THE FAITH OF THE Church Militant, Moste effectualie described in this exposition of the 84. Psalme, by that reuerend Pastor, and publike Professor of Gods word, in the famous vniuersi­tie of Haffine in Den­marke, NICHOLAS HEMMINGIVS.

A treatise written as to the instruction of the ignorant in the groundes of religion, so to the confutation of the Iewes, the Turkes, Atheists, Papists, Heretiks▪ and al other aduersaries of the trueth what­soeuer.

Translated out of Latine into English, &c. by THOMAS ROGERS.

AT LONDON, Printed by H. Middleton for Andrew Maunsel. ANNO. 1581.

❧To the right honorable, and virtuous Ladie, the Comitisse of Sussex, &c. Grace and fauour both with God and man.

INfinite, and vnspeakeable are the be­nefits of our God to vs ward, right ho­norable, among which his gratious & miraculous reuealing of the eternall truth from time to time, is, as diligent­ly, so gratefully to be recorded. For ma­nie, and those mightie aduersaries hath it had in all a­ges. Satan the prince of darkenesse in Paradise; Kaine with his posteritie before the floud; after the drowning of the worlde Cham and his seede vntill the promise vnto Abraham; from that time vntil the Lawe was de­liuered by Moses, the Ismaelites, the Chaldeans, the Persians, the Aegyptians blemished, and to their pow­ers banished the same.

In the time of Ahab through the priests of Baal,1. Kings. 1 [...]. 21. 22. &c. and the false prophets; in the time of Nebuchad-nezzar through extreme captiuitie;1. King. 22. 6. and in our Sauiours time what through the tyrannie of wicked Magistrates, and through the heresies of vngodly teachers, smal tokens of this truth in the world could be seene of man.

Furthermore, consider we the time after our Saui­ours death when the Apostles yet flourished; & the a­ges after that vntil this verie daie, and we shal finde that verie fiercelie it hath bene assalted; and is come vn­to our hands with no smal adoe.

[Page] For in the Apostles time Simon,Act. 8, 9. 10 &c. and Elymas sorce­rers; false-apostles, and false brethren (whereof some at Coloss [...],Act. 13, 8. 9. &c. gaue out that the traditions of men were necessarilie to be obserued; that the superstitious af­fliction of the bodie was à religious seruing of God;Coloss. 2. that differences shoulde bee set betweene meates, and drinkes, and da [...]es, according to the Iewish custome; and that the sonne of God, Christ, was not the worker of mans saluation, but that by Angels we haue an open accesse prepared vnto the Father: others at Ieru­salem,Acts 15. taught that circumcision was so behooueful vnto saluation, that vnlesse men were circumcised it was vnpossible for them to bee saued; and that freelie, or by faith alone wee are not iustified, but by workes also; others, at Corinth, were of opinion that there was no resurrection at al; others, that it is alrea­die past,1. Cor. 15. as Hymeneus, and Philetus: and others, (to o [...]it the vngodlie opinions both of those which in­ueighed against Magistrates,2. Tim. 2, 17. 18. whom Peter and Iude wrote against, and of those which mingled the trueth with vane fables,2. Pet. 2, 10. and genealogies, as manie did in Asia, and in Crete,Iude, ver. 8. and of those who thought how such as beleeued might liue as theie would in al licentious­nes,1. Tim. 1, 34 forsomuch as freelie without good workes they were iustified,Tit. 3, 8. 9 which imps of Satan by the Epistle of Iude are worthilie consuted,Iude, vers 4, and finallie of Antichrist then arising in his members) vtterlie denied Christ,2. Thess. 2. 3. 4. &c. yea and God too,Iude ver. 4. as Athe [...]sts) did what in thē was to seduce men from this truth.

These being dead, others arose, both in nūber more plētifulie; & for their abhominable errors more hurt­fulie to ye Church of Christ. As vnder the Emperor A­drianus, the Gnostikes, a pestilent companie whereof some were called Barborians, some Barbolites, some Cod [...]ans, some Stratio tikes, some Phibionites, & some Zacheans; vnder Antoninus Pius not onely the Valen­tinians, of whom did spring the N [...]asinors, the Phenio­nites, the Setheans, the Kainites, the Orphites, the Anti­tactars, [Page] and others: but also the Marcionites, the Cer­domtes, the Eucratites, and Hydroparactites, with the Seuerians; vnder Antoninus Verus the Montanistes, the Cataphrygians, the Artotyrits; vnder Philip the Aria­bans, and Helchesaits, the Nouatians, and Catharans vnder Decius; vnder Gallus the Noetians; Patripassi­ans, Hermogenians, the Millenaries, and the Nepoti­ans, vnder Galienus the Samosatenians, vnder Probus the Manichies &c, the cursed errors of al which I mind not either for breuitie, or for modestie sake to recite. To conclude, so did the seede of heresies in a short space of time take roote, that Augustine in a certaine place confesseth howe in his daies they were growen vnto fourescore and eight principal, famous, and seue­ral sects.

Which enimies to this truth decreased not, but dai­lie more and more forceablie encreased in such wise, that their errors were neither in corners taught, nor defended by a fewe, priuate, and obscure fellowes, as manie of the former; but both publiquelie profes­sed ouer the whole worlde, and also stiflie maintai­ned against al men by the greatest tyrans that euer gouerned, I meane the Pope, and the Turke, where­of this by force, and hee by fraude, and both most wretchedlie for these 900. yeares haue desperatelie addicted themselues to the vtter abolishing of this e­ternal truth. But al in vane. For as God in times passed raised vp against Kaine, Habel; against Cham, Sem; against the Ismaelites, the Israelites, Abraham a­gainst the Chaldeans; Ioseph against the Aegypti­ans; against the Priests of Baal, Elias; Micheas a­gainst the false Prophets; Daniel, and his felowes against Nebuchad-nezzar, Christe against the Pharisies &c: Philip and Peter against Simon Ma­gus, Paul against Elymas, the disciples of Christ a­gainst false-apostles, against heretikes (to saie no­thing at this time of the blessed Martys whiche vnto the death stucke vnto this trueth) Irenaeus, [Page] Cyril, Tertullian, Augustine, and other Godly fathers, by whose learning, zeale, and constancie the trueth maugre the heads of al aduersaries was maintained: So he hath, & dailie doth stirre vp his seruants to with­stand them.

Howe the one,D. Chytraeus Ora▪ de sta [...] Eccles. namelie the Turke, preuaileth ouer this truth, not onelie the manifold companies of Chri­stians in Grecia,Hoc tempo­re in Grae­cia Asia, Africa &c. Mysia, Bulgaria, Thracia, Russia, Mus­couia but also the Patriarchs of Byzantie; of Alex­andria, of Antioch, & of Ierusalem, al which are Chri­stians; & the publike seruice of Christians day by day, in moe than twentie temples, euen in the chiefest ci [...]e of his empire, at this verie instant, al which coūtries & persons notwithstanding being tributarie vnto the Turkes, do witnes.

And how the other, I meane the Pope his holines doth prosper, by the present state of England, of Scotland, of Germanie, France, Denmark, Bohemia, besides other na­tions and kingdomes, for al his bloodie inquisition in Spaine, and Massacres in France, and murthers in Scot­land, and wars in the low countries, and rebellions in Ireland, and conspiracies in England, it is apparent to ye view of the whole world. Wherby it may be gathered that great is the trueth, and it wil preuaile.

It is the parts therefore of vs which are partakers of this trueth, first to be thankeful vnto almightie God for preseruing the same from perishing; for gathering to himselfe a Church wherein his truth is sounded, and showen from age to age; and for admitting vs into that companie, which both in this worlde doe professe his Name, and in the worlde to come shal euerlastinglie extoll his goodnes.

And secondly it is our dueties by all the giftes and meanes which God hath imparted vpon vs to aduance, and promote this trueth. Which they among others do worthilie that by preaching; but they, as I thinke, best of al performe, which by writing publish, & spread-a­broad the same, and that not onely because for ye time [Page] present they do greatly profit, but especialie for that they prouide both for the instruction, and comfirma­tion of the posteritie to come. For bookes wil teach, and strengthen, & testifie, and consute when men hap­pilie cannot. In which respect we are much beholding to the Prophets, much to the Apostles, to the Fathers much, and much to the Godlie learned of our age. For by their bookes and writings wee knowe the trueth, which otherwise smallie, or not so perfectlie coulde be vnderstoode.

Of which truth I doe nowe present vnto your Ho­nor, noble Comitisse, à most singular descriptiō, draw­en out of the pure fountanes of Gods holie word, and to the ouerthrowe of al aduersaries of the same, whe­ther theie be Iewes, Turks, Papists, Atheistes, or what­soeuer heretikes, written in the Latine tongue by that learned, and paineful Pastor in the Church of Christ at this day, Nicholas Hemmingius, publique professor of diuinitie at Haffine à famous Vniuersitie in Denmark.

Which treatise I haue translated into English for these causes. One is, that the ignorant sort of people may see, howe Protestants are not so, as the Papists giue out, at variance among themselues. For this work, with infinite other good bookes of foraine writers in our English tongue, doth shew, that touching the substance of Religion we varie not, neither wil by Gods grace, though Satan gladly would bring it so to passe.

[...]nother is, that it may bee knowen from time to time that the Religion which al the Protestants in the world doe maintaine, is not à seruice of God newlie found-out by Luther, Melancton, Caluine, and others, as the Papists vntruely report; but is verie ancient, and grounded altogether vpon Gods holy worde. For this trueth here described, is builded not vpon the weake in [...]entions of man, but vpon the holie scriptures, as may easilie appeare.

The third, that it may be more knowen, and cōmon then hitherto it hath bine. For this is proper to true [Page] Religion, which thing is not proper either to Poperie, or to any sect of heretikes, that the more it is knowen, the more it is desired; & the more common, the more commended.

The last is, seing how good Christians do both stu­diouslie reade, and also gratefulie accept good Books in our vulgar tongue at this day, to giue them an oc­casion, when either for the ignorance, negligence, or Non residence of their Pastors, or for other causes they can not heare ye word preached, to inflame their zeales by the reading of this Booke, which in al respectes is so necessarie and singular, as in mine opinion, though there be manie good, yet but fewe better Bookes. And that it maie be read with more pleasure, and vnder­stoode with more ease. I haue not onlie illustrated the same with the places of Scripture, but also diui­ded the Booke into Chapters, the one sheweth the in­tegritie of the doctrine, and the other openeth the ex­cellencie of the method.

And these my labors I am bolde nowe to publishe vnder your name, Noble Comitisse, moued thereunto partlie by the good reporte generalie giuen of your Honor, as one which maketh no smal account both of Christian religion, and of them, who are Christianlie religious; and partelie by that fauour which my selfe haue found at your handes, the which I beseech your goodnesse, accept wel in worth.

God almightie, euen for his sonnes sake, confirme your Ladieship in that truth vntil your liues ende, whereof nowe you are not, neither neede to be a­shamed; and graunt to your Honor, and to the Right Honourable your husband, both the perfect felicitie of this life to your hearts desire, and in the worlde to come those thinges which he hath prepared for such as vnfeinedlie doe loue him, Amen. The fourth of No­uember, Anno 1581.

At your Honors commandement Thomas Rogers.

¶TO THE HONO­rable, and for wisdome, god­lines, and vertue, the renowmed Lorde, Peter Oxe, Lord of Gisselfelde, Master of the Pa­lace both of the King, and also of the King­dome of Denmarke, &c. his most gratious Lord and worthie Pation, NICHOLAS HEM­MINGIUS, wisheth al peace, safetie, and prosperitie in his god­lie enterprises.

HOWE great the darkenes of mans minde is concerning God, and his prouidence, right Honorable, not onelie the infinite sectes in à man­ner of Philosophers; but also the la­mentable securitie of verie manie men, who by their life and conuersation, doe shewe that either they acknowledge no God at al, or thinke that God (as it is in Homer) doth so dallie-out the time a­mong I knowe not what Ethiopians, that he hath no leasure to see vnto the state of mankinde, doe witnes. Such is the darkenes, & the vanitie of men is such, euer since the fal of our first Parentes, and mightilie hath it beene confirmed, partlie through euil education, & partlie by the examples of those, who doe seeme to excell others both in wisedome and vertue.

This loathsome darknes none other way cā be de­pelled, thā by the torch of god his world. Hitherto [Page] keth that question and answere of Dauid;Psal. 119. 9 Where­with shal à yong man redresse his waie? Pro. 22. 6. In ta­king heede to thy worde. Now seeing that as youthis, such is age, as Salomon saith, it folow­eth, that without the worde of God which is the only remedie for wickednesse, the whole life of man, is altogether vncleane. And that vncleane­nes which cleaueth in al men, vntil it be through God his worde washed-awaie, is not so much à bo­dily, as à spiritual & inwarde blot, cōsisting of many partes. Whereof the firste (which is the spring of others) is theignorance both of the trueth and of goodnes; & is compared vnto grosse darkenes, and vnto blindnes, wherebie the whole soule of man, as it were an ouglie monster, gropeth in the darke.

The second is, to haue an erronius opinion of heauenly matters; & to imbrace and loue the same as the most euident trueth. As manie Philoso­phers, and heretikes had, who by stiffe maintei­ning opinions touching heauenlie mysteries, ru­shed-headlong into damnation. Thā which nothing could be more lamentable.

The thirde is, in thought to yeelde vnto wic­ked affections. For as the minde is wickedlie in­formed: So the affection of the minde, raised-vp by sinister iudgement, is carried-awaie into that which is worst.

The fourth is, to consent vnto sinne: after which ensueth an horrible swarme of al manner wicked­nes (as Paul in his first chapter vnto the Romans disputeth) vntil man be vtterlie drowned in euer­lasting [Page] miserie.

From these lamentable spots the soule of man is purged by the cleere fountanes of our Sauiour,Effectes of Gods word. that is by the worde of God. Touching the efficacie of which worde of God,Psal. 19. 7. 8. Dauid speaketh to this effect: The Lawe of the Lord is vndefiled, refreshing the soules; The testimonie of the Lorde is sure, and giueth wisedome vnto the simple; The statutes of the Lord be right, and reioice the heart; The commandement of the Lord is pure, and giueth light vnto the eies. This commendation of Gods word, although it be but briefe, if you respect the wordes; yet is it verie large, if you consider the lessons, and consolations comprised in the same. Which commendation may of right be opposed againste al the furious iudge­mentes of Epicures, Politians, Hypocrites, and Sycophantes. The partes of which commendation are eight, al maruelouslie discerning betwene the word of God, & philosophical or humane doctrines.

The firste; saith he, The Lawe of the Lord is vndefiled, that is, the word of God both in it selfe is pure, as that which proceedeth from God him­selfe the most pure fountane; and also maketh those to bee pure, who giue credite therevnto. But mans doctrine, seeme it neuer so neate, and so cleere, yet is it not in al respectes cleane, neither can it make men cleane. The Philosophie of So­crates, so bewtified by Plato, maie seeme of right before al other Philosophical doctrines, to be the best. (For it containeth verie manie good & right [Page] sentences concerning God his prouidence, and end of man:) yet is it foulie defiled, whē Plato by lawes alloweth an vncleane communitie: and by deed cō ­firmeth more horrible wickednes, than is of vs to be vttered. And therfore both Socrates & Plato whē they endeuor of one side to purge the soule of mā, on the other theie defile the same with an abhomina­ble wickednes. But the word of God, or the sound of the Gospel, as it is in al respectes pure: so it maketh the soule of him, who by a liuelie faith embraceth the Gospel, pure and perfect; it deliuereth him from erronious opinions; it replenisheth him with sound iudgement; and by the Spirite of Christ raiseth-vp pure affections to which when the wil doth assent the actions both internal & outward, as most cleere riuers from à most pure fountaine, do issue-out.

The second, It refresheth the soules, saith Dauid. The soules of men are withered with à most grieuous thirst, neither can theie be comforted or refreshed before theie haue drunke of the healthful springes of Israel, which is the worde of the Gospel. For the conscience of sinne doth euermore augmēt the thirst, which nothing but the liquor of the Gos­pel doth mitigate or take-awaie. Of this water the Prophet Zechariah speaketh, when he saith: And in yt daie shal there waters of life go-out from Ierusalē, Zech. 14, 8. that is ye word of the gospel which is, that to the soule of man, which the most fresh and cleere water is to him that thirsteth. Of this speaketh our Lord in ye fourth of Iohn: whosoeuer drinketh of the water that I shal giue him, Ioh. 4, 14. shal neuer be more a thirst: but the water that I [Page] shal giue him, shalbe in him à wel of water, springing-vp into euerlasting life.

The third, The testimonie of the Lord is sure, that is, the word of god is no deceiteful testimony cō ­cerning the wil of god to man-ward. For, as the voice of the lawe doth witnes that God without respect both of persons, & of natiōs, wil throw together with the deuils his enimies, al obstinate & impenitēt sin­ners into euerlasting darknes, & tormentes: So the voice of the gospel doth testifie how God, for his Sons sake, wil receiue al men, be theie neuer so egregious sinners, into his fauor againe, that the [...]e may be nū ­bred among the heires of eternal blessednes, if so be that they beleeue the gospel, and with à liuely faith rest vpon the Son of God, who hath giuen himselfe à rāsome for the sins of the world. In respect of this vn­changable rule of God his wil cōmended to vs in his word, the word of God is caled, Sure, & the word of the gospel,Ioh. 8, 32. Truth; as when it is said, The truth shal make you free. For the gospel, which is the word of truth, doth offer Christ the deliuerer, of whome it is written,36. If ye son shal mak you free, ye shalbe free indeed The 4. it giueth wisedome vnto the sim­ple. The wise mē of this world know nothing of God his wil as they should; they vnderstād not through­ly his works, which are, to recite the chiefe, his wise­dome in creating of man; his iustice in the fal of mā; his mercie in repairing of mā, his merciful goodnes in conuerting of à sinner; theie are ignorant of the difference betweene the houshoulde of God and o­ther sectes; theie are ignorant of the waie both to auoide eternal miserie, and to obteine euerlasting [Page] happines; and they be ignorant of the manner howe to serue God, which for the most part doth consist in the feare of God, whose wisedome is infinite. But euen simple ones through the sound of the go­spel attaine this wisedome: whereas the greatest, and most mightie of the world doe miserablie ouer­throw themselues by their selfe wisedome. For the word of the Lorde spoken by the Prophet Iremiah shal stand for euer:Iere. 8. 9. They haue reiected the word of the Lord, and what wisedome is in them?

The fifte, The statuts of the Lord be right. This saying is to be opposed against the destinies fained out of Zeno his schole. For it giueth to vnderstande howe God is no accepter of persons, bu [...] indifferent to al according to the rule of his decree. Hee will doubtlesse the saluation of al men, but through the knowledge of the truth. As it is writ­ten,1. Tim. 2. 4. (God) he wil haue al men shalbe saued, and come vnto the knowledge of the truth. He wil also that al impenitent persons, without respect of any, shal vtterlie perish.

The sixt, They reioice the heart. This effect of the Gospel is the chiefest good thing which can betide mankinde in this life. No doctrine of man can tel how to heale the wounds of conscience. For he which is guiltie in his minde of any grieuous crime carrieth about with him day & night à wit­nesse and an accusing conscience, which can bee helped by no Philosophie at al. But the sound one­lie of the gospel it is that applieth the good plaster, and the most present remedie to the wounded con­science [Page] while it testifieth howe Christ died for our sinnes, Rom. 4, 25. and is risen-againe for our iustifica­tion; Rom. 10, 4. how Christ is the ende of the Lawe for righteousnes vnto euerie one that beleeueth; Mat. 11, 28. And howe Christ calleth those which labor vnto himselfe, as vnto the Physition, to which he promi­seth helpe, and that gratis. For he as Augustine both godlie and rightly doth saie, hath made our offences his offences, that his righteousnesse might be our righteousnes. So that when our consciences be sprinkeled with the blood of Christ, as theie are when wee beleeue in him, then are theie purified,Psal, 84. [...]. whereof à wonderful ioie of hearte doth insue. that with Dauid we maie saie, Mine heart and my fleshe doe reioice in the liuing God.

The seuenth, The commaundement of the Lord is pure. This is to be opposed to the Papists, who by certaine diuelish subtilties, doe entangle the worde of God, therebie to terrifie men from the reading of the same. They say the letter, that is, as they falselie expound it, the literal or grāma­tical sense, whereas for al that, it is most true, doth kil; and the spirite that is the allegorical in­terpretation approued of the Pope, doth quicken. But the holie Ghost here by Dauid doth affirme the contrarie, while it pronoūceth the word of God to be cleere, bright, and pure: which indeede is verie true as touching those things belonging vn­to the foundation of Christianitie, & be altogether necessarie vnto saluation.

[Page] The eight, It giueth light vnto the eies. This decareth how mās nature without the word of God inlightning is altogether blind, as that which carri­eth-about with it darkenes, to wit doubting of God, carnal securitie, distrust, false praier of the mind doubting, and flieng from the Lord with infinite o­ther motiōs swaruing from the law of God. But the world perceiueth not this blindnes, but rather hath it in admiration, and price for the smale shadowe of outward discipline whereas the Church admoni­shed by the voice of God his word, doth acknowledg and bewaile her offences, and beggeth of God newe light, righteousnesse, and life. In this praier and meditation of the Gospel, the eies of the minde be more and more inlightened, so that the Sonne of righteousnesse it selfe, euen Christe doth glori­ouslie arise in their heartes; by whose brightnesse we are ledde from endelesse miserie vnto eternal life and blesseenesse. Dauid casting an eye vn­to this most comfortable fruite of God his worde, not without good cause cried-out in this verie Psalme on this wise:Psa. 19, 10. More to bee desired (is the Lawe of God) than golde, yea than much fine golde; Sweeter also than honie, and the honie combe. Psa. 119, 14 And in an other Psalme, I haue had as great delight in the waie of thie testimonies, as in al riches. Here he runneth fee­ling the burden of his sinnes, that he may be vn­loaden of them, as it is in à certaine Psalme, Out of the deepe place haue I called vnto thee, Psa. 130, 1. ô Lorde, &c. Herevnto in his troubles he be­taketh himselfe, according vnto this sentence, [Page] In mine affliction it is my comfort, that this worde doth quicken me. In prosperitie also he flieth here vnto:Psa. 119, 32 I wil runne, saith he, the waie of thie commandements, when thou shalt in­large mine hearte. At his neede it counsaileth him,Psa. 119, 24 as in these wordes, Thie testimonies are my delight and my counsailers; In matters of great importance with Kinges, and mightie men of the world, it ministreth wisedome vnto him, so saith Dauid;Psa. 119, 46 I wil speake of thie testimonies be­fore Kinges, and wil not be ashamed. Aainst the stumbling blocke of the crosse, it strengtheneth him from falling, when he considereth the prospe­ritie of the vngodlie; My feete were almost gone; Psal. 73, 2. 3. 16. 17. 18. my steppes had welneere slipte. For I freated at the foolish, when I sawe the prospe­ritie of ye wicked &c. Then thought I to know this, but it was too paineful for me, vntil I wēt into the Sanctuarie of God, then vnderstood I their end. Surelie thou hast set them in slip­perie places, and castest them downe into de­solation. At the point of death he seeketh life from thence,Psa. 119, 93▪ as witnesse these wordes, I wil ne­uer forget thie preceptes; for by them thou haste quickened me. Psa. 119, 89 O Lorde, thīe worde endureth for euer in heauen. Because life and happines promised by the worde, shal endure for e­uer. To be briefe, out of this worde Dauid lear­neth the manner both howe to escape euerlasting miserie, and also to obteine the eternal felicitie & blessednesse, wherevnto man at the first was cre­ated, [Page] and afterwarde redeemed by Christ.

Seeing nowe the puritie, the necessitie, the cō ­moditie, the glorie, and the fruite of God his word is so great, and so sweete, that it can ioine vs to God, the soueraigne good thing, in whom, we shal euerlastinglie be blessed, at what time as we haue atteined the ende of our condition; doubtlesse theie highlie are to be commended which bestow à por­tion of their goods and riches to the maintenance and propagation of Gods word in the Church. For theie doe wel consider that this ende to al and e­uerie man according to his condition and state, is proposed, namelie to aduance the glorie of God. Which thing theie before others, doe best accom­plish, who studie to vpholde the ministerie of the worde in schooles, and temples. Now what dili­gence you, noble Sir, haue bestowed on this be­halfe, manie doe knowe and theie confesse, whome at this daie you liberallie bring-vp both in this V­niuersitie, and also in other forreigne schooles, to the ende that in these Churches of Denmarke there maie be fit ministers frō time to time, which maie sounde-foorth the pure doctrine of the Go­spel. And assuredlie this is trulie to loue our coun­trie, not onelie while we liue to adorne the same: but after we are dead also to leaue it the better to our posteritie. Wise mē do greatly cōmend the At­tike oath, in which, these words among other were, I wil fight both for religious, & for prophane causes, and that alone and with others; and wil leaue my countrie not the worser; but the [Page] better and more ample to the posteritie. How much more are we bounde so to doe, that are coū ­ted the Citizens of the Church of Christe, the most noble countrie of the righteous, whose honour is more glorious, than was that of Athens, which the Turkes now possesse. And therefore à farre greater glorie it is to leaue this most worthie coū ­trie, I meane the Church of God, not the worser, but the better, and amplified to posterities: which theie doe, who by their wealth doe mainteine, and promote the studies of true doctrin, & of good arts. Such an indeuor was in Dauid, when in à song he saide howe he loued his countrie because of the Church that was therin. Because of the howse of the Lord, Psa. 122, 9. saith he, I wil procure thy welth. This howse which is the Church of God, he preferred before the most glorious Palaties of earthlie Prin­ces,Psal. 84, 10 when he saide, A daie in thie courtes is better then à thousand other-where. I had rather be à doore-keeper in the House of my God, than to dwel in the Tabernacles of wic­kednesse. Which Psalme, whereout these words are taken, because it conteineth à notable com­mendatiō of God his Church, stirreth-vp vnto the loue of the worde; laieth before our eies the beni­fites; depainteth the glorie of the Church; and sheweth the scope proponed therevnto, which is eternal blessednesse, I thought good the last yeare publiquelie in our schoole to expounde the same, therebie to inuite the youth vnto the loue, reading, and meditating of the heauenlie worde, which is [Page] as à burning torch to guide vs in this darkenes in­to the wonderful light of God, and vnto eternal life.

Now the cause that imboldened me to dedi­cate this mine Enarration, written the yeare im­mediatelie past vpon the 84. Psalme, vnto your Honor, was not onelie the greate and singuler good wil you beare toward learning & littered men ge­neralie, which I desire that the whole world should knowe; but also your benefites conferred vpon me and mine particularlie, for which I thought good to giue some token of à grateful minde to your Ho­nor. The which I earnestlie beseech you, to ac­cept in in good part. If the quantitie of our worke be onelie respected, I knowe wel it is far vnmeete for your Magnificence: but if the minde of the gi­uer, and the argument of the matter be waied, I thinke no man wil finde faulte with me for this my dedication. Wherefore, regarde these thinges, my good Lord, and as hitherto I haue had, so hereafter let me not want your fauor; and for my selfe I wil endeuor to be worthie of the same.

Thus fare you wel both in mind and bodie, toge­ther with your wise the L. Metta Rosenkrātz that most noble and chast woman; daughter of the right honorable Sir Olaus Rosenkrantz Knight, Lord of Wallo, sometime à most prudent Senator, of this Kingdome of Denmarke, à mā both for iustice, vp­rightnesse, liberalitie, clemencie, humanitie, cur­tesie, and manie moe virtues euerlastinglie as to be remembred, so to be praised.

[Page] From our studie this 25. of March, in the yeare 1569. Which from the creation of the worlde is the 5539. yeare, wherebie it is manifest that we are fallen into the last parte of the age of the worlde, signified by the sixte daie of the creation of things. For seeing sixe thousand yeares, wherbie the worlds age, according vnto the tradition of the house of Elias, is measured, doe answere to sixe daies of the creation (for à thousand yeares before God are as one daie,2. Pet. 3, [...]) and of the sixt thousand 539. yeares be passed-awaie; it is euident that we are lighten into the after-noone tide of the laste daie of the world. Which time doubtlesse ought of right to put vs in mind of greater watchfulnes, especialie seeing that after the most bright Sunne of the glorious Gospel, (and that at the verie noone of the last daie of this worlde, at which time the doctrine of the Church was by Luther, Philip, and other godlie and lear­ned men, purged) the night and darkenes is nigh at hande. And therefore earnestlie from the heart with the disciples of the Lord let vs praie,

The night doth come, forsake vs not,
ô Christ, wee humblie praie;
Ne suffer thou thie glorious light
To darken, or decaie.

And listen we vnto the Prophet, Iere. 13, 16. which saith, Giue glorie to the Lorde your God before he bring darkenes, and ere euer your feet stumble in the darke mountaines.

[Page] The Lord keepe vs in true godlines, that at the length that long wished Sabbaoth which we looke­for, maie be seene of vs vnto our welfare, blisse, and euerlasting rest, through Christ our onelie mediator, to whome with the Father, and the holie spirite be al praise, honor, and glorie for euer & euer, Amen.

AN ANTITHESIS BE­twene the vane glorie of the worlde, and the true glorie of the faithful.

CAPNION.
The worldlie pompe by proofe I finde
Doth fleete and come like snowe by winde.
Whie trust ye then in vanitie?
HEMMINGIUS.
The godlie ioie doth aie endure,
And as the Liban tree is sure.
Then trust we in the Deitie.
PSALME 84.

1 O Lord of hostes, how ami­able are thy tabernacles!

2 My soule longeth, yea, & fainteth for the courts of the Lorde; mine heart, and my flesh haue reioiced in the li­uing God.

3 For the sparowe hath found an house; and the swallowe à nest for her selfe, where she maie laie her yong: euen thine altars, ô Lorde of ho­stes, my King, and my God.

[Page] 4 Blessed are they which dwel in thine house, euermore thei will praise thee.

5 Blessed is the man, whose strength is in thee, and in whose heart be thy waies.

6 Who goeth by the vale of teares, and diggeth à well: doubtles with blessings shal the teacher be crowned.

7 Theie goe from strength to strength, that God in Zion maie appeare.

8 O Lord God of hostes heare my praier: hearken, ô God of Jacob.

9 Behold, ô God our protector; [Page] and looke vpon the face of thine Annointed.

10 For a daie in thy courtes is better than à thousand els where: I had rather be of no reputatiō in the house of my God, than to dwel in the ta­bernacles of the vngodlie.

11 Because the Lord God is à sunne, and shield: the Lord wil giue grace and glorie: & no good thing wil he depriue them of, which walke inno­centlie.

12 O Lorde of hostes, blessed is the man which trusteth in thee.

CHAP. 1.
The argument, disposition, occasion, and au­ctor of this 84. Psalme.

THis Psalme containeth à singu­lar cōmendation of the Church of God;The argu­ment. the which, as God most dearely doth loue the same, so for her part, she dependeth vp­on him alone; him she praiseth, confesseth, and calleth-vpon. That she may inioy him is al her desire. In him she is most highlie bles­sed and happie.

Of this Psalme there may be made foure partes,The disposi­tion. euerie of which containeth many good 1 lessons: The which are these. The first, A des­cription of the Church, contained in the foure 2 first verses. The second declareth the condi­tion of the teachers in the Church, compre­hended in three other verses, namely, in the 5. 3 6. 7. The third is à praier, whereby Dauid sueth for the defence and preseruation of ye Church, certaine godly reasons being annexed there­vnto▪ whereby the excellencie, and dignitie of the Church is set before our eies, & that in the 4 8. 9. 10. & 11. verses. The last is à conclusion ex­pressed with an admiration, wherein is decla­red, howe the true cause of the Churches feli­citie is a sure cōfidence in God; and that in the last verse.

[Page 5] Moreouer,The occasiō. the occasion why this psalme was written, may seeme to be the banishment of Dauid, through the persecution of his owne sonne Absalon. The which exile or banish­ment was one of those tenne plagues, where­by the adulterie, and murther which Dauid committed,Punishmēts of Dauid. was punished. For as in that one offence of Dauid many sinnes were couched: so was it punished not with one,2. Sam. 13, 14. but with di­diuers plagues: As namely, 1, with the losse of the holie spirite;2. Sam. 13, 28. 29. 2, with à most grieuous wound of conscience; 3, with the deflouring of Thamar his daughter,2. Sam. 15, 1▪ 2. 3. & by his owne sonne Amnon, 4: 5, with the rebellion of Absalon his sonne; 6, with double banishment, from his kingdome, and from the Church; 7, with pollution of holie Matrones his wiues;2. Sam. 15, 14. 15. 16. & 8, with disobedience of his subiectes; 9, with à woe­ful end of his sonne; 10, and with infamie. With these plagues was Dauids reuolting frō God;2. Sam. 16, 21. 22. yelding to Satan Gods enimie; betray­ing of Gods armie;2. Sam. 15, 4. 5. 6. murthering of an inno­cent subiect; rauishing; defiling of him selfe; abusing of an others bodie, with the shipwrack of à good conscience; dissembling; giuing of offence;2. Sam. 18, 9. 10. and exercising of crueltie in his office committed to him of God, most righteouslie punished.

Nowe Dauid being in banishment, and ha­uing no power with other good men at the [Page 6] high feast to come vnto ye tabernacle, wherein the Arke of the Lorde was, and there to praie, and offer sacrifice; with à troubled and pen­siue heart he calleth into minde the difference betweene the Church, wherein God publike­lie is worshipped, and called-vpon, and other companies of men what so euer without the feare of God: and withal by à prophetical spirit is carried more aloft into the contem­plation of the Church of Christ vnder the New testament, à certaine shadow wherof was the old tabernacle, as the Epistle vnto the He­brues doth witnes. In this exile & in this cogi­tation inlightned with ye spirit of prophecie he is caried by great force of mind, both into ad­miratiō of ye felicitie of ye true Church (wherin God freelie is called-vpon, and worshipped) and also into consideration of his owne wret­chednesse, as one to whome there was no en­trance into the Church of God, and companie of good men. As if anie of vs liued among the Turkes, or other prophane people, he would out of doubt more deepelie thinke vpon the felicitie of the true Church, and also deeme them of all others to be most happie, which might at certaine, and appointed times, come with other good men vnto the hearing of Gods word, vnto praier, and to the receiuing of the sacraments.

Wherefore, being admonished by the ex­ample [Page 7] of Dauid, a banished man for his wic­kednesse, let vs learne to be more circumspect through an others harme; let vs beware that we shut not our selues from the gathering to­gether of the Saintes by our sinnes: by earnest and vnfeigned repentance turne we awaie the wrath of God, which warlike tumults, dissenti­on in religion, and infinite wickednesse reig­ning euerie where, doth plainelie shewe l [...]an­geth-ouer our neckes.Two speci­al things to be conside­red in this Psalme.

So oft then as we reade this Psalme, let vs call these two things into mind, first, the felici­tie of the Church, wherein the word is purely preached, and God syncerelie worshipped; & then the miserable case of such as maie not with other good men glorifie God in the con­gregation of the Saints.Auctour of this Psalme.

Last of all, whether this place be written by Dauid him selfe, and so deliuered to the sonnes of Korah to be song; or whether the sonnes of Korah in the name of Dauid did write, and sing the same, as the Hebrues are vncertaine thereof: so leaue we the same in doubt. For it is ynough, for vs to acknowledge the spirit of Christ, to be the true auctor ther­of, and to be written for our instruction, and consolation.

CHAP. 2.
The principal pointes contained in the first part of this Psalme.

[Page 8] THE first part of this Psalme, comprehen­ded in the foure first verses, distinguisheth the true Church from other cōpanies of men; sheweth whence it springeth; howe dearelie God loueth the same; also howe entirelie on the otherside it loueth God; where it maie be sought; what markes it hath; howe happie it is; with what seruice it worshippeth God; and finalie howe it shal continue euerlastinglie, and be immortal.

Nowe in order let vs consider the verses of this part; and seueralie vnfolde, which con­fusedlie we haue noted.

CHAP. 3.
1. The summe of the first verse of this Psalme; 2. who is the Lord of hostes; 3. what is his armie, and victorie.

Vers. 1.‘O LORD OF HOSTES, HOW AMIABLE ARE THY TABERNACLES!’

IN these wordes the Psalmist principalie doth shew,Summe of the first verse. both which is the true Church; and whence it is; and how pretious in the sight of God. The true Church is yt, whose maker is the Lord of hostes, the which he lo­ueth most entirelie. But for the better discour­sing of al these points, we are in order to opē 1 three things. First, who is that Lord of hostes, [Page 9] which is mentioned in this place. Then, for so 2 much as manie congregations of men, and those much differring each from other, doe vsurpe the title of the Church, we must dili­gentlie cōsider who be they which falslie take to themselues this name, and which is the true Church. Last of all, whie the true Church is so 3 amiable, and deare to God, or to the Lord [...] of hostes.

Who then is the Lord of hostes?The Lord of hostes who; whie doth he cal him selfe the Lord of hostes? And what is the vse of this matter being knowne? Out of certaine places of the Scripture we wil gather who is the Lord of hostes, whereof the Psal­mist here maketh mention. In the second of Samuel it is said,2. Sam. 5, 10▪ Dauid prospered and grewe, for the Lord of hostes was with him. Psal. 59, 5. And Psalme 59. Euen thou, O Lord God of hostes. These two te­stimonies doe shewe, if we marke the Hebrue text,The whole Trinitie the Lord of ho­stes. howe that God which is one in essence, and three in persons, is the Lord of hostes. For in the former place, the proper name of God taken from his essence, namelie Iehouah, is put; in the latter the plural number Elohim, whereby à pluralitie of persons, as the Father, the Sonne, and the holie Ghost, is signified. But that we should not thinke there be anie moe persons than three, the Prophet Esaiah tea­cheth vs, when he saith,Isa. 6, 2. 3. And the Seraphims cried one to an other, and saide, Holie, holie, holie is the [Page 10] Lord of hostes.

So that this title is proper to the whole Tri­nitie. Notwithstanding, bicause the second person in the Godhead, namelie ye euerlasting word, or Sonne of God, was sent to breake the strength of Satan, & for ye redemption of man­kinde,Our Sauiour Christ is the Lord of ho­stes. this great title is giuen to him in manie places; as in the 24. Psalme, Who is this King of glorie? The Lord of hostes is the King of glorie. Here doubtles Christ,Psal. 24. 10. a figure of whome was the arke of the couenant, is signified to be that glorious King. And in the Prophet Esaiah, the Lord of hostes is saide to dwell in Zion, Isa. 8, 8. which certainlie must be vnderstood of Christ.

Nowe,Why our sa­uiour Christ is called the Lord of ho­stes. the Scripture ascribeth this glori­ous name to Christ, because he is the chiefe captaine in the citie of God against the citie of Satan, that is, in the Church against the world, and the diuel. For he alone is, as the most mightie, so the chiefest hed, and captaine of al armies both celestial and earthlie. And therefore in the forementioned psalme he is called,Psal. 24, 8. The Lord mightie in battell. For he is not idle, but fighteth couragiouslie; he yeeldeth not, but ouercommeth; he fleeth not, but tri­umpheth; and that not for his owne cause, but for the whole citie of God. And therefore in the 72. psalme, the chiefest honour is ascribed to him,Psal. 72, 19. Blessed be his glorious Name for euer; and let al the earth be filled with his glorie. Yet ga­thereth [Page 11] he an hoste to him selfe, not because he is weake of him selfe, and of smal power: but for that he wil communicate his owne glorie after a sort with his soldiers.The s [...]ldiers of Christ in his spiritual warfare.

But what be those armies? In the first place and order are placed those celestial spirits, which, in respect of their seruice which they do to their King,1. The 1. or­der of heauē lie warriars. are called Angels. For they are al ministring spirits (saith Paul) for their sakes, which shal be heires of saluation. Heb. 1, 14. Because while this world doth last there shal be Angels, at­tending vpon the busines of the kingdome of Christ; which notwithstanding is not the end of their nature, but a temporal seruice: But af­ter the general iudgement with the elect of God, hauing attained à perfect conquest, they shall euerlastinglie triumph-together. The number, and office of those Angels no man hath more plainlie expressed, than Daniel did, who beheld them,Dan. 7, 10. Thousand thousands ministred vnto him, and ten thousand thousands stoode be­fore him.

The fight, and victorie which the Lord of hostes and his Angels haue got, is described in the Reuelation on this wise: Reuel. 12, 7. Michael, and his angels fought against the dracon, and the dra­con fought,8. and his angels. But they preuailed not, neither was their place found anie more in heauen. And the great dracon that old serpent,9. called the diuel and satan, was cast out, which deceiueth al [Page 12] the world: he was euen cast into the earth, and his angels were cast-out with him.10. Then I heard à loud voice, saieng, Nowe is saluation in heauen, & strength & the kingdome of our God, and the po­wer of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast-downe, which accuseth them before our God daie and night.11. But they ouer come him by the bloud of the Lambe, and by the word of their te­stimonie.

Touching Michael,Michael what signi­fieth. which is saide in this place to be the captaine of the warre, it is the Sonne of God our Lord Iesus Christ, as mai [...] be gathered both out of Daniel, and also from the etymologie of the name. For Michael is as much, as Who is like God? The Angels therfore following the conduction and standard of Michael, that is the Lord of hostes, are celesti­al spirits.

In the second order of these armies,2. Order of spiritual sol­diers. are godlie teachers, waging battel with the king­dome of the dracon, that is, of the diuel, and with his angels, yt is, with defendors of idols, and blasphemies. Such in times passed were Moses, Ioseph, Daniel, the Prophets, and the Apostles; and manie godlie Ministers of the word in the Church afterward. Whose wea­pons are not carnal, but spiritual. For so doth Paul saie,2. Cor. 10, 3. 4. 5. We do not war after the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare be not carnal, but mightie through God to cast downe holdes, casting downe [Page 13] the imaginations, and euerie high thing that is ex­alted against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captiuitie euerie thought to the obedience of Christ, Ministers weapons. that is, the weapons of godlie teachers in the Church, be the verie word of God; the power of the holie Ghost in the word; and earnest praier.

In the third order of the Lordes hoste be godlie hearers of the word, 3. Order of spiritual sol­diers. who for Gods glorie, and their owne saluation fight against the flesh, sinne, the world, and the diuel. Their war, and weapons in the Epistles vnto the E­phesians be described on this wise: Ephes. 6, 12, For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against prin­cipalities, against powers, and against the worldlie gouernors, the princes of the darkenes of this world, against spiritual wickednes in the hie places.13. For this cause take vnto you the whole armor of God, that ye maie be able to resist in the euil daie, and hauing finished al things,14. stand fast. Stand therfore, and your loines gird about with veritie, and hauing on the brest plate of righteousnes,15. And your feete shod with the preparation of the Gospel of peace. Aboue al take the shield of faith,16. wherewithal ye maie quench al the firie dartes of the wicked,17. and take the helmet of saluation, and the sword of the spirit,18. which is the word of God. And praie alwaie with al manner praier and supplication in the spi­rit.1. Tim. 1, 18. 19. Or in fewer wordes, as Paul in an other place writeth, Fight à good fight, hauing faith, & [Page 14] à good conscience, which some haue put awaie, and as concerning faith, haue made shipwracke.

In the fourth place be euerie particular man in his vocation.4. order of spiritual sol­diers. Exod. 38. it is said, that the wo­men did assemble, Exod. 38, 8. and came together at the doore of the Tabernacle, that is, they did those things which were enioined them to doe. Euerie man therefore fighteth vnder the banner of Christ, when stoutlie in ye feare of God he doth those things, which in respect of his calling, he is bound to do. Then both teachers, and hearers also be the good soldiers of the Lord, when they doe their duties godlie, and diligentlie. After which sort we maie iudge of all other callings, warranted by the word of God.

Herevnto,5. order of celestial sol­diers. if you thinke good, you maie ad à fift order, namelie ye celestial armie, or hoste, as the Sunne, Moone, and the Stars: the which are therefore saide to be the hoste of the cap­taine Christ, because, after their facion, they reproue darkenes, declare the glorie of Christ, and prouoke both Angels, and men, by their example as it were, to glorifie God euermore.

Nowe of those things which hitherto we haue spoken of ye Lord of hostes;The vse of al contained in this chap­ter. of his fight; armies, and victorie, there is a double vse. For as they confirme, comfort, and encourage the godlie fighting vnder Christ the captaine: so do they throw downe, terrefie, and confound the wicked. Wherefore being admonished, let [Page 15] vs ioine our selues through faith and obediēce to Christ the captaine, and with true puritie of minde to these vnspotted spirites, beeing thoroughlie persuaded, that he which figh­teth an honest fight in faith and à good con­science,1. Tim. 1, 18 shal receaue an incorruptible crowne of glorie, which Christ our Lord, capitane, and champion hath promised to vs. For as true victorie consisteth in the blood of the Lambe, and worde of the testimonie: so they who are sprinkled with this blood, which is then done when we beleeue in Christ according to the word of the testimonie, shal trulie obteine victorie.

CHAP. 4.
1. Against those which wil be counted, and yet are not the true Church; 2. particularlie against the Iewes, that what soeuer things were written of the Messiah by Moses, and the Pro­phets, are fulfilled in Christ.

NOwe, for so much as manie assemblies of men vsurpe ye title of the Church (for that was it which we proposed in ye second placeAboue. chap. 3. pag. 9) we are diligentlie to consider, who be they which will needs be called, and yet be not the Church; and also which is the true Church of God: that al other congregations auoided, we maie ioine our selues to the true Church.

[Page 16] The Iewes supposing the Messiah,The Iewes. whome as yet al in vaine they looke for to pertainè vnto them alone, doe proudlie contemne al o­ther congregations, and hoast-abroad howe they are the true Church of God.

The Mahomets,The Turks. or Turkes, because their dominion is verie great which they haue in the world, chalenge the name of the Church to them selues, and thinke that none but they are ye Church.The Mus­couites. The Muscouites likewise brag that they are the Church. The Pope of Rome and his fauorers defend with fire and sword,Papistes. howe the Catholique Church is with them. Epicures they passe for no religion,Epicures. but that which serueth for their pleasure, and idlenes.

Betweene manie Iewes and vs there is great controuersie about the Messiah,Of the Mes­siah Christ the Sauiour of the world. of whom who so conceiueth amisse, without al doubt he is not of the true Church, but vnder the king­dome of Satan. We for our parts hauing lear­ned the same out of the word of God, doe ac­knowledge and confesse Iesus the sonne of Marie the virgine, borne at Bethlehem à citie of Dauid, according to the foresaiengs of the Prophets, in the yeeres after the worlds crea­tion 3962. Augustus the Emperor then raig­ning, and afterward put to death vnder Pon­tius Pilate, this Iesus, I saie, we confesse to be the true Messiah, to be verie God and verie man, the true mediator betweene God and [Page 17] man, and the onlie Sauiour of al mankinde, in which respectes we serue him, and worship him.

This Iesus did manie Iewes both acknow­ledge and worship, at such time as he liued in this world, Iosephus lib. 18. cap. 4. which thing Iosephus doth testifie in these wordes: Then liued Iesus, à wise man, if yet we maie cal him à meere man without sinne, he was à worker of strange miracles, and à teacher of those which gladly do receiue the truth, and had manie followers, as well Iewes as Gentiles. This Christ was he, whome notwithstanding that Pilate had iudged him to the crosse, being accused by the chiefe of our nation, yet ceassed they not to loue him, who from the beginning had so done. For the third daie he appeared quicke vnto them, in so much that by the inspiration of God they fore-told this, and other things of him, and euen til this daie the stocke of Christians, so called of him, decaieth not. But verie manie Iewes as at that time, so now, euen of meere enuie, do not acknowledge as we do, this Iesus to be the Messiah.Opinions of Christ. Of which some do vt­terly denie that the Messiah is yet come; others cō ­uicted by the scriptures, & prophets, about the time of the comming of the Messiah, do in deede confesse that the Messiah is come, and was borne vnder Herod: yet (saie they) he is hid for the sinnes of the people, and that, as some report, in Zion with the Angels; as others beyond the Caspion mountaines; and as others, that he goeth à begging about the [Page 18] world, and shal manifest himselfe, at the pleasure of God. For seeing so many prophecies of the Prophets do agree together vpon that time, the learneder sort of the Iewes of that age were throughlie per­suaded that in their time the Messiah should come. Whereof it came to passe, that many by occasion of the tyme professed them-selues to be the Messiah, when afore that time no man went about the same.Iudas the Galilean. Ioseph Ben­zara. Among which was one Iudas the Galilean, Ioseph Benzara, who was bold vnder the name of the Messiah, to rebell against Adrian the Empe­rour, whom verie manie Iewes did followe: but the end declared his vanitie.Barcozibas. So was one Barcozi­bas a skilfull captaine, by reason of his often victo­ries, supposed to be the Messiah. In which opinion many stood a long while, til at last he also was puni­shed by Adrian for his wickednesse. I ouerslip those whom Foelix the gouernour of Iudea punished. For it was a common thing at that time, the which the Prophets assigned to the birth of Christ, to seduce the people, especialy, seeing they beleeued the Messiah should come for none other intent, than by force of armes to bring other nations vnder his subiection. By which meanes they should abound in al kind of pleasures, and store of al things, the Isra­elites then liuing being brought againe into their natiue and promised countrie.

Seeing now the Iewes haue so grosse an opinion concerning the end of the comming of the Messiah, they do nothing differ from the [Page 19] verie swine, and Lions: whereof those delight to wallowe in the mire of filthie lust: and these mightily to suppresse other beastes, that theie alone may seeme to beare the swaie. Whose pestilent errour is condemned through-out the whole Scripture. For the whole scripture doeth testifie how the Messiah shall appeare, not to wage battell with men, like some Her­cules, or great Alexander: but, according to the first promise, to set-vpon the olde serpent; to abolish sinne & death; to repaire the image of God in man, which through sinne was put­out; and to rewarde his owne, that is, the faith­ful with euerlasting righteousnes, & immor­talitie, that so, being ioyned to God in perfect loue, theie might be happie and blessed: wherin the true and proper end of man doetli consist.

But, the better to arme our selues against the deceiptfull Iewes, obey we the wordes of our Lord Christ, saying, Iohn. 5, 3 [...] Search the Scriptures, there are they which testifie of me. And Peter saith, 2. Pet. 1. 19. We haue a most sure word of the Prophets, to the which ye do well that yee take heede, as vnto à light that shineth in à darke place.

But that we may the more soundly and substantially refel the Iewish errour, let vs include the whole matter within the compasse of one argument, on this four me:

He alone without all controuersie,Maior. of cer­taine [Page 20] truth, yea, and by the confession of all men is the true and onlie Messiah, to whome all the prophecies of the Prophets doe point; and to whome properlie whatsoeuer by Mo­ses and other holie Prophets of God hath ben fore-told of the Messiah, doth agree.

But the prophecies of al the Prophets doe point vnto Iesus the sonne of Marie the vir­gine;Minor. and to this Iesus alone, whatsoeuer by Moses and other holie Prophets hath bene fore-told of the Messiah, doth agree.

Therefore none but Iesus the sonne of the virgine Marie,Conclusion. is the true and onlie Messiah.

The Maior none will denie. The Minor is in controuersie betweene vs and the Iewes; which if we once shal proue, both the error of the Iewes wil be manifest, and our faith confirmed.

And seeing, as Augustine saith, The strength of religion consisteth in this, howe al things which fel-out in Christ, haue bene fore-told, we wil shew in fewe words, howe al the oracles of the Pro­phets doe agree to Iesus Christ alone, and to none other: and then afterward we purpose to refute such things as the blinded Iewes doe obiect vnto vs.

Iesus Christ in the reigne of Augustus the Emperor was borne of the vnspotted virgine, in Bethlehem à citie of Dauid. Here (as Luke recordeth) both the time, the place, the mo­ther, [Page 21] and the stocke of the Messiah borne, are declared; and all these doe answere vnto the fore-saiengs of the Prophets.

The time was signified by Iaakob the pa­triarch, The time of Christ his birth fore­told by Ia­cob the Pa­triarch: and by Daniel the prophet. The scepter shal not depart from Iudah, nor à law-giuer from betweene his feete, vntil Siloh come, and the people shal be gathered vnto him. Furthermore, Daniel in his 9. Chapter saith: Seuentie weekes are determined vpon thy people, & vpon thine holie citie, to finish the wickednes,Gen. 49, 10. and to seale vp the sinnes,Dan. 9, 24. and to reconcile the iniquitie, and to bring in euerlasting righteousnes, & to seale vp the vision and prophecie, and to annoint the most holie.25. Knowe therefore and vnderstand, that from the going-foorth of the commandement to bring againe the people, and to build Ierusalem vn­to Messiah the prince, shal be seuen weekes, and three score and two weekes, and the streete shal be built againe, and the wall euen à troublous time. And after three-score and two weekes,26. shal Messi­ah be slaine; and his people that wil denie him, shal not be at al.27. And he shal confirme the coue­nant with manie for one weeke; and in the middes of the weeke, he shal cause the sacrifice and the o­blation to ceasse.

This prophecie of Daniel is verie notable, which most euidentlie putteth the verie time of the comming of Messiah before our eies. One weeke doth comprehend seuen yeeres. Therefore 69. make 489. yeeres. For so manie [Page 22] yeares there came betweene the going-out of the worde touching the building-againe of Ierusalem vntil the Baptisme of Christ. Then in the middle of the weeke Christ both prea­ched, and was crucified. Then, about 40. yeres afterward, followed the vtter abrogation of Moses gouernement according to the wordes of the Prophet. The computation whereof reade in the cōmentaries of Philip Melancton vpon Daniel, in Functius, and in Galatine.

Bethlehem, The place. the place where Christe was borne, Isai. 5. 2. was long afore pointed at by the Pro­phet Micah. And thou Bethlehem Ephrathah art litle to be among the thousandes of Iudah: yet of thee shall he come forth vnto me, that shall be the ruler in Israel, whose goinges foorth haue bin from the beginning and from euerlasting.

That he should be borne of a virgin,The mother Isai. 7, 14. Isaiah did fore-tell, when he said, The Lord himselfe will giue you à signe. Behold, the Virgin shal con­ceiue and beare à Sonne, and she shall call his name Immanuel. Ier. 31, 22. And Ieremiah, The Lord hath crea­ted à newe thing in the earth, A woman shal com­passe à man, That is, Marie the virgine shall compasse Christ perfect for wisedome in her virgines wombe. That which Isaiah calleth à signe, is to Ieremiah à newe thing. For it was an vncouth thing for à virgine to beare à childe.

The stocke wherof he should be borne was [Page 23] signified in that they went vnto Bethlehem to be tasked.The stocke, or kinred of Christ. For euerie man went into his owne citie. Seeing then Ioseph, and Marie went into a citie of Dauid, he shewed howe they were of Dauids kinred. For so it was pro­mised to Dauid, that of his seede Christe should be borne.Psal. 132. 11. Of the frute of thi [...] bodie, will I set vpon thie throne.

Christ being borne,Wisemen. wise-men comming from out of Persea, brought with them Gold, Frankincense, & mirthe, according to the pro­phesie of Esaiah,Isai. 60, 6. From Sheba theie shal come, they shall bring golde, and incense, and shew forth the prayses of the Lorde.

Through the direction of à starre the wise­men came vnto the place where Marie the mother, & Ioseph with the childe Iesus were: of which starre Balaam in the Booke of Num­bers long afore prophecied,Num b. 24. 17. There shall come à star of Iaakob, and à scepter shall rise of Israel. It is verie likelie the wise-men knew this pro­phesie, and seeing the starre, thought howe he was come whome it figured.

The childe ye eight day was circumcised.Circumcisi­on of Christ. For his wil was to be vnder the Law, yt he might redeeme such as were vnder ye law; & was cal­led Iesus, which signifieth à Sauiour. Wherbie the office of the Messiah is declared, as by Im­manuell both his diuine & humane nature. The name & type wherof we see went afore in [Page 24] Ioshua the sonne of Nun. For as Ioshua the sonne of Nun brought the Iewes into the cor­poral and temporal land of promise: so Iesus Christ, the true Ioshua, that is the Sauiour, shal bring al the godlie into that eternal and hea­uenlie countrie, that the truth maie answere to the shadowe.

After 40. daies he was offered in the tem­ple, Hag. 2, 8. as Haggaie had promised, And the desire of al nations shal come, and I wil fil this house with glorie,10. saith the Lord of hostes. The glorie of this last house shal be greater than the first. Simeon perceaued the euent to answer vnto this pro­phecie, Luke 2, 32. when he saide, A light to be reuealed to the Gentiles, and the glorie of thy people Israel.

The child was caried by his parents awaie in­to Egypt,Flight into Egypt. the better to auoid ye crueltie of He­rod, where he cōtinued vntil the death of He­rod; yt as the child-hod of corporal Israel, that is, of ye people of Israel borne there, was consu­med in Egypt, so the spiritual Israel might be spent. And as the corporal Israel was caled out of Egypt vnto the land of their bodilie free­dome: so the spiritual Israel might be called vnto the libertie of the minde. In Hosea the Prophet it is thus written,Hos. 11, 1. When Israel was à childe then I loued him, and called my sonne out of Egypt. If this nowe be spoken of the true Isra­el, he is Christ: if meant of the carnall, it is à fi­gure, hauing the force of à Prophet. Hetherto [Page 25] that also of Isaiah belongeth,Isa. 16, 1. Send à Lambe to the ruler of the world from the rocke of the wilder­nes, vnto the mountaine of the daughter Zion.

Iesus and his parents being returned,Christ à Nazaris. dwelt with them in Nazaret of Galile. Whereof he was called à Nazareth. Wherin he fulfilled the figure of Samson:Samson à figure of Christ. which Samson both by his life and deedes, did represent our Sauiour Christ to ye Iewes. Hence ye Angel of the Lord being sent vnto his parentes before he was borne, said,Iudges 13, 5 he should be à Nazarit vnto the lord. And in Isaiah,Isai. 11, 1. There shal come à rod foorth of the stocke of Ishai, and à graffe shal growe out of his rootes. So that the Lord would haue him dwel in Nazareth, that we might vnderstand howe he was the true Nazar, or the most holie and righteous Nazarite, the floure and seed of Da­uid, which sanctifieth the faithful.

Being twelue yeeres of age at the feast of ye Passeouer, he with Marie and Ioseph ascended vnto Ierusalem, sat among the Doctors, whom he heard teaching, and proposed questions to them, in so much that such as heard him, mar­ueiled much at his wisedome, and answeres. Here would ye Messiah being yet in his child­hood, spread abroad some beames of his diui­nitie, thereby that the Iewes both might con­iecture, that in him there lurked some-thing more than men commonlie haue, and also cal into mind the Propheticall office of the Messi­ah [Page 26] Whereof Esaie among others on this wise speaking of the Messiah,Isai 61, 1. doth saie, He hath sent me to preach good tidinges.

And forsomuch as the Passeouer was insti­tuted,Passeouer whie insti­tuted. not onelie that the Iewes might cal in­to remembrance the passage of theire Elders through the red sea by the conduction of Mo­ses, but also that the Teachers might admo­nish the people of the spiritual Passeouer, to wit from the kingdome of Satan into the king­dome of God, by the conduction of the Mes­siah, there is no doubt but this question was handled betweene Christ and those doctors, where-of sprang that admiration and wonde­ring. Againe by this deede of his yet in his childe-hoode Christ would teach what their duetie is who haue determined to folowe Christe. For as he sate in the Temple: so his wil is that such as folowe him should rest in holie thinges, and bring if they would profite in his schoole, à mind voide of world­lie cares.

Then from the 12. yeare vntil the 30. yeere of his age he was subiect to his parentes,Luke 2, 51. 52. En­creasing in wisedome, and stature, and in fauour with God & with man. Isa. 61, 1. And thus the whole time of his life,The poore most readie to imbrace the Gospel. was consumed among the poore & simple men of heart; and this was it which Esaiah saide, He hath sent me to preach good ti­dinges [Page 27] vnto the poore. For they alwayes were most in the fauour of God, that is, theie haue bin more apt to receiue the lawe and com­mandementes of the Lorde, than such as are swollen vp in respect either of their wealth, or of their power, or of their learning, or wit.

Nowe when he was entered into the 30. yeare of his age, Iohn the sonne of Zacharias, hauing receaued à commandement from the Lorde concerning baptisme of repentance, went forth as à fore-runner, Luke. 3, 1. 2. 3. and cried, Repent: for the kingdome of heauen is at hand; prepare ye the way of the Lord. And this was it which the Prophet Malachie fore-tolde, Matt. 3, 1. 2. when he saide, Beholde I will send my messenger, and he shal prepare the waie before thee;Mal. 3, 1. and the Lorde whome yee seeke, shal speedily come to his Tem­ple: euen the messenger of the couenant whome yee desire, beholde he shal come, saith the Lorde of Hostes.

Afterward he was baptized of Iohn,Baptisme of our Sauiour Christ. and the holie Ghoste descended and lighted vp­pon him like à doue. For so it went before in the figure.Matt. 3. 13. 14. & Moses telleth howe the doue sent out of the ship returned in the euening with an oliue leafe in her bil,Luke 3, 21. 22. which was à to­ken of attonement.Gen. 8, 10. 11. For Noah therebie knewe that the wrath of the Lord was ap­peaced, [Page 28] and that the waters were abated from of the earth. After which maner the Doue here doth testifie howe he was present, by whome the wrath of the Father was peaced, according to the words of the Father,Matt. 3. 17. This is my beloued sonne, in whome I am wel pleased.

His tentation of the diuel answereth at the lest wise to that which was prophecied in ge­neral,Tentation of Christ. And thou shalt bruise his head, Matt. 4. 1. 2. & that is, the heele of the seed of the woman. He fasted four­tie daies,Gen. 3, 15. and fourtie nightes: but the figure of the same went before in Moses,Matt. 4. 2. and Elias.Exod. 34, 28

In the three yeeres following he began his raigne by teaching, 1. King. 19, 8 and working miracles, His prea­ching. ac­cording to the fore-saieng of the Prophet E­saiah, Isai. 61, 1. The spirit of the Lord God is vpon me, ther­fore hath the Lord annointed me: he hath sent me to preach good tydings vnto the poore, to binde-vp the broken hearted, to preach libertie to the cap­tiues, & to them that are bound, the opening of the prison,2. to preach the acceptable yeere of the Lord, and the daie of vengeance of our God, to comfort al that mourne,3. to appoint vnto them that mourne in Zion, and to giue vnto them beautie for ashes, the oile of ioie for mourning, the garment of glad­nesse for the spirit of heauinesse, that they might be called trees of righteousnesse, the planting of the Lord,Isai. 35, 4. that he might be glorified. And againe, Saie vnto them that are fearefull, Be you strong, feare not: behold, your God commeth with vengeance, [Page 29] euen God with a recompence, he wil come and saue you.5. Then shal the eies of the blinde be lightened, and the eares of the deafe be opened.6. Then shal the lame leap as an hart, and the dumme mans tongue shal sing. What plainer thing could be spoken of the doctrine and miracles of the Messiah? The Prophet as it were with a finger, pointeth to the very person of the Messiah by most eui­dent tokens. Yet doe not the miserable Iewes, carried-awaie by the stormes of their affecti­ons, confesse the truth. Vnto these tokens de­claring the true Messiah, he sendeth the two disciples of Iohn, who demanded of him, sai­eng, Luke. 7, 20. 22. Art thou he that should come, or shal we waite for an other? Go your waie (saith he) and shew Iohn what things ye haue seene and heard, that the blinde see, the halt goe, the leapers are cleansed, the deafe heare, the dead rise-againe, and the poore re­ceaue the Gospel. Hence came that wondering in the blind man, Iohn 9, 30. Ioh. 9. Doubtles this is à mar­ueilous thing, that ye knowe not whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eies.

The time of his punishment,His riding roialie into Ierusalam. which was appointed for him by the Father, drawing nigh, he entered into Ierusalem vpon an asse, whome much people met,Matt. 21, 1. 2. 3. & and receaued with roial pompe, whereof Zacharie doth saie, Re­ioice greatlie, Zech. 9, 9. ô daughter Zion, shout for ioie, ô daughter Ierusalem, behold, thy King commeth vnto thee, poore, and riding vpon an asse. As he [Page 30] came the people shouted, and strawed bowes of palme trees in the waie for à signe of an e­uerlasting kingdome,Matt. 21. 9. and cried, Hosanna the sonne of Dauid, blessed, be he that commeth in the Name of the Lorde, Hosanna thou which art in the hiest heauens. The which we read was fore­tolde also in à certaine Psalme,Psa. 118, 25 26. 27. O Lord we praie thee saue nowe, blessed be he that commeth in the Name of the Lord, binde the sacrifice with cordes vnto the hornes of the altar.

The daie before he should suffer,Supper of the Lorde. hauing eaten the Paschal lambe according to the Lawe, he instituted the supper of his bodie and bloud,1. Cor. 10, 3. 4. à figure whereof, as Paule wit­nesseth, went before in the Manna, and in the rocke wher-out flowed water in ye wildernes.

Then after à long sermon in the presence of his disciples,Christ be­traied. and praier, as Adam in the garden departed from God, so Christ in the garden was betraied of his owne disciple Iu­das for thirtie peeces of siluer:Luke 22. 47 which thing the Prophets kept not secrete.1. Sam. 21. 7. For as Doëg the bewraier of Dauid,1. Sam. 22. 9. was à type of Iudas the traitor:Psal. 52, 1. so Zecharie speaketh of the wages that was paied,Zech. 11. 12 13. So they weighed for my wages thirtie peeces of siluer. And the Lord saide vnto me, caste it vnto the potter: à goodlie price, that I was valued at of them.

Straight-waie being taken, Christ for­saken of his verie disci­ples. all his disciples forsooke him, whereof Zecharie in his 13. [Page 31] Chapter, thus writeth, Arise, ô sworde vpon my shepheard, and vpon the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hostes;Zech. 13. 7. smite the shepheard, and the sheepe shal be scattered.

Then folowed scoffinges,Christ af­flicted in his bodie. spittinges, buf­fets, contumelies, and much vexation after he was taken,Mat. 26. 67 68. of which Isaiah in his 50. Chap­ter, I gaue my backe vnto the smiters, and my cheekes to the nippers: Isai. 50, 6. I hid not my face from shame and spitting.

After that he was hanged on wood,Christ cru­cified. or vp­on the crosse. For manie times among the Fa­thers saluation hath come by woode.Gen. 7, 1. 2. & The i­mage and prophecie of this wood was in the arch of Noah;Exod. 15, 25 and in the wood which Moses threwe into the most bitter waters,Eccle. 38. 5 wherebie they became most pleasant. By this figure the virtue of ye crosse of Christ is notablie depain­ted. For as the most bitter waters by the wood throwen there-into were made most sweete, and pleasaunt: so nothing is there, but wil be most comfortable to vs, if the wood of Christ his crosse, namelie faith on Christ crucified be added as à sause. But à more excellent figure is in the wood, wheron the brazen serpent was hanged.Num, 21. 8. 9. For as Moses at the cōmandement of God in ye wildernes set-vp on high to ye view of al the Israelites the brazen serpent which hong vpon wood, yt such as were wounded to the death of serpents might be healed therby: [Page 32] So Christ was lifted vp vpon the wood, and shewen as it were to al nations, that as manie as were wounded vnto the death by the old serpent the diuel, might be saued, looking and trusting on him.Gal. 3, 13. So then Christ hong on the crosse, and was made à cursse for vs, to redeeme vs from the cursse of the serpent, which he through sinne brought vpon mankind. There­fore it is written,Deut. 21, 33 Curssed is euerie one that han­geth on tree. Gal. 3, 13. After this manner Paul vnto the Galathians applieth the type to ye truth. Here ye humanitie of Christ seemed most vile, & wor­ser than the basest sort of men, in so much as his verie friendes and familiars did flie awaie,Matt. 26. 56 being dismaied and abashed. Whereof it was prophecied in à psalme,Psal. 22, 6. But I am à worme, and not à man, à shame of men, and the contempt of the people. Psal. 88, 8. And in the 88. psal. Thou hast put-awaie mine acquaintance far fro me, and made me to be abhorred of thē. Yea, at that time he which was the fairest among men, so lost al grace of beau­tie, that it was à verie hard thing to know him, according to the prophecie of Isaiah, Beholde, my seruant shal prosper, Isai. 52, 13. he shal be exalted and ex­tolled, 14. and be verie hie. As manie were astonied at thee (his visage was so deformed of men, and his forme of the sonnes of men) so shal he sprincle ma­nie nations, the Kings shal shut their mouthes at him: for that which had not bene tolde them, shal they see, and that which they had not heard, shal [Page 33] they vnderstande. Isai. 53, 2. And afterward, He hath nei­ther forme nor beautie, whē we shal see him, there shal be no forme that we shoulde desire him. 3 Hee is despised and reiected of men, he is à man ful of so­rowes and hath experience of infirmities; wee hid as it were our faces from him, and was despised, and we esteemed him not. Lo howe playnlie the Prophet hath fore-tolde how it should come to passe that the Iewes in respect of his vile punishment, whereof themselues were the autors, shoulde contemne the Messiah.

The high Priestes and the princes of the people spake il and rayled of him, Christ rai­led vpon. nodding their heades at Iesus fastened to the crosse, as the Prophet Hosea prophecied, Hos 7. 13. I haue re­deemed them,Psal. 22 13 yet they haue spoken lies against me. And Psalme 22. They gape vpon me with their mouthes,16. as à ramping and roaring Lion. Againe, Doges haue compassed me, and the assemblie of the wicked haue inclosed me.Psal. 35. 15. 16. And again Psalme 35. They had me in derision, and gnashed their teeth at mee.

Zecharie also prophecied of his handes, Christ nai­led to the crosse. & side that were pearced, Chapter 12. They shal looke vpon him whome they haue peirced,Zech. 12, 10 And Psal. 22.Psa. 22, 16. They peirced mine hands and my feete.

In his extreeme tormentes he cried, My God, Matth. 27, 46. my God whie hast thou forsaken me? Which thing long afore was fore-told by Dauid in ye 22. Psalme;Psa. 22. 1. which Psalme is as it were à certain [Page 34] Epitome of ye passion of Christ. When he was about to yeld vp ye Ghost, he vsed ye words of Dauid,Luk. 13, 46. who carried à type of Christ himselfe, Into thine hands, Psal. 31, 5. Lord, I commend my spirit, as it is in the 31. Psalme.

His hanging betweene theeues was al­so foreshewed by the Prophet Isaiah in his 53. chapter,Isai. 53, 12. where he saith, He was counted with the transgressors.

How Christ praied for his crucifiers Isaiah in the same chapter fore-telleth,Isai. 53, 12. He bare the sinne of manie, and praied for the trespassers.

As Iesus was vpon dieng, Mat. 27, 45 51. 52. &c. there was darke­nes ouer al the lande, as though the sunne would haue lost his light, when as notwith­standing the Moone was at the ful. The earth also terriblie did quake, according to the pro­phecie of Ioël, Ioel. 3, 15. The Sunne and Moone shal be darkened, and the starres shal with-drawe their light.16. The Lord also shal roare out of Zion, and vtter his voice from Ierusalem, and the heauens and the earth shal shake.Amos. 8, 9. And Amos in his 8. chapter doth say, And in that daie, saith the Lord God, I wil euen cause the sunne to go downe at noone: and I wil darken the earth in the cleere day.

The Lord was crucified without the gate,Place where Christ was crucified. euen as the sacrifice that was brought with­out the campe for the purgation and sanctifi­ing of the people, by the whole multitude of [Page 35] the sonnes of Israël,Num. 19, 2. as may appeare Num. 19. For the red kowe in the sight of all was killed,Heb. 13, 11. and of the blood thereof, and of the ashes, and water, purgations were made.

Vnto the speedinesse of the Lords punish­ment (who was taken about night and led vnto the hie Priestes,Christ with sped execu­ted vnto death. the next morning ear­lie carried vnto the iudgement hal of the pre­sident, and at noone crucified) belongeth the figure of the paschal lambe,Iohn. 1, 29. wherof Christ al­so is oftentimes called à lambe.

But that it maie the better appeare howe the bodie aunswereth to the shadowe,Relation be­tweene Christ and the Paschal lambe. and the trueth to the figure, let vs compare one thing with an other. For that paschal lambe doth much resemble our Sauiour Christ, yet as the shadowe the bodie, and the type the truth.

1 As therefore that Iewish lambe was à male of à yeere old,Comparison betwene the Paschal lambe and Christ. and that without spot: so Christ, à full and perfect man, was without sinne.

2 As the houses which were sprinckled with the blood of the paschal lambe preserued the inhabitor from destruction:Exo. 12, 5. so they,Exo. 12, 13. whose consciences are sprinckled with the bloode of Christe the immaculate lambe,1. Pet. 1, 19. shal bee free from the punishment of sinne, which is damnation.

[Page 36] 3 As nothing of the paschal lambe might be eaten that was either rawe,Exod. 12, 9. or boiled, or sodden in water, but that which was rosted with fire: So there was no part of the Lords bodie but was rosted with great flames of sorowe.

4 As the children of Israel consumed ye pas­chal lambe with speede and that with vnlea­uened bread and sowre herbes:Num. 9, 11. so with most sharpe and sower mindes the Iewes put Christ to death, and that with al possible speede.

5 As the paschal lambe was offred of the whole multitude of the sonnes of Israel:Exod. 12. 6. 47. So that which through the counsel and wil of the chiefe Priests, and rulers was done to Christ at Ierusalem, maie seeme doubtles to be done of al Israel verie fewe excepted.

6 As by the commandement of God there was à caution that no bone of the paschal lambe should be broken:Exo. 12, 46. So albeit the hands and feete of our Sauiour were fastened to the crosse with nailes,Ioh. 19, 37. 36. & his side peirced through with à speare, yet not à bone of him was broken.

7 As none that was either vncleane,Num. 9, 7. or vncir­cumcised did eate of that lambe,Exo. 12, 44 but the cir­cumcised onlie: so he alone that is purged in minde, and receiued into the familie of God eateth vnto his saluation the flesh of the pure lambe which is Christ.

[Page 37] 8 As that lambe through the commaunde­ment of God was offered the tenth day of the first moneth:Exod 12, 2. 3. so Christ the true lambe of God,Ioh. 1, 29. the same day of that moneth,Mat. 26, 18 19. his father so ap­pointing it, was sacrificed vnto the Lord.

9 As once in à yeare that paschal lambe was killed:Exod. 12, 3. So once,Heb. 9, 7. and not often ought the sonne of God to be offered, which thing also was prefigured by that entrance of the chiefe prieste into the holie place, and that once in à yeere.

10 Last of al,1. Pet. 1, 18. 19. as the sacrifice of the paschal lambe pleased the Lord, and after it the peo­ple came out of Aegyt: So through the sacri­fice of Christ mankinde is reconciled to God, and brought out of bondage into libertie. The figures or prophecies rather of this great sa­crifiāe, of this sanctification, and attonement were the sacrifices of the fathers, as of Abel, Noah, Abraham, and afterward al those Aaro­nical sacrifices: albeit some more cleerelie than others bare the similitude of this great sacrifice of propitiation.

Being taken from the crosse he was laide in the graue, Christ buri­ed. of which mention is made in the 88. Psalme, Psal. 88, 3. My soule is filled with euiles, and my life draweth neere vnto the graue; I am counted among them that go downe vnto the pit,4. and am as à man without strength: free among the deade, like the slaine lying in the gr [...]ue, whome thou re­membrest 1 [Page 38] no more, and they are cut of from thine handes. Thou hast laide me in the lowest pit, in darkenes, and in the deepe.

The bodie of Christ aboade in the sepul­cher that part of the sixt day wherein nowe the Sabbaoth began,Resurrectiō of Christ. at what time the Iewes cessed from their labor: and from thence the whole Sabbaoth, which finished verie earelie in the morning he arose, that he might make it euident howe he had with himselfe buried the Iewish Sabboath, and was returned vn­to à new life hauing ouercome death, and left the old synagogue in the graue,Law of Mo­ses when abrogated. and raised-vp à newe Church. And therefore the Lord be­fore his death abrogated not the law of Mo­ses, forsomuch as yet he had not carried the Sabboath with himselfe vnto death and the graue. And that the Lord shoulde not abide long in the graue, Dauid prophecied in the 16. Psalme,Psal. 16, 9. 10. My flesh doth rest in hope, for thou wilt not leaue my soule in the graue: neither wilt thou suffer thine hol [...] one to se corruption.

As sone as the first day of the weeke, which we cal the Lordes daie appeared, he brought himselfe vnto the light,Iohn. 11, 25. and life, which was our light, and our resurrection from euerla­sting death. A figure of this resurrection also of the Lord went before in the Prophet Io­nas; and an euident prophecie is in Hosea, chap. 6.Hos. 6, 1. where in the person of Christe it is [Page 39] saide, Come, and let vs returne vnto the Lorde: for he hath spoiled, and he wil heale vs; he hath wounded vs, 2. and he wil binde vs vp. After two dayes wil he reuiue vs, and in the thirde daie he wil raise vs vp, 3. and we shal liue in his sight. Then shal we haue knowledge and indeuour our selues to know the Lord.

Hauing proued his resurrection after sun­drie and manie waies to his disciples,Caling of the Gentils. he gaue them in charge to baptize, Luk. 24, 47. & to teach al nations repentance, and remission of sinnes in his name. And so the prophecie of Iaakob concerning the vocation of the Gentils was fulfilled, who saith,Gen. 49, 10. The people shal be gathered vnto him. And for this cause the nations are so often inuited to laude, and to glorifie GOD, both in the psalmes, and Prophets: as in the 117. Psalme, Al nations praise ye the Lord: Psa. 117, 1. 2. al ye people praise him. For his louing kindnesse is great towarde vs, and the trueth of the Lord endureth for euer.

This commaundement being giuen to his disciples,Ascension of Christ. the 40. daie after his resurrection he ascended into heauen vnto his father,Act. 1, 3. at whose right hande he sitteth for euermore.Rom. 8, 34. From whence he sent both to his disciples,Act. 2, 1. 2. &c. and to the Church following the holie spirite to in­struct, and teach them. Of this ascension sin­geth the Psalmist in the 68 psalme:Psa. 68. 18. Thou art gone-vp on high, thou hast led captiuitie [Page 40] captiue, and receaued giftes for men. And of his sitting at the right hand of the Father the same Psalmist saith in the 110.Psal. 110, 1. Psalme on this wise, The Lord saide vnto my Lord, sit thou at my right hande, vntil I make thine enimies thy foote­stoole.

By the right hand of the Father is meant his principall giftes,The right hand of the father what, as happinesse, mercie, good­nes, liberalitie, wherein Christ sitteth as à dis­pensor, and bestower; and his kingdome, and liberalitie of such good things, is vpon the ho­lie, and blessed soules both angelical, and hu­mane,Psal. 16, 5. 6. whereof it is saide Psalme 16. The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance, and of my cup thou doest mainteine my lot. The lines are fallen vnto me in pleasant places, that is, I haue gotten à goodlie inheritance. For mine inheritance is noble.

