shown in vertical lines) and search for the last cross because the spirit of Christ rests in the hands of the Father.

Therefore the new born soul and its heart cleansed by the blood of Christ rest in peace and looks at God in His Light, with His Light, which is the Crowning in Sabbath.

So the Soul has reached her destination through giving up her Ego/Selbstheit and has found divine life resulting from Mercy and being Re-united with God, being a seed of wheat which is resurrected from death, bringing hundred of fruits: An Eternal and Immortal token for all Mercies and Affection, given for her sanctification and the inheritance of His kingdom in Christ. Hallelujah !

Thank the Lord, all you non-believers!

Praise him, all you folks!

Because his Mercy and Affection will last forever!’


Original German




Note: Our blessed friend Thomas Bromley doesn’t explain the presence of the clock, as shown in the middle cross level. Axis of the quadrant is not fixed on 12/6 but on 1/7- which is an anomaly. This invite us to reflect why…If the axis would be ‘normal’ that is of 12/6, the soul would not be able to departure, so to continue it’s journey upwards (inward). Hence it’s feeling of being stuck and suffers the bitter bites of its seven angry spirits (7 unbalanced chakras?). Being on an axis of 1/7 permits the entrance to the upper level, shown by the number 1 (God as UNITY value, Hakikat) at the upper part of the middle cross. Identical engravings from the Dutch editions of Jacob Boehme’s Theosophical writings show similar clocks with different keys, such letters of the alphabet given number values or astrological signs given proper positions into the clock’s working.

 The clocks

as in Jacob Boehme’s

writings engravings




Thomas Bromley’s trilogy:
Thomas Bromley: From ‘The Way to the Sabbath of Rest’ – Explanation of the Frontispiece

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