We demand, yea or no, whether the earth with her fruits, was made to be bought and sold from one to another? And whether one part of mankind was made lord of the land, and another part a servant by the Law of Creation before the Fall.
— JERRARD WINSTANLEY, Letter to Lord Fairfax (1649),
cited in the New Age, February 24, 1898, p. 333.
And here now we desire your public preachers, that say they preach the righteous law, to consider these questions, which confirms us in the peace of our hearts, that we that are the common people born in England, ought to improve the commons, as we have declared, for a public treasury and livelihood, and that those that hinder us are rebels to their Maker, and enemies to the creation.
First, we demand, Aye or No, whether the earth with her fruits was made to be bought and sold from one to another? and whether one part of mankind was made a lord of the land and another part a servant, by the law of Creation before the Fall?
I affirm (and I challenge you to disprove) that the earth was made to be a common treasury of livelihood for all, without respect of persons, and was not made to be bought and sold. And that mankind in all his branches is the lord over the beasts, birds, fishes and the Earth, and was not made to acknowledge any of his own kind to be his teacher and ruler, but the spirit of righteousness only his Maker, and to walk in his light, and so to live in peace. And this being a truth, as it is, then none ought to be lords or landlords over another, but the earth is free for every son and daughter of mankind to live free upon.
This question is not to be answered by any text of Scripture, or example since the Fall. But the answer is to be given in the light of itself, which is the law of righteousness, or that Word of God that was in the beginning, which dwells in man's heart and by which he was made, even the pure law of creation, unto which the creation is to be restored.