Furthermore as touching the holie Ghost, this is to be noted,Howe the holie Ghost is with the Church. The holie spirite abideth e­uermore with the Church, albeit inuisible. But vnto the Apostle the 10. daie after his as­cension,Act. 2, 3. that is 50. daies after the resurrection of Christ, he appeared visiblie in firie tongues, that the Lorde of hostes, which is Iesus Christ might confirme the infallible trueth of his Gospel to the whole worlde, as it were with this seal of his maiestie. Which thing was long fore-seen by ye prophet Ioël,Ioel. 2, 28. who in his 2. cha. saith on this wise: And afterward (that is after [Page 41] Israël hath receiued the teacher of righteous­nesse, that they may both remember and vn­derstand those thinges, which he shal teach) I wil powre-out my spirit▪ vpon al flesh, and your sonnes and your daughters shal prophecie, your old men shal dreame dreames, and your yong men shal see visions. The 50. day after the resurrection of the Lord the euent most euidentlie aun­swered vnto this prophecie. For the spirit of the Lord was powred vpon al flesh, not par­ticularlie, but generallie vppon Iewes, and Gentils; yong and old, men & women; bonde and free;Isai. 54, 13. rude and learned &c. And Isaiah 54. And al thy children shal be taught of the Lorde, and much peace shal be to thy children. What the opinions of philosophers were you shal finde afterwarde in this first part, chap. 42. In times passed man made himselfe an author, condu­ctor, and teacher of godlinesse, as appeareth in the Philosophers, whereof diuers set diuers endes of the felicitie which man should seeke after: but nowe, although man teach man the seruice of God; yet professeth he not his owne, but the wisdome of God.

The Apostles nowe hauing receiued the holy Ghost, through the heauenly doctrine at the commandement of Christ they gathered à Church, & by wonderful miracles confirmed ye same their doctrine according to ye promise of our Sauiour: which thing Isaiah prophe­cied of 600. yeares afore it came to passe. For in his 8. chapter thus he saith: Behold I and [Page 42] the children whome the Lorde hath giuen mee, Isai. 8, 18. are as signes & as wonders in Israël by the Lord of hostes which dwelleth in mount Zion. What wonder I pray you, is greater? what signe more euident, than that the Apostles by their workes, being for number fewe, for power weake & fraile, for knowledge simple, should worke miracles, and turne both the tongues and the wil of men vnto them, & to their reli­gion? These are the children that are giuen to the church in stede of the auncient fathers, as the Psalmist doth say, In steede of thy fathers shal thy children be: thou shalt make them prin­ces through al the earth. Psa. 45, 16. When hee nameth princes, we must haue respect to à kingdome. Therefore for somuch as the kingdome of Christ is gouerned by the worde,Kingdome of Christ how gouer­ned. they are princes which by the worde and heauenlie doctrine do rule the realme of Christ. And although the Church was first builded of the fathers and princes of the Iewes: yet princi­palie it is gathered from the Gentiles, euen from that barren, and altogether vnprofita­ble flocke. Whereof Isaiah in his 54. chapter speaketh after this manner: Reioyce ô barren that diddest not beare: Isai. 54, 1. breake forth into ioye and reioyce, thou that diddest not trauel with child: for the desolate hath mo children than the married wife, 2. saith the Lorde. Enlarge the place of thy tentes, and let them spreade out the curtaines of [Page 43] thine habitations: spare not, streach out thie cords, and make fast thy stakes. 3. For thou shalt increase on the right hande and on the left, and thie seede shal possesse the Gentils and dwel in the desolate cities. Isai, 60, 15. Againe in his 60. Chap. he saith: where­as thou hast beene forsaken and hated, so that no man went by thee, I wil make thee an eternal glo­rie, and à [...]oie from generation vnto generation. And afterwarde,Isai. 60, 22. A little one shal become as à thousande, and à smale stone as à strong nation. I the Lord wil hasten it in due time.

Christ fore-telled howe the kingdome of God shoulde be taken from the Iewes,Reiection of the Iewes. and shoulde be giuen to à nation that shoulde bring foorth the fruites thereof.Mat. 21, 43. Which thing as we nowe see it come to passe: so was it long before propheci­ed by the Prophet Isaiah in his 65. chapter, where he saith: I haue bene sought of them that asked not:Isai. 65, 1. I was founde of them, that sought me not.2. I saide, Beholde me, beholde me, vnto à na­tion that called not vpon my name. I haue sprede out my handes al the daie vnto à rebellious people,3. which walked in à waie that was not good, euen after their owne imaginations: à people that pro­uoked me euen vnto my face. And more plain­lie yet in an other place: Though thy people, ô Israel,Isai. 10, 22. be as the sande of the sea: yet shal but à remnant of them be saued. Reade the 9. 10. 11. chap. of Paul vnto the Romanes.

By this, I thinke, we haue sufficientlie con­firmed [Page 44] the Minor of the proposed argument, and both briefelie and plainelie proued howe all thinges are accomplished in Iesus ye sonne of Marie, which were fore-spoken both of Moses and the prophets concerning the Mes­siah; and this is it which in Iohn is written, The Lawe was giuen by Moses, Ioh. 1, 17. but grace and truth came by Iesus Christ, that is, the thinges which Moses by figures shadowed, and the prophetes fore-tolde by prophecies, Christe in truth hath fulfilled. The summe of al is this, howe Iesus the sonne of Marie is the verie Messiah,Christ à Prophet, à king, and à Priest. that is, à prophet, à King, and à Priest. A prophet, whereof Moses in the 18. Chapter of Deuteronomie did speake:Deut, 18, 15 The Lorde thie God wil raise-vp vnto thee à Prophet like vnto me from among you, euen of thie brethren, vnto him ye shal hearken: Psal. 2, 6. A King, of whome it is saide in the second Psalme, I haue set my King vpon Zion mine holie mountaine: Psa. 110, 4. A priest, ac­cording vnto the 110. psalm,Benefites comming by Christ. Thou art à Priest for euer after the order of Melchi-zedek.

The benefites of this Messiah, and the ap­plication of thē are proposed in this verse of the 2. Psalme:Psal. 2, 12. Blessed are al that trust in him.

CHAP. 5.
A confutation of the obiections which the braine-sicke Iewes doe alleage for their partes.

[Page 45] NOw forsomuch as the obstinacie and ma­lice of the Iewes is such, that rather they wil stop their eies against the cleere light, thā admit the trueth of God, concerning the Mes­siah our Lord and Sauior Christ alreadie come into the world, I purpose brieflie to confute such thinges as theie falslie, maliciouslie, and furiouslie doe obiect. Theie not without great railing speaches vtterlie doe denie the Minor of our foundation: and euen against their owne consciences verie vntrulie do saie, that the prophecies of the Prophets touching the Messiah promised were not fulfilled in Iesus the sonne of Marie.Arguments of the Iewes For they obiecte foure thinges. The first is touching the time of the Messiah: the seconde of the forme of 1 his kingdome: the thirde about the place of 2 his dominion: the last concerning the people.3 Yea and besides these thinges, that they maie 4 diminish the credite of the Euangelistes, they giue out howe they are contrarie one to an­other.

And,The Iewes denie the resurrection of Christ. that these seducers may persuade mi­serable men, especialie they assault the heade of al, and denie that our Lorde and Sauiour Christ is risen from the deade, which reproch­ful lie when I haue aunswered, I wil in order confute these foure thinges which they obiect together with the slanders that vniustlie they [Page 46] laie vpon our Lord.

Let these enimies of GOD crie til their hartes ake againe that our Lord Christ is not risen from the dead:Resurrecti­on of Christ by what testimonies confirmed. but who is so foolish, that wil beleeue his enimies before his friendes? who so childish that wil giue credit to manie euil rather than to à fewe good? who are soonest to be beleeued, they which of meere malice heape slaunders & lies together, which are defiled with al manner wickednes, or they rather that being famous for their holines and innocencie of life haue sealed the trueth of God euen with their verie bloode? who more worthie of credite, the spirit of Satan in the hardened Iewes; or the spirit of Christ, who the 50. daie after the resurrection of the Lord by à visible testimonie bare witnesse of the re­surrection, kingdome, and power of Christ? What madnes is it sooner to beleeue the for­ged lies of the Iewes, than the diuine workes of Christ, whereby the Apostles did confirme the resurrection of the Lord? To be briefe, the sepulchre, the disciples, the Angels, the holie Ghost, the power of Christ in the heartes of the righteous, and the preseruation of the Church against the marueilous rage of diuels and Tyrantes, do plainlie prooue yt our Lord Iesus Christ is risen from the dead. And there­fore abhore we the most impudent lie of the Iewes; and let vs looke for the comming of [Page 47] our Sauiour, from the cloudes, euen for Ie­sus Christ whom we worship as our redemer.

Now let vs come vnto these foure things, which they saie are not fulfilled in Iesus, whō we acknowledge & serue as ye true Mes­siah: which foure thinges we confesse were fore-told concerning the Messiah by ye holie Prophets of God, who without great sinne are not to be suspected of vntruth in their words.

The first thing therefore which they ob­iect,The first ar­gument of the Iewes. is concerning the time of the comming of the Messiah.

The true Messiah,The maior. saie they, shal come in the last daies.The minor. But yt Iesus, whō ye acknowledg to be ye Messiah, did much preuēt he last dais. For it is aboue 1567. yeeres since hee was borne. Therefore that your Iesus,The conclu­sion. is not the Messiah.

The maior they proue by the saieng of the Prophet Isaiah, who in his second chap. spea­keth after this forme of the time of ye Messiah: It shal be in the last daies, Isai. 2, 2. that the mountaine of the house of the Lord shal be prepared.

Lo how shamefully ye blind Iewes do offend here contrarie to the very & right rule which they make thēselues,The aun­swere. and yt is this, Who marketh not what is written both afore & after in books, he peruerteth the words of the liuing God. For had they here cōpared ye prophecie of Isaiah with yt prophecie of Daniel, wherin as it were with à finger by most euident words ye time of the [Page 48] comming of the Messiah is pointed-vnto, surely farre otherwise theie would haue defi­ned the last dayes.

A daie is vnderstoode three manner of waies.A daie ta­ken diuers­lie. First for the time wherein the sunne is ouer our Horizon,An artifici­al daie. which the Astronomers cal an artificial daie. Secondlie, it is taken for the space of 24. houres from ye rising of the sunne vnto the rising-againe of the same,A natural daie. and that is called à daie natural. Last of all some certaine time ordeined, decreed, and appointed for some speciall thing: in which sense the Pro­phetes vnderstand it manie times. Therefore when the Prophet saith, In the last daies, he noteth the last times, that is the last age of the world, distinguished frō the other ages not so much by à certaine, and described number of yeeres, as by à separation of thinges done in the same. So did Elias distinguish the worlde into three times or ages, when he saide: Two thousand voide; two thousand the Lawe; two thou­sand the Messiah: And therefore according to the computation of Elias, the last time of the worlde is the space of two thousand yeeres. Read the Chronicles of Philip Melancton.

Againe, the last daies are oftentimes taken by the prophets for the last time of the Iewish kingdome, and nation in Palestine. So that the sense of the Prophet is this: it shal be in the last daies, not of worldlie time (for who should [Page 49] haue reaped anie benefit by fauour so long put of? surelie verie few.) but in ye last daies of pro­phecie, of ye kingdom, & of ye Priesthod, which three things ceased when ye sacrifice of Christ was finished. A vaine fiction therefore is it of the Iewes which they make about the time of the Messiah inuented contrarie to their ve­rie conscience. But this they faine to delude such as are ignorant of the maner of the scrip­ture in distinguishing times.

The second thing which they obiect,The 2. Ar­gument of the Iewes. is a­bout ye form of the kingdom of ye Messiah pro­mised, which they verie impudentlie contend agreeth not with our Messiah.The Maior Vnder the Mes­siah, saie they, shalbe no warres neither among men,Isai. 40, 4. nor among the beastes of the feelde, but soueraigne peace, the mountaines being made lowe, and the vallies exalted, that al thinges may be streight and plaine.The Minor But this we see not hitherto come to passe.The conclu­sion. And therefore the Messiah is not yet come.

To prooue the Maior they bring foorth these and such like places of the Prophetes: Isai. 2, 4. They shal breake their swordes into mattockes, and their speares into sithes: nation shall not lift-vp à sworde against nation, neither shal they learne to fight anie more.Isai. 11, 6. And in the 11. chapter of the same prophet Isaiah: The wolfe shal dwel with the lambe, and the leopard shal lie with the kid, and the calfe, and the Lion, and the fat beast to­gether, [Page 50] and à litle childe shal leade them.7. And the kowe and the beare shal feede, their yong ones shal lie together: and the Lion shal eate strawe like the bullock.8. And the sucking child shal plaie vpon the hole of the aspe, & the wained child shal put his hand vpon the cokatrice hole.9. Then shal none hurt nor destroie in al the mountaine of mine ho­lines: for the earth shal be ful of the knowledg of the Lord,Micah. 4, 1. as the waters that couer the sea. To which effect the Prophet Micah cap. 4. entreateth. Isai. 40, 4. I­saiah likewise addeth: Euerie valleie shalbe ex­alted, & euerie mountaine and hil shalbe brought low. By these & manie moe such like prophe­cies concerning ye manner of the gouernmēt of the Messiah, the blinde & foolish Iewes doe cōclude yt Iesus the sonne of the virgin Marie is not ye true Messiah promised by ye Prophets.

But against these let vs oppose an immo­ueable foundation,The answer whereof we will conclude, that such thinges as corporaly be ascribed, ought spiritualie to be vnderstoode through comparing earthlie with heauenlie thinges. The foundation is this,Kingdome of Christe what. The kingdome of the Messiah is not an earthlie but an heauenlie & spiritual kingdom: which maie be gathered by the first promise made of ye Messiah to come. For the Messiah was promised that he should come to destroie the kingdome of Satan. For thus it is in the firste promise:Gen. 3, 15. The seede of the woman shal breake the serpentes head, [Page 51] that is, the Messiah shal destroie the workes of the diuel, namelie sinne and death, and re­store to man ye image of God; which through sinning he had lost, that is, as Daniel doth in­terpret ye same,Dan. 9, 24. shal bring-in euerlasting righte­ousnes, and blessing vpon such as acknowledge him to be King.Gen. 22, 18. And therefore it is written, In thie seede shal al the nations of the earth be bles­sed. Of this ground we doe firmelie conclude, that whatsoeuer by the holie Prophetes of God is fore-tolde touching the raigne of the Messiah after the similitude of an earthlie kingdome,Kingdome of Christ is à spiritual kingdome. ought to be applied by waie of comparison, according to the manner of à spi­ritual kingdome, to signifie that in the king­dome of Christ there should be equalitie, con­corde, and wonderfull peace, peace I meane agreeing to the kingdome of Christ, namelie à spiritual peace, and that in and among such as by true faith receiue Christe into them­selues. Which spiritual peace is signified by the concorde of the beastes, whereof the Pro­phetes doe speake.Office of the Messiah. For it is too too foolishe to thinke yt the office of the Messiah is to change the natures of thinges, as to make the Lion laie-awaie his crueltie; or the Aspe, and Co­katrice their poison. So then vnder these fi­gures the Prophets doe signifie, howe men that are fierce, bolde, and cruel, as Lions, if once theie take vpon their shoulders, the ea­sie [Page 52] and light yoke of Christ, Mat. 11, 29 30. that is, doe imbrace the doctrine of Christ, and through faith de­pende vpon him, must needes laie-awaie their lionish nature and conditions, and so dwell peaceablie and louinglie with sheepe, that is, with milde and simple ones, hauing on each part through faith of Christ, put-on loue; and howe the Mountaines, namelie the chiefe a­mong the people, laying-aside hautinesse of minde, must suffer them-selues to be made e­qual to them of lowest degree. And that there should be no such worldlie peace, as the Iewes dreame of,Psal. 110, 2 the 110. Psalme, which was written of the Messiah, doth testifie, where among o­ther things it is said: Be thou ruler in the middes of thine enemies, which thing we see to haue come to passe in Christ, who euen among his most extreme & cruel enimies hath à Church, the which he protecteth, and defendeth a­gainst the rage of all tyrants, and diuels. For this prophecie doth firmelie abide: The seede of the serpent shall bruise his heele, Gen. 3, 15. that is of the Messiah, and of the Church.

The thirde thing which the Iewes obiect is the place of his scepter,The 3. argu­ment of the Iewes. that is of his king­dome, or court of the Messiah.

The Messiah,The Maior. saie theie, shal haue his Palace in mount Zion.

But that Iesus whome you take to be the Messiah,The Minor. possesseth not one foote of ground [Page 53] there.

Therefore that Iesus is not the promised Messiah.The conclu­sion.

The Maior theie confirme by à saieng in the second Psalme: Psal. 2, 6. I haue set my King vpon Zi­on mine holie mountaine. And in the 4. of Mi­cah: Micah. 4, 1. The mount Zion shal be the house of Iehouah, the people shal flowe vnto it.

Here againe the miserable Iewes doe vn­derstand that carnalie,The answer which the state of the Messiahs kingdome doth proue, ought spiri­tualie to be taken. The mount Zion mysticalie doth signifie the Church:Mount Zi­on the Church. which is therefore called mount Zion, because the kingdome of the Messiah there beginneth, according to the wordes of Isaiah in his second chapter:Isai. 2, 3. For the Lawe shal go forth of Zion, and the worde of the Lorde from Ierusalem. For it is the phrase of the Scripture to name the whole from the origi­nal: as the Iewish people is called Israel in re­spect of their beginning. After which manner Zion is saide to be the palace of the Messiah, because the Messiah began there his kingdom.

Againe as Ierusalem maie two waies be vn­derstoode spiritualie and earthlie:Ierusalem, what it sig­nifieth. so maie the earthlie Zion, wherebie the heauenlie is figu­red, which is the palace of the Messiah our Lord Iesus Christ. And that the prophecie ei­ther of Dauid or of Micah, concerning the mount Zion, and earthlie citie Ierusalem, maie [Page 54] not carnalie be vnderstode, the Prophecie of Daniel in his 9. Chapter doth plainlie shewe, where it is saide:Dan. 9, 26. And the people of the Prince that shall come, that is the hoste of the Empe­rour Vespasian, shal destroie the citie & the san­ctuarie, and the end thereof shalbe with à flood: & vnto the end of the battel it shalbe destroied by de­solations. Nowe for so much as the euent doth answere to this prophecie of the vtter de­structiō of the citie Ierusalem, the vanitie of ye Iewes is manifest enough, which place ye pa­lace of the Messiah in the earthlie mount Zion.

The 4.The 4. argu­ment of the Iewes. thing which the brainsicke Iewes do obiect, is about the people of the Messiah, which, theie saie, can be none other, than car­nal Israel: That theie thinke to be the proper inheritance of ye Messiah; to it onelie, theie wil stand in it, that the promises were made.

But miserablie theie both are deceaued, and do deceaue.The answer. I confesse, the verie carnal Israelites were chosen before al other nati­ons, and was called the peculiar people of God. But wherefore I beseech you? For their merites and worthinesse? Not so. But that there might be à people that might kepe the lawe of God, in whome and from whom the Messiah might be borne. In consideration of which excellencie of God, Dauid saith in the [Page 55] 147. Psalme,Psa. 147, 20 He hath not dealt so with euerie nation, neither haue they knowne his iudgements. But what? Hath God, changing his minde, taken to him selfe the idolatrous Gentiles and refused the Iewes?The Iewes, whie reie­cted. Surelie the counsaile of God is vnchangeable, for he is faithful in his promises: but he hath à condition of faith and obedience annexed. And therefore be­cause of their incredulitie the Iewes are cast­awaie. For they haue despised the worde of God, and rebelliouslie reiected the Messiah sent vnto them for their welfare: which thing doubtles the Prophetes concealed not from vs. What is that which the Prophet Isaiah in his tenth chapter doth say?Isai. 10, 22. Though thy people, ô Israel, be as the sande of the sea, yet shal the rem­nant of them returne. What is more euident than this prophecie? Hath not the euent plain­lie agreed to these wordes? But how commeth it about that they are not conuerted? Whose faulte is it? The same Prophet sheweth wherein it lieth, whose wordes let vs heare: I haue spreade out my handes al the daie vnto a rebellious people. Isai. 65, 2. But whence came that re­bellion? Surelie from nothing els, but euen because they were offended at the basenesse of the person of the Messiah. Which thing the same Prophet fore-saw would come to passe. For thus he saith: Beholde I laie in Zion à stum­bling [Page 56] stone, and à rocke to make men fal: Rom. 9, 33. and e­uerie one that beleeueth on him, shal not be asha­med. Who is the true Israel. Mine aunswere then vnto the obiection is: Israel is the people of the Messiah; which is verie true being vnderstod of the true Israel which is not of the flesh, but of the promise. But Israel of the promise is euerie one which beleeueth: which thing in holie scripture is declared by sundrie types and figures. Ishma­el, and Izhak were borne of one father Abra­ham: Esau and Iaakob of the same father Iz­hak. But as Izhak and Iaakob for the promise sake are reputed for the seede, without anie respect had vnto the prerogatiue of the fleshe: so euerie one which beleeueth the promise is counted for the seede, as Paul in the 9. 10. and 11. chapters vnto the Romanes doeth at large and euidentlie prooue. For in these three chapters the Apostle handleth the same argument which we doe in this place. And therefore I send-backe the hearers vnto Paul, who by strong argumentes refuteth the erro­nious definition of Israel, and confirmeth the true, which in times passed was shadowed in the olde Testament. Whereof the Apostle concludeth,Rom 10, 12 howe there is none ods, howe there is no difference betweene the Iewe and the Grecian. For he that is Lord ouer al, is right vn­to al, 13. that cal-vpon him. For whosoeuer shal cal­vpon the name of the Lorde, shal be saued.

[Page 57] Therefore without any respect had either vn­to nations or persons, the Lorde without ac­ceptation of persons is liberal vnto al. For he is the God not of the Iewes onelie, Rom. [...]. 29. but also of the Gentiles, who, as he reiecteth al disobedient ones: so of his meere mercie he receiueth such as flie vnto him according to the vnchangea­ble rule of his eternal decree. As touching the vocation of the Gentiles into the place of the disobedient Iewes, the Prophet Hosea in his 2. chapter did fore-tel,Hos. 2, 23. I wil saie to them which were not my people, Rom 9, 25. 26. Thou art my people: and her, beloued, Hos. 1, 10. which was not beloued. And it shalbe in the place where it was saide vnto them, Ye are not my people, that there they shal be called, The children of the liuing God.

And touching that which the Iewes ob­iect of the ignominie of ye crosse, wherby they are offended, it is by the testimonies of the Prophets sufficientlie confuted aboueIn the 4. Chapter of this first parte. where we entreated of the passion, victorie, resurre­ction, and ascension of our Sauiour into heauen.

Nowe the cause whie the incredulous Iewes doe detract from the authoritie of the Euangelistes,For the au­ctoritie of the Euange­listes. and saie that they write con­traries, springeth out of that verie puddle of impietie whēce their other toies do arise. For in the ground, and summe of matter they dif­fer at no time, but the difference appeareth [Page 58] in circumstances onelie. Iud [...]cus Viues lib. 2. de veritate fidei. But the more plain­lie to answere vnto ye obiection of the Iewes, I wil adioine to this place ye words of Ludoui­cus Viues, which are these: But, saith he, doe these foure, to wit Euangelistes, differ at anie time among themselues? To this question Iohn Chrysostome aunswereth on this wise. Smal dis­agreeing in the Gospels sometime doe offer argu­ment of the trueth, least otherwise they might seeme to haue written of composition, if in al respectes they shoulde agree. Iohn the Apo­stle was at Ephesus at that same time when Paul was, yet neither maketh mention of other in their Epistles, neither did they meete much and talke-together, seeing they were sufficientlie enough taught, instructed, and armed as it were of the spirite of God, that they might not be thought af­ter they had communicated-together one after an others counsel to haue preached Christ: but ac­cording to the doctrine of Christ himselfe, and re­uelation from heauen: so that in the principles & summe they disagree no whit, as that Christe is the sonne of God, borne of the virgin Marie, and that he worked miracles, taught to contemne this worlde, to beleeue, to loue both God and man; that he called all men vnto euerlasting happinesse, and suffered, died, rose againe, ascended into heauen, sitteth at the right hande of his father, and shal come to iudge the quicke and the deade. These thinges with one voice, and with one minde they [Page 59] doe constantlie reporte and teach. Albeit in cir­cumstances which the Grecians cal Perestaseis, the which alter not the substance of matter, they dif­fer sometime. One sheweth à thing brieflie, ano­ther more at large. One telleth howe two were healed, another howe three: One at the comming out at the gate, another at the going in. Which thing falleth-out manie-times, because the mi­racles of Christ were so manie, that those thinges which in deed were diuerse, we think are the same by reason of some resemblance which they haue together: and so it falleth-out in the wordes and sentences of doctrine. Christe vttered the same things in diuerse places diuerslie. One telleth what he saide on this wise, others what he said in that place after another forme, to speake plainelie they gather peeces of the sermons, and wordes of Christ which maie make for our instruction, and welfare.

CHAP. 6.
Howe, and wherein the Iewes doe blame our Lord and Sauiour Christ: with à cleering him from the same.

HEre foloweth howe the Iewes inspired of the diuel, the father of all vntrueth, doe most impudentlie and cursedlie blame our most holie and innocent Christ; that which they laie against him is this.

[Page 60] First, as theie saie, because he made him­selfe the sonne of God equal to the Father.Iohn. 10, 30

Secondlie, for that he adhorted men to the worshipping of another God.

Thirdlie, for abrogating the law of Moses.

Fourthlie, because he spake against the tra­ditions of the fathers.

Fiftlie,Luke. 6, 1. 2. & for violating the Sabbaoth.

Sixtlie, for saieng he could destroie the Temple of God,Matt. 26, 61 and builde it in three daies.

Laste of all,Luke. 11, 14. 15. because he cast-out diuels tho­rough Beelzebub the cheefe of the diuels.

See what enuie, loe what a minde peruer­ted can doe, when men are drowned in the gulfe of malice! Who seeth not that these miserable wretches, which dread not to con­tende against God himselfe, are to be pitied rather than confuted? yet brieflie let vs an­swere to euerie particular crime.

Touching the first,Aunswere vnto the first crime. we maie confesse that he acknowledged himselfe to be the sonne of God equal to the Father. But what wise men will saie it is à lie to confesse the truth? For if this be à fault, then shal à lie be à commenda­ble thing: which no man will grant that ma­keth account of the lawe of nature. Doe not the Prophets in manie places of the scripture ascribe the name Iehouah to the Messiah? saith not Isaiah in his sixtie chapter.Isai. 60, 2. The Lord shal arise vpon thee, and his glorie shal be seene vpon [Page 61] thee? Hetherto belongeth the saieng of the prophet Ieremiah,Ier. 33, 16. wherin he is called the Lord our righteousnes. And the Lord him-selfe out of the 110. Psalme declareth howe the Messiah should be nor onelie à man, but also à God, when he saide,Psal. 110, 1. The Lord saide vnto my Lord, sit thou at my right hand. Office of the Messiah. But the errour of the Iewes doth here-of arise, because theie mar­ked not howe the office of the Messiah was to pacifie the wrath of God, to beare the punish­ment of the sinnes of all mankinde, to be pre­sent in al places, to beholde the heart, to heare the groanes of such as cal-vpon him: which thinges doubtlesse are not the workes of anie pure creature, or finite nature. But of this mat­ter we haue spoken more at large in another place.

The second,Answere to the second crime. concerning the worshipping of another God, as it is à newe inuention of the Iewes: so it is moste false. For both by word and example he inuited to the praieng-vnto, and worshipping of that God alone, e­uen the onelie and true God, which had both giuen à lawe and ceremonies to the people, & also brought the Iewes out of the land of E­gypt.Iohn. 5, 17. 18. &c. But this was it which troubled ye Iewes for that he caled God his Father, whom had he denied, hee should haue bin like to them, that is à liar.Answere to the third crime.

The third thing which theie obiect, is the [Page 62] abrogation of the lawe, wherein they make à loude lie. For he alone both fulfilled the lawe himselfe,Matt. 5, 17. 18. &c. and corrected the abuses of the Pharisies, yea and alwayes euen to the death of the crosse was subiecte to the lawe.

The fourth whereby they saie how he spake against ye traditions of ye fathers,Answere to the 4 crime. is most vntrue. But what fault is it, I pray you, to re­prehend impietie? to condemne superstition? and to speake against such thinges as are ma­nifestlie against the worde of God? Is it such à crime to blame the peruerse opinion of the Pharisies whereby they place the tradi­tions of men before the commaundementes of GOD? especialie when the Lorde himselfe doth saie,Ier. 20, 18. 19. Walke ye not in the ordinan­ces of your fathers, walke in my statutes? Saith not the Lorde by the Apostle,Mark. 7, 7. They worshippe me in vaine teaching for doctrines the commaun­dements of men? But this was one, and à prin­cipal cause of crucifieng Iesus the Messiah, fearing, traditions being abolished, least they themselues shoulde come into contempt a­mong the people, & leese not à little of their auctoritie, and so by little and little come in­to decaie.

The fifth crime is,Answere to the 5. crime that our Lorde shoulde violate the Sabbaoth, the which also is most vntrue.What is it to keepe the Sabbaoth aright. For as the true rest of the Sabbaoth is to cease from sinne, and to rest in God: [Page 63] so the true workes are they which make vn­to the abolishing of sinne, and promoting of Gods glorie: as were the deedes of healing which he wrought vpon the Sabbaoth. And in verie deede there can be no more excel­lent à worke than to helpe man at his ex­treme necessitie. If it be not lawful vppon the Sabbaoth to heale, shal it therefore be lawfull to kil à man? Is it lawful to drawe out an Asse falen into à pitte, and shal it not be lawful on the Sabbaoth by the worde and power of God to heale à man? But this peo­ple haue neither ende, nor measure in slaun­dering.

The sixt crime which they laie to his charge is,Answere to the 6. crime. I can destroye this Temple, and builde it againe in three daies. Iohn. 2, 8▪ The occasion of which his wordes was this. The Iewes had required à signe of Christ of his zeale, and power, he therefore according to the manner of the Apostles, and of his owne too, sheweth them no friuolous, tem­porarie, or base signe, as they required, but à great, à wonderful, and an euerlasting signe of the resurrection of his bodie, whiche should be the third daie after his death: which bodie of his was more truelie and aptlie the Temple of GOD, than that stonie one of Ierusalem. For therein [Page 64] dwelleth à more proper,Against the 7. crime. and present God.

The seuenth crime which theie obiect to our Lorde is, that he cast-out diuels in the name of Beelzebub the chiefe of the diuels. Which fault by strong argumentes he remo­ueth from himselfe, Matth. 12, and Luke 11.

But afore I shew how the faithlesse Iewes do blemish the miracles of Christ,Of miracles in general. I will in fewe wordes declare what is meant by diuine miracles. Next I wil briefelie shewe ye markes, wherebie the diuine miracles of Christ, and of the saintes are distinguished from fained mi­racles of magicians, and diuels. For the diuel as one that hateth God, and would gladlie turn vs from God by al possible meanes, both by him-selfe,The Diuel an inuitator of God, and his workes. and his ministers the magicians, doth emulate the workes of God, and especi­alie miracles, because he seeth howe that thing commeth neerest vnto the diuine power which is aboue nature. And therefore as by his owne natural force he is mightier, so in the knowledge of the virtues and operation of thinges more skilfull than man, he easelie be­guileth our senses to deceaue, and bring vs from the truth.

Diuine miracles are such as God wor­keth:Diuine mi­racles wha [...]; which are therefore called miracles, be­cause 1 theie bring men into admiration.Effectes of diuine mi­racles. For first theie bring men into the admiration of Gods power wherebie miracles are wrought.

[Page 65] Secondly through the power of God men 2 gather that the person which doth miracles, both is sent of GOD, and also bringeth Gods worde, for confirmation whereof mi­racles are shewed, as moste euident demon­strations. Thirdly through this conside­ration 3 faith is conceaued in the minde, of the doctrine; albeit the maiestie of the doctrine doth exceede the reach of reason. Fourthlie 4 of credit to the doctrine springeth in the hart à confidence of the promise of ye good things which are brought by the doctrine. Fiftlie 5 who so beleeue the doctrine, and hope for the promise, they do loue, and praise God. And by miracles, as it were by the hand they are led vnto the faith of their condition, which is to haue felowship with God, and in him to obteine an euerlasting blessednesse for euer­more. Sixtlie, because euerie signe is à signe of 6 somthing signed, faith seeketh the analogie & comparison betwene the signe and that is sig­ned, and so by comparing them together of earthlie gathereth heauēlie, & spiritual things of visible. For the diuine miracles of Christ aboue al haue spiritual significatiōs: the which, ye aptlie they may be aplied, shold be reduced vnto more euident sentences of scripture, and notable examples, that the spiritual interpre­tation may be agreeable to faith, and consent with the principle groundes of our religion, [Page 66] yea and also haue euident examples wherebie the matter is painted out as it were.

The reason whie Christe and good men would confirme their doctrine to men by mi­racles,The reson whie mi­racles were wrought. is this. It was verie meete that faith, which is of matters that exceede mans vnder­standing, should be confirmed by such things as are aboue nature, and contrarie vnto the v­sual course of the same, that men with their outwarde eies beholding such thinges to be brought to passe as exceeded the power of na­ture, might be stirred-vp to the beholding with the internal eies of the minde, that is, to the beleeuing of those thinges which are beyonde reason. As therefore the thinges which are subiect to reason neede no demon­stration, that an vndoubted faith may be gi­uen to them: so diuine and celestial, by mira­cles, as by certaine heauenlie proofes, do de­serue credite.

Nowe the cause why at this daie miracles are not wrought in ye eies of men, Whie mi­racles ar not wrought. as they haue bin, Augustine sheweth when he saith: Neither be these miracles permitted to indure vnto our daies, that the minde maie not alwaies seeke after visible thinges, and so by the longe vse of them mankinde would waxe colde, which through their noueltie was inflamed. Neither ought we in these daies to doubte that theie are to be credited, who, [Page 67] when theie preached those things, which fewe at­taine-vnto, could for all that persuade the people howe theie were to be folowed.

Hitherto generalie haue we spoken of hea­uenlie miracles,Howe to knowe the true from false mira­ces. now come we vnto ye markes, wherebie diuine are distinguished from diue­lish, and true from from fained miracles. The notes are sixe, namelie the truth of the nature, the power, the manner of doing, the efficient cause, the cause mouing before it be wrought, and the ende. By these notes as it were by à touch-stone miracles aswell of Christ and of the Saintes, namelie diuine, as fained and dia­bolical as of Magicians, and inchanters, are to be examined.

For the first therefore.The 1. note. The truth of the es­sence is to be considered. All the miracles of Christ haue the trueth of the essence, that is, are such in deede as theie seeme to be. Laza­rusLazarus. had lien foure daies in the graue,Iohn 11, 17. & stoonk againe, therefore without doubt he was dead. Therefore Christ raising him from the dead, wrought à true miracle in deede. For beeing raised he liued truelie, he eate and dranke, wherebie manie Iewes, that knew him marue­led much at the miracle. Neither was there wanting which sought to kil Lazarus, that so theie might either blemishe, or denie the dead.

[Page 68] And therfore it was à true miracle. But the mi­racles of the diuel,Miracles of the diuel how wroght and of magicians are done by iuggling and deluding the eies, as those were in times passed that happened in Epi­daurus and els where, or by secret, and natural philosophie. For the diuel who exactlie & perfectlie knoweth both the nature & power of things, can secretlie applie either herbes or stones, the effect whereof is counted of igno­rant men for a miracle, albeit it be the worke of nature.

The second note,The second marke. whereby true miracles are knowne from false, is the power whereby theie are wrought, the which if it exceede the power of nature, is doubtles diuine, and the miracles so done haue God for the author of them.How to knowe by what power a miracle is wrought. This diuine power may diuerslie be seene in the miracles both of the Saintes, and of Christ himself. First in ye verie action, as for ye sūne to staie his course, or to returne frō the west vnto the East;Ios. 10, 12. 13. for a man to walke vpon the waters, as vppon drie land, which thing we reade our Sauiour to haue done.Mat. 14. 25 Second­lie in the subiect vppon whom the deede is done,Matt. 9, 27. 28. 29 as to giue to the blinde sight, and life to the dead.Iohn. 9, 1. 2. & 32. 34. & For nature may giue both light, and life too, but not either to the blinde or to the dead, as our Sauiour did. Thirdlie by the order also and manner wherby they are done,Mat. 8, 26. as suddenlie to cease à tempest,Matt. 14, 32 and the trou­bled [Page 69] sea, suddenlie to heale the sicke. So do we reade our Sauiour Christe to haue com­maunded the windes and the sea, and the tem­pests which forth-with obeied him,Luke. 5, 12. 13. & manie­tymes euen with à becke, and suddenlie to haue healed leapers and others.Mark. 9 33 34. Fourthlie by the worker, as to behold the heartes of men, which thing belongeth onlie vnto God.Luke 9. 46. 47. How often I pray you do we reade that Christ sawe the verie cogitations, sometyme of his owne disciples,Iohn. 9, 6. 11. somtyme of his aduersaries? Fiftlie by the instrument wherwithal the miracle is done, as with claie to restore sight to ye blind, wheras claie naturalie wil make blinde rather, but the Lord vsed claie in healing the blind, that the curing might seeme to proceede not from nature, but from the God of nature. And so Christ did worke al sortes of miracles, that if anie man, as the mindes of men are very diuers, should suspect or not be throughlie persuaded in some one, so manie and so diuers were added, that now al matter and occasion of doubting is quite remoued: so ye none may dout whether ye miracles of Christ were done by the power of God. But neither the diuel, nor anie other power that is finite can worke such miracles.Diuels can worke no miracles. And although manie thinges do seeme to be miracles: yet in truth theie are not, because they be wrought by the power of nature, as by herbs or some other thing, which [Page 70] the diuel secretlie can applie. And therefore manie thinges are done which are knowen to the skilful in the nature of thinges, that ye rude people accounte for miracles: as are those thinges which are done by Art magike, as a­boue also we haue noted.

The thirde note followeth,The 3. note. to wit the ma­ner of working miracles.Matt. 8, 26, 27 Sometime Christ by onely commanding, shewed miracles, to de­clare how he was the Lorde of nature;Iohn. 11, 41. some­time he did so by inuocation, to giue men to vnderstand from whome he had all thinges, and also to meete with their slander who said that in the name of Beelzebub, the chiefe of the diuels, he cast-out diuels; somtime by ye vse of one thing or another,Iohn 9, 6. as by clay or spittle, to shew that God worketh somtime by meanes, & somtime with-out means, somtime contra­rie to the nature of the meanes, sometimes tho­rough the touching of his garment, sometime by his onelie pleasure being absent.Matt. 9, 20. But the illusions of diuels which haue likenes of mi­racles,Mat. 14, 35. 36. are done after foolish and verie ridicu­lous meanes,Mark. 7, 29 30 whereby it maie easelie be per­ceaued who is the author of them.Luk. 7, 6, 7, & 10 For ye diuel, that no man maie suspect them to be done by the power of nature, commandeth wordes to be vsed that agree nothing at al to the matter, as if an horse be to be healed, these wordes are to be said, The sea is salt, and frosen in the Winter, and some such thing more absurd. Somtime yt [Page 71] woulfe putteth on à lambes skin, and wil haue the wordes of the holie Scripture to be vsed, as some verse of the Psalter to be recited; or à sentence out of the Gospel to be hung about ye necke; or à Masse or moe to be said, & som­time he wil haue beanes or other things to be put vnder an holie clout of lynen. But who can bring al his toies into remembrance, the which are better knowen to the bond-slaues of Satan, than to the godlie.

The 4. note is the efficient cause.The 4. note. Christ at no time sought occasion to work miracles, but al­waies vsed ye occasiō offered. He tooke neither time nor place to shewe his cunning: but sud­denlie alwaies, & according to the matter mi­nistred. But ye diuel, & deluders of the simple seeke both time & place conuenient for their iuggling, and haue their certain preparations. Againe Christ who excelled in true holines wrought miracles both by him selfe, & by his good and godlie disciples: but Satan doth his fained miracles by wicked, by naughtie persōs, witches, vncleane men, by wisemen, by fairies, by the reprobate, who no man can doubt, doe worke by guile, and fradulentlie.

The fifte note,The 5. note. is the cause mouing before the thing be don. The Sonne of God, & other good men at no time respected their own cō ­moditie, but the profite of others; yt it might appeare how in their miracles they sought not their own glorie, but were brought ther-vnto [Page 72] through the approbation of their faith, who required them, that men might vse to be­leeue God, and them▪ but wise-men, the mi­nisters of Sathan, either seeke profite, or vaine pleasure, or either to moue foolishe men to laughter, delectation, and admiration; or to terrifie them.

The sixt note is,The 6. note the ende. Christ at no time wrought any corporal miracle, but it had manie spiritual significations, whereof the bookes of diuines intreate at large: but the il­lusions of the diuel are comprised within the bounds of vaine ostentation.

These thinges I thought good briefelie to touch concerning the markes of true and false miracles, that al the worlde might see howe greate the vanitie of the Iewes is, that blush not by il wordes, against their owne consci­ence, to impaire the credite of Christe his mi­racles.

CHAP. 7.
Howe it was fore-tolde by the Prophetes, that the Iewes should set them­selues against the Messiah.

AND that the Iewes, of olde looking-for the Messiah, shoulde take offence at his person, and so stumble thereat, that they [Page 73] shoulde not acknowledge him, no not when he was present before their eies, it was long afore also fore-tolde by the Prophetes, that, when we see the euent to answere to the pro­phecies, we might fence our mindes against ye slaunders of the cursed Iewes, and vtterlie ab­horre their detestable contumacie.

When Isaiah saide, Though the number of the children of Israel were as the sande of the sea, Isai. 10, 21. 22. yet shal but à remnant be saued, Rom. 9, 27. shewed he not in plaine words, that the Iewes should reuolt from the Messiah, or more trulie should not acknowledge him, in whome alone salua­tion doth consist?

When the same Prophet in his 5. Chapter doeth saie,Isai. 5, 1. My beloued had à vine-yarde in à verie fruiteful hil, and he hedged it, and gathe­red out the stones of it, 2. and he planted it with the best plantes, and he built à tower in the middest thereof, 3. and made à wine presse therein. Nowe therefore, ô inhabitantes of Ierusalem and men of Iudah, iudge, I pray you, betweene me and my vine-yarde: doe not these wordes of the Pro­phet manifestlie set-foorth both the goodnes of God towarde the Iewes, and also the con­tumacie of the Iewes towardes God? By both which places it maie be gathered howe their election and state was conditionarie, as that which might not depende vpon the preroga­tiue of the flesh, but of the condition of faith.

[Page 74] Againe when the same Prophet in his 8. chapter doeth saie: Isai. 8. 13. Sanctifie the Lord of hostes, and let him be your feare, and let him be your dread,14. and he shalbe as à sanctuarie: but as à stum­bling stone and as à rocke to fal vppon, to both the howses of Israël, and as à snare, and as à net to the inhabitants of Ierusalem.15. And manie among them shal stumble, and shal fal, and shalbe broken, & shal be snared, and shalbe taken; doth not the e­uent answere also to this foresaying? And when he addeth, 16. Binde vp the testimonie: seale vp the lawe among my disciples; doth he not ex­preslie speake of the disciples of the Lorde, whome afterward he saith should be as signes and wonders in Israel?18. And again when he saith, To the law and to the testimonie if they spake not according to this worde,20. it is because there is no light in them, doeth not the Prophet here pro­pose the condition of getting saluation, the which al the Prophets do testifie most of the Iewes should neglect?

But wherefore comes this about? Surelie not of the counsel of God sending the Messi­ah,The cause of the reprobation of the Iewes. and by him inuiting al men vnto saluati­on; but through the malice of them, who, of­fended at the person of the Messiah, haue re­fused to accept him, because he was not such à one as theie are,What the Iewes mis­liked in Christ▪ to wit couetous, ambitions giuen vnto voluptuousnes (for euermore vi­ces are enimies to vertues, and the best men [Page 75] are enuied of the wicked) that he glittered not in his silkes, veluet, gold, siluer, & iewels; yt he had not his garde and gentlemen attending v­pon him; that he promised not pleasure and bodilie delightes; that by force of armes he vanquished not their neighbors about them; that he made none of them Dukes, and presi­dents of the nations of the worlde; finalie because they acknowledged not the spiritual glorie of his spiritual kingdome.

Thus hitherto we haue sufficientlie pro­ued the vanitie of the Iewes, The conclu­sion of this treatise a­gainst the Iewes. who giuen to worldlie pleasure, acknowledge not the true Messiah, enen Iesus Christ the sonne of Marie the virgin, & therfore falsely name themselues the people of GOD, and chalenge the title of the Church. Wherfore let vs, seeing that we are compassed about with so greate à cloude of witnesses,Heb. 12, 1. cast awaie euerie thing that presseth downe,2. and the sinne that hangeth so fast on: let vs runne with patience, the race that is set before vs, loking vnto Iesus the auctor and finisher of our faith.2. Tim. 4, 1. From heauen let vs looke for him who wil iudge the quick and the dead,Phil. 3, 20. 21. and change our vile bodie, that it maie be fashioned like vnto his glorious bodie, according to the working, where­by he is able euen to subdue al thinges vnto him­selfe.

To this onely Messiah ye sonne of God, toge­ther [Page 76] with the father and the holie spirite, be honor, might, and glorie worlds without end, and for euer more amen.

CHAP. 8.
Against Mahomet, or the Turkes, who take vpon them to be the true Church, and yet are not.

ALthough the madnes of the Turkes doth sufficientlie proue the auctor of their sect to be the diuel: yet both because more and more daylie their sect doeth increase, and godlinesse decrease in manie, who had rather be counted than be godlie indeed; and also be­cause Epicures fondlie doe reason of religion, I thinke it good to admonish the yonger sort concerning the Turkish sect, yt vnderstanding what it is, they maie abhorre it the more, and shun the same euen as they would the diuel himselfe.

And that the more distinctlie we maie en­trete hereof, I thinke it not amisse to examine these pointes; 1. What prophecies haue gone­before of this sect; 2, What was the occasion thereof; 3, Who was the auctor; 4, What companions he had; 5, Howe it increased & was confirmed; 6, What lawes it hath; 7, what fables are mixed to their guile & deceitfulnes; 8, What maner of Paradise it promiseth to ye [Page 77] fauorers; 9, By what arguments the impietie of Mahomet may be refuted; 10, And finalie, how the mindes of men may be comforted a­gainst the rage of satan ranging so in ye world.1. Prophe­cies of the Turkes.

And although diuers Prophets haue fore­told of the wickednes & tyrannie of ye Turks: yet in this place we wil onelie recite the pro­phecie of Daniel which he hath in his 7. chap­ter, the which is verie notable, and agreeth e­specialie vnto the tyme when this impietie & tyrannie did begin.Dan. 7. 7. After this, saith Daniel, I saw in the visions by night, and beholde, the fourth beaste, was fearful, and terrible, and verie strong: It had great iron teeth; it deuoured and brake in peeces and stamped the residue vnder his feete: and it was vnlike to the beastes that were before it: for it had tenne hornes. Hetherto spake Da­niel of the fourth, that is the Romaine Em­pire, and of the crueltie of the same, and of the tenne kinges in subiection thervnto: Now fo­loweth the prophecie of ye Turkish kingdom in these wordes:8. As I considered the hornes, beholde, there came vp among them another litle horne, before whom there were three of the first hornes pluckt-awaie, and behold, in this horne were eies like the eies of man, and à mouth speak­ing presumptuous thinges. 23. And afterwarde, The fourth beast shalbe the fourth kingdome in the earth, which shalbe vnlike to al the kingdomes, and shal deuoure the whole earth, 24. and shal treade it [Page 78] downe and break it in peeces. 24. And the ten hornes: out of this kingdom are ten kings that shal rise: & another shal rise after thē, & he shalbe vnlik to the first, 25. & he shal subdue three kings. And shal speak words against the most high, and shal consume the saints of the most high, & think that he may chang times and lawes. Hitherto Daniel, whose pro­phecie the euent hath proued to be true. For in the yeare of Christ 623. Heraclius being Emperour, Mahomet moued sedition, and foorth-with the Saracens or Arabians ioined together these three dominions Egypt, Syria, and Africa, which are the three hornes pluc­ked from those tenne hornes of the fourth beast. And Daniel ascribeth to this litle horne, that is to the Turkish Empire, three notes, whereby it may be knowne. The first where­of is à newe lawe contrarie to the law of God. For the eies doe signifie à law subtillie inuen­ted.Markes of the Turkish Empire. The seconde marke is, Blasphemie a­gainst the most high, which is Christ. For the mouth speaking words against the true God, signifieth blasphemies against the sonne of God. The thirde note is, crueltie towards the Church: And he shal consume, saith he, the sainctes of the most high. The fourth is, an en­deuor to abolish ye Gospel, & the Church. He shal think saith he, that he may change times and lawes. God would haue this prophecie to be extant for à strengthening of ye godlie against [Page 79] the crueltie of the Turks: yt when they should see the euent to answere to ye prophecie, they might not offend at the stumbling-blocke of so great persecution, and of such reuolting frō the true Church. And therefore being thus fore-warned by the Prophet, let vs take heart to our selues against this Turkish tyrannie, & wickednes, especiallie seeing howe the euent hath answered to the prophecie. For there haue foure Monarchies bin one after another. Now raigneth à people which are enemies to God, that openlie doeth abolish the Prophe­tical, and Apostolical scriptures.

But how sprang-vp this newe kingdome?2. Howe the Turkes be­gan, &c. who was the autor? who toke his part? Maho­met in his youth by reason of his pouertie li­ued by theft and robberie, afterward hauing heaped much riches together, he was à souldi­er among his contrie-men the Arabiansvnder Heraclius. In yt war he found occasion of prin­cipalitie, and power. For when the Arabians, being offēded with Heraclius for denieng thē their paie, & for his religion, had seuered thē ­selues frō him, Mahomet ioined himself to the angred soldiers, & stirred-vp their mindes a­aginst ye Emperor, & encouraged thē in their defection, wher-vpon by à certain companie of soldiers he was chosen to be their captaine (as they cōmonlie are extoled in euerie com­motion which fauour the wicked enterprise [Page 80] of the rebellious people, and set vppon the mightie & gouernours.) In this new capitane manie could not abide ye basenes of his birth, nor the odiousnes of his former life, especialie they loathed him for a disease he had, which was the falling sicknes. He therfore to redeeme himselfe from this contempt, which is an easie matter amonge the foolish common people, pretended à diuinitie in his doinges, faining himselfe to enter communication with God, and so when he talked, to be rauished out of himselfe, and seemed like vnto one afflicted with the falling sicknes. And therfore he said plainlie, but vntrulie, howe he was no more à capitane, and prince elected through the fa­uor of souldiors, but à prophet, and a messen­ger of the almightie God, that vnder the shew of diuinitie he might haue al men the more obedient to his wordes. But forsomuch as he was rude altogether and vnlearned, he adioy­ned to him selfe two masters and counselers that were Christians, the one wherof was Sergius an Arian,Sergius the Arrians. Nestorians. and ye other Iohn Nestorius, to whom there came à third, who was à Iewe, à Thalmudiste. Euerie of which defended his seueral sect. Whervppon Mahomet sup­posing that he should not onelie gratifie his companions, but also the more easilie allure al nations vnto himselfe, receiued al, that is, the pertinacie of Arius, the error of Nestorius, [Page 81] and the vaine inuentions of the Thalmu­diste. And therefore he receaued from the Iewe circumcision; from the Christians sun­drie washinges as it were Baptismes; and with Sergius he denied the diuinitie of Christ. Nowe some worshipped idols; others were baptized, and some-what instructed in Chri­stianitie, who, as soone as theie had left the Romane Emperour for the hatred they bare a­gainst him, renounced foorth-with the reli­gion which he defended. Euen after the example of those tenne tribes of Israel, which reuolting from the house of Dauid vnto Ro­boam, despised the lawes of their fathers, and went from the seruice of the onelie true God vnto the inuocation of Diuels.

Mahomets manner to enlarge and esta­blish his kingdome was this,3. Howe the Turks mul­tiplied, and encreased. which also his maisters taught him: He saide howe God at the first to mankinde sent Moses, after him Iesus Christ, who were indued with the pow­er to worke miracles. But men gaue smal heede to them. Therefore he determined to send Mahomet à warriour with-out miracles, that whome miracles had not moued, wea­pons might compel. He saide howe he was the last messenger, and that after him none should come; howe Christe in the Gospel had prophecied of him, and howe tidinges was of him through a wonderful light which [Page 82] passed from Eua by succession of kinde tho­rough al women euen to his verie mother. See the subtiltie of this knaue Mahomet, who knowing that he was destitute altogether of the heauenlie gift to worke miracles, which thing was at hand, he fained he was sent with the sworde. But this armed man at the length was vanquished, and receaued à sore wounde in his mouth, wherebie he lost some of his cheeke teeth, and was throwen into à ditch, and put to à shameful foile, and that the verie daie before, he had from the oracle of GOD promised victorie to him and his. Yea and while he was yet à common theefe he was of­tentimes beaten sore of the Drianites whose camels he set-vpon returning from Mecha.

And that citie which hath him nowe in ho­nour, sometime adiudged him vnto death, as à verie hurtful theefe, and appointed à reward, if anie coulde bring him vnto them either quicke or deade. This champion of the Lord (for sooth) first à theefe, afterward à se­ditious souldier; then a runne-agate, after that à capitane of à rebellious hoste, perswa­deth light heads, enimies to the true religion, howe he is the messenger of God; wherebie we maie gather howe greate the power of Satan is in them, whiche imbrace not the trueth.

Whereof it is that at this daie that aduer­sarie [Page 83] of God defendeth his blasphemies a­gainst God by Turkishe and Mahometical force, according to the prophecie of Daniel.

It foloweth that we speake of the lawes of Mahomet,4. The lawes of Mahome [...] which are partlie political, & part­lie ceremonial or of seruice: but of these I wil touche verie fewe, wherebie it wil be easie to iudge of the rest. First of al, to his Arabians, that is, to poore men, accustomed to liue vpon the spoile, he aloweth theft, and setteth à lawe of reuengement. Hurt him, saith he, which hurt you. He saith also, He that either killeth his e­nemie, or is killed by his enemie entreth into Para­dise. He permitteth men to haue manie wiues. He aloweth diuorcement for a trifeling cause, and receauing againe vpon smal occasion. Nowe, I praie you, what is more against na­ture than such lawes, if theie maie be caled lawes which peruert the lawe of nature, that is common to all men? On the otherside he hath giuen some lawes which make to the in­crease of loue and goodwil among men. He commandeth almes to be giuen, and promi­seth paradise to such as giue liberalie, if so be theie haue couragiouslie foughten against the enemies. He willeth punishment to be gi­uen to the poore for their offences: But to the good law he annexeth impietie, namelie how therebie theie doe merite remission of sinnes. He hath ceremonies, washings, & circumcisiō; [Page 84] fiue times in à daie he compelleth his to praie in the temple. But that hypocrisie hel­peth no whit, seeing theie are voide of the propiciatorie, without which there is none accesse vnto GOD. He willeth to absteine from swines fleshe. Hetherto of the lawes.

The fables which he intermixeth,5. Maho­mets fables. as diuine mysteries, be verie ridiculous and foolish, of which I wil recite foure, yt by them the rest, as the Lion by his talantes, maie be iudged. This stout souldior of the Lord, Mahomet by name, telleth how by the conduction of Ga­briel the Angel he ascended into heauen to talke with God. Where first of al meeteth with him an Angel ten thousand times huger than the whole worlde: for whome he got à pardon of God, whom he had offended, bee­ing requested▪ to make intercession vnto God for him. Which done, God put his hand vp­pon Mahomet, whereby he was stroken with so extreme à colde, that it pearced vnto the verie marrowe of his backe. He saide that God was carried in à chaire by eight Angels, whose head he vainelie reporteth is of such à bignes, that the swiftest birde that is, in a thou­sand yeeres can-not flie from one part thereof vnto an other.

The second fable like the same, A fable tou­ching the absteining from wine. where-vp­pon the prohibition of wine is builded, is this: There was saith he, two Angels of God, namelie, [Page 85] Horroth and Marroth, sent from God on à time from heauen into the world, appointed to gouerne and to instruct mankinde, with these commande­mentes, that theie should neither kil, nor iudge vn­iustlie, nor drinke wine. So à long time theie were so taken, and knowen to be iudges ouer the whole worlde. Vpon à certaine daie à woman of al other the fairest came vnto them hauing à matter a­gainst her husband; who to make the iudges like her cause, inuited them vpon à certaine daie vnto dinner. And beeing at their good cheere, she her­selfe bringeth fine meates & furnisheth the table with boules of wine, yea she serueth, and seeth that theie lack nothing, & biddeth thē to eate, to drinke & spare naught. What needs many words? her faire words ouercame them, and drunke with wine theie burned after their faire hostesse (see the chastitie of Mahomets Angels!) being ouercome theie de­sired her companie▪ she promiseth vpon à condition, if one of them would tel her howe theie vse to as­cend into heauen, and the other howe she might de­scend. The condition they like. When she had lear­ned the same suddenlie she was lifted-aloft and as­cended into heauen. Which when GOD sawe, and had sifted the cause, he made her the daie star, as beautiful among the Starres as euer she was among women. To the Angels, called before his iudgement seate, he appointed that theie should choose either the paines of this life, or of the world to come; who chose the paines of this life. [Page 86] Wherefore theie are hanged vpon iron chaines with their heades downewarde in the pit Behil vntil the daie of iudgement. For which cause the vse of wine is forbidden to the folow­ers of Mahomet, least theie fal into the like peril.

Such like stuffe is the fable touching the prohibition of swines fleshe. A fable of Mahomet touching the forbid­ding of swines flesh. When al liuing creatures, saith he, were in the Arch of Noah, the Elephant caste-backewarde, whereof sprang an hogge, who with his snoute turned vp dongue, whereof sprang à mouse, the which gnawed the hempe wherewithal the boordes of the ship were ioined. Hence Noah was stroken with à marue­lous terror, and constrained to aske counsel of the Lorde, who for remedie at that pinch willed Noah to strike à lion vpon the fore-head, from the no­strels of which Lion being moued, lepped-out à cat, which hunted the mouse, and deliuered man­kinde from so greate daunger. This was the greeuous cause, forsooth, whie the fleshe of swine is forbidden to bee eaten of the Sa­racens.

Here-vnto let vs adde the fable concerning ye last iudgement. A fable of the laste iudgement. Of this he saith, God shal giue the Angel of death in charge, that he kil eue­rie creature which doth breath, aswel al the An­gels, as al the diuels, and all men, sheepe, fishes, [Page 87] beastes, and cattel, that al maie be dead except God himselfe. This done he wil cal the An­gel of death, saieng, O Adriel, is anie thing yet remaining of al my creatures? And he shal aun­swere, Nothing Lorde, but I thie weake and fee­ble seruant. Then shal the Lorde saie vnto him, seeing thou hast killed al my creatures, goe thou thie waies betweene Paradise, and hel, and af­terwarde kil thie selfe, and die. So the vnhappie wretch departed, and in that prescribed middle­place, lieng on the ground wrapped in his winges, he choaked him-selfe with such an horrible roa­ring, as had the celestial spirites, and earthlie cre­atures bin aliue, theie could not choose but haue died thereat. After which time the world shal stande voide 40. yeeres together. Which expi­red, the Lorde holding heauen and earth in his fiste, shal saie as foloweth, Where be nowe the Kinges, Princes, & Potentates of this worlde? Whose is the Kingdome, the Dominion, and the power? Speake if ye haue anie truth in your words? And these wordes thrice repeated, he wil raise­vp Seraphuel, and saie to him, Take this trum­pet, and descend into Ierusalem, and sounde there. Then Seraphuel, hauing receaued the trumpet, which is as long as à iourneie of fiftie yeeres, standing in Ierusalem shal blowe the trumpet, and out of the same shal blowe al the righteous soules, which flieng al the [Page 88] worlde ouer shal-be dispersed vnto their bodies wheresoeuer theie be, and at this first sound al the bones shalbe gathered together. Then after fourtie yeeres he shal blowe againe, at which sounde the bones shal take flesh. And fourtie yeeres after that againe, when he shal blowe the thirde time, al soules shal come into their bodies. This done à fire flaming from the West shal driue al crea­tures vnto Ierusalem, whither when theie are come it shal cease. Then whē for the space of four­tie yeeres theie haue swimmed in their owne sweate, looking stil for the iudgement, theie shal cal Adam saying, Father why hast thou begotten vs for such miseries and tormentes? Can you so suf­fer vs, Father, to be tossed vncertainelie betweene hope and feare? O Father cal-vpon God that he would altogether bring to an end whatsoeuer he wil do with vs betweene Hel and Paradise. A­dam wil aunswere: O sonnes, ye knowe howe tho­rough the persuasion of Satan, I disobeied the com­maundement of GOD; therefore goe yee vn­to Noah. Then turning vnto Noah, theie shal saie, O Father Noah, thou elect of God, make thou intercession for vs. He shal answere, I did what I could, I saued you in the flood: Mine office is nowe out, but goe you vnto Abraham. So then theie shal cal-vpon Abraham, saieng, O Abraham the Father of the faithful, and of holines, cast thine eies of compassion vpon vs, & shew mercie. To whō Abraham, what praie you vnto me? Remember you [Page 89] not, how à long while like à vagabond, & idolater, & vncircumcised I went astraie; I cannot helpe you; but cal vpon Moses. Then wil they crie vnto Moses, saying, O thou beloued messenger of God, and prophet, thou seruant of God, heare vs. He wil answere, whom cal you for? Did not I giue you à lawe, and confirmed the same with miracles, and yet you beleeued not? Had you beleeued me, I woulde do what you require; but go ye vnto Iesus Christ. Then turned vnto Christ, they shal say, O Iesu Christ, spirit, word and power of God, let thy mercie moue thee, & go betweene God and vs. Then shal Christ say to them, what ye require of me your selues haue forgon. I was sent indeede to you in the power of God, and in the worde of truth, yet went yee astray, and after I had preached to you, ye made me your God, and so yee haue loste my benifite; but go ye vnto the last prophet of al, Mahomet, vnto whom being turned theie shal say, O thou faithful messenger and frend of God, how greeuously haue we sinned in giuing no credit to thy wordes, heare vs ô gratious prophet, beside whom we haue no refuge. For after thee there is none in whom we shal trust. Heare vs by the power which God hath giuen thee. So Gabriel shal come forth, and shal not suffer his frende to be of no pow­er, his fellowes shal come before the face of God, & God shal say to them, I know wherefore ye do come, be it fro me that I should in any thing make the prayer of my messenger to be frustrate. Then [Page 90] à bridge being made here ouer bel, there shal be present à paire of balance whereby the deedes of al­men being waied, they shal walke vpon the bridge. So the godlie shal goe-ouer, but the damned shal fal downe into hel. To euerie one shal a booke be giuen of al his deedes, and the iudgement shal en­dure 5000. yeeres, then shal Mahomet say to God, O Lord, al these with a right face doe hasten to re­ceaue this booke. Last of al death shal be changed into à ramme, and be brought betweene Paradise and hel.

The Paradise that Mahomet promiseth to his folowers,The Turkes Paradise. is more meete for swine then for men created after the likenes of God. The golden ground of Paradise, saith he, is distingui­shed with precious stones and swet flowers set thick together, planted with al fruitful trees, the plea­sant riuers running through the greene feeldes, whereof some powre-out milke, others white honie, others the purest wine, there shal they be clothed with al sortes of colors except blacke. The first dish at the table shalbe the liuer of the fish Albis; they shal neuer make an end of eating, and colling wenches. This knaue knewe how these thinges would like foolish soldiers right wel, which are neuer satisfied with wine and wo­men. with such ridiculous fables is the Alcho­ran replenished, but these fewe I haue writ­ten-out, that the vanitie of this villaine be­ing [Page 91] found-out, we may the more earnestlie beg at the handes of God, that he woulde not suffer this vagabonde and theife to enter vpon his Church, but shewe mercie vppon vs, and not punishe vs according vnto the multitude of our sinnes.

But howe commeth it to passe,What c [...] ­seth the Turkes to be strong. seeing these are so fond and so ridiculous, that men of courage in Turkie doe not forsake this de­ceauer, and deluder of mankinde? with foure bulwarkes as it were he hath hedged his law about, that no way be open to subuert the same.

Firste hee commaundeth to kill them which speake against the Alchoran. Second­lie he forbiddeth conference to be had with men of à contrarie sect or religion. Thirdlie. he prohibiteth credite to be giuen to anie be­side the Alchoran. Fourthlie, he commaun­deth them to separate themselues altogether from other men, and to saie, Let me haue my lawe, and take you yours; ye are free from that which I doe, and I likewise from that which you doe. More-ouer to driue-away al feare of damnation from the minde of his disci­ples, he saith howe euerie man shal be saued by his owne religion (he onely excepted which reuolteth from the Alchoran vnto ano­ther lawe) the Iewes by the lawe of Moses; [Page 92] Christians by the lawe of the Gospel; and the Saracens by the lawe of Mahomet. But seeing this altogether is friuolous and false, I wil rea­son no more nor dispute hereof: firme and vnmoueable is this sentence: He that obeieth not the sonne, Iohn 3. 36. shal not see life, but the wrath of God abideth on him.

And although hitherto it hath abundant­lie beene shewed howe greate the vanitie of the Turkish sect is:6. Argumēts to confute the Turke. yet for the more confirma­tion of the mindes I wil here-vnto adde seuen argumentes, whereby the furie of Mahomet is euidentlie refuted, which be these.

The first is,1. Argumēt. The voice of God in Daniel doeth pronounce that the kingdome, and ser­uice of the Turkes shal arise against God and his sainctes. Therefore there is no doubt but this sect is of the diuel.

The seconde,2. Argumēt. It is impossible that that cō ­panie shoulde be the Church of God, which of purpose reiecteth the writinges of the Prophetes and Apostles, the which haue the testimonies of God, and that verie manie. But seeing Mahomet doeth reiecte them, it cannot be that his religion is of God.

The third,3. Argumēt. It is impossible that those lawes are of God which commaunde theft, main­taine the lust of the flesh, and allowe mixed Venerie, which the lawes of Mahomet doe.

The fourth,4. argument. It is impossible that that re­ligion [Page 93] is of God, which placeth the chiefest happines in the pleasures of meate, drinke, & Venerie, which Mahomet doeth euidentlie.

The fift,5. Argumēt. That is the true religion which sheweth the meanes whereby à man may at­taine vnto felicitie, & wherby à man becom­meth as it were one thing with God, ye image of God, wherevnto he was made, being re­pared in him: which the lawe of Mahomet doth not.

The sixt,6. Argumēt. whatsoeuer springeth of fraud, is defended by force and crueltie, and ten­deth vnto the destruction of mankinde, is not wrought by God: and what else, I beseech you, maie be found in Mahomet?

The seuenth,7. Argumēt That is the most auncient and best religion, which hath the consent of al times, and the testimonies of Moses, of the Prophetes, of Christ, and of the Apostles. But with this ye pestilence of Mahomet sprūg­vp 900. yeares sithence, spred abroad by blo­die warre, is at extreme variance. Therefore there is no doubt, but the auctor of the same is he which slielie deceaued our first parentes, and brought mankinde into these miseries, from whence it can not escape, vnlesse it ap­prehende Christ by the hande, that is, vnlesse by faith it rest-vppon Iesus Christ the onelie mediator.

Last of al,7. Consolati­ons against the Turkes. it is good to think-vpon com­fortes [Page 94] against the rage of Mahomet, & power of the Turkes.The 1. Con­solation. The first whereof may be taken out of the Prophecie which Daniel sub­ioineth to ye prophecies of the Empire of the Turkes.Dan. 7, 27. The Kingdome, saith he, and dominion; and the greatnesse of the kingdome vnder the whole heauen shal be giuen to the holie people of the most high, whose kingdome is an euerlasting kingdome, and al powers shal serue and obey him. God by this prophecie doeth signifie howe the sainctes after the troubles of this life shal enioie an euerlasting and heauenly kingdome so that al things shal be in subiection to them. And then shal it fal-out that euerie knee both of things in heauen, Phil. 2, 10. and things in earth, & things vnder the earth shal bow to Iesus, and that either willinglie, as children; or perforce, as seruants. For al thinges must confesse that Iesus Christ is the soueraigne Lord. 11. Nowe forsomuch as we see the euent to haue answered to other pro­phecies of Daniel, we maie not doubt of the euent of this prophecie, which as-yet is loked for touching the glorie of the Church.

The second consolation may be fetcht frō [...]ie doctrine of the Gospel,The 2. Con­solation. which declareth howe the Church in this life is euermore sub­iect to the crosse, according to these wordes, Iudgement must begin at the house of God. 1. Pet. 4, 17 For the children of God in this life through the prouidence of God are chastised, and that for [Page 95] manie causes, which afterward wee wil de­clare.

The third consolation may be taken from the example of Christ,The 3. Con­solation. who so long as he li­ued in this worlde, was diuerslie afflicted: not­withstanding he ouercame thē al, & through death found life. Hitherto the examples of the sainctes are to be referred.

The fourth consolation maie be fetcht from the vse of persecution,The 4. Con­solation. and from the necessitie of the crosse: but of these thinges wee shal haue occasion to speake more in the opening of the sixt verse.

CHAP. 9.
Against the superstitious Muscouites.

THE Muscouites, although they beleeue Iesus the sonne of the virgin Marie to be the verie Messiah; and acknowledge the Pa­triarch of Constantinople; and thinke more rightlie of some pointes, than Papistes do (for they charge the Bishop of Rome with defection from the seuen first synodes) yet haue they lost the puritie of the doctrine of the Gospel, and are ignorant of the true seruing of God. For they cal-vpon sainctes, and chieflie vpon one Nicholas: they haue manie monasteries of Nunnes, and Monkes, they tie the remissiō of their sinnes to certaine folish ceremonies: [Page 96] they fal-downe superstitiouslie before idoles and images: and haue manie lawes contrarie to the law of nature, & of the ten-comman­dementes.

And albeit they minister baptisme with­out salt and spittle:Muscouites somwhat in­clined vnto religion. yet for al that more super­stitiously than either Iewes or Ethnikes, they vse diuerse washings, as baptisme, at certaine times of the yeare. Likewise they disalowe not the horrible mixture with beast. So that if there be any Church among them, it lurketh in bannishment as it were.

Merchantes report how the Bible is trās­lated newelie into their language;Merchantes notable meanes to spreade a­broade the Gospel. and howe such as embrace the Augustane confession, are suffered to be among them. Whereby there is some hope, that by little and little their doctrine may be purged, and their manners amended: especialie, seeing euen they them selues doe take longer nauigations than in times passed they haue done, and manie strangers come vnto them for traffique sake. So that we may hope that in time they maie be brought to Christ through godlie mer­chantes, by whome the Lorde in these later daies hath begunne marueilouslie to spead-abroad the Gospel.

CHAP. 10.
Against the idolatrous Papistes.

[Page 97] FOrsomuch as afterwarde by occasion of the third verse we shal entreat of the thre­folde state of the Church in this life, namelie à quiet, troubled, and bannished; & also of the outwarde markes, and inwarde properties of the true Church, I wil put-of this dispu­tation against the Papistes till I come vnto that place,Chap. 16. The summe of Popish impietie▪ where I wil shewe, how the forme of the Papistical gouernement is cleane con­trarie to the forme of the kingdom of Christ; howe the doctrine of the law, of the Gospel, and of the seruice of God is foulie corrupted in the Popedome; howe the sacramentes are partlie mangled, partly defiled with humaine traditions, and augmented contrarie vnto the worde of God;Of the Pa­pistes you shal read at large in the 23. 24. and 25. chap. of this 1. part. how many foolish and ridicu­lous ceremonies are not receaued onely, but preferred also before the holie scripture; how the discipline both of the cleargie, and of the Church is vtterlie decaied; finalie, howe al thinges are ful of abhominable superstitions, and idolatrous worshippinges, that no man with à cleare conscience maie ioine himselfe to their companie.

CHAP. 11.
Against voluptuous worldlinges, Epicures or Atheistes.

[Page 98] The Epicures secretlie to themselues deride al religion,Atheistes. whose hearts the God of this world by his craft and subtletie hath bewit­ched. They saie that nations are gouerned by the shewe of religion, euen as horses are by the bridle and spurres, and that religion serues to that ende and for nothing else. But this weakeneth not the power and nature of religion,Men natu­ralie thinke there is à God. but rather confirmeth the same. For it sheweth howe God himselfe hath ingraffed à care of religion within the heartes of men: that euen by the shewe of religion, men may be guided as by the face of virtue, and arte of wisedome. Nowe if any doe saie, without wisedome assemblies of men, cannot be go­uerned, and maintained, what may ensue? Therefore that wisedome is nothing at al: who can so gather of the same? yea rather yt wise­dome is à great force, light, and power of mans wit. So that man is borne vnto godlines; but as through humane ignorance he ming­leth some wickednes, and follie vnto perfecte wisedome, and other artes, and virtues: so doth he the same to religion, whereby often­times it degenerateth into superstition. And therefore Cicero saith truelie:Cicero lib. 1. de legibus. There is no peo­ple either so wilde, or so sauage, if it be ignoraunt what kinde of God it shoulde haue, yet it knoweth howe it should haue one.

[Page 99] What shoulde I speake of the householde witnesse,By our con­science we maie gather how there is à God. euen the conscience, which wee al carrie about with vs? Certes such is ye force of ye same, that perforce it wil compel thee to acknowledge yt there is a God, which with due obedience wil be worshipped. It testifieth that God is the reuenger of wickednes, yea after this life. Plato writeth; that manie when they are in health doe thinke al but toies which is spoken of hel, but at the point of death, when their conscience pricketh them, they are troubled & vexed out of mea­sure, caling their former life into minde. Such is the force of the conscience euen in the ve­rie wicked, especialie when they must needes die. This testimonie of the conscience is dout­lesse the iudgemēt of God: who hath imprin­ted in our mindes à certaine affection to reli­gion, tending to this end, that conioyned to God we maie be perfectlie happie: for which end we were both at the first created, and af­terward redeemed.

Now the Epicures seeing they cannot de­nie this power of the conscience, the wretches, seeke I cannot tel what comforte out of à fa­ble of Lazarus,A fable of Lazarus. whome our Lorde raised af­ter he had beene deade foure daies. They faine how Lazarus was requested of his friends to tel thē the state of the soule, when his body lay dead in ye graue. He promised, as their fable [Page 100] is, that after his death he would leaue à book, whereinto he woulde writ such thinges as he knewe concerning the state of the soules after this life. What should manie wordes? They faine that, Lazarus beeing deade, a booke was found, which opened, not somuch as one letter could be seene therein. Whereof, that is of one fable they gather another, how that the soules either doe perish with the bo­dies, or be so drowned with deepe sleepe, that they doe not so much as feele, much lesse knowe, anie thing at al.The Pope is keeper of the Epicures booke. By this restoratiue the Epicures, especialie the Pope, who, they saie, is the keeper of this booke, and manie of his Cardinals, and Bishops, who lacke at no time scholers at their wil, chieflie amonge them, which bewitched either with the plea­sures, riches, or glorie of this world, woulde gladly haue the soules perish with the bodies, that they might not or dare abide the paines of their wicked life, endeuour to extinguish the power of the conscience.

But the holie scripture doeth verie force­ablie confute the vanitie of these men,Arguments to proue th [...] immortali­tie of the soule. where­in first of al we may consider the creation of the soule of man, which is created after the likenesse of God. By which likenes vndoub­tedlie beside the conformitie with God, the immortalitie of ye soule is signified: the which is not of the earth as the body is, but the brea­thing [Page 101] of God,Gen. 2. 7. as the scripture speaketh, wher­of the Epistle vnto the Hebrewes distingui­sheth betweene fleshlie parentes,Heb. 12, 9. and God, the father of the spirits.

Secondlie,From the testimonie of the holie scripture. Christ adhorteth his disciples not to feare them which kil the bodie, but are not able to kil the soule: but to feare him, who is able to destroy both soule and bodie in hel. Matt. 10. 28 Doeth not Christ hereby giue vs plainelie to vnderstand that the soules after death doe liue?From ex­amples. But the state after this life is diuers according to the person either of the beleeuer, or vnbeleeuer: which thing the Lorde manifestlie, doth shew in the example of Lazarus & the rich man.Luk. 16, 22. 23. Whereof the soule of one in the bosome of Abraham, the soule of the other in torments, doe expect the daie of iudgement. In that it is saide howe Lazarus is in the bosome of Abraham,What is to be gathered by Lazarus being in A­brahams bo­some. we haue to learne first that Laza­rus through faith was the sonne of Abrahā. For children are wont to be carried in the armes of their parentes. Secondlie, that La­zarus liueth, is cherished, and fareth wel, e­uen as à childe in the bosome of his father. Thirdlie, that he is in the same state, and place of happines which father Abraham is. Fourth­lie, howe there is à certaine mutual, and soue­raigne good-wil betweene the soules that-rest in the bosome of Abraham. For al are ioined together with brotherlie affection.

[Page 102] This verie thing is taught by the saieng of Christ vnto the theife,From the authoritie of Christ. To daie shalt thou be with me in Paradise, Luk. 23, 43. which is not, that the soule shal either perish or sleepe, but to be happie, & to perceaue their blessednes, although not so fullie as hereafter. Christ giueth vs to learn that the soules of Abraham, Isaak, and Iaakob doe liue,Mat. 22, 32 when he saith, The God of Abraham, the God of Isaak, and the God of Iaakob is not the God of the dead, but of the liuing.

What meaneth Peter when he saith,Christ his preaching vnto the spirites in pri­son, what is signifieth. Christ went, and preached vnto the spirits that are in prison? In the dayes of Noah the spirite of Christ preached to men, whose soules, Peter testifieth, were in prison. The same Peter af­firmeth how the end of faith is the saluation of souls. 1. Pet. 3, 19 The saluatiō surelie can be neither death nor à sounde sleepe.1. Pet. 1, 9▪ Neither is it à darke thing which Paul saith,Phil. 2, 23. I desire to be loosed, and to be with Christ. Salomon in the last chapter of Ec­clesiastes,Eccle. 12, 7. doeth say, vntil dust returne to the earth as it was, and the spirite returne to God that gaue it: Heb. 12, 9. In which respect he is caled by ye Apo­stle, The father of spirits. Hitherto belongeth yt in ye wisedom of Salomō, The soules of the righteous are in the hand of God, Wisd. 3, 1. and no torment shal touch them. With this agreeth that saying of the Psalmist,Psa. 116, 15 Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his sainctes. And Steuen ful of the spi­rite:Act. 7, 59. Lord Iesus recieue my spirite.

[Page 103] Moreouer whereas they obiect how there shal be one iudgement whereas rewardes shal be rendred for the godlie, and punish­ment appointed for the wicked, we confesse the same is true, yet doth it not folow thereby that the soules both of the sainctes and of sin­ners doe either perishe with their bodies, or doe sleepe vntil the last daie. For although the soules of the righteous are in Paradise, and the soules of ye vngodlie in torments: yet haue neither the soules of the godlie perfect ioye, nor the vngodlie al their paines vntil the daie of iudgement doe come. Chrysostome speaking of Abel, and Noah doeth saie: Theie preuented vs in the fight, and they shal not preuen [...] vs in receauing the crowne. Because their is one time appointed of crowning al men. Augustine in manie places describeth certain secret places, wherein the soules of the righteous are con­tained, vntil they receaue the crowne, and ful glorie: whereas the wicked in the meane while are in paine expecting the euerlasting torments of the righteous iudgement. These thinges therefore are not contrarie, the soules of the godlie are with Christ in heauen, and the vngodlie in paine, and that an vniuersal iudgement shal be, where the righteous shal receiue perfect glorie, and the reprobate eter­nal torments, after the soules come againe in­to their bodies.

[Page 104] Notwithstanding although by these & such like arguments the Epicures are conuinced of ye state of the souls after death:An obiectiō of Epicures. yet are they not quiet, but they proceed in asking, and they vrge, as they thinke, verie grauelie. The Iewes saie they,Diuersities of religion. affirme how their lawes be Gods lawes; the Saracens, euen the maior part of mankinde, preferre theirs; the Muscouites de­fende their religion to the death; the Papistes, they glorie of primacie and succession, and therefore they cal themselues Catholikes, & blush not to tearme al other heretikes; yee Lutherans also stand to your religion, neither doe ye agree verie wel together. In this con­fusion of iudgements, what is to be done? who are to be credited?

We haue sufficientlie alreadie shewed the vanitie of the Iewes,Answere. Saracens, & Muscouites, as touching the Papistes and vs, heare vs both, conferre waigh with iudgement the reasons of vs both, marke which of vs doe drawe our argumentes out of the foun­taines of our Sauiour, and whiche out of the filthie puddle of mans inuentions; so shal you easilie find out the trueth, and the waie to iudge aright. But if this shal seeme te­dious vnto thee, stinke thou as thou wilt in thine owne filthines; what thou gettest therby thou shalt one daie find. If it plese you, behold [Page 105] your end in the 37. and 73. Psalmes. Nowe concerning the dissension betwene ourselues, it ouerthroweth not the trueth of the foun­dation, which al of vs in à manner with one consent defend.

And thus much against the Epicures. For I thinke it not good to spend anie moe wordes to swine. And therefore once againe I turne my selfe vnto men.

CHAP. 12.
1. Of the true Church, what it is; 2. Whence it is; 3. Howe gouerned, and defended, &c.

WHat is the true Church?The true church, wha [...] The Taberna­cles of the Lorde of Hostes, as our Psalme defineth. That is, the true Church is that which of the Lorde is both gathered, gouer­ned, and protected; which harkeneth vnto, cleaueth, and is obedient to the Lord of hosts; which hath ye Lord of Hostes dwelling in it; which is in a strange countrie in banishment, tending towardes her countrie by folowing her captaine Christ. These thinges are so lin­ked-together and folowe of the first, that no waie theie can be separated.1. God the gatherer of the true church.

First therefore the true Church is gathered by the Lord of Hostes. For he by his worde [Page 106] gathereth to him selfe out of mankinde à Church,Mar. 16, 15 16. according to that: Go ye into al the world, and preach the Gospel to euerie creature. He that shal beleeue and be baptised, shalbe saued: but he that wil not beleeue, shalbe damned. For seeing without the Church there is no salua­tion, by the worde of the Gospel men are ca­led with-out respect of nations, and persons out-of the kingdome of darkenesse vnto the kingdome of light, that is vnto the Church, & receaued by faith, whervnto ye outward signe Baptisme is added,The medi­tatiōs which baptisme doth offer. as it were a watchworde of warre, whereby theie are admonished of the purging which is made by the holie spirit after à certaine secrete manner, as our Lorde doth teach in the 3. Chapter of Iohn▪ of thin­king vpon holines continualie; of the crosse, and glorie of the Church; of death, and resur­rection from death; & of the true God, which is the Father, the Sonne, and the holie Ghost, which true and onelie God, theie are bounde, being receaued into the Church, to worship with true holinesse both here in this world, & after the resurrection for euermore. This true Church in the first Epistle of Iohn, and also in the Apostolical Creede, is caled The commu­nion of Saintes, that is, the felowship of al men that are sanctified in Iesus Christ, through the holie Ghoste.

This sanctification is then wrought,Howe and when we are sancti­fied. when [Page 107] we beleeue the worde of the Gospel, and by à liuelie faith rest our selues vpon the Lorde of Hostes, which is Iesus Christe. And that the true Church is as we saie, it maie be proued by that notable example of our Father Abraham. For he at such time as he was in Chaldea,Abraham à paterne of the true Church. heard the voice of the Lorde, and obeied him; being caled out of Hur of the Chaldeans, & from the companie of idolaters, he seuered & separated himselfe from the wicked world, both in heart, in wil, in faith, in obedience toward God, and in confession. Where-vnto the name of the Church doth fitlie agree.Fruite ga­thered from the e [...]ymo­logie of the Church. For, as the Grecians caled that companie, which by à common crier was called from the other people, to heare the minde of the Senate, à Churche; so the Apostles take the Churche of Christ for that companie of men which by the preachers of the worde are called from the kingdome of Satan to the hearing, and folow­ing of Christ, and to the seuering and separa­ting them-selues from the wicked world, and swarmes of the reprobate, both in heart, wil, faith, obedience towardes God, and in confes­sion.Who à member of the church. So that whosoeuer disioineth himselfe from the prophanitie of the worlde, and by faith ioineth himselfe to Christ with à purpose truelie to serue him, he is à member of the Church, and à partaker of al the good thing [...] of Christ.

[Page 108] And although greate is the weakenesse of al men,Howe the faithful be holie. and manifolde flames of wicked affections do often arise, yea in the verie god­lie, against which in spirite theie doe contend: yet he abideth in the Church, & is holie, who­soeuer keepeth faith & à good conscience, or à good purpose. For as the conscience beeing wast [...]d, shipwracke is made of faith: so where there is à good conscience, there is faith, by which we enioie the most excellent of al trea­sures, euen the righteousnes of Christ, where­bie we please God.No respect of persons before God. Neither must we thinke vpon anie difference here either of nations, persons, or sexe. For faith maketh al alike, as touching the right of the kingdome. And although diuers and sundrie be the giftes: yet serue theie al for the vnitie of the Church. This vnitie of the true Church gathered out of manie and sundrie nations,Vnitie of the Church like vnto a pome-gra­nate. as it were into one house or familie, is excelentlie shadowed by à Pome-granate tied to à bel. For as in the Pome-granate vnder one outward barke ma­nie granes are inwardlie vnited-together: so infinite people of the Church are couered vn­der the vnitie of the Church, the which agree together through true charitie, albeit in giftes and caling theie are distinguished. The bel annexed signifieth the voice of such as preach the Gospel, wherebie the members of the Church are gathered as it were into one bodie.

[Page 109] This true Church,2. God the gouernour & the pro­tector of the true Church seeing it is the taberna­cle of the Lorde of Hostes, is gouerned, and protected by him, so that the gates of hel, that is, the counsels, snares, and batteringes whether it be of the worlde or of the diuel, cannot preuaile against the same.The Church à smal flock in compari­son yet vn­moueable. The Church in deede, compared to that huge companie of the reprobate and damned diuels, is but à ve­rie litle flocke: yet continueth it vnmoueable against the force and power of all aduersaries whatsoeuer. For notwithstanding manie citi­zens of the Church be murthered, and put to sundrie tormentes, yet is not the Church a­bolished therbie, but in death it selfe theie get the victorie while theie keepe their faith and confession.Psa. 116, 15 For precious in the sight of the Lorde is the death of his Saintes, as that which is the gate vnto euerlasting blessednesse. Therefore was it wel saide of Augustine, The men of this worlde are vnhappilie happie: but the Martyrs were happilie vnhappie. For theie were for a time vnhappie, The church like an I­land in the sea. but happie for euer. The Prophet Isaiah compareth the Church to an Iland, in his 2. Chapter. For as an Iland placed in the sea, al­though it be beaten with many a cruel storme and tempest that arise, yet abideth inuincible, because the Lord hath set à bound to the Sea, which it cannot ouerpasse: so the Church a­bideth safe notwithstanding manifold storms do beate vpon the same. For the Lorde of [Page 110] Hostes defendeth and protecteth it, who wil not suffer tyrants to vse more crueltie against ye same than it can wel indure, or shalbe good for it. As often therefore as we heare, how the tyrantes of the world doe spoile the Church, and murther the members of the same, let vs comforte our selues with this cogitation, the Lord of Hostes can not forsake his tabernacle, which he hath made, but wil by his diuine power and presence defende the same: and withal praie we vnto this Lorde, that he wil not suffer vs to be tempted aboue that we be able to beare.

Moreouer this Church,3. The true church, har­keneth vnto the word of the Lorde. as it is gathered by the word of God: so wil it faithfulie reteine ye same without al corruption. It knoweth how Christ alone is to be harkened vnto in the mi­nisters of the Gospel. And that is it which the Lorde him-selfe doth saie:Iohn. 10, 27 5. My sheepe heare my voice: for theie knowe not the voice of strangers. This is à special note wherebie the Church of Christ is distinguished from other assemblies.

By whiche we are admonished to shunne false-christes, and false-prophetes euen as we would the verie diuel him-selfe: For this alwaie is the scope of Satan, namelie that, despising the voice of the Lorde, we should hearken vnto him. For, as he enuironed our first parents by sophistrie, and deprauing the worde of God: so alwaies he laboureth to en­trap [Page 111] the Church: after the same sorte, and maner. And therfore it standeth vs vpō aboue al to listen-vnto the voice of our sheepheard, despising the voice of strangers, by whom the diuel speaketh. So then when the Papistes doe bid vs to heare them, let vs answer that Christ our shepheard hath commanded to heare his voice onelie, and to content vs there-withal. This voice of our shepheard is comprehended in the writinges both of the Prophetes and A­postles, and that not obscurelie, but plainelie, as touching the ground of our saluation. When the Pope doth bid thee to cal vpon saintes; shunne him as the serpent which by his lie cast our first parentes vnto the death. For it is contrarie to the wordes of our sheepeheard who saith:Matt. 4, 10 Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him onelie shalt thou serue: Againe, Cal vpon me in the daie of trouble, Psal. 50, 15 and so of the rest. For a godlie minde is neuer at quiet vnlesse it heare this voice, and be truelie persuaded, that thus saith the Lorde of hostes.

Againe, this Church, forsomuch as it har­keneth onelie vnto the voice of the Lorde of Host [...]s,4. The true Church obeieth Christe onelie. it cleaueth to him, and obeieth him & none beside. Others folow other masters, some cleaue to worldlie riches and pleasures; manie are carried-awaie with the tempestes of their owne affections, that theie make smal ac­count of the Church of Christ: but the true [Page 112] Church possesseth all the treasures of riches in Christ alone, for which cause it cleaueth-to and obeieth him; it knoweth howe it was saide of their master,Mat. 23, 8. Be not ye caled Rabbi, for one is your doctor, to wit, Christ. To him alone therfore it seeketh, according to the wordes of the Church in the 73. psalme:Psal. 73, 28 As for me, it is good for me to draw neare to God: I haue put my trust in the Lord God, that I maie declare al thy workes. But seeing others that are not in the Church of God, to their certaine condemnation doe folowe other masters, theie do more and more estrange them-selues from God, as in the same Psalme it is saide:Psal. 73, 37 Loe theie that with-drawe themselues from thee shal perish: thou destroiest al them that go a whoring from thee. But what is it to cleaue vnto the Lorde of Hostes? It is by faith to be espoused, and by hope, confession; and obedience according to his worde,To cleaue vnto the Lorde of hostes, what; to be ioined to him. For as by faith we receaue him, as our beloued spouse, and are ioined to him: So by hope, & confession we continue in him as it were depending to a trustie anchor. Whereof we are carried-into his commenda­tion, esteeming of al thinges of no price in respect of the obedience we owe vnto him.

Therefore when the godlie for confession of the Gospel are compelled to change their aboade, and see their substance to be seased-vpon, let them take consolation from hence, & [Page 113] looke not so much vpon the present worlde, as for the euent, the ioieful euent to come, which theie shal find if so be theie abide con­stantlie in the faith and confession; let them thinke howe there shalbe à righteous iudge­mēt, wherin as theie, that cleaue to ye Lord by faith & confession, shal finde the words of the Psalmist true,Psal. 73, 28 saying, As for me it is good for me to drawe neere to God: so such as turne them­selues from God by incredulitie, and renoun­cing of confession, shal crie-out howe theie are most miserable: let them thinke howe confession is necessarie, according to this sai­eng▪ Rom. 10, 10 With the heart man beleeueth vnto righte­ousnes, and with the mouth man confesseth vnto saluation: Finalie, let them thinke, this is an earnest cōmandement of God,1. Co. 10, 14 Flie frō idolatrie.

Besides,5. In the true Church the Lord of hostes doth dwel. for so much as this true Church is the tabernacle of the Lord of Hostes, it hath doubtles the Lorde of hostes dwelling in her. And therefore not without good cause is she tearmed the temple of God in the Scriptures. Hitherto belongeth that of Paule:The Church is the tem­ple of God. Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the spirite of God dwelleth in you? 1. Cor 3. 16. 17. If anie man destroie the temple of God, him shal God destroie. For the tem­ple of God is holie, which ye are. Hence therefore maie be gathered how greate the glorie of the Church is; what puritie is required to be in the same; how religiously it should serue God; [Page 114] and what punishments be prepared for them, who shal prophane this Temple of God.

The glorie of the Church surelie is verie great,The glorie of the Church. in that the heauenlie wisedome, that is, the word of God is committed to her; in that God heareth her praiers; and protecteth her continualie; in that she hath alwaies bin in­uincible, notwithstanding all her afflictions, and troubles; in that she hath bin famous both with prophecies, and miracles; in that she hath excelled with manie heroical virtues; finalie in that she is appointed to be the heire of e­ternal life.

Nowe at the greatenesse of this glo­rie none can sufficientlie wonder. And yet it is more wonderful than al this, that the diuine maiestie, to wit, the Father, the Sonne, & the holie Ghost, doth vouchsafe to elect, and to consecrate the heart of man for their habita­tion, and there to dwel, according to the pro­mise of Christ:Iohn. 14, 23 If anie man loue me, he wil keepe my worde, and my father wil loue him, and we wil come vnto him, and wil dwel with him.

See nowe what à great difference there is betweene the Church of God,Difference betwene the true Church and other assemblies. and other as­semblies. The Church of God, is the Temple of God: but other assemblies are in deede the houses of diuels. As therfore nothing is more delectable, nothing more cleane, nothing bet­ter, nothing more holie than yt is: so there is [Page 115] nothing more abhominable, nothing more fil­thie, nothing worser, nothing more pro­phane than these assemblies are. Not without cause then did Dauid with great admiration breake into these wordes,Psal. 87, 3 Glorious thinges are spoken of thee, O citie of God. The considerati­on of this glorious condition of the Churche should be à good cause to stirre-vp al men to ioine thēselues vnto the Church of God. But, alas, such is the blindnes, such is the foolishnes of mans hart, that verie few are moued with ye glorie of the Church, and manie taken with pleasures, delightes, riches, and promotion, can no whit beholde this glorie.

What puritie is required to be in the Churche,The puritie of the Church. maie appeare in that she is taken-for, and called, The holie Temple of God. For as a Temple made by man, and consecrated to God, should be cleare from idols, and al vn­cleannesse, that men therein maie meete syn­cerelie to serue the Lord, through saith accor­ding to Gods worde, for which cause our Sa­uiour Christ caste the biers and sellèrs out of the Temple of Ierusalem,Mat. 21, 1 [...] 13. saieng, Mine house shalbe caled the house of praier: So euerie Chri­stian, that he maie be an holie Temple of God, must be separated from the prophane Gentiles, & haue no place for idols & vnclea­nes within him, that al the powers both of his mind & bodie maie cōsent trulie, & syncerelie [Page 116] to serue the Lorde God; and finalie that with vnfaigned repentance he maie throwe-down himselfe before the Maiestie of God, and rise-againe through confidence in the gratious promise, & so in the feare of God by mortifi­cation of the flesh, and quickening of the spi­rite goe on forwarde dailie more and more, vntil he attaine vnto the marke he shooteth at. And although none can be cleare from al sinne while he liueth in this world, as aboue al­so I haue touched:How we are holie and pure in this life. yet who so reteineth faith and à good conscience, is iudged pure & holie before God, and that in two respectes.

First by the imputation of the holines of Christ: secondlie by inchoation of obedience. Wher-of it is, that in respect of the vngodlie, & vnpenitent persons, the godlie before God are counted for moste holie, for most pure, and perfect without al spot or wrinckle. For God imputeth not the remnants of sinne vn­to them, but looketh-vpon them as theie are cloathed, and adorned with the righteousnes of his sonne Iesus Christ.

Nowe,The holie seruice of God in the Church. the Church being the holie Tem­ple of God, God is necessarilie to be serued in the same, and that purelie, and holilie. And this seruice is à worke commanded of GOD,Seruice of God, what; done through faith, principalie for the glorie of God. Then that this seruice maie be pure & holie, it is required first of all that the worke [Page 117] of the seruice be holie, that is prescribed by the word of God, and infected with no hu­mane, or diuelish additions. For so the Lorde by the Prophet Ieremie, doth saie: Walke in my commandementes, and not in the commandements of your fathers. And that the workes comman­ded by men are not the seruice of God of thē ­selues, the Prophet Isaiah teacheth when he saith:Isa. 23, 13. In vaine theie worship me, teaching for do­ctrines mens preceptes. Matt. 15, 9. And Paule in plaine wordes condemneth al such traditions of man.1. Cor. 7, 23. Hence therfore let vs conclude à most certain rule.Colos. 2, 20. 21. & No seruice pleaseth God, but what he ordeineth, & commendeth to vs in his word.

Secondlie vnto the pure and holie seruice of God, it is required that the minde and con­science of the worker be holie and pure. For when the minde is vnpure, it is abhomina­ble whatsoeuer a man doth, although to out­ward shewe it seeme to be à right holie worke exacted by the lawe of God; and although there be greate vse therof among men, accor­ding to that of Paule vnto Titus,Ti [...]us. 1, 15. Vnto the pure are al thinges pure, but vnto them that are defiled and vnbeleeuing, is nothing pure, but euen their mindes and consciences are defiled. 16. Theie professe that they know God, but by works theie denie him, & are abominable and disobedient, Howe faith doth purifie the heart. and vnto eue­rie good worke reprobate. And how the minde of man is made pure by faith, it is manifest. For [Page 118] by faith, Act. 15, 9. as witnesseth the Apostle, the heartes be purified, not because faith of it selfe can doe so, but for that by faith the bloud of Christe is applied, by the sprinckling wherof our hearts be cleansed from dead workes. Thirdlie that the seruice of God maie be holie and pure, it is required, that the end of the worke be pure and holie, that is, that without al hypocrisie, with à simple heart thou set the glorie of God before thine eies, that is, that thou do whatso­euer thou doe, onelie because God hath com­manded the same to be done, whō thie minde is, with al thine affection, mind, wil, and life to glorifie. A worke so done, is à pure and holie seruice of God. And although the worke it self be apparent for the most part, & in ye eies of men, verie base: yet it is a spiritual seruice of God: because it is the work not of ye flesh, but of the spirit, before which is proposed the glo­rie of God. And that theie, who shal violate this holie temple of God,Punishmēt of such as defile the Church of God. shal not escape scot-free, this threatning of the Apostle doth de­clare, If anie man doth violate the Temple of God, him wil God destroie. But this Temple is viola­ted by idols, and vncleanes, that is by errone­ous doctrine,1. Cor. 3, 17. superstitious worshippinges,Howe and whereby the church is defiled. schisme, by wickednes and prophanes of life: who so is guiltie of anie one of these vices, doth violate the Temple of God. What then shal we saie of the Pope who ouerwhelmeth [Page 119] the doctrine of the Gospel with ye dreames of Monkes; who bringeth infinite superstitions into the church; who parteth a sunder ye vnitie of the Church by the manifolde orders of Fri­ers; who winketh at the monstrous impuritie of Clergie men by vsing no discipline; & who is an example himselfe to al the worlde of wickednes, and vnholie conuersation?

Furthermore by the name of Tabernacles,6. The true Church in this world is in exile and banish­ment neuer at rest. we are put in mind of the Churches peregri­nation, and wandering from one place vnto a­nother, vntil she come vnto her true countrie. For as tabernacles or tentes of war, be remo­ued hether and thether: so the Churche of GOD in this life hath no sure,Of the ba­nished state of the church read more after­ward, chap. 20. of this 1 part. and quiet a­bode, but often is compelled to change her seate. This pilgrimage, wherebie in deede eue­rie man, as Augustine doth saie, is à pilgrime in this world, doth admonish vs of sin, which is the cause of this peregrination. For, because of sin we are cast with our first parents out of Pa­radise into the land wherein we soiorne. So yt we are remoued from Ierusalem,Ierusalem yt is from the sight and fruition of peace,Babylon. into Babylon, that is into cónfusion, & exile wherin we wander-about far & wide. And although we are al pil­grimes:Sundrie kindes of strangers. yet the condition of al men is not like. For some are quite out of the waie into their coūtrie, & some are in ye readie way. For whoso beleueth not, is neither in his countrie, nor in ye [Page 120] waie there-vnto. And he that soiourneth, and walketh by faith, is not yet in his countrie, but for al yt is in the right waie. This was it which the Apostle saith,Heb 13, 14. We haue not here à continuing citie: but we seeke one to come. As therefore they, who often are enforced to change their seate in iorneieng, must suffer manie troubles, and quietlie put them vp: so the Church of God in this worlde shal neuer be free from trappes, and troubles both of men and diuels, so long as it wandereth in the darke vales of this life.

Therefore we are to walke warilie in this pil­grimage, and to beware of the snares of false doctrine; of prophanes of cōuersation; of won­dering at nouelties; leaste beeing taken with the inticements of this worlde we forget our countrie, and reiect the same in respect of our exile: as manie of them did, who being carri­ed-awaie into the captiuitie of Babylon, refu­sed to returne thence into their natiue coun­trie. In al hardnes and aduersitie let vs com­fort our selues with hope to returne one daie into our countrie againe; and although we are in bodie absent, yet in minde let vs be present in heauen with our capitane; and as Paule ad­monisheth,Phil 3, 21. Let our conuersation be in heauen, from whence also we looke for the Sauiour, euen the Lorde Iesus Christe; finalie let vs beare in mind how ye Church in this pilgrimage is go­uerned by the prouidence of God, who wil see [Page 121] yt no rage either of Satan or of anie limme of his shal vtterlie destroy the same. For as God was alwaies in the tabernacles of his people in the wildernesse, and miraculouslie did foster, and defende them: So Christe, our capitaine wil neuer be from his Church, according as he hath promised,Mat. 28, 20 I am with you vntil the ende of the worlde.

Finalie,7, The true Church fol­loweth her capitaine Iesus Christ. seeing the Church is in à strang cō ­trie, and tendeth home-warde, that is to the heauenlie Ierusalem, it standes her-vppon in this hard pilgrimage to followe her capitaine rightlie, that by his direction she maie at the length happily attaine vnto her desired home, For as the capitaine of the people of God, Moses, conducted the Israeltes out of Egypt through the red sea; and after him Ioshua brought them into the promised lande: So Iesus Christe, and none else, shal bring his Church into the celestial countrie; according as he testifieth of himselfe,Iohn. 14, 6. saying, I am the waie, the trueth, and the life. And albeit Au­gustine doth featelie interprete that saying of Christ, when he saith, He was the waie not er­ring; the trueth not deceiuing; the life not failing; the waie in example; the trueth in promise; the life in rewarde: yet for somuch as this asseue­ration containeth manie good lessons, & com­fortes, I wil expounde the same somewhat more plainelie, & at large. [Page 120] [...] [Page 121] [...]

[Page 122] These three thinges are diligentlie to be distinguished, The waie, truth, life. Whereby first of al generalie is signified, howe Christe alone is the beginning, middle, and consum­mation of our saluation and happinesse: and therefore, that workes neither going before faith, nor conioined with faith, nor yet folow­ing faith, doe merite saluation, and happines. Then particularlie the manner would be ga­thered out of the scriptures, how Christ is the waie; how the truth; and how the life.

Howe therefore is Christ the way?How Christ is the wale by doctrine. He is the way both by doctrine, and by merite, and by example. By doctrine, in teaching vs those thinges which tend vnto our saluation, accor­ding to that of Iohn,Iohn. 1, 18. No man hath seene God at anie time: the onelie begotten sonne of God, which is in the bosome of the father, he hath de­clared him: 1. Cor. 1, 30. and Paul saith, Iesus Christ of God is made vnto vs wisedom. For this eternal sonne of God hath alwaies beene present with his Church, and by his spirit instructed the Pro­phetes touching himselfe as witnesseth Peter.2. Pet. 1, 21. And therefore whoso abideth in the doctrine of Christ, abideth in the waie of saluation: but he that wandereth from the doctrin of Christ, runneth headlong into the way of perdition. So then let our onely care be, to imbrace, and defend the synceritie of the Gospel, setting-a­part al danger either of life, or goods. And let [Page 123] vs know,Mat. 10, 39 yt he was true of his word which said He that loaseth his life for my sake, Luke. 9, 24. shal saue it.

How is Christ the waie by merit?Howe Christ is the waie by merit. Because he alone by the obedience of the crosse hath clensed vs from sinne, and imputeth to vs his obedience whereby he hath fulfilled ye lawe, that we may be coūted righteous before God, as though we our selues had fulfilled the same. And this is it which Paul saith,Rom. 10, 4. Christ is the end of the law for righteousnes vnto euerie one that beleueth, that is, Euerie one that beleueth, hath as much as the law requireth, namelie righte­ousnes performed by Christe, but through grace imputed vnto him; which thing the A­postle at large expresseth by à comparison, where he containeth the summe of his mea­ning in these words,Rom. 5, 19. As by one mans disobedi­ence many became sinners: so by the obedience of one, many are made righteous. And Augustine to the same effect doth saie, Our sinnes he hath made his sinnes, that he might make his righte­ousnes to be ours. Of this merit of Christ they truelie doe participate, who confesse, and be­waile their offences, and by vnfained repen­tance do flie vnto the mercie of God, offered without respect of persons to so many as be­leeue. For the beleeuer is clensed from sin by ye virtue of ye sacrifice of Christ; is endued with Christ his righteousnes; & receaued gratis vn­to euerlasting life, yt is in one word, is iustified. [Page 124] For iustification is nothing else but an absol­uing of the beleeuing man from sinne; an im­puting of the righteousnesse of Christ; and à free accepting vnto euerlasting life for Christ his sake. And whosoeuer shal patch his owne merite with Christs, as either à part, or à cause, or consummation of righteousnesse, is doubt­lesse out of the waie, according vnto that of Paul vnto the Romanes, Being ignorant of the righteousnesse of God, Rom. 10, 3. and going about to stablish their owne righteousnesse, they haue not submit­ted themselues to the righteousnes of God. For Christ is the ende of the lawe for righteousnesse vnto euerie one that beleeueth. 4. Wherefore a­bide we in the way of Christ his merite, least with the vnbeleeuing Iewes, and idolatrous Papistes we vtterlie forgoe righteousnes, and saluation.

Howe is he the waie by example?Christ howe the waie by example, In pro­posing himselfe for à paterne of godlines, ac­cording to that; I haue giuen you an example, that ye shoulde doe, Iohn. 13, 15. euen as I haue done to you. Againe;Io 13, 24. Loue ye one another, as I haue loued you. I am the light of the worlde, Ioh. 15, 12. he that foloweth me, shal not walke in darkenes, Ioh. 8, 12. but shal haue the light of life. Nowe he doeth folowe Christ, who both embraceth his doctrine, and resteth vp­on his merite, and placeth the example of Christ, as à light, before him.

Then by doctrine Christ doeth illumi­nate [Page 125] the minde, that he may shewe the father; by merite he doeth iustifie; and by his exam­ple prescribeth à rule to liue by: so that iustlie he deserueth to be called the onelie waie of saluation, and happines.

Howe is Christ the trueth?Christ he the truth. He is the truth, both in fulfilling the prophecies; and in per­forming promises; and finalie in giuing true libertie and freedome. For firste al the pro­phecies of the prophets, and figures of the olde Testament are fulfilled in him, according vnto that of Iohn:Iohn. 1, 17. The lawe was giuen by Mo­ses, but grace and trueth came by Iesus Christ: that is, what Moses hath shadowed by fi­gures, Christ in trueth hath fulfilled.

Againe he doth constantlie kepe promise. He hath promised to be with his Church, & he giueth an euident token that he is present by his wonderful preseruing ye same amiddes the rage of Satan & his limmes;Mat. 28, 20 He hath pro­mised that the gates of hel shal not ouercome the Church,Mat. 16, 18. which promise he keepeth faith­fullie.

Finalie he is the trueth also, in giuing true libertie.Iohn. 8, 31. Hitherto is that of Iohn, If yee con­tinue in my word [...], 38. ye shal know the trueth, and the truth shal make you free: that is, of the seruants of sinne, he wil make you the free sonnes of God, so that sinne can haue no more power ouer you. And this was it which afterwarde [Page 126] in the same chap. is said,36. If the sonne shal make you free, you shal be free in deed. And the sonne maketh free, when he endueth man with his spirit, according to the saieng, Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is libertie.

Howe is Christ the life?Howe Christ is the life. By regenerating, sanctifieng, and glorifieng. By regenerating, because through his spirit he regenerateth vs into new men.Christ the life by rege­nerating vs For through beleeuing, we by à certaine secret blast, and working of the spi­rit of Christ, are borne the children of God, according to that saieng,Iohn. 1, 12. He gaue power to be the sonnes of God, euen to them that beleue in his name. The greeke word in that place signifieth not so much à power as à preheminence. And therfore Nonnus did aptlie expresseth it [...], that is, à celestial honor or prehe­minence. Howe this new spiritual natiuitie commeth to passe, Christ teacheth, Iohn. 3. The wind bloweth where it listeth, Iohn. 3, 8. and thou hea­rest the sounde thereof, but canst not tel whence it commeth: so is euerie man that is borne of the spirite, that is, As nothing of the wind is per­ceiued, but through the blast and sound: so we be regenerated after an hidden forme whē we beleeue, but that regeneration is perceaued through the power, and working of the holy spirit in the man regenerate. A notable token of this newe regeneration, is Baptisme. Fur­thermore here woulde be considered the cō ­parison [Page 127] betweene the life of nature,Life of na­ture, and grace. and the life of grace, the more to stir vs vp vnto the loue of the life of grace. The life of nature is verie short: but the life of grace is the be­ginning of immortalitie. As an image, hath the shape, and not the substance: So this pre­sent life hath nothing permanent, nothing of continuance. And therefore Paul doeth saie, The fashiō of this world goeth-away; 1. Cor. 7, 3▪ for this pre­sent life hath manie sudden changes: But the life of grace, wherebie we are the sonnes of God, hath the thinges which euermore abide and continue. The present life, is caled à na­tural life: but the life of grace, is à diuine life, as witnesseth the Apostle. The present life is excluded out of Paradise: but the life of grace is entered into the spiritual paradise; where­fore henceforth beware we of trappes, least a­gaine, deceaued of the old serpent, we be ex­cluded out of Paradise.

Againe,Christ the life by san­ctifieng vs. Christ is the life by sanctifieng. For the regenerate more and more dailie by the power of ye death & resurrection of Christ are mortified in the flesh, and quickened in ye spirit.Rom. 61, 3. For so saith ye Apostle, Know ye not, that al we which haue ben baptized in to Iesus Christ, haue beene baptized into his death? We are bu­ried then with him by baptisme into his death, that like as Christ was raised-vp from the dead by the [Page 128] glorie of the father, so wee also shoulde walke in newnes of. Therefore that the fleshe is morti­fied in vs, it is done by the vertue of Christe his death; that the spirite is quickened, it is by the efficacie of Christ his resurrection.

This mortification and this quickening,The [...] of the image of God in man [...]? be partes of sanctification, whereunto the A­postle testifieth we are called. This sanctifi­cation or separation of man from the vn­cleanesse of the gentiles, through the morti­fication of the fleshe; and co [...]iūction of him with God through ye quickening of the spirit, is ye renuing, or repairing of the image of God in man. Wherefore as the image of Caesar in coine, putteth men in minde what is due to Caesar: So this image of God, doeth admo­nish man, what he, bearing this image of God, oweth to God.

Last of al,Christ the life by glori­fieng vs. he is called the life by glorifieng. For by his owne power he shal raise vs vp, & being vp-raised, he wil endue vs with immor­tal glorie. For they are both the benefites of Christ, to wit, both the raising-vp of the dead and the giuing of eternal life, wherein wee shal be conformable to him worlds without end. This likenesse of the Church with Christ which is the coniunction,Perfect fe­ [...]citie, what: and knitting of him with God, is mans perfect felicitie, yea and the ende of man. For if that be mans ende, which maketh him perfect and blessed, so [Page 129] that he shal neither want, nor wish any thing, and is therefore named the ende, because it pertaineth vnto the last, and most perfecte; thē the most perfect state of man in the euer­lasting life, shal be yt conformitie with Christ; wherein man shal abide blessed for euermore. Sith God hath made man for this end, he vn­doutedlie wil haue al men to attaine vnto this end,1. Tim. 2, 4. according to this saieng, God wil that al men shal be saued, and because he wil the end, he wil also the meanes vnto the end: and therefore the Apostle addeth, God wil that al men should come vnto the knowledge of the truth. For without this meane none can come vnto the end. Therefore seeing the ministerie of the Gospel is appointed for this ende, who seeth not howe necessarie, howe diuine, and howe louelie it is! Whoso truelie putteth this ende before his eies, wil not easilie be terrified from the confession of the Gospel by anie threates, and afflictions of Tyrantes.

Let this then suffice to be spoken touching the true Church. Vpon the third verse, God willing, we purpose to entreate, of the triple state of the Church, to wit, vpright, troubled, and exiled. Also of the inward and external notes of the true Church. And vpon the sixte verse we wil discourse of the crosse, and of the comforte of the Church vnder the crosse.

CHAP. 13.
The cause whie the Church is so be­loued, and amiable to the Lord of hostes.

IT foloweth nowe that we shewe, which I proponed in the thirde place,Aboue cap. 3. Pag. 9. whie the Church is so louelie, and amiable in the eies of the Lord of hostes.

The cause of this loue is not founded in vs, but in the Lorde of hostes himselfe, as Paule writing vnto the Ephesians,Ma [...]. 3, 17. doth saie, He hath loued vs in the beloued, and God the fa­ther gaue this voice from heauen, This is my beloued sonne in whome I am wel pleased. Euerie one therefore who is in Christ through faith is beloued of God, and become amiable, in respect of the goodnes, that is the righteous­nes, and bewtie, that is the holines of Christ, communicated vppon him. For these two thinges, to wit, goodnes and bewtie do allure the mindes of men to loue them who are en­dued therewithal. The Church then is loued of God in the beloued, and that by reason of the societie which ye Church hath with Christ. Now for the better vnderstanding what kind of societie it hath with Christ,Societie with Christ. for which the Church becommeth so amiable to the Lord [Page 131] of hostes, certaine degrees of fellowshippe which men haue with Christ both God and man, would be considered.

Generalie men haue a double societie with Christ, the one whereof is not health­ful,Vnhealthful societie of how manie, sortes. the other healthful. Of the vnhealthful societie, there is à threefolde sort. The first is of nature onelie, that meane whereby men are conioned with Christ by the communion 1 onelie of nature, as are al nations which know not Christ, the infidel Iewes and Turkes. The seconde is of nature, and of outwarde 2 professiō onelie: when as besid natural societie outward professiō of Christian religion, is ioi­ned; such is the felowship of ye vngodlie, who 3 faine thēselues for Christians. The third is of nature, of outwarde profession, and of the sa­craments onlie. This societie is of hypocrites, who beare à color of holines without à liue­lie confidence in Christ.

The healthful fellowship with Christ is that,Healthful societie of how manie sortes. whereby men are associated to Christ, through participation of the spirite, and ap­plication of the benefites of the Mediator; and this also is of three sortes. The first is of na­ture,1 and of inward coniunction onelie. Here­by are they conioined to Christ who beleeue in Christ, but yet are not knowne, as are ma­nie both in Turkie, and vnder the Pope. The seconde is of nature, of inwarde coniunction,2 [Page 132] and of outwarde profession onelie: such was that of Cornelius before he was baptized. 3 The thirde is of nature, of inward coniuncti­on, of outwarde profession, and of the sacra­mentes also: And this is the most perfect, such is the communion of the godlie in wel refor­med Churches.

This societie of the Church with Christ maketh her to be most louelie in the sight of the Lorde of Hostes. And therefore Dauid not without cause brake into this admiration, O Lorde of hostes, how amiable are thy Taberna­cles! Num. 24, 6. And Balaam, Num. 24. How goodlie are thy tentes, ô Iaakob, and thy habitations, ô Israell As the vallies, 6. are they stretched-foorth, as gar­dens by the riuers side, as the aloe trees which the Lorde hath planted. For when the Prophet with corporal eies did behold those outward tabernacles, by à prophetical spirite he was carried into the contemplation of the beautie of the Church of Christ, which in deede is goodlie and amiable to God, in respect of her coniunction with Christ, in whome all which beleeue, are both righteous, and holie, and beloued of God, and abound with al spi­ritual giftes, looking for that blessed inheri­tance, whereof they haue for à most certaine earnest penie, the holie spirit.

Seeing then this fellowship with God in Christ, and through Christ, is the ende of [Page 133] good thinges, yea and mans soueraigne felici­tie, it is meete that we haue the same in hie price and estimation; yea, and preferre it a­fore al worldlie things be they neuer so deere, and precious. Here therefore verie great heed woulde be had, that we neither through our owne default, nor through others, doe forgoe the same. Through our owne default we leese it, when we waxe slothful, either in reading, or in meditating of the worde; or in the ex­ercises of godlines, as in praier, thankes-gi­uing, frequenting the sacramentes, and so­forth. For thereby the spirite of faith is quē ­ched, and man ful shamefulie falleth from this communion.

Through the fault of others wee leese the same, when either through sophistrie, or hy­pocrisie, or tyrannie, or frowardnes of the people, or by offences vanquished we cast­awaie the confession, and breake the bande of this heauenlie societie; and chuse to folow ra­ther manie that are wicked, than à fewe good. For manie there haue beene, which for not defending this fellowship with such à zeale, as they were bound to doe, haue vtterlie fal­len from the same, and neuer returned-againe therevnto: such were Cain, Iudas, and Saul.

Let it be had in minde how cursed the so­cietie of men with the diuel, is, for whom are appointed euerlasting punishments.

[Page 134] Hereby nowe it maie be gathered, whie Dauid so longed for the tabernacles of the Lorde of hostes, as in the second verse it fo­loweth.

CHAP. 14.
1 A description of the loue of the Church to­warde God; 2. The sundrie signifi­cations of the h [...]rt, and fleshe.

Verse 2.‘MY SOVLE LONGETH, YEA AND FAINTETH FOR THE COVRTES OF THE LORD; MINE HEART, AND MY FLESH HAVE REIOICED IN THE LIVING GOD.’

IN this verse is shewed, howe the Church shoulde be affectioned towardes God. For Dauid by his example here teacheth, howe greatlie wee are to couet societie with the Church of God; that with true and spiritual ioie, we maie reioice in the liuing God.

Beholde here a most goodlie order of the cause, the effect, and ende. The first verse set­teth before our eies the soueraigne happines, namelie fellowship with God himselfe; this seconde commendeth vnto vs the desire of ye chiefest felicitie in a goodlie example. For by nature we are so framed, that vnto the good [Page 135] which we knowe we are caried with ful de­sire, & couet after felicitie withal our strength that we maie enioie the same; which enioieng is the ende, both of the knowledge, and of the desire. In the 119. Psalme, the Psalmist doeth often shewe this desire,Psa. 119, 14 when he saith: I haue had as great delight in the waie of thie te­stimonies, 24. as in al riches. Againe, Thie testi­monies are my delight, Againe, My soule is euen worne awaie by reason of the desire I haue to thy precepts continualie. 123. And againe, Mine eies haue failed in waiting for thy saluation, and for thy iust promise. Which thing the 42. Psalme doeth verie liuelie expresse in these wordes, As the Hart braieth for the riuers of waters: Psal. 42, 1. so panteth my soule after thee, ô God. My soule thir­steth for God, euen for the liuing God. 2. When shal I come, and appeare before the presence of God? Therefore as the Hart, in hunting flieth being pursued of dogs, & wearied by a long course and drines, with al gredines desireth the fresh waters: so the minde of Dauid, being now in exile, ful earnestlie longed-for the fellowship of the Church of God, wherein ye word soun­deth,Word of god à liuing fountaine. and praiers with sacrifices are made. For that liuing fountaine is the word of God, frō whence true life, and liuelie consolations are drawen. From the cisternes of man, neither life, nor substantial comfort can be fetcht.

Wherefore let vs diligentile note the order. [Page 136] For first knowledge goeth-before. For, as it is rightlie saide, That which is vnknowne is vn­desired. Secondarilie, of knowledge ariseth à lust not of the flesh, but of the spirite, or frō faith. Thirdlie, this lust by due meanes is car­ried to attaine, to possesse, keepe, and to en­ioie the end.

Here let euerie one examine his owne hart, as by à most infallible rule, and leuel, whether he burne with such à desire, as here is descri­bed, or no; and if he perceaue that he doeth not burne with this holy desire of the Church which is the chiefest happines, then some in­ward light is wanting, that is, he doeth not rightlie vnderstand how amiable this fellow­ship of the sainctes is in God, and among thē selues. Therefore let him seeke light, where­withal his minde maie be inlightened, & the desire of his heart stirred-vp, and the darke­nes of ignorance, and malice, expelled-awaie. But if he perceaue this burning desire, then let him thinke how he is moued with the holie Ghost; and let him inflame this desire within himselfe by meditating of the worde, and by earnest praier, that he alone maie be desired, who alone can fulfil the desire, that so al the grace, which we haue receaued, maie be sent­back vnto the spring of the right fountaine. For man naturalie doth desire, both to attaine the good thing which he longeth for, and ha­ning [Page 137] attained to retaine and keepe the same.

But the true, and sound felicitie of man is God himselfe. Therefore man desireth God: who because he is infinite, the desire of him also is infinite, and cannot be satisfied but with him onlie: and hauing him it staieth and ceas­seth. This desire, although it should be in eue­rie man: yet in them onlie it is pure, and holie, whose heartes are inlightened, and whose af­fections are purged by the light of God. To this holie desire, and longing both à certaine care of the spirite, that we maie attaine the thing which we couet-after; and à feare, wari­nes, and courage of mind against troubles that would hurt, is annexed.

But what meaneth he in saying, He longeth, yea and fainteth? This fainting is not of one that is wearied, but one that contendeth; nor of one tired, but of one that burneth. For this holie desire cā neuer be so satisfied in this life, but it wil thirst yet more after ye liuing foun­taine.Isai. 12, 2. For continualie this wil be the voice of the Church. Beholde God is my saluation, I wil trust, 3. and wil not feare, for the Lorde God is my strength and song; He also is become my saluation. Therefore with ioie shal ye draw waters out of the wels of saluation. 4. And ye shal saie in that daie, Praise the Lorde; and cal-vpon his name. And therefore the Psalmist addeth:

[Page 138] MINE HEART AND MY FLESH HAVE REIOICED IN THE LIVING GOD.

WHat?Hart of man Gen. 8, 21. Is not the heart of man euil, euen from his youth? Is not the flesh defiled? Surelie the heart of man before regeneration is peruerse, stonie and harde, that is disobedi­ent, and wil not giue place to the wordes of God. The flesh in like sorte before regenerati­on, is the store-house of al manner wicked af­fections, wherebie it ministreth instrumentes to the committing of al impietie and wicked­nes whatsoeuer. How true this is which I saie, I wil shewe by two places of the Scripture: the former whereof shal teach vs what in tru­eth we are without the grace of regeneration; the latter shal assigne the causes of the same. What we are, Paul out of the Psalme telleth vs,Rom. 3, 10. 11. when he saith: There is none righteous, no not one. There is none that vnderstandeth; there is none that seeketh God. Theie haue al gone-out of the waie; 12. theie haue bin made altogether vnpro­fitable: there is none that doth good. The reason whie we are such, is expressed, where the A­postle vseth these wordes, I testifie in the Lord, that ye henceforth walke not as other Gentiles walke, Ephe. 4, 17. in vanitie of their minde, hauing their cogi­tation darkened, 18. and being strangers from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, be­cause of the hardnes of the heart. By the hardnes of ye heart he vnderstandeth an extreme num­mednes, [Page 139] wherebie men are not touched with the sense of their wickednes, nor couet after à better state. But after regeneration when by ye hand of God the heart is reformed, yt is, made newe by God himselfe, and purified through faith,Pro. 51, 10. according to that of Dauid, Create in me à cleane heart, O God, and renue à right spirite within me, then becommeth it fleshie, that is, tender, and obedient, and hearkeneth to the lawes of God; then it is the place of newe af­fections, and chiefelie of the feare of God, of gladnes, and reioicing. And therefore in à cer­taine Psalme it is said,Psal. 2, 11. Serue the Lorde in feare, and reioice in trembling. This feare is a childish feare, holie, and pure: and the reioicing is of the spirite. When after this maner the heart is enlarged, and reioiceth, this enlargement, and reioicing is shed ouer the whole bodie. For se­ing the hart is the beginning of life in man, frō which diuers veines like conduct pipes do cō ­ueie an hot, and feruent spirit ouer the whole bodie; maruel it is not, being enlarged, as it fal­leth out in à ioie to imbrace the obiect, if the more subtil vital spirites are spread ouer the whole bodie, whereof tokens of gladnes doe appeare in the bodie. For, as the hearte wrong together, and the vital spirite kept-in, as when we are sad it commeth to passe, the rest of the bodie, is vnquiet, whereof procee­ded yt saying,Psal. 6, 3. 4. My soule is troubled, al my bones are greeued: So the heart being stretched-out, [Page 140] and the spirites spread-abroade, the whole bo­die is comforted. And therefore Salomon do­eth saie,Pro. 17, 72. A ioieful heart causeth good health, but à sorowful minde drieth the bones.

Furthermore, for so much as the wordes, Hart, & Flesh are diuerslie taken in the Scrip­tures, I wil here set downe the sundrie signi­fications which theie haue. For, when words haue manie significations, that signification is euermore to be chosen, which agreeth best to the sense and circumstance of the place.

The heart therefore in the Scripture is ta­ken after three waies.Diuers sig­nifications of the heart First, and properlie it is taken for one, and the most noble intral in man, as that which is the beginning and foun­taine of life, and the first that receaueth life, & dieth last. For in the heart is the vital power, as saith Augustine, which by drawing-vp, and giuing aër to coole the heate of the heart, brin­geth life and welfare to the whole bodie. For through good aër, it driueth the purified blood ouer ye whole bodie by the pulses, caled arteries. Secondlie it is vnderstode metony­micalie. For, seeing the heart is the recepta­cle of the minde, it is taken for the minde it selfe, and for the properties of the same, as for reason, wil, knowledge, wit, counsel, wisdome. Wherefore theie are caled Homines cordati, Harted men that is, harted men, which haue wit, wisdome, and vnderstanding. Thirdlie it is taken meta­phoricalie, [Page 141] both for the middle of some thing; and also for that which is hid, & secrete. Whe­ther then you respecte the substance of the heart; or the minde resting in the same; or the natural properties which it hath, God is the author thereof, who vndoubtedlie made no­thing which euil was, beeing himselfe moste perfectlie good. But the wandering motions in the heart are wicked who proceede not frō God, but from ye voluntarie reuolting of man from God. The moste wise God, so created man, yt he had both power to seeke for things necessarie; and virtue to desire them; and ha­bilitie to defende his state. Whereof come those three faculties in man, to wit, the reaso­nable, concupiscible, and irascible, the which of thēselues & in respect of their creation are good,How the hart of man becommeth froward & wicked. but by an accidental sicknes are become naught and euil. Whence it is that the heart of man is oftentimes in the Scriptures saide to be froward, and wicked. Which thing commeth to passe after this wise. First, when it is infe­cted with false & erroneous doctrine; second­lie, when it is voide of the knowledge of the truth; thirdlie, when it is troubled with vn­cleane affections; fourthlie, when it assenteth to sin, and foloweth the desires of the fleshe, it becommeth vnpure, and diseased as it were with moste grieuous sickenesse; or to speake more brieflie, The heart becommeth peruerse, [Page 142] & euil, whē it is either infected with ye plague of erroneous opinions; or borne-waie by the stormes of euil affections against reason, and righteousnes, wherof infinite euils, & diseases breake-forth. But, when by the hand of God the heart is reformed, then is it deliuered from these noisome diseases, and made new, not by the alteration of the substance, but of the qua­litie or habite of the same, wherebie it becom­meth pure and good. Which then cōmeth to passe when ye word of God is harkened-vnto; and faith fro the worde is conceaued through the operation of the holie Spirit, which wor­keth in the word. For by faith the heartes are purified. Wherof it is that we resist affections when theie doe arise, and proue better dailie more and more, so that our onlie desire is, that God maie like and loue vs. Such an heart Da­uid requested of God,Psal. 51, 10. when he saide, Create in me à cleane heart, and renue à right spirite within me. Such an heart Ieremiah exacted when he saith,Iere. 4, 4. Breake vp your fallowe ground, and sowe not among thornes: be circumcised to the Lord, & take awaie the fore-skins of your heartes, that is, be ye renued,Ephes. 4, 22. 24. and become a new creature, & casting awaie ye old man, put-on the new man, which after God is created in righteousnes, and true holines. He therfore termeth the hart fallowe ground, & the field yt is capable of Gods word being neither stonie, nor dirtie, nor thornie, yt [Page 143] is not hindred with the thoughtes & cares of this world, frō being à meete place for the ce­lestial seede. Such an hart the Prophet Ezekiel caleth both one,Ezek. 11, 19 & also à fleshie hart, in these words: And I wil giue them one hart, & I wil put à new spirite within their bowels: & I wil take the stonie hart out of their bodies, & I wil giue them an hart of flesh. Here he caleth that one hart, which cleaueth vnto God alone, & serueth not God & riches, or idols to, or the cares of this world: for it halteth not on both sides. As therefore through the corruption of our nature we haue à stonie, yt is an vngodlie, & hardened hart a­gainst the word of God, which wil not suffer anie reprehension, no more than the adamant stone wil yeeld to the striker, & this was figu­red by Moses tables of stone: So à fleshie hart is pliant, obedient, and beleeueth, wherin the word of God is ingrauen, & abideth, so yt the onlie care which it hath is to obeie the wil of God. And hereof theie are said to be with­out heart, who are voide of vnderstanding, & wisdome, and obedience, & vpon the head do folowe the desires of the flesh. So that Dauid, when he saith his Hart doth reioice in the liuing God, vnderstandeth the new hart, created tho­rough the grace of God in the newe creation.

Furthermore that our heart deliuered thus from these pestilent diseases, & renued, maie not run againe into those infections, it should [Page 144] euermore be occupied in these three thinges,Meditation what; to wit, In Meditation, which is, à painefull searching-out of an hidden truth; In contem­plation,Contempla­tion, what; Psal. 34, 8. A virtuous life, what; which is, à ioieful wondering at the manifest truth, hence saith the Psalmist, Taste ye, and see howe gratious the Lorde is; and in li­uing virtuouslie, that is religiouslie towardes God, purelie in minde and bodie, iustlie and louinglie towardes the world, and painefulie in discharging the office & calling whiche it hath.

In like sorte the worde Fleshe is in holie Scripture diuerslie vnderstoode.Flesh how taken in the Scripture. For somtime properlie and naturalie it signifieth, the earth­lie substance, which signification is common­lie knowen,1. Cor. 15, 39 as There is one flesh of men, and an­other flesh of beasts, and other of fishes, and another of birdes. Secondlie by the figure Synecdo­che it signifieth euery liuing creature; as when it is saide,Gen. 61, 13. Al flesh was in the arch of Noah, that is, liuing creatures of euerie kinde. Hence, namelie by à Synecdoche, it is also taken ma­nie-times for man. Thirdlie, by the figure Me­tonymie it signifieth the accidentarie qualitie of man after the fal of our first parents, name­lie for whatsoeuer is in man without ye grace of regeneration,Iohn. 3, 6. as when it is saide, That which is borne of the flesh, is flesh: Againe, Flesh & bloud shal not inherite the kingdome of God. 1. Cor. 15, 50 In which places the worde flesh doth signifie the cor­ruption [Page 145] of nature cleauing to ye flesh through the contagion of original sinne. Fourthlie, it is taken for the outward shewe or appearance of thinges,Iohn. 8, 15. as when it was saide, Ye iudge after the flesh; and as when Paul said, That I now liue in the flesh, Gal. 3, [...]0. I liue by the faith in the sonne of God.

Nowe the circumstance in the Psalme re­quireth the firste and proper signification. Mine heart, that is mine whole minde regene­rated by the Spirite of God, and my flesh, that is my bodie haue reioiced in the liuing God.

The adiectiue Liuing hath à singular force and Emphasis. For therebie the true God is discerned both from the idols of the Gentiles, who neither liue, nor can giue life and saluati­on: and also from al [...] thinges of this worlde; which are vncertaine, as the fauour of men. Therfore in the 146. Psalme it is written. Put not your trust in Princes, Psal. 146, 3▪ nor in the sonnes of man, for there is none helpe in them. 4. His breath depar­teth, 5. and he returneth to the earth: then his thoughtes doe perish. Blessed is he that hath the God of Iaakob for his helpe, whose hope is the Lord his God. Here he setteth ye God of Iaakob, who alwaies liueth, against men, who both maie die, and change their mindes, so that who put­teth his trust in them, buildeth vpon à totte­ring foundation. But God, for somuch as he li­ueth for euer, & changeth at no time, can not deceaue: and therfore to reioice in him, it is the [Page 146] surest thing. And Paul in his 1. epistle vnto Timothie chargeth rich men, That theie trust not in vncertaine riches, 1. Tim. 6, 17 but in the liuing God. Where Paul in yt place also opposeth ye liuing God against transitorie riches. To conclude, God who liueth euerlastinglie is put against al thinges created. In him therfore who so ho­peth, & doth reioice, shal not be confounded.

Then by the example of Dauid, let vs both by reading, meditation, contemplation, praier, and other exercises of godlines, stirre-vp our­selues, yt with Dauid we maie truelie perceaue this spiritual gladnes both in our minde, & in our heart, and let vs not desist from praier, vn­til we feele this spiritual exultation within vs. Dauid being in banishment is derided of his e­nimies, and suffereth punishment for his sins: yet he vnder this sense of Gods displeasure ceasseth not praieng vntil he finde some taste of this spiritual ioie, wherewithal he might comfort himselfe in his troubles. Iob in his af­fliction being both contēned of his own wife, & laughed to scorne of his friends, filled with this ioie doth comfort himselfe, and therefore he burst into these wordes, I am sure that my Redeemer liueth. Iob. 19, 25. This comfort of the Spirite haue the holie martyrs of God in al ages op­posed against outward paines. By whose exā ­ples let vs also learne to feele in our selues the ioie of the spirite abiding in vs. For as Ber­nard [Page 147] trulie doth saie: The vital motions do proue that the mind abideth in the bodie: that the spiritè abideth in the soule, the spiritual life doth proue. A special part of this spiritual life is to feele the Spiritual comfort in the liuing God through Iesus Christ, the true life of the Church.

CHAP. 15.
1. Where the true Church may be found; 2. The markes of the same; 3. And the triple state thereof in this life.

The thirde verse.‘FOR THE SPAROVVE HATH FOVNDE AN HOVSE; AND THE SVVALOVV à NEST FOR HER SELFE, WHERE SHE MAIE LAIE HER YONG ONES; EVEN THINE ALTARS, Ô LORD OF HOSTES, MY KING, AND MY GOD.’

IN these wordes is declared where the true Church maie be sought; what be the markes; & what the confession of the same. The sense of this verse is therefore somewhat the more obscure, because ye particles of the similitude or comparison are omitted, which is an vsual thing among ye Hebrues. Thus thē let vs fullie make the cōparison. As the Sparow, the Swal­low, and other birdes (for he hath put the spe­cial for the general) doe build them certaine [Page 148] nestes wherein theie keepe, foster and feede their yong: So thou, O Lorde of hostes, hast appointed thine altars for nestes as it were, wherein by thy word, spirite, sacramentes, & discipline, thou engenderest, nourishest, fee­dest, and defendest thy yong ones, which are the godlie. So that by this comparison is sig­nified, not the affection onelie of the Lorde of Hostes toward the Church, which affection Christ (Matth. 23.) applieth to himselfe, when he saith:Mat. 23, 37 Howe often would I haue gathered thie children together, as the Hen gathereth her chic­kens, & ye would not! But yt euerie one also, who tendereth his own saluation, shold ioine him self to the nestes of God, namelie to the mee­tings of the godlie, where ye publike ministe­rie is.Markes of the true Church. For the altars, by the figure Synecdoche, do signifie ye publike ministerie of ye church; the which is a most certaine note of the visi­ble Church. Dauid then doth shewe how that congregation is the true Church, wherein are teachers and learners of the word of God; & wherein not onelie the ceremonies appointed of God are in vse; but also God according to his word is worshipped; and publique confes­sion of the faith is made. For these words, My King & my God, are the voice of confidence & confession. Therefore wheresoeuer these things are, there without al doubt is the true Church, and the fellowship of Saintes.

[Page 149] But,Triple state of the Church. least anie should erre in this place, it is to be noted that the state of the Church in this life, is three-folde, either an vpright; or à trou­bled; or a banished state. The vpright state of the Church consisteth of due order; of lawful power; & of authoritie. The order is two-fold, namelie either of persons, or of actions. The former is yt which in this place we make the first part of the vpright state of ye church: the latter belōgeth vnto power & authorite. I wil speake therefore now of the order of persons in the kingdome of Christ, which is ye church: which order the nigher it commeth vnto the forme of the primitiue Church, the better & more perfect it is; and the more it swarueth from that ancient simplicitie, the worser, and more hurtful it is.

CHAP. 16.
1. Christ is the supreme gouernour in the Church; 2. The diuersitie of persons in the Church of CHRIST.

FIrst therefore by due order in this spiritual Empire and kingdome of Christe,Christe the supreme head, and ruler of the Church. The Church what; there is one chiefe Monarch, euen Iesus Christ, who by his word and Spirite ruleth the kingdome receaued from the Father. The kingdome of this Monarch is the Church, that is the com­panie [Page 150] of al which beleue through the vniuer­sal world, who although theie be far & wide dispersed; yet in most goodlie proportiō theie do cleaue together, that theie maie make one house of God, and one bodie knit and compa­cted together by the Spirite of Christ, by mu­tual charitie, by communicating of gifts and duties, by vsing the sacraments, & by the con­fessing & worshipping of one God. Wherbie there is such à sweete concent in this bodie, that each are touched both with the prosperi­tie,Two sortes of men in the Church. and aduersitie of others. Moreouer, seeing this congregation is gouerned by the word of God, there be two sorts of men in the same, to wit teachers of ye word, & learners. Whē these mutualie like parents & childrē, do reuerence & loue each other, then is ye Church at à good staie. For so theie do both take heed of corrup­ting the word; & mutual good wil wil not a­lowe of schismes.Diuers kinds of mi­nisters in the Church. But among the ministers of the word there hath bin alwaie, & is great di­uersitie, according to the difference of gifts & of calings. For Christ ascending into heauen, gaue some to be Apostles, State of the ministerie in the pri­mitiue Church. & some Prophetes, & some Euangelistes, and some Pastours, and Tea­chers, who although theie were of equal pow­er, as touching spiritual iurisdiction: yet dif­fered theie verie much in honour and degree of office.Ephe. 4, 11. Paule in honour, and in order sur­passed Timothie, and Titus: Timothie in [Page 151] degree and order excelled the other elders of the Church at Ephesus:Acts. 20, 28. al which Paul in the Acts caleth Bishops, or Ouerseers. This preeminēce was verie behoueful for ye church. For it is impossible yt anie thing should be wel done, where al desire to be of equal honor, & degree.

The Churche that folowed the Apostles time,State of the clergie after the Apostles the Gospel now being dispersed ouer à great parte of the world, and Churches being established,Office of Patriarches did appoint as best serued for the profit of the same, an order of ministers, & or­dained Patriarches, whose office was to haue à care, yt Bishops of euerie Dioces were chosen rightlie and ordeined; that euerie Bishop did his dutie as he ought to do; and yt each Bishops clergie, and flock, were obedient to their Dio­ceser in al thinges that were godlie. Moreouer it ordained Chorbishops, whom Iustine caleth Proestotaes, which were Presidents. Againe it ordained pastors,Popes vsurpers of au­toritie in the Church of Christ. & teachers.

And this was the ordinance of the purer Church, which the reformed Churches for ye greater part at this daie, doe reuoke, as far as it is requisite for them, shaking of the yoke of the Popes, who from ye time of the Emperour Phocas haue vsurped authoritie, & gouerne­ment ouer the Church of God contrarie both to the commandement of Christ, and exam­ples of the Apostles; which thing some of [Page 152] the holie Fathers with the Apostle Paule, did testifie should be the proper note of Anti­christ. For since that time al Popes haue borne one & the same person, as theie, who couered with one and the same visour vnder the name of Christ, do endeuour vtterlie to abolish the Gospel of Christ.

CHAP. 17.
1. What power the Church hath; 2. The kindes thereof; 3. Of the keies of heauen; 4. And of the discipline of the Church.

THe power which we made the second part of the vpright state of the Church, is an authoritie giuen to the Church by Christ,Porwer of the Church what; wherebie it is ruled according both to the worde of God, and to profitable and godlie constitutions of virtuous gouernours. For this power is of those thinges which are appoin­ted for the building of the whole bodie of the Church. The which, as it is of Christe: so it must depend vpon the worde of Christe, and according to his worde be exercised for the welfare, and edification of the whole Church. And therefore saith Paul,2. Cor. 10, 8. Authoritie is giuen vs not for your destruction.

This power is of two sortes,Ordinarie power of the Church. to wit, either ordinarie, or iuridical. The ordained power [Page 153] is that which hath à certaine rule to worke by; which the ministers of the Gospel in the vp­right state of the Church doe folow, and re­quire neither consultation nor the iudgement of the ecclesiastical senate, but doe gouerne the Church according to the rule prescribed. By this power the Preachers doe receiue such into the Church as are conuerted vnto the Gospel, and sweare obeiesance to the king & Monarch Christ, according to this commaun­dement,Mar. 16, 15. 16. Goe ye into al the worlde, and preach the Gospel vnto euerie creature. He that shal be­leeue and be baptized shal be saued: but he that wil not beleeue shal be condemned. Hitherto al­so belongeth that of our Lorde vnto Peter:Matr. 16, 19. I wil giue vnto thee the keyes of the kingdome of heauen, and whatsoeuer thou shalt binde vppon earth, shal be bounde in heauen; and whatsoeuer thou shalt loase on earth, shal be loased in heauen.

But what are these keies?Keies of heauen, what. These keies of the kingdome of heauen without controuer­sie are that whereby the kingdome of heauen is either opened or shutt. And that by the preaching of the Gospel the kingdome of heauen is both opened and shut, al the godlie doe confesse, which giue credite to the words of Christe,Matt. 28, 18 who in the laste of Matthewe doeth saie, Al power is giuen vnto me in heauen, and in earth, Goe therefore, and teach al nations. And in the 20. of Iohn:Ioh. 20, 21. As my father sent me, [Page 154] so sende I you. 22. And when he had saide that, hee breathed on them, one said vnto thē, Receaue the holie Ghost. 23. Whosoeuers sinnes yee remit, they are remitted vnto them; and whosoeuers sinnes ye re­taine, they are retained.

How do they open and shut?Howe the kingdome of heauen is opened or shut. By remitting and by retaining of sinnes. Howe doe they remit, and retaine sinnes? By preaching repen­tance, and remission of sinnes in the name of Christ. Therefore the ministers of the Gos­pel as much as in them is, doe open the kingdome of heauen, and remit sinnes in his name who sendeth them in message, when they preach the Gospel. Nowe if the auditors doe beleeue the Gospel, the kingdome of hea­uen is opened vnto them, and their sinnes be forgiuen, not by the ministers, but of the Lord himselfe, in whose name the ministers doe pronounce remission of sinnes. But if the au­ditors doe refuse to beleeue, the ministers be saide to shut the kingdome of heauen, and to retaine sinnes, and that for the euents sake, not willing lie: for they would ful gladlie haue al their auditors to beleeue the Gospel, and be saued.

This power of Christ committed to the ministers of the Gospel, is verie aptlie signifi­ed by keies. For as keies are deliuered to stew­ardes appointed in families, that they maie serue the Lord, open and shut, not after their [Page 155] owne minde, but according to the pleasure of their master: So to the ministers of the gos­pel power is giuen to open and to shut the kingdome of heauen, according to the com­mandement and precept of Christ the house­holder. For they are stewardes, not the good­men of the house; and seruantes, not Lordes. And therefore they are to gouerne al thinges according to the prescription of their Lorde. For this cause Paul doeth name the ministers of the Gospel,1. Cor. 4, 1. 2. Disposers of the secrets of God: in whome this onelie thing is required, That they be found faithful.

To conclude, the summe of al is this: The keies of the Church are the word, and faith. For as the preaching of the word of God con­cerning ye attaining remission of sins through Christ is one keie to open, & to shut the king­dome of God, (which keie hath à double vse. One is, of one nature, which is to open the kingdome of heauen: the other is, through the default of the hearers, to shut the kingdō of heauen. And therefore Christ himselfe is to some the sauor of death vnto death, and to o­thers the sauor of life vnto life. But, as he is the sauor of life of his owne nature: so is he the sa­uor of death through the wickednes of men that wil not credite the Gospel. So in that ve­rie deede it is but one keie, but it hath à double vse.) So whoso beleeueth through the wor­king [Page 156] of the holie spirite he adioineth faith to the Gospel, which is as it were another keie of the kingdome of heauen. By these two keies the kingdome of heauen is shut vp; and par­don of sinnes obteined.

Furthermore, as Christ, Peter, Philip, Iohn Paul, and the other Apostles, doe applie this keie sometime to manie together, and some­time to one by himselfe: So godlie ministers of the worde both publiquelie, and priuatelie maie vse this auctoritie of opening and shut­ting the kingdome of God, that is of binding and loasing sinnes.What it is to binde. For as this binding, is an adiudging of that man who beleeueth not the Gospel,What is meant by loasing. but serueth sinne, and Sathan, vnto death and damnation, vnlesse he repent: So loasing is à setting of him free, who belee­ueth the gospel, from the woeful bondage of sinne, and the diuel, and à giuing of the most desired libertie in Iesus Christ; that being now set-free from death and perdition he maie serue God by righteousnes for euermore.

Hereby appeareth, both the excellencie of this power; and also howe it is not tied vn­to men, as the Pope thinketh, but to the mi­nisterie of the worde; and that ordinarie regi­ment is subiect to this power, as farfoorth as the Church is guided by doctrine, sacraments, ceremonies,Iuridical power of the Church. and discipline.

The iuridical power, although it depen­deth [Page 157] cheifelie vppon the power of the keis: yet, because it requireth deliberation and con­sultation in respect of diuerse circumstances falling out manie times, which cannot be cō ­prehended in general rules, I distinguish it from the former power, which I called ordi­narie. The iuridical power consisteth in three thinges, to wit, in alowing sound doctrine; in reiecting false opinions; and in exercising ecclesiastical discipline.

That the catholike Church,1. The church hath power to a­lowe, and to establish true religion and euerie mē ­ber of the same haue power to know, and to alowe religion, it is manifest. For both Christ inuiteth al men vnto himself, that they maie learne of men; and the Apostle send-foorth to teach; and God earnestlie requireth the knowledge of his worde, without which no saluation can be attained. Therefore wicked wretches are the Papistes, who keepe-awaie the laie people, as they are called, from the reading of good bookes, and forbid the ho­lie scriptures to be imprinted and reade in à vulgar speech. whereby doubtles they doe shewe themselues to be the cruel enimies of mans saluation; whome those wordes of our Sauiour should terrifie, me thinkes: Wo be to you interpreters of the lawe: Luk. 11, 52. for ye haue taken-a­waie the keie of knowledge: yee entred not in your selues, and them that came-in yee forbad. This checke belongeth vnto the Pharisies in al a­ges, [Page 158] who take to themselues the auctoritie of teaching, but in the meanetime by corrupting true doctrine, and that of meere malice and diuelish hatred, they stop-vp the readie waie vnto Christ.

An other part of the iurisdiction of the Church,2. The Church hath power to forbid false do­ctrine. is à power to improue, and to reiect false and erroneous doctrine, as the inuention of diuels. Therefore saith Christ, Beware of false Prophetes; Matt. 7, 15. And, Take heede to your selues of the leauen of the Pharisies; Luke. 12, 1. And Paul saith, If a­nie man preach an other Gospel, Gal. 1, 8. 9. let him be accur­sed. Neither, as they thinke, doth it make for the Papistes, that our Lorde saith, The scribes and the Pharisies doe sit in Moses seat: Matt. 23, [...]. 3. Al there­fore whatsoeuer they bid you obserue, that obserue and doe; For in another place our sauiour spea­keth of the same Pharisies,Matt. 15, 14▪ Let them alone, they be the blind leaders of the blind. Of which I wil conclude two thinges; one is, Howe they are to be harkened vnto so long as they sit in Moses seat, that is so long as they bring the pure doctrine of Moses. The other is, how al words, whereby we are commanded to obeie the rulers and teachers of the Church, haue à condition though vnexpressed, namelie, how they are to be obeied, if so be they teach those thinges which the Lorde hath inioined them to teach, that is, they are to be obeied, if the Lord speake in their mouthes, and not that [Page 159] old serpent that seduced our first parents. And this also is ment by those words of our sauior: he that heareth you (to wit,Luk. 10, 16. vttering my words) heareth me.

The last part of iuridical power,3. The Church hath power to vse disci­pline. is disci­pline, which is à schooling, whereby such as be receaued into the Church are gouerned, kept in order, yea & framed to religiō, righte­ousnes modestie, and other vertues, ye nothing vnsitting for Christians be committed: or in fewer words,Discipline what? Discipline is an ordering of the life, and of manners; and à training (aswel in­warde of the minde, affections, and wil; as outwarde of the tongue, gesture, and deedes) of men vnto godlines, honestie, and innocen­cie of life.

The partes of this discipline are to,Partes of discipline. namely direction and correction. Direction doth go­uerne and guid men in the right waie.Direction. Which direction must bee vsed after to the rule of Gods word; according to the lawes of godlie magistrates; and according to the examples of good men.Rule of gods word. The rule of Gods worde, teacheth what is to be auoided, and what to be desired and done. The catechisme of children propo­seth this rule, which more at large is declared in the sermons of the Prophets, and Apostles.

The lawes of godlie Magistrates doe prescribe a rule,Lawes of Magistrats. as maie seeme to bee most expedient in respecte of the differences [Page 160] of ages, and callinges. Hereof there be some canons made for the discipline of the cleargie, and some for the schooling of the common people.Examples of the virtu­ous. Examples of good men are as pain­ted rules of the lawes. For what the lawes by the rules of Gods worde doe describe, and offer to the minde, that by notable examples is set before the eies in à manner. And there­fore Christ doeth saie,Ioh. 13, 15. I haue giuen you an ex­ample; Ephe. 5, 1. 2 And Paul, Be yee folowers of God, as deere children, and walke in loue.

The best waie then of teaching is,The best waie of tea­ching. to shew that by examples, which is taught by rules. And therefore they be much to bee praised who liue so, as they teach; if so be also they teach rightlie, as they liue.

For so saide Eusebius entering into the praise of Origen, Praise of Origen. This is he who liueth accor­ding to his speaking, and speaketh according to his liuing.

Correction is that,Of correctiō another part of dis­cipline. whereby such as wan­der from the right waie are brought into the same. This correction is vsed, either by telling men of their faultes, or by exhorting: or by reprouing, or by threatening, or by punish­ing. Al these at one time alwaies maie not be vsed, but according as he is giuen who hath gone-astraie. For if by telling the fault, & by exhortation he amende, other remedies are not needeful. But here prudent Censors of [Page 161] of behauiour, must endeuor in al correction to shewe à fatherlie minde, not crueltie. For, as the one encreaseth loue toward the correcters. so the other engendereth hatred, and contu­macie. As Ambrose doth saie, He that cruelie is chastised, and chidden, receaueth neither chi­ding, nor amendement. But if neither telling, exhorting, chiding, nor threatening wil bring à man from his error, then sharper medicines must be tried, that is, it must be seene whe­ther punishment wil reclaime him into the right waie who hath wandered, according to the doctrine of the Gospel.

This punishment is twofold,Punishmēt twofold. to wit, either excommunication vppon wicked liuers; or cursing, vpon obstinate heretikes.Excōmuni­cation. But first let vs speake of excommunication, the which when it is to be showen, it must be done both wiselie to edification, and grauelie with much compassion, the sentence of the superior offi­cers being first pronounced against the obsti­nate guiltie person. Notwithstanding singu­lar heede must be taken heere, that you doe not so plucke vp the tares, that ye destroie the wheate withal. Which thing maie be auoi­ded if the endes of excommunication, which are three,Ender of excommunica­tion. be had in minde. The first is, that à wicked liuer to the great reproch of God, & his Gospel bee not suffered among Christi­ans. The seconde, that the good also maie [Page 162] not be corrupted through the continual fami­liaritie of the wicked.1. Cor. 5, 6. For, à litle leauen leaue­neth the whole lumpe. The last is, that he which hath fallen through shame of the worlde, maie at length repent, and be reconciled to the Church. These three endes are al for the edi­fieng, and vnitie of the Church. And it is dili­gentlie to be considered, when excommuni­cation doeth edifie, and when it doeth not. For if it doeth destroie rather than edifie, it must not be vsed at al. Which made Augustin, speaking concerning the remedie of excom­munication, to saie, Let this be done, where there is no daunger of schisme; tares be to be rooted out, so that the wheate be not plucked-vp withal.

Moreouer of excommunication, as also of receauing the brother that fel into the Church againe, you maie reade both in my booke Of à Pastor and likewise in mine Enchiridion.

Curssinge is to be exercised onelie vppon heretikes,Curssinges. Who to be curssed. that is vpon defacers of the gospel, such as after sundrie admonitions doe obsti­natelie maintaine their errors, and wil not re­pent.Heretikes who. These forsomuch as they are, Paul saith, in themselues damned, they be vtterlie to bee cut from the bodie of Christ,Titus. 3, 11. that is from the Church, that others by their contagion maie not be infected, and so by litle and litle the kingdome of Christ be destroied. And yt this punishment both maie and ought to be exe­cuted [Page 163] vpon heretikes, first that testimonie of Paul twice repeated, Gala. 1. doth confirme, Though we, Gal. 1, 8. or an Angel from heauen preach vn­to you otherwise, thē that which we haue preached vnto you, 9. let him be accursed. As we saide before, so saie I nowe againe, If anie man preach vnto you otherwise then that ye haue receaued, let him be accursed. Secondlie that commaundement of Paul belongeth hitherto,Titus. 3, 10 11. Reiect him that is an heretike after once, or twice admonition, knowing that he that is such, is peruerted and sin­neth being damned of his owne self. 2. Iohn. 10. Hitherto also maketh yt of Iohn in his second Epistle, If ther come anie vnto you, and bring not this doctrine, receaue him not to house, neither bid him, God speede. Hitherto in like sort tende the exam­ples of the fathers, who by this curssing puni­shed both Arrius, Sabellius, Manes, & others. And that this heauie punishment of al other maie rightlie be vsed, special heede must bee had that it be not exercised rashlie, through affectiōs the matter being not throughlie ex­amined, and knowen. Which when it is not done, the curssing doth not somuch bind them which wrong [...]ulie are strucken, as it doth thē which vniustlie condemne. For, seeing yt God vnloaseth what man bindeth, the rashnesse of man is not to be feared: insomuch as Christ al­so did foretel howe the Pharisies shoulde ex­clude the preachers of the Gospel: as the Pope which is verie Antichrist doeth.

[Page 164] For, hee casteth not his thunderbolte of cursses against heretikes,Whome the Pope doth cursse. but against thē which syncerelie doe defende the writinges of the Prophetes, and Apostles; against them, who teach the sinnes of men are clensed onelie by the bloode of Christ; against them that wil not cal vpon sainctes; against them which wil not embrace al the toies and trumperie of the Pope; Finalie against them, that worship not the Pope euen as God himselfe, that is against them, which preferre not the Popish traditi­ons before the worde of God. Wherefore the Popes curssings be no more to be feared, then are the cursses of à filthie fleshlie louer, who blameth such as he hath ben naught withal for leauing his wicked companie, and ioining themselues to honest men in godlie marri­age.

CHAP. 18.
1. Of the auctoritie of the Church; 2. of tra­ditions; 3. of the interpretation of the scrip­tures; 4. and of the outward notes of the vpright state of the Church.

With this power there is auctoritie ioined, which I saideAboue cap. 15 pag. 149 was the third part of the vpright state of ye Church. Vnder this aucto­ritie they put tradition, and interpretation of the scripture.Traditions. By tradition the Papistes vn­derstand [Page 165] the lawes which the Popes, Bishops and Prelates doe thrust-vpon the Church be­side the worde of God, yea and often contra­rie also vnto the same. And that they maie seeme to stablishe, and to builde this their au­ctoritie vpon the worde of God, they aleadge both the saieng of Paul, and the example also of the Apostles. The saieng of Paul is this: Keepe the traditions which ye haue beene taught, 2. The. 2, 15 either by worde, or by our Epistle. The example of the Apostles they bring-out, who comman­ded the Gentiles to absteine from thinges offe­red vnto idols, Act. 15, 28. 29. and bloode, and that that is stran­gled. Hereof ye Papistes do gather two things: One is, howe they haue auctoritie to make what traditions they list; another that the peo­ple oweth obedience vnto them. But what answere is to be made maie appeare, both by the exposition of the word Tradition; and al­so by the difference of rites and ceremonies. First therefore let vs shew how this word tra­dition is vsed.What the word tradi­tion doth signifie. For both ye Apostles, and ye ho­lie fathers also tooke it far otherwise, than do the papistes; & by the comparing of scrip­tures we wil make it euident. Paul in his first Epistle vnto the Corinthians, writeth after this wise;1. Cor. 15, 3. First of al I deliuered vnto you that which I receiued, howe that Christ died for our sinnes according to the Scriptures: 1. Cor. 11, 23 And 1. Co­rinthians 11. For I haue receaued of the Lorde [Page 166] that which I also haue deliuered vnto you, to wit, That the Lorde Iesus in the night that he was be­traied, Matt. 15, 2. tooke breade, &c. Matth. 15. Whie do thy disciples transgresse the tradition of the Elders? Of these places I do gather how ther be three sortes of traditions:Three sorts of traditions the first of doctrine; the seconde of diuine ceremonies; the last of hu­mane rites.Tradition of doctrine. Tradition of doctrine is yt which is deliuered touching the lawe, and the gospel, and such thinges are conioined with them: which, forsomuch as they are commaunded of God maie not be altered.Tradition of diuine ce­remonies. Tradition of di­uine ceremonies, is of baptisme, and of the Lordes supper in the newe Testament; which likewise dependeth vppon the auctoritie of Christ,Tradition of humane rites. and therefore is immutable. Traditi­on of humane rites containeth manifolde ca­nons both touching ceremonies, and also con­cerning discipline of the clergie & laitie: this maie be altered for the profite of the Church at the discretion of gouernors. Irenaeus in his third booke vseth the word Tradition often­times for the doctrine which the Apostles from God deliuered to their auditors; and the same auctor calleth the Apostolical Creede ye the tradition of the Apostles. Now then see­ing the Church, according to the doctrine of Paul, hath auctoritie to ordeine such rites as make for edification,2. Cor. 10. 8. for so he saith; Power is giuen vs for edification; 1. Co. 14, 40 Againe, Let al thinges [Page 167] be done comelie and in order: godlie magistrates maie appoint rites for comelines, and order sake.Endes of comelines in the Church. The ende of comelines is twofolde; first by these helpes to stir vs vp vnto godlines, se­condlie, that modestie and grauitie maie▪ bee seene in the handling of Gods matters.Why order is to be ob­serued in the Church. Order hath three endes; one is, that rulers, and prea­chers of the worde maie haue à certaine rule to worke by; another, that auditors maie bee trained vp vnto obedience and discipline; and the third, that peace and concord maie be pro­uided for, the Church being set in à good staie. And herein the people doeth owe obe­dience to ye magistrats of the Church; yet with certaine conditions.How manie things are to be auoi­ded in the traditions of men. For in the traditions of man manie thinges are to be taken heede-of. First, that they be not contrarie to the rule of faith; neither that they bring vs from Christ. As doe manie of the popish rites of inuocati­on of sainctes; of prophanation of the masse; 1 of buieng & selling pardōs; of bearing-about & worshiping bread; of holie water; of rosa­ries; of sundrie consecrations; of ye toies of pur­gatorie; & such like infinite vanities and de­ceipts of the diuel. In these the godlie are ex­cused by the cōmandement of an hier aucto­ritie, whereby we are bidden to bewar of ido­latrie. Secondly, that they be not preferred 2 before Gods heauenlie worde, and ceremo­nies; as they were sometime by the Pharisies, as maie appeare in ye Gospel after Mark:Mark. 7, 9. ye re­the [Page 168] commaundement of God, that yee maie ob­serue your owne traditions: and are at this daie by the Papistes; as maie appeare by the pu­nishments whereby the transgressors of Gods commaundement, and of the Popes traditions are corrected. It would therefore be knowen, that as the traditions of God through the cō ­mandement of God doe binde vs vnto per­petual obedience: so the traditions of men must giue place to Christian libertie and that 3 without case of offence. Thirdlie that they be not deemed necessarie vnto saluation, nor counted for the seruice of God of themselues, and ex opere operato, as they vse to saie. Last of al, that vnder the pretence of indifferencie they destroie not religion. For as the Papistes are subtil, such thinges as appeare to the eies goodlie, they doe amplifie; and vnder à sweet baite the hide deadlie poison. Some Papistes do exclame how their Masse, is neither com­maunded, nor prohibited by the word of God and therfore is a thing indifferent, and was in the feare of God ordained by the godlie fa­thers for the memorie of ye sacrifice of Christ. But vnder this goodlie shewe of wordes, as vnder a faire garment as it were, they conceale in abominable idole; whereof in due placeChap. 24. of this first part. we purpose to speak. And therfore it is wiselie to be regarded, when true consideration is had of comelines and of order.

[Page 169] Interpretation of the Scripture,Interpreta­tion of the Scriptures. (which is another thing theie put-vnder the authoritie of the Church) being a free gift of God, which the Lord bestoweth vpon whom he list, can­not be tied by mans authoritie vnto anie cer­taine caling of men. For as in olde time God bestowed not the spirite of prophecie, neither vpon the ordinarie Bishops onelie,Al the Le­uites, nor onelie the Leuites did not prophe­cie. naie fewe of them were adorned with that excelent gift; nor to the tribe of Leuie onlie, but at his plea­sure made manie of other tribes to be famous therebie: So the Sonne of God wil not haue this gift to be tied to ordinarie succession, but bestoweth it vpon whom he wil. In the tentes of the Hebrues it is giuen-out how Eldad and Medad did prophecie in ye hoste;Num. 11, 25 26. 27. 28. which thing when Ioshua the seruant of Moses could not brooke, he requested his Lord to forbid them. But what doth Moses?29. What, saith he, Enuiest thou for my sake? Yea, wold God that al the Lords people were Prophetes, and that the Lorde would put his spirite vpon them! So then the spirite of prophecie, and exposition of Gods worde, is the peculiar gift of God. Which he bestow­eth by meanes somtime, and sometime with­out meanes. When it is giuen without meanes it is counted for à miracle: but when by means, it is Gods ordinarie gifte, which he both im­parteth vpon such as earnestlie cal vpon him, & labor therfore; and encreaseth in those who [Page 170] doe vse it rightlie vnto his glorie.

But three things in this place are to be ob­serued.Touching interpreta­tion of the Scriptures three things to be noted. The first, although God indue manie with this gift, yet that none presume to teach in the Church, being not lawfulie caled there­vnto. For theie are neuer blessed in their do­inges, which rush-into the office of teaching without lawful caling; and doe runne before theie are caled. Which thing, if some factious fellowes would thinke-vpon, such troubles would not be in the Church at this daie, as there be. The seconde, that both the whole Church, and euerie member of the same, haue power, as abouein the chapiter imme­diatelie go­ing before, page. 157. 1. Iohn. 4, 1. What things interpreters doe vtter. also I touched, to proue the spirites. For so saith the Apostle, Trie the spi­rites whether theie are of God. The third is, how al the wordes of interpreters be not of equal weight. For some are probable, some certain­lie true, and some are meerelie erroneous. Things probable, for ye authoritie sake of the vtterers, are so long to be imbraced, as theie be not drawen into à wrong conclusion. Which if it fal out, we must not for mans credite, de­part from the manifest truth.

Thinges certainelie true, such as are both gathered, and confirmed out of the worde of God, are none otherwise to be receaued, than if God himselfe had pronounced them. For the truth of them dependeth vpon God. Such are the Creede of the Apostles, of the councel [Page 171] of Nice of Ambrose, of Athanasius, and such other thinges. Thinges meerelie false, con­trarie to the principles of religion, are to be auoided euen as the voice of the serpent that deceaued our first parentes. Of this kinde are the teachinges of al heretikes; and such are most of the Popes decrees, and canons. And to the detestation hereof, as thinges accursed and abhominable, we are driuen by the comman­dement of God his worde; if so be from the heart we loue true religion.

Hitherto concerning the partes of the vp­right state of the Churche,Notes and marks of the true church in the vp­right state, Luther in his booke intituled, D [...] Consiliis. whose outwarde notes, conteined vnder these three partes, be eight as Luther testifieth. The first is the prea­ching of Iesus Christ, without the knowledge of whome the true Church can not be at al, much lesse discerned. The second is, the right vse of baptisme, which is the doore as it were 1 wherebie men do enter visiblie into the fami­lie 2 of God. The thirde is, the lawful vse of the 3 Lordes supper according to the institution of Christ. The fourth is, the vse of the keies ac­cording 4 as Christ hath ordeined it, wherbie the Church declareth her power; when either through preaching it receiueth beleeuers into the kingdome of heauen; or thorough disci­pline correcteth disobedient children; or else receaueth such as repent into fauour a­gaine.

[Page 172] 5 The fift is, an authoritie to cal, and to conse­crate ministers through laieng-on of handes on them, who maie either preach, or baptise, or minister the Lordes Supper, or absolue. 6 The sixte is, publique praier, thankes-giuing, and praising of God in the congregation of 7 the saintes. The seuenth is, the Crosse. Here­withal Christ wil haue his to be marked, that theie maie be conformable to the image of his sonne. For whome he hath determined here­after to glorifie, those he schooleth afore-hand by the crosse,Rom. 8, 17. according to that, If we suffer with 8 him, we shalbe glorified also with him. The eight is, manifolde offices of loue betweene ye hous­holde of the Church, wherebie theie declare, howe theie are guided by the same spirite, and make haste vnto the same countrie.

CHAP. 19.
1. Of the troubled state of the true Church; 2. How the godlie should behaue themselues there­in; 3. Against an opinion of the Anabaptistes.

THe troubled state of the Church is,Howe, and wherein the Church is troubled. where either the offices both of ciuil, and Ecclesi­astical gouernors be mixed, and confounded; or the Prelates take Lordship vnto themselues ouer the Lordes heritage, 1. Pet. 5, 3. contrarie to the com­mandement of Peter; or vnitie is violated by [Page 173] Schismes; or the Church by heresies as by ra­ging tempestes is shaken; or discipline is loa­sed, or hindred either through the might of sinners, or through the cowardnes and feare of Ecclesiastical gouernours.

When the Church is thus out of quiet,Partes of the godlie when the Church is in trouble. it is the parte of the godlie to lament the wounds thereof; to acknowledge the common infir­mitie and sinnes of man; and by earnest praier to beg-at the handes of God, that he would vouchsafe to assuage the miseries; and represse the madnes of Satan and his limmes, who set snares either vtterlie to destroie, or greeuous­lie to afflict the church. Also let them comfort themselues by the examples of manie good men, who haue felt the same troubles. Let thē knowe that God causeth such affliction for the trial of the elect, 1. Pet. 1, 7. as by fire, as Peter saith. Let them set before their eies the stories of the Church in al ages. For as the diuel did beset our first Parentes in Paradise: so doth he con­tinualie set snares for ye godlie in the church, he raiseth-vp offenses, and horrible confusi­ons, and persecutions. For betweene the king­dom of Christ, & the kingdom, of Satan there is an vnreconcilable war, according to ye saieng I wil put enimitie betweene thee and the woman, Gen 3, 15. and betweene thie seede, and her seede. He shal breake thine head, and thou shalt bruise his heele. Neither be the Anabaptistes, nor Staphile to [Page 174] be hearkened-vnto,Against the Anabaptists Staphylus. who denie that to be the true Church, wherein be heresies, & schismes, and manners contrarie to profession. For both Paul doth plainelie shewe the vanitie of those men, who do cal the Church at Corinthus ho­lie; in whose outwarde assemblie for al that there were horrible heresies, pernitious schismes, & manie dead members: & Christ himselfe too compareth the Church not one­lie to à drawe net cast-into the sea,Mat. 13, 47 48. conteining good fishes and bad that are taken,Mat. 13, 24 25. & but also to à fielde, wherein both wheate and tares doe spring-vp together. Neither was Iudas, both à theefe, & à traitor, à let whie the companie of the Apostles was not the Church.

CHAP. 20.
1. Of the banished state of the Church; 2. How the godlie are to behaue them­selues therein.

THe Church is in banishment, when the godlie either doe remaine and liue where open confession of Christianitie is not admit­ted; or violentlie be drawen-awaie into such places, where the name of Christe is odious. Albeit this banishment be a miserable thing: yet, when theie cal into their mind the inward societie which theie haue with the blessed Trinitie, and Saintes of God, the godlie doe [Page 175] feele à wonderful comfort. And although it seeme verie grieuous to them, to be barred frō the fellowship, and communion of saintes in the sacramentes, and common praiers: yet for this wound theie haue à plaster, namelie the ioie of the spirite, wherebie theie reioice and lift-vp themselues against the cōming of the Sonne of God, whom theie looke-for, à redee­mer, and the finisher of their saluation.

Secondarilie,Ioseph. as the saintes in this banish­ment after the example of Ioseph,Daniel. and Daniel maie beare ciuil offices, gouerne, & be in sub­iection to prophane people: so after their ex­ample to, theie wil take heed, yt neither either by superstitious seruice, or by impuritie of prophane felowes theie pollute thēselues; nor yet suffer themselues, by anie craft of Satan so to be bewitched,Three chil­dren. that theie fal therbie into the trappes of the diuel. Those three companions of Daniel were in the subiection of à King who was both à tyran,Dan, 3, 19. 20. & and à wicked person, yea and in ciuil matters obeied him too, but being once bid to worship the image of the proude tyran, theie chose to be caste into an whote burning ouen, rather than to denie their faith.Dan. 6, 10. So Daniel would rather be throw­en into the denne of Lions, than he would but one daie intermit the inuocation of the true God.

But aboue al thinges beg theie by heartie [Page 176] and zealous praier at Gods hand, strength, & constancie of faith; and let them knowe that no refuge is neither more safe, or more sure, than is the name of the Lord, that is, earnest caling vnto God. For so doth Salomon saie, The name of the Lord is a strong towre, Rom. 18, 10 the righte­ous runneth vnto it, and is exalted.

CHAP. 21.
1. Of sacrifices in general; 2. Of the sacri­fices among the Iewes what theie were.

FVrthermore, seing the Psalmist in this verse maketh mentiō of altars, where God laieth as yong ones the godlie, & bringeth them vp; and altars be appointed for sacrifices, I wil adde here-vnto something concerning sacri­fices, and that especialie for the Papistes, who by this place would maintaine their idola­trous altars for masses, which the godlie doe knowe is nothing els but a diuelish propha­ning of the onelie sacrifice of Christe, who by his onlie sacrifice once offered, hath made the saintes perfect for euermore.

But that the more distinctlie wee maie speake of sacrifices, I wil entreate first of the Iewish sacrifices; then of the sacrifices of the prophane gentiles; after that of the Papistical idol, that is of the Masse, which theie saie is à [Page 177] sacrifice; and last of al of Christian sacrifices.

The Iewes by the commandement of God had two altars in the holie citie Ierusalem;Sacrifices of the Iewes. nei­ther was it lawful for them in anie place be­side Ierusalem to haue anie altars: the one was of burnt offeringes,Altars of the Iewes. where, and what; and was caled the altar of burnt offering; the other was of incense, and thereof was caled the altar of incense: both of them were figures of Christ. For as the al­tar of burnt offering did shadowe Christ, as à purger of sinne: so the altar of incense did fi­gure Christe, as he was an intreator and inter­cessor for man.Psal. 141, [...]. For incense did signifie praier. Or as witnesseth Dauid, who in his 141. Psal. doth saie, Let my praier be directed in thy sight as incense; & the lifting-vp of mine hands as an eue­ning sacrifice. For when that holie man Dauid being driuen into banishment could not bè at the sacrifices which were made at Ierusalem,Praiers. in place of incense he dedicateth holie praiers vnto the Lord; who be therefore signified by incense, because praiers be of none effect vn­lesse theie be lifted-vp with à godlie affection of the minde. But omitting altars, speake we nowe of the sacrifices of the Iewes, & that af­ter this maner. First let vs define what a sacri­fice is; then shewe we the causes; after that wil wee note the principal kindes; and last of al, adde some general thinges of the figura­tiue signification of sacrifices.

[Page 178] The definition maie be this.1. The defi­nition of the Iewes sacri­fices. Sacrifices of the Iewes were ceremonies of offering giftes, and burnt offeringes ordeined of God, & that either to pacifie God being offended, or to te­stifie their seruice, and religion. Which sacrifi­ces pleased not of them selues because theie were done, but in respect of ye faith of the of­ferers, and thinking vpon the spiritual signifi­cation. And that these rites were instituted of God,Iewish sa­crifices in­stituted of God. both the manifest commandement of God often repeated not in Exodus onelie, but also in Leuiticus; and also the testimonies wherebie God did testifie howe he liked wel of such seruice, doth proue. And although be­fore Moses time there was no expresse com­mandement touching sacrifices: yet that God accepted them being offered by the godlie, the examples of good men doe witnesse. Wherof it maie verie easilie be gathered how theie were commanded, albeit no mention be made thereof in the written worde. Againe Gods acceptation, doth confirme that he was the auctor of them, not onelie in tolerating them,Leuit. 9, 24 but also in cōmanding them to be vsed. For at foure seueral times the sacrifices of the saintes with fire from heauen were inflamed,1. Ki. 18. 38 which surelie was an apparent token of Gods alowing them.1. Ch. 21, 26 And yt these sacrifices pleased not of themselues,2 Chro. 7, 1. it maie easelie be gathered.Sacrifices of them­selues did not pacifie Gōd. For what wise man wil think that God wil be [Page 179] pacified with the slaughter, bloud, & burning of beastes set on fire? For the faith therefore of the offerers, and cogitation of à spiritual meaning theie liked God: which thing manie sentences of the Prophetes, doe testifie. Dauid doth saie,Psal. 51, 16. For thou desirest no sacrifice, though I would giue it: thou delightest not in burnt offering. And againe,Psa. 50, 7. Here O my people, and I wil speake; heare O Israel, and I wil testifie vnto thee: for I am God, euen thie God. I wil not reproue thee for thie sacrifices, or thie burnt offeringes, that haue not bin continualie before me. I wil take no bullock out of thine house, nor goates out of thie foldes. The prophet Ieremiah doth saie,Iere. 7, 22. I spake not vnto your fathers, nor cōmanded them, when I brought them out of the land of Aegypt, concerning burnt offeringes and sacrifices. Isaie. 1, 10. And again, saith Isaiah, Heare the worde of the Lorde, O Princes of So­dome: Isaie. 1, 11. hearken vnto the Lawe of our God, O people of Gomorrah, what haue I to do with the multitude of your sacrifices, saith the Lorde? I am ful of the burnt offerings of rams, & of the fat of fed beastes; & I desire not the bloud of Bullocks, nor of lambes, nor of goates. 12. When ye come to appeare before me, who required this of your handes to treade in my courts? 13. Bring no oblations in vaine: incense is an abomination vnto me. These sentences do seeme not onlie to be contrarie to yt cōmandement, which so often is to be found in Leuiticus, but also to condemne the whole Aaronical priest­hoode with the altars.

[Page 180] But for the concilement of these contrarie speeches, we wil aleage three testimonies, and two examples out of the Scriptures, who plainlie shal remoue awaie al doubtfulnes, Sa­lomon doth saie,Rom. 15, 8. The sacrifice of the wicked is abhomination to the Lorde. Psal. 50, 16. Dauid saith also, Vn­to the wicked God saide, what hast thou to doe to declare mine ordinances, that thou shouldest take my couenant in thie mouth, seeing thou hatest to be reformed, and hast caste my wordes behinde thee? And Isaiah after he reprehended ye sacri­fices of his people,Isaie. 1, 16. addeth, Wash you, make you cleane. Take-awaie the euil of your workes from before mine eies; cease to do euil. Learne to do wel; seeke iudgement; relieue the oppressed; iudge the fatherlesse, and defende the widowe. These places doe plainelie shewe howe the sacrifices of this people were reproued because of the vncleanenes of the heart, and il dealing to­ward man, or because of their froward confi­dence, and wicked conuersation. For as the hypocrites did offer their sacrifices before God for à recompence: so the wicked thoght howe by their burnt-offeringes theie were sanctified, albeit theie were touched with no feeling of their sinnes. Therefore seeing God commanded sacrifices to be offered, that theie might be exercises of godlines, surelie the of­ferers ought to bring vnfeigned repentance and faith, without which no maruel it is if the [Page 181] sacrifices were caled abhomination.Gen. 4, 4. 5. Caine & Abel did both offer sacrifices; notwithstan­ding God had respect vnto Habel and to his offering, that is, vnto his sacrifice: but vnto Caine and to his offering he had no regarde. Whie so? Because Habel bought à faith in the Messiah, whome his sacrifice did shadowe: wherebie also his obedience in sacrificing did please. But Caine sacrificed without faith, pre­suming vpon the dignitie of his worke. And therefore no maruel though God had no re­gard vnto his offering.

The summe of al is this: that sacrifice spi­ced with faith pleased as fat, and grateful: but that voide of faith it displeased as drie, & vn­grateful. But Dauid moste plainlie of al shew­eth in his 51. Psal. when the sacrifices of burnt offeringes do please; for thus he saith: The sa­crifices of God are à contrite spirit; Psal. 51, 17. à broken heart, O God thou wilt not despise. Ioining there-vnto by and by,19. Then shalt thou accept the sacrifices of righteousnes, euen the burnt offering and oblation; then shal theie offer calues vpon thine altar. Ther­fore let ye beginning of each good worke pro­ceede from an heart purified through saith, without which euerie worke, seeme it to the eie neuer so holie, is abominatiō before God.

This I haue spoken the more at large, be­cause of some among the fathers, who not wel vnderstanding the wordes of Dauid, and of [Page 182] Isaiah, do agre with Porphirie, who most wic­kedlie did slander the sacrifices of the Iewes, which were in vse, so long as the common­weale of Moses did stand. But the fathers: som­what to excuse these Iewish sacrifices, saide howe God did not command, but onlie suf­fer them to the ende theie might keepe the Iewes from idolatrie wherunto theie were in­clined.2. Causes of the Iewish Sacrifices

Now let vs see the causes of Iewish sacrifices in order, as we did propose in ye second place. First therfore the cause commanding offereth it selfe,The fi [...]st cause of sacrifices. who is God himselfe. Who, for that he is moste wise, not without great wisdome did command, and appoint this ceremonie. A­gainst whome, albeit dust and ashes wil set himselfe, and obiect manifolde absurdities: yet content we our-selues with the moste wise counsel of God, the which let vs oppose not onelie against that Atheist Porphirie, but also against the diuel and his members, who dare to oppose the dotinges of their foolish braine against the wisedome of God.Rom. 8, 7. Let vs knowe that the saieng of Paul is true, who saith, The wisdome of the flesh is enimitie against God. Tho­rough this cause commanding, the godlie a­mong the Iewes, did knowe, both how their sacrifices pleased God, when through faith theie were done vnto Gods glorie with true [Page 183] meditation of the spiritual signification, and also that theie were bound vnto obedience vntil Christ came of whome those sacrifices were figures, and who by his owne and per­fect sacrifice should set an ende to all figura­tiue sacrifices.

But, seeing the Iewes at this daie do obiect to vs howe their sacrifices should not be abo­lished, because God is vnchaungeable: I doe answere, so long as the cause and condition of the decree is in force,The second which is the material cause of sa­crifices. so long doth God him­selfe abide constant and vnchangeable. The material cause of Iewishe sacrifices was either the fruite of earth, or cleane beastes, which by certain tokens are distinguished in Leuiti­cus from the vncleane. It was furthermore en­acted that theie should not vse either leauen or honie in their sacrifices, but that theie shold season euerie sacrifice with salt. For God the law-giuer would haue them to acknowledge him to be auctor of al, aswel of such things as doe spring from the earth, as of al liuing crea­tures beside that are breade; and also craue his blessing,The thirde, which is the formal cause of sa­crifices. & refer the vse of al thinges vnto his owne glorie. The formal cause was the verie manner of sacrifising; which for that it was diuers, it were much to prosecute the same in this place; and therefore I remit the reader vn­to the book of Moses caled Leuiticus.

[Page 184] The endes of the sacrifices instituted,The last, namelie the final cause of sacrifices. were foure: whereof the first was, that the people prone vnto idolatrie might be reclamed ther­from by these exercises. The second, yt Gods people might bee kept in the seruice of one God, and haue à dailie occasion to exercise godlines. The thirde, that the people might haue à type of Christe the sacrifice to come. The fourth, that by thinking of Christ the sa­crifice to come, the Iewes might be warned of the grieuousnes of sinne, the which forsomuch as it could not be cleansed by the bloud nei­ther of buls, nor of goates, theie might know howe to be cleansed throughlie from their sinne, theie had neede of the bloud of the im­maculate lambe, that is of the promised seede, or Messiah, who alone could tel howe both to abolish the workes of the diuel, sin, and death, and also pacifie the offended father. Secondlie that in this minde theie should flie vnto the mercie of God proposed in the forenamed seede, and by faith depend vpon that seede, glorifieng ye Lord both in al their mind, heart, wil, & conuersation, who of his infinite good­nes, and wise counsel would after such à sorte redeeme mankind. With such motions did the fathers, Habel, Noah, Abraham, Isahac, Iaacob, Moses, Dauid, Salomon, Elias, and manie o­ther which feared God, sacrifice.

For these knew right wel how by the out­warde [Page 185] worke onelie, God was not pleased, but that he respected besid, the faith, and the mind of the offerers. Notwithstanding some as hy­pocrites & wicked liuers among this people, did thinke that God regarded the outwarde worke, and thereby was pacified as by an ex­piatorie sacrifice. And therefore the Lorde doeth testifie that their sacrifices were both abhominable to him, and neuer exacted of him.

In the third place the kindes of the olde sacrifices doe folow,3. Kindes of Iewish sa­crifices. the principal and cheefe diuision whereof is this: That one kinde was expiatory caled Olah, The first kinde of sa­crifices. & burnt sacrifice, which was offered for sinne by à certaine showe of purging. For in verie deede it purged not sinne, but onelie bare à figure of the purging to come through the onlie sacrifice of Christ, al this being lifted vp vpon the altar was con­sumed with fire. Whereby was signified, that Christ the Priest and the sacrifice shoulde be lifted-vp vpon the altar of the crosse,The second sort of sa­crifices. & with the fire of loue be burned for our sinnes. An­other was of testification called Hodah. Sacrifice Eucharisti­cal, or Pro­pitiatorie. For it was done either for supplication, or thankes­giuing sake, or else for exercise of godlinesse: the which of the principal ende thereof was tearmed, eucharistical, as that other ilstical, that is propiciatorie. For as Paul interpretes ye same, it signified purging to come through [Page 186] the blood of Christ. For so he saith, Whom God hath set-forth to be à reconciliation through faith in his bloode. Rom. 3. 25. Whatsoeuer other sortes be men­tioned, they are contained vnder these.

Touching the figuratiue signification of olde sacrifices,4 Figuratiue significations of Iewish sa­crifices. the Epistle vnto the Hebrewes teacheth generalie, howe al were figures of that onelie sacrifice Iesus Christ, which being offered, al other thinges as figuratiue, ought to cease. But more particularlie we wil in this place set-downe some things, especialie those, which maie leade vs as it were by the hande vnto à spiritual instructing of our life and ma­ners.The priests office in sa­crifising. First therefore commeth-forth the con­secration of Priestes, whose dutie was to of­fer the sacrifice: they had foure thinges to do. First, they shoulde washe themselues with water; whereby was signified, howe by na­ture they themselues being vncleane, were to be cleansed by spiritual water, which Christ the chiefe Prieste alone doeth sprincle; an ef­fectual badge whereof Baptisme is. Then, they were to put-on garments, not their owne but the priestlie garments, which thing betoke­ned the innocencie of Christe, wherewithal being cleansed, and cloathed with his blood, they doe seeme righteous and bewtiful in the presence of God. After that they were annoin­ted, whereby the spiritual ointment, where­withal [Page 187] they are annointed for Prophetes, kings, and priestes; and whereby they maie be effectualie taught concerning the vertue of Christ his benefites, is signified. Lastlie, they filled their handes, that is they sacrificed; for then obedience doeth please God, when it is shewen of thē who are purged through faith; cloathed with the righteousnes of Christ; and vncted with Gods holie spirite. When they offered burnt offeringes, they were admoni­shed to offer vp thēselues spiritualie to God. Wherevnto Paul in his 12. chapter vnto the Romanes had regarde.

When these partes of liuing creatures, as the kidneie, the liuer, the fat, which partes of al others are prone vnto concupiscence, were sacrificed, they were put in minde of killing wicked lustes and concupiscence, that they might addict themselues al whole to the ser­uice of God. The parting of the beastes did giue them to learne, howe they shoulde cut the worde of God aright, and applie the same according to ye condition of men. which thing Paul seemeth to point-at,2 Tim. 2. 25 when he comman­deth to deuide the worde of trueth aright.

Of the double signification of the altar we haue spoken alreadie. Neither maie we ouer­passe howe it was decreed that neither leauen nor honie shoulde be vsed in sacrifices, but [Page 188] that they shoulde besprincle euerie sacrifice with salt. For as we be admonished by leauen that malice is to be excluded, according to the teaching of the Apostle; and by honie, that al hypocrisie must be laid-awaie: So the salte doeth signifie that al workes ought to be sea­soned with spiritual wisdome, faith, and prai­er; otherwise they wil not please God. Moe notes of this matter you maie reade in our Commentarie vpon the Epistle vnto the He­brewes.

CHAP. 22.
1. Of the original cause of idolatrie; 2. Of the diuerse Gods in times passed; 3. Festiual daies; 4. and sacrifices among the Gentiles.

AFore we come vnto the sacrifices of the Gentiles, wee wil saie somewhat concer­ning their Gods, and their sundrie feastes, that thereby we maie cal into minde, both what an horrible punishment the blindnes of such as depart from God is; and what à great and vnspeakeable benefite it is to haue the worde of God, which not onelie sheweth to vs the true God, but also prescribeth a right forme of seruing God, whereby wee maie bee led through the kingdome of the grace of Christ [Page 189] in this life; vntil we shal attaine vnto ye marke, yt is vnto glorious immortalitie, where we shal be conformable to Christ our Lorde for euer­more. which conformitie is the repairing of the image of God in vs, and the last ende of our creation, and reparation through the son of God our onelie redeemer.

In the 31. chapter of Genesis mention is made of the Gods of the Gentiles, The origi­nal of idola­trie. where La­ban vnto his sonne in lawe, Gen. 31, 30. doth saie, Where­fore hast thou stolne my goods? Whereof wee maie gather, that the worde of the promise being obscured among the posteritie of Noah foorth-with they inuented strange Gods and fained worshippinges. For seeing, as Cicero doth saie, There is no people, neither so vnciuil, nor so sauage, but although they be ignoraunt which is the true God: yet they knowe that some God is to be worshipped, hauing lost the true God, and his worde, they made to themsel­ues fained Gods, which thing Paul doeth pronounce was the punishment of their neg­lecting the true God, Rom. 1, 21. when he saith. Because that when they knewe God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankeful; but became vaine in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was ful of darkenes.22. When they professed themselues to be wise,23. they became fooles. For they turned the glorie of the vncorruptible God to the simili­tude of the image of à corruptible man, & of birds, [Page 190] and fourefooted beastes, and creeping thinges. Wherefore also God gaue them vp to their heartes lustes,25. vnto vncleanes, to defile their owne bodies betweene themselues; which turned the trueth of God vnto à lie, and worshipped and serued the creature, forsaking the creator, which is blessed for euer.Idolatri the iust punish­ment of for­saking God 2. Thes. 2. 11 12. So then idolatrie, and the inuention of fained Gods is the iust punishment of apo­stasie from the true God. And this was it which ye same Apostle doth saie: Therfore God shal send thē strong delusiō, that they should beleue lies, that al they might be damned which beleeued not the truth, but had pleasure in vnrighteousnes.

Hitherto of the occasion,Gods of the Gentiles. and cause of ido­latrie among the Gentiles, nowe ad we some­what concerning the diuers Gods which they had. The posteritie of Noah, being grosse & rude, did not worship God the creator, and gouernor of the worlde, but the things which to the sight appeared goodlie, and wonderful in their blockish and most dul iudgementes they tooke for Gods. This error flowed from the parentes vnto the children, & daielie more and more encreasing, through continuance of time it waxed strong. The ages folowing dee­med it impietie to resist the same. For the po­steritie thinke they doe owe that reuerence to their predecessors, which children do to their parentes (euen as many at this daie wil not de­part from Poperie because of the reuerence yt they beare to their forefathers.) And therefore [Page 191] some because of their goodlie shew & great­nes, worshipped the heauens, the starres, the Sunne, Moone, & elementes. Some did num­ber brute beastes of whome they reaped anie commoditie, among the Gods; so did the E­gyptians oxen, cats & serpents. Some ascribed diuine honor to men, either in respect of be­nefites, or for feare, or for flatterie. Some ac­counted euen the foule diuels, for Gods. And others esteemed Palenes, Feare, the Ague, and such like for Gods. Al those through the great, & most miserable calamitie of mankind were called and counted Gods. But, to speake onlie of men admitted into the companie of ye Gods, that was extreeme madnes of theirs, to choose them as they did, not for their noble virtues, but for their notable & egregious vi­ces, as they did epicures, wantons, harlots, ad­ulterers, and them which had ben most sham­fulie defiled with ye incest euen of their owne mothers, their owne sisters, their owne daughters. The father of ye Gods they faine somtime in ye shape of à bul, somtime of an Eagle, som­time of a swane, somtime of à golden fleece to be disguised, & so to haue defloured, & defiled virgins, & women. They say Mercurie ye presi­dent of sweet speech, changed himselfe into à goate to obteine his desired pleasure with Venus. what should I make mention either of Apollos heate; or of the in temperancie [Page 192] of Daphnie the virgin? What shoulde I tel, howe the same Apollo embraced the bodie of à senselesse baie-tree, through vntemperate lust? Howe Proserpina was stolne-awaie by Pluto? Howe the mother Ceres did wan­der?

For these Gods,Festiual daies appointed to the Gods. the Diuel, enimie to man­kinde instituted festiual daies, solemne cere­monies, and popular banketes to bee kept, e­uerie one hauing à seueral title, or name. To Iupiter, Panthea; to Iuno, Herea; to Minerua, Panathenea; Dionysia, to Father Bacchus; to Ceres, Eleusinia and Tesmophoria; Delia to A­pollos; and Phithia Hermea to Mercurie; to Neptune, Posidonia; to Hercules, Heraclea; Ae­sclepia, and Panasia to Aesculapius were dedi­cated.How the Gentiles holie daies were vsed. At these feastes of the Gods al man­ner wickednes was committed; and wine so immoderatlie quaffed-vp, that the next daie they woulde be sicke of surfetting; yea such as at al other times abhorred dronkenes, at these feastes woulde commende the same as an ho­lie worke. And thereof the Greeke word that signifieth dronkenes,Dronknes. did spring. For Methe is nothing else but as it were Metha to thuein, yt is after sacrifices. And because of the paine proceding from surfetting, the next daie after the feast, was called Episda. Whereof the name is translated vnto the time of reuen­gement for the wickednes before committed. [Page 193] Other things cōmitted at these bankets were so abhominable, that for shame I cannot vtter them: wherefore let vs come vnto the sacri­fices themselues.

Some did sacrifice frankencense to their Gods▪ Sacrifices of the gentiles. others wine and hearbes: afterward in processe of time they offered sometime euen whole flockes of shepe; sometime an hundred bullocks. Whereof came that name Ekatombe, which Homer vseth. Some did sacrifice euen whole heards of oxen also. And at the length through the instigation of sathan that mur­therer, who by his oracles seduced the mindes of men, they came to that passe that they sacri­ficed men. Through which madnesse not one man alone, nor one countrie onelie, but euen verie manie nations were driuen to thinke, that the Gods were pacified by the offering of mans fleshe. Diogenes, as Theophilus doeth report, persuaded children to slaie their owne parentes in sacrifices, and to eat their flesh. It was à custome among ye Grecians at the yeer­lie feastes of Bacchus to sacrifice quicke men. The Lacedemonians did offer to Mars the fleshe of men. The same people, with other nations, in ye time of à dearth, or of war did run vnto the sacrifice of men, as vnto à last refuge. Wherof it came, that when Eumoiphus king of Thracia had inuaded Grecia with an armie, the king of Grecia fearing both himselfe and [Page 194] his people, sent messengers to know ye oracle of Apollo, that was of à foule and wicked spi­rite, and to craue howe the God offended might be pacified: to whome the oracle made aunswere, that by the sacrificing of the kings daughter, if her owne parents did kil her, be­fore they encountered with the enimie, the wrath of the God would be pacified. When Erechtheus the king, and Praxithea his wife heard this aunswere, they foorth-with did of­fer their murthered daughter vnto the diuel, and therevpon encountered with the enemie, and draue him from their kingdome. Aristo­demus in like sort killed his onlie daughter for the welfare of his countrie. It is reported how that Aristomenes Misenius at one sacrifice kil­led 300. men. The Herodians and Cretensians at the feast dais did offer to Saturne à dronken man, & boies vnder ye age of fourteene yeres. The Phenices & Carthagenians likewise did sa­crifice to Saturne ye yong children of Aldermē set-out in princelie apparel: and for neglecting this oblation, after they were ouer-come of Agathocles, to pacifie the God offended, at one time they offered vnto the diuel 200. sonnes of noble men. The Romanes were of opinion that Saturne, and Iupiter Latialis were pleased with the sacrificing of men, and besprincled the images of them with mans bloode. The Britanes for à long while did vse to sacrifice [Page 195] the blood of captiues in their sutes to ye Gods. The French-men when they waged battel did flee vnto the sacrificing of men. The Germans likewise by à barbarous custome thought it à great point of Gods seruice to sacrifice mans bloode to Mercurie. So the Cimbrians bounde to stakes giltie persons which they kept for ye nonce, and offered them to their Gods for sa­crifices. The [...] Amonites which bordered vpon ye Iewes offered their sonnes & their daughters to the idol Moloch, ye which as some Hebrewes doe giue out, was an holowe image made of brasse, wherein children were included, that fire beeing put there-vnder they might bee consumed. Other nations there-about did vse this sacrifice after another custome. For, ha­uing builded, & set-on fire two piles of wood, they draue their sonnes and their daughters into the flames of fire▪ and so long did enforce them to goe vp and downe in the flame, vntil they died. This barbarous ceremonie did A­chas and Manasse kinges of the Iewes imitate, and that by the example of Mesa king of the Moabites, naught regarding the cōmandement of God to the contrarie in Leuiticus chapter 18, and 20. Which crueltie the Lorde by the prophet Ieremiah doeth condemne,Iere 7, 13. Ieremie 7. where it is thus written, They haue built the hie place of Topheth, which is the valleie of Ben-Humon to burne their sonnes and their [Page 196] daughters in the fire, which I commanded them not, neither came it in mine hearte. For the wic­ked hypocrites did thinke, that if calues for à burnt sacrifice did please God; the oblation of their sons for à burnt sacrifice would much sooner please him. And if God was delighted with the obedience of Abrahā which offered his sonne Isaak; whie should hee not like also the oblation of our children? And so by their blind vnderstanding they presumed to cor­rect the manifest commaundement of God, which in expresse words forbiddeth to sacri­fice of their seede to the idole Moloch. But what maie be learned hereby? We maie learne two thinges. First, how extreeme the crueltie of sathan vpon mankinde is; and how greate the darkenes of mans minde is, when they are destitute of Gods worde. For then they be carried from one idolatrie vnto another, and from one sinne vnto another, vntil blinded in al maner wickednes and impietie, they de­light themselues euen in their owne filthines: which doubtles is an horrible punishment of defection from God, and from his worde. Se­condlie, we, who by the worde of God are de­liuered from the tyrannie of sathan, and from the mistie darkenes of ignorance, hereby haue occasion offered vs continualie both to praise God for his goodnes toward vs; and to praie him earnestlie not to suffer vs to fal into olde [Page 197] or such like darkenes, For according to ye do­ctrine of Paul, God doth send them strong delusiō, that they should beleue lies, 2. Thes. 2. 11▪ 12. and be deliuered ouer into à reprobate minde, which wil not beleeue the trueth.

CHAP. 23.
1. Of papistical sacrifices; 2. of consecra­tion of Popish Priestes.

THe Popedome, or kingdome of Antichrist haue their priests cōsecrated to offer sacri­fices, not according to the institutiō of Christ & exāple of ye Apostles, but partlie by wicked imitation of the old people the Iewes, partlie after the custome of the heathen. For from both, that is from the Iewes, and heathen peo­ple they haue borowed such thinges as they thought would serue best to the setting out of their toies, and fables. Therefore I wil speake first of the consecration of Popish Priestes; then of the papistical sacrifice, or masse; & last of al, of some other thinges which maie be thought middle,A popish Priest who. and indifferent thinges.

A popish Priest is à person by ointment, & shauing distinguished from other men, or­dained both to sacrifice Christ, and also to of­fer praiers and vowes in the masse for the quicke and deade, and for other necessities. That this is the state of ye Popish priesthood, the whole papacie, the canon of the masse, and [Page 198] the forme of wordes, whereby the mitred Bi­shops are wont to consecrate their sacrificers, doe witnesse. We giue you, saie they, power to offer expiatorie, that is peace offeringes, Hence is it that they brag howe they are mediators betweene God and men; and haue power to sacrifice for the quicke and deade. Here, if according to the Prouerb, we wil cal à boate à boate, and à spade à spade, doubtles the Popish Prieste, somuch as in him is, doeth spoile Christ of the honor, which the heauenlie fa­ther by a solemne oth hath confirmed, Psalm. 110.Psal 110, 4. The Lorde sware and wil not repent, Thou art à Priest for euer after the order of Melchi-ze­dek. And the Epistle to the Hebrewes acknow­ledgeth Iesus Christ to bee the onelie Prieste who by his owne sacrifice once offered, hath for euer made thē perfect who are to be san­ctified, and because of the perfection thereof, saith he hath no need of successors, as those fi­guratiue Priestes of the olde Iewes had. And therefore the Popish Priesthood doth not on­lie fal downe by the worde of God, and testi­monie of the purer Church, but also is cleane contrarie to the Priesthoode of Christ. Pope Gregorie doeth saie: Woe be to vs if we enter-in without making à noise, that is, if wee boast that we are sheepeheardes, and be yet but dumme dogs. For nothing is lesse tollerable, than for him to be [Page 199] deemed à pastor in the Church, who doeth not speak, and whose voice maketh no noise to edifica­tion of the people. By these wordes Grego­rie doth applie the figure of the olde law vn­to the newe Testament. For, as bels were han­ged to the Priestes garmente; and Moses doth plainelie commaunde, that a Priest come-not abroade without making a sounde: So Gre­gorie wil not haue his Priestes to bee mute, but to teach. And therein hee meant wel [...] notwithstanding he swarued from the truth. For, as the bels of the legal Priestes, had God for their auctor: So it shal not bee suffi­cient for Gregories Priestes to haue à wide, and open mouth to iustruct al, vnlesse that sound depende vppon the auctoritie of God; that is, vnlesse they vtter-out pure doctrine, as Malachie speaketh of the law,Mal. 2, 7. The priestes lippes shal preseru: knowledge. And this was it which the Lorde by the Prophet Ezechiel doeth saie,Ezek. 3, 17. Heare the worde at my mouth, and giue them warning frō me. For the Lord cannot abid yt they should take à part from his word, & à part from the dreames of man; as it were intermixing corne and chaffe together, but he wil haue his owne word without mixture of chaffe to be heard.Ier. 23, 28. For so he saith, The Prophete that hath à dreame, let him tel à dreame; and hee that hath my worde, let him [Page 200] speake my worde faithfulie: what is the chaffe to wheate, saith the Lorde? Here doeth God set à limit or bound for Priestes which they maie not ouer-passe. As if he shoulde saie: I haue not appointed Prophetes and priestes to the ende they shoulde bring this or that indiffe­rentlie, and thrust the same vpon the Church at their pleasure, but that they defend ye pure worde and seruice of God, which the worde prescribeth. For as he compareth the pure worde of God vnto wheate: So whatsoeuer men out of their owne braine doe inuent, he likeneth it vnto chaffe. If then this lawe of God, and this limitation of ye power of priests doeth binde al, as indeede it bindeth, let the Pope shew vs anie word out of the writinges either of the Prophetes or Apostles of the vncting of their Priestes, of their shauing, of their power to offer Christ for the quicke & deade; and of their application of the merites of sainctes. If the Pope cannot doe this by plaine doctrine without sophistrie, surelie we are not bounde neither to his lawes, nor to re­ceaue his sacrificers for mediators betweene God and men.

But they haue à common refuge.Against good intents beside the worde of God. For they saie, priuat masses were instituted by ye Eccle­siastical gouernors of a good intēt; & haue ben approued by long custome, yea & by miracles confirmed too. As though good intentes had [Page 201] anie place, where the worde of God doth not shine. Yea foure manner of waies theie make themselues guiltie, which of their owne in­tent, which theie cal good, doe institute anie diuine seruice without the warrant of Gods worde. For, first theie are guiltie of apostasie from God. For theie go from this commande­ment giuen out by God himselfe,Ezek. 20, 18▪ 19. Walke ye not in the ordinances of your Fathers, &c. but walke in my statutes: Againe, Theie worship me in vaine, teaching for doctrines the commandementes of men. Marke. 7, 7. Secondlie, theie are guiltie of rashnes. For what is a more rash parte, than to presume to institute diuine seruice contrarie to Gods cō ­mandemēt? Thirdlie, theie are guiltie of pride, wherewithal God is highlie displeased, as though he knewe not wel enough, with what seruice to be worshipped. Last of al theie be guiltie of others faultes. For by their example other superstition dailie doth spring out. For men are the more emboldened to heape eth­nical superstition together, when theie see o­thers doe so before their face. Touching anti­quitie, I doe saie,Antiquitie. Against e­u [...]l custome. that an euil custome, be it for continuance neuer so ancient, is naught els than the oldenes of errour. The miracles wrought in Masse, were doubtlesse the illusi­ons of Satan, who by that meanes would con­firme idolatrie to the destruction of mankind. Wherefore we obeieng the worde and com­mandement [Page 202] of God, which is to be the rule of al our actions, let vs auoide the Pope with al his toies, and diuelishe inuentions as ac­cursed, the rather because, despising Christ our onelie priest together with his eternal priesthoode, hee faineth à certaine newe priesthod for profite sake to the reproche of Christ.

CHAP. 24.
1. Of the sacrifice of the Masse; 2. With the ab­hominations therein conteined; 3. A con­futation of the arguments which Pa­pistes do alledge to defende their idol the Masse.

BVt that the matter maie ye more euidentlie appeare, let vs see what manner of thing the sacrifice of Papistes is, that so we maie giue à more exact iudgement of Priestes. But afore we define the Popish sacrifice, that is the Masse, it is behoueful for vs diligentlie to be­holde the difference betweene the Masse it selfe,Comparison betweene à bodilie har­lot, and the spiritual whore the Masse. and the outward colour wherewithal it is painted. For as an harlot who setteth her bodie to sale, doth paint her selfe to al lasciui­ousnes, and vncleanenes; doth set-out her selfe with rings and iewels; and putteth-on costlie apparel, therwithal to alure to her selfe com­panions, [Page 203] whose substāce she maie wast-awaie: So that whore of Babylon, caled the Masse, commeth-abroade set-out as it were with golde and iewels, while she doth vse certaine holie lessons, and songes out of the worde of God, wherebie she doth easelie deceaue the ruder sorte, and the simple, who deceaued with the outward shewe, doe thinke her to be à verie chaste virgine, who in deede is à moste filthie harlot, hurting her companions more than the vilest harlot that maie be. For, as an impudent strumpet doth infect the bo­die of her louer with contagions and poiso­ned diseases: So this Babylonish, or Romane strumpet infecteth the soule of man with moste pestilent diseases,The Pope the spiritu­al baude. which no waie can be cured, before her baude, whiche is the Pope, be vtterlie renounced; and, the filthines of this harlot being knowen, Christe in time be made the physician who alone knoweth the waie to cure and heale the wounds of con­science. And therfore we must not stick in the outward appearance of the Masse, but in our minde we must haue deeper cogitations, what one she is in deede when her ornament is plucked from her. For beeing spoiled of the same, nothing wil appeare either more odi­ous, or more abhominable, or finalie more hurteful to mankinde than it is. Nowe beeing fore-warned by this admonition let [Page 204] vs define the Popishe Masse as it is of it selfe without al colours, and paintings.

The Masse with the Papistes is both à sa­crifice,The Masse à sacrifice, à sacrament. The Masse how à sa­crifice. and à sacrament. It is à sacrifice, when it is offered by à priest occupieng the place of à mediator betweene God and man for the saluation of the people, that is for à cleansing of the sinnes both of the quicke, and of the dead; and for the obteining of other thinges from God.

And it is à sacrament,The Masse when a sa­crament. while the feast made of Bread, of Wine, and of water, is deuoured onelie of the sacrifising priest. For I speake not in this place of the Masse wherein some peeces of bread are distributed among the people, without participating of the inchan­ted cup. This definition of the Masse is colle­cted partlie out of a Canon of the Masse, than which theie thinke nothing is more holie; & partlie out of the commentaries of the school­men, whome theie prefer before the writings both of the prophetes, and Apostles. And the Masse theie saie, signifieth à transmission: be­cause the people by the priest, who is in the place of à mediator betweene God and man, doth transmit, or sende-ouer praiers, vowes, and oblations. Howe horriblie the Sonne of God with his priesthood is dishonored here­bie, no man sufficientlie can conceaue.

But, because the yonger sorte without in­struction [Page 205] are not able to conceaue the ab ho­mination in this Popish Masse, I wil first saie somwhat touching the canon of ye Masse; and then gather reasons wherebie the pro­phanenes, and abhomination of this Masse maie apeare. First therefore I demande of the Papistes, of whome theie haue this custome of muttering this canon, wherein the mysterie of the Popish Masse, is contained. If theie saie of ye Apostles, theie make Pope Gregorie, whom theie cal Great, à loude liar. For he saith it was patcht-together by à cannot tell what school­man. If theie saie of Christ himselfe, let them alledge testimonies of the Euangelistes, who at large doe testifie the actes and saienges of our Sauiour Christ. Furthermore I aske whe­ther this canon be à parte of the doctrine of the Church, or no? If it be à parte of doctrine, whie doe theie deeme it vnlawful distinctlie to vtter the same, that al the congregation maie heare it? If it be no parte of heauenlie do­ctrine, whie shewe the Papistes more crueltie against them which reiect the canon, than a­gainst either harlots, incestuous persons, adul­terers, or traitors? But the reason is plaine; euē because theie preferre yea their smalest tradi­tions before the commandementes of God. If therefore this canon doth come neither from the Apostles, nor from Christ him selfe; nor yet is anie part of the doctrine of the church, [Page 206] doubtles verie wicked are theie which wil thrust the same vpon the Church of God, as though there-vpon the whole building of re­ligion did depend. As for me I am fullie per­suaded this Canon was brought into the Church by the diuel himselfe, the auctor of al idolatrie, and superstition. For the mum­bling with their theatrical gestures agreeth to the incantation, and curssed superstition of the Gentiles, rather than to the institution of Christ.

I wil therefore speake what I thinke of the Canon.The auctors iudgement of the canon of the Masse And first I saie, that it is neither ne­cessarie, because it is commanded by no word of God; nor profitable, because it maketh not vnto edification; nor yet indifferent, because it is cleane cōtrarie to the institutiō of Christ: but verie wicked; because it spoileth Christe of the honor of à Mediator. For he alone is both à cleanser of sinne by his onelie sacrifice; and the onelie mediator betweene God and man: which honor the canon ascribeth to à sacrifising Priest. It is also a polling thing; for it both was inuented, & is defended of Papists for lucre sake. It is à poison to soules; for it slaieth such as repose anie confidence there­in. It is not onelie à prophaning, but also an abolishing of the Lordes Supper. For it hath no one iote of Christe his institu­tion.

[Page 207] It is furthermore an inchantment. Be­cause, through the mumbling of these fiue wordes, For this is my bodie; and breathing of the priest vpon the bread, it maketh a trans­substantiation, as theie saie, of the elementes. Yea and it is idolatrous. For these fiue wordes be no sooner spoken, but both the Priest him­selfe doth adore the bread, and also offereth it to be adored of al the people rounde about him. And so in place of God theie bring-in à morsel of bread, and that to the greater disho­nor of God, than did Nabuchad-netzar, that commanded an image which he had set-vp, to be adored.

Thus much briefelie concerning the ca­non of the Masse. Nowe in order we wil re­cite the reasons, shewing what vnholines, and impietie is in the Masse.

The first.1. The first reason whie the Masse is abhomina­ble. It is horrible impietie, and sacri­legious impudencie to appoint anie seruice in the Church, without the commandement of God. For such boldenes is apostasie from God; whose worde is the light of life, accor­ding to that of Dauid:Ps. 119, 105 Thie worde is à lanterne vnto my feete, and à light vnto my path. And Salomon out of the worde of his father ga­thered this Prouerbe:Rom. 6, 23. The commandement is à lanterne, and the Lawe à light. So that where the commandement of God is not, men wan­der from the right waie.

[Page 208] Where the Lawe of God is not, there is meere darkenes. Hitherto in like sorte pertaineth the first commandement,Exod. 20, 3 Thou shalt haue none other Gods before me. And therefore it is for God alone, vpon whome each creature should de­pend, to prescribe the forme howe he wil be worshipped. Dauid then instructed by this commandement did praie aright, when he saide,Psal. 25, 5. Lead me forth in thie truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my saluation. Againe, Theie worship me in vaine, Mark. 7, 7. teaching for doctrines mens traditions. Then al the inuentions of man are vnnecessarie burdens, as theie which detract from the auctoritie of God. Further­more,Rom. 14, 23. whatsoeuer is not of faith, is sinne. For faith of the worde is faith. Wheresoeuer then the worde is not, in vaine doth man purpose to please God.Deut. 12, 8. Againe, Yee shal not do euerie man whatsoeuer seemeth good in his owne eies. And Ezekiel,Eze. 20, 18. Walke ye not in the ordinances of your fathers, 19. &c. Walke in my statutes. By these and manie other places, that is confirmed which we did propose. But this Masse, wherein theie feigne an oblation to be made for the quicke and dead, not onelie hath no commandement of God, which thing is necessarilie required in the maner of seruing God, but also is quite contrarie to the institutiō of Christ,Luke. 22, 19 who bid­deth the liuing to take, 1. Co. 11, 24▪ 25. eate and drinke, and to do that in remembrance of him. This reason should [Page 209] satisfie al good men, especialie such as knowe that the Prophets zealouslie doe reproue the blindenes of those men, which without the commandement of God, doe institute wor­shippinges in the Church. This foundation made the diuorcement betweene Luther and the Pope. This foundation doth cleare the consciences of such good soules as forsake the baude of Rome, and flie vnto their moste vn­corrupted spouse, euen our Lord Iesus Christ, the sonne of God. And this foundation doth strengthen, and comfort the saintes, while theie be compelled to sustein exile, affliction, shame, and losse of their goodes for the con­fession of the true doctrine, to whom long cu­stome, and the auctoritie of their Elders is too too impudentlie obiected. For as Tertullian saieth, none maie prescribe to the truth either spa­ces of time, or the authoritie of persons, or the pri­uiledge of regions. Because our Lord Christ, who continueth for euer, named himselfe the truth, not custome.

The second.2. Reason. It is cursed impietie, and abho­minable reproch against the sonne of God to turne-ouer ye glorie due to Christ alone, vnto à sacrifising priest. But this is don in ye Popish Masse. For the sacrifising priest arrogateth the glorie of offering à propitiatorie sacrifice for the sinnes of all men both quicke and dead to himselfe, when he braggeth howe he doth of­fer [Page 210] for the quicke and for the dead. For, as a­boue in the chap. next immediate­lie going. before.hath bin shewed, Popish priestes are to that end consecrated. But now, seeing the heauenlie father wil, that men doe repose the eternal sanctification of them selues onelie in the oblation of Christ (for so ye spirite of God in the Epistle vnto the Hebrues doth saie,Heb. 10, 12. But this man, to wit Christ, after he had offeredone sacrifice for sinnes, 13. sitteth for euer at the right hand of God, and from hence-forth tarrieth til his enimies be made his foote-stoole. 14. For with one offe­ring hath he consecrated for euer them that are sanctified. Heb. 9, 11. Againe, Christe being come an hie Priest, by his owne bloud entered he in once in­to the holie place, 12. and obteined eternal redemption for vs. 14. And againe, How much more shal the bloud of Christ which through the eternal spirite offered himselfe without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead workes, to serue the liuing God!) Who seeth not that cursed impietie, and abhominable reproche is done to the sonne of God by à sacrifising priest, if he arrogate e­uen the smalest part of Christe his glorie to himselfe!3. Reason. The third. The holie spirit in Paul doth saie:1. Tim. 2, 5. 6. There is one God, and one Mediator betweene God and man, which is the man Christe Iesus, who gaue himselfe a ransome for al men. In which saieng of Paul there be two things. The first, is an assertion wherebie Christe is made the mediator betweene God and man. The [Page 211] second, à reason of the assertion: namelie, for that Christ alone, and none but he hath giuen him selfe à ransome for al men. For Paule wil haue these partes of Christ his priesthood, to wit sacrifice, and intercession to be so ioined together, that theie cannot be seuered. As ther­fore Iesus alone is the priest, which by his sa­crifice once offered doth purge wickednes: so is he alone the mediator, by whome onelie we haue accesse vnto the Father. For the inter­cession dependeth vpon the merite of the sa­crifice. So that intercession can not be transfer­red vpon anie beside him, whose duetie it is to make propitiatorie sacrifice. When there­fore this dignitie of intercession is ascribed to à sacrifising priest, great iniurie is done to the sonne of God. But this do the Papists in their fained sacrifice. For theie doe not onelie arro­gate to them-selues the honour of purging sinnes; but also vsurpe the office of interces­sion, which is peculiar to Christ. For this is in their praier in the Masse: We offer to thie noble maiestie of thie benefites, and giftes, à pure sa­sacrifice, a holie sacrifice, an immaculate sacrifice, the holie breade of euerlasting life, and the cup of perpetual saluation, vpon which do thou vouch­safe to looke with à fauourable and gratious coun­tenance, and to accept them, as thou diddest vouchsafe to accept the giftes of thie childe Abel the righteous, and the sacrifice of our Patriarch [Page 212] Abraham; and that holie, and immaculate sacri­fice which Melchisedech thie most hie Prieste offered to thee. We humblie beseech thee, ô Al­mightie God, command these to be carried-vp by the hande of thine holie Angels vnto thine hie altar, &c. And again in the same secrete of the Masse theie ascribe the like honour to the dead, when the priest craueth that tho­rough their merites and praiers we maie be armed with the help of Gods protection. Here we do see à double impietie to be ioined toge­ther. For theie doe not onelie make à Priest the intercessor, who standeth-vpon the digni­tie of his sacrifice: but also theie craue that through the merites and praiers of the Apo­stles, and Martyrs, God would protect them. And although it folowe through our Lorde Ie­sus Christe: yet moste plainelie theie bewraie their impietie, in that theie testifie in plaine wordes howe theie depende both vpon the dignitie of the sacrifice, and merites of the Saintes. But when the Papistes doe obiecte howe Paule adhorteth, that one would praie, and make intercession for another: I answere, the saintes do praie, & make intercession each for others, not with anie confidence vpon their owne worthines and merites, but vpon the worthines and merites of the onelie Me­diator, our Lord, and sauiour Christ. But the Papistes in making the saintes Mediators, doe [Page 213] vnderstand such patrons as by their own me­rites & worthines maie purchase to vs the fa­uour of God. For this is à common principle among them, that men liuing in earth do need patrons in heauen, in as much as theie are vnworthie to appeare in the sight of God. By which saieng, beside that theie bereaue Christ our Mediator of his honor, theie make them­selues guiltie of threefolde impietie. For first, while theie make the dead intercessors for the liuing,The hu [...]t which com­meth by making saintes in­tercessor [...] for men. theie doe runne beyond the limits of Gods worde, and foole hardilie are carried in­to damnable darkenes, and vpon the steepe mountaines of Hel. From whence to returne backe, and to aspire aloft, that is à labour, and à sore paine. But what à prophanenes this is, the godlie alone do marke, who know that dark­nes is there, where the torch of Gods word is not born-afore; who know that al is abhomi­nable which God hath not decreed; and who consider, that al which dust and ashes doth in­uent in religion, without the direction of Gods worde, doth proceede from Satan. Se­condlie, when theie teach howe we must de­pend vpon the merites of saintes, theie depart from the true foundation of saluation, and seeke another foundation to builde their sal­uation vppon, without the worde of God.

For, seeing that mortal man by his owne merite can not attaine saluation, it is impos­sible [Page 214] that the merites of Saintes should bring saluation vnto others: which merites for al that the Pope faineth to be the treasure of the Church, which he dispenseth not gratis, but according to their disbursing, who acknow­ledge the Pope to be the treasurer of the Church. Thirdlie, in forging such fained pa­trons to themselues, theie are drowned the more deepelie in darkenes. For theie departe from the first commandement; and with cur­sed impudencie cal vpon Saintes driuen ther­unto by the diuel himselfe,Inuocation of saints whie found­ [...]s. who hath brought into the world the inuocation of Saintes, and that for these causes. First to bereaue Christ of his honor. Secondlie to make the saintes in­famous. Lastlie, that in time to come theie maie bee partakers of his eternal paines, who in this life doe cal vpon saintes.

The fourth.4. Reason. The Popish masse is laide o­pen for filthie lucre sake. For theie not onelie doe sel Masses for the redemption of soules out of purgatorie: but also make them com­mon to be bought for the obteining of anie thing. In which of sinns manie sinns do meete together, of which I wil recite à few, that with à perfect hatred we maie abhor ye most filthie lucre of the Masse. For first, this gaine striueth against the foundation of our saluation, which is free mercie.Ephes. 2, 8 For by grace, saith Paul, are ye sa­ued throgh faith, & that not of your selues, it is the [Page 215] gift of God. Not of workes, least anie man should boast. Secondarilie, it abolisheth the Lordes supper.Lords Sup­per whie instituted. For who is so blind, but maie see how it is farre from the Supper of Christe to seeke filthie gaine therebie, which supper the Lord would haue to be à notable argument of his inward loue toward the Church, and à testi­monie of the redemption of the Church by his death, which free redemption of his belo­ued spouse he sealeth in his supper. Thirdlie this hūting after gain doth vtterlie ouerthrow the Prophecies of the prophets concerning ye benefites of the Mediator of the Newe Testa­ment.Isaie. 55, 1. Ho, saith Isaiah, euerie one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and ye that haue no siluer, come, 2. buie, and eate: come I saie, buie wine, and milke without siluer, and without monie. By wa­ter, wine, & milke the prophet vnderstandeth the benefites of the Gospel, which he pro­nounceth are freelie bestowed. For as our bo­dies are nourished by bread, wine, water, and milke: so our soules are nourished, and su­steined by the doctrine of the Gospel, by the holie Ghost, by the sacraments, and other such free giftes of Christ. Fourthlie, the buieng and selling of the Popishe Masse doth make mise­rable men drunke with carnal confidence.

For by paieng monie for this feigned pur­gation, as it were for an effectual medicine, theie persuade them-selues that theie driue-awaie [Page 216] al diseases of the soule, and that with­out faith, & repentance. And because by Mas­ses purchased theie trust theie be armed a­gainst the diuel and death, theie goe-on the more boldlie in wickednes, and dailie become the more obstinate. Fiftlie, this gaine of Masses is the ground of Purgatorie. For to make their Masses the more vendible, the Priestes did teach howe there was a Purgato­rie of soules after death,The foun­dation of Purgatorie. wherein the soules of the dead should be deteined, vntil theie were purged sufficientlie from the spots of sinnes committed in this life. And therefore Mas­ses were appointed to be solde to them, who desired that either them selues, or their friendes might be deliuered from the fire of purgatorie: wherebie theie fained that the paines of purgatorie were brought-out. Henc [...] the Patrimonie of Peter, as theie cal it, was exceedinglie encreased. And hence it is, that the goodes of miserable men are translated from the true heires vnto balde Priestes and Monkes. Sixthe, this gaine of the Masse, and▪ subtiltie of the Romane baude, is the strength of the Papacie, that is of the Anti­christian kingdome. And therefore maruel it is not, though the Papistes doe so fiercelie contend and fight for their altars. For theie feare much that their chimneies would fal downe, if their altars were once ouerthrowen.

[Page 217] The fifte.5. Reason. It is abhominable idolatrie to worship à peece of bread in ye place of Christ. For, as à litle aboue we haue touched also, the Priest after ye mumbling of the historie con­cerning the institution of Christ, doeth firste of al adore the bread himselfe; and then lifteth the same vp, that the people maie worshippe it. For the Papistes be persuaded that by the virtue of the mumbled wordes of the institu­ted supper, the elementes of breade and of wine be transsubstantiated into the verie bo­die and bloode of the Lorde; which they lay open to be adored, but verie erroneouslie. For this transsumbstantiation so stiflie defended by Thomas, is contrarie to the nature of a sacra­ment. For, as in baptisme it is required that the substance of water doe remaine, which while it is sprincled according to Christ his institution, is à right sacrament, and with that water after à secret sort the verie bloode of Christ, whereby the inward man is washed from wickednes, yea and putteth-on Christ himselfe, is present: So it is required that in ye supper of the Lord, the substance of breade and wine doe remaine, which being reached-forth and taken after the institution of Christ, are à verie sacrament, and with that bread & wine after à secret sorte, the verie bodie and bloode of the Lorde, whereby the inwarde man is nourished, fed, and refreshed, are pre­sent. [Page 218] So that before the vse whervnto they be ordeined, bread and wine are no more à sacra­ment, than is the water of baptisme. And ther­fore it is as great madnes to worshippe the breade and wine, as if à man woulde worship the water either to be sprincled vpon à man to be baptized, or sprincled alreadie, and re­serued for worship sake. Nowe whereas the Papistes doe attribute to the reciting of the wordes of the supper, virtue to transsubstan­tiate, to speake as they do, the elements, sure­lie they haue learned that of the Magicians, and witches, rather than of Christ. For he a­lone it is, and none other, that by his diuine power worketh in the supper, & by the hands of his ministers reacheth to vs when wee doe communicate his verie bodie, and his verie blod, after an vnsearchable maner. And wher­as in reformed Churches the ministers of the Gospel doe pronounce the historie of the in­stitution of the supper with à loude voice in à knowen tongue, they doe it, not that anie virtue by that reciting shoulde passe-ouer in­to the elementes; but otherwise for à most ho­lie and profitable purpose. For they know no­thing is more comfortable to the godlie, than to heare the historie of the instituted supper which containeth the causes of the institutiō, and commendeth to them the greate loue be­tweene Christ and his Church. And therefore [Page 219] as the Papistes by mumbling with themselues the wordes of the supper commit hainous sa­criledge, by keeping close the doctrine of Gospel, the summe whereof is contained in the historie of the institution of the supper: So doe I iudge it an intollerable thing, sorelie to be punished, if anie woulde celebrate the Lord his supper without repeating the histo­rie of the same taken either out of the Euan­gelistes, or out of Paul. Here some perchance wil arise, & saie, in the celebration of the sup­per in the reformed Churches ye bread is cō ­monlie adored euen as in ye papacie. Herevnto I doe thus answere: If anie in our Churches do worship the bread and the cup, he sticketh as yet in à papistical error, from which he is to be reuoked by the godlie ministers of the Gospel. Then I distinguish betwene the wor­ship of the bread, and the reuerence towarde the maiestie of Christ, present in the supper, which reuerence we do testifie by bowing the knee, and by outward gestures of the bodie, while we are occupied in the celebration of the supper.

The which reuerence, as I iudge it laweful, and godlie, and commended to vs by the A­postle Paul: so I doe thinke the worship of the breade and of the wine, is wicked, & pro­phane, both because we haue no cōmandemēt [Page 220] to doe, without which à godlie minde can ap­point nothing in religion; and also because it is meere presumption, as that which is not cō ­tent with that vse of the sacrament, which the Lorde requireth.

The sixt.6. Reason. It is contrarie to the institution and nature of the Lorde his supper, that one seueralie by himselfe shoulde haue à banket without moe communicants. For thus doeth Paul saie,1. Cor. 11. 20 21. When ye come together into one place, this is not to eate the Lordes supper. For euerie man when they shoulde eate, taketh his owne sup­per afore. Againe, as no man can baptise him­selfe alone: So neither is it lawful for à priest to minister the Lordes supper priuatelie to himselfe alone. If then this Lordes supper be not à priuate banket, surelie in vaine do those sacrificers vaunt howe with fiue wordes they can pluck-downe the bodie of Christ from heauen vpon their altar. For ye bodie & blood of Christ is onelie in yt place, where the insti­tution of Christ is maintained, and the com­munion according to the institutiō. It is need­ful then that at the least there be one to mini­ster, and another to receaue.

The seauenth.7. Reason. By the helpe of this masse, the kingdome of Antichrist which was ere­cted by the diuel, is augmented & established. For the storehouse of al vngodlie worship­pings, whereby the kingdome of Antichrist [Page 221] is vp-holden, is the masse. Which therefore the more forceablie doeth deceaue, because it hath à forme quite contrarie to ye nature ther­of. For it seemeth goodlie, whereas nothing is more abhominable.

The eight.8. Reason. The application of the masse for the dead, yt they maie be deliuered frō purgatorie, is à meere diuelish inuention. For no man is forgiuen without he haue faith. wher­fore they most horriblie deface the glorie of Christ, which do faine that that offering doth merite that remission of sinnes for the deade. Furthermore al which depart out of this life, doe depart either in faith, or without faith. In in faith, they are blessed, according to that, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lorde. Reue. 14. 13 And Peter saith:1. Pet. 1. 9. The end of faith is the saluation of soules. But if they die without faith, the sen­tence of Christ standeth sure:Iohn 3, 36. He that belee­ueth not on the sonne, the wrath of God abideth on him. So then there is à double waie, to wit à waie of saluation, which is of the faithful; and à waie of death, or damnation, which is of al such as refuse in this worlde to beleeue on Christ. Where then is purgatorie, frō whence the soules by masses be redeemed for monie?

Notwithstanding,What the Papists do aleadge for them selues to maintain their masse. albeit the trueth touch­ing the idolatrous masse of Papistes, bee not vnknowen to the Church of God: yet the Papistes to shew that they haue some ground, [Page 222] doe obiect three thinges, as buclers for their defence. For, first they bring-out the deede of Melchizedech. Secondlie they oppose à place of Malachie touching the sacrifice to come a­mong the Gentiles, with the like. Lastlie, they doe amplifie the worthines of the people of the new Testamēt. But what force they are of, let vs brieflie consider.

The deede of Melchizedech,Against the first argu­ment of the Papistes. from whence the Papistes do seeke to haue their cause coun­tenanced, is thus described Gen. 14. And Mel­chi-zedek king of Shalem brought-foorth breade and wine, Gen. 14, 18 and hee was à Priest of the most high God. 19. Therefore he blessed him, saieng, Blessed art thou Abraham, of God most high. Hence do they most impudentlie inferre that Priestes must offer to God bread and wine for peace offe­ringes. With as good a consequent, might one make this argument. Philip is in Spaine; there­fore the sea is sweet. For first they doe corrup­lie reade He offered, for He brought-foorth and in place of the particle And they reade For. Wherby they testifie who is their master, euē the diuel, the corrupter and slanderer of gods worde. Secondlie they doe verie naughtilie distinguish the thinges which are to be com­pounded, and mingled the thinges that are to be distinguished. For there be two distinct members of the narration in Moses. The for­mer is of the king, & his deed: The latter of the [Page 223] priest, & his deed. Melchi-zedek brought-forth bread & wine; you haue the king, and his deed. And he was à Priest of the most high God, there­fore he blessed him; Where you haue the priest and his deed. Melchi-zedek therefore in brin­ging forth bread and wine, showed himselfe a liberal king, whereby he would refresh the wearied host of Abraham: And in blessing A­braham, he shewed himself a Priest. For it was the office of Priestes to blesse the people.Nom. 6, 22. 23. 24. &c. Nū ­bers 6. Thirdlie the Papistes out of the Epi­stle vnto the Hebrewes should know, yt Mel­chi-zedek was a type not of ye popish Priests, but of the sonne of God, and yt too after a cer­taine sort. Thou art, saith the father vnto ye son, à Priest for euer after the order of Melchi-zedek Nowe if they saie how they are Priestes after the maner of Melchi-zedek,Heb. 5, 5. 6. they make them­selues the successors of Christ in ye priesthood whom the holie spirit in the Epistle vnto the Hebrewes doeth testifie hath a priesthoode which shal not passe by succession vnto ano­ther;Heb. 7, 17. and who, according to the witnes of the father, shal haue no successor, but alone shal abide a Priest for euer. For so it is in the 110. Psal.Psa. 110, 4. The Lord sware and wil not repent, Thou art à Priest for euer after the order of Melchi-ze­dek. Fourthlie it is vndoubtedlie true, that the holie spirite woulde not haue pre­termitted the same, had anie mysterie, [Page 224] touching the sacrifice of breade and wine in the newe Testament lien hid in the deede of Melchi-zedek. For the holie Ghost both ex­actlie and plainelie doeth number the condi­tions wherein Melchi-zedek was likened to the sonne of God our eternal Priest. By these reasons it is apparent, howe the Papistes doe wrest the deed of Melchi-zedek verie il to e­stablish their idol. Neither doe we weie their allegation of some saienges of the fathers, who haue deliuered to the posteritie ye error which they receaued from their elders. For there is no auctoritie of man so great, but it must giue place to the worde of God. Neither is a long and erroneous custome ought else, then the auncientnes of heresie▪ Before which ye worde of God deserueth to be preferred. Theodo­ret,Theodore [...] in Cap. 8, ad Heb. whome alone I preferre before al Ecclesi­astical writers, waighing the words of the E­pistle vnto the Hebrewes, saith on this wise: If therefore both the Priesthoode which is of the lawe haue taken an ende; and the Priest which is after the order of Melchi-zedek haue offered the sacrifice, and brought it to passe that al other sacrifices shoulde be vnnecessarie, whie doe the Priestes of the newe Testament vse à mystical ly­turgie, or sacrifice? But they who are learned in di­uine matters doe know, that we doe not offer an­other sacrifice, but cal into minde that one, and wholesome sacrifice. Hitherto Theodoret. But [Page 225] the age insuing being seduced of sathan tho­rowe missevnderstanding of the wordes of the fathers, did frame the idole of the masse.

The place of Malachie which they bring­foorth to confirme their opinion is this,Mal. 1, 11. Mal. 1. In euerie place incense shal be offered vnto my Name, and à pure offering: for my Name is greate among the heathen. Of this saieng of Mala­chie, and such like, as that is of Ezechiel, Of­fer à lawful and continual sacrifice to the Lord: the Papistes doe endeuour to establish their missatical sacrifice. But euen children, who haue but tasted the beginnings of Logike wil laugh at this conclusion. For who can beare this conclusion? Beastes be in the market place: Ergo, à Chimera is there. Yea that which is yet more absurde, of a general vndiuided theie doe inferre à monster neither heard-of, nor seene afore of anie man.

The force of the Prophetes argument is this. The Prophetes doe fore-tel, how among the gentils there shalbe à sacrifice, and in al places à pure oblation. Therefore the Gen­tiles conuerted through the preaching of the Gospel shal haue sacrifices and oblations. Notwithstanding what kinde of sacrifices, & oblations they shal be, it must be learned not of men, but of God, and such as haue the testimonie of God speaking within thē. But of this we shal speake more afterwardChap. 26▪ 27. &c. when [Page 226] wee shal entreate of the sacrifices of Christi­ans.

The third thing which the Papistes obiect,Against the thirde obie­ction of Papistes is the worthines of the people of the newe Testament. To proue this dignitie the Papistes bring-out manie testimonies of the scriptures, especialie two sentences out of the former E­pistle of Peter:1. Pet. 2, 4. To whome ye come as vnto à li­uing stone, &c. yee as liuelie stones, be made à spi­ritual house, 5. and holie Priesthood, to offer-vp spi­ritual sacrifices acceptable to God by Iesus Christ. And by and by in the same chapter,9. But ye are à chosen generation, à royal Priesthood, an holie nation, à peculiar people, that ye should shew-forth the virtues of him that hath called you out of darknes into his meruelous light. By these and the like sentences the Papistes doe wel gather the worthines of the people of the newe Testa­ment; but for al that their conclusion, that therefore they ought to be massing Priestes, to offer sacrifice for the quick & dead, is naught. For Peter in this place speaketh not vnto bald Priestes, but vnto ye whole people of God, vn­to men, women, maides, old-men yong-mē, & infants, to al which he giueth ye honorable ti­tle of priestes, as they who are in ye priesthood to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Iesus Christ. If therfore al Christians be priestes, to offer acceptable sacrifices to [Page 227] God, surelie the priesthoode common to al Christians is one, and the priesthoode of papistes is another, the which is committed onelie to shauelinges to offer acceptable sa­crifices to God, without the commaunde­ment of God, yea contrarie to the manifest scriptures: Therefore when the Papistes do reason thus: The excellencie of the people of the newe testament is farre greater than of the people of the olde Testament: Ergo It is required that Christians also haue their sacrifices, and those greater than were in times passed, otherwise they were of baser condi­tion, than either the prophane people haue beene or the Iewes vnder the lawe. I graunt the dignitie is verie ample, I graunt also that the sacrifices are greater: but that the masse is the sacrifice of Christians through the prerogatiue of worthines, it can not bee pro­ued.

Seeing nowe wee haue both shewed by strong reasons the vanitie and prophanes of the Popish masse; and declared the lightnes of the bucklers, which they obiect vnto vs; it remaineth that wee shunne their impietie euen as the serpent himselfe, who was the author to our first parentes that they should tempt GOD by correcting his commaun­dement.What it is to tempt God. For to tempt God is nothing else thā by dispising his word, ordinance, & vocation, [Page 228] to seeke another thing through trust of our owne wisedome, which better pleaseth vs: which thing the Papistes haue done by inuē ­ting à masse for the quick and deade; whereby they thinke both to confirme their kingdom, and to encrease the honor of their sacrificing priestes.

CHAP. 25.
1. Of thinges indifferent.

NOwe brieflie, as we promised, let vs saie somewhat touching those thinges which maie be counted indifferent.What things are good in the papacie. For al thinges that are obserued in the papacie, are not gene­ralie wicked, so that euerie whit shoulde be auoided. Morning and Euening praiers, insti­tuted, as they cal it, for the time, doe consist of▪ Psalmes and lessons taken out of the sa­cred scriptures.A godlie man maie be at some seruice of Papistes. And therefore à godlie man dwelling among the Papistes maie be at them with à safe conscience, if so be the daunger of offence maie be shunned; and al suspicion of plaieng with both handes, auoided. For I woulde not haue à man so to flie Scylla, that he fal into Charibdis. For these two extremes are alike to be auoided, namelie papistical im­pietie, and al suspicion of Epicurisme. For he that alwaies doeth auoide the meetinges of [Page 229] men, where publike praiers bee made of the congregation, seemeth not so much to flie pa­pistical wickednes, as to folowe them which are of no religion. And therefore I woulde haue the godlie abiding among papistes som­time to be at their morning and euening prai­ers, especialie at those wherein neither inuo­cation is made of the deade; nor their little God of bread is offered to be adored, as it doth fal out at the feastes of sainctes, and at hie festi­ual daies, as they cal them, wherein the per­fume of frankēcense is blowen before images.

Now as touching the baptisme of infants,Popish Bap­tisme. the godlie are to doe two thinges. Let them both in heart reprooue the papistical toies, wherewithal Baptisme after à sort is contami­nated; and with reuerence meditate vpon the institution of Christ. Which being done, I am of opinion the godlie are excused, which either doe suffer their children to be baptised of Papistes; or otherwise doe come as witnes­ses vnto the baptisme of infants. Because som­what remaineth there yet of the institution of Christ.

Here what shal we saie of the masse,Whether à godlie man maie com­municate with papiste. wher­in distribution is made both of bread & wine? Because therein somewhat of Christ his insti­tutiō doth remain, shal it be lawful for a god­lie man instructed aright touching ye idole of the masse, to be thereat, & to cōmunicate with [Page 230] others? For if hee maie be present at the bap­tisme of the Papistes, although it bee foulie defiled with manifolde additions, because there is somwhat remaining yet of Christ his institution; why shal not the same reason be of strength, in the communion of the sup­per. This question? although it seeme verie in­tricate, yet I wil plainelie tel what I thinke therof: leauing the iudgement to the Church, that is the true Christians, especialie to such as haue felt the crosse, and liued among the pikes. First therefore I distinguish betwen the masse, and the communion in the papacie. For I thinke there is as great à difference betwene the masse, and that solemne communion cele­brated among Papistes on Easter daie, as is be­tweene heauen and hel. For in the masse there doth nothing remaine of Christ his institutiō. Wherefore as I iudge the masse abhominable, and therefore to be shunned, as an idole of Sa­tan: so I pronounce that holie which remai­neth of Christ his institutiō. For it is wicked­nes to think that so great à thing doth depend vpon the worthines of ministers. Because in­deed, the masse, & the communion or supper, be cleane contrarie actions.Popishe [...]asse one thing, and the commu­nion ano­ther. For the Popishe masse being ended, the supper of Christe be­ginneth. So that à godlie man abiding among Papistes, is bound to shun the idole of ye masse: and maie, so that both offence, & al suspitiō of [Page 231] halting be taken heed-of, be at the cōmunion, and with the elect of God, whereof manie out of doubt doe lurke in the Popedome, cōmu­nicate. What? Shal it therefore bee laweful to communicate vnder one kinde, as they cal it? Are not the laie people excluded frō the ho­lie cup of the Lordes blood? Manie of our side supposing that consecration (as they saie) is done by reciting the wordes of the institution of the supper, doe iudge it à most hainous of­fence, if anie do cōmunicate vnder one kinde. The Popish priestes also do thinke that ye laie people shal not be partakers of the Lords cup for the same cause, namelie because ye wordes be not mūbled ouer the cup, out of which the laitie are drunk-vnto. So yt they thinke ye wine is without ye presence of ye Lords blood. Now if the case did so stand, yt is, if so great à matter did depend vpon ye repetitiō of words rather thā of Christ who in his supper reacheth forth the sacrament of his bodie & blood, I woulde not haue à godlie man cōmunicate with pa­pistes. Wherfore hauing these aduersaries, it is hard to pronounce anie thing without offēce: yet wil I speake what I doe thinke.

First of al we must consider,Consecrati­on what. that to conse­crate, is not, as the Papistes thinke, and halfe-Papistes doe imagine, by the pronoun­ciation of certaine prescribed, or concea­ued wordes on magique wise to make à [Page 232] common and vnholie thing sacred and holie: but to consecrate indeed is to separate a thing from à common vse, & to applie it to an holy vse appointed to God with praise, & thanke­giuing to his name. That this is a true defini­tion thereof, he knoweth that either wil com­pare the force of the verbe Cadosh which with the Hebrews signifieth to consecrate with the old custome of consecration: or consider both the deed of Christ who instituted the supper, and the doctrin of Paul touching the blessing of the bread, and cup. Seeing then this mat­ter neither dependeth vppon the virtue of wordes, nor is hindered by the malice of men which enuie the godlie the participation of ye cup; but dependeth vppon the commaunde­ment & institution of Christ, who according to his promise wil be among the godlie that cal vpon him; and thinke vpon, and acknow­ledge the benefits of his death, and resurrecti­on: I doubt not, but the godlie in the pope­dome doe take part of the bodie and bloode, albeit the popish incantation do not defile the cup. For both he that sanctifieth is the sonne of God; and he that reacheth his bodie and bloode by the handes of the ministers is the sonne of God, whose diuine power, and infi­nit mercy neither is hindred by ye error of mē; nor broken through ye malice of enuious per­sons who suppresse the recitation of ye words [Page 233] touching the supper.

But some maie obiect: Theie which com­municate together, doe it that theie maie be one in Christ.1. Co. 10. 17 For so saith Paul: For we that are manie, are one bread, and one bodie: because we are al partakers of one bread. But the Papists who bring not faith, are without the bodie of Christ. For none is in Christ, but through faith. And therefore it seemeth howe it is vn­lawful to communicate with Papistes.A double communion at the Lords supper. I an­swere in the supper there is a double commu­nion. One is of the faithful soule & of Christ, whereof the same Apostle in that place doth speake:1. Co. 10, 16 The cup of blessing which we blesse, is it not the communion of the bloud of Christe? The bread which we breake, is it not the communion of the bodie of Christ? Of this communion theie trulie doe participate, which bring faith with them vnto the holie supper. The other, which dependeth vpon the former, is of the bre­thren communicating among themselues. This communion is not hindred either by the wickednes of the minister, or though some one Iudas or other be present. For it is à spiri­tual communion of al the godlie vnder one head, yea though theie lurke secretlie among Papistes, as doubtlesse manie doe. Notwith­standing once againe I admonish that al de­nieng of the true faith though but fained, be taken heede-of.

[Page 234] But what if one do so abhor Poperie,Whether à man not of the ministe­rie maie minister the Lordes supper in the case of necessitie, or no. yt by no meanes he dare cōmunicate in ye kingdome of ye Pope; shal not à godly housholder, who hath a virtuous wife, & à wel gouerned familie, in this case priuatelie in his owne house, prepare ye Lords supper for himselfe, & his? Some per­chāce wil saie, he maie not so do; because ye ad­ministration of the sacraments doth pertaine vnto the publike ministerie.

Of this I demande againe, whether ma­nie did not communicate in the primitiue Church, before anie ordinarie & publike mi­nisterie was instituted, and before anie tem­ples were erected to meete-together? For my part I am persuaded that the houses of manie good citizens were temples, wherein godlie housekeepers with their families did receaue the Lordes Supper together, and did streng­then one another both with doctrine & com­fort. I therfore distinguish between ye Church wel ordeined, & betwene captiuitie & banish­ment, where the godlie be persecuted. There I wil haue nothing detracted from the ministe­rie, but al things to be done according to the ordinance of ye church wel ordained: but here, that is in the captiuitie or banishment of the Church either vnder the Turke or Pope, I do thinke the godlie are blamelesse, if theie i­mitate the examples of the saintes in the pri­mitiue Church.

[Page 235] Thus we haue written in few wordes our iudgement cōcerning ye vse of the Lords sup­per in the papacie, wherein if anie man be not satisfied, I desire friendlie to be admonished. For I submit not onelie this our sentence, but also whatsoeuer at anie time I haue written, or shal write, to the censure of al the godlie, who do cleaue not so much vnto doutful opinions, as to ye manifest truth. And therfore I do frēd­lie request, yt no man would rashlie iudge, but first compare my reasons, & of the aduersaries together. Which if any do, I trust mine opiniō shal not be improued. And I besech God, euen the father of our Lord Iesus Christ, yt he wold lighten our mindes with his light; represse the futie of satan & his limes yt persecute ye sound doctrine; and keepe vs in true godlines, tho­rough and for Christ his sake, that so we maie glorifie him for euermore, Amen.

CHAP. 26.
Of the sacrifices of Christians.

CHristians also,Sacrifices of Christians. which syncerelie professe Christ, haue their sacrifices. To wit, à pro­pitiatorie;Propitiato­rie sacrifice of Christiās. & à sacrifice eucharistical: both na­med of their effects or ends. Christians haue à propitiatorie sacrifice, not to be offred of thē ­selues, but alreadie offered by Iesus Christ the most high priest & Mediator. For Christ the [Page 236] prieste hath giuen him-selfe à propitiatorie sacrifice for al men, that the father beeing ap­peased, the faithful might for euermore be sanctified through him.

Eucharistical sacrifice is euerie obedience giuen of Christians to God,Eucharisti­cal sacrifice. wherebie, as theie acknowledge God to be the fountaine, and auctor of euerie good thing: so theie testifie their thankfulnes toward him.

But that this doctrine concerning the sacri­fices of Christians knowen to the Church of God alone, maie the better be vnderstoode, & seeme the more comfortable to vs, I wil more distinctlie entreate of both kindes. For that which particularlie is distinguished, is both read with the more pleasure; and kept with more profite, as Bernard saith.

In the propitiatorie, or expiatorie sacrifice manie thinges are to be considered, which do make vnto the plainer exposition of the same. Wherfore first of al, I wil entreate of the Priest who doth offer this sacrifice. Then of the priest-hood and partes thereof. After­ward of the couenant. For euerie Priest is à suretie of some couenant. After that of the application of this sacrifice. Last of al, of the continual vse of this sacrifice in the cōscience, in life, and in death.

CHAP. 27.
1. Of the Priest which doth offer the propitiatorie sacrifice for Christians; 2. Of his nature; 3. and qualities.

IN the explication of this first member con­cerning the chiefe priest of Christians, let vs consider what need there was to haue him; of what condition he was for person; and who he was.

The necessitie of the priest maie be deemed from hence.The neede that Christi­ans had of à Priests. That al of vs are sinners, and sub­iect to eternal death, both through the defec­tion of our first parentes from God, and also through our own sinne, and guiltines, it is wel knowen: which thing, both the punishment laide vpon vs by the most righteous God; and the word of God; and euerie mans conscience doth witnes. Nowe one of these two must needs come to passe. For either we were to pe­rish euerlasting lie; or must be reconciled vnto God. But, because the reconciliation should be righteous, that the iustice of God might be satisfied, it could not be done without ma [...] à sufficient amendes to God for the iniurie he sustained. Which amendes was necessarilie to be made by some mediator. That as one A­dam did caste vs al by his owne sinne vnto death, and damnation: so there might be some [Page 238] one, who by his own merite should reconcile vs to God offended, hauing made à recōpence for the trespasse. Which Mediator betweene God offended, and men offenders, is caled à priest. For so it is in the 5. Chapter of the Epi­stle vnto the Hebrues:Heb. 5, 1. Euerie hie priest is ta­ken from among men, & is ordeined for men, in thinges pertaining to God, that he maie offer both gifts; and sacrifices for sinnes. By this it plainlie appeareth, howe necessatie à priest was, to re­concile vs vnto God who was displeased. But who could giue such à priest, whē al mankind was guiltie; & no man liuing could satisfie no not for him-selfe, much lesse for others? The most wise God brought-forth à coūsel, which man could not giue. For he was as he was mer­ciful, to take pitie vpon his creature: as he was wise, to help man least he lost the end where­vnto he was created: as he was almightie, not to suffer the diuel to exercise euerlasting ty­rannie vpon his owne image: and as he was righteous, not to let sinne go vnpunished. Therefore God vttered his most wise coun­sel wherebie he declared both his soueraigne wisedome, and his vncomprehensible mer­cie, and his infinite power, and his most ab­solute iustice. Wherefore, because the wrath of God against sinners, as we are al by nature, (for we were by nature the children of wrath, Ephes. 2, 3.) was greater than à meere man could beare; and [Page 239] because the iustice of God did require, that some one among men should be the auctor of life, as one was of death, God of his goodnes gaue such a priest, who both could, because he was God, & ought because he was a man, born of flesh & blood as al other men, notwithstā ­ding separated from sinners, that is righteous. Otherwise he had bin vnmeete for such an of­fice.Gen. 3, 15. For thus saith God: The seede of the woman shal bruise the serpents head, that is, the whole consent of the Scripture approuing the same, The eternal sonne of God shal take-vnto him selfe the humane nature, that God and man maie be one person, à mediator or à priest be­tweene God & men, who taking mans cause vpon him-self shal suffer the punishment due to mankind; & reconcile men to God, his own righteousnes being imputed to them▪ which made Augustine to saie: A more conuenient mā ­ner to heale our miserie there was none, than by the passion of Christ. For be, as the same August. saith, made our sinnes his own sinnes, that he might make his righteousnes to be ours. Therfore ye con­ditiō of ye Priest reconciling vs to God by his own merit, was to be of two kinds. One of na­tures; ye other of quality. The cōditiō of natures yt this our Priest should be both God & man, in one person, otherwise he could not be à me­diator. For as to the father by his eternal diui­nitie: so ought he to be conioined to vs by the [Page 240] societie of humane nature. The Sonne of God therefore, as Ambrose doth saie, taking our flesh vpon him became man, that the man Iesus Christ might be the Mediator betweene God and man. It was behoueful therefore that the Mediator should consist of both natures, that he might reconcile both. Of the diuine, that he might talke with God, and appeare before him: of ye humane, that he might both be a debtor, & al­so haue to offer vp to God. Whence in the E­pistle vnto the Hebrues it is thus written,Heb. 2, 14. He tooke flesh & blood, that he might destroie through death, 15. him that had power of death, that is the diuel, and that he might deliuer all them, which for feare of death were all their life time subiect to bondage. 17. Againe, In all thinges it became him to be made like vnto his brethren, that he might be merciful; and à faithful high priest in thinges con­cerning God, 18. that he might make reconciliation for the sinnes of the people. For in that he suffered, and was tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.

Hitherto concerning the conditions of the diuine and humane natures of our priest: now of the qualitie of the person, whereof the same Epistle entreateth on this wise:Heb. 7, 26. Such an highe priest it became vs to haue, which is holie, harme­lesse, vndefiled, separat from sinners, and made [...] than the heauens: 27. which needed not dailie as those hie Priestes to offer-vp sacrifice, first for his owne [Page 241] sinnes, and then for the peoples. But of this quali­tie we shal haue good occasion to speak more in the explication of the priesthod. And that Iesus the sonne of the virgin Marie is the true Messiah, yea & priest and Mediator both pro­mised and giuen to vs of God, we haue aboue In the 4. Chapter. Page. 20.declared where we opposed against ye Iewes this inuincible argument:

He alone, without al controuersie, of cer­tain truth,The Ma­ior. yea & by the confession of al men, is the true and onelie Messiah, to whome al the prophecies of the Prophetes do point; and to whom properlie, whatsoeuer by Moses, and other holie Prophetes of God hath bin fore­tolde of the Messiah, doth agree.

But the prophecies of al the Prophets doe point vnto Iesus the sonne of Marie ye virgin;The Mi­nor. & to this Iesus alone, whatsoeuer by Moses, & other holie prophetes haue bin foretolde of the Messiah,The con­clusion. doth agree: Therfore none but Ie­sus the sonne of Marie the virgine, is the true and onelie Messiah. The minor which is in controuersie we haue alreadie proued aboue, where we refuted the vanitie of ye Iewes con­cerning the Messiah. Turne vnto our note vpō 1. ver. of this Psalme against the IewesA [...]ore Chap. 4, 5. &c..

CHAP. 28.
1. Of the Priesthood of Christ; 2. The partes ther­of; 3. Of the Gospel of Christ.

[Page 242] THe priesthood of the newe Testament is à mi­nisterie ordained and appointed of God,Priesthood of the newe Testament what; where­in Iesus Christ God and man being confirmed the most hie & eternal Priest by the oath of God, doth preach, and mainteine the Gospel concerning the remission of sinnes; and through the eternal spirite offereth himselfe for à propitiatorie sacrifice, wher­by he both cleanseth sinne, and satisfieth the iustice of God for sinners; appeaseth Gods displeasure; doth merite grace and the holie Ghost for as manie as beleeue on his name; and continualie maketh in­tercession for the Church, and is heard, so that the yoke of the diuel enimie of mankinde, being shaken­of, and the image of God lost through sinne beeing repared in vs, we maie be sanctified for euermore, yea and liue blessedly, being conformable to Christ the hie Priest worlds without end.

This definition is collected, both out of yt which we haue spoken of the Priest: and also from the consent of the whole Scripture, but especialie out of the epistle vnto the Hebrues. But euerie part of this definition, as theie con­taine much store of good doctrine & comfort: so theie doe require à longer discourse.Partes of Christe his priesthood. The partes of the priesthood of Christe expressed in the definition, be three: namelie, the do­ctrine of the Gospel; Sacrifice; and praier or intercession. And euerie of these are most per­fect, & effectual, so that nothing in them is ei­ther wanting, or not sufficient for saluation.

[Page 243] For al the virtue of these partes dependeth vpon the maiestie of Christe, in whome nei­ther wisedome, nor goodnes, nor puritie, nor wil, nor power is lacking. Of these three parts therefore we wil entreate in order.

The first part is the preaching of the Gos­pel,The first parte of Christian priesthood. without which we miserable, and blinde sinners can hope for no fauour and grace from God. For without this doctrine of the Gospel we bee wrapped in miserable darkenes; and through yt greatnes,Benefite of the Gospel. number, & filthines of our sinnes, euen by ye iudgement of our own con­science condemned, as so ouer-throwen, that we must needes dispaire. For, both the lawe doth threaten the wrath to such as fulfil not the lawe (for this is the iudicial sentence of the lawe:Gal. 3, 10. Cursed is euerie man that continueth not in al thinges which are written in the booke of the lawe, Deut. 27, 26 to do them;) and our owne conscience, which is à testimonie of ye iudgemēt to come, doth accuse vs before the iudgement seate of God; and the miseries of mankinde do witnes that God is iustlie offended; and the horrible tyrannie of Satan vpon man, together with the tragical chances at al times, do proue what à detestable thing sinne is. I saie nothing of warres, nothing of the signes in heauen, in earth, and in the sea testifying the rage (to speake with the Prophete) of Gods displea­sure.

[Page 244] Al these things are but ye beginnings as it were of their miseries, which repent not at ye prea­ching of the Gospel. Al which our priest doth heale, if we like mad men with the fu­rious, and blinded world, doe not refuse his medicine. For he from the bosome of the fa­ther doth bring the moste comfortable do­ctrine of the Gospel concerning the remission of sinnes; which being pardoned, and quite abolished, neither hath the lawe in vs any thing which he may condemne; nor the diuel, nor death ouer vs anie power at al. This do­ctrine of the Gospel is called the mysterie hid from the wise of this world; 1. Cor. 1, 23. and is thought of them to be foolishnes. 24. But to the miserable and afflicted sinners it is the wisedome of God: whom it hath pleased by the foolish preaching of Christ crucified to saue such as beleeue. 27. Therfore we must shew in à worde or two what this doctrine of the Gospel is, that this part of the priesthoode of Christ maie be the more comfortable vnto vs. Christ in the 24. of Luke proponeth the sūme hereof in these wordes:Luk. 24, 27. It is behoueful that re­pentance, and remission of sinnes be preached in my Name among al nations. The Gospel what▪ Therefore the Gospel is à general preaching of the remissiō of sinnes, which theie attaine, who repent, and that through the Name, that is through the merites of Christ. And although this definition as I saie, doth contein the sūme of the matter; yet the better to con­ceaue [Page 245] the greatnes of the benefit of Christ our Priest, I wil set-downe another more at large. The Gospel is an vniuersal preaching of Christ our Priest, Another definition of the Gospel. wherein tidings is brought of deliuerance from the wrath of God; from the cursse of the lawe; and from euerlasting damnation, and remission of sinnes, saluation, and euerlasting life is proclai­med to al such as beleeue in the sonne, for his owne merites, according to the promise made in olde time to the fathers, that the glorie of God his goodnes, maie be commended euermore; and besides that such as be deliuered through Christe, maie bring forth fruites worthie the Gospel; and at the length enioie euerlasting life. This definition of the Gospel taken out of sundrie places of the scripture doth teach howe the Gospel in deede is à good and ioieful message, without which doubtlesse we should perish in euerla­sting miserie.

The partes of this definition for so much as else where we haue explicated them, I wil not anie more stand vpon them in this place. The summe of al is this: that by nature we are mi­serable, cōdemned, slaues: but by grace, which the Gospel preacheth, blessed, righteous, free, and heires of eternal life through Iesus Christ.

Christ the sonne of God himselfe brought this doctrine out of the bosome of the Father; and proposed the same to our first parentes, [Page 246] after their miserable fal into the snares of the diuel.The Gospel preached vnto Adam and Eua. For thus he saith, The seede of the woman shal bruise the head of the serpent. This he soun­ded by the ministerie of Noah before the floud.Gen. 3, 15. For Peter doth affirme,The Gospel preached in the daies of Noah. that Christe by the spirite went & preached vnto the spirites that are in prison, because of their froward rebellion against ye spirite of Christ preaching to them.1. Pet. 3, 19. This afterward he vttered by the Prophets,The Gospel preached by the Apost­les. as the same Peter doth witnesse. This after his in­carnation he preached also three yeares and an halfe. This he commanded to be blowen a­broade by his Apostles into al the worlde; [...]. Pet. 1, 19. 20. 21. which also he confirmed afterward with ma­nifolde signes.Mark. 16, 15. By his doctrine, as he hath alwaies preserued: so doth he preserue, and e­uen vntil the end of the world wil preserue the Churche against the gates of hel;Act. 2, 2. 3. &c. he wil blesse it, and giue the holie spirite, and euerla­sting life to as manie as beleeue this doctrine. But on the other side horrible damnation hangeth-ouer their heads, who giue no cre­dite to this doctrine so confirmed both with signes, and with wonders, and with mani­folde virtues, and by the holie Ghoste. For, as it is in the Epistle vnto the Hebrues, if the worde spoken by Angels, Heb. 2, 2. was stedfast, and e­uerie transgression and disobedience receaued à iust recompence of reward: 3. howe shal we escape, if we neglect so great saluation? Let vs therefore, [Page 247] as the same Epistle warneth, take heede that we 1 let it not slip.

CHAP. 29.
1. Of sacrifice, the second part of Christ his priest-hoode;

THe second part of Christ his priesthod is to offer sacrifice.Sacrifice of Christ taken diuerslie. Which sacrifice of Christ is takē somtime generalie, & somtime specialie. When it is taken generalie it comprehendeth al whatsoeuer Christe our Priest hath either done, or offered to the father for our welfare. As al his workes are perfect odedience to the lawe, voluntarie death and passion; and conti­nual intercession with the Father.

That obedience towarde the lawe is à cer­taine parte of his sacrifice,Obedience to the lawe à parte of Christ his sacrifice. it is aparent because therebie he maketh vs righteous before God. Of his passion and death the Epistle vnto the Hebrues doth entreate, when it affirmeth that Christe offered himselfe for our sinnes, and by his blood purged our consciences. His in­tercession and praiers in the 5. vnto the He­brues,Heb. 9, 14. 6 are called oblations. For thus it is writ­ten: In the daies of his flesh he did offer-vp praiers and supplications, with strong crieing and teares vnto him, that was able to saue him from death.

For these three, to wit, his perfect obedience [Page 248] of the lawe; his passion; and his intercession, mutualie by à certaine order, as effectes of their causes doe depend each of other, & con­trariwise. For in that he was holie, pure, yea & moste perfectlie righteous according to the lawe, his voluntarie obedience in the crosse was of power to purge al the sinnes of men; & because he was obedient to the father euen vnto the death of ye crosse, his praiers doe pre­uaile for the Church euerlasting lie; who ther­fore is the onelie intercessor, because he and none beside,1. Tim. 2, 6. gaue himselfe a ransome for al men, as Paul doth testifie. This consecution or ga­thering together of Christ his merites doth notablie appeare in our sanctification. For by the merite of his death, he doth so purge vs from sinne,Merite of Christ his death, and passion. that, if so be we beleeue, we doe appeare no more guiltie in the sight of the fa­ther; as Isaiah fore-tolde of him in his 53. Cha­pter: Surelie he hath borne our infirmities, & car­ried our sorrowes. Isai, 53, 45. Againe, He was wounded for our transgressions, Merite of Christ his obedience to the Lawe. he was broken for our iniquities. By the merite of his obedience to the lawe he doth cloth vs, that we maie appeare righte­ous before God, not through our owne, but throgh his righteousnes imputed vnto vs. For so doth Paule saie vnto the Romanes, Chap­ter 5. As by one mans disobedience, Rom. 5, 19. manie were made sinners: so by the obedience of one, shal manie also be made righteous.

[Page 249] Both which merites, to wit of his passion, and obedience to the lawe,Gal. 4, 4. 5. Paul comprehendeth ththese words: Christ was made vnder the law, that he might redeeme them which were vnder the law. For whereas there is à double sentence of the lawe, one of malediction and of death for not fulfilling the lawe, whereinto we doe runne through sinne: another of blessing, that is of righteousnes, and of life, from which we are fallen by sin, it was needful yt he should both take vpon himselfe the curse of the law with the cause, that is our sinnes, being made accursed; and subiect to death for our sake (For so saith Paul,Gal. 3, 13 Christe hath redeemed vs from the curse of the lawe, when hee was made à curse for vs;) and also restore the blessing of the lawe to vs, which he hath deserued for vs by his perfect obedience towarde the lawe, vnder which he was made not for his owne sake,Rom. 10, 4. but for ours. And this doeth Paul meane where he saith: Christ is the ende of the lawe for righteousnes vnto euerie one that beleeueth. And because the resurrection of Christ is à most e­uident testimonie of this fulfilling the lawe,Rom. 4, 25. Paul affirmeth howe he is risen againe for our iustification. Merite of Christ his intercession. By the merite of his praiers and intercession he hath made an entrance for vs vnto the father; as Paul saith vnto the Ro­mans,Rom. 8, 33. 34. Who shal laie anie thing vnto the charge of Gods chosen? &c. It is Christ that maketh inter­cession [Page 250] for vs. Therefore when Christ is said to offer his merites to the father, the general sacrifice of Christ, containing thistriple merit, namelie of his obedience to the law, of his pas­sion, and of his praiers, must be vnderstoode. Otherwhile ye sacrifice of Christ is morespeci­alie taken for his death & passion;Sacrifice of Christ as it is specialie vnderstood. which death & passiō is the only propitiatorie sacrifice. The figures wherof were ye sacrifices of the Iewes, & by à singular forme of speech was caled propitiatorie, because it was à shadow of this eter­nal propitiatorie sacrifice euē Iesus Christ. But because aboue,In the fourth chapter, Pa. 16. where we shewed the vanitie of the Iewes, who as yet do looke for the mes­siah, we haue spoken of shadowes, in this place we wil speake onlie of the sacrifice of Christe, which the scripture calleth expiato­rie, or propitiatorie from the effect thereof, which sacrifice may rightly be defined on this wise.

The passion of our Lord Iesus Christ the eter­nal Priest is the propitiatorie sacrifice wherein the eternal sonne of God, Propitiato­rie sacrifice of Christe what; made man, and of the father appointed an eternal Priest, by obeieng the father in suffering euen vnto the death of the crosse, offered himselfe through the eternal spirite to the eternal father vppon the altar of the crosse, sustaining the curse of the law truelie, to the end that by this one, and most perfect oblation he might satisfie the iu­stice of God for the offence, and punishment of mā ­kinde; [Page 251] pacifie the iust displeasure of God; and by this onelie sacrifice merit for al which from the creation of the world either haue beleeued, or til the ende of the same shal beleeue, euen eternal sanctification, that is deliuerance from the cursse of the lawe; grace, benediction, life, and euerla­sting saluation, that so being cōformable to Christ, theie maie praise and glorifie God for euer and e­uer. This large definition Christe in verie fewe wordes doth comprehend,Iohn 17, Iohn 17, where he saith; For their sakes sanctifie I my selfe, that theie also maie be sanctified through the truth. But the holie spirit in the Epistle vnto the Hebrewes doth verie copiouslie en­treate of this matter, and that which scatte­ringlie is spoken to this purpose in that Epi­stle, I haue gathered together as it were into one bodie, that at one sight as it were, we maie behold this wonderful worke, and after a sort esteeme the greatnes of the benefite, and be thankeful to God for this infinite mercie she­wed to vs in Christe.August. Lib 4. de Trin. Augustine saith howe in euerie sacrifice there be foure thinges to be considered,What thinges are to be consi­dered in a sacrifice. namelie who is ye offere [...]; to whō it is offered; what is offered; and for whō it is of­fered: which foure things are both expreslie & distinctlie contained in this our definition.1 Who the offerer o Propitia­torie sacri­fice. For ye sonne of God made man, & of God the father himselfe ordained an eternal priest, is ye offerer. For this priest, as he alone is holy & [Page 252] righteous, and hier than the heauens: so could he alone offer à perfect sacrifice for euermore. Because, in that he was à iust man, hee might lawfulie take vppon him the cause of vs al; e­specialie seeing one man had brought the rest of the posteritie into the state of damnation with himselfe: and in that hee was hier than the heauens, to wit, verie God, hee was of power to offer such a sacrifice, as was perfect, and effectual for euermore: againe, in that he was one person, al the deedes of his manhood are most pure, and of an infinite price.

To whome doeth this priest offer?2. To whom Christ offred himselfe. Euen to God himselfe. For to him alone the sacri­fice was due, that his iustice might be satisfied, whome our first parentes, and we in them of­fended; that the sentence of condemnation for our transgressing the lawe being vtterlie abo­lished, we might be made partakers of eter­nal blessednes through his merit.

What doeth this priest offer to God? 3. What Christ hath offered for vs. The sonne of God the eternal priest hath offered himselfe to the father vppon the altar of the crosse, taking our cause, that is our sinne, and punishment vpon himselfe. For the Epistle vnto the Hebrewes doeth witnesse, that the sonne of God was made partaker of our flesh and bloode, that he might haue that which he might offer. And Augustine doeth saie, What was more meete to bee taken of men, for their ob­lation, [Page 253] than the fleshe of man? And what so apt for this sacrifice, as mortal fleshe? And what so cleane for the sinnes of the worlde, as without al contagion flesh borne in the wombe, & out of the wombe of à virgin? And what so gratefulie could be either offered, or receaued, as the flesh of our sa­crifice,Howe the sacrfices of the olde Lawe were offered. the made bodie of our Prieste?

Furthermore, seeing euerie sacrifice in the olde lawe ought, first to be separated from o­ther things of the same kinde; secondlie to be applied to the altar, the hande of the Priest laide there-vpon; thirdlie, to be offered vpon the altar; fourthlie, being done rightlie accor­ding to the lawe, it was à sacrifice accepted of God: let vs see howe these foure thinges do aggree to our sacrifice. First therefore Christe this our sacrifice was segregated from other men not by nature, whereby he was to be ioi­ned to them, but by puritie, innocencie, and excellencie, wherin he surpassed al other men. Secondlie, he was applied to the altar being consecrated to God through his wonderful obedience. For he was offered, euen because he woulde. Thirdlie hee was offered vppon the altar, hanged on the woode of the crosse, bearing vppon his owne heade our cause, that is both sinne, and the punishment of sinne, namelie the wrath and curse of God.Leui. 16, 20. 21. Which thing was in olde time figured in the goate vpon whose heade Aaron (hauing confessed [Page 254] first his owne sinnes, and the sinnes of the people of Israel) laide his owne sinnes, and al the sinnes of the sonnes of Israel, and sent him awaie,Aarons goate à fi­gure of Christe. by the hande of a man appointed, into the wildernes. The truth of this type was ful­lie accomplished in Christe. For, as the Pro­phet saith, The Lord hath laide vpon him the in­iquitie of vs al. Isai. 53, 6. So doth Paul applie the figure to Christe,2. Cor. 5, 21. when he saith, He hath made him to be sinne for vs, which knewe no sinne, that we should be made the righteousnes of God in him. Againe,Gal. 3, 13. Christ hath redeemed vs from the cursse of the lawe, being made a cursse for vs. For it is written, Cursed is euerie one that hangeth on tree. Furthermore, as that figuratiue goate was sent into the wildernes to be torne of wilde beasts: So Christe was deliuered into the handes of the Scribees, Pharises, & people obeieng the commandementes of their prince the diuel, to be slaine for our sinnes, and bare the punish­ment due vnto them, as if it had bene his owne.The diffe­rence be­twene the goates bea­ring sinnes, and Christe his bearing sinnes. Here we must diligentlie distinguish betweene the shadowe, and the truth: The sinnes of the children of Israel were laide v­pon the goate, but in a figure onelie: but Christ indeede bare the sinnes of the whole world. Neither is here anie trope to be admit­ted. For herein our whole hope doth consist, herein the infinite loue of God, doth appeare, finalie herevpon our whole saluation doth [Page 255] depend, that our God trulie & without trope hath poured forth al his anger vpon his owne sonne, as though he had bene guiltie of al the sinnes of the world, who trulie and without trope was made a cursse, to deliuer vs trulie and without trope from the cursse. For o­therwise if the wrath of God had bene fained, the obedience of the sonne had also bene fai­ned; & the hope of glorie also which we loke for, had bene fained. Therefore Christ is to be considered with those qualities which he hath not in him selfe, but through imputation in respect of his mediatorship which voluntari­lie he tooke vpon himselfe, that we likewise after the same sort, that is through the impu­tation of those thinges which were proper to him, namelie through the satisfaction of righ­teousnes and holines, iustified, and sanctified, might be made his brethren, and heires of one & the same kingdome. Fourthlie, the sacrifice Christ so orderlie offered vpon ye altar of the crosse, did so both pacifie, and please ye father, the force therof shal euermore continue to the saluation of man.

The fourth thing which Augustine requi­reth in euerie sacrifice,4. For whō Christe was offered. is the circumstance of persons for whome it is offered. Wherevnto Paul in these wordes doth aunswere:1. Tim. 2, 6. He gaue himself à ransome for al men. Iohn 1, 29. And Iohn saith, Be­holde the lambe of God, which taketh awaie the sinnes of the world.

[Page 256] Moreouer beside these foure thinges which Augustine requireth in our sacrifice, wee haue added other foure thinges moe out of the E­pistle vnto the Hebrewes in our definition, namelie the manner of the sacrifice, the per­petual force of the same, the forme of appli­eng it, and the final ende of our knowledge and confidence in this sacrifice.Howe Christ was offered. The manner is, that Christ did offer himselfe through the eternal spirit. For so saith the Epistle vnto the Hebrewes:Heb. 9. 14. Howe much more shal the bloode of Christ, which through the eternal spirit offered himselfe without spot to God, purge your consci­ence from dead workes! By the name of the e­ternal spirit he vnderstandeth the power of the diuinitie ioined with the humanitie, the which gouerned al this sacrifice, whereof it commeth to passe, that this bloode, seeing it was the bloode of that man who also was verie God, is indued euen with the liuely vir­tue, whereby as he made vs, so he was able al­so to renue vs. In consideration hereof God is saide to haue died, and to haue purchased to himselfe à Church by his owne bloode, as Paul doeth testifie,Act. 20. 28. when he saith: Take heede vnto your selues, and to al the flocke, whereof the holie Ghost hath made you ouerseers, to feede the Church of God, which he hath purchased with his owne bloode. Hence then is that which wee ad­ded concerning the perpetual force of the sa­crifice, [Page 257] whereof the Epistle vnto ye Hebrewes doeth saie,Heb. 10, 14 With one offering hath be consecrated for euer them that are sanctified. Heb. 9, 12. So, by his owne bloode entred he once into the holie place, and ob­teined eternall redemption for vs. Of the appli­cation which is through the worde, through faith, and the sacramentes; and also of the final end of Christ his sacrifice, we wil entreateChap. 39, 40. of thi [...] first part. af­terwarde in their due places.

CHAP. 30.
1. Of diuerse things to be considered in Christ his suffering, and offering-vp himselfe vnto God the father for our sake; 2. Par­ticularly for mans miserie which made Christ to suffer.

BVT here we are to staie à while, and deep­lie to consider of diuerse weightie pointes, namelie, howe great the miserie of men was, where-into they fel through sinne; how great ye displeasure of God was against man for sin­ning; againe, how great his mercie was toward man; how vnspeakeable the obedience of the sonne of God was; how horrible the punish­ment that he suffered was; of what an inesti­mable & incomparable à price the death of ye sonne of God was, in that it coulde satisfie [Page 258] and make amendes for the sinnes of all man­kinde; and contrariwise, howe cursedlie vn­gratefull the maior part of men is, in that they will not acknowledge this wonderful worke of God, namelie the sacrifice of Christ.

First therefore it is be [...]ooueful to consider the miserie of mankinde without the sacrifice of Christ,Iob 14, 1. whereof Iob doeth saie: Man that is borne of a woman, is of short continuance, & full of trouble. Augustine defineth the miserie of man to be an abundance of troble, & a scarsitie of comfort, when à man diuerslie doth suffer, but findeth cōfort of none. Homer with an out crie affirmeth that nothing is either in greater peril, or more miserable than man is. But Ho­mer considereth onelie the calamities and mi­series, and tragical chances, wherevnto men are subiect in this life. For hee knewe neither the beginning; nor the degrees; nor the ende of mans miserie.The begin­ning or c [...]se of mans miserie.

The beginning from whence the miserie of mankinde hath sprong, and spread-forth, none knoweth, excepte hee haue learned the same out of the worde of God. This word referreth the original of all sinne vnto the di­uel; the sinne of our first parentes; and vnto the propagation of the same sinne vnto al po­steritie. Which thing Paul, Romanes 5. ex­preslie doeth teach; and Isaiah the Prophete [Page 259] doeth saie,Isai 64, 6. We al doe vade as a leafe, and our ini­quities like the winde haue taken vs away.

The degrees of mans miserie are manifold,2. The de­grees of mans mise­rie, and verie lamentable. The first whereof is à pittiful separation from God.The 1. de­gree. Your iniquities, saith the Prophete Isaiah, haue separated be­twene you and your God; Isai. 59, [...]. and your sinnes haue hid his face from you. Howe great this miserie is no man is able sufficientlie to conceaue. For what can be more wretched than to bee sepa­rated from God; than to bee excluded from the fountane of al goodnesse; from al happi­nes, and saluation?

The second degree is,The 2. de­gree. to be conioined with sathan that lier, and murtherer; and be vnder his lawes, which are of death and damnation. Through both which degrees, the temple of GOD, which by creation was dedicated to God, is prophaned; and the image of GOD, after which man was fashioned, is defa­ced.

Hence insueth the third degree of the wret­chednes of mankinde,The 3. de­gree. to wit, that man, who before was the temple of God, is nowe fallen into such miserie, that he is become the temple of sathan, wherin ye diuel is worshipped by his owne workes, namelie with lieng and mur­ther, whereof infinite heapes and swarmes of sinnes doe burst-out.

[Page 260] The fourth degree of mans miserie is the huge heape of calamities both spiritual and corporal,The 4. de­gree. wherewith mankinde is pressed­downe, as are manifolde tentations, infinite diseases, and the tragical chaunces wherevn­to mankinde is subiect. For there is no calami­tie, but man maie fal thereunto. Whereof the prouerbe commeth, A man knoweth not in the morning what maie betide him ere night. Againe, either wee are, or we haue beene, or we maie be, as this man is. Of manie examples I wil alleadge à few.Adoni-be­zek. King Adonibezek in his great pride, had the thumbes both of his handes, and of his feete cutte off, and so li­ued in extreme tormentes.Iudges 1, 6. Iezebel. The destructi­on of Iezebel is knowen to all men.2. king. 9, 32 Alcibia­des was for his nobilitie high,33. for his substance riche,Alcibiades. for his personage comelie, for the fauour of his people famous, for his supreme auctoritie honorable, for his manifold victo­ries much commended. But continued he so? Naie, hee was afterwarde condemned, bani­shed out of his countrie, put out of house and home, hated extremelie, and so at the length died desperatelie.Cepio Serui­lius, Cepio Seruilius, who in respecte both of the highnesse of his pretorshippe, of the gloriousnes of his tri­umph, of the honour of his consulshippe, & of the dignitie of an hie Priest, was most re­renowmed, [Page 261] yea and had in such price & esti­mation, that he was called the patron of the Romane Senate, liued not vntill his death in such glorie, but had à verie misera­ble ende. For he was throwen into prison, and deliuered to an hangmā to be tormented, who with his cruel handes tare in peeces the heart of Cepio plucked from out his bodie, and hung it vpon à ladder to the horror of al the Romane people.Belisarius. Belisarius the chiefe capi­tane vnder Iustinian the Emperor, after manie famous victories which he had atchieued, was through enuie ouerthrowen, spoiled of his goodes, bereft of his eies, and constrained dai­lie to beg his bread in the temple Sophie, v­sing this speech to such as passed-by, Apeece of bread giue to Belisarius, whome vertue ad­uanced, enuie hath ouerthrowen. What should I speake of that proude Herod who glitered in his gold,Herod. & iewels, and kinglie robes? was he not filled afterward with vermine insteed of iewels, which he feede with his owne flesh, vntil what through his owne stinch, and tor­mentes, he desperatlie dispatched him selfe? I saie nothing of great Alexander, of Caesar, of Marius, Pompeius, Cato, Cicero, and of manie moe, whose wretched endes doe shew, howe wretched the condition of mankinde is: from which none is sure to escape, while hee liueth in this worlde. And therefore wiselie [Page 262] did Seneca counsel,The 5. de­gree, when he saide, Let no man trust too much to prosperitie.

The fifth degree of mans miserie is the gil­tines of conscience,Of this reade more aboue Chap. 11. vpon the first verse of this Psalme. which more doth vexe the soule than anie hangman is able to tor­ment the bodie. This although it seeme for à time to sleepe: yet, as Plato saith, before death it wil be wakened.

The sixt degree of the miserie of man­kindeis,The 6. de­gree. euen death it selfe ioined with despe­ration, the which is most miserable to such as knowe not Christ, and à certaine entrance vn­to euerlasting damnation.

But what is the ende of those men which confesse not Christ?3. The ende of the mise­rie of man­kinde. The ende, as I maie saie, is infinite, permanent, subiect to no change or alteration. For after death, and after the last iudgement,The finall reward of sinne. there ensueth the woful knitting vp of this miserie, to wit, endlesse shame, per­petual griefe of conscience both in soule and bodie, fellowship with vncleane spirites in obscure flames of fire, in vtter darkenes, with­out al light of God.

Of the shame Daniel speaketh, when he saith, Some, Dan. 12, 2. to wit, the wicked, shal awake, to shame and perpetual contempt. Of the euerlasting torment, and griefe with vncleane spirites, the Lorde in the 25. chapter of Matthewe, proponing the iudiciarie sentence, doeth saie, [Page 262] Depart from me yee curssed into euerlasting fire, Mat. 5, 241. which is prepared for the Diuel, and his An­gels. Isai. 66, 24. Touching the griefe of conscience, Isai­ah speaketh in these wordes, And their worme shal not die. And although by reason of sinne all mankinde is throwne into this so great miserie: yet the Church alone escapeth them all. For as her sinne, which is the cause of these miseries, is purged through the death of Christ: So the holie spirite the comforter is present in the crosse, and the death of the bodie is the entrance vnto euerlasting felici­tie.Psal. 116. Wherefore the death of sainctes is called pretious in the sight of the Lord. 15.

CHAP. 31.
1. The great displeasure of God against man for sin­ning.

OF the greatnesse, and manifoldenesse of the miserie of mankinde, maie bee ga­thered after à sort the greatenes of Gods displeasure againste impenitent persons. For seeing GOD is righteous,Rom. 2, 2. and his iudgee, ment is according to trueth, as Paule saith, [Page 264] it followeth of necessitie that the wrath and reuengment in God, do answere to his iustice: that is, that the punishment be not greater thā was the sinne. But nowe the punishment is most grieuous, and without ende: And there­fore it must of necessitie followe that the of­fence is infinite, as that whereby the infinite God is displeased. Wherefore the quantitie of sinne must not be wayed in false balance, but must be leuied by true scales. For in sinne manie things doe concur, for the which God is iustlie offended: As the contempt of Gods maiestie; proude contempt against the lawe of God; à shamefull defiling of Gods image according to which man was made; imitation of sathan the enimie of God; treason against his maiestie; apostasie from the armie of God; and as it were à conspiracie with the diuel; in­tolerable ingratitude, & foule forgetfulnes of God his benefites towardes mankinde. For there was neuer à sinne alone, but alwaies it draweth à whole chaine of sinnes therewith­all. As wee maie see in the fall of our firste parentes, and of others which witting and willinglie doe rushe against the commaunde­ments of God. Of this due waieng of sin many things do follow. First, that God doth iustlie in punishing sinne with euerlasting miserie in them which turne not vnto GOD through faith in Iesus Christ.

[Page 265] Secondly, that they deride the iustice of God, and his iust displeasure, who teach men, that by contrition, confession, and satisfaction, the forgiuenesse of sinnes, is merited before the iudgement seate of God. I say nothing of them, who thinke some sins are of so smal im­portance, yt by a little holie water they may be washed-away. I omit them in like sort, who dream that by the Popes pardons, & by Mas­ses sinnes be redeemed, by which toies the Popes kingdome is encreased, vpholden, and preserued both to the great dishonor of God, and the most certaine destruction of infinite soules. Thirdlie, of the due waying of sinne, this also followeth, yt no pure creature could satisfie the iustice of God, make amendes for the offence, and restore man to his former happinesse, where-from he did fall through sin. And therfore Christ was faine in the flesh to take our cause vpon him selfe, and to satis­fie the iustice of God. And although this wrath of God, as we haue shewed, be infinite: yet is it tempered with mercie, as the Prophet Habakuk doth saie. In wrath remember mer­cie: Hab. 3. 2. And Theodoret, It is the propertie of God, by the temperature of mercie to mitigate his iu­stice. But of this mercie we are nowe to speake.

CHAP. 32.
1. The great mercie of God toward miserable man; 2. Where-unto it may fitlie be compared.

AFter the due examination both of mans miserie, and of the wrath of God against wickednes, the infinite mercie of God, which is the foundation of our turning vnto him, is to be caled into minde.

God is saide to be merciful,Howe God i [...] mercifull. not because he is subiect to perturbations, and griefe of mind, as man is; but for that of his meere goodnes & loue,Whence the mercie of God doth spring. he helpeth mans miserie. For the mercie of God issueth out of loue; and loue from the likenes which man hath with God, being for­med according to his image and similitude.

This mercie of God toward man,Mercie of God where­vnto com­pared in Scripture. is diuers­lie painted-out in the Scriptures; and the force thereof is commended to vs by sundrie com­parisons. First it is compared to the kindnesse of à mother towarde her tender babe. For so saith Isaiah:Isai. 49, 15. Can à woman forget her childe, and not haue compassion on the sonne of her wombe? Though she should forget, yet will not I forget thee. And in the 103. Psalme, it is likened to the na­tural kindenesse of à Father. As à father, it is [Page 267] there saide,Psal. 103, 1 [...] hath compassion on his children: so hath the Lorde compassion on them that feare him. Of this naturall affection of parentes to­ward their children, the worde Mercie in the Hebrue tongue is deriued. And therefore Za­charie saide Through the tender mercie, Luk. 1, 78. there­bie to expresse the force of the Hebrue worde, and the affection of God taking pitie. Se­condly, this mercie of God is compared by I­saiah to mountaines, and valeies, where he sai­eth:Isai. 54, 10. The mountaines shal remoue, and the hils shal fal downe: but my mercie shal not depart from thee, neither shal the couenant of my peace fall a­waie, saith the Lorde that hath compassion vpon thee. Thirdlie, it is likened to the largenesse of the earthe, as in the Psalme, The earth is ful of the goodnes of the Lord. Fourthlie, it is like­ned to the hie heauens in the 103. Psalme,Psal. 103, 11. As hie as the heauen is aboue the earth, so great is his mercie toward them that feare him. Fiftlie, it is compared to the ornament of à Kings throne;Isai. 16, 5. In mercie shal the throne be prepared, and he shal sit vpon it in stedfastnesse. Sixtlie, it is compared to à cloude of raine in the time of drought, Eccles. 35. Oh, how faire à thing is the mercie of God in the time of anguish and trouble! Eccl. 35▪ 19. It is like à cloude of raine, that commeth in the time of drought. Seuenthlie, it is compared to à buckler, or weapon of warre, Psalme 103. [Page 268] Who redeemeth thy life from the graue, [...]. 103, 4▪ and crow­neth thee with mercie and compassions, that is compasseth on all sides. And Psalme 5. Thou with fauour wilt compasse him, as with a shielde. Eightly, it is preferred before life it selfe, than the which nothing is deemed better, or swee­ter,Psa. 63, 3. Psal. 63. Thy louing kindnesse is better than life. Ninthlie, it is preferred aboue all other workes of God, Psalme. 145. The Lord is good to all, Psal. 145, 9 and his mercies are ouer all his workes. Last of all it is compared euen to the maiestie of God himselfe. For so saith Ecclesiasticus: As his greatnes is; Eccles. 2, 21 so is his mercie. As if he should say, In God there is souereign maiestie linked with souereigne mercie, by the one whereof he hath power to do what he list, by the other he hath will to preserue his chosen.

And although God by manie argumentes commendeth his mercie vnto vs: yet the chiefest is,Iohn. 3, 16. that he gaue his sonne. Iohn 3. God so loued the world, that he hath giuen his onely be­gotten sonne, that who so euer beleeueth in him, should not perish, Rom. 5, 8. but haue euerlasting life. Rom. 5. God setteth-out his loue toward vs, seeing that while we were yet sinners, Rom. 8, 32. That is, not conuerted vnto God, Christe died for vs. Rom. 8. God spa­red not his owne Sonne, but gaue him for vs al. To be briefe: No creature is able sufficiently to commend this mercie of God flowing out of entire goodnes, and loue. The wisedome of [Page 269] the world is not touched with mercy toward the transgressors, but toward the vnfortunate, and such as do seeme vniustly to be afflicted. For so saith Cicero: They are to be pitied, who are in miserie for fortune, not for their offences. But the wisedome of God doth helpe trans­gressors, and the greatest sinners, if so be they repent. For grace proceeding from mercie a­boundeth ouer sinne. And Augustine doth say: Greater is God his mercie, than the miserie of all sinners. So that Dauid not without cause do­eth adhorte vs to praise God for this his infi­nie mercie.Psal. 117, 1 2. Al nations, saith he, Praise ye the Lorde: all yee people praise him. For his louing kindnes is great towarde vs, and the trueth of the Lorde endureth for euer.

But here some maie well obiect and saie, the mercie of God in deede is great, but for al that it hath an impossible condition annexed. For so saith the Lord himselfe, who cannot lie, I will shewe mercy vnto thousandes to them that loue me, Exod. [...], 6. and keepe my commandements. This pro­mise of God without Christe is plainlie to none effect, because a condition of impossibi­litie is added therevnto. For no man by his owne strength can fulfil the commandements of God, notwithstanding in Christe it is pos­sible, and effectual vnto a thousand generati­ons of Christ, that is, to al who are borne the sonnes of God in Christ.Rom. 10, 4. For, as he is the ende [Page 270] of the lawe for righteousnesse vnto euerie one tha [...] beleeueth: 2. Cor. 1, [...]0. so al the promises of God in him are yea and Amen, as Paule saith. Hitherto belon­geth that in Exodus:Exod. 34, 6 7. The Lord, the Lord God is mercifull, and gratious, and aboundant in goodnes, and trueth, who reserueth mercie for thousandes, forgiuing iniquitie, & transgression, & sinne. Nei­ther maie it be douted, yt God, when he made this promise, did signifie howe both Christe should be the fulfiller of the lawe, and that al which desire the mercie promised, must runne vnto Christ; that, as they should finde the lawe fulfilled in him: so they should be made partakers of the promised mercie. And there­fore this promise of mercie hath one conditiō fro the law without Christ, to wit touching ye fulfilling of ye law; & another in Christ, name lie of faith, wherbie the end of the law, which is righteousnes, is obteined. So that as manie as beleue, haue righteousnes, which is as much as ye law requireth. Wherof the promise of mer­cie is ratified and confirmed to them; and this is that couenant,Psal. 25, 10 whereof the 25. Psalme doth speake. Al the pathes of the Lorde are mercie, and truth vnto such as kepe his couenant, and his testimonies, that is, as another Psalme doth ex­pound it,Psal, 32, 10 Mercie shal compasse him that tru­steth in the Lord.

The mercie then of GOD is modera­ted according vnto the rule of iustice, when it [Page 271] is exhibited to such as repent. For this iustice of God is à perpetual rule; that as he wil con­demne such as be rebellious without al pitie and mercie: so he wil of his infinite mercie, saue as manie as turne vnto the Lord. This rule of God his iustice is to be thought vpon, when we reade in the Psalmes, that Dauid praied God, that he would heare him, for his righte­ousnes▪ [...] For three thinges together came into his minde, namelie the promise of mer­cie; the free pardon of his sinnes; and the price, wherebie the iustice of God is satisfied, namelie by the sacrifice of his Sonne, (for he is vniust, that hauing receiued à raunsome, wil not set free the captiue) and by the merite of Christ, wherebie we are iustified before God, being conuerted vnto him through faith.

Whence it is, that if he should not heare them which repent, and forgiue their offen­ces, he should be vniust, as one that dealeth a­gainst the rule of his own iustice; that denieth his promise; that would accept no ransome; nor regarde the righteousnes of his sonne, wherebie he did merite fauour for vs. So that Dauid after his adulterie, murder, and be­traieng the hoste of God, did craue mer­cie, and remission of his sinnes through faith; and among other reasons, brought this in for one:

[Page 272] That thou maiest be iust when thou speakest, Psal. 51. 4. that is that men maie confesse thee iust for kee­ping thy wordes, whereby thou promisedst pardon to as many as repent.

CHAP. 33.
1. Of Christe his wonderful obedience to his Fa­ther for our saluation; 2. The fruite thereof.

NExt vnto the mercie of God, we are to consider the wonderfull obedience of Christ, which would vouchsafe to take our cause vpon himselfe; and feele the wrath of God, to deliuer vs from eternall death. Of this obedience Paule vnto the Philippians on this wise:Phil. 2, 6. 7. Who being in the forme of God, thought it no roberie to be equal with God: but he made himselfe of no reputation, and tooke on him-selfe the form of à seruant, & was made like vnto men, & was found in shape as à man. He humbled him selfe, & became obedient vnto the death, euen the death of the crosse. Here Paul entreateth of the vnspeakeable obedience of the sonne of God; and because equals cannot properly be said to obey one another, but inferiors their betters: Paule sheweth, howe the sonne beeing of one essence and power with the Father, did hum­ble him selfe, taking to himselfe the nature of [Page 273] man, wherein he became obedient to the Fa­ther, euen vnto the death of the crosse. And in the 10. Chapter of the Epistle vnto the He­brues out of the 40. Psalme:Heb. 10, 4. Because it is vn­possible, that the bloud of Buls, and Goates should take away sinnes. 5 Wherefore when he commeth in­to the world, 6. he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not: but à bodie thou hast ordeined me. In burnt offeringes, and sinne offeringes thou hast had no pleasure. 7. Then I saide, Loe I come (In the beginning of the Booke it is written of me) that I should do thy will, O God. Isaiah 53. He was offe­red, euen because he would.

But with this obedience how agreeth that prayer thrice repeated in the garden:How Christ was vnwil­ling to die. O my Fa­ther, if it be possible, let this cup passe fro me; ne­uerthelesse not as I wil, Matth. 26. but as thou wilt? 39. This prai­er seemeth to import that the wil of the sonne differed,42. yea and was contrarie also to the Fa­thers wil.44. For the Fathers wil was that he should drinke of the cup, which he had pre­pared: And the sonne desireth that the same cup, if it were possible, might passeawaie. This obiection is aunswered by the wordes of our Lord afterward in the same Chapter vttered: The spirit in deed is willing, 41. but the flesh is weake. So that what he would not through ye weak­nesse of the flesh, the which naturalie, & with­out offence dreadeth death; the same he wold through the willingnesse of the spirite, wher­bie [Page 274] he was obedient to the Father. And thus doth Cyril also distinguish the same, when he saith: That the passion of the Crosse was not vo­luntarie to Christ, and againe was voluntarie for the fathers wil, and for our saluation, you maie ea­silie perceiue by this praier, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup passe from me. For as the word of God is God, and naturalie the verie life, no man wil saie that anie waie he feared death: but beeing made flesh, he permitteth fleshe, to suffer that which belongeth to flesh, and therefore as verie man he dreadeth death standing at the dores.

Here an other question doth arise, what obtained Christ by his praieng? The Epistle vnto the Hebrewes maketh answere, He was hearde in that which he feared, for the paines of death being remoued awaie, he ouercame those conflictes.

The fruite of this wonderful obedience of the sonne of God, Fruite of Christ his obedience. is our iustificatton, and sal­uation. As by one mans disobedience, saith Paul, manie were made sinners:Rom. 5, 19. so by the obedience of one, shal manie be made righteous. The Apostle highlie extolling this obedience, doth saie, Christ,6. when we were yet of no strength, at his time died for the vngodlie.7. Doubtlesse one wil scarse die for a righteous man: but yet for a good man it maie be that one dare die.

But no tongue can vtter, nor minde conceaue [Page 275] howe greate the obedience of the sonne of God was, who deriued the wrath of God v­pon himselfe, and put himselfe into our place, to suffer the paines due vnto vs for our saluation.Gal. 3, 13. Christ hath redeemed vs from the cursse of the lawe▪ when he was made a cursse for vs. 2. Cor. 5, 21. Againe, He hath made him to be sinne for vs, which knew no sinne, that we should be made the righteousnes of God in him.

CHAP. 34.
1. The greeuousnes of the paines which Christ en­dured, for our sakes; 2. What theie signified.

WIth this obedience would be considered both the greeuousnes of the pain, which the sonne of God endured for our sakes, both in minde, and in bodie; and also the reproche against his person.

The griefe of minde Christe doth testifie,Christ his suffering in minde. when he saith; My soule is heauie, euen vnto the death, Mat. 26, 3 [...]. that is the greefe of minde which I suf­fer, is more grieuous vnto me than death it selfe. Of this great sorrowe of minde that Psalme is to be vnderstood, where in the per­son of Christ it is said:Psal. 18, 5▪ The sorrowes of the graue haue compassed me about, the snares of death haue ouer-tooke me.

By the sorrowes of the graue he meaneth, [Page 276] deadlie sorrowes, such as euen kil à man wel-nigh, and thrust him downe to the graue. Of this anguish of mind in Christ, I wil cite some testimonies out of the Gospell.Mar. 14, 53 Marke saith, He began to be afraid, and in great heauines. And Luke sheweth by an euident signe, how he was perplexed in minde, when for verie sorrowe he sweat bloud againe: for thus he saith: Being in an agonie, Luk. 23, 44. he prayed most earnestlie, and his sweat was like drops of bloud, trickling downe the ground. For it was meete, that as his death was more bitter then any death, according to bodi­lie sense: so the feare in his mind was most bit­ter of al other paine. And as the infinite loue made the sense of death nothing the milder: so did it mitigate nothing of the bit­ternes of the feare, which was so great, that it stoode in neede of comfort, euen of the verie Angels.Luk. 22, 43. For, as Luke doth say, there appeared an Angel vnto him from heauen comforting him. For ye diuinitie shewed not it selfe, that Christ trulie might feele the waight of the burden laide vpon him, and be in anguish through the sense of Gods displeasure against our, not his sinne, which notwithstanding he made his, by taking our cause vpon himselfe. And Ire­naeus doth saie, As he was man to be tempted: so was he the worde, to be glori [...]ied. And the worde in deede rested while he was tempted, crucified, and put to death; but was assistant to the flesh when he [Page 277] ouercame, susteined, rose againe, and ascended into the heauens.

But, for asmuch as it seemeth vnworthie the diuine maiestie of Christ, that our Sauiour should be stroken with such feare, and sorow, many interpreters here doe seeke refuges, and faigne tropes and figures, wherebie theie la­bor to soften the narrations of the Euangelists and the fore-saiengs of Dauid & Isaiah; where­of the one saith, Psal. 18, 5. He was compassed about with the sorrowes of the graue: and the other, that he truely bare our infirmities.Isai. 53, 4. But let the worde of God be our light. For if wee be ashamed of Christ his feare, and sorrow, our redemption shal vade, and come to naught. But Ambose writing vpon this place of Luke, Luk. 22, 42. Father, if thou wilt, take-awaie this cup fro me, sheweth the va­nitie of those interpreters which doe seeke tropes. For thus he saith: Here manie doe sticke, which doe turne the sadnes of our Sauiour rather vnto an argument of an olde infirmitie from the beginning, than to à weakenes taken vpon him for à time, and they desire to wrest the sense of the natural sentence. But for my part, I doe not onely thinke him not to be excused, but also no-where doe more wonder at his goodnes, and maiestie. For vn­lesse he had taken vpon him mine affection, his be­nefite towardes me had not ben so great. Therfore for my sake he sorrowed, who had no cause to sor­rowe for his owne sake; and the comfort of the e­ternal [Page 278] Godhead being sequestred, he is vexed with the greefe of mine infirmitie. For he tooke my sorrowe vpon himselfe, that he might bestowe his owne ioie vpon me; and by our steps hee descended euen vnto the pangues of death, to cal vs backe by his footing vnto life. Then I do boldly name sadnes, because I commend the crosse. Neither tooke he à shewe of incarnation, but the verie trueth. Therefore he was to take the griefe, that he might ouercome, not exclude sadnes. Neither haue thei [...] the praise of fortitude, who haue suffred the sense­lessenes rather thā the sorrowe of woūds. Hither­to Ambrose. So that the cause of the anguish, and great sorrowe in Christe his minde, was the sense of the sinnes of all men in his minde, whereof he had made himselfe guiltie, beeing forth-with to be betraied into the handes of his enimies.

Beside this anguish of minde,Christe his suffering in bodie. both his bo­die was moste greeuouslie afflicted, and his person most shamefullie reproched. His bo­die was with spitle defiled; with cuffes buffe­ted; with whipping rented; with beatinges punished; with thornes crowned; and with à most ignominious death executed. In his person he suffered reproches,What [...] a­gainst his [...]rson suf­ [...]. scoffinges floutinges. And albeit his diuinitie could not suffer: yet the reproch redounded against it, for so much as it was personalie vnited to [Page 279] the manhoode.

These most greeuous paines,The paines of Christ to­kens where­of. namely an­guish of minde, tormentes of bodie, and re­proches against the person of Christe; are to­kens, first of the iustice, the which by this punishment for the sinns of the whole world, is satisfied: secondarilie, of Gods mercie, who of heartie loue gaue his owne sonne into these paines for our sake, that al mankinde, which he had created after his owne image, might not perish: thirdlie both of the obedience of Christe towarde the Father, and also of his loue toward vs, to whō he chose to be linked in the likenesse of mans nature, that he might susteine these paines for man, the which we shall finde to be most comfortable to vs, and profitable, when we depend vpon him by à liuelie faith.

CHAP. 35.
1. Of howe inestimable à price the death of Christ is; 2. How he could suffer; 3. In what respects, the price is infinite.

OF what an inestimable à price the death of Christ is, ought diligentlie to be wai­ed. For from hence remedies againste al [Page 280] the woundes which sinne doth▪ doth afflict vs with al, are to be fetcht. And therefore saith Augustine, Beholde the woundes of him that hangeth, the bloud of him that dieth, the price of him that redeemeth. His head hangeth-downe to kisse; his armes be stretched to imbrace; his bodie lieth open to redeeme. The greatnes hereof consi­der with your selues; these thinges looke you doe weigh in the balance of your heart, that he maie wholie be fixed in your heart, who for your sakes was wholie fastened to the crosse. Paule vnto the Romanes compareth Adam and Christ toge­ther.Rom. 5, 18. By Adam, he saith, sinne came on all men to condemnation: but by Christ grace came vpon all men to the iustification of life. If by the offence of one, 17. saith he, death reigned through one; much more shal theie which receiue the aboundance of grace, and of the gifte of righteousnes, raigne in life through one, euen Iesus Christ. The cause then why the obedience & death of Christ, is of so inestimable à price, is because the man that suffered, was the only begotten sonne of God, and verie God too. For of that singular, vn­speakable, and reuerend vnion of the diuine and humane nature together, whereby God and man is one Christ, or one person, is the dignitie, price, estimation, and infinite merite of all the actions, and passions of Christ. And therefore rightly doth ye Church saie: He is the verie lambe of God, who hath taken awaie the [Page 281] sinnes of the worlde, who by his death hath destroi­ed death, and repaired life by rising againe. And Ambrose: So great was our sinne, that vnlesse the sonne of God had died for vs the debters of death, wee coulde neuer haue beene saued. Wherefore when it is said, that the sonne of man hath re­deemed vs through the merite of his passi­on, à worke of an infinite price and va­lor is named, to wit, the worke of the Sonne of man, who is verie God too: when it is said howe the death of Christ is à satisfaction, an infinite price is proposed, euen of that man, who also is the onelie begotten Sonne of God.

And although the God-head neither suf­fered,Howe Christ could suffer. nor died: (for howe can it bee that ei­ther an vnchangeable thing shoulde suffer, or an immortall thing suffer death!) yet the e­ternal person, which is God, hath suffered, yet not in the diuine, but in the humane as­sumed nature which coulde suffer.Act. 20, 28. Therefore Paul doeth saie, God hath purchased the Church with his owne blood. 1. Pet. 4. 1. And Peter affirmeth how Christ hath suffered in the fleshe, that is in the humane nature, in soule, and bodie. And the Epistle vnto the Hebrewes doeth saie that Christ tooke part of bloode and flesh, Heb. 2, 14. that he might destroye through death him, that had the power of death, that is the diuel, signifying plainlie there­by howe the diuinitie coulde not suffer, but [Page 282] flesh did: and because the diuine nature could not suffer, he tooke yt which could suffer. And Theodoret doth saie:Whie the price of Christe his suffering is infinite and inestima­ble. He therfore tooke flesh, that through it which coulde suffer, that which could not suffer might sustaine punishment.

Therefore in respect of the vnion of the diuine and humaine nature in one person, the price and merite of Christ his suffering is in­finite, for time, valor and efficacie. For if you respect the time, it extendeth vnto all ages, vnto all generations of men: If you marke the valor, it is able to purge the sinnes of all mankinde: if the efficacie, the force thereof is euident, in al, and with-drawen from none which doe heare the gospel, and by faith re­pent. For the death of Christ doeth abolishe alike the sinnes of Adam, and of Euah, and of Peter, and of Paul, and of such as haue bene since the time of Christ. And this is it which is saide in the Reuelation, where hee is called, The lambe which was slaine from the beginning of the worlde. Reuel. 13, 8. As sone therefore as our first pa­rentes gaue credite to this promise,Gen. 3, 15. The seed of the woman shal bruise the serpentes heade, by the power of Christ his death, which was then appointed to be in the ende of the world, they were iustified, sanctified, and redeemed from eternal death. By this faith Iob erected himselfe in the extreeme miseries, when hee saide,I [...]b. 19, 25. I am sure that my redeemer liueth. And [Page 283] of Abram it is written,Gen. 15, 6. Abram beleeued the Lorde, and hee counted that to him for righ­teousnesse. And Dauid was persuaded his adul­terie and murder coulde be washed awaie by the merite of Christe his bloode, when hee saide,Psal. 51, 7. Purge me with Hysop, and I shall be cleane. And therefore in an other place he saith, With the Lorde is mercie, and with him is great re­deemption. It is great in deede, because it is in­finite, and can not bee conteined within the bounds of anie time, or estimation. So that the vertue of Christ his death extendeth vn­to all times, and to al ages, and is of sufficient force to wipe al the sinnes of al mankinde. Because it is the death not of à simple man, but of that man who also was the onelie be­gotten Sonne of God, and à verie God too, deliuered vnto death for our sakes; as Paule doth saie:Rom. 8, 32. Hee spared not his owne sonne, but gaue him for vs all to death.

CHAP. 36.
1. The horrible ingratitude of man toward God for the so infinite price of his redemption. 2. The causes of mans ingra­titude, with remedies for them.

[Page 284] THus howesoeuer wee see both of what price the death of the sonne of God is; and also for whō Christ the Lorde of glorie hath suffered: nowe on the otherside let vs consi­der, howe, alas, vngratefull the maior part of mankinde is for the same. For the Iewes, Turkes, and manie prophane people, can not abide so much as to heare the name of Christ. For the Iewes blinded with enuie, couetous­nes, and ambition, doe interprete the benefite of Christ to be their hurt. The Turkes pos­sessed with Mahomets furie like mad men are carried tyrannicallie to abolishe the name of Christ. Manie barbarous nations with the auncientnes of error, as it were with a leprosie polluted, will not permit the gospel to bee founded. Others vnder the name of Christe and pretence of religion to fight vnder the ensigne of satan, and endeuour by the blood of saincts to hinder the course of the gospel, as doth the Pope, the Cardinals, the mitred Bishoppes, Abbats, and al the rablement of ye Antichristian kingdome. Manie are altoge­ther indifferent, looking for the euent, that they rise-vp to that part which hath the bet­ter hand. Who although they becounted gos­pellers, and called defenders of the faith: yet in trueth they bee meere Atheistes, such as measure the felicitie of man by honor, aucto­ritie, wealth, and pleasure. Among these al­though [Page 285] some do couer the prophanenesse of their minde by à certaine outwarde ciuilitie [...] yet the most part doe imitate Nero and Heli­ogabalus more truelie thā Christ, of whō they haue their name. Of this extreeme ingratitude of the world, the Lord by the Prophete Isai­ah, complaineth on this wise:Isai, 1, 2. I haue nourished and brought vp children, but they haue rebelled against me. The oxe knoweth his owner, and the asse his masters crib, 3. but Israel hath not knowen, my people hath not vnderstande. This ingrati­tude also the Lord bewayleth, when he saith, Howe often woulde I haue gathered thy children together, Mat. 23. 27▪ as the henne gathereth her chickins vn­der her winges, and yee would not? Againe, where hee saith:Mat. 20, 1▪ Manie are called, but few are choosen. By which saying the Lorde both commen­deth the infinite mercie of God inuiting all men vnto the knowledge of his sonne, that by him they maie be saued; and reprooueth the intollerable blindnes and ingratitude of verie manie men, who as if they were mad, laie violent hande vppon the Phisition that woulde heale, and set vpon him as if hee were an enemie rendring for life and celestial pro­motion offered death, and euil wordes. This ingratitude is by so much the greater, as the benefite is greater that is contemned. So that it is worthie the euerlasting hatred of all the chaste Angels, and electe of God. If you [Page 286] respect ye heaps of wicked men, smal is the nū ­ber of them which esteeme the benefites of Christ, as they ought. Who, I beseech you can sufficientlie bewaile with teares this phrensie of mē? But of force it must be some detestable euil thing which can with-draw man formed after the image of God, from so great good vnto such euil; from life vnto death; from à friende to an enimie; vnto à traitor from à sa­uiour; vnto damnation from saluation; brieflie frō God the fountain of al goodnes, righteous­nes, life, saluation, happines, and honor, vnto the diuel the auctor of al wickednesse, vnrigh­teousnesse, death, damnation, and perpetuall infamie. But this euil which indeede is ma­nifolde, the blinded man perceaueth not. And although sometime as it were through à case­ment it beholdeth à certaine shadowe there­of: yet by and by it forgettes the same, as he who hath seene his face in à glasse. Which thing doubtlesse is greatlie to bee lamented. For the first steepe vnto health, as they saie, is to knowe the sickenesse. For the knowledg of the disease stirreth such as loue their health to seeke à Phisition. Let vs therefore, as the skilfull Phisitions doe in healing diseases, seeke-out the causes of so great euill, that knowing them, both a Physition maie bee sought, and remedie maie be applied to heale the same. Wee then wil search-out the causes [Page 287] of mans vsual ingratitude; and contrariwise oppose medicines for this common euil, that so by comparing them together, the contrarie causes of contrarie effectes maie the better both bee knowen,Ephe. 2, 2. and discerned. Paul wri­ting vnto the Ephesians doeth recite sixe causes aswell of this euil,3. as of all other wic­kednesse raigning in the world, which in or­der wee wil declare.

The first cause is that which he calleth the fleshe;1. cause of mās ingra­titude. that is, the wickednes of the corrup­ted nature in men, after the fal of Adam. This wickednes is like à filthie fountain from which pestilent vapors doe issue,Fall of A­dam▪ whereby all the cogitations, al the counsels, and actions of man are infected, and corrupted as it were with deadlie poison. And although this fountaine can not wholie bee stopped, but oftentimes it wil breake out: yet the course thereof as much as maie be is to be repressed, which is done after thiswise.Aremedie far this cause. The Gospel of Christ must be harkened vnto, which when we beleeue, we are endued with the holie Ghost,Io [...]n 4, 14. which is à newe spring in the heart of man, from whence floweth pure water sprin­ging vnto euerlasting life. For frō this new foū ­tan, wherby ye course of ye filthie spring which we haue throgh ye corruptiō of nature is stop­ped, do issue godlie cogitations, counsels, and works like riuers frō an euerlasting fountane.

[Page 288] The seconde cause of this euil ingratitude,2. causes of mani ingra­titude. is the lust of the fleshe, that whereby the flesh or original sinne doth work to bring out most abhominable fruite. The force of this concu­piscence al mortal men doe feele in thēselues,Concupis­cence. though diuerslie. And it is as à litle riuer slow­ing from the fountaine, and infecting whatso­euer it meeteth, with ye horrible stinch it hath. Against this the lust of the spirite is opposed, the which like à pleasant riuer floweth from the holie Ghost,A remedie for this cause. wherewith such as haue turned from their sinnes are endued, the which maketh the cogitations, and actions to spring at it were, and to prosper. But concer­ning the workes of the lust of the flesh, and the fruite of the lust of the spirit,Gal. 5, 17. 19. &c. reade the 5. chapter vnto the Galathians.

The thirde cause of ingratitude,3. cause of ingratitude. and of o­ther sinns, is the cogitation of the flesh, to wit, when ye cogatatiō raised-vp by concupiscence enterpriseth to reason, and to dispute of those thinges which concupiscence doeth offer as gratefull, and pleasant to the fleshe.

This Paul to the Romanes calleth the Wise­dome of the flesh, Rom. 8, 7▪ and enimitie against God. For seeing it swarueth not from her beginning, that is from the fleshe, and the lust thereof, it cannot sauour those things which are of God.Aremedie for the 3. cause. To this the wisedome of the spirite is oppo­sed, which the Apostle vnto the Romanes, na­meth, [Page 289] The wisedome of the spirite. Rom. 8, 7. This wise­dome of the spirite when it taketh the ground of her reasoning from her fountane, as from à beginning, it cannot by reasoning conclude any other thing but that which is of the spirit God, whome alwaies it beholdeth.

The fourth cause of our ingratitude and disobedience towarde God,4. cause of mans vn­thankeful­nes. is The wil of the fleshe, and of the minde, As Paul saith. This la­boreth to attaine, & enioie that, which ye wise­dome of the flesh persuaded vnto as delecta­ble.Wil of the flesh. For in this will there is election and lust whose end is the vse of the thing desired. And although the will of reason doe sometime re­clame the reasoning of the fleshe: yet for the most parte by the violence of the fleshe it is borne-awaie, euen as à shippe is violentlie carried-awaie by contrarie windes, striue the marriner neuer so much. For this will of the fleshe the Philosophers,Selfe-loue, yea and Paul too cal­leth Selfe-loue, which is à blind vndiscrete, sa­uage loue of the bodie, hurteful both to him that hath it, and to others: which Socrates, not knowing the fountane of euil, calleth the heade and the spring of al wickednesse. Be­cause it taketh awaie mutual charitie, where­of all mischiefe ariseth among men, while through the instinct hereof they seeke after wealth, auctoritie, preferment, and pleasure: [Page 290] wherein they doe place the soueraigne felici­tie of man.A remedi [...] for this cause. Against this wil of the fleshe and of the minde, is opposed the will of the spi­rite, the fourth cause of good workes: and commaundeth such thinges as bee contra­rie to the flesh, and her will. Which wil of the spirite maie bee called also Selfe-loue, A good selfe loue. but yet à right & cōmendable loue, such as folow­eth not the sense of the fleshe, but the iudge­ment of the spirite. This right and commen­dable Selfe-loue driueth à man to endeuour, to labor, and with earnest praiers to craue & to beg that ye most excellent part of vs, which is the minde, maie be endued with true god­linesse and virtue, and that to this ende that it maie bee ioined to God the soueraigne good, in whom onelie the true felicitie of man doth consist. This difference betweene this double Selfe-loue our Sauiour doth teach, when hee saith,Iob 1. 13. 25 He that hateth his life, (yeelding no­thing therevnto in these casual, and transito­rie things) he doth as hee shoulde loue it, & desireth to be saued: but he yt loueth (by yeel­ding) he hateth it, & seketh ye destructiō of his soule. As there is thē a doble self loue: so there is à double selfe hatred. One, according to the right iudgement of the minde, whereby we auoide the enticements of the flesh, withdrawing vs from God: the other of the foolish­nesse of the fleshe, whereby we despise the [Page 291] thinges concerning vertue, goodlines, and ho­nestie. This is à prophane and hurtful: the other is holie, and à necessarie hatred.

The fifth cause of mans vnthankefulnesse to God,5. cause of ingratitude. is the peruerse dealing of the world; the infinite offences; and the innumerable ex­amples of all manner wickednesse. This euil custome of the worlde is the fodder of all ini­quitie, naughtinesse, and peruersitie: where­by manie euen of such, as purposed to feare God, are carried-awaie, so that they become wilde oftentimes, and spurne against GOD. Hereof it is that we see in all states such con­tempte of the Gospell which reprooueth this darkenesse: Hereof spring the detesta­ble behauiour of parentes; the il bringing-vp of children. For while men doe looke-vppon the multitude, auctoritie, and power of such as sinne, they excuse themselues by example: as they did who dispising the spi­rite of Christ in Noah,1, Pet. 3, 20▪ at the length suffered due punishment in the floude. This wicked­nesse doeth deserue, that men shoulde bee punishod with à reprobate minde, as Paule saith:Rom. 1, [...]28. GOD deliuered them vp into à re­probate minde, according to the threatening of the lawe,Deut. 28, 28 The LORDE shall smite thee with madnes, and with blindnes, & with astonieng of hart. For such as are forsakē of God for their [Page 292] custome of sinning are by little and little so berest of their wits, blinded and strucken with astonishment of heart, that they become with­out feeling, and giue themselues to wantonnesse, not vse Paul his wordes, calling vertue, dis­honestie; good, euil, wholesome thinges, hurtfull; and iudge cleane amisse: than which no paine can bee imagined more grieuous. When therefore we beholde the most part of mankinde to rushe headlong as it were into al manner wickednesse, let vs call into minde the greatnesse of Gods displeasure, who by his moste righteous iudgement permitteth, that mans rebellion bee punished with mad­nesse. Of which madnes Paul writeth when hee saith:2. Thess. 2, 10. 11. Because they receiued not the loue of the trueth, that they might bee saued, God sent them strong delusion, that theie shoulde beleeue lies. But most horrible is it, that this pu­nishment shoulde sticke in the posteritie, ac­cording to the saying of Salomon,Rom. 17, 13. He that re­wardeth euil for good, euil shal not depart from his house. A remedie for this cause. Therefore when wee see men to bee delighted in the filthines of sinne, let vs auoide ye examples of iniquitie, & against thē let vs set the obedience of ye chast spirits, & the examples of the sancts, who deemed nothing either more pleasant, or more auncient, or bet­ter then faith and obedience, whereby we are ioined to God. And let euerie man take heede [Page 293] that he be not taken with the deceitful coun­sels of the flesh.Against cu­stome of sinning. For there be which doe pur­pose, but most foolishlie, before their death, to repent, not considering how by too much vsing to sinne, that sinne becommeth euen à nature as it were. For as Augustine doth saie, while custome is not resesied, it becommeth neces­sitie. And the Poet,

When à sickenes hath taken roote,
If thou take Phisicke,
2. cause of mans wic­kednes.
it wil not boote.

The sixt cause of mans disobedience, and of all wickednes raigning in the worlde, is the Prince of this aer (as the Apostle saith,) euen the diuel himselfe. He is present to all those causes aboue recited as à chiefe capitane. For hee insinuateth himselfe to the corrupted nature, and stirreth vp the concupiscence by obiectes & poisons; and confirmeth the co­gitations of the flesh; and moueth the will; & by wonderful slights & snares encreaseth the wicked manners of men, to spread abroad his kingdome the farder, and to abolish the king­dome of Christ by little and little.A remedie for this last cause. Againste this prince of the aër, is opposed the prince of the Church, euen the Lorde of hostes, who is hier than the heauens, from whome are the causes of godlie actions aboue recited. For he doeth giue the holie Ghost; cherishe the lust of the spirite; strengthen good cogitations; keepe the wil; and proposeth the examples [Page 294] of holie men, but chieflie his owne example to be imitated of vs. Or in fewer wordes: A liuelie faith in Iesus Christ is the general re­medie againste all the wickednesse and per­uersitie of ye world.Faith in Christ com­mended. For this is the victorie that o­uercōmeth the world, 1. Iohn. 5, 4. euen our▪ faith. For by this Christ the conqueror of darkenes is possessed; by this à new spirit whereby we resist ye flesh, is obteined; by this the whole bodie of sinne is killed and mortified; and by this in al trou­bles wee doe flie vnto the name of the Lorde, that is, vnto praier, the safest sanctuarie, the righteous runneth vnto it, Rom. 18, 10. and is exalted.

CHAP. 37.
1. Of Christ his intercession for vs; 2. And of diuerse notable thinges to be con­sidered in the same.

THE thideThe other two are at large en­treated of in the 10. Chapters immediatlie going afore. and last parte of Christ his Priesthood, is his intercession for ye whole Church, and for each particular member of the same. For as Christe alone by the sen­tence of the law is perfectlie righteous; and alone hath giuen himselfe à ransome for the redemption of all: So hee and none beside is the mediator of intercession, inasmuch as intercession dependeth vppon the merite of righteousnes, and of the price giuen for à re­demption.1. Tim. 3, 5. 6. And therefore Paul doeth saie; There is one mediator betweene God and man, [Page 295] euen the man Christ Iesus, who gaue himselfe à ransome for all men. Vppon this place Theo­doret writeth thus: There is one peace maker, who hath ioined those thinges which were con­trarie and distant. Hee called Christe à man, because hee called him an intercessor: for man was made intercessor. And as hee that woulde reconcile two, ioining their handes together, doth put himselfe betweene, and taking one by the right hande, and the other by the lefte, doeth ioine them together: So Christe when hee had vnited the diuine nature to the humane, did procure such à friendeshippe, as can neither bee violated nor broken. Rom. 8, 34. And Paule vnto the Romanes doeth saie: Who shall condemne? It is Christe which is deade, yea or rather, which is risen againe, who is also at the right hande of GOD, and maketh request for vs. Heere the Apostle against condemnation setteth the intercession of Christ sitting at the right hand of the father, and making intercession for the Church, and for euerie member thereof. And vnto the Hebrewes it is thus written of him: This man, Heb. 7, 24. 25. because he endureth euer, hath an euer­lasting Priesthood. Wherefore hee is able also per­fectlie to saue them that come vnto God by him, se­ing he euer liueth, to make intercession for thē. As therefore the force of ye obedience of ye law in christ, & ye price of his passion; is of infinit va­lor, & merit: so his intercessiō is most effectual, [Page 296] and pretious. So that it can not bee but his praier on our behalfe, for whome hee ma­keth intercession, must bee hearde. And for them principalie he maketh intercessiō, who are made his members through faith. Not­withstanding the difference is herein, be­cause when hee was in this worlde, hee was à fulfiller of the law, And with one oblation once made hath hee, Heb. 10, 14. consecrated for euer them, that are sanctified: But as yet hee maketh interces­sion for vs with his father, as the eternal priest of the Church.1. Iohn 2, 1. For so saith Iohn, If anie man sinne, wee haue an aduocate with the father, Iesus Christ the iust. Wherefore Christ maketh in­tercession both now and alwaie for ye Church, whose intercession dependeth vppon the me­rite of his righteousnes, and the price giuen for our redemption. And this doeth Iohn meane, when hee nameth him the iust.

But fiue thinges heere must bee conside­red,Fiue things to be consi­dered in Christe his intercession. which wil open ye better this part of christ his priesthood touching the intercession.

The first is how Christ is to be caled vpō after two waies,1. Christe is to be praied vnto in two respects, to wit, As the giuer of al good thinges with the father, and the holy Ghost. For when we are bidden to praie vnto God, & Christ is verie god of equal maiestie, & power both with ye father & the holy ghost, hee is to be honored euen as God. When it is said ther­fore,Rom, 4, 10. Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, & him [Page 297] onelie shalt thou feare, that worship and feare is commanded, which is of that God, who is in essence but one, and three in persons. For, seeing the essence of the diuinitie is but one in number, and vndiuidible, it must needes fol­lowe that the worship ascribed to God must apperteine to the persons which are of one, & the same essence. Againe, because the workes of the diuinitie vnto things without, as Augu­stine saith, are vndiuided; it foloweth, that the seruice of inuocation is vndiuided. This wor­ship of one God, to wit, the Father, the Sonne, and the holie Ghost, dependeth vpon the pa­tronage of à mediator, without whome there is no waie open vnto God. Besides, Christe is to be praied-vnto as à Mediator, and inter­cessor, that for his sake, we maie be heard; and that hee maie intreate the Father for vs; and that he maie carrie our grones, and praiers vn­to the eternal Father, according to that saieng,Heb, 5, 6. Thou art à Priest for euer after the order of Mel­chisedek. Therefore it is wel saide, O Sonne of God, make thou intercession for vs with the eter­nal Father. I doe begge in thie name, that thou wouldest begge of the Father, that it maie be gi­uen me. Euseb. Lib. 10. Eccles. Hist. Eusebius doth saie, The great Bishop of the whole Church, euen Iesus Christ, the onelie be­gotten sonne of God, taking all men with a cheere­ful countenance, and lifted-vp handes à sweete smelling sauor, and sacrifices without either bloud [Page 298] or bodie, doth offer them to the celestial Father, and the God of al creatures, he first worshipping, & yeelding due honor to the Father, after-ward prai­eng him to abide pleased, and gratious alwaie to vs al. Furthermore, whereas the saintes doe seue­ralie cal-vpon the persons of the trinitie, som­time vpon the Father, somtime vpon ye sonne, and sometime vpon the holie Ghost, as Me­lancton in his forme of praiers doth shewe, theie parte not the vndiuidible vnitie of the diuine nature, neither exclude theie one per­son, while theie name another, but theie doe both acknowledge the vnitie of the Godhead, because theie knowe that God alone is to be called-vnto; and confesse à distinction and e­qualitie of persons; & do worship the distinct proprieties of persons in the worke of our sal­uation. Hereof the primitiue Church, did di­rect their praier vnto the three persons of the Trinitie in this forme of wordes: Lorde haue mercie vpon vs; Christ haue mercie vpon vs; Lord haue mercie vpon vs. A triple confession there­fore of the Church is in this praier. One is of the vnitie of the God-head, against the Greci­ans and Barbarians, who brought-in à multi­tude of Gods. Another is of the distinction of persons, and of their equalitie in one diuine essence, against Arrius and others. The thirde is, of the distinction of the properties of the diuine persons in working the mysterie of our [Page 299] saluation. For although it be rightlie said that the workes in his creatures are vndiuided: yet are not ye properties of persons to be confoū ­ded, the Father saueth; the sonne saueth; & the holie Ghost doth saue. Behold the vndiuided workes of the Trinitie in sauing vs: yet the fa­ther saueth by giuing his sonne; the sonne sa­ueth by obeieng the father, by suffering, and by intercession; and the holie Ghost saueth by regenerating, and sanctifieng. So then the pro­perties are diuers in the same worke of salua­tion. Therfore the distinct inuocations of the Father, of the sonne, & of the holie Ghost, ad­monish vs of these hie matters. And who so at this daie doe finde fault with these formes, do hide poison in their minde, and secretlie do ei­ther inuade the difference & equalitie of per­sons, or confound ye properties of persons in ye mysterie of our saluatiō.2. In what respect Christ is an intercessor. Secōdlie, in this place it wold be considred, how Christ is ye mediator & intercessor, either in respect of his humani­tie onlie; or in respect of his diuinitie onlie; or in respect of both together.Magist. Sent. Lib. 3. Distinst. 19. The master of the sentēces, & in our daies too one Stancar an Ita­lian, do saie, yt Christ was à mediator in respect of his humanitie onelie: Osiander on the other side saith, he was a mediator in respect of his diuinitie. But here necessarilie, and afore all thinges this rule must not be forgotten, That the names of Christ his office agree neither to the diuine nature onelie, nor onelie to the humane, but [Page 300] to the whole person which is God and man. For ye Sonne of God did therfore take mans nature vpon himselfe, that he might be the sauiour of man according to both natures. Moreouer the epistle vnto the Hebrues, ascribeth the priest­hod to Christ, according to both natures. And although he suffered, and died onelie in his humane nature, and by the power of his diui­nitie ouercame death: yet the benefite of re­demption, à part whereof intercession is, tou­cheth the whole person, otherwise that diuine nature, had neuer taken mans nature into à personal vnion. But whereas it is obiected, None is mediator for himselfe, Againe, None is intercessor with himselfe: The answere is easie, These thinges are true in one respect, & where the person is simple. But here à diffe­rence must be put betwene the Godhead sen­ding, & the Sonne which was sent. The sonne in that he was sent, is à priest: Therfore both à mediator, and an intercessor. Therefore the person sent is the mediatrix with the God­head sending. Hereunto agree the testimonies of ye Fathers. Chrysostome saith, Neither could man alone be mediator, because it was for the me­diator to talke with God. Cyril: And Christ is the Mediator of God and man: Because in that one God and man are conioyned. Ambrose, That he might be the mediator of God and man, Christ Ie­sus was God and man; because in God he was man, [Page 301] and in man God, that through both he might be à Mediator.

Thirdlie,3. When Chrih is an intercessour, for vs. it is to be knowen, that through the intercession of Christ, we haue thē accesse vnto the Father, when we abide in grace tho­rough faith. For in vaine do they pretend the intercession of Christe; and in vaine doe they vaunt of the talke with God, who are desti­tute of faith. For it is necessarie, that they be members of Christ, which wil cal vpon God aright.Rom. 5, 10. 2. Therefore saith Paul, Beeing iustified by [...]aith, we haue peace towarde God, through our Lorde Iesus Christ. By whom also we haue accesse through faith vnto this grace, wherin we stand.

Fourthlie,4. When God doeth accept the praiers of the faithful. it is to be noted, that the praiers of Saintes, are therfore acceptable in the sight of God, because they depend vpon the inter­cession of Christ the highe Priest. For when we make intercession for others, we praie not trusting in our owne merites, or price which we haue paide for redemption; but in the me­rite of Christ his righteousnes, and in the ran­some which he hath.Iohn. 15, 16. Therefore saith Christe, Whatsoeuer ye shal aske the Father in my Name, that is depending vpon my merite, and inter­cession, he will giue it you. Hitherto pertaineth that compellation in the Lordes praier,Math. 6, 9. O our Father. For as the name of a Father putteth vs in minde of Christ, in whom through faith we are the sonnes of God, and he is our father: So [Page 302] the pronoune Our doth admonish vs of faith, that through confidence in the sonne, wee should cal vpon the father, not trusting in a­nie worthines, or merites of our owne. For which cause the Apostle saith: Let vs approch vnto God through him. Heb. 7, 25. For he euer liueth, to make intercession for vs. As often therefore as wee would praie, let vs consider the cause whie we saie Our Father, that we maie both tho­roughlie be persuaded, that for his sonnes sake we please God; and without al doubting also beleeue, that for the intercession of the sonne, whose members we be through faith, we are heard. Wherefore theie which bring not this faith, do but waste winde when they praie. For theie haue none accesse vnto ye father. Let such then looke what they do, who contrarie to the word of God▪ do depend vpon other patrons.

Fiftlie,5. We are to make none our mediator saue Christe onelie. forsomuch as the sonne of God is the perpetual priest, which maketh intercessi­on for the Church, whensoeuer it doth amisse▪ we maie not flie vnto other patrons, but vnto Christ alone as the onelie patron, and most trustie anchor of safetie. Therfore the Apostle Iohn doth saie, If anie man sinne, we haue an ad­uocate with the father, 1. Iohn 2, 1. 2 Iesus Christ the iust. And he is the reconciliation for our sinnes. But then do we rightlie approch vnto this Aduocate for the attainment of the remission of sinnes,Properties of à liuelie faith. whē we are sorie for our wickednes cōmitted; when [Page 303] we rest our selues with à faith vnfained vpon Iesus Christ the propitiator, and intercessor; when we purpose afterward through God his grace to leade à pure life; and finalie, when we cast from our heartes à purpose to sinne.Against a [...] ­ricular con­fession and absolution. Vn­lesse these be ioined-together, in vaine doest thou boast yt Christ is thie patron. Some there be who think theie be pure, if once theie haue poured their sinnes into the bosome of some pastor; & some pastors too do thinke, that by their magical absolutions, theie can vnburden sinners: but both sortes doe most filthilie erre out of ye waie. For, both Christ alone is ye pur­ger of sins, in whō if thou repose not a liuelie faith, which hath those foure cōditions which we haue recited, in vaine dost thou vnburden thie self in the bosome of ye priest: & Christ a­lone it is yt absolueth from sins, vnto whom if yu aproch not through faith, yu sahlt die in thy sins.True abso­lution what. Of this point somewhat more is spo­ken aboue Chap. 17. But the absolution of à priest is then pro­fitable, when the confession is tempered with true repentance & turning from sin. And this absolution of the priest is nothing else, than à testimonie of the absolution which is giuen in heauē, by our hie priest Iesus Christ. And ther­fore saith ye Lord,Mat. 18, 18. Whatsoeuer you loose on earth, shalbe loosed in heauen. So that the absolution which is pronounced by the minister of the Gospel, dependeth vpon his faith which re­quireth absolution, not of the merite either of [Page 304] confession, or of pronouncing any wordes whatsoeuer. This place would craue a confu­tation of them who chose other aduocates, be­side Christ: but because this madnes is alrea­die mentioned aboue,Chap. 24. in the 3. rea­son whie the masse is ab­hominabe. where we dealt with Popish sacrifices, I wil not with moe wordes refute them in this place.

And thus much of ye three parts of Christ his priest-hoode, to wit, of doctrine; of sacri­fice; and of intercession. The other pointe contained in the definition of the priesthoode touching the preseruation of the church, the remission of sins, the gift of the holie Ghoste, and euerlasting life, be rather most pleasant fruites, than partes of Christ his Priesthoode.

CHAP. 38.
1. Of the couenant which Christ our hie Priest hath entred into; 2. The special pointes to bee considered therein; 3. Of the olde and newe coue­nant, or Testament, wherein theie doe differ; 4. The difference betweene the newe Testament, and the Gospel; 5. Whether with the olde Te­stament, the tenne commandements be abrogated or no.

FOrsomuch as euerie priest, as ye Epistle to ye Hebrues doth testifie is a suretie of some co­uenant [Page 305] (for it is behoueful, that some certaine couenant be set according to which the me­diator, betweene the parties at controuersie maie determine, that sure peace and friend­ship maie be established betweene God and men,) Christ our Priest hath à certaine coue­nant. For as the Leuitical priest had his priest­hood, and à certaine couenant annexed to the priesthood: So Christ our Priest, to whome the Leuitical priestes with their sacrifice and couenant gaue place, hath his priesthood, and certaine couenants annexed to the priesthod. For the priesthood being changed (as the Epistle vnto the Hebrues doth saie) of necessitie there must be a change of the law. Heb. 7, 12. Againe,Heb. 9, 15. for this cause is he the mediator of the newe Testament, that through death, which was for the redemption of the transgressions that were in the former Testa­ment, they which were called might receaue the promise of eternal inheritance. 16. For where a Testa­ment is, there must be the death of him that made the Testament. 17. For the Testament is confirmed, when men are dead: for it is yet of no force, as long as he that made it is aliue. 18. Wherefore neither was the first ordained without bloud. For when Moses had spoken euerie precept to the people, according to the lawe, 19. he tooke the bloud of calues and of goats, with water and purple wool, and hyssope, and sprink­led both the booke, and al the people, Saieng, This is the bloud of the Testament, which God hath ap­pointed [Page 306] vnto you. And although by these words of the Apostle it is euident, that as the former, that is,The old co­uenāt what; the olde Testament, is a couenant an­nexed to the priesthood of Aaron, confirmed by the bloud of brutish creatures, whereby GOD did binde himselfe to the Iewes for to giue them the lande of Canaan to their pos­session, if so be for their partes theie obserued the condition, which was the fulfilling of the lawe;The new co­ueant what; so the newe Testament should be a co­uenant annexed to the Priesthood of Christe, confirmed with the bloud of Christ; whereby God doth binde himselfe to forgiue sinnes, and to giue a celestial,The anci­ent fathers before Christ par­takers of the newe coue­nant. and euerlasting inheri­tance in heauen, but with a condition of faith, whose true and right fruite is perfect obedi­ence toward GOD. And although this coue­nant be ratified onlie to such as be called and doe beleeue: yet, least we should thinke that the Fathers before the incarnation of Christe, were destitute of the grace of the newe coue­nant, it is good that we make a better, and a more distinct explication of this doctrine so necessarie to be knowne.

First,The newe couenant was in al a­ges. therefore and aboue all we must con­stantlie beleeue, that in al ages euen from the fal of our first parentes, the waie to be sa­ued both was, and is yet one and the same, to wit, by the Priest Christe alone, of whose righteousnesse theie be partakers, and be sa­ued, [Page 307] whosoeuer beleeue in him. So that as touching the purgation of sinne, and attaine­ment of euerlasting life, there is but one per­petual couenant or testament of God, where­by God doeth binde himselfe to pardon such as doe [...]lee vnto Christe. And although, if you respect the expresse worde, there is no mention of this couenant concerning remis­sion of sinnes, before the Lord entered there­into with Abraham: yet the thinges them­selues, which appertaine vnto the substance of this couenant, were verie wel knowne to the Fathers before the floud.The partes of the coue­nant be­tweene God and man. By the thinges I meane both the promise of the restoring of man through Christe; and also the faith of this promise. For the promise in GOD, and the faith in man, are the substantial partes, as I maie saie, of this couenant. The coue­nant betweene GOD and Abraham was this:Gen. 17, 7. I wil establish my couenant betweene me thee, and thy seede after thee in their generati­ons, for an euerlasting couenant, to be GOD vn­to thee, and thy seede after thee. And some­what afore in the same Chapter there goeth an oath of GOD,4. Beholde, I make my couenant with thee, that is, as truelie as I liue, I wil esta­blish my couenant &c.1. The mat­ter or foun­dation of the co­uenant.

Here first of al would be considered ye mat­ter or foundation of this couenant, which is ye promised seed, by whose merit, & intercession [Page 308] there is an attonement made betweene God and men. Wherefore whatsoeuer good thing the Lorde doth promise, it is ratified in the Sonne, who hath reconciled vs and the Father together.2. Cor. 5, 19. God was in Christ, saith Paule, and re­conciled the world to him selfe, not imputing their sinnes to them, and hath committed to vs the worde of reconciliation. And for this cause this couenant is called by Isaiah,Isai 54, 10. the couenant of peace.

Secondlie,2. The won­derful loue of God to vs ward in ma­king this co­uenant. we should cal into mind ye won­derful humilitie of God, whereby the diuine maiestie so debaseth it selfe of meere benigni­tie and good will to manward, hauing consi­deration of our humane frailnesse, that not onlie he doth simplie promise free benedicti­on to miserable and wretched sinners: but al­so bindeth himselfe by couenant; that we may knowe his fatherlie goodwil to vs ward.

Thirdlie, 3. The per­petuitie of God his co­uenant. the immutabilitie, and constancie, or perpetuitie of this couenant confirmed by an oath, would be thought-vpon. Whereof the Epistle vnto the Hebrues doth saie: Heb. 6, 13. When God made the promise vnto Abraham, because he had no greater to sweare by, he sware by him selfe,14. saieng, Surelie I wil abundantlie blesse thee, and multiplie thee marueilouslie. He addeth à reason, 17. saieng, So God willing more abundantlie to shewe vnto the heires of promise the stablenesse of his counsel,18. bound him selfe by an oath, that by [Page 309] two immutable things, wherein it is vnpossible that God should lie, we might haue strong consolation, which haue our refuge to hold-fast the hope that is set before vs.

Fourthlie,4. The large­nes of the co­uenant. we are to weigh, the largenes of the couenant entred-into with Abrahā, name­lie howe it extendeth vnto the seede of Abra­ham,Seede of A­brahā what; and that for euer and euer. But what is that seede of Abraham? Paule both in the 4. and 9. chapters vnto the Romanes, and also in the 3. vnto the Galathians, defineth the seede of Abraham to be euen al those, of what nati­ons soeuer, which doe walke in the steppes of the faith of Abraham, that, al which beleeue the promise of grace, as Abraham did.

Fiftlie,5. God be­stoweth im­mortalitie vpon his confederats. when it is saide howe this couenant was entered into with Abraham, and his seede for euermore, it is meant that God bestoweth immortalitie to such as are linked to him in cōfederacie. For if by death we should perish, the perpetuitie of the couenant could no way stande.

Nowe on the other side the faith of Abra­ham, and of his seede aunswereth to the coue­nant of God.How we doe couenant with God for our partes. For, when God bindeth himselfe to vs by couenāt to giue saluation; he bindeth vs withall vnto faith, and vnto newe obedi­ence which cannot be separated from faith. And therefore God saith to Abraham,Gen. 17, 1. Walke before me, to wit, in faith; and be thou vpright, [Page 310] that is, serue me syncerelie, and preferre obe­dience toward me before al things.Gen. 22, 4. 5. &c. This obe­dience through his faith Abraham declared, when he was readie most willinglie to sacri­fice at the commaundement of God, his be­loued sonne Isaac, whome he loued aboue al the world. Whereby it maie easilie be ga­thered, that the endeuouring of the minde, obtaineth the praise of perfection before God.

Moreouer,The coue­nant of God fulfilled and confir­med by the bloud of Christ. as this eternal couenant of God with the Church hath for foundation and sub­stance the promised seed: So being shadowed by sundrie types in the old lawe, at the length it was fulfilled by the comming of Christ into the world, and confirmed with the bloud of Christe. For the remembrance and ratifieng whereof, Baptisme, and the Lordes supper be instituted.Baptisme and the L. Supper seales that God hath fulfilled his couenant. For as Baptisme is a couenant of a good conscience with God depending vpon the bloud of Christ, whereby it is purged from dead workes: So the Lordes supper is a com­memoration of the same couenant touching our redemption, established by the bloud of Christ.1. Cor. 11, 25 And therefore it is called the cup of the new Testament, The coue­nant be­weene God and man how i [...] is defined. or cup of the couenant. Wher­fore you maie rightlie define this eternal co­uenant of God, if you saie, It is a couenant of at­tonement betwene God and men, wherby both God and men are bound together; God for his part pro­mising, [Page 311] yea by oath, remission of sinnes, and euerla­sting life for the merits of Christe, by whose bloud this couenant is confirmed: & men for their parts do both accept the promise through faith, and also doe not onlie promise, but also shewe due obedience through their faith. Which being so, it maie be asked, whie in the scripture mention is made of a double couenant or testament, namelie an old and a new. For both the Lord by the Pro­phet Ieremiah doth saie so; and the auctor al­so of the Epistle vnto the Hebrues stādeth vp­on that same groūd.Iere. 31, 31. Behold, the daies come, saith the Lord, that I wil make a new couenant with the house of Israel, 32. and with the house of Iudah. Not according to the couenant that I made wi [...]h their fathers, when I tooke thē by the hande to bring thē out of the lande of Egypt. 33. &c. But this shal be the couenāt I wil make with the house of Israel: Af­ter those daies, saith the Lord, I wil put my lawe in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts, and wil be their God, 34. & thei shalbe my people. And thei shal teach no more euerie man his neighbor, and e­uerie man his brother, saieng, Knowe the Lord: for theie shal al knowe me from the least of them vnto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I wil for­giue their iniquitie, and wil remember their sinnes no more. Here the Prophete in plaine wordes maketh mentiō of a double couenant, an old, and a newe.

So Paul vnto the Galathians saith, yt Agar [Page 312] the bond woman did signifie mount Sina:Gal. 4, 24. 25. 26. &c. and Sara the free woman was à figure of the cele­stial Ierusalem; and he addeth by those two the two Testaments were signified, One gen­dering vnto bondage; and the other vnto freedome. As therefore the olde Testament to Agar gendering vnto bondage: So the newe Testament is compared to Sara gendering vnto freedome. By which places we doe see howe there be two Testamentes, and those greatlie differing.The old Te­stament what. Of which the old Testamēt was à mutual obligation betweene God and the Israelites; God for his part promising the land of Canaan; the Israelites for their partes binding them selues to obeie him according to the lawe of Moses,Signe of the old couenā [...]. whereof as the bloud of the lambe where-withal the people was be­sprinkled,Ende of the old couenāt. was the external signe: so the final end was, that among that certaine people the memorie of the promise of grace might be kept vntil the comming of the Messiah, who was to be borne of that people. But the ende of the newe Testament greatlie differed there­from, as both we haue shewed, and the words of the Prophet doe most euidentlie declare, of which let vs more deepelie consider. And that we may the better vnderstand the words of the Prophet, we must note that there is à triple time of the newe Testament, to wit, when it was promised, when it was represen­ted, [Page 313] and when it is fullie performed.Time of the couenāt promised. The time of the couenant promised, continued from the first promise concerning the seede of the wo­man, vntil Christe came into the world, and was hanged vpon the crosse, by whose bloud this newe couenant is confirmed, & by whose virtue, as manie as haue beleeued the promise are salued, as were the Patriarches, Prophets, Kings, and manie moe. Neither do the words of the Apostle let this thing,Heb. 9, 17. saieng, The Testa­ment is of no force, so long as he that made it, is a­liue. For the testator euen Christ, in Gods hea­uenlie decree, died euen since the promise was first made.Reuel. 13, 8. Hence it is in the Reuelation, The lambe was slaine from the beginning of the world. And therfore by the virtue of Christ his death and passion, both Adam, and Habel, and Seth, and al beleeuers before Christ did come in the flesh, were salued. The Prophet Ieremiah speaketh not of this time of the Testament promised. The time of the couenant exhibi­ted, was the time when our Sauiour Christ di­ed, and suffered, which time continueth euen vntill the end of the world, into this time we are fallen, who beleeue on the Messiah come, as the Fathers did on the Messiah promised, although as touching the knowledge of the Messiah, à more cleare light hath shined vpon vs than did vpon them. For as the shadowe, and à goodlie image doe differ: So the cleare [Page 314] knowledge which we haue of Christe since he shewed himselfe, doth much differ frō the sha­dowe of the old people. Notwithstanding, to both peoples it is verie profitable. The time of the Testament fulfilled, shal be after the resur­rection of ye dead, when euerlastinglie we shal enioie ye fruit of this wonderful couenant. For we shal behold, not ye shadow, nor the image, but the verie thing it selfe, namelie redemptiō and saluation through Christe. The Prophet Ieremiah then speaketh of this double time, to wit, of the time when the couenant was exhi­bited in this life, and shal al in al be fulfilled in the life to come. Nowe let vs see the words of the Prophet: I wil put my lawe, saith he, in their inward partes, and write it in their hearts. What lawe, I beseech you, is this? What manner of writing? This word Lawe, in the Hebrue tong, is taken generalie for euerie doctrine. And therefore an apt signification is to be giuen to euerie place, according vnto the circumstance of the place. Zacharias father of Iohn Baptist therefore doeth helpe vs herein, when he saith of his sonne,Luk. 1, 76. And thou, babe, shalt be called the Prophet of the most High: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lorde, 77. to prepare his waies: To giue knowledge of saluation vnto his people, by the remission of their sinnes, 78. through the tender mercie of our GOD. The Prophete meaneth out of al doubt the knowledge of saluation, [Page 315] and the remission of sinnes through the bloud of Christe. For so he saith: Al shal knowe me. And that this must be vnderstoode of the knowledge of Gods heauenlie wil, he plaine­lie doeth shewe, in the wordes immediatelie ensuing; For I wil, saith GOD, forgiue their iniquitie, and wil remember their sinnes no more. Thus we knowe what lawe the Prophet mea­neth in this place. But what manner of wri­ting doeth he vnderstand? Surelie this wri­ting is neither an idle nor an hurtful know­ledge: but it is a knowledge with a liuelie faith in the heart, whereby we be persuaded, and feele in our mindes that God is merciful to vs, and hath pardoned our sinns for the merits of Christ the Priest; and whereby motions of the spirit agreeable to the lawe of God, be raised-vp within vs. Of which effect the Apostle cal­leth it the spirit; and so obedience of the lawe is wrought in man. This faith, and this liuelie sense in the hearts of the faithful, is the writing of the law by the finger of God, that is, by the holie spirit, at the preaching of the Gospel. For as the tables of stone did signifie the extreme hardnes of mans hart, whereof the hart of man not regenerate, is named stonie.Eze. 36, 26. So the writing of the heart doth signifie an heart softened by the power of the holie spirite, at the prea­ching of the Gospel, that in the same as in a newe table, the grace of the Gospel, yea and [Page 316] the lawe it selfe, which ought to be à perpe­tuall rule for the godlie to leade their life by, maie be engrauen, whereof it is called à fle­shie heart. And therefore the Lorde by the Prophet doth saie,Ezek. 36, 26 I wil take awaie the stonie heart out of your bodie, and I wil giue you an heart of flesh.

But here some maie iustlie demaund,Difference betweene the new Te­stament and the Gospel. whe­ther there be anie difference betweene the newe Testament, and the Gospel. For by that we haue spoken, it maie seeme that theie be one and the same thing. Vnto this question we are thus to aunswere: The newe Testament and the Gospel, as touching the substance it selfe, and the subiect, are al one: but in à con­sideration they differ. For substance, and for subiect they are one; because both are a prea­ching of Christ, and howe to attaine eternal life through Christ. But in à consideration they differ. Because the one, which is the Gospel, hath à name from bringing ioiful, and good newes, touching the attainment of euerlasting life through Christe: and by the other, that is the Testament, is signified, that God not con­tent with à simple promise, doth binde him­selfe to vs by couenant (an oath comming be­tweene,) that we maie vnderstand, both the immoueable decree of God, touching the at­taining of saluation by Christ; and howe we also for our partes are bound to God by faith. [Page 317] For faith is one part of the couenant, to wit, of mans part. For in al couenants, as aboue also hath bene shewed, mutual conditions, and lawes be required. The same is to be saide of the olde Testament, and of Moses lawe.

Furthermore, when the Scripture is diui­ded into the lawe and the Gospel, it is to be vnderstoode, that the difference is taken from the things subiect: and when it is diui­ded into the old and newe Testament, the dif­ferences are taken from certaine circumstan­ces of the things subiect. But, when the holie Scripture, which we cal the old and newe Te­stament, is so caled, it is rather of custome than of any difference of things subiect, except you speake by the figure Synecdoche. And there­fore Augustine doth saie: Aug. Lib. 2. Retract. Where I saide the au­thoritie was included within the 44. bookes of the olde Testament, following the vsual maner of spea­king, which the Church hath at this daie, I called it the old Testament. But the Apostle seemeth not to cal anie thing the old Testament, but that which was giuen in mount Sinai. And therefore ye same Augustine writing vnto Bonifacius, Aug. ad Bo­nif. Lib. 3. doth saie, howe they might more truly be called instruments than testaments, that that might be called the old, and this the new. I wil add also herevnto à que­stion out of Augustine, whose words be these: Howe is it named old, which after 430. yeares was made by Moses; and howe is it called newe, which [Page 318] before so manie yeares was made vnto Abraham? The reuelations are to be cōsidered in these names, and not the institutions. The reuealing of the olde Testament was made by Moses: but the reuealing of the new was done by Christ, when he manifested himselfe in the flesh, in whom the iustice of God ap­peared. Againe, because the old testament pertai­neth vnto the old man, from which mā of necessitie is to begin: & the new vnto the new man, of which man must passeouer frō oldnes: & therfore in that, earthly promises are conteined, but in this, heauēly.

Furthermore,Whether the ten-commande­ments be ab­rogated, or no; seeing the Apostle saith, the old testament is abrogated by the newe; and the olde was giuen in mount Sinai, where the Ten-commandements were published-out, it maie in this place be asked touching the Ten-commandements,Heb. 8, 13. whether they also be taken-awaie,Exo. 19, 16. 17. &c. as part of ye old testament? Vnto which question I do thus answere: The Ten-cōman­dements, as they be a part of Moses law, do no whit bind vs; but as they containe the eternal pleasure of God, they do & must continue, euē as manie other things in Moses which are na­tural. But a double vse, according vnto ye con­sideration of double man, is to be respected in the decaloge. For if you respect ye time of man before the reuelation of Christe in man, that is before the iustification of man, through ye faith of Christ, as man himselfe is called old, who is bound either perfectlie to obeie the law, or to be punished according to our Sauiours words [Page 319] vnto the proude Lawer:Mat. 19, 17. If thou wilt enter into life, keepe the commaundements: So the Ten-commandements by a certaine analogie, maie bee comprised vnder the olde testament. For it is a certaine Schoolemaster to bring vnto Christe, Gal. 3, 24. as the olde testament, accusing and condemning man, for that he hath not the righteousnesse which the lawe requireth, whereby man is driuen to seeke Christe,Rom. 10, 4. who is the end of the lawe for righteousnesse vnto euerie one that beleeueth. 2. Cor. 3, 13. 14. &c. In this sense Paul opposeth the moral lawe against the newe Testament. But if you haue an eie vnto the time of man after the reuelation of Christe in man, as man himselfe is become newe: So the Ten-com­mandements is a rule how a newe man should leade his conuersation, and shal neuer be a­bolished. Whose newe obedience doth please, because ye person pleaseth for Christ his sake, whose perfect obedience to the lawe, is impu­ted to the beleeuing man. Now of that which hath bene saide, let vs make manifest the diffe­rences betweene the old and the newe Testa­ment. The which although they differ not in respect of the last end, seeing they both do res­pect the reconciliation, & attonement of man with God, as the final end: yet if we doe con­sider the endes comming betweene, and cir­cumstances, the olde Testament doth goe be­fore the manifestation of the new; if the media­tors, the old by the seruant Moses, ye newe was [Page 320] administred by Iesus Christe the Sonne; if the maner of the dispensation, the Old was but in à shadowe, the Newe hath the verie image of things. The shadowe and the figure was the deliuerance of Israel from the bondage of Ae­gypt, Pharao being oppressed; The truth is the deliuerance of the faithful from the bondage of sinne, Satan being ouercome. The bringing of Israel into the land of Canaan, and the pos­sessing of the same, was the shadowe; ye bring­ing of the spiritual Israel into heauen, and the hereditarie possession thereof, is the truth. The giuing out of the lawe vpon mount Sinai by Moses, was the shadow; The truth is the word which came frō Sion by Christ. The lawe writ­ten in the tables of stone, was the shadow; but the lawe of God written by the finger of God in the harts of men, is the truth. The ministerie of death, was ye shadowe; but the ministerie of the spirit, and of life, is the truth. To speake in a word, al ye Mosaical things, as his gouernment, priesthood, purgations, sacrifices, and the rest, were but shadowes: but Iesus Christ, the eter­nal Priest with his benefites, is the truth. Or to speake both with Augustine, In the olde Testa­ment there is a hiding of the newe; in the newe a manifestation of the olde; Againe, The olde is the beginning, the new is the end: & with Ambrose, It is called a testament, because it is dedicated with bloud, the olde in a figure, to wit, by the bloud [Page 321] of à brutish beast; The newe in the trueth, namelie by the bloud of Iesus Christ.

Thus much concerning the couenant an­nexed to the priesthoode of Christe, and of comparison, betweene the olde and the newe Testament; whereof we haue spoken the more at large, because both olde, and late writers doe varie in this point: but we hope, we haue made it manifest according to the trueth of Gods worde.

CHAP. 39.
1. Howe man is to applie to himselfe the sacrifice of Christ; 2. Of Gods worde, the happinesse of the imbracers, and the punishment of the contemners of the same; 3. Of Faith, and of the righteous­nes thereof; 4. Of the sacraments, how manie theie are, and what theie signi­fie.

THe sacrifice of Christ is applied both by the worde, by faith, and by the sacrament: but diuerslie. For by the word, which is writ­ten in the heart by the holie spirite, it is offe­red as by the hand of God. By faith, beeing conceaued of the word through the holie spi­rite, it is receaued as by the hand of man. And by the Sacraments, as by the seale of God it is [Page 322] signed.1. How the sacrifice of Christ is ap­plied to vs by the word. For, he that beleeueth the preaching of the Gospel, wherbie the benefite of Christ his sacrifice is offered, by faith, which is à worke not of nature, but of grace in man, he receaueth Christe wholie together with his benefites, which benefites are sealed by the sa­cramentes, as that holie Apostle Paule doeth teach.

Wherebie it appeareth how needeful the ministerie of the worde is,The neces­sitie of preaching. as that which is or­dained from heauen, to offer this incompara­ble treasure to vs, this is it which the Lorde saith,Mar. 16, 15. Preach the Gospel to euerie creature; A­gaine, Teach al nations. This ministerie the A­postles deli [...]ered by the handes as it were to posteritie, and from them it is come vnto vs, and shall not be abolished while this worlde shal endure, although Satan with greate rage do persecute such as syncerelie do sound-out the Gospel. And therefore it is our partes, if we loue our saluation, to heare, to vnder­stand, to loue the worde of God, to meditate ther-vpon al our life long, yea and to beleeue the same, and to liue thereafter, that at the length we maie come vnto the desired end of happinesse. For Dauid in the beginning of his Psalmes, sange not in va [...]e, when he sange on this wise:Psal, 1, 2. Blessed is the man who doeth meditate in the lawe, that is, in the do­ctrine, of the Lorde, daie and night.

[Page 323] But wherefore is he blessed?Fruite of meditating vpon the worde of God. Because the me­ditation of the worde worketh two thinges: First, that thou neither listen vnto the counsels of the wicked; nor stand in the waie of sinners; nor sit in the seate of the scorneful: Psal. 1, 2. 3. Secondlie, that thou become like à tree planted by the riuers of waters, that wil bring forth her fruite in due season, vntil thou attaine vnto verie happines it selfe.Psal. 2, 12. And therefore it is added in another Psalme, Blessed are al that trust in him.

But on the other side,Punishmēt of the con­temners of Gods word. where this worde of the Lord is neither loued, nor hearkened vnto, nor thought-vpon, nor beleeued, nor done, man by litle and litle is wrapped in the coun­sels of the wicked; carried violentlie into the waie of the sinners; and at length blasphe­meth God, and al religion, and becommeth à plaine epicure, so that at length he feareth not in his hart to saie,Psal, 14, 1. There is no God, although the lieng toung saie otherwise.Psal. 53, 1. And so he proueth like à tree planted in moste horrible filthi­nesse, and diuelish mud to bring forth fruite meete for death, & damnation, according as it is written in à certaine Psalme,Psal. 14, 1. Theie be corrup­ted, Psal, 53, 1, and abhominable in their waies. And that de­seruedlie. For ye contempt of this word, wher­bie Christ himselfe doth offer himselfe vnto vs, doth highlie offend God; yea and bringeth vpon the contemners themselues, and vpon their posteritie too, blindenes, or a reprobate [Page 324] minde; al maner wickednes, and filthinesse, as Paule in his first Chapter vnto the Romans teacheth at large. And in another Chapter the same Apostle doth saie: Because theie re­ceiued not the loue of the truth, [...]. Thess 3, 10. 11. and therefore God shal send them strong delusion, that there should be­leeue lies. And the euent in manie nations, where Christ himselfe, and the Apostles haue preached, doth aunswere to this prophesie of Paul touching the punishment of such as con­temne the worde of God.Warres of the Turke are token [...] of God his displeasure for contēpt of his word. Neither be the Tur­kish warres anie thing els, but verie tokens of Gods displeasure, for the contempt of his worde. And therefore let vs be more circum­spect by the harmes of other men; and esteem [...] we greatlie the benefite of God, who hath de­liuered to vs his pure worde, wherebie he do­eth offer this infinite grace and benefite of the sacrifice of his sonne, by whose merite we be deliuered from the power of sinne and death; and endued with eternal righteousnesse, and glorie.

Secondlie,2. Howe the sacrifice of Christ is ap­plied to man by faith. in the application of the sacri­fice of Christ, it is required that euerie one of yeeres doe beleeue. For as the worde doth of­fer: So faith, which commeth by hearing of the worde, doth receaue Christe wholie with al his merites, and beleeueth that al sinnes be forgiuen, for the sacrifice sake of the Sonne of God. And therefore in the Christian Creede [Page 325] it is saide,Euerie man saued by his own: faith. I beleeue the forgiuenes of sinnes, that is, I doe knowe, and am firmelie persuaded, that God, according to his promise, wil re­ceaue me into fauour because of the sacrifice, & obedience of his Sonne; and wil not impute my sinnes to me anie-more, but vtterlie blot, and forgiue, yea and remember them no more. For faith is not a wauering opinion,Faith what▪ but à cer­taine knowledge of the free promise; and à firme confidence that sinnes be forgiuen, for Christ his sake.Faith wher­vpon groun­ded. This faith, as touching the cer­taintie thereof, dependeth both vpon euident testimonies of the Scriptures, vpon parables, and vpon approued examples: but as tou­ching confidence, it resteth onelie vpon the merite of Christ.Rom. 4, 7. Paul after Dauid, saith: Bles­sed are theie whose iniquities are forgiuen, 8. and whose sinnes are couered. Psa. 32, 1. 2. Blessed is the man to whome the Lord imputeth no sinne. And Christ doth saie,Matth. 9, 2. Sonne, be of good comforte, thie sinnes are forgiuen thee. Mark 5, 36. And to the ruler of the Syna­gogue the Lorde saith: Onelie beleeue. And to the woman which had an issue of bloud,Luk. 8, 48. Thie faith hath made thee whole. Mat. 18. 21. 22. &c. Among manie pa­rables, that is notable, which is in the 18. chap­ter of Matthewe, of him which did owe tenne thousand talentes, and hauing not wherewith to discharge, he was of meere grace forgiuen the debt.Luk. 7, 41. 42. Hitherto belongeth also the parable of the two debters; and of the prodigal sonne. [Page 326] Among examples,Luk. 15, 11. 12. &c. the most excellent is of the Theefe, whose sinnes were forgiuen him, with­out anie merites either going-before, or com­ming-afterward. I omit Dauid, Manasses, Pe­ter, Paul, Magdalene, and others.

With this faith of the remission of sinnes,1. Grace. two thinges are continualie ioined, which al­though theie differ from the faith of the re­mission of sinnes: yet can theie be separated at no time. And theie are, to speake with the Apostle, Grace, and Gifte; of which I wil speake more distinctlie, that we maie the bet­ter consider, what à great blessing faith of the free remission of sinnes is. Grace in this place is the verie iustification of à beleeuing man;Rom. 5, 16. 19. and from the cause is so caled. For Paul in the 5. Chapter vnto the Romanes doeth saie so, where he compareth sinne and grace together. The iudgement came of one offence vnto condem­nation: but the grace of manie offences vnto iusti­fication. And, As by the offence of one, the fault came on al men to condemnation: So by the iustifi­eng of one, the benefite abounded toward al men, to the iustification of life. So that with faith of ye remission of sinnes, grace, wherebie we are iu­stified, and accepted before God, is ioined: al which are comprehended in the definition of iustification.Iustification what; Which is defined to be, An ab­solution of him from sinne that beleeueth in Christ, an imputation of righteousnes, & à receiuing vnto [Page 327] eternal life, freelie for Christ his sake. When I saie, for Christ, I include the merites of Christ on­lie. And although the imputatiō of Christ his righteousnes, be the forme of our iustification before God: yet because these three benefites do necessarilie concur together in our iustifi­cation, I haue included them within the com­passe of the definition.

Whosoeuer do either folow the righteous­nes of workes;Against the righteous­nes of workes. or compound righteousnesse of faith and workes together, theie doe peruert the word of God. For Paul writing vnto the Philippians doth on this wise distinguish the righteousnesse of workes from the righteous­nesse of faith.Phil. 3, 7. The thinges that were vantage vnto me, 8. 9. the same I counted losse for Christe his sake. Yea, doubtlesse, I thinke all thinges but losse for the excellent knowledge sake of Christ Iesus my Lord, for whome I haue counted al thinges losse, & doe iudge them to be dongue, that I might winne Christ, and might be found in him, that is, not ha­uing mine owne righteousnes, which is of the Law, but that which is through the faith of Christe. What I praie could be more plainelie saide? Paule here compareth two righteousnesses together: one hee saieth is manns proper­lie, the which hee calleth the righteousnesse of the lawe, it is in deede the righteousnesse of man, as farre-forth as man doth endeuour to fulfil the same, although he can neuer [Page 328] perfectlie fulfill the same; and it is also the righteousnes of the lawe, because it is required of the lawe: the other he saith is of God, and is obteined by faith; it is of God, because God of meere grace imputeth it, and giueth it to man; and it is also through faith, for that it is obtei­ned by faith,Rom. 10, 4. wherbie Christ is thought to be the end of the lawe for righteousnes vnto euerie one that beleeueth. Which two righteousnesses he maketh so contrarie, that together theie can not stand. For he which by the workes of the law seeketh the righteousnesse, wherbie he maie stande boldlie in the presence of God, is voide of the righteousnesse of faith: and contrariwise who so dependeth vpō the righ­teousnesse of faith, doth not thinke at al that hee is iustified by the lawe. And al­though there is but one righteousnes, which consisteth in the perfect obedience of the law: yet in respect of the diuers manner of iustifi­cation, it is saide to be twofolde. For he that dischargeth, and by his workes fulfilleth the lawe, which thing Christ onelie hath done, is iustified after one sorte: and he, which of him­selfe fulfilleth not the lawe, but beleeueth on Christe, who hath fulfilled the same, that the obedience of the lawe done by Christ maie bee imputed vnto him for righteous­nesse, that so he maie haue what the lawe re­quireth, euen the righteousnesse of the lawe, [Page 392] yea and with righteousnesse life, is iustified after another. So that in the manner of obtei­ning the righteousnes of the lawe, the diffe­rence is. For he that doeth the lawe, obteineth righteousnes one waie; and he that beleeueth, another. And yt mortal man can obtaine the same by doing, but onelie by beleeuing, Paul sheweth at large, especiallie in his Epistles vn­to the Romanes, Gal. & Ephesians, that maruel it is howe men can be so frowarde, as to resist the manifest trueth of God.Rom. 3, 28. What can bee saide more plainelie? Wee conclude, that à man is iustified by faith without the workes of the law, To wit done of our partes? What more eui­dentlie?Gal. 2, 21. If righteousnes bee by the law, then Christ died without à cause. What more distinctlie? Not of workes, Ephes. 2, 8. 9. but through faith, it is the gift of God, least anie man should boast himselfe. Fi­nalie what more absolutelie?Rom. 10, 4. Christ is the ende of the lawe for righteousnesse vnto euerie one that beleeueth, that is, Christ hath so fulfilled the lawe, that euerie one which beleeueth, is righ­teous through his obedience.Rom. 1, 16. Againe, The Gospel is the power of God vnto saluation to euery one that beleeueth, 17. for the iust shal liue by faith. In this most manifest trueth, rest wee our selues, & leaue we their subtilties to Sophisters, wher­in they both miserablie intangle themselues, and curssedlie seduce others, that committe themselues to such schoole-masters.

[Page 330] They which compounde righteousnesse of faith and workes together,Against the righteous­nes of faith and workes together. as of the partes thereof, are better liked of the vnlearned, es­pecialie of politike men ignorant of the gos­pel. But the error of these euen by one place of Paul, as it were by à thunder-bolt frō hea­uen,Rom. 10, 3. wee maie ouerthrowe. They being igno­rant, saith hee, of the righteousnes of God, (that is of the righteousnes of faith,) and going about to stablish their owne righteousnes, haue not sub­mitted themselues to the righteousnes of God, that is, they are not capable of the righteousnes of faith, who withall seeke righteousnes from the lawe. For Christ is the end, that is, the fulfil­ling and perfection of the lawe for righteousnes vn­to euerie one that beleeueth.

Faith then alone excludeth all merite, and al workes of man from the causes of our iu­stification before God; and dependeth vppon Christ alone, who imputeth the obedience of the law to the beleeuing man, yt he maie haue that which the lawe requireth, to wit, righte­ousnes; which thing this argument also of Paul in the 3. chap. vnto the Galathians, doeth eui­dentlie confirme in these wordes:Gal. 3, 11. 12. And, that no man is iustified by the law in the sight of God, it is euident: for the iust shal liue by faith. And the law is not of faith: but the man that shal doe those things, shal liue in them. The argu­ments of the aduersaries against the doctrine of iustification.

The aduersaries nowe in alleadging for [Page 331] their side against vs, the Apostle Iames, varie not from their olde wont. For neglecting the the most constant agreement of the whole scripture, and of al the sainctes, of Moses, the prophetes, of Christe, and of the Apostles, they wrest à doubtful saying verie subtiltie a­gainst vs.The true sense of S. Iames tou­ching works. The sense whereof would they seeke at the occasion, and end whie it was written, they shoulde finde that Iames disputeth not of our iustification before God, but of the de­claration of our iustification before men, and that against hypocrits, who by their false, and dead faith, or shadow of faith, did thinke thē ­selues righteous; and yet in the meane while defiled themselues with al manner sinnes, and wickednes. Thē, seeing that the word Faith is not taken in yt sense of the Apostles Paul, and Iames, they do oppose thēselues against ye spi­rit of god, who out of their saying do seek cō ­trarieties. They alledge also other places, such as concerne rewarding of good works; rende­ring to euerie man according to his deeds; the blessednes promised to the poore in spirit, to the meeke, to peace-makers, to such as endure persecution &c. But al those, and the like say­ings are not contrarie to our iudgement, if any wil rightlie distinguish betwene ye causes, and effectes of iustification, & the qualities of the iustified. For it is one thing to speake of the reward of obedience, and of the qualities of those who are alreadie iustified through [Page 332] faith; and another thing of the causes of the matter, that is of iustification. Againe it is one thing, to vse the wordes of Bernarde, to speake of the causes of gouernement, another of the waie to the kingdome. Also it is one thing to speake of the essential principles of à thing, another of the principles of knowledge. But they ob­iect against vs, as à strong buclar, the saying of Christ,Mat. 19, 17. If thou wilt enter into life, keepe the commaundementes. That is, fulfill the lawe. I aunswere: Christ shewed à most readie waie vnto life, euen the keeping of the commaun­dementes, or fulfilling of the lawe. But for that the fault is in vs, that wee cannot fulfill the lawe,Rom. 10, 4. Christ is become the ende of the lawe for righteousnes vnto euerie one that beleeueth. And this is it which the same Paul saith in another place,Rom. 3, 31. Through faith wee establish the lawe, euen because through beleefe wee ob­taine that which the lawe requireth, namelie righteousnes.

The gift which we saide is conioined with the faith of remission of sinnes,Gifte. is the giuing of the holie Ghost, whereby the man iustifi­ed onelie by faith, is regenerated, or sanctifi­ed, that is, is mortified, & quickened, and be­commeth à newe man, purposing thence­forwarde, as much as in him is, to order his life according to the rule of Gods worde. So that this gift, is the cause and beginning [Page 333] of à newe life,Luk. 1, 74. and obedience. For wee are not iustified freelie by faith, to the ende wee shoulde hence-forth liue to sinne, but that de­liuered from sinne,75. wee shoulde serue God, in righteousnes, and holines, all the daies of our life. For Zacharias in his songe maketh this to bee the ende of the knowledge of saluati­on concerning the remission of sinns, through the tender mercie of our God.

This ende of iustification Paule setteth in the 6. vnto the Romanes, where by most e­uident argumentes he sheweth that sanctifica­tion is ioined with iustification.

And thus much briefelie touching ye grace of iustification, and of the gifte of sanctifica­tion, the which are linked with the faith of re­mission of sinnes: and can no more be seuered from the same, than maie heate from fire, or the beame from the sunne. Whereby it is ap­parent that the Papistes offer vs great iniurie in saying, that we do abolish good works, and loase yt bridles to men, because we saie that by faith alone wee are iustified. For they marke not howe wee doe put a difference betweene the proper benefite of Christ, and our duetie which is ioined with faith. But of iustificati­on, God willing, wee will speake more at large in the exposition of the last verse of this Psalme, the sundrie sorts of testimonies which are commonlie handled in this controuersie, [Page 334] being distinguished.

The thirde place in the application of Christ wee ascribed to the sacramentse,3. How by the sacra­ments we maie applie the sacrifice of Christ to our selues. which not onelie do offer the merites of Christ, the priest, as the word doeth: but also as seales doe assure thē vnto vs, if so be the merits of Christ be reteined fast in the harts through faith. For as without faith the word doth not applie the merites of Christ: so without faith (I speake of the elder sorte) the sacramentes doe no good. The sacraments which Christ hath cōmended to his Church be two,Two, & no [...]oe sacra­ments. to wit, Baptisme, & the Lords supper: wherof baptisme is à sacrament of the entrance into Christianitie,Baptisme whie but once mini­stred to mā, & what i [...] signifieth. & therefore is but once takē, as Christ died but once for vs. For as baptisme is an effectuall token of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ: so is it à sacrament of the couenant, which God ente­reth-into with the baptized, touching ye pur­ging of sinnes, and our reconciliation through Christ; so is it also à signe of repentance, and of the crosse, and à testimonie of the resur­rection to come.

And the Lord his supper is a sacrament of the confirmation and conseruation of Christi­anitie;The L. Sup­per what is signifieth; whie often receaued. yea and a remembrance of the couenant established through the blood of Christ. Fur­thermore it is the meate whereby we are spi­ritualie nourished in the bodie of Christ, & therefore often it ought to be receaued. The [Page 335] summe of al is this, that the sacrament of the newe testament is both an externall signe of the couenant concerning our free iustificati­on before God through the sacrifice of Christ; and also a testifying, and confirmation of the faith, & righteousnes of Gods people to him warde.

CHAP. 40.
Of the perpetual vse of the sacrifice of Christ both in the conscience; in the whole course of our life; and at the houre of death.

AND although the vse of the sacrifice of Christ, is wel nigh seene in the applicati­on: yet the efficacie and power thereof is more apparent, when the knoweledge is reduced vnto practise as it were. This practise hath place in the conscience of euerie man; in the whole course of life; & at the agonie of death.

The conscience of each man is stricken sore with a deadlie wounde,The consci­ence healed by the sa­crifice of Christ. vntil it bee healed by the application of physike, with Christ alone the Physition doeth minister by his worde & spirit.Mar. 2. 17. In which respect he calleth himselfe the Physition of soules. So yt when the conscience is stricken with ye remēbrance of sinne, it must be healed by the faith of Christ his sacrifice: [Page 336] which if it be liuelie; it be sprinckeleth the cō ­science with the most comfortable balme of the holie spirite, wherewithal it is healed, & made quiet, so that now it is iocound, and me­rie, and reioiceth as it were in the crosse of Christ, whereas before it was troubled and greatlie vexed. Whence proceedeth that say­ing of the triumphing conscience in Bernard: Of the remission of sinnes, saith hee, I haue an vn­doubted argument, euen the passion of Christ. For the voice of his bloode crieth more shrillie, than did the bloode of Habel, crying in the heartes of the elect, the forgiuenesse of all sinnes. For he was betraied for our offences. And no doubt, his death is of more power, and more effectuall to helpe vs, than our sinnes to hurt vs. Such à conscience is neither broken with the threates of the lawe, (for it knoweth howe it is not vnder the law, but vnder grace;) nor yeeldeth to the suggestions of satan (for it knoweth, howe the Prince of this worlde is alreadie cō ­demned;) nor is moued with the argumentes of reason (for it knoweth the power of him which hath promised, and therefore glorifi­eth him.Phil 3, 20.) To conclude it resteth quietlie in Christ,21. looking for à ful redemption through the comming of the Sonne of God, who shal change our vile bodie, that it maie be fashioned like vnto his glorious bodie for euermore.

Whence this same confidence of the hea­led [Page 337] and quiet conscience doth arise, the epi­stle vnto the Hebrewes teacheth, where it is saide, We are assured that we haue à good consci­ence in al things, Heb. 13, 18. desiring to liue honestlie. There­fore as the cause & foundation of à good con­science, is not our owne worthines (for by na­ture wee are sinners, and vnworthie;) nor me­rites (for of our selues we deserue nothing but death;Esai. 64, 6.) nor anie vertue of our owne (for al our righteousnes is as filthie cloutes) but euen meere faith in Christ which purgeth it by his bloode from dead workes, through whome we haue peace with God:Heb. 9, 14. So the purpose of the same is in all thinges,Rom. 5, 1. with all men, and in all acti­ons to walke vprightlie, namelie by declining from that which is euil, and doing that which is good. For continualie it thinketh vppon à newe life in Iesus Christ; it alwaies detesteth the coate defiled of the fleshe; and euermore delighteth in that white garment which in Baptisme is put on.Gal. 3, 17. For al wee that are bapti­zed into Christ, haue put on Christ. Which thing Dauid in the spirit did beholde, when he said, Wash me, Psal. 51, 7. and I shal bee whiter than snowe, to wit, through the ornament of righteousnes of the Messiah, as with a most white garment, being first purged from sinne through his bloode. Of this faith and conscience that sinne is blot­ted-out, ariseth a care of wel-doing in Da­uid, [Page 338] according to that,Psal. 119, 112. I haue applied mine heart to fulfil thy statuts alwaie, euen vnto the end. And Paul saith,1. Tim. 1, 18. 19. Fight à good fight, hauing faith & à good conscience.

In the whole course of this life, wee maie beholde à goodlie, and an especial vse of the sacrifice of Christ, not onelie in aduersitie, but also in prosperitie. In aduersitie there is none so good à remedie as ye sacrifice of Christ. For as aduersitie doeth put thee in minde of thy sinne, either lurking, or manifest: so the sacri­fice of Christ apprehended by faith, doth cer­tifie thy conscience both of the forgiuenes of sins, whereof ariseth spiritual comfort in al af­fliction; and also of the conformitie of the e­lect with the son of God. For so it hath plea­sed the wisedome of God, that he wil haue his elect like to his sonne, but in the crosse, and also in glorie.2. Tim. 2, 12 And this Paul affirmeth, saying, If we suffer with him, we shal also raigne with him. Hitherto also maketh the imitation of Christ his example in the crosse, which Peter com­mendeth vnto vs in these wordes:1. Pet. 2, 21. Christ suffe­red for vs, leauing vs an ensample that we shoulde folow his steppes. Read mine annotations vpon the 2. chapter of the first epistle of Peter.

In prosperitie there is more daunger. For al­beit aduersitie do bring-done manie: yet pro­speritie doth puffe-vp moe. According to this of the Poët, The minds of man through prosperi­tie [Page 339] waxe wanton often-times; The minde of à godlie wise man in prosperi­tie. Againe, The minde lifted-vp through prosperitie, remembreth neither death, nor what may happē, nor anie measure at al. What then shal à godlie man doe in this case? Foure things he shal doe. First let him waie with himselfe the things which are called pro­sperous in this world; and consider what they are in them selues; Secondarilie, let him thinke what a perilous thing it is to enioie prosperi­tie, if the mind be not godlie disposed; Third­lie, let him compare al the cōmodities of this worlde, with the blessednes to come, which Christ hath purchased for vs by his death; and last of al, let him aduisedlie consider, whether it be more behoueful to enioie prosperitie of this life with hazard of the soule, than to re­nounce them, if occasion serue, for Christ his sake. Therfore seeing our flesh is ticled, & like à wild horse beginneth to winch by prosperi­tie, let à godlie man thinke with himself, first, howe vncertaine, brittle, mortal, temporal, fle­ting, & transitorie ye prosperitie of this world is, which manie enioieng at their hartes desire, be for al that in verie deed most miserable: se­condlie, let him thinke yt it hath more deceipt than pleasure. For the pleasure which ariseth thereof, is like à serpent murthering the soule; counsailing proudlie and va [...]elie; euen the spirite of couetousnes, and gluttonie. This serpent lurking in the most secrete corners [Page 340] of the minde, seeketh not but euen destructi­on. Whereby it is apparent that prosperitie doeth more hurt the minde, than doeth ad­uersitie the bodie. Thirdlie, let a godlie man thinke with himselfe that so great ods there is betweene the felicitie which Christe hath purchased for his beloued, and the prosperi­tie of this world; as is betweene a minute of an houre, and eternitie, betweene death and life, betweene miserie and happines. For as the prosperitie of this life, dependeth vpō a reed: so the happines promised in Christ is vphol­den by the euerlasting trueth of God, that it is vnpossible that they shoulde bee deceiued of their hope, which continue in the feare of God vnto their liues ende. Fourthlie, of these things let a godlie mā gather, how it is a much better, and blessed thing to renounce world­lie goods, as far as godlie & christianitie they stand not according to Gods word, thā for thē to bring the soule into ye danger of damnation. To conclude that wee bee neither puffed-vp, nor carried-quite from God by prosperitie, there is no such thing, as to call into minde the humiliation of the sonne of God vppon the crosse, who therefore was humbled, that he might exalt vs, if so be we do humble our selues vnder the mightie hand of God, and are not ashamed of the crosse of Christ.1. Pet. 5, 6. For whoso­euer exalteth himselfe, shal be brought lowe, and [Page 341] he that humbleth himself, Luk 14, 11. shal be exalted. We are therefore to take special heede, least our flesh through prosperous successe of things, do de­ceaue and kil vs being taken with a certaine baite. For that serpent which beguiled Euah of his subtiltie, snatcheth euerie occasion to withdrawe vs from Christ,1. Cor. 1, 26. and setteth vppon the principal part of man, to destroie it with prosperitie. And therefore saith Paul, Brethren you see your calling, howe that not manie wise men after the fleshe, not manie mightie, not manie no­ble are called. For to the destruction of man sa­than abuseth these three things, namelie wise­dome, power, and nobilitie, (of which sprin­geth both the pleasure of the bodie, and the pride of minde,) which if the foolish once get, they think themselues happie and blissed mē. So then against this tentation oppose ye crosse of Christ, without which al wisedome is but meere foolishnesse; all might is but weake­nesse; all nobilitie is but ignominie; and all pleasure is but the food of death. For al these mixed with too much bitternes, haue an ende with this life. If therefore thou wouldest haue true wisedom,Col. 2, 3. true might, true nobilitie, true pleasure and glorie, seeke them in Christ alone, & thou shalt find, in whom are hid al the treasures of celestial restes.

To conclude, at the point of death, the sight of the prieste Christ with his sacrifice [Page 342] taketh awaie all feare of death; and maketh à mā no more to dread death than a sweet sleep. Whereof it is that a godlie man desireth death euen as à passage out of these miseries vnto e­uerlasting life. Then shal he find the saying of Christ to be true,Iohn. 8, 52. If à man keepe my worde, hee shal neuer tast death. Hence proceedeth yt wil­lingnes in manie of the Martyrs, who had in minde Christ not onelie that died, but also yt did rise againe, by whose power we shal be rai­sed vnto immortalitie; and our soules in the meane space, euen vntil the daie of the laste iudgement shal possesse the ioies of heauen with the chast spirits, and then ioined to their bodies shal enioie the sight of God, & immor­tal glorie for euer and euer. And therefore it is not without iust cause,Reue. 14, 13 said both in the Reue­latiō, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord; and also by Dauid,Psa. 116, 15 Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saincts.

Thus hitherto we haue spokē concerning the propitiatorie sacrifice of Christians, & of such things as do seeme to make for the plane declaration of the same: nowe wee are brieflie to speake of the other sacrifice of Christians, which they cal Euchatistical.

CHAP. 41.
1. Of the Priestes of the newe Testament, howe they be consecrated; 2. the couenant betweene God, and them; 3. The excellencie of the Priesthood; 4. What is Eucharistical sacrifice; 5. Whie so called; 6. The kindes thereof; 7. Mini­sters of the Gospel, whie and howe Priestes.

THE Apostle Peter applied to such as doe conuert both from the Iewes and the Gen­tiles, Exod. 19, 5. the promise of the Lorde which is in the 19. of Exodus, to this purpose: If yee wil heare my voice in deede, and keepe my couenant, then yee shal bee my chiefe treasure, aboue al people, though al the earth bee mine.9▪ Yee shalbe also vn­to mee à kingdome of Priestes, and an holie na­tion, à peculiar people, that yee maie shew-forth the vertues of him that hath caled you out of dark­nes into his maruelous light. Out of these words, to omit other places, it is manifest, that all Christians bee Priestes to offer sacrifices of thankesgiuing and praise vnto God.

Firste therefore it is to bee noted,Ephes. 2, 3. that as by nature wee bee sinners, and the children of wrath: So by our owne strength, wor­thinesse, and merites wee can chalenge no­thing at Gods hande. And therefore, [Page 344] as by that onelie sacrifice of Christ, wee bee reconciled: so of his goodnes wee enter into the order of priestes, and are consecrated to him for to dedicate our selues, and al ours vnto the glorie of God.

This our inauguration into ye priesthood,How Chri­stians are made priests. be­cause it is merlie spiritual & internal, is wroght by a secrete maner, how it maie be declared, af­ter à sort by cōparing the truth vnto ye shadow. As then they which were to be made priestes out of the tribe of Leui, did first of al washe their bodies with water; secondlie, put vppon them the garmentes appointed of God; third­lie did annoint their heades; and fourthlie fil­led their hands: so they which shal be priestes in the newe Testament be spiritual ordained. For first the high priest euē Christ, doth wash them both with water and bloode;Ephes. 5, 26. Hee clean­seth vs, saith Paul, by the washing of water throgh the word, (to wit, of God instituting, & ordai­ning baptisme:) & Ioh. in the Reuelatiō saith, He hath loued vs, Reuel. 1, 5. 6. and washed vs from our sinnes in his bloode, and made vs kinges and Priestes vn­to God euen his father. Secondlie, the same Christ adorneth vs with spiritual garmentes, much whiter and cleaner than those Leuiti­cal garmentes.Rom. 6, 3. For so Paul saith: Alyee that are baptized into Christe, haue put-on Christe. And hauing him vpon vs,Gal. 3, 27. wee seeme white, that is righteous and holy in the sight of God. [Page 345] Of this apparel the Psalme meaneth, where it is said,Psal. 132, 9. Let thie priests be clothed with righteous­nes, and let thie saintes reioice. Thirdlie theie are annointed not with material, & fleeting oyle, as Leuitical priests, but with inward, spiritual and immortal.2. Cor. 1, 21. Whereof Paul speaketh, saieng, It is God who establisheth vs with you in Christ, 22. & hath annointed vs. Who hath also sealed vs, and hath giuen the earnest of the spirite in our heartes. Of this ointment wherewith Christe annoin­teth vs, we be called Christians, and Priests, & Kinges, and Prophets. Marueilous is the force of this spiritual vnction.

For as the nature of the oile, wherewithal the Priestes of the olde Lawe were annointed, is to shine and to burne: so the holie Spirite, wherebie we are annointed for Priestes, both lighteneth our mindes, and setteth our heartes on fire; that both the minde maie vnder­stand what is good, and behooueful, and the heart zealouslie couet after the same. And this commeth to passe, when through faith conceaued by the preaching of the worde, we bee rauished wholie with admiration of the great mercie of God, who hath called vs out of darkenes into his marueilous light.1. Pet. 2, 9. Last of al, theie fil their handes, that is, theie shewe them-selues readie to offer vnto the Lorde.

For nowe they are no more their owne [Page 346] men, but consecrated to God theie surcesse to liue, and theie dedicate all the actions of their life vnto the seruice of God.

And being thus ordained, The coue­nant be­tweene God and Christi­ans Priests. we haue a certaine couenant also concluded betweene God and vs; what that is I wil shew out of the words of Malachie: The words of the Prophet are these, My couenant was with him of life and peace, and I gaue him feare,Mal. 2, 5. and he feared me, and was afraid before my name.6. The lawe of truth was in his mouth, and there was none iniquitie founde in his lips; he walked with me in peace and equitie, and did turne manie awaie from iniquitie.7. For the Priestes lips should preserue knowledge, and theie should seeke the lawe at his mouth: for he is the messenger of the Lorde of hostes.

And although the Prophete here speaketh of the Leuitical priestes: yet it is fitlie applied also to al Christians, who are in the sight of God, much more excellent priestes, being roi­al, than were the Leuitical. Out of which wordes of the Prophet, the forme of the coue­nant maie thus be made. As the Lorde promi­seth life and peace: so doth he require also feare through faith. For as in al couenantes there is à mutual obligation: so here too God promiseth peace and life, which two thinges are opposed against the wrath of God, and e­uerlasting death. But the partes of the coue­nant, [Page 347] in respect of our selues are manie in this place,Paries of the couenāt betweene God and Christian Priestes. which naturalie do hang together. The first whereof is à syncere feare of God spring­ing of Faith, which the Prophete meaneth when he saith: The beginning of wisedome is the feare of the Lorde. Psa. 111. 10. Againe, The holie feare of the Lorde endureth for euer. The second the lawe of truth in his mouth, that is true, holie, & sounde doctrine. And although eùerie Chri­stian màie not teach publiquelie: yet is it ne­cessarie that all Christians do both knowe, and confesse too the doctrine of Christ.

The third; and there is none iniquitie founde in his lips, that is, he shunneth false and forged doctrine, yea and abhorreth as the pestilence whatsoeuer commeth not from the mouth of the Lorde. And therefore Christe saith to all: Beware of false Prophetes. Matt. 7, 15. The fourth, He wal­ked in peace and equitie, that is, he studied to order his life according to the rule of my iu­stice, by keeping peace, and equitie with his neighbours. And this parte of the couenant Christ also and the Apostles doe applie to all Christians. The fifte, He turned manie awaie from iniquitie, to wit both by word, by deede, & by example, & this euerie man wil grant al Christians ought to do. To conclude, as God promiseth life and peace: so we are bounde a­gaine to him through faith and obedience.

Moreouer with the priesthood of Christi­ans [Page 348] manie thinges are ioined, which make much for the knowledge of the dignitie, and excellencie thereof. But the special thinges are which Peter numbreth-vp, to wit, that Christians are,1. Pet. 2, 5. à spiritual house, à holie, and à roial Priesthood, 9. à chosen generation, an holie na­tion, à peculiar people, and that which passeth al,Rom. 9, 26. that theie are, and be called the children of the liuing God. Of this excellent dignitie of Chri­stians,Iohn 1, 12. Iohn speaketh, when he saith, To them that beleeue in his name, he gaue power to be the sonnes of God. Which sentence is both true­lie and elegantlie brought into these Verses, by Nonnus:

[...]
[...].

That is, to expresse them in à maner word for worde:

One happie state of heauenlie blisse to al gaue hee;
That sonnes of euerlasting God, theie might cald bee.

This honour which none sufficientlie can commend, ought both to reclaime vs from al filthinesse vnseemelie for the temple of God, vnseemelie for roial priestes, vnseemelie for à chosen generation, for an holie nation vnseemelie, vnseemelie for the peculiar peo­ple, and sonnes of God; and to prouoke vs also vnto the seruice of God, & continualie to offer acceptable sacrifice to God, throgh Iesus [Page 349] Christ. For of right our consecration into the priesthoode of Christ doth require the same.

Because we are priestes to offer sacrifices, not propitiatorie, which belonged onelie to Iesus Christ the hie priest; but Eucharistical, and those perpetual.

Wherefore, as the Leuites at certaine daies, & appointed houres did offer according vnto the Lawe of Moses, and after waited vntil their turne came, after the Ecclesiastical ordi­nance of Dauid: So are not Christian priestes to intermitte sacrifice, but continualie, and without ceassing theie must haue ful handes, and offer continual sacrifice vnto the Lorde.

What is Eucharistical sacrifice?Eucharisti­call sacri­fice what; The Eu­charistical sacrifice of Christians is euerie acti­on, and passion commanded of God, separa­ted from the prophane actions and passions of the world through saith, wherewithall as sea­soned with salt, it is inflamed and sanctified by the holie Ghoste, as by fire from heauen, and through the merite of Christe is accepted of God into glorie through ye same Iesus Christ. And this is called an Eucharistical sacrifice from the proper end thereof; because it is an oblation of our thankfulnes. For being recon­ciled to God, through the propitiatorie sacri­fice of Christ, we offer to him our obedience, we honor, & praise him, and continualie giue him thankes.

[Page 350] For Christ being apprehended by faith, gi­ueth the holie Ghost, which createth à newe heart within vs, and à willing minde, where­bie we offer this our gratefulnes to God.

Nowe it is necessarie that we consider why our obedience is called à sacrifice. For the ope­ning of this phraze wil notablie stir vs vp vn­to the studie of obedience.The workes of Christians whie called a sacrifice. So then the workes of Christians are called sacrifices by à certaine relation vnto the sacrifices of the olde Iewes. For as theie were commanded from heauen to the Priestes, were chosen, applied, sanctified, and accepted: so in our sacrifices it is necessa­rie that there be à commandement, à choise, an application, a sanctificatiō, and that they be ac­cepted of God. In ye old law it was not lawful to offer à sow, or anie vnclean beast by the law but onlie such as were cleane according to the lawe: So the workes that Christians should offer, must not be vncleane, that is either for­bidden by the worde of God, or hypocritical, or superstitious; but such as GOD comman­deth. Therefore the Lorde saith by the Pro­phet: Walke in my statutes. Secondlie, as the cleane lambe which should be offered, was se­parated from the rest of the flocke: So by faith our workes are to be separated from the like workes of prophane people. The Pharisee gaue almes, so did Cornelius the Courtier: yet was the Pharisees almes vncleane, & the cour­tiers [Page 351] cleane, because through faith it was sepa­rated from the almes of the Pharisee. Thirdlie, as the ceremonial sacrifice was applied to the altar by the hand of the priest beeing laide there-vpon: so our workes shal be applied to the altar through Christ, by whose handling they are sanctified. Fourthlie, as those olde sa­crifices were consumed with fire from heauen and sanctified, and so accepted: so our sacrifi­ces through the merite of Christ, inflamed by the holie Ghost, are sanctified with fire from heauen, and are accepted through Christe, as Peter saith. For seeing al our own obedience is vnperfect, & in euerie work we offend partlie by omitting somewhat, partlie by doing more than we ought (for at no time our obedience is perfect, and ful) it cannot be that our sacrifices of them-selues should please God. Wherefore as through the merite of Christ theie are san­ctified: so also through Christ, as Peter saith, theie are acceptable. For Christ maketh our obedience grateful, and deserueth, that our o­bedience both in the crosse, & also in the lawe of sacrifice is commended. So yt our sacrifices please not in respect of any excellencie of me­rit, but throgh Christ, in whō God waieth our works, yt he maie accept them as most worthie sacrifices. For as the faultie sacrifice of the olde people, which came to the altar through error, & touched ye altar, was not chāged for a better, [Page 352] but was taken as purged, and holie by reason it had touched the holie place: so our workes, albeit theie are verie faultie, yet become theie cleane, and apte for holie sacrifice, and accep­table to GOD through touching our altar Christ, who through faith is touched. And although the summe of the doctrine of the Christians sacrifices maie be vnderstoode, by that wich is spoken: yet to make it the more euident, we wil more particularlie entreate of them, that it maie appeare howe theie a­gree together, and folowe each of other.

Among the sacrifices of Christians in the first place,Kindes of Eucharisti­cal sacrifices. is the offering of our selues, which is done in Baptisme, and answereth to the wa­shing which was vsed at the consecration of Leuitical Priestes.1. We offer sacrifice as Baptisme. For through baptisme we are visiblie, and sacramentalie seuered from the prophane world, applied to God, laide vpon the altar Iesus Christ, & sanctified both by renouncing the diuel and al his workes, & by promising due obedience vnto God for the aduauncement of his glorie.

In the second place of the elder sort,2. Christians do offer sa­crifice when theie dailie crucifie their wicked affections. there is required à continual, and perpetual oblation as it were, wherebie we offer our selues who­lie, and al that we haue, vnto God. Of this sacrifice speaketh Paule, where he saith, I beseech you brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye giue-vp your bodies à liuing sacrifice, Rom. 13, 1. holie, [Page 353] and acceptable vnto God, which is your reasonable seruing of God; and fashion not your selues like vnto this world, but be ye changed by the renuing of your minde, that ye maie proue what is the good wil of God, acceptable, and perfect. In these wordes Paule doth notablie expresse what it was that shadowed the sacrifices of the olde lawe. For as the burnt-sacrifices did wholie sauor of the holie fire: so our mindes must be wholie infla­med by the holie Ghost, which is the heauen­lie fire; that both whatsoeuer is of the flesh, maie by little and little be consumed, and be brought vnto deade ashes, as it were, and that which is spiritual and of the minde, maie be made truelie spiritual and heauenlie, tho­rough the force of that celestial fire. A sha­dowe whereof was the prohibition to eate porke and the killing beastes▪ For as porke betokeneth vncleannesse, from which we must abstaine; and beasts killed did signi­fie that beastlie affections should be killed: So the minde and will must be renued, that it maie allowe, chuse, and doe such thinges as please God. And because al sacrifices of Chri­stians ought to be seasoned by faith as with salt, and laide vpon the altar, which is Christ, therefore Paul beeing iustified through faith, commendeth this kinde of sacrifice. Here would be noted howe fitlie the name of sa­crifice agreeth here-vnto, and howe aptlie [Page 354] Paul doth applie the same. First he requireth that we separat our selues through faith frō ye prophane gentiles,Rom. 12, 2. whē he saith; Fashiō not your selues like vnto this world; Secondlie he wil haue vs to be applied to god, whē he saith, But be ye chāged by the renuing of your mind, which chāge is made through the spirite of regeneration; Thirdlie, he wil haue vs to giue vp our selues à li­uing sacrifice vpon our onelie Altar, which is Christe. For as in the earthlie Ierusalem there was onelie but one Altar for Sacrifi­ces: So likewise in the heauenlie there is but one, vppon which we doe offer, when we depend vpon the merite of Christe that our Sacrifice maie be holie, and acceptable vnto GOD, which we saide was to haue the fourth place in our Sacrifices. But what is the cause whie GOD requreth this kinde of Sacrifice at our handes? It is necessarie that as sinne made vs mortal, so we likewise slaie sinne, by the vertue of Christ his death, yea, and kil wicked affections in our selues. For if Christe on our behalfe woulde so doe▪ howe much more are we bounde for his sake willinglie to offer this Sacrifice?Rom. 6, 10. In that he died, saith the Apostle, He died once to sinne: but in that he liueth, 11. he liueth to GOD. Like­wise thinke yee also, that yee are dead to sinne, but are aliue to GOD in Iesus Christe our [Page 355] LORDE. This death of sinne is caled of Christe,Luk. 9, 23. A denying of our selues; of Paul, A Sacrifice. Rom. 12, 1. Howe necessarie nowe this kinde of Sacrifice is, Christe sheweth in saying,Luk. 9, 23. If anie man wil come after me, let him de­nie himselfe, and take vp his Crosse daielie, and folowe me.

The thirde place among the Sacrifices of Christians I ascribe vnto the Sacrifice of praise:3. Christiā [...] do offer sa­crifice when theie praise God. which ought not to be separated from the former. Of this mention is made in the Psalme:Psal. 50, 23▪ 14. He that offereth praise, shal glorifie me; Againe, Offer vnto GOD praise. And the Prophet Hosea,Hos. 14, 3. We wil render the calues of our lippes. Then we doe offer the Sa­crifice of praise, when we acknowledge God to be the fountaine of al good thinges; and when by our confession we praise and glorifie him. By which kinde of Sacrifice the fleshe is bereaued of al glorie of deserte, wisedome, righteousnesse, power, &c. and it is ascribed to God alone. Which is then rightlie offered when through faith that praise is separated from the praise of the Pha­risee, and through the same faith is brought vnto GOD, and laide vpon our Altar, that is, dependeth vpon the merite of Christe; wherbie it is acceptable and grateful to God. A part of this sacrifice I made confession of the [Page 356] faith, especialie in ye time of persecution, which confession is necessarie in foure respects.Confession of the faith in the time of persecuti­on, whie ne­cessarie; First, that God maie be honoured; Secondlie, that the trueth maie be defended; Thirdlie, that the godlie maie be confirmed; Lastlie, that the wicked through the constancie of Christi­ans maie be conuerted, and saued. For these causes Paule saith,Rom. 10, 10. That with the mouth confessi­on is made vnto saluation.

In the fourth place set we the sacrifice of praier;4. Christians doe sacrifice when theie praie. which was signified by the perfume of the old Lawe, as Dauid interpreteth it, when he saith:Psal. 14, 2. Let my praier be directed in thie sight as incense; and the lifting-vp of my hands, as an eue­ning sacrifice. Reuel. 5, 8. And Iohn in the Reuelation; The Elders had seuen phials ful of odors, which are the praiers of the Saints. Mich. 6, 6. And the Prophet Micheas doth saie, Wherewith shal I come before the Lorde? 8. and, He wil that thou humble thy knee. Praier then made in the knowledge, and faith of the Sonne of God, is saide to be à sacrifice more sweete than anie incense. The name of sacrifice doth therefore agree to the praier of Christians, because through faith it is separa­ted from the praiers both of Iewes, Turkes, and other prophane people; and by the same it is brought, and presented before God, and laid-vpon the altar Christ, while it dependeth vpon his merit, and is set on fire by an ardent affection of the holie Ghost. Whereby it is ac­ceptable [Page 357] before God, and hearkened-vnto.

In the fift place followeth the sacrifice of repentance.5. Christians doe offer sa­crifice to God when theie repent vnfainedlie. For seeing the Saintes do dailie offend, they haue need dailie to repent, wher­by they both acknowledge their owne faults; and flee-backe through faith vnto their propi­tiation; and endeuor afterward to kepe them­selues frō al pollution of wickednes. So Dauid hauing committed adulterie, did vnfeignedlie repent, & offered to God the sacrifice of à cō ­trite spirit,Psal. 51, 17. and of an humbled minde. For so he saith: The sacrifices of God are à contrite spirit; à contrite and à broken heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. Isai. 57, 15. And in Isaiah the Lorde saith; I dwel with him that is of à contrite and humble spirite. Againe,Isai. 66▪ 2, To him wil I looke, euen to him that is poore, and of à contrie spirit, and trembleth at my wordes. This contrition, and this humiliation I take to be inward, namelie when we are true­lie touched with the sense of sinne, and vnfai­nedlie are humbled vnder the mightie hande of God, who threateneth euerlasting wrath, and malediction for our sinnes. This power of the worde of God Ieremiah the Prophete, sheweth by à double comparison, in these words: Is not my worde like à fire, saith the Lord; and like an hammar, Iere. 23, 29. that breaketh the stone? Moreouer, this contrition of the heart, and this humiliation is then an holie sacrifice to the honour of God, when through faith it is [Page 358] separated from worldelie sorrowe, such as Cains, Achitophels, and Iudas was, and when by the same faith it is laide vpon the altar Christ, by whose merite it is san­ctified, and accepted, as we see in Dauid. For he in the middest of al his vexations of minde, ranne vnto the mercie of God, and beleeued howe his sinne was pardoned through the sacrifice of Christ. This kinde of sacrifice proposeth plentiful store of com­forte before the eies of miserable sinners, which are griued with the heauie burthen of their sinnes. For when it telleth the sinner that à contrite and à sorrowful heart is in the nostrils of God as à sacrifice of sweete in­cense, it euidentlie sheweth both that our repentance pleaseth God; and that GOD earnestlie requireth the same; and that he wil also receiue such as vnfeinedlie repent into fauour againe. Let vs therefore be­ware that with Caine we saie not, Mine in­quitie is greater then Gods mercie: but with Augustine rather, Thou liest Caine; for grea­ter is Gods mercie, then the iniquitie of al sin­ners. And therefore let vs offer vnto God the sacrifice of à contrite and broken hearte, contrite with the hammer of the Lawe; broken vnder the mightie hande of GOD; and let vs beleeue that God for his Christs sake doth trulie pardon such as by true repen­tance [Page 359] forsake their sinnes.

Let the sixt kinde of sacrifice be obedience in the crosse,6. Christians do sacrifice, when theie suffer affli­ction pa­tientlie. and in euerie outward affliction. This obedience is likewise adorned with the name of sacrifice, that we may knowe how God liketh verie wel thereof. For, as the obe­dience of Christ in the crosse was à grateful sacrifice to God: so our obedience in al trou­bles pleaseth God, not for it selfe, but in re­spect of faith, whereby it is seuered from the punishments of the vngodly, is laide vpon the altar Christ, through touching of whom, it is sanctified, and accepted of God. So Iob se­parateth his affliction through faith from the afflictions of the wicked worlde, and presen­teth it before God▪ and burneth it vpon the al­tar Christ; while he dependeth vpon the me­rit Christ, which he testifieth he did, in these wordes;Iob. 19, 25. I am sure that my Redeemer liueth, which were the wordes of Faith, whereby Iobs obedience v [...]der the crosse was seaso­ned as with salte.

The seuenth sacrifice of Christians,7. The sea­uenth sacri­fice of Chri­stians, righ­teousnes in conuersatiō. maie be of righteousnesse, according to that: Offer the sacrifice of righteousnesse. By righteousnesse I vnderstande both generall, and particular righteousnesse, whereby the publike welfare is sought.Psal. 4, 5. The Lord preferreth mercie before the sacrifices of the olde law, when he saith: [Page 360] I desired mercie, Hos 6, 6. and not sacrifice. And in the E­pistle vnto the Hebrues;Heb 13, 16. To doe good, and to di­stribute forget not: for with such sacrifices, God is pleased. Vnder this kind the chastitie of Ioseph is comprehended. For Ioseph his chastitie tho­rough faith, differeth from the chastitie of Ze­nocrates, and through the same, he bringeth it before GOD, and seasoned with the salt of faith, he putteth it vpon the altar Christe: whereby it is both sanctified, and accepted of God, and adorned with great rewards.

The sacrifice of each mans calling occupi­eth the eight place.The 8. sa­crifice of Christians. For when the lawfull calling of euerie man is zealouslie exercised, through faith vnto the glorie of GOD, and profite of mankinde, it is à piece of iustice, which God vouchsafeth the name of sacrifice. Scipio fighteth for his countrie, and also Da­uid fighteth for his countrie: but Dauids wars enioined him of God, differ from the warres of Scipio; and for the Messiahs sake promised, he beleeueth his warlike paines are grateful, and acceptable to God.

Beside the aboue numbred kindes of sacri­fices, which are common to al Christians, of what state or degree soeuer they be, there is one more peculiar to the Ministers of the Gospel. Whereof Paule speaketh after this manner:Rom. 15, 15 Grace is giuen me of God, that I should be the minister of Iesus Christe, 16. toward the Gen­tiles, [Page 361] ministring the Gospel of God, that the offe­ring vp of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the holie Ghost. Here Paul allu­ding vnto the mysteries which were ministred by the Leuitical Priestes, saith, he doth mini­ster the Gospel of God, that is, doth make him selfe à Priest in the ministerie of the Gospel, while he bringeth the hearers of the Gospel, from the wickednes of the worlde, maketh them to obeie the wil of God, laieth them v­pon the altar Christ, by whose blood theie be purified, by whose obedience iustified, and by whose spirit theie are sanctified, that their sa­crifice maie be acceptable to God through Iesus Christ. Nowe seeing the like reason is of al the ministers of the Gospel, and the same ende, namelie to bring men vnto Christ, hauing renounced the vngodlines [...] of the world, that through the holie spirit theie maie be sanctified, to the ende their oblation maie be holie and accepted of God through Christ, it is manifest that theie maie fitlie be called Priestes, by which title both theie themselues are put in minde of the dignitie of their mi­nisterie, of the efficacie of the word, and of the courage of minde & constancie that is requi­red in so greate à place; and the hearers to re­ceaue much comfort, while theie perceaue that their obedience toward the Gospel is set forth with the title of sacrifice. Wherebie [Page 362] we maie vnderstand howe grateful the con­uersion of sinners,The mini­sters of the Gospel how and when priestes. is before God. As of­ten therefore as the ministers of the Gospel through sound doctrine either do conuert In­fidels vnto Christ, or reuoke such as goe a­straie, or lift vp those which were fallen, or cō ­uince ye obstinate, or finalie awake such as are secure and sluggish, theie do the office of gods priestes, and maie rightlie be caled the priests of God. Who as the Leuitical priestes vnder one hie priest, so theie vnder one Christ, the onlie propiciatorie sacrifice, doe solemnize the holie mysteries, teaching the Gospel of Christ. But then & not afore deserue theie this honorable title, when both by sound doctrine and holie conuersatiō theie set vpon the king­dome of Sathan, and builde vp of the temple of God▪ For it belongeth vnto the ministers of God not onelie by words to teach, but also by good workes to giue light vnto others, that therbie, namelie through synceritie of do­ctrine, and innocencie of life, as it were by two torches, they maie conduct mē out of ye king­dome of darknes into ye kingdome of light. So that theie are, as to teach the trueth of the gos­pel by words, so to expresse the same by their liues, that outwarlie men maie behold that with their eies in example, which by voice is vttered for the edification of their minds. For when theie teach trulie, but liue wickedlie, [Page 363] theie become guiltie of most horrible sins. For theie bring the gospel into contempt with the aduersaries of the same; theie make but à mock at Christ; theie condemne themselues while theie teach others; theie ouerthrow them­selues, while theie doe comfort others, theie slaie themselues, while theie threaten others; and finalie whereas theie shoulde be exam­ples to the flocke,1. Pet. 5, 3. theie infecte them with most contagious diseases. I ouer-passe here that most bitter reprehension in ye 50. Psalme, wherebie the Lorde himselfe doth sharplie take-vp these prophane teachers; the wordes be these:Psal. 50, 16 But vnto the wicked saide God, what hast thou to doe to declare mine ordinances, that thou shouldest take my couenantes in thie mouth, 17 seeing thou hatest to be reformed, and hast cast my wordes behind thee? Wherefore let both such as haue taken vpon them this holie calling, & such also as in time to come are to be called therevnto, consider, what à great accoūt theie shal render to God, if, forgetting the honour wherewithal God hath adorned them, theie discharge not their office faithfullie, both by teaching syncerelie, and liuing virtuouslie: contrariewise, what great and most ample re­wards God wil impart vpon them, if with that zeale, & godlines, which God requireth of thē, theie do their duties as Daniel writeth, Theie that be wise, 1 Dan. 12. 3. shal shine as the brightnes of the [Page 364] firmament; and they that turne manie vnto righ­teousnes, shal shine as the starres for euer and euer. Proceede we now.

CHAP. 42.
1. Of true happinesse, what it is; 2. The steppes therevnto; 3. Where the soules are, being sepa­rated from the bodies, and the happie state of the life to come; 4. Against the vaine imaginations of the Philosophers, concerning the true happines; 5. Who dwell in the House of God; 6. How God is serued in his House; 7. The per­petuitie of the same; 8. With the vse of the 4. verse.

The fourth verse.‘BLESSED ARE THEIE WHICH DWEL IN THINE HOVSE, FOR EVER AND E­VER THEIE WILL PRAISE THEE.’

THis verse teacheth vs three thinges.The summe of this verse. First how the Church of God, is happie & bles­sed; Secondlie, what special seruice God re­quireth of the Church; Thirdlie, that the Church is immortal, and shal euerlastinglie continue, which agreeth with the first verse. And because aboue vpon the first verse we haue spoken of the House of God (which is the Church) I wil not in this place discourse thereof at large.

[Page 365] But because this verse maketh mention of Blessednes, which thing man through the in­stinct of nature desireth (and is called of the Philosophers with one consent eudaimonia, & of diuines somtime felicitie, and somtime bles­sednes, I thinke it good in this place to speake somewhat touching the true felicitie of man: for which he was both at the first created, and afterward redeemed. And this is euidentlie to be seene both by our creation after the I­mage of our God, and also by the restoring of that same Image through Christ. And al­though al men doe grant, that the ende of mans nature, is to atteine a perfect state, which being atteined, it is iudged perfect and blessed: yet foulie haue diuers Philosophers erred in defining this perfect state of man, wherein the true felicitie doth consist. So that diuers and manifolde are the opinions of the Philosophers therabout: al which Platoes on­lie excepted, shal come to nothing, when we haue set downe ye true definitiō of happines, & showen for what thing chieflie man is borne.

Forasmuch as à miserable man and à blessed are contrarie,Who trulie happie. it cannot be doubted, but he rightlie and trulie maie be caled happie, who is not onelie without al sense of trouble, and sorrowe, and dreadeth none euil to come, but also which doth so abounde with store of al good thinges, that he can desire no [Page 366] more, being sure perpetuallie to possesse the good thinges wherewith he doth abounde. This is the definition of absolute and perfecte happinesse: nowe whoso bindeth himselfe with à right course to atteine the same, is cal­led happie, in respecte of the euent. By which definition it appeareth,God princi­palie and through himselfe happie. how God principal­lie and indeede through himselfe, is hap­pie. For, as he through himselfe is subiect to no miserie at al, and voide of al feare of e­uil: so he aboundeth with al good thinges. (for he is euen goodnes it selfe) and dreadeth no chaunge. Secondarilie, because God hath fashioned man after his owne image, his wil is that man should be blessed through partici­patiō of his blessednes. For, as the principal & chiefe bewtie of à godlie bodie is in the liue­lie, and true face indeede; and next in the i­mage and picture which doth represent the bodie: So mans nature, which is the image and portraiture of supernal happines, is then happie indeede, when it inioieth the possessi­on of this happinesse; which doubtlesse is not fraile, fleeting, or temporarie, but of con­tinuance, perpetual, and euerlasting. Wher­fore one maie rightlie define that to be ye end of man,End of man what. which maketh him perfect & blessed. The conditions of which ende are diuers, as that it is proper to man; that it belongeth to al men that beside the same nothing is to [Page 367] be desired; that it is voide of al trouble; that it is eternal; and neede not be feared that it can be taken awaie.

Now that the true blessednes of man con­sisteth in this ende, it is manifest out of the worde of God, which doth testifie how man was created after the image of God, & placed in Paradise. Which thing maie be seene also in ye natural appetite of euerie mā. For as Cicero saith,Fal of man. we al would be blessed. But because our first parents through their free wil did sinne, yeelding to the suggestions of Satan, in them and with them we fel from this state of happi­nes. For as the Prophet saith, Our iniquities haue separated betweene vs and our God. So that through sinne we are become of blessed ex­treemelie miserable, & so blinde, that of our selues we canne neither see, nor vnderstand the perfecte state of mans nature for which it was created. And hereof sprang so manie o­pinions of ye blinde Philosophers touching the true happines, in al ages. Wherefore God, of his infinite goodnes, taking pittie vpon vs, sent his Sonne the verie image of his owne substance, yt through him we might recouer the image after which we were made. For this his Son sheweth the readie waie, wherebie we maie returne vnto ye happines which was lost, the image of God being repaired within vs; wherebie as Iohn writeth,1. Iohn 3, [...]. we shalbe like to God [Page 368] for euermore, being ioined to ye chiefest bles­sednes, namelie to God himselfe, in whome who so doth abide without doubt he shal e­uerlastinglie be blessed, that is, be without al manner griefe, and feare of trouble, and shal abounde with goodnes and glorie, for euer & euer.

But what?An obiectiō. saith not our Lorde, Blessed are theie that mourne, Matth. 5, 4. 10. Blessed are theie which suf­fer persecution? Certainelie where mourning is and persecution, there also trouble is, & want of good thinges, & feare of greater miserie.

I answere:2. Tim. 2, 12 we must distinguish betweene the waie vnto happines, and the ful fruition of the same. While we liue in this worlde, we are in the waie either towarde endlesse mise­rie or eternal blessednesse; but our bodies be­ing raised againe, we shalbe either euerla­stinglie miserable, or euerlastinglie blessed. And thereof the state of our life is saide to be either happie, or wretched in respect of the e­uent. For which cause there is no truer hap­pines of this life, than that which beginneth e­uerlasting happines, & no truer miserie than yt which leadeth vnto euerlasting miserie. Wherfore, Christ saieing yt such as mourne are bles­sed; and yt such are blessed as suffer persecutiō for righteousnes sake, speaketh of them which are in ye waie to euerlasting blessednes, which afterward thei shal perfectlie inioie, whē toge [Page 369] with the sonne of God,2. Tim. 2, 1 [...] with whome theie haue suffered in the death, theie shal reigne in heauen. Wherebie it is apparent, what those phrazes of speech doe meane, in which godlie men are called blessed, namelie because theie are in the waie, and go-forward vnto that hap­pines, which theie begin in this world. There­fore saith Dauid,Psal. 119, 1. Blessed are they which are vp­right in the waie. And for instruction sake there maie foure steps of this waie be set-downe; of which in order we will entreate.

The first steppe,The first step vnto heauen. is to haue, and to heare the worde of God, that is, the Lawe, and the Gospel of Iesus Christ. By the one, name­lie the Lawe, we learne how miserable we are through sinne,Isai. 5▪ which hath separated betweene vs, and our God, the fountaine of true happi­nesse; by the other, to wit, the Gospel, howe blessed we shal be here-after, if we hearken vnto the worde which pointeth vnto Christ, the onelie waie to blisse. Without this step, none, be he neuer so wise, neuer so mightie, so noble, so rich, so at heartes ease and pleasure, can attaine so much as à smal hope of blessed­nesse. Wherefore when the Lorde saieth, Blessed are theie which heare the worde of God, and keepe it; Luk. 11, 28. And Dauid,Psal. 1, 1, 2. Blessed is the man which doth meditate in the Lawe of the Lorde daie and night; Psal. 119, 2. Againe, Blessed are theie which keepe his testimonies, and seeke him with their whole heart, [Page 370] theie doe point vnto this first steppe vnto blessednesse.

Philosophie,Excellencie of God his worde. and the wisedome of this world, be it highlie commended; yet what is it, being compared to this worde, which di­recteth vs vnto euerlasting happinesse? Philo­sophie,Worldlie wisedome. and worldlie wisedome, what else can it do, than rule this transitorie, which wee cal the natural life, which is contained within à verie smal compasse of time? But heauenlie wisedome sheweth vs the life of grace, which is immortal, and the beginning of happinesse. Hence then we maie see, and weie the worthi­nesse of the doctrine of the Church, which sheweth the waie vnto eternal life & blessed­nes to al men. But humane reason is much deceaued here. For when it seeth manie nati­ons of men at this daie to want the worde of God, it forgeth destinies, and is carried-awaie with Stoical imaginations, so that contrarie vnto Gods worde, it thinketh that God is an accepter of persons, and wil not the saluation of al men, but onelie of à fewe. When this was obiected to Paul,Rom. 10, 18 he made this answere; Haue theie not heard? No doubt their sound went-out through al the earth, and their words into the ends of the world. 1. Tim. 2, 4. So that the Gospel hath soun­ded ouer the whole earth; wherebie God do­eth testifie, that he would haue all men to be saued.

[Page 371] But manie at this daie neither haue, neither doe theie heare the Gospel? That is verie true. But the reason our Lord yeeldeth, where he saith,Mat. 21, 43 The kingdome of God shalbe taken from you, and shalbe giuen to à nation, which shal bring-forth the fruites thereof. The cause hereof in this place is expressed plainlie to be the extreme ingratitude of men toward God. For when he offereth them saluation, theie doe kil his mi­nisters, and abuse Christe with contumelious speeches. And therefore iustlie he doth pu­nishe them in taking the meane of saluation from the vngrateful. So that the nations of men, which haue not the worde of God, shold not bring destinies into our mindes, but these two thinges rather.What is to be learned by seeing manie nati­ons at this daie with­out the Gos­pel of Christe. First that the displeasure of God against the contemners of the Gos­pel, is verie greeuous, whereof it is that often­times he suffereth his worde vtterlie to be ta­ken from the vngrateful, and their seede after them, who together with their parentes, doe foster vngodlinesse in their heartes: Second­lie, that, being made more warie by the exam­ple of others, we shewe our selues thankefull to God for his Gospel, bringing forth fruites worthie the Gospel, which vnlesse we doe, we shal, as theie are and perchance more gree­uouslie, be punished; which thing we maie learne by the parable of the vine.Mat. 21, 33

Nowe in what sorte we are to strengthen [Page 372] our mindes against Stoical imaginations tou­ching particulars, we haue else-where decla­red, especialie vpon the 9. Chapter vnto the Romans, and vpon the first vnto the Ephes.

Neither do I meane,Howe the word brin­geth salua­tion. that the Word simplie is à step vnto blessednes, but with an adiunct, namelie when it is beleeued. For vnlesse we giue credite vnto the worde when we heare in the same,2. Cor. 2, 16. the sound of the Gospel is to vs euen the sauour of death, that is, the verie waie vn­to euerlasting miserie, not of it owne nature, but through our default, and cursed ingrati­tude. And that the knowledge of the word, & faith, are to be ioined-together in the first step, our Lord sheweth, when he saith, This is life e­ternal, Iohn 17, 3. that theie knowe thee to be the onelie verie God, and Iesus to be Christ, whom thou hast sent. For knowledge comprehendeth both an vn­derstanding out of the worde, and faith also proceeding from knowledg. Therefore when it is saide,Luk. 11, 28. Blessed are theie which heare the word, must be vnderstood with a condition of faith. Nowe whie the hearers of the worde, and be­leeuers are blessed, Paul teacheth, when out of the 32. Psalme he saith, Blessed are theie whose iniquities are forgiuen. Rom. 4, 7. Howe so? Because theie which beleeue the word of God offe­ring free reconciliation, haue remission of sinnes, theie which haue remission of sins, be righteous; but the righteous shal liue, euen by [Page 373] the sentence of the Lawe, an euerlasting life, which theie begin in this world; theie which liue an euerlasting life, are blessed; therefore such as beleeue the Gospel, are blessed, as theie which are now in the right waie, and goe on toward happinesse.

The second step,The 2. step vnto heauē. is through obedience to­ward God to proceede in the waie, according to the rule of the worde, and spirite of faith. This doth Dauid meane,Psal. 112, 1. when he saith, Blessed is the man that feareth the Lorde, and delighteth greatlie in his commandementes; Psa. 119, 1. Againe, Blessed are those that are vpright in their waie; and our Lord when he said,Matth. 5, 5. Blessed are the meeke, blessed are the peacemakers, blessed are the pure in heart, blessed are the merciful. Which formes of speech containe not, as the Papistes do gesse, the causes of blessednes; but theie describe the qualities and studies of such men as are alrea­die become the heires of the kingdome of God. For the nature of faith is such, that it stir­reth vs, in whome it dwelleth, to shewe obe­dience vnto the Lord; or, as Paule saith, to serue God through righteousnesse, after such time as the burden of sinne is remoued-awaie from vs, and we are made righteous through the righteousnesse of Christ,Rom. 10, 4. Who is the end of the lawe for righteousnesse vnto euerie one that be­leeueth. So that the Papistes doe verie il, when theie doe not rightlie with Paule distinguish [Page 374] betweene the proper benefite of Christe, and our due obedience. For so Paule vnto the E­phesians doth write:Ephes. 2, 8 By grace are ye saued tho­rough faith, and that not of your selues, it is the gift of God, 9. not of workes, least anie man should boast himselfe. This doth Paule speake of the proper benefite of Christe, afterward that followeth which doth concerne our due obedience, and the cause thereof:10. For we are his workemanship created in Christ Iesus vnto good workes, which God hath ordained, that we should walke in them. What thing I praie you could be spoken more plainlie?

The third step,The 3. step vnto heauē. is, when necessitie requireth, to keepe on the right waie through the valeie of teares. For as in the Actes of the Apostles it is saide,Act. 14, 22. We must through manie afflictions en­ter into the kingdome of God; 2. Tim. 3, 12 And Paul, Al that wil liue godlie in Christ Iesus, shal suffer persecu­tion. It can not therefore be otherwise, but that the godlie going on to heauen ward, must be enforced to suffer sundrie and diuers trou­bles.Iob 5, 17. This Iob doth meane, when he saith: Bles­sed is the man whome the Lorde correcteth: there­fore refuse not thou the chastising of the Almigh­tie. 18. For he maketh the wound, and bindeth it vp, he smiteth, and his handes make whole. For, as Paul saith,1. Cor. 11, 32 When we are iudged, we are chastened of the Lord, because we should not be condemned with the world. And Christ, Blessed are then [Page 375] which suffer persecution for righteousnesse sake. Matt. 5, 10. Blessed are yee when men reuile you; 11. He addeth the reason: for theirs is the kingdome of heauen, toward which theie goe, while patientlie bea­ring the crosse theie folowe Christ: which crosse is not the cause of raigning, but onelie the waie vnto the kingdome through Christ.

The fourth step,The 4. step vnto heauē. is, to runne the course of this life, in the feare of God euen vnto the last gaspe of life. Hereof spake the Lorde, when he saide:Mat. 10, 22. He that endureth to the ende, he shalbe saued. Reue. 14, 13 And in the Reuelation; Blessed are the dead, which die in the Lord: and theie die in the Lord, that departe out of this world in faith, and calling-vpon God. The ende of which faith,1. Pet. 1, 9. as Peter saith, is the saluation of soules. Wherebie it is apparent, that blessed­nes is ascribed to the aboue mentioned degrees with á condition of perseuerance euen to the ende.Coloss. 1, 23. Therefore saith Paule, If you be not mo­ued awaie from the hope of the Gospel; And Christ, If you abide in me, Iohn. 15, 7. and my wordes abide in you; And vnto the Hebrues,Heb. 3, 14. We are made partakers of Christ, if we keepe sure vnto the end the begin­ning, wherewith we are vpholden. These are the steppes vnto life, and euerlasting blessed­nesse, because theie keepe vs in the waie vnto Christe, who is the onelie waie vnto happi­nesse.

Wherfore he yt entereth into the right waie, [Page 376] proceedeth in the right waie, and keepeth à right course by night, and by daie, in aduersi­tie, and prosperitie toward the happinesse be­fore his eies, is called happie, because of the e­uent, for that he goeth the right waie vnto fe­licitie.

Moreouer,Where the soules of the righteous are vntil the daie of iudgement. the bodies being dead, the soules of the righteous vntill the last iudgement by the ministerie of Angels be receaued into Pa­radise, there to enioie blessednesse with Christ, according to the promise: To daie shalt thou be with me in Paradise. Luk. 23, 43. Hereof sprang that wish of Paul,Phil. 1, 23. I desire to be loosed, and to be with Christ; and that voice in the Reuelation,Reue. 14, 13. Blessed are the dead which die in the Lorde. Euen so saith the spi­rite; for theie rest from their labors, & their workes followe them. And although this blessednesse of the soules be vnspeakeable: yet it is not abso­lute. Because perfect blessednesse is of the whole natures not of à part of man, as alreadie we haue shewed, as at the last daie shal come to passe, the bodies being raised. For which purpose there is à certaine last iudgement ap­pointed of God, in which this ful and absolute felicitie shal be conferred vpon the Saintes. So that the Saintes, whose bodies doe sleepe in the duste, haue receaued alreadie single robes, but shal not be endued with double, vntil we al meete together.

The first robe is the verie felicitie it selfe, & [Page 377] the rest of soules in Christ. But the seconde shal be ye immortalitie and glorie of ye bodies, which shal be fashioned like vnto the glorious bodie of Christ for euer and euer.Phil. 3, 21. And so at ye length we shal perfectlie be blessed, ioined to God the soueraigne blisse with perfect loue; the i­mage of God, after which we at the first were made, and afterwarde redeemed, being refor­med in vs. In this image perfecte righteous­nes, perfect holinesse, perfect libertie, perfect wisedome, perfect cleerenes and glorie shall shine. Dauid had respect herevnto when he saide:Psal. 17, 15. When I awak, I shal be satisfied with thine image. For in this world there shal be no satie­tie. Which thing Salomon also doeth wit­nesse,Ecclesi. 1, 8. when he saide, The eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the eare with hearing. By which saying, Salomon doth signifie, that nothing sufficeth man before he come vnto God, en­ioie God, and blessedlie to rest in him. For God hath ingraffed such à desire in the heart of man, that no good thing can suffice him, besides the soueraigne happinesse: which hauing once attained, hee resteth therein all blessed. So that the most perfect state of man shal be eternal felicitie, the which we begin here in this life, and in the life to come shall perfectlie enioie the same. Hitherto belon­geth that saying of Prosper, The life to come is thought to be blessedlie euerlasting, and euer­lastinglie [Page 378] blessed, where certaine securitie is, & se­cure quietnes, and quiet ioifulnes, happie eterni­tie, eternal happines, where perfest loue is, no feare at all. This happie state was offered in à vision to Iohn in the Reuelation.Reuel. 21. 2. For he sawe the ho­lie citie newe Ierusalem come downe from heauen, prepared as à bride trimmed for her husbande. Wherein neither sorowe, 4. neither crying, neither death shal bee, but ioie, peace, quietnes, and e­uerlasting life,18. the walles whereof are of Iasper, and the citie it selfe pure golde. 22. The tem­ple whereof was God almightie and the Lambe; the glorie of God did lighten it, 23. and the lambe is the light of it. Reuel. 22, 5. 4. They shal neede no candle, neither light of the sunne: For the Lord God giueth them light. And they shal see his face, and his name shal bee in their fore-heades. This description of true happines, which wee looke for, is set downe not so liuelie as the felicitie it selfe, but onelie to stir vs to desire the same, and to make vs to proceed in the race of godlines, vntil wee at­taine vnto the marke of blessednes promised. For truelie it is saide of Paule after Isaiah:1. Cor. 2, 9.

The thinges which eie hath not seene, neither eare hath heard, neither came into mans hearte, hath God prepared for them which loue him. A­gaine, 1. Cor. 13, 12 Nowe we see through à glasse darkelie, but then we shal see face to face.

Wherefore, liue wee through faith; walke we in the spirite;Rom. 1, 17. seeke wee those thinges which are a­boue [Page 379] knowing that in this worlde we are pilgrims,Gal. 5, 16. let vs go-on towarde euerlasting life;Coloss. 3, 1. let vs for­get that which is behinde,Heb. 11, 13. and endeauour our sel­ues to that which is before,Heb. 13, 14. and followe harde to­wardes the marke, for the price of the hie calling of God in Christ Iesus.Phil 3. 13. 14. Let vs consider that no euil can be imagined either more pestilent, or more damnable, than through sinne to bee se­parated from God, from the euerlasting foun­tane of blessednes to bee turned vnto moste lothsome miserie, and from the most pleasant life vnto the most bitter death.

By this which hath beene saide,Against the vaine opini­ons of the Philoso­phers con­cerning true happines. it is to confute the vanitie of the Philosophers, who define mans felicitie otherwise than wee doe. For if the true happines of man, be such à per­fect state, wherein neither anie miserie maie be feared, nor anie good thing desired, or bee wanting, as shal be in ye euerlasting life, where­into in this world through godlines we hastē; doubtles they al are much out of the waie, which doe measure happines, and last & pro­per ende of man by anie thing in this world, of what auctoritie soeuer they bee which teach the same. For they are but dust and ashes, yea nothing, being compared vnto that master euen our God, vnto whose wordes wee are sworne.

Epicurus the ringe-leader of Epicures,Against the Epicures. [Page 380] doeth measure the ende of man, by à pleasant life. For hee taught that the chiefest happines of man was onelie the pleasure of the bodie, which consisteth in daintie meats, and drinks, and deligh [...]s of the flesh. But who were his maisters? Euen verie beastes. For he therefore iudged pleasure to be the cheefest happinesse, because beastes also for companie desired, and followed the same. But Epicurus did nei­ther wiselie, neither wel in following the les­sons of beastes, as the Stoikes reprehended him. For the beastes neither desire pleasure afore all thinges, but their owne conseruation: then pleasure as aggreeing to reason. Nowe howe il this impure opinion of Epicurus be­seemeth man, euerie man, haue he but à meane capacitie, maie perceaue. For what, I beseech you, doeth so either weaken the vnderstan­ding, or breake the strength of the bodie, as bodilie pleasure, if it exceede the lawes of na­ture? For al the powers of the bodie are quic­kened by the work & labor of the mind: but through idlenesse and voluptuous delightes, they languish. As it is verie-wel saide of one: After the delectation of the bodie, followeth the destruction of the flesh. Because naturalie the companiō of pleasure, is paine. For the cause of corruption, which is à verie paine, are sen­sual delightes. And therefore both Cicero & Salomon compareth pleasure to an harlot, and [Page 381] that fitlie. For Cicero saith, that pleasure a­mong vertues, is like an harlot amongest honest matrons; for by her flatterie shee destroieth man. And Salomon,Prou. 5, 3. 4. The lipps of à strange woman drop as an honie combe, and her mouth is more softe than oile: but the end of her is bitter as worme-worde. For as Bees doe firste giue honie, and foorthwith pricke with their sting: so bodi­lie pleasure (of which the Epicurs make three sortes, namelie to feede delicatelie, to drinke pleasantlie, and to liue lecherouslie, the rest seruing herevnto, whether they delight the eies, or please the eares, or prouoke the bodie by what meanes soeuer vnto pleasure they cal appurtenaunces) beareth à show of good­nesse, while it ticleth the mind by her entice­mentes, but in the ende it bringeth moste bitter sorrowe. Because not onelie the worde of God condemneth the pleasure of the bo­die as hurtful to the soule; but also the verie Philosophers too of the wiser kinde.Antisthenes Critolaus. For An­tisthenes called bodilie pleasure, extreme mi­serie. Critolaus the Peripatetion did not one­lie cal it extreeme miserie, but saide moreouer that it was the cause and spring of al euils. Ar­chitas the Tarentine,Architas Tarētinus. as Cicero doth report, saith there is none more deadlie à pestilence giuen of nature to man, than is the pleasure of the bodie. For pleasure flaieth counsel, is an enimie to reason, dazeleth the sight of [Page 382] the minde;Aristotle. and hath no dealing at al with vir­tue. And Aristotle, did saie, that bodilie pleasure agreeth to beastes rather then to men.

The reasons which the familie of Epicures hath to confirme the blessednes of man to be pleasure, are foolish and ridiculous to those, who know that the end & perfect state of na­ture is to be considered in those things which make nature perfect, not in those things which destroie nature. Let vs therefore sende-back the Epicure to the hogs his masters, or vnto Penelopes her woers, of whom it seemeth he learned his philosophie; and let vs beare in minde the saieng of Iesus the sonne of Sirach; He that resisteth pleasure, prolongeth his life.

Pindarus capitane of the Lyrikes,2. Against the opinion of Pinda­rus. to currie fauour with his princes, did thus define the felicitie of man: Let him knowe that he is hap­pie in the sight of God, who hath glorie with goods. For that is the onelie happines of man. But for­somuch as riches are outwarde thinges and glorie is vane, and subiect, oftentimes to al­teration, who, I praie you, can bee blessed thereby: especialie seeing hee is not hap­pie, but miserable, whiche feareth anie e­uill?

The Poēt Simonides saith,3. Against the opinion of Simoni­des. the best thing that man can haue, is he health; the next to that, [Page 381] is to bee well fauoured; and the nexte to that, to gette riches by good meanes with­out fraude. This fellowe also followeth the counsell of his senses, not of reason. Nowe that such à man is not blessed, it is manifest by this, that hee is subiecte to the mutabilitie of fortune, of whome also he stan­deth in feare.

Aristotle the chiefe among the Peripa­tetikes,4. Against the opinion of Aristotle. had the people, euen the greate Pa­tron of error, and the peruerse interpreter of the trueth, for his master. Hee with the Stoikes doeth well condemne the filthie plea­sure of Epicurus, as more meete for à beast than for anie man: but hee seeketh with the wiser men of the multitude, two other kindes of good thinges; wherein erroneous­lie hee doeth place the blessednesse of man. The one hee calleth ciuil, the other con­templatiue. To these hee annexeth the three sortes of good thinges, to witte, of the minde, of the bodie, and externall. Both his Ciuilian and Contemplator, hee saith, stande in neede of these thinges, but the Ci­uilian more, and the other lesse. Secondlie hee placeth the blessednesse of the ciuile man in vertue; & of the contemplator in con­templation, that is in the deepe action of the minde.

[Page 384] But each felicitie, as he saith, is by prospe­ritie bewtified & encreased; & by aduersitie obscured, & diminished, and oftentimes defa­ced vtterlie.

The Stoikes with weightie arguments did shake this opinion of Aristotle, both for cal­ling them good thinges, which were not, and for saying yt outward thinges did auaile much vnto blessednes, especialie seeing hee him­selfe had placed the perfection of the same in the minde. Nowe, if there it be perfect, dout­lesse outwarde thinges, which come not nigh the mind, cannot alter the minde: but the ve­rie minde as of externall thinges he hath set-downe. But to bee briefe; seeing Aristotles felicitie is contrarie to our religion, yea and to reason also, who maie embrace the same as true? What vertue, I pray you, is perfect with­out godlinesse? What contemplation but is erroneous, if it haue not the light of Gods hea­uenlie worde? What goodes of fortune are not transitorie, & vncertaine? Vndoubtedlie, as Cicero doth saie, If à blessed life maie bee lost, it cannot bee blessed. Whoso feareth alterati­on, is not with out griefe. Let Aristotle there­fore consider more aduisedlie what kinde of happinesse it is which hee promiseth to his Ciuilian and Contemplator. I ouerpasse in silence that the ende of mans nature is à far other thing, than à tēporal function, or office.

[Page 385] In the booke of Iob,5. Ag [...]ust the [...] wise m [...]. there bee fiue thinges numbred, wherein the wise men of this world doe place their chiefest happines, to wit, in the multitude of children, in aboundance of riches, in the health of the bodie, in sumptu­ous buildinges, and to bee famous in the worlde. These together are thought to make à mā happie. But because such as abound with these thinges, doe hange betweene hope and feare, they are in verie deed moste miserable. For they doe alwaies feare least some euil doe happen, and fortune change her face. And therefore miserable, as I maie saie, is their blessednesse, which is subiecte to so manie chances, and whose ende is endles miserie; as the Psalmes 37. and 73. doe teach. The vanitie of all these, wee maie ouerthrowe euē by this onelie argument. Nothing is so great, or so heaped-together in this life, that it can suffice him, which desireth more, according to that of Seneca: Fortune hath giuen much to manie men, but enough to none. Wallowe thou in pleasures, exceede in banquetting excell thou Sardanapalus, passe Epicurus, yet thine vncleane mind wil continualie wish-for som­what else. Gather thou so muchwealth as thou wilt; excel Craesus, passe thou Crassus, yet thy minde wil continualie desire more. En­large the boundes of thie dominions as much [Page 386] as thou wilt, yea though thou ouercome the whole worlde, yet another worlde will bee sought, which thou must ouercome. In all o­ther thinges either wee attaine not so much as wee woulde, because our desire is vnsatiable; or wee repent that wee haue our wishe; and when man hath best fortune, then common­lie either some woefull chaunce, or à gnaw­ing conscience doeth trouble him. And no­thing is so fortunate in this life, but it hath much miserie and bitternes admixed there­withall, as Pindarus saide right wel, One good thing present, hath two discommodities therewith­all.

Socrates,The opinion of Socrates nearest vnto the truth. who in my iudgement is more to be commended than al the aboue named Phi­losophers, placed the felicitie of man, not in this life, but in another life, following there­in, not the brutish beastes, nor the folish mul­titude, nor Craesus, nor anie of them, who in this world seeme fortunate, but nature for his capitan [...] his argument which he vsed was this: The natural desire of man, is not vane. But all men naturalie desire to be happie. Therefore this desire is not vane. But none come vnto this hap­pines in this life. For in this life nothing maketh à man perfecte. Therefore it is to bee sought for in an other life.

Hitherto Socrates was in the right waie. Ac­cording [Page 387] to whose mind, Plato his scholer, doth call the true happines sometime the contem­plation of the beste, as the waie vnto blisse; sometime he maketh the loue and imitation of God the ende of man, or chiefe selicitie, as that wherein the soueraigne blisse of man doeth consist. And although Socrates & Pla­to approach nighest vnto the trueth: yet be­cause that smal sparcle of the trueth is often ouerwhelmed with varietie of opinions, and disputations, & as it were with dirt and dregs bestained, let vs acknowledge the great be­nefite of God, who by his worde sheweth vs the readie waie, both vnto the knowledge of true happines, and also vnto the endles en­ioieng and possession of the same. For the word of God sheweth that onelie pearle, that soueraigne blisse wherein the minde of man doth rest: the sweetnes whereof whoso once hath tasted (for euen in this life also it is also tasted, though not vnto satietie) he forthwith begins to abhor al those things, which the mi­serable multitude, and men of power in this worlde haue in admiration. But that we maie attain vnto the quiet possession of this happi­nes; godlines, the steps whereof we haue afore in this chapter set downe, bringeth to passe. Which godlines doth maruelouslie couple vs to God,Fruite of godlines. yea in such wise, that we become one with him, being conformed to him shall so [Page 388] liue for euer & euer in the life to come: where the chiefe happines of man, as aboue we haue declared, doeth abide.

On the otherside vngodlines seuereth the wicked and the vnbeleuers from God,Fruite of vngodlines. so that being driuen from the soueraigne happines, they become one with the diuel and his mē ­bers.Psal. 33, 12. To conclude, as Blessed is that nation, whose God is the Lorde: So miserable are they, who are without God, be they neuer so high­lie in fortunes booke. For the more fortune doeth fanne, the more shee deceaueth; and him she maketh à verie foole whom shee fauoreth ouer-wel.

This nowe being spoken concerning hap­pines, returne wee vnto the wordes of the Psalm, Blessed are they which dwel in thine house. But wherefore blessed? Because they haue begunne that euerlasting felicitie where-vnto they tende, and for which they were both at the first created, and afterwarde redeemed.

But who are they which dwel in the house of God?Who dwell in the house of God. Through sinne we are al the sorte of vs with our parentes Adam aud Euah, exclu­ded out of the house of God: through faith of the promise we are brought in againe, being called through the sounde of the Gospel; the state whereof by the sacramentes, as by the seales of God, is assured vs, vntil we swarue [Page 389] from the couenant, that is from faith and obe­dience towarde God. And forsomuch as great is our weakenes,Difference betweene sinnes. whereof it is that euen à iust man falleth in à daie seuen times, we are to set à difference betweene those sinnes which ex­clude vs out of the house of God, & betwene those that expel, and vtterlie separate vs frō the familie of God, and bring vnder the do­minion of sathan. Manie are the infirmities in ye faithful; diuerse wicked affections spring­vp; and oftentimes they offend of ignorance; notwithstanding so long as they retaine faith and à good conscience, they doe abide in the house of God, not as of his household onlie, but as liuelie stones also of which the house is builded. But when wittinglie and of purpose theie sinne, theie ouerthrow their conscience, and make shipwrack of faith, and so are cast out from the spiritual familie of God, vntill through repentance theie come home againe. For such is the goodnes and mercie of God, that this house is alwaies set-open to such as vnfainedlie repent.

And forsomuch as this house of God,How God is serued in his Church. is the Temple wherin God wil be worshipped, therefore God maketh mention of the chiefe seruice in the same, when he saith, for euer and euer theie wil praise thee. And as the grounde of this praising of God is the goodnes and mer­cie of God, according to the saieng of the [Page 390] Psalme,Whie God is to be prai­sed. Praise ye the Lord, because he is good, for his mercie endureth for euer. (Vnder which his goodnes and mercie are comprehended al his works,Psal, 116, 1. al his benefits, & al ye promises of God, as maie be gathered out of the 136. Psal:Mercie of God what it comprehen­deth.) So ye praise of God consisteth in ye true knowledge of God; in the meditation of the wonderfull workes of Grd;Wherein the true praise of God doeth consist. in an assured trust of his pro­mises; in true obedience; in praier; in lauding his goodnes and mercie; in confession &c. Wherefore none can duelie praise God, but such as dwel in his house,Who doe praise God. namelie such as are trulie religious, whose praises God liketh-of, and alloweth: whose eares are open, not vnto the mouth, but vnto the hart; not vnto the tongue, but vnto the life of the cōmender, as Augustine saith; So that neither of the wicked, who sound one thing with their lips, and shew an other thing in their life; nor of hypocrites, because ye face of their soule, if so I maie speak, is filthilie de­faced with the mire of vane glorie, and vnder the pretence of lauding God doe seeke their own praise; nor yet of hirelings is god praised, for theie praise their bellie, not God: but the godlie which liue through faith, whose whole cogitations, and good workes, are commenda­tions of God, they onelie praise God. There­fore saith Augustine: Whatsoeuer thou doest, do it well, and thou hast praised God.

And whereas the workes of God, as the [Page 391] Sunne,How the creatures praise God. the Moone, ye starres, the fishes of the sea, lightening, and thunder be saide to praise God, it is by à figure called Metonymia, be­cause through their bewtie, & great commo­dities which they bring to mankinde, they prouoke men to praise God.Musical in­sthruments in the old Law what theie fignified.

Againe, whereas God is saide, as maie ap­peare in the Psalmes, to be praised with Cym­bals, Tympanies, and sundrie instrumentes of musicke, that was but figuratiuelie done. For they signified howe God in the newe Testa­ment, was to be praised with ye sweet musike and harmonie of sounde doctrine,Organs & Musike whē to be retai­ned in the Church. and of god­lie behauiour. Organs and Musike maie bee reteined in the Temples of Christians, so long as they bewtifie & further the ministerie, and do not hinder the same: but from these things, let that Iewish persuasion, touching the opi­nion of worshippe, be farre abandoned. The like iudgement maie bee giuen of singing of Psalmes,The perpe­tuitie of the Church. and other lessons in the Church.

Moreouer when the Psalme saith, For euer and euer: it signifieth howe the Church shall abide for euer: yet that out of this life it shal be translated vnto immortall glorie, and ioi­ned to the souerainge happines, in which it shall bee blessed for euermore. And this is the ende of our religion, which alone re­duceth vs vnto the originall from whiche [Page 392] we haue estraied; and alone restoreth vs to perfection and blessednesse, than which no­thing is to be desired more.Perfection [...] For in verie deede this is perfection and happines, euen for eue­rie thing to attaine the ende for which it was created, and therein to rest, and be blessed. Wherefore the vse of this verse is three-folde.The vse of [...] [...]. vers. The first is, that we studie out of Gods word to knowe God the father in Iesus Christ tho­rough the holy spirit; yt we shut our selues tho­rough faith into his house, and therein conti­nue; that we both in heart, and in conuersati­on doe praise God whom we knowe, and be­ing praised, do loue, being loued doe expresse and imitate, and by immitating enioie him, and by enioieng be made immortal and bles­sed; and finalie, that being made immortal & blessed we maie abide euerlastinglie in the so­ueraigne happines, singing Psalmes & hymn [...] continualie to God with all his elect. This continual praising of the euerlasting God hath annexed there-vnto most pure, holie, and comfortable pleasure:Ps [...]t 14, 7. According to the Psalme:Psal. 16, 11. Iacob shal reioyce, and Israel shalbe glad; and in an other Psalme, At thie right hande there are pleasures for euermore.

Another vse is, that in al afflictions & trou­bles we fetch cōfort, cōsidering yt both we are in the house of God, and also that by the testi­monie [Page 393] of the holie spirite, we are pronounced blessed, notwithstanding that in the sight of the world, we seeme miserable. For after night the cleare daie wil appeare. So that the pro­mise of blessednesse ought to be in steede of à remedie vnto vs against the bitternesse of the crosse.

The thirde vse is, that so manie as are out of this house of God, although theie haue ma­nie goodlie children, outward peace, good suc­cesse in their matters, yea and in the eies of men do seeme blessed: yet theie are extreme­lie miserable, as theie which hasten the readie waie vnto endlesse perdition. From which neither Epicurus, Zeno, nor Aristotle can fetch their families, whom misera­blie theie haue fedde with à vaine hope of bles­sednesse.

THE SECOND part of the Psalme.

CHAP. 1.
1. The summe of the second parte of this Psalme, generalie; 2. The inuincible courage of true Preachers; 3. Whether al the mi­nisters of the Gospel, haue the holie Ghost.

THe second parte of this Psalme, comprised in three verses, name lie in the 5. 6. and 7. describeth the state of the Doctors of the Church. The members of which description, are these. The first concerneth the courage, and weapons, where-with Doctors are to be fenced; The second with what mind and studie men are to enter-into the ministe­rie; The thirde, how theie are to passe through the vale of teares in setting-forth, and enlarge­ing the kingdome of God; The fourth, an al­legorical representation of the ministers of the worde; The fift, a promise of blessing, and of good successe in the ministerie; The sixte, [Page 395] a final cause of this successe. That it maie ap­peare howe the ministerie of the worde, is preserued by the presence, and power of God in the Church.

The fift verse.‘BLESSED IS THE MAN, WHOSE STRENGTH IS IN THEE.’

THis first part of the description doth mi­nister courage vnto the Doctors of the Church, for the withstanding of Satan, and the gates of hel. An euident example maie be seene in the Apostles, whome Christ did send into the world to preach the Gospel. For he sent euen rude men vnto the moste eloquent; plaine fellowes vnto the subtile; naked men vnto armed; weake vnto the strong; poore vn­to mightie princes of the Empire, and of other nations; quiet vnto cruel persons; yet theie o­uer-came, and spread-forth the kingdome of Christ, in so much that in à verie smal time their sound went ouer the whole worlde.

But how came theie by such a courage? E­uen God gaue it them, who alwaie worketh in the ministerie of the worde. For bee­ing armed with the power of GOD, theie entered battaile with the worlde. And [Page 396] therefore Paul saith:2. Cor. 10, 4. The weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mightie through God, to cast­downe holdes, casting downe the imaginations, and euerie high thing that is exalted against the knowledge of God, 5. and bringing into captiuitie e­uerie thought to the obedience of Christ. The mi­nisters of the Gospel armed with this courage, do preuaile against the gates of hel. For which cause theie are pronounced blessed, by reason of the infallible hope, which both theie haue themselues, and shewe to others. This cou­rage GOD in al ages endueth his ministers withal. This the Lord gaue vnto his disci­ples,Iohn. 20, 22. 23. when he saith: Receaue the holie Ghoste. Whosoeuers sinnes ye remit, theie are remitted; and whosoeuers sinnes yee retaine, theie be retained. Therefore the holie Ghost is that fortitude, wherebie the ministers of the worde, are em­boldened to oppose them-selues against the gates of hel. This strength of God his spirite, both maketh the mindes of teachers couragi­ous, and bringeth power to the worde, where­bie it taketh effect in the harts of such as heare the Gospel. Furthermore this fortitude of the spirite doth giue witnes that the doctrine of the Gospel is not forged, but from God himselfe. For it is à great miracle, that the whole world, and especialie, that so mightie an Empire as the Romane was, could not hin­der those fewe disciples of the Lord, but mau­gre [Page 397] their heads, theie scattered the seede of the Gospel ouer the whole worlde.Mart. Lu­ther. Martine Lu­ther, à man of holie remembrance, for the space of 45. yeares through this power of the spirite, opposed him selfe against the whole Romane Empire, and al the kingdome of An­tichrist. And although at the first Luther had no partakers against so mightie an aduersarie, the chiefe whereof was the Duke of darkenes, euen the diuel him-selfe: yet so he preuailed, that all the power of Satan, and rabblement of Antichrist, could not diminish so much as one haire of his head. Such is the valiantnes, wher­with the Lord armeth his ministers.

But what?Whether al the mini­sters of the worde haue the holie spirit, or no. haue al the ministers of the Go­spel the holie spirite? Are not manie giuen partlie to ambition, (ah greefe) & partlie vnto other sinnes? What hath the holie spirite to do with ambition, and wickednes? A difference must be set betweene the ministerie it selfe, & the ministers of the Gospel.An answere In the ministerie the holie Ghost is alwaie effectualie present. For what the force wherbie we are nourished, is in the bread: yt is the holie Ghost in ye word, wherby we ar moued to beleue, & born-anew. For the heauenly Father hath so decreed, yt the spirite of the Sonne shalbe present, and work, both with the word, & in the word. Hence it is ye ministers of the new Testament, are caled of the Apostle,2. Cor. 3. [...] ministers, not of the letter, but of the [Page 398] spirite. So manie therefore as resist the worde of the Gospel, whosoeuer, be he worthie, or vnworthie, preacheth the same, resisteth the holie spirite. For so great à matter dependeth not either vpon the worthines, or vnworthi­nesse of ministers.Iudas. Iudas preached, and Peter preached,Peter. and both of them baptized: but the word, and the baptisme was Christs, in which his spirite did worke.

Againe, the question maie be aunswered; that al preachers which teach the word right­lie, haue the holie Ghost, but not al alike. For theie whose life aunswereth to the doctrine, haue the spirite, as both à teacher, and à sancti­fier: But if the life agree not with the do­ctrine, theie haue the holie spirite, as à teacher, but not as á sanctifier: and that through their owne fault, because stubburnelie theie resist the holie spirite. That holie man of God Moses he had the holie spirite not onelie as à prophecier,Moses. but also as à sanctifier too. Be­cause as his prophecies were most true: so was his life most holie.Balaam. But Balaam had the spi­rite of prophecie and of teaching, which vn­doubtedlie was the holie Ghoste: but he had not the spirite of sanctification.Num. 22, 28 29. For he was ambitious, and couetous, for the which his owne asse vpon whome he sate, rebuked him. Peter had the holie spirite,Peter. both of teaching and of sanctification, because his conuersation [Page 399] agreed with the puritie of doctrine.Iud [...] But Iu­das, because he was not onelie couetous, but à theefe too, had the holie spirite as à teacher, but not as à sanctifier. Because he obeied the spirite of couetousnesse, that is of Sathan, ra­ther than the spirite of God.

Moreouer,Ministers how called. as touching the spirite of tea­ching, it is to be noted, that as there is à two­folde calling by meanes, and without meanes: So there is à twofolde probation of the spirite of instruction. For, if the calling be with-out meanes, yt is, by God himselfe, & Iesus Christ, and not by men after the ordinarie manner, as was the calling of the Prophets, and Apostles, the spirite of instruction, without al doubt is ye holie Ghost himselfe, whose doctrine, for yt he is true, is also true, firme, and heauenlie, with­out al mixture of errors: it hath also heauenlie miracles, wherebie the trueth of the doctrine is confirmed. But if the calling be by meanes, then are the spirites to be tried, whether theie are of God, and so farre-forth the holie spirite is to be acknowledged for the teacher, as what is taught is agreeable to the worde receaued from the Prophetes, from Christ, and his A­postles. Wherefore let him be accursed of vs, yt preacheth another Gospel, than yt which the Apostles through the cōmandement of Christ haue preached, & hath ye testimonie of ye Pro­phets. [Page 400] So that in vaine is the holie spirite pre­tended, when à defection is made from the voice of the Gospel.

CHAP. 2.
1. The special thinges required in à minister of the Gospel; 2. Howe the knowledge of Gods word is attained; 3. State of wicked ministers.

AND IN WHOSE HEART ARE THI [...] WAIES.

THis second mēber of the description, con­cerning the minde and studie of the mini­sters of the Gospel, is referred vnto their knowledge of Gods worde, vnto their feeling of the same in their heartes; and vnto the di­rection, or rule, wherebie the preachers of the worde should gouerne the people committed to their charge.

Then first of al it is required of teachers in the Church,1. The knowledge of God his word re­quired in ministers. that theie knowe the celestial do­ctrine. Which doctrine is for that cause tear­med the waie of the Lord; because it is to man as à waie prepared of God, to goe therebie from death vnto life, and from the troubles of this world, vnto blessed immortalitie. Walke in my commandementes, saith the Lorde by the [Page 401] Prophet.Psal. 119. 1. Againe, Blessed are theie which walke in the Lawe of the Lorde.

Moreouer,Knowledg of Gods heauenlie mysterie howe attai­ned. the knowledge of this waie, that is of heauenlie doctrine, somtime is pow­red in by à secrete blast, and inspiration from God without the labor and care of man: as maie appeare in the Prophetes and Apostles. Sometime it is gotten by the labor and paines of man.Praier. Which labour hath two partes. The first and principal whereof, is, burning and continual praier vnto God, that he would di­rect vs in his trueth, teach vs, and lighten the eies of our minde.Psa. 127, 1. For, except the Lord build the house, theie labour in vaine that builde it. The other part is an earnest studie of God his worde and wil.Studie of the Scrip­tures. Nowe that men be rightlie framed vnto that studie, sixe thinges be neces­sarilie required, of which breefelie we will speake.

The first is dailie reading of the scripture.Sixe thing [...] necessarilie required in à student of the Scrip­tures. Which who so wil reade with profite, must haue the knowledge both of those tongues, wherin the scripture was at the first written, without which. neither the kinde of speech, nor the phrazes can be vnderstoode;Knowledg of the tongues. and be­side not onelie Logique, to espie the order & methode of the matter,Logique. but the knowledge be­side of other artes,Natural Philosophie. and especialie of that part of philosophie caled natural philosophie. Paul commendeth this studie of continual reading [Page 402] vnto Timothie, [...]. 4, 1 [...] when he saith: Giue attendance vnto re [...]ding.

The second is an obseruation,Obseruation and collecti­on of the principal pointes of heauenlie do­ctrine, without which the paines in reading is to smal purpose. For, as in al artes this care is necessarie to him that would be substantialie learned: so litle shal he profite in the sacred Scripture, which obserueth not the chiefe heads of religion; neither bringeth al that he readeth vnto some special common place.

The thirde is à diligent regard vnto com­mon axioms, & sentences, which are as gene­ral rules, ministring iudgement in doubtful causes; as Rhetoriciās of general thesees, which therefore theie call consultations, do iudge of particulars, and causes in controuersie. Hi­therto maketh obseruation of examples, from which the determinations of matters in doubt are fetched oftentimes.

The fourth is à sure reteining of the pre­mises in minde, that when occasion serueth, theie maie be drawen out of the treasurehouse of memorie.

The fift is contemplation, wherebie as it were at the first sight of the minde, we behold the whole course of the Scripture. By this we compare thinges like, and vnlike together; by this we reconcile contrarie places; and by this [Page 403] we seeke definitions, diuisions, distinctions, in­terpretations of obscure places, yea and make à constitution of the bodie of doctrine.

The sixt is tradition of elders.Tradition. This decla­reth what the holie fathers haue thought of e­uerie thing. This tradition, if it be confirmed by the worde of GOD, is of authoritie and weight. In which respecte wee faithfullie im­brace at this daie the Creede, both of the Ni­cene councel, of Athanasius, of Ambrose, and that which is caled the Apostles Creede, be­cause theie are euident groundes gathered out of God his worde. But if the tradition be not proued out of the word of God, then is it, ei­ther contrarie to the worde, and therefore we abhorre the same, as the voice of the serpent that seduced Euah; or it is beside the worde, and we receaue it, in respect of such as deliue­red the same out, vntil it be drawen into an euil conclusion by the enimies of true do­ctrine.

With this knowledge of the heauenlie do­ctrine there should be ioyned,2. The se­cond thing required in ministers, & preachers of the Gospel. as in al men, so especialie in the ministers of the Gospel, á liuelie feeling in the heart; without which, knowledge doth not profite, but hurt rather, through the fault of man.Feeling of the heart. This liuelie sense proceedeth from faith, and other motions a­greeing to the Lawe of God, which the holie spirite stirreth-vp in the heartes of beleeuers.

[Page 404] And this sense is called the path-waie of God, because as God requireth the same: so through it we approch, and are ioined vnto God. And therefore Paule requireth these two thinges, namelie knowledge, and feeling together,Phil. 1, 9. whē he thus writeth: This I praie you, that your loue maie abound yet more and more in knowledge, 10. and in al iudgement, that ye maie dis­cerne thinges that differ, 11. that ye maie be pure, and without offence, vntil the daie of Christ, filled with the fruites of righteousnesse, which are by Iesus Christ vnto the glorie, Ende of knowledge. and praise of God. So that the end of knowledge is, that we should iudge proue, and approue those thinges, which are the better, and most profitable. To feeling is subiect synceritie, which is à good cōscience before God, innocencie of life, that we offend no man, and plentie of fruits of the righteous­nes of faith, which proceede from the grace of Iesus Christ, and tend vnto the laude & praise of God.

If this liuelie sense with the knowledge of heauenlie doctrine be not in the teachers of the Churche,State of wicked mi­nisteri. nothing is more cursed in the whole worlde than theie are. For when they reproue other mē for sinning, theie con­demne themselues; when theie lift vp others with comfort, theie ouer-throwe themselues; when theie teach others, themselues are con­founded; [Page 405] to be short, whatsoeuer theie doe in the ministerie, committed to their charge, it is à testimonie to their owne damnation. For theie are verie-like the makers of Noahs arke. For as theie, when the arke was builded, wher­in Noah, and his familie was saued, perished in the floud: so these men, shal perish in the floud of hel fire, when such as gaue credite vn­to the worde theie preached, shal be saued. Wherefore let both them, which are in the ministerie, and them also which purpose to enter into the same, consider, howe grieuous, the punishment is, that hangeth-ouer their heades, if the feeling in the heart, and their life answere not to their doctrine: againe, what great glorie is laide-vp for them, if theie doe builde the Church of Christ with both hands, namelie with doctrine, and with example. Of whiche glorie afterwarde we wil entreate.

Moreouer the teachers of the Churche ought to shewe the waie of the Lord to men that goe astraie.3. The third thing requi­red in the ministers of the Gospel. For which cause theie are called the guides of the flocke in the Scrip­tures, that going-before them both in lear­ning and life, theie maie both prepare the waie, and animate others to followe them. And therefore in the prophesie of Isaiah, it is written:Isai. 62, 10. Go-through, goe-through the gates, pre­pare you the waie for the people, caste-vp, caste-vp [Page 406] the waie, and gather out the stones, and set-vp à standerd for the people. Let preachers therefore of the worde vnderstand, that as theie ought to goe before other men, both by example of good life, and sound preaching: so theie must first before others come into peril. For which cause it foloweth in the Psalme: Who goeth tho­rough the valleie of teares.

CHAP. 3.
1. That the Church of God, especiallie the mini­sters thereof are to endure persecution; 2. Of the crosse, the kindes thereof; 3. Speciall thinges to be remembred of such as are punished deseruedlie; 4. The faithful how tried; 5. Of martyrdome, who are martyrs, and howe theie are to be thought-vpon; 6. Whether idola­trous Princes are to be obeied▪

The sixte verse.‘WHO GOETH THROVGH THE VAI­LEIE OF TEARES.’

THis thirde member of the description pur­teth the preachers of the worde in minde of the peril, and daunger which accompa­nieth the ministerie. For it affirmeth howe [Page 407] theie are to passe through the vale of teares, that is, theie must aduance the kingdome of God with much trouble, and persecution. For such is the rage of Sathan, and his members, that withall their force theie flie vppon the godlie ministers of the worde, that with the streame of their blood, theie maie stoppe the course of the Gospel, yea and abolishe the Church: but vaine is their hope. For stronger is he which taketh the preachers parte, than al the gates of Hel. If God saieth the Apostle,Rom. 8, 31. bee on our side, who can bee a­gainst vs?

Furthermore, Dauid tooke this allegori­cal speach from [...] present occasion. For being in exile, and seeing with what daunger al the feastes which God had ordained, the people went vp to Hierusalem for to sacrifice, with spiritual eies he beheld the great perils and persecutions which theie shoulde endure, that in time to come, were to set-foorth the kingdome of Christ. So that the sense is this. As ye people of God through the drie valleis, & for that cause prouoking vnto weeping & teares rather than vnto ioie, went▪ vp to Hieru­salem at the hie feastes to sacrifice: So the tea­chers of the Churche, the Apostles and others, through manie afflictiōs, tentatiōs, & persecu­tions, as it were through drie valleis do spread the Gospel, being readie to offer vnto God [Page 480] the people which obeie the Gospel. Howe greatlie Paule was persecuted, that he maie be an example for al, appeareth in the 11. Chap­ter of the seconde Epistle vnto the Corinthi­ans. Wherefore let the ministers of the gospel vnderstand, howe theie are called not vnto pleasures and banqueting, but to suffer great conflictes, and moste certaine perils; and the more secure that theie seeme, the nigher theie are to the snares. For the diuel is an enimie to the Church. And therefore afore al others he setteth vpon the builders of the same, that theie beeing oppressed, he maie the more ea­silie ouerthrowe the Church through tyran­nie, and fraude.

Beside, forsomuch as else-where both we and others too, haue spoken much concerning the crosse belonging to the ministers of the word, and to euerie particular member of the Church; I wil in this place onelie set-downe the diuers kindes of the crosse taken from the endes;The crosse what it sig­nifieth. and also annexe consolations, and re­medies for each of them. And this word crosse, as the Church doth vnderstand the same, is that thing, which doth trouble, and afflict ei­ther inwardlie or outwardlie. Of which com­monlie there be foure sortes taken from the proper endes of them.

The first kinde,1. Kinde of crosse or affliction. the Grecians doe name [Page 409] Lytron; which generalie vnderstood is à price giuen and paied for à ransome from captiui­tie. And because there is à double captiuitie, namelie à bodilie & à spiritual, there is à two-folde Lytron, to wit, à corporal, and à spiritu­all. But in the Church wee speake especialie of the spiritual. Which is defined to be à crosse which is taken, and enioined for the washing awaie the eternall punishment, and sinnes of mankinde. And this Christ onelie hath paide, & endured. For he taking our cause vpon him selfe, suffered punishment, not for his owne, but for our offences, that he might be impu­ted to vs for à discharge of the paine, and fault due; that is for a price of redemption; that the faithful might no more bee counted guiltie, nor held captiue of the diuel for sinne, but be righteous, free, and euerlastinglie bles­sed. Of this kinde of crosse, the Lorde spea­keth,Mat. 20, 2 [...] when he saith: The sonne of man came not to be serued, but to serue, and to giue his life for the ransome of manie, and so to take mankinde from out the power of darkenes, making sa­tisfaction to God, whome man had offended: Because man through sinne was bounde both to God, and to the diuel, but diuerslie. For after that man by sinne had offended God, and declined from him, he became the cap­tiue to Satan, not as to à iudge, but as to á tormē ­tor, and that by the righteous iudgement of [Page 410] God for the offence committed against him. Againe, as touching the punishment, man was bounde to God, as to à iudge and partie offen­ded. This punishment the sonne of God to [...]e vpon him, and redeemed vs from the sen­tence of death and damnation, paieng à ran­some for our redemption. And therefore it is saide, howe he offered his blood to God for à price to redeeme vs. For which cause also Paul doeth not saie, that Christ redeemed vs from the power of the Diuel,Col. 1, 13. but deliuered vs from the power of darkenes, as from the handes of the hangman. But hereof wee haue spo­ken alreadie,In the first parte. Chap. 9. and shewed what comforts the faithful maie fetch from hence.

The seconde is called Timoria (which Pla­to saide was the punishment of vnrighte­ousnes) and is the crosse which anie man doth iustlie suffer for certaine sinnes,2. kinde of crosse, or af­fliction. to wit, when punishment in iust proportion aunswereth to the crime committed. In the Epistle vnto the Hebrewes this worde is vsed, where it is writ­ten,Heb. 10, 29▪ Of howe much [...]rer punishment suppose yee, shal hee be worthie, &c. Christ hanging vppon the crosse, paide the ransome: but the theeues which honge on each side of Christ, suffered Timorian, that is punishement due by the lawes for their euil demeanors. Of this the Prophete Ezechiel speaketh, on this wise: I will doe vnto them according to their waies, Ezek. 7, 27. & [Page 411] according to their iudgementes wil I iudge them, and they shall knowe that I am the Lorde. This punishment is laid vpon men either by means through man, or without meanes of GOD himselfe.

But what must he do that is punished iust­lie for his offences?Special things to be considered of him who is [...] puni­shed for his offences. He must doe foure things. He must in the diuel note lieng and murther▪ in himselfe weigh sinne and miserie; in God honor, iudgement, and mercie; and in the gos­pel seeke counsel and helpe.

First,The diuel giuen vnto falshood & crueltie. hee must note falsehoode and cruel­tie in the diuel, who, as hee slewe our firste parentes with à lie: so in these daies euerie moment, by lieng and tyrannie, hee lieth in waite to destroie al mankinde.1. Pet. 5, 8. For, as Peter saith, As à roaring Lyon hee walketh about, see­king whome he maie deuoure. Hee seeketh in­deede to haue al men, but them onelie he de­uoureth, whom he taketh in his snares of fals­hood. For that impure spirit doth conti­nualie labour to make al men impure as he is. He infecteth the minde with false, and erro­neous doctrine; the heart hee troubleth with raging stormes of wicked affections; the will hee bewitcheth with the euil spirite of profite and lucre; and hee endeuoreth to defile the whole life of man with wickednes, that so man beeing spiritualie killed, maie bee his companion in euerlasting tormentes.

[Page 412] The remembrance of the studie of this euill spirite, the enimie both of God and man, wil stir-vp an hatred of sinne, and engender à detestation of vngodlinesse in the heartes of men.

Secondlie,Man in affliction▪ is to cōpare his owne sinnes with the punish­ment he doth either suffer or deserue. in himselfe he must with equal balance weie sinne, and miserie; and thinke howe the miserie which hee suffereth, is à de­serued punishment of sinne, and by the great­nes of miserie esteeme the ouglines, filthi­nes, and multitude of his sinnes. Hee must thinke howe by his sinnes he hath offended God, who is soueraignelie and infinitlie good. And thereof conclude,No man so punished in this worlde according to his deserts. that his present ca­lamitie is the verie waie vnto euerlasting mi­serie, vnlesse some helpe doe come. At the remembrance hereof man wil tremble and quake. Examples of this maie be seene by rea­ding the Psalmes, of which I wil alleadge one for manie out of the 38. Psal. where Dauid de­scribeth his griefe & sorrow for his sin on this wise.Psal. 38, 2. For thine arrows haue light vpon me, & thine hand lieth vpon mee. 3. There is nothing sounde in flesh, because of thine anger; neither is there reste in my bones, 4. because of my sinne. For mine ini­quities are gone ouer mine heade; and as à weigh­tie burden theie are too heauie for mee. My woundes are putrified, 5. and corrupt because of my foolishnes. 6. I am bowed and crooked verie sore: I goe mourning al the daie. 7. For my reines are ful [Page 413] of burning, and there is nothing sounde in my flesh. I am weakened and sore broken; I doe roare for the verie griefe of mine hearte. Againe, Mine heart panteth, 10. my strength faileth, and the lighte of mine eies, euen theie are not mine owne. Here Dauid in his owne person depainteth the affections and sorowes of those men, who in equal balance do weigh thy sinnes.Howe godlie men doe▪ esteeme of their sinnes. For they conceiue not of their sinnes, as hypocrites and Atheistes doe, according to their owne iudg­ment and fleshlie imagination: but rather ac­cording to the maiestie of God that is offen­ded; to the filthines of sinne; and to the pu­nishment which they doe deserue by the sen­tence of the lawe. And although worldlie men seldome haue such motions in their mind as Dauid and Ezekiah had: yet it is necessarie, that hee who is iustlie punished for offences perpetrated, be touched with true sorow for his sinne without hypocrisie.Contrition meritorious with the Papistes. But here an er­ror of the Papistes is to bee taken heed off, who teach that such a sorowe conceaued for sinne, doeth merite forgiuenes at the handes of God. For although this sorow doe go-be­fore the petition of forgiuenesse: yet it is not the cause of mercie and forgiuenes. But who­so persisteth in weighing his sinne & his pu­nishment together, and procedeth no further, shall be swalowed vp of desperation, as Cain, Saul, Iudas, and manie others were.

[Page 414] Thirdlie, in God he must honor his iudge­ment and his mercie. Of the righteous iudge­ment of God, it is, that sinnes are punished in al men: & of his mercie, that they are puni­shed, not to their vtter destruction, but for their saluation, if they despise not the salue. Vnto his iudgement it belongeth by degrees of punishment to correct sinneful man, vntill he come to the last. And, forsomuch as hee professeth himself to be ye Physition of soules, he doth as it were imitate skilfull Physitions, who in curing doe vse certaine degrees. Firste they beginne with gentler sortes of salues: and if they doe little good, they laie sharper re­medies vnto the wound. And as Hypocrates doeth saie: The diseases which medicines do not heale, the iron doeth heale; those which the iron healeth not, the fire doeth heale; but such as the fire doth not heale, theie, of my word are incurable: So God doth sometime reproue mans wickednes, by ye word; if ye doth not help, he correcteth with sicknes, infamie, & imprisoment; if they profit not, he inflameth the fire of his iudge­ment in the mindes of men, and maketh them agast with the terror of euerlasting torments; if neither that can heale their cancre, hee lea­ueth them quite as incurable, and giueth them ouer into à reprobate minde, so that they haue neither à righte iudgement to discerne thinges, nor anie sorowe at all, by reason of [Page 415] the filth of wickednes, wherein they wallow. To bee short, God of his iudgement doeth punish that through his mercie,Isai. 28, 21. he maie saue: This is it which Isaiah doth saie: Hee doeth à straunge worke, that he maie doe his owne, that is, he doeth kill and slaie, that hee maie quicken and salue. This iudgement and this mercie of God, are ioined-together of Dauid so often as he lamenteth his sins, as maie appeare both in 51. & also in sundrie other psalms, but especi­alie in those which are called penitential Psal.

Last of all, in the Gospell hee must seeke for counsell, and for comfort. The thiefe whi­che hong on the right hand of Christ, confes­sed his offence and miserie; sawe the falsehood and crueltie of Satan; had the iudgement of God also in great reuerence. For being on the crosse,Luk. 4, 23. he spake these wordes: Wee receaue thinges worthie of that wee haue done. Beside he praised the mercie of God fleing vnto Christ, whome before his eies he sawe embrued with bloode, and defiled with the spittle of the sol­diers: whome notwithstanding he confessed to be the Physition & Sauior of the world; & so through beleefe on him was deliuered from the sicknes of his soule, though not from the punishment of his bodie. Notwithstanding hee hearde his comfortable voice, To daie thou shalt bee with mee in Paradise. In like manner those which with the theife in [Page 416] their deserued paines and affliction do return vnto Christ, be receaued and healed, although their sinnes are infinite, and their offences in quantitie passe the sande of the sea, as Ma­nasses confessed that his sinnes did. For, as the mercie of God in Christ is endles, and à ransome of infinite, and vnestimable price: So the Physition Christ, who affirmeth that he came to saue that was lost, Mat. 18, 11 doeth offer him­selfe into all men indifferentlie, and without respecte vnto anie calleth al men vnto repen­tance.Mat. 11, 28. For so he saith: Come vnto me all ye that are wearie and laden, and I wil ease you. Heere he calleth al that labor, and be loaden albeit with infinite sinnes; he excludeth none, but admit­teth al vnto repentance; and ministreth re­medie to such as come vnder his handes, and craue his helpe with the theefe. For first hee remoueth awaie the cause of affliction, name­lie sinne, when man at the voice of the Gos­pel repenteth; when he besprincleth the con­science of the penitent with his blood, and washeth it from deade workes; and withal im­puteth his righteousnes to the penitent, that by the same, he maie appeare righteous in the sight of God, although before man he beareth the punishment of sinne.

Beside with inwarde consolation by his spirite he mittigateth present affliction, & gi­ueth strength to beare ye deserued punishment [Page 417] with à quiet minde. And although the crosse seeme in mans eies an odious thing; yet is it (yea, though it be deserued) à sacrifice high­lie pleasing God; as we maie see in Dauid, and in the thiefe. The thiefe was punished for his enormous wickednes: Dauid suffereth afflicti­on for adulterie and murther which hee had committed. Notwithstanding both the crosse of that thiefe from the crosse of the other thiefe hanging on the left-side of Christ; and the affliction of Dauid from the punishment of Saule, differed in respecte of their sorrow­full and repentant heartes: which beeing laide vppon the crosse of Christe as vp­pon an altar, it becommeth consecrated, and à most acceptable sacrifice before God. Of which kinde of crosse reade more in our an­notations vpon the 25. Psalme.Which commenta­rie of this Auctor is extant in English.

The thirde kinde of crosse, is Dokimasie, which is à proofe and trial of faith and con­stancie in confession. This Dokimasie is done manie waies, so that easilie it cannot bee inclu­ded within certaine kindes.3. Kinde of Crosse. For faith is tried sometime in prosperitie, and sometime in ad­uersitie; sometime inwardlie, and outward­lie sometime.

Abraham was tried by banishment;Abraham howe tried▪ by hunger; by hazarde of his wife; by differring of the promised seede; by the barreunesse of his wife; by the commaundement to kil his [Page 418] onelie sonne Isaak, whom he loued more than his owne life. Al these thinges seemed to bee cleane-against that great promise of the land of Canaan, and of the seed which should mul­tiplie euen as the sande of the sea. But howe escapeth Abraham? howe ouercommeth hee these most greeuous tentations? Euen by faith alone. Hereby hee persuadeth himselfe that God is not onelie true of promise, but migh­tie also to performe the same; heereby he glo­rified God; hereby he meteth with the course of nature; heereby hee preferred obedience towarde God before the life of his sonne; & hereby hee strengthened himselfe in all his troubles.

Ioseph also hee was tried both on the lefte hande,Ioseph howe tried. and on the right; on the left, by his en­uious brethren, by exile, by bondage, by the inticementes of an vnchast woman, by im­prisonment, &c. on the right hande, by the gifte of intrepreting dreames, by honour, fa­uour of his prince, by preferment aboue o­ther Lordes, and by his dexteritie in the whole gouernement. Notwithstanding he keepeth à streight course, declining nei­ther vnto the lefte, nor vnto the right hande, but through faith onelie persisteth vnmoue­able.Troubles of Io [...].

Iob likewise was tried both by aduersi­tie [Page 419] and prosperitie. First with happie suc­cesse of his affaires, with manie children, store of riches, and with worshipful friendes: afterwarde with the soudden death of his children, with losse of his goodes, with loth­some botches and boiles, with à brawling and cursing wife, with lacke of friendes.

Nowe holie Iob tossed with these tem­pestes, albeit sometime hee seemed to totter: yet by faith hee rose-againe, and opposed against present miserie that blessed life, and happinesse, which GOD, who can not lie,Iob 19, 25. hath promised to his seruauntes. For I am sure, saide hee, that my Redeemer liueth, and that I shall rise-againe at the last daie. And this is it which Iohn doeth saie▪ 1. Iohn. 5, 4. That which is borne of GOD, ouercommeth the worlde, That it maie be à testimonie, as Bernard saith, of the celestial generation.

This triall of faith is compared to the triall of golde in the booke of Wisedome. As golde is tried in the fire: Wisd. 3. 6. so men are tri­ed in the fornace of affliction. 1. Pet. 1, 6. 7. And Peter: Through manifolde tentations ye are in heauines, that the triall of your faith, maie be much more pretious than golde. For as by the fire golde is tried whether it be pure or no: so by the crosse faith is tried, whether it bee without al drosse of hypocrisie.

[Page 420] But what? Is not the iudgement of God according vnto ye truth? What iustice can it be to afflict men without cause whie? Although affliction cōmeth some-time without à mani­fest fault: yet it neuer commeth without cause whie. For this crosse of trial hath manie causes & those weightie, as the trial of faith, yt stirring vp of the heare to cal-vpon God, to meditate vpon the word of God; the sense of GOD his presence in affliction; the contemplation of eternal happines; the preseruation from greater euils▪ Therefore albeit the crosse of it selfe be euill: yet forsomuch as it healeth and driueth-awaie poisō, it is necessarie, as the au­ctor of the Epistle vnto the Hebrues teacheth. For as myrrhe, notwithstanding it be sharpe and bitter; yet it healeth woundes, and pre­serueth from putrifaction: So the crosse of the sainctes, though it bee irkesome to the flesh, and greeuous: yet it destroieth no [...], but healeth rather.Exo. 15, 25. And as the waters which were verie bitter in Marah,Eccles. 38, 5 after that the woode was throwen therevnto, became sweete: so there can no crosse happen to the sainctes of God in this life, but it becommeth moste pleasant, if the woode of the crosse of Christ bee added, as à sauce: but if that bee taken awaie the waters become bitter, and vn­sauerie, that is euerie crosse is verie sowre, and intollerable, vnlesse it bee tempered as [Page 421] it were with the crosse of Christ. Mani­folde examples of this kinde of trial maie be red in the 11. Chapter of the Epistle to the Hebrewes.

The last kinde of crosse is called Martyrie. 4. Kinde of Crosse. Hereby testimonie is borne to the doctrine of the Gospel, the ende whereof is, that by it, as by à seale as it were of God, manie maie bee inuited to embrace the religion of Christ. Aug. in Psal. 119. Au­gustine expresseth the signification of the name on this wise: Testimonies in Greke are cal­led Martyria, which word we in these daies vse as à Latine worde. Whereof it is that, wee call such as are humbled for the testimonie of Christ by sundrie afflictiōs, and haue foughten euen to the death for the truthes sake, such I saie we call not Testes, that is witnesses, albeit that is their name in Latine, but Martyres after the Greekes.

Nowe the children of GOD are in this worlde tried after two manner of waies,Kindes of Martyr­dome. by reproches,Wisd. 2, 19. and by tormentes. Let vs examine him, saide the wicked, with rebukes and tormentes. 1. Tim. 4, 10 And Paul, Therefore we labor and are rebuked, because wee trust in the liuing God.

The benefite comming by the martyr­dome of ye Saincts, Profite of Martyr­dome. Theodoret verie notablie expresseth, Theod. Lib. 9. de Legi­bus. when hee saith: As in time pas­sed the bushe that Moses sawe, was not con­sumed with fire:Exod. 3, 2. 3. So neither did the weapons of [Page 422] enimies consume Christians, although they were mightilie beset round-about of the wicked. But rather as after trees be hewen-downe, much moe impes doe springe-vp, than the bowes were that were cut-off: So nowe also after the slaughter of manie godlie men, moe did runne vnto the gos­pell, and that daie, by daie than euer did: yea, and the bloode of the slaine bodies was à certaine watering of the newe plantes springing-vp in the Church. So that à Martyr in suffering, doeth not suffer, for himselfe onelie, as Ambrose saith, but also for euerie man. For himselfe hee suffereth to bee crowned, for euerie man hee suf­fereth, to giue them an example: For himselfe to his rest; for euerie man to their welfare.

And although the verie feare of GOD onelie bee à sufficient cause, why that Mar­tyrs shoulde endure tormentes couragiouslie (for the feare of God shoulde worke so, that wee must contemne all other feares, after the example of ye Apostles, who at the first being sharpelie whipped,Acts. 5, 40. 41. greeued no whit thereat, but triumphed, sorowed not, but reioiced that they were counted worthie to suffer rebuke for the name of Iesus) yet the auncient writers doe make foure causes of the same, which they mention on this wise: The loue of Christ commaundeth; Fortitud [...] ouercommeth feare; Faith confirmeth the mind; & patience endureth. How manie thinges are to be in à Martyr.

But in à Martyr I require these thinges [Page 423] in order. The firste is à firme knowledge, and demonstration of the doctrine of the Church: the seconde, a liuelie faith in Christ: the thirde, a constant confession and defence of the doctrine: the fourth, courage of mind to beare the crosse: the fifth, obedience or patience vnder the crosse: the sixte, an in­uincible hope: the seauenth, inuocation of GOD, to which together with the cause he shoulde commende his soule. All which are euident in Stephan the Proto-martyr.Acts. 7, 55. 56, &c. For neither, as Augustine saith, can they haue the life of Martyrs, Who suffer as Martyrs. who haue not the liues of Chri­stians; seeing it is not the punishment, but the cause that maketh à Martyr. Wherefore the punishment of Anabaptistes, and other ob­stinate heretikes, is not martyrdome, but a iust punishment due to them by God and the lawes. Manie fanatical heads indeede approch without feare vnto the tormentes, but it is be­cause they are deluded by Sathan, who ende­uoreth by their paines to confirme erroneous opinions vnto the destruction of the Church. And therefore let vs duelie consider the cause, whie we suffer martyrdome, least through the delusiōs of ye diuel we be bewitched: for to suf­fer persecutiō, to be in prison, to be whipped, to be kept frō libertie, to be killed is no praise: but this is praiseworthie, to haue a good cause. For ye praise consisteth in ye goodnes of cause, [Page 424] not in the bitternesse of punishment. Nei­ther would I haue anie man for some cer­taine opinion not contrarie to the foundati­on of religion, to bring himselfe into danger, especialie if the iudgementes of the godlie which agree-together in the grounde, are di­uerse, which notwithstanding maie stande without shaking the foundation, I meane the article of faith.

Heere happilie some enquirer of the iudgementes of GOD,Whie God suffereth his Saints to be martyred. maie demaunde, howe it commeth to passe, that God beeing most righteous, can suffer his sainctes, whome most entirelie hee doeth loue, to bee torne after such an horrible sorte, and to be mang­led and deformed with such contumelies; and that of Sathan and his members? Heere wee must open the eie not of reason, but of faith; not the sense of fleshe, but of the spirit must be consulted withal, that we maie clere­lie beholde the trueth, and knowe that no­thing commeth to the Sainctes of God with­out his prouidence, vnder the shadow where­of they are couered. I confesse indeede it is à trim sight for the Diuel to see Abel murthe­red of his owne brother; Daniel cast into the Lyons denne; Iob spoiled of his goodes, and replenished with botches; Steuen to bee sto­ned; yea and all the sainctes with tormentes and shame, to bee executed to death: [Page 425] But I confesse too, that in the eies of God (who testifieth, Psa. 116, 15 that in his sight the death of his Saintes is pretious) it is à much more goodlie sight; yet not of it selfe, but in respect of the e­uent. And therefore both God and the diuel also wil the punishment of the saintes, but not both alike, but with à diuers affection, and purpose. For God of mercie suffereth his Saintes to be afflicted; but the diuel persecu­teth them of malice: God, that theie maie be crowned; the diuel, that theie maie be confoū ­ded: God, as à Father; the diuel, as à tyran, and hangman; God, for his owne glorie; the di­uel, to his owne confusion. Of these causes Au­gustine speaketh on this wise: Euerie wicked man in himselfe hath à will to hurt, but yet hath no power in himselfe that he maie hurte, that he would he is now accused, that he maie through the secrete dispensation of God, he is giuen to one to be punished, to another to be proued, to another to be crowned. To be punished the Israelites were deli­uered into the handes of strangers, because theie had sinned against God. To be proued, Iob was deli­uered to Satan: And Iob was proued: but Satan put vnto shame: To be crowned the Martyrs were tormented of bloudie persecutors. And therefore à great deale more happie are the martyrs in their torments, than the moste mightie monarches in their delitiousnes, riches, honour, and pleasures. Which thing Augustine also doth witnesse, [Page 426] when he saith: The men of this world are vnhap­pilie happie: but the Martyrs were happilie vn­happie. For theie were vnhappie for à time, but theie are happie for euer. According to the worde of the LORDE:Math. 5, 10 Blessed are theie which suffer persecution for righte­ousnes sake. This successe of the Martyrs is notablie described by the Psalmist in these words:Psal. 126, 5 6. Theie that doe sowe in teares, shall reape in ioie. Theie went weeping and carried pretious seede: but theie shal returne with ioie, and bring their sheaues. And hence it is that the holie Martyrs of God doe cast their eies and their minde, not vnto the time of sowing, and to the purpose of Sathan, that would vtterlie o­uerwhelme ye Church of God in the streames of blood, but especiallie vnto the most ioieful time, when the sheaues shalbee gathered to­gether with gladnes, and vnto the reuerend prouidence of God who after this maner by his wise counsel wil haue his saintes to be ex­ercised in this life, that theie maie be like his sonne, both in the crosse, & in glorie. Whence it is that the holie Martyrs of God doe com­fort them-selues in the middes of tormentes. For theie knowe,2. Cor. 4, 17. That light affliction which is but for à moment, causeth vnto them à farre more excellent, and an eternal waight of glorie; & that, as it is in the Epistle vnto the Hebrues; Chasti­sing [Page 427] bringeth the quiet fruite of righteousnes. Heb. 12, 11. Hi­therto maketh that adhortation of Peter:1. Pet, 4, 13 Re­ioice, in asmuch as ye are partakers of Christes suf­ferings, that when his glorie shal appeare, ye maie be glad and reioice. By the remembrance of this prouidence of God, let vs strengthē our minds against the offence of the crosse, & think-vpō à ioiful euent, to wit, howe theie who in this world beare witnes to Christ,Howe the Martyrs are to be worshipped. shal in ye worlde to come be eternalie blessed with Christ. Fur­thermore it maie be asked with what seruice are ye martyrs to be worshipped, especialie for so much as we see temples to be erected, wher­in the names of martyrs, and of others are pla­ced, and festiual daies ordained in their honor, & worship? Vnto this question out of Cyril, where he refelled the slaunders of Iulian, I doe thus answere: We doe saie how the holie martyrs be no Gods; neither haue we vsed to worship them. But we praise them with great honor, for so much as valiantlie theie haue foughten for the truth, and kept the synceritie of the faith. And Augustine: The examples of the saintes are not set before vs, that we should of them be iustified, but that follow­ing their foote-steps we maie knowe, how he hath iustified vs, who iustified them. Therefore if either temples be erected vnder the names of Martyrs, or Feastes bee instituted in their momorie, I mislike it not, so it be done not for worshippe sake, but onelie to [Page 428] retaine them [...]in remembrance, and to recite their actes, that others maie both thanke God for their constancie, and imitate their exam­ples, if anie occasion shal seeme to require the same. The thinges which Monkes doe tell of martyrs, are but meere fables and illusions; As that Martyrs at the houre of their martyr­dome haue begged of God, that so manie as beare their passions in memorie, and worship them vpon fasting, and ember daies, maie be deliuered from certaine diseases. Which their lies are so abhominable, as nothing can be more. For did the holie martyrs make such a request, theie were extreame blasphemers of God his holie Name.

Besides the Papistes doe faigne howe the martyrs of God for three causes are to be wor­shipped.Martyrs are not to be worshipped. The first whereof is the neede we stand in; the second, the glorie of the martyrs; the thirde, the reuerence of God. But al these rotten reasons are ouerthrown, as it were with a thunder-bolt from heauen, by this saieng of the Lord:Mat. 4, 10. Thou shalt worship the Lorde thie God, and him onelie shalt thou serue. If then necessitie doe presse thee downe, followe the example of Dauid:Psal. 121, 2. who saith, Mine helpe commeth from the Lord, which hath made the heauen, and the earth. For that is the commandement of the Lord,Psal. 50, 15. Call-vpon mee in the daie of trouble. And the truth it selfe doeth saie:Iohn. 16, 23. Whatsoeuer yee [Page 429] shal aske the father in my Name; he wil giue it you.

And whereas theie saie, the glorie of Saints is more knowen through calling-vpon them, to witte while we obtaine that which we aske by the helpe of them, that is open blasphemie, and reproch against the sonne of God, yea and most filthie idolatrie, which all the saintes do abhorre.

Neither is that of greater force, that theie saie, the reuerence toward God doth require, that a sinner who hath offended God, should not approch vnto God himselfe without a pa­tron, As though that patron did not suffice, whome we haue in heauen,1. Iohn 2, 1. euen Iesus Christe the righteous. If anie man sinne, saith Iohn, we haue an aduocate with the Father, Iesus Christ, the iust. 2. And he is the reconciliation for our sinnes: and not for ours onelie, but also for the sinne of the whole world.

And therefore the Papistes doe both de­ceaue, and are deceaued of Satan, who hath brought the worship of Saints into the world, euen vtterlie to abolish, or at the least to ble­mish the office of our onelie Mediator Iesus Christ; to make the Saintes infamous; and fi­nallie, that ye idolatrous worshippers of Saints maie be partakers of his eternal tormentes.

So then omitting fables, and delusions of the diuel, let vs imitate the examples of the saintes in al their wel-doing; and prepare we [Page 430] our selues to enter into troubles for the truth of God, so long as we goe on warfare vpon this earth. And that this is the true vse of the memorie of Saintes, Augustine also doth wit­nesse, when he saith: There is none haue à better waie to instruct the people of God, than Martyrs: examples are of more force th [...]n wordes▪ and bet­ter is it by deede, than by voice to teach.

Besids it is demanded,Whether idolatrous Princes are to be obeied. whether it be lawful for any mā to se [...] himself against tyrāts, which maintaine idolatrie, especialie seing that Chri­stians are commanded to obeie euen the cruel: For so Peter saith: Be ye subiect to your Ma­sters withal feare, 1, Pet. 2, 18. not onelie to the good & cour­teous, but also to be froward. This commande­ment of the Apostle, wherby we are comman­ded to obeie euen the froward, is not so to be vnderstoode, as though we should obeie them in matters against our saluation,Obedience to Magi­strates. but theie are to be followed, so long as theie command ei­ther such thinges as are honest, or thinges a­gainst right, if so be theie onelie make vs mise­rable in respect of our bodies, not vngodlie in respect of our soules. Therfore Polycarp doth [...]aie: That honour is to bee giuen to the Mage­strate, which is not contrarie to religion.

If therfore he command thee to do against religion,Acts. 5, 29. answere with Peter, we ought rather to obeie God than man. For we obeie the Magi­strat, euen because God hath commanded that [Page 431] we should. And therefore if he command that which God hath forbidden, theie are held ex­cused by the commandement of à superior▪ namelie God; and deliuered from obedience to the inferior, which is man, be he notwith­standing for authoritie mightie.

But by the waie,Tyr [...] how to be resi­sted. it is to be noted that ty­ra [...]tes are to be resisted two manner of waies. One is, when subiectes doe improue wicked decrees, as those three yong-men of whome Daniel speaketh,Dan. 3, 12. 16. 17. 18. refused to adore the image erected by the tyrant; and chose to be cast into the burning fornace rather then theie would obeie the wicked commandement of the Ty­rant. For this commandement,1. Cor. 10, 14 Flie from idola­trie, bindeth al men be, theie of what state o [...] degre so-euer. The other waie to resist tyrant [...] is, when subiectes flie vnto their weapons, wherebie theie remoue-awaie wicked com­mandementes.

Here à question is moued, whether it be lawfull for the maintenance of religion to re­sist tyrans, and by sworde to hinder wicked and vngodlie decrees? In this place I distin­guish betweene them that are vnder one chief head, whether he be à King, or an Emperor, or anie other Monarch.Who maie by weapon if neede so require re­sist Tyran [...].

For some are subiectes simplie: some are Magistrates next vnto the cheef Magistrate, & theie are caled popular magistrates, such were [Page 432] in time passed at Lacedemonia the Ephors; at Athens the Demarches; at Rome the Tribunes of the people, and are at this daie the Septe [...] ­ [...]irie in the Romane Empire, the chiefe Sena­tor [...] next vnto Kinges in euerie Realme. These for somuchas. theie are placed of God, first to be the keepers of the first and second tables, yt is, to see that true religion be professed [...] and honest discipline in vse; then to moderate, and if neede require, to bridle the raging de­sires of kinges and monarches when theie set-downe anie thing against the lawes and reli­gion, these I saie both maie, yea and are bound first by counsel, so much as maie be, to set thē ­selues against tyrants; and by their wisedome stop their foolish enterprises. But if by thei [...] wise counsel theie preuaile nothing with the tyrants, then are theie bound yea with wea­pons to defend godlie subiectes, and remoue-awaie idolatrie, & restore true religion: which thing if theie doe not, theie discharge their duties but fraudulentlie.

And although the Church doeth not en­crease by warres: yet outward violence, which is offered to religion by tyrantes, maie by the magistrate placed betweene the cheefe head, and priuate men, be repelled by force. Which thing both nature teacheth, and the office of the popular magistrate requireth, and the ex­amples of holie men doe confirme: wherefore [Page 433] let the magistrates, and moderators of the cheefe head, haue this saieng of the Lorde be­fore their eies:Mat. 22, 21 Giue vnto Caesar, the things which are Caesars, and giue vnto God, those things which are Gods.

CHAP. 4.
1. An allegorical representatiō of the office of mi­nisters; 2. The sundrie significations of the worde, Wel, or fountaine, in the Scriptures.

‘AND DIGGETH A WEL.’

THis fourth member touching the teachers of the Church, is an allegorical image of the ministers of the worde. This pleasant al­legorie doeth admonish vs of manie thinges. First it sendeth vs vnto the verie fountaine,God à wel, and in what sense. namelie vnto God himselfe. And God is cal­led á well, both because he hath al good things from himselfe; and also for that he doth com­municate from thēce with his creatures with­out anie hinderance to himselfe. For God mi­nistreth to al, lacking nought, and receauing nothing of anie man. Of this fountaine the Psalme speaketh:Psal. 42▪ 2. My soule thirsteth for God, e­uen for the liuing God. And ye Lord by the Pro­phet Ieremiah doth saie:Ier. 2, 13. My people haue com­mitted [Page 434] two euils: Ierem. 2, 13. they haue forsaken mee the foun­tane of liuing waters, to digge them pittes, euen broken pittes that can holde no water. Iohn. 4, 10. 14. And the Lorde in the Gospel calleth himselfe à Well. The water issuing from this fountane,The water of God, what; Ioel. 2, 28. is both the gift of the holie ghost; Therefore saith the Prophet: I wil powre-out my spirit vpon all flesh; and also the doctrine of the Gospel, or the promise of Christ. These are wholesome wa­ters indeede, wherewithall the hot, and trou­bled consciences are cooled. And ye doctrine puffeth not vp, but is spiritual, and withal coo­leth the heart from the lustes of the worlde, & inflameth with the loue of GOD. Which wholesome waters Peter calleth the wordes of eternal life,Iohn. 6, 68. when he saith: Master, to whome shal wee goe? Thou hast the wordes of eternal life. Therefore in the Reuelation Christ saith:Reuel. 21, 6. I wil giue to him that is à thirst, of the wel of the water of life freelie.

And as this liuing water is offered through the preaching of the Gospel:The water of life howe receaued. so by faith it is drawen, and taken, according to the wordes of the Lorde:Iohn. 6, 35. He that beleeueth in me, shal neuer thirst. Hitherto maketh that saying of Isaiah, With ioie shall yee drawe waters out of the wels of saluation. Isai. 12, 3. 4. And yee shall saie in that daie, Praise the Lord; cal-vpon his name.

Secondlie it signifieth that men are alto­gether vncleane and drie, vnlesse they bee [Page 435] watered with the waters of this fountane, and bee filled. Because no man, as Bernard saith, is cleane from filth, all men haue neede of the well of mercie, and with à like desire shoulde hasten vnto this well with Noah, Daniel, & Iob. And the Lorde saith, Whosoeuer drinketh of the water that I shal giue him, Iohn. 4, 14. shall neuer be more à thirst. Of this water also the Prophet Zecha­riah did prophecie in these wordes: And in that daie shall there waters of life go-out from Ie­rusalem, Zach. 14 8. that is the preaching of the Euange­lical doctrine, which hauing proceeded from Iudea, and Ierusalem, shall bee sowed after­warde ouer the whole worlde.

Thirdlie it calleth vs back from puddles, and cisterns, which either haue no water at all, or if they haue, it is muddie, and vncleane, yea and infected with poison, that is, it reclai­meth vs from the doctrines of men, and di­uels, the which doe kill such as drinke there­of with their poison.

Moreouer Dauid in this allegorical picture hath an eie first vnto the type of the ministe­rie of the Gospell, which is proponed in Ge­nesis,Gen, 2, 10. where it is saide, That out of Eden went à riuer that watered the whole worlde. Christ our Lorde is that liuing fountane buried in the earth, but from the harte of the earth it sprin­geth à liuing well to water the face of [Page 436] the whole earth, that is to refresh so manie as dwel vpon the earth with the most comforta­ble waters of his Gospel, that theie neuer thirst more. Secondlie, vnto that fountaine of water, which issued from the harde rocke, and followed the people. Which rocke, as the A­postle teacheth,1. Cor. 10, 4. was à figure of Christ. Whose water did signifie the most delectable liquor of the Gospel. Thirdly, he had respect vn­to the condition of men in his time, which dwelled far-of from Ierusalem. For theie tho­rough the vales of [...]eares went vnto Ierusalem at the hie feastes, and in their tedious iourneie with great labor digged the earth to finde wa­ter for the quenching of their thirst. And ther­fore in the spirite sawe how the great paines of the ministers was signified, who not with­out infinite troubles and persecutions should drawe water out of the fountaines of saluati­on, wherebie theie might refresh those which thirst after their soules health.

CHAP. 5.
1. Howe the teachers in the Church are blessed, & prosper; 2. Their enimies who theie be; 3. Whether in the time of persecution, theie maie flie or no; 4. Comfortes for the Ministers in their conflictes.

[Page 437] DOVTLESSE WITH BLESSINGS SHAL THE TEACHER BE CROWNED.

7 THEIE GOE FROM VICTORIE VNTO VICTORIE.

THis fift member of the description, contai­neth à promise of blessing for the teachers of the Church, & of good successe in the mi­nisterie.

This promise cōprehendeth as most plen­tiful doctrine, so most sweete comfort. The doctrine is, how the ministerie of the worde should prosper. Of this efficacie the Prophet Isaiah speaketh on this wise:Isai. 55, 10. As the raine com­meth down, & the snow from heauen, & returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it to bring-forth, and bud, that it maie giue seede to the sower, 11. and bread vnto him that eateth: So shal my worde be, that goeth-out of my mouth: it shal not returne vnto me voide, but it shal accom­plish that which I will, and it shal prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. As if he saide, The worde of promise, which at my commandement ye are to preach, shal euermore be of force. For as the raine which at my bidding watereth the earth, and maketh it fruiteful, so that of á litle seede the husbandmen gather such an haruest, that not onlie, theie feede their owne familie therewithal but also haue sufficient seede for the yeare ensuing: so also shal the seede of my [Page 438] worde bee fruitfull, and prosper, so that the sowers of the worde maie bring-home abun­dance of fruite.

Afterward when he addeth:
They goe from victorie vnto victorie,

He signifieth how the teachers of ye Church shall not want enimies, whome notwithstan­ding they shall ouercome through the power of GOD, wherewith they are strengthe­ned.

Moreouer the enimies with whome the souldiers of the Church,Enimies of the Church who. that is, the preachers of the worde do encounter, they are the diuel and his garde, tyrantes, sophisters, hypocrits, and Epicures. Against these enimies the mi­nisters of the Gospell enter into the feelde be­ing armed with spirituall armor; of which ar­mor wee haue alreadie spokenIn the first parte, Chap. 3. Page. 18. 19.. The Diuel he laieth snares both for the doctrine, and for the life of the ministers of the worde, that by either,Purpose of Satan. or by both, he maie ouerthrowe vs. A­gainst this enimie we are to fight by synceri­tie of doctrine, by innocencie of life, and by ardent calling-vppon the Lorde of hoastes. Submit your selues to God, Rom. 4, 7. saith Iames, resist the diuel, and he wil flie from you. And as he is obe­dient [Page 439] to GOD which giueth credite to his worde, and liueth according vnto the same: So hee resisteth the Diuel, inuading the worde and the life, who retaineth synceritie of doctrine, liueth innocentlie, and calleth earnestlie vppon GOD. But when this thadgeth not well with him, that is, when hee is not able either to corrupte the do­ctrine, or to marre the life, hee flieth, and confesseth himselfe to bee ouercome. And, because hee is much more mightier than man is, this promise is deepelie to be engra­uen in the heart, And he will flie from you, that is, nothing will hurt you, he shall not ouer­throwe you by his subtilties, so longe as yee a­bide grounded vpon faith.1. Iohn. 5, 4. For faith is the vi­ctorie of the world, that is of the diuel and of al his warriers.

But for somuch as there is perpetual warre betweene Satan and the Church of Christ, we ought then especialie to be in armes, when he seemeth to flie awaie. For he flieth not as one without al hope of anie buckling againe, but that after an other waie he maie returne out of his ambushes with greater force. For as he is vnconstant and craftie, and of greate experi­ence: so hee setteth vppon the ministers of the Gospell nowe this waie, and then an other waie, and therebie sometime hee [Page 440] he maketh great slaughter, as maie appeare in heretikes of al ages, among whome there haue ben manie verie learned, & godlie men, but being snarled and vtterlie blinded with the nets of Satan, and arguments of blind rea­son, theie haue yeelded. And therefore the souldiers of God, and guiders of the Church of Christ, wil stand in the fore-fronte against the diuel, vnder the banner of Christ, keeping faith and à good conscience by all maner prai­ers and supplications, praieng alwaies in the spirite, and in watching therin with al earnest­nesse, that vtterance maie be giuen to them in the opening of their mouth with boldenesse, that theie maie make the mysterie of God to be knowen, for which theie are sent in em­bassage.

Tyrants also,Tyrans eni­mies to the ministers of the Church. theie most furiouslie doe per­secute the ministers of the Gospel, theie kill, and dispatch manie out of the world. Not­withstanding they do not so much ouercome, as theie are ouercome.

For as their better part, to wit, the minde is à slaue to filthie affections: So the soules of the godlie in the middes of their troubles doe tri­umph in ioie. For theie both comfort them­themselues with à constant hope of the glorie prepared for them; and also with the eie of faith theie do behold the miserable destructi­on of such as persecute them.

[Page 441] Of which destruction Dauid speaketh after this wise:Psal. 52, 5. God shall destroie thee for euer; hee shal take thee and plucke thee out of thy taberna­cle, and roote the out of the lande of the liuing. The righteous also shal see it, 6. and feare, and shall laugh at him, 7. saying, Beholde the man that tooke not God for his strength, but trusted vnto the mul­titude his riches, and put his strength in his ma­lice. 8. But I shall be like à greene oliue tree in the house of God: For I trusted in the mercie of God, for euer and euer. And therefore Nero in kil­ling Paul, was ouercome of Sathan, through whose instigation hee persecuted, and slewe the Apostle: But Paul was crowned, and went from victorie vnto victorie. For not onelie hee himself receaued à crowne of righteousnes frō the righteous iudge: but his blood beside was à certaine watering of the Lords feelde, wherby the yong plants of the Church doth more & more encrease.

But here springeth à question concerning flight:Whether the prea­chers in time of per­secution maie flie, or no. Whether in the time of persecution godlie pastors maie shifte for themselues by flight to auoide the handes of tyrants, especial­lie seeing at the first showe there be contrarie sayings and exāples to in the scripture? These places should see [...]e to be contrarie,Mat. 10, 13. When they persecute you in this citie, flee vnto another: And, An hireling seeth the woulfe comming, Iohn. 10, 22. and he lea­ueth the sheepe, and flieth. The examples, [Page 442] Christ fledde into Egypt;Mat 2, 13. Paul was let-downe in a basket,14. and so escaped from his persecu­tors:Acts 9, 25. On the otherside both Christ, and Paul, yea and infinite Martyrs and doctors of the Church haue voluntarilie yeelded themselues into the handes of tyrants.

The contrarietie of these sayinges, and ex­amples maie easilie be reconciled, if we marke the causes wel. He that by fleeing seeketh his owne, and not the things which are Christes, is much to blame. Contrariewise, he that by flieng seeketh the glorie of God, and not his owne cōmoditie, offendeth not. And therfore saith Augustine: The seruant of God sinneth not, though seeing the rage of tyrantes, greedelie bent to destroie his soule, he changeth his aboade, if so be that he commend his flocke to the hie shepherde sitting in heauen, and saueth himselfe for their ad­uantage by flight.

But this commandement seemeth to bee contrarie therevnto,An obiectiō. Feare yee not them which kil the bodie, Mat. 10, 18 but are not able to kil the soule. Now what is flight, I praie you, but a feare? If therfore feare be forbiddē, flight also is forbidden.Answere. I answerere, when thou art in the hands of à Tyran, thou must contemne death, accor­ding to the cōmandement of the Lord, Feare not them which kill the bodie: but if thou art out of his clawes, thou oughtest to flie from the persecutor, not so much to saue thy selfe, as [Page 443] for thy sheepe sake, prouided alwaies that thy flight be not à betraing of the sheepe. For he maketh à tyrant, that prouoketh; and he that shunneth, correcteth him. And therefore this distinction of Augustine is to be had in mind:Au. Ep. 180. When persecution is hoat, the ministers of Christe are to flie, if so be that either there is no congre­gation where they are, or if there bee, when there be ministers enough to fulfil the ministerie, which haue not such cause to flie. But when the people shal abide, and all the ministers flie awaie, what else doe they showe themselues, but euen cursed hirelings without all care of the sheepe?

But if Tyrantes doe persecute without all respect all the ministers of the gospel, & spare the common people, what is then to be done? Hereunto Augustine doeth answere, That ha­uing made earnest prayer vnto God, they are by lot to chuse who shal flee, and who shal tarie. For in so doing both good regard is had for the present state of the Church, and also it is wel prouided, that when the teachers of the Church be once killed, it shall want no ministers for all that to instructe them.

Sophisters and Sycophantes being puffed-vp with the wisedome of this worlde,Sophisters an other sort of enimies. they subtillie laie snares to entrappe the prea­chers. The scope of whome is, that the fountanes of Israel beeing either stopped, or troubled, that is, that the heauenlie [Page 444] doctrine being either vtterlie abolished, or depraued with humane, or diuelishe deuises, the Church, whose life is the puritie of Gods worde, maie be oppressed. Their sophistical arte is fitlie compared to à brawling woman, Whome who so hideth, Pro. 27, 16. hideth the winde, and shee is as the oile in his right hande, that vttereth it selfe, as Salomon saith. For the slightes there­of are infinite. Whereof it is, that hee which would refute al Sophismes, doeth like him which woulde take the windes in à net.

Then what is to bee done? Howe are So­phisters to be resisted? The Pastors of the Church aboue al thinges must keepe in me­morie the strong and euident testimonies cō ­cerning euerie principal pointe of doctrine; from which they must not suffer themselues to be with-drawen by anie sophistrie of man: which they shall notablie withstande, if they haue ben wel instructed in true Logique.Logique. Secō ­dlie, by ardent praier they must beg of God, that by his word hee would strengthen them against ye subtile reasons of man, least the truth bee wound in by the serpent, and so choaked, that is, that by sophistrie it be neither vtterly ouerthrowen, nor at the least depraued.

Thirdlie, they are to eschewe all vnproper kindes of phrases, and vnusual of the Church, and to content themselues with the simplici­tie of speech, which the trueth doeth loue. [Page 445] Finalie, if so instructed, they are not yet able quickelie to aunswere vnto all Sophismes, let them be contented with the simplenes of do­ctrine, which is euidentlie expressed, & pro­ued with manifolde testimonies of the scrip­ture agreing-together. And the ministers of the Gospel being thus armed, they shall easilie beare-awaie the bel, from al their ad­uersaries notwithstanding the subtiltie of the slipperie serpent.

A notable example hereof I will adde, ta­ken-out of the Ecclesiastical historie, follow­ing the vsual translation: Eccles Hist. Lib. 13. What force (saith he) the simplicitie of faith hath, wee doe knowe by those thinges which bee reported to be done there. For when for the care of the religious Emperor, the Priestes from all partes of the worlde had assem­bled-together, verie noble and rich Philosophers, also came thither too, mooued through an opinion they had: among whome à certaine notable Logi­cian daie by daie woulde mooue great conflictes of disputation to our Bishops, men not vnprobablie learned in Logique. And great concourse of learned, and lettered men there was to heare; yet coulde the Philosopher by no meanes bee either brought vnto à blancke, or caught from flieng of anie man. For by his art of Logique hee so mette with the questions obiected, that when hee seemed most of al to be taken, as à slipperie Eele hee slid­awaie. But (because God woulde showe that his [Page 446] kingdome consisteth not in worde, but in power) a­mong the confessors (of the trueth) à certaine Bi­shop of à most simple nature, which knewe nothing beside Iesus Christ, and him crucified, was present. Who seing the Philosopher to insult ouer those whi­che toke our parts, & bosting himself of his craft [...] ­nes through the art of disputation, craueth of al mē rome, & faith he would speak à few words with the Philosopher. But they on our sid, which knew wel enough the simplicitie, & blunt speech of this man, began to blush somewhat, & to feare least peraduē ­ture his holy simplicitie should be made à laughing game amōg subtile felows: yet would not this father desist frō his purpose, but thus began his speech: In the name of Iesus Christ, faith he, harken ô Philo­sopher, vnto the truth. There is one God, who made both heauen and earth, and which gauè life to man, whome hee had framed out of the, lime of the earth; hee hath created all thinges both visi­ble, and inuisible, by the power of his worde, and established them by the sanctification of his spirit. This worde and wisedome, whom we call the sonne, taking pittie vppon the errors of mankinde, was borne of à virgine; and hath through the passion of his death deliuered vs from euerlasting dam­nation, and by his resurrection hath giuen vs e­uerlasting life, whom also wee trust shall come to iudge all things which we go about. Dost thou be­leeue this to be true, ô Philosopher? But hee the Philosopher) as though he had neuer learned anie [Page 447] art to gainsay, was so astonished throgh the power of the words, that he had nothing to saie, but only this that he did thinke so, & that there was none other thing true besid that which he had said. Then the old man: If thou beleeuest these things to be so, said he, arise and folow me vnto Demonicus, & receaue the signe of this faith. And the Philosopher turning about vnto his disciples, & vnto them which came to heare, harkē, saith he, ô learned men, while I was delt withal with words, I to words opposedwords, & by the art of speech did ouerthrow whatsoeuer was said: but when for words, power proceeded from the mouth of the speaker, words could not resist power, nor man preuaile against God. And therfore if any amōg you can of those things which haue ben spokē, perceaue the things which I do, let him giue credite to Christ, & folow this old man in whō God hath spokē. This storie notablie doth teach by what weapons victorie may be atchiued against So­phisters, namely by a certain persuasion or de­monstratiō of ye ground of religiō; by simpli­citie of spech; & by ardent praier, yt God maie giue strēgth to his word, as though himself did vtter the same by his owne most holy mouth.

As ye hypocrits,Hypocrits [...] fourth sorte of enimie [...] I meane stage plaiers are not taken for them which they be, but do put-on, and represent à strange person, or as Augustin saith, they hid yt which they are vnder à perso­nage, & boast in à personage yt which they are not:Hypocrites who. So the scripture by à Metaphor, calleth [Page 448] such hypocrites as by external gestures and deedes boaste themselues for sainctes, when for al that their minde is prophane and wic­ked, that is, when the outwarde man appea­reth meeke as à sheepe, when the inwarde is rauening like à woulfe.Mat. 7, 15 For by this image Christ depainted hypocrites.Hypocrisie what. Hereof hypo­crisie is saide to bee an outwarde faigning of godlines vnder à prophane and wicked mind. So that à double sinne is in hypocrisie, to wit, impietie and lying. For which cause their damnation is doubled, for they are con­demned both as wicked against God; and as liers before men. Therefore the saying of Aristotle against Xenocrates maie well be ap­plied to hypocrites, [...] &c. Faire handes he hath, but a foule heart.

These because they are not enimies, but citi­zens; not haters, but friendes; not strangers, but wil be counted of the householde of the Church; they doe more easilie ouerthrowe the simpler sorte, than doe open enimies. For it is truelie saide: A sase and à common waie to beguile, is vnder the name of friendship.

Nowe what hurt hypocrites haue done to the Church, the histories of al ages doe a­boundantlie declare. For, seeing they fight with outwarde superstition and ceremonies, wherewith the rude people are moste of all moued; and because they cloake their super­tion [Page 449] with fastinges, long prayers, almes deeds, and fained sadnes of the face, they set-vppon the doctrine of free iustification, and woulde obscure the same with à certaine witch-craft, as maie appeare in the sectes of al monkes.

But against this hypocrisie prudent sim­plicitie must be opposed, which consisteth in the knowledg of the truth, in ye loue of good­nes, & in doing righteousnes. Then by teach­ing, the visor is to bee taken from hypocrites, that the woulfe, which they do hide, maie ap­peare, filthines bee seene, the subtilties dete­cted, and inwarde wickednes bee knowen, that all maie learne howe that the kingdome of God doth consist not in outward rites, not in ceremonies, not in à sained showe; but in the true godlines of minde.

Last of all,Epicures â [...]isi kinde of enimies to religion. the Epicures they also insult o­uer the doctrine of the Church, and persecute the same; preferring pleasures, riches, and worldlie glorie, before the will of God, ce­lestiall riches, and the eternall glorie of the sainctes.These obie­ctions are somewhat confuted in the 1. parte, Chap. 12, pa. 120, 121. Theie obiecte the stumbling-block of the crosse of Christ; theie obiect the smal number of those which vnfaignedlie doe be­leeue the Gospell; theie obiecte the glorie of the popishe kingdome; theie obiecte the wisedome of the aduersaries; and finalie theie obiect the heresies, and schismes where­withal the Church is rent-asunder. But hee [Page 450] which rightlie hath learned Iesus Christ, and which measureth the felicitie of man, not with the falfe measure of humane wisedome, but by the truth of the celestial doctrine, and by ye euent or ende of each, that is of the godlie & of the wicked, wil easilie contemne all their mockes and scoffes. Of this euent you maie reade in the 37. and 73. Psalmes.

Nowe because the doctors of the Church doe encounter with these aduersaries, whose engines are ouerthrown by spiritual weapons and they breake the force of their enimies, theie are saide to go from victorie vnto victorie.

Moreouer,Comforts for godlie mini­sters in their troubles. of the doctrine whereof nowe we haue spoken, à most sweete consolation is gathered, whereby the ministers of the word maie stir-vp themselues in their conflict with the fore-mentioned enimies. For first they will comforte them selues in this, that the cause is not theirs, but the Lords; Secondlie, that they come foorth vnto battel, being ar­med not with carnall weapons, but with spiri­tuall; Thirdlie, that they haue present with them à king or capitane, vnder whome theie fight, euen Christ himselfe, who is the van­quisher of the whole kingdome of darkenes; Fourthlie, they haue an eie vnto the vncor­ruptible crown of righteousnes proposed be­fore them by Christe their chiefe capitane; Last of all, that the ende of the fight shall bee [Page 451] verie ioifull and pleasant, wherein God him­selfe wil shewe himselfe to their eies, of which thing it followeth in the description.

CHAP. 6.
1. The finall cause of the victorie of Christ his souldiers; 2. howe God is continualie present in his Church.

‘THAT GOD IN SION MAIE AP­PEARE.’

THis sixt and last parte of the present de­scription containeth the finall cause whie the souldiers of Christ haue got the victorie, namelie that God maie be acknowledged to bee the defender and keeper of his Church, according to the promise,Mat. 16, 18. The gates of hel shal not ouercome it. Hitherto belongeth that prai­er in the 115. Psalme.Psal. 115, 1. Not vnto vs, ô Lord, not vnto vs, but vnto thy Name giue the glorie, for thie louing mercie, 2. and for thy trueths sake, Wher­fore shall the heathen saie, Where is nowe their God? As if he saide, this blasphemie of men which denie the to haue care of thy Church, represse, giuing-out à testimonie of thy pre­sence in the Church.

And although God doth testifie his presence in ye whole world by his prouidēce, God how present in his Church. gouernāce, [Page 452] & preseruation of the nature of things: yet by certaine peculiar waies hee showeth that hee is present in the Church, and in euerie of the sainctes, as by preseruing the ministerie of his worde and sacramentes; by his dwelling in the sainctes through faith; by inwarde com­fort; by his miraculous defending thē against the rage of diuels, and wicked men. Of this presence these places of holie scripture doe beare recorde. Num. 14, 13 When the Aegyptians shal heare it (for thou broughtest this people by thy power frō among them) Then they shal say to the inhabitāts of this land,14. for they haue heard that thou Lorde, art among this people, and that thou, Lorde, arte seene face vnto face,Ioshua. 3, 10 &c. Againe, Herebie ye shal knowe that the liuing God is among you. Againe, That all the worlde maie knowe,1. Sa. 17, 46. that Israel hath à God. Againe, That all the gentiles maie vnder­stande, howe thou onelie art God in the vniuer­sal earth.Isai. 37, 20. And againe, Nowe therefore ô Lorde our God, saue thou vs out of his hande, that al the kingdomes of the earth maie know that thou onelie art the Lord.

This presence of God in the Church hath à double ende proposed.Ends of God his presence in the Church. One whereof vnto the householde of the Church; the other be­longeth vnto strangers and prophane people. And as touching the godlie, or of the house­holde of faith, this is the ende of God his presence in the Church, namelie that the god­lie [Page 453] maie be strengthened in faith; that theie maie praise God vnder whose winges theie are secure; that vnder the crosse theie maie cal vpon God who is present before them; and that through patience theie maie looke for vi­ctorie ouer the diuel, and the worlde. Hence commeth that consolation of great faith,Numb. 14, 9. The Lorde is with vs, feare them not.

And as touching those which are with­out, and prophane folkes, this is the ende of God his presence in the Church, that either they maie ioine themselues vnto the true Church, by repentance, hauing renounced all prophanenes and impietie; or, if they do not so, that their owne consciences maie bee wit­nesses of their iust condemnation. For it will come to passe at the length, according to the saying of the Psalme,Psal. 83, 17. that they shall be confoun­ded and troubled for euer, 18. yea, they shall bee put to shame and perishe, that they maie know that thou, which art called Iehouah, art alone, euen the most hie ouer all the earth. Psal. 52, 5. And as it is in another Psalme, Hee shall destroie thee for euer, he shall take thee, and plucke thee out of this tabernacle, and roote thee out of the lande of the liuing. 6. The righteous also shall see it, and feare, and shall laugh at him, saying, 7. Beholde the man that tooke not, God for his strength but trusted vnto the mul­titude of his riches, & put his strēgth in his malice. So yt no euil can be imagined either so plagie [Page 454] or so hurtful, as through sinne to be separated from God; to be turned from the euerlasting fountane of al goodnes vnto ye most noisome dunghil of al miseries; from the most comfor­table life vnto the most bitter death; finalie, from true happines vnto endles tormentes.

THE THIRD PART OF THIS PSALME.

CHAP. 1.
1. The partes of this third part; 2. where­vpon true praier is to be grounded.

THE thirde part of the Psalme is à praier, wherebie Dauid praieth that the Church maie be defended, it is contained in the 8, 9, 10, and 11. verses; and it consisteth of à pro­position, and of à confirmation, of which as they stand we will entreate.

The eight verse. O LORD GOD OF HOSTES, HEAR [...] MY PRAIER; HEARKEN, Ô GOD OF IA­AKOB.’

[Page 455] This proposition of ye praier is vpholdē with two reasons, the former whereof goeth-be­fore, the other followeth the proposition. For petitions are not wont to bee proponed sim­plie, and nakedlie, but most commonlie they are adorned with argumentes of persuasion, often they are set out with epithetes applied to the thinge which is asked, the more to moue.

The former reason,1. Reason. is contained in these wordes, O Lord God of hoastes, and it is taken from the power of God, as if hee saide; For­somuch as thou art that almightie Lorde of hoastes, whome nothing can resiste, but all thinges doe yeelde to thy gouernment, it is à verie easie thing for you to maintaine and de­fende your Church, against all manner eni­mies which it hath. And therefore I beseech you, showe foorth this your power in defen­ding the Church against the furie both of the diuels and wicked men, which partlie by snares, and partlie in open feelde doe set-vp­pon your Church.

The latter reason whereby the petition is adorned,The latter reason. and vpholden, is this, O God of Iaa­kob. This reason is taken from the loue of GOD towarde the Church. For when he mentioneth Iaakob, hee hath à respecte vn­to the promise made vnto Iaakob the Ne­phew of Abraham, and to his seede, that is, [Page 456] to so manie as by the faith of the promise bee receaued into the familie of Iaakob, that is into the Church. And the promise made to Iaakob is founded in the blessed seede Iesus Christ; therfore it is so much as if he had saide: Heare my prayer, for our Lord and mediators sake euen Iesus Christ.

In all our praiers let vs haue à considerati­on of these two causes; the former whereof teacheth how God is able to accomplish that which wee desire; the other how that he wil, & that because of his fatherlie promise. These two causes the Lorde ioineth-together in the forme of praier which he commendeth to his disciples,Matth. 6, 9. when hee saith: After this manner praie yee, Our Father which art in heauen. For, when we saie, Our father, we signifie ye fatherly goodwil of God toward his sonnes, that is to­ward al ye faithful: And when we ad, Which art in heauen, we shew ye diuine maiestie & power of God wherby he is able to do whatsoeuer he will. For he will doe whatsoeuer he hath pro­mised. For the promise is voluntarie and free.

Furthermore of these two thinges are ga­thered. The first is how theie alone can right­lie and effectuallie praie, who haue the pro­mise; the seconde, that the force of praier de­pendeth not vppon the dignitie of man, but of the mercie of GOD which promiseth to heare all, that through faith vppon the pro­mise, [Page 457] doe call vpon him.

Touching the Lorde of hoastes; his fight; his armies, and triumphes, looke our annota­tions vpon the first verse of this Psalme1. part, cap. 3. Page. 11. 12, &c..

CHAP. 2.
1. The grounds of praiers; 2. God hea­reth the faithful of what cal­ling soeuer.

The ninth verse. BEHOLD, O GOD OVR PROTECTOR; AND LOOKE-VPON THE FACE OF THINE ANNOINTED.’

THe repetition of the praier is also adorned with two reasons, the former whereof con­taineth both the aboue mentioned, For it is taken both from the power, and also from the willingnes of God. For when he saith, O our protector, or shield, he doth insinuate both the power whereby hee can, and the willingnes wherebie God will assist. And when hee ad­deth also, Looke vpon the face of thine annointed: He fetcheth his reason in like sorte from the vertue of the promise. For when God an­nointed Dauid for king ouer his people, hee promised withall to helpe him so often as through faith hee called vppon him. And therefore in à certaine Psalme hee saith,Psal. 32, 7. Thou [Page 458] preseruest me from trouble. Psal. 32. 7. Saue thou mee that being saued, I maie praise thy name. Verie manie such like sentences are in the Psalmes.

Moreouer this reason is fitlie applied to e­uerie godlie man in his lawful vocation. For, as Dauid was called of God vnto the kingdome; and therfore he craueth of God that he would defende his owne ordinance: So euerie one that is called vnto anie function, whether it be ciuill or ecclesiastical, shoulde perswade him­selfe that his calling is of God, and therefore that God wil defende his owne ordinance, & heare such as call vppon him through faith. This comfort they doe lacke, which rush-vp­pon euerie function through fraude without lawful calling.

CHAP. 3.
1. What an honor it is to be of the true Church of God; 2. Causes whie the wicked conti­newe in their securitie.

The tenth verse. FOR ADAIE IN THY COVRTES IS BETTER THAN A THOVSANDE ELS­WHERE. I HAD RATHER TO BE OF NO REPVTATION IN THY HOVSE, THAN TO DWELL IN THE TABERNACLES OF THE VNGODLIE.’

[Page 459] THE reason of the last proposition, Looke v­pon the face of thine annointed, that is, grant that I, who am made à king of you, maie be restored to my kinglie dignitie. And although in this mine exile I coulde get mee the fauor of the kinges my neighbors, yea and dwell & liue pleasantlie together with them: yet more doe I esteeme the Church of God, where the worde is preached, and according to the word of God both praiers be made, and sacrifices of­fered, than the glorious palaces of kinges: yea and so am I affected, that I woulde chuse to haue the basest and vilest office in the Church of God, than without the Church in the pal­laces of wicked kinges which neither knowe nor call vppon the God of Israel, to florishe with riches, power, honors, and pleasure.

So that this place doeth teach what an ho­nour it is to bee à citizen of the Church of God; so that the most contemptible function in the Church is to bee desired before ye grea­test glorie of worldlie kings & princes, which without the householde of God, doe either serue idols, or bee meere Atheistes, know­ing none other GOD besides their bel­lie.

But how came this affection in ye most holie king Dauid? The reason of this affection is not seene with the eies of ye body, but only with ye [Page 460] eies of faith; it is not learned in the courtes, & pallaces of worldlie kinges, but in the sanctu­arie of God: as Dauid himself acknowledgeth, when he saith: Psal. 73, 16 I thought to know this (namelie whie the Church is oppressed, and the wic­ked doe florish) But it was too painefull for me,17. vntil I w [...]nt into the sanctuarie of God, then vn­derstoode I their endes.18. Surelie thou hast sette them in slipperie places, & castest them downe in­to desolation.19. How souddenlie are theie destroied? They perished for their sinne:23. yet I was alwaie with thee,24. thou hast helde by my right hand. Thou wilt guid me by thy counsel, and afterward receaue me to glorie.

Dauid therefore by the eies of faith not onelie considereth the glorie of the church, & the future happinesse of the citizens of the same; but also thinketh vppon the most la­mentable destruction of those men, who call not vppon God in his congregation. Of both which, that is, of the happines of the Church, and damnation of the vngodlie, Dauid him­self speaketh on this wise:Psal. 73, 27 Lo, theie which with­drawe themselues from thee, 28. shall perish; thou de­stroiest al them which go à whoring from thee. As for me it is good for me to draw-neere vnto GOD; therefore I haue put my trust in the Lorde God, that I maie declare al thie workes.

But what is the cause whie so manie migh­tie men of the worlde,Whie the wicked goe on in wic­kednes. doe not consider their [Page 461] endes, the better to order their liues as they shoulde? The causes hereof are three, as Paul saith, namelie, the vanitie of mind; the blind­nes of their vnderstanding; and the hardnes of their heart. The vanitie of minde bringeth to passe, that such honest things as are thought to bee embraced by à dreame as it were, doe forth-with vanishe-awaie without profite. Blindnes of vnderstanding doth so carrie thē awaie, that of those principles of vertue im­printed naturallie in the mindes of men, they followe nothing but errors. And through their hardnes of heart, they are touched with no feare of God. Whereof it is, that with à reprobate minde wee embrace for goodnes in deede, colored good thinges; for true riches, false; vaine glorie for true praise; beastlie and moste filthie pleasure for true delight; and for the right preheminence, vaine arrogan­cie.

Of this vanitie, blindnesse, and hardnesse, the Lorde by the Prophete Ieremiah, spea­keth on this wise:Ierem. 4, 27. My people is foolishe, theie haue not knowen mee, they are foolishe children, and haue none vnderstanding; they are wise to doe euill, but to doe well theie haue no knoweledge. Whence it proceedeth that, according to the saying of Salomon, Theie reioce in doing euill, and delight in the frowardnesse of the wicked. To which kinde of men Isaiah crieth with à [Page 462] lamentable voice, Wo, when he saith: Wo vn­to them which are wise in their own eies, Isai. 5, 21. & pru­dent in their owne vnderstanding. For one daie through the most righteous iudgement of God they shall bee condemned to euerlasting tormentes. Notwithstanding Epicures which delight wholie in their filthie delightes, ei­ther because they thinke there is no God at all; or if there be à God, they suppose hee will not be angrie, seeing hee is all mercifull; or if hee will be angrie, that hee will not alwaies keepe hatred in remembrance, they doe not regarde anie whit the wrath of God. But this extreme vanitie both the daie of doome in the sight of all creatures, of diuels, of An­gels, and of men, shall reprooue, and also the verie conscience, which is à witnesse of à iudgement to come doth speake against.

CHAP. 4.
1. Whie Dauid chooseth to bee of no reputation in the Church of God; 2. The manifold be­nefits and blessinges which the sainctes of God enioie, yea in this life.

The 11. verse. [Page 463] BECAVSE THE LORD GOD IS A SVNNI AND A SHIELD, THE LORD WIL GIVE GRACE AND GLORIE, AND NO GOOD THING WILL HE DEPRIVE THEM OF, WHICH WALKE INNOCENTLIE.’

THIS is an Aetiologe. For it rendreth the reason whie Dauid doth choose to bee the most abiect in the house of the Lorde, that is in the Church, rather than to enioie euen the greatest pleasure and delightes in the taber­nacles of ye vngodlie. And this reason is fetcht frō ye enumeratiō of the good things or bene­fits which are peculiar to the citizens of God his Church, the which the forainers not one­lie doe lacke, but also are wrapped in the con­trarie miseries. Wherefore they are to bee il­lustrated by waie of Antithesis, that each maie appeare, namelie both howe great the glorie of the Church, and contrariwise howe much the miserie of those is who are without the Church.1. Blessing of the Church.

The first good thing or benefite of the Church is, that God himselfe is in the same as à most bright Sunne; which thing I do refer both vnto the cleare knowledge of God; and vnto the affections agreeing with the know­ledge; and also vnto the manifold consolati­ons [Page 464] which the godlie doe take through the light of this sunne. For as from the Sunne which we do behold, proceedeth to the world both light, heate, and beames, wherebie all things are quickened, and nourished: So from God, who is an inuisible Sunne of the Church, there proceedeth both light, that is à cleare knowledge of God; and heate, that is, the burning affections of hope, faith, and loue; and also beames, which are the manifold con­solations wherewithall the soules of the faith­are quickened, nourished, and made merie.

This Sunne, as it ariseth vpon such as feare God: So it goeth-down from negligent, wic­ked, and prophane folkes. And therefore great heede is to be taken, least the godlie doe suffer this Sunne to be darkened, and hidden from them. For as it is à most certaine token of death to à sicke man; as Hippocrates saith, if he dreame that this visible Sunne is hidden, or obscured: So à most certain death of the soule is nigh at hand, if our Sunne Christe be darke­ned by abolishing or corrupting of the true doctrine. So that so manie as are desti­tute of this Sunne, as are all theie which be without the Church, they can not bee other­wise than most miserable. For, they being blinde and ignorant of God, both doe groape in the grosse darkenes of ignorance; and are beaten-downe with an horrible amazement [Page 465] of their mindes, when sinne sheweth it selfe abroade in their consciences. And although the consciences of manie seeme to be seared as it were with an hot iron, as if it were voide from all feeling of sinne: yet at the point and paine of death, it is awakened, yea & it driueth the miserable soule vnto desperation.

The seconde benefite of the Church is,The second blessing of the Church. that God himselfe who is the Sunne, is also to the Church in place of. à shielde wherewith the householde of the Church are compassed, protected, and saued against the kingdome of darkenes. Hereof in the 5. Psalme it is spoken,Psal. 5, 11. where it is saide: Let all them that trust in thee, reioice and triumph for euer, and couer thou them: and let them that loue thy name, reioice in thee. For thou, 12. Lorde, wilt blesse the righteous, and with fauour wilt compasse him, as with à shielde. A­gaine,Psal. 18, 35. Thou hast giuen mee the shielde of thy saluation, and thy right hand hath staied mee. For it seemeth good in the sight of God, that the godlie shold not only be cōpassed about with ye crowne of his good wil, but also be happie through euerlasting blessednes. When Paul writeth vnto the Ephesians,Ephes. 6, 16. Take vnto you the shielde of faith, wherewith yee maie quench all the fierie darts of the wicked, hee signifieth, yt then we are cōpassed-about with the shield of faith,1. Tim. 1, 18 when reteining an vnshakened faith of doctrine with à confidence of mercie,19. and [Page 466] à good conscience, wee fight à good fight.

Now what thing, I praie you can be more miserable than the enimies of God, who haue not this shield? For the king of darkenes hath ful power ouer them, and casteth them down headlong from one wickednes vnto another, til he bring them to vtter destruction.

The thirde and fourth benefites are Grace, The 3. & 4. blessing of the Church. and glorie. For thus hee saith, The Lorde will giue grace and glorie. Grace is the fauour of God both pardoning the sinnes of the faithfull for the deathes sake of his sonne;Grace what. & also adorning the Church with an vnspotted garment, namelie with Christ his obedience or righteousnes. Nowe forsomuch, as the faithfull doe please through this grace, they, can not bee otherwise than happie and bles­sed: But they which are without the Church, be destitute of this grace, guiltie, & damned in respect of their wickednes.

Glorie is the attainement of adoption,Glorie what. the inhabitation of the holie spirite, and the he­reditarie possession of eternall happinesse. But so manie as bee not within the Church, are the bondslaues of Sathan, moued with the spirite of the Diuell, and reserued for euerla­sting shame.

The fifth good thing, or commoditie of the Church, which the vngodlie doe want, is that which the Psalmist meaneth, when hee [Page 467] saith: No good thing will be depriue them of, that walke innocentlie Here by the fruit, iudgement is giuen of the tree. For a good tree bringeth­foorth good, and profitable fruite: but à rotten tree can yeelde nothing but hurtful & vnpleasant fruite,

To walke innocentlie,To walk in­nocentlie & what is sig­nifieth. or soundlie, or perfectlie (for the worde which the Psalmist vseth in this place, is oftentimes expressed of interpretors by the worde perfection) is when the man which is iustified, preferreth obedi­ence towarde God before euen the most plea­sant thinges of the worlde. This definition maie bee proued out of the 22. Chapter of Genesis.A twofolde perfection. Nowe there is a double perfection of Christians, of imputation, & of obedience. He is perfect by imputation, that beleeueth in Iesus Christ;Rom. 10, 4. according to that, Christ is the ende of the lawe, for righteousnes vnto euerie one that beleeueth. Hee is perfect by obedience, which loueth obedience to God warde more than all thinges of the worlde. Yet is not this perfection an absolutnes of worke accor­ding to the rule of the law: but it is a purpose, an endeuorment, and a studie of the minde, whereby a man daielie more and more goeth forwarde vnto the marke of perfection.

Ths endeuorment throught the approba­tion of God, is called perfection.

[Page 468] And that this Christian perfection is to be referred vnto the will, and affection of the heart, these testimonies ensuing doe witnesse: Feare the Lorde, Iosh. 24 14. and serue him in vprightnes & in trueth of heart. 1. Chr. 28, 9 Againe, And thou Salomon my sonne, knowe thou the God of thy father, and serue him with à perfect heart, and with à willing minde. Hezekiah in the prophecie of Isaiah, doeth testifie howe hee fulfilled the same, when hee saide,Isai. 38, 3. I beseech thee, Lorde, remem­ber now how I haue walked before thee in trueth, and with à perfect hart, and haue done that which is good in thy sight. And this perfection Paul re­quireth when he saith,1. Tim. 18. Fight à good fight, ha­uing faith and à good conscience. 19. For through faith the obedience of Christe, which is the fulfilling of the Lawe, is obteined: & à good conscience is kept by a willingnes to obeie, whereby a godlie man preferreth obedience towarde God before all thinges; although mā cannot fulfill the same in such absolute forme as the rule of the lawe doeth require.

Moreouer, when the Psalmist doeth saie: No good thing will he depriue them of which walk innocentlie, it is to bee vnderstood concerning the rewarding of the obedience showen through faith. For in this place hee speaketh not of the causes of saluation: but of the effect of faith, wherewith being iustified, we are sa­ued: And therefore this and such like senten­ces, [Page 469] of which sort there be manie in the scrip­ture, be thus to bee vnfolded. They yt walke innocentlie shall not bee depriued of good thinges. Whie so? Because they which walke innocentlie, doe beleeue: And al beleeuers are righteous through Christ his righteousnesse imputed vnto them: To the righteous, life and abundance of all good thinges, in such sorte is proposed, that they shal desire nothing to the consummating of true happines. And therefore so manie as walke innocentlie shall not be depriued of good thinges. After which sort the like sentences are to bee vntied, that wee maie be led from the proper effect vn­to the proper cause; and againe, conclude frō the proper cause other effectes adioined and following of the same, as when it is saide; Blessed are they which suffer persecution for the confession of Christ: heere mention is made not of the cause of blessednes, but of the effecte of faith, and of that which necessarilie doth fol­lowe faith. And therefore the sentence is thus to be opened. They are blessed which suffer persecution for the confession of Christ. Why so? Because they doe beleeue. For it is a pro­per effect of faith to confesse Christe in the time of persecution. But the faithfull bee righteous through Christe his obedience. And the righteous doe liue, and are blessed by the hope of eternall felicitie. Therefore [Page 470] they who suffer persecution for the confessi­on of Christ, are blessed.

Nowe the holie scripture vseth this man­ner of speech, for two causes. One is, that we shoulde iudge of true and liuelie faith by the naturall properties which it hath, leaste for the true faith wee embrace a fained and false faith. Another is, that we maie be stirred-vp with the promise of the rewarde of obedi­ence, the more cheerefullie to doe our dueties, and not waxe negligent in respect of the ma­nifold difficulties which happen manie times, and make manie slouthful.

But touching this point wee haue spoken more at large aboue, where wee confuted the errors of Papistes, who verie naughtilie doe confounde the causes and effectes; and manie times of the qualities, affections, and workes of ye saintes, do make the causes of iustification and saluation, whose errors bee ouerthrowen by the pretious bloode of our onelie media­tor. For in the matter of iustification al mans merites are quite contrarie vnto the merite of Christ his death.

Last of all, seeing the wicked which wel­ter in their sinnes, fighting vnder the standard of sathan, are depriued of these blessings whi­che the Church onelie is partaker-of, doubt­lesse there can bee nothing more miserable than to wander without the Church of God, [Page 471] and to bee carried from sinne vnto sinne vn­till theie fall headlong into euerlasting wret­chednesse.

THE FOVRTH part of the Psalme.

CHAP. 1.
1. The summe of the fourth part of this Psalme; 2. Whie the Church is happie.

THE fourth part of the Psalme, is a conclu­sion expressed with an admiration, where­in is declared, howe the true cause of the Churches felicitie is a firme confidence in God.

The 12. verse. O LORD OF HOSTES, BLESSED IS THE MAN WHICH TRVSTETH IN THEE.’

HItherto by qualities, affections, and sun­drie actions, hee hath shewen who are the citizens of the Church, that shal be blessed, & saued: now he laieth before our eies the cause of iustification, and of happines, namelie, a [Page 472] trust in the mercie of God, which is ratified in Christ alone. Blessed, saith he, is the man which trusteth in thee. This confidence springeth of knowledge according to the saieng of the Psalme:Psal. 9, 10. Theie that knowe thie name will truste in thee: for thou, Lorde, hast not failed them that seeke thee.

But whie is he blessed that trusteth in the Lorde? Because he is the heire of eternal life. Wherefore is he heire of eternal life? Because he is righteous. Whie righteous? For that he is in Christ; and of Christe hath that which the lawe requireth, namelie righteousnes ac­cording to this sentence,Rom. 10, 4. Christe is the ende of the lawe for righteousnes vnto euerie one that be­leeueth. And therefore confidence dependeth vpon the promise of free mercie: Free mercie dependeth vpon fatherlie kindenes. Fatherlie kindenes is grounded in the merite of the sonne: the merite of the sonne is the ransome for the sinnes of the whole world; which ran­some is by faith applied to man. For as the medicine not being applied vnto the diseased place, bringeth no profite to the sick: So the promise of fre mercie in Iesus Christ although of it selfe it be true and strong: yet doeth it not profit man vnlesse he haue faith where­by application is made.

And yet maie it not bee thought that ap­plication through faith is made in respect of [Page 473] the merite, or dignitie of the beleeuing man, but for Iesus Christ his sake, whome man through faith apprehēdeth, that by his blood he maie be purged from sinne, and endued with his righteousnes, wherebie God maie ac­cept him. For the lawe hath nothing which it maie accuse in the faithful: Because theie haue the righteousnes which the lawe exact­eth, and for which it promiseth life.

Notwithstanding after that man is iustifi­ed by faith,Effects of faith. he is to liue by the virtue of the spirite of faith. For it cannot be that à man at one time can truely beleeue, and liue after the flesh.Rom. 8, 10. Therefore saith Paul, If Christ be in you, the bodie is dead, because of sinne: but the spirite is life for righteousnes sake. Here the Apostle putteth à double effect of Christ dwelling in vs through faith, to witte mortification and life. So then wheresoeuer à liuelie and health­ful faith is, there also be the naturall proper­ties of the same. Hence it is that the scripture doth iudge of faith by the properties thereof, and that to the ende, that no man should de­ceaue himselfe with à vane shew of faith. As therefore we gather the life of the bodie by the motion thereof: So we knowe the life of faith by good workes.

But by the waie diligent heede is to be ta­ken that we do not confoūd the faith, where­bie [Page 474] Christ is apprehended, either with his properties, or with the qualities, affections, or actions of such as are iustified. For theie which so doe, ouerthrowe the doctrine of free iustifi­cation.

Moreouer the Hebrewe worde, wherebie confidence in this place is signified, is opposed against doubtfulnes; and expressed by manie wordes of Paul, among which are these: Elen­chos, which is when the minde conuicted with firme reasons touching the truth of God, doth rest it selfe: Hupostasis, wherebie the minde setteth it selfe against all obstacles or tentations; Plerophoria, by which à godlie man is carried with ful course into the hauen of blessednes; Pepoithesis, confidēce, of which ariseth boldnes. For these causes, faith is com­pared by the Prophet Isaiah to à girdle about the loines; Isai. 11, 5. by the Apostle Paul,Ephes. 6, 10. to à shield; by Hosea the Prophet,Hos. 2, 20. to à token of marriage; and by Saint Peter,1. Pet. 1, 7. to golde which is tried in the fire.

CHAP. 2.
1. Of iustification; 2. The sundrie sortes of testimonies of the holie Scripture concerning iustification.

[Page 475] FOrsomuch as Dauid in this place doth pro­nounce those blessed that trust in God; and no man can be blessed vnlesse he be righteous. (For the faithful are therefore blessed, because they be righteous; for no man euer yet was, or shalbe blessed without righteousnes, which righteousnes is the cause of life, yea and of sal­uation, and true blessednes) I thinke it good in this place to adioin à briefe discourse touching the iustification of man before God.

And although this doctrine of iustificati­on is plainlie deliuered both in the Vniuersi­ties, and Temples of this Realme: yet, forso­much as much darkenes is often mixed to this cleare light, especialie of politike fellowes, and hypocrites, whereof the one sorte appli­eng themselues to the Ciuil Courtes, do mea­sure righteousnes by the measure of reason; and the other putting on the visor of righte­ousnes, wil bee counted righteous and holie [...] and neither sort knowe rightlie to iudge be­tweene those testimonies of Scripture, which properlie belong vnto the causes of iustifica­tion, and betwene those other sentences to be applied vnto other purposes, according as cir­cumstances of places, and the analogie of faith shall require; I will propose foure sortes of testimonies of Scripture, which are woont to bee handled in this matter, wherebie it shall moste euidentlie appeare, [Page 476] what is the true sentence of the Church of God concerning the iustification of man be­fore God, and of what account the obedience of the faithful toward God is. The sorts of te­stimonies be these.

The first is about the extreme right of the lawe according to the rule of GOD his iustice.

The seconde, of the most comfortable e­quitie of the Gospel according to the promise of grace.

The third, touching the proper and ne­cessarie fruites of faith; and of the properties, qualities, and actions of such as are iusti­fied.

The fourth, of the rewarde of the good workes according to the promises of God. This difference of testimonies being knowen, it wil be an easie matter to iudge of this whole doctrine.

CHAP. 3.
1. The first sort of testimonies concerning iusti­fication, 2. That no man can fulfil the lawe, 3. Against the Pelagians, and Papistes; 4. Argumentes that none can fulfil the lawe by the power of nature.

[Page 477] THe first order of testimonies concerneth the extreme right of the lawe according to the rule of Gods iustice, which is the lawe it selfe. Nowe the extreme right of the lawe, is to bestowe life and saluation vppon none vnlesse by the sentence of the lawe hee be pro­nounced righteous; and also without respect of persons to adiudge so manie to the cursse, and wrath of God, and to eternall paines, which haue not yeelded pure, perfect, and cō ­tinual obedience to the lawe. This right of the law is conteined in the promises & threats added to the lawe of God: And the summe thereof tendeth vnto these two sayinges of Moses;Deut. 27, 29 Curssed be he that confirmeth not all the wordes of this lawe, Leuit. 18, 5. to doe them; And The man which doth them, shal liue in them, that is, as God condemneth the transgressor of the lawe: so hee doeth iustifie the fulfiller of the same.Cond. [...]nwor [...] on what; For as to bee condemned is by God through the accusement of Moses or the law, the verie conscience of man bearing witnesse againste him named to be guiltie for transgressing the lawe to bee pronounced vniust, and to bee adiudged to eternal death as accursed of God: So to be iustified,Iustificati­on what; is by God, through the qui­tance of Moses or the Lawe, the verie consci­ence of man excusing him to bee named not guiltie for fulfilling the lawe, to bee pro­nounced righteous, & to be adiudged to eter­nall [Page 478] life as blessed of GOD, and that in re­specte of the couenant betweene GOD and man.

This being set downe, I will propose à de­monstration, whereby it shall appeare that no mortall man, since the fal of our first parentes, can legalie be iustified before the tribunal seat of God, Iesus Christ onely excepted, who is both God and man, pure from all sinne, & ab­solutelie righteous according to the law. And the demonstration is this.

Whosoeuer doeth perfectlie fulfill the lawe of God, is righteous by the lawe, and heire of eternall life by the promise of God. And contrariwise, hee that doeth not fulfill the lawe, is accurssed, and subiect to the wrath of God, and to eternall paines, according to the sentence of the lawe.

But no man since the fall of our first pa­rentes, Christ onelie excepted, was euer found that coulde fulfill the lawe of God.

Therefore, no man is righteous by the sen­tence of the lawe, and heire of eternal life, by the couenant of God, but Christ alone, who beeing free from contagion of sinne, did per­fectlie fulfill the lawe: but all other besides him, are by nature subiect to the cursse, to the wrath of GOD, and to eternall tor­mentes.

The maior is proued from the extreme [Page 479] right of the lawe, that is, from the promises and threateninges of God his lawe. And this no man will denie, as apparent by the worde of God: but the minor is in controuersie. For both the Pelagians, and the Papistes doe re­iecte the minor, as vntrue: but theie builde not both vpon the same foundation.Pelagius. Pelagius, because hee tooke-awaie originall sinne, and taught how sin was sent-ouer to the posteritie of Adā not by propagation, but by immitation onely, ascribed to the power of man, yt theie could by their natural strength of them selues fulfil the lawe of God, and by the merites of good workes attaine euerlasting life. And, forsomuch as erroneouslie hee supposed that Christ was à meere man, and yet for all that yeelded perfect obedience to the lawe, hee concluded that other men likewise, if they woulde, might obserue the lawe, and thereby be iustified, and saued.

But howe weake,Against Pelagius. yea howe false the foundation of Pelagius is, the scripture in ma­nie places doeth euidentlie declare. For in that hee saith, howe sinne is sent-ouer to the posteritie of Adam by imitation onelie, it is most vntrue, as Paule in his first Chapter vnto the Romanes doth most cleerelie teach, where he handleth this verie argument, name­lie that wee are guiltie not by imitation, but by propagation. As by one man, saith hee, [Page 480] sinne entered into the worlde, and death by sinne, and so death went ouer all men: forsomuch as all men haue sinned. Rom. 5, 12. Againe, Death raigned from A­dam to Moses, euen ouer them also that sinned not after the like maner of the transgression of A­dam. 14. Are not these wordes quite contrarie to the saying of Pelagius, which imagineth that sinne is sent-ouer by imitation onely? Againe, By the offence of one, manie are dead, that is, all which were borne of Adam according to the common lawe of birth. Againe, through one which sinned, 15. death and condemnation came tho­rough one offence vnto condemnation. Againe, By the offence of one death raigned through one. 17. And again, by the offence of one the fault came on al mē to condemnation; 18. &, by one mans disobedience manie were made sinners. What can be spoken more plainelie?19. Dauid also hee saith: Behold, I was borne in iniquitie, and in sinne hath my mo­ther conceaued mee. Here Dauid speaketh not of à certaine sin,Psal. 51, 5. of his parents, as though the worke of marriage were à sinne, which is wel knowē to be the holie and lawfull ordinance of God: but of the contagion whereby we al ye sort of vs are both conceaued, and brought into the world, polluted because of the offence of our first parentes, in whome the whole na­ture of man is corrupted, and guiltie. There­fore vnto the Ephesians Paul saith, Wee were by nature the children of wrath, so wel as others.

[Page 481] The foundation therefore of Pelagius being taken awaie, the building, wherevpon he had builded, doth of it selfe come vnto the groūd. So that when Pelagius doth argue thus: We are borne without original sinne, and onelie by i­mitating sinful Adam we are made guiltie; ther­fore by the power of nature we can fulfil the lawe: the Antecedent is constantlie to be denied, as that which is contrarie both to the course of the whole scripture, & to the iudgement of al good writers.

And whereas the saide Pelagius doth af­firme that Christ was onelie man & not God too, and yet notwithstanding yeelded ful o­bedience to the lawe; and therefore others al­so maie fulfil the same, it is à friuolous argu­ment and ouerthrowne by the consent of the whole Scripture.Christ not a meere man, as the Pela­gians did teach. For the whole Scripture doth commend Christ God and man to vs; saith he is the onelie sauiour; testifieth that he is the beholder of heartes; and acknow­ledgeth him to be present in all places.

Now ye Papists which also denie the minor of our argument, builde vpon another foun­dation, to wit vpon à false definition of God his lawe. For with the Pharisees theie thinke that the lawe doth onelie restraine the hande, as theie saie, and requireth onelie outward ci­uil workes, which when men doe, theie saie how theie are iust before God, and doe merit [Page 482] by their obedience eternal life, original sinne being abolished through the death of Christ. And therefore theie define the iustification of the vngodlie, to be à remissiō of sinnes; and à perfection of good works.

But how vane and friuolous this toieng of the Papistes, is, first the Law it selfe, which brideleth concupiscence, doth shewe. Se­condlie, Paul compareth the Lawe of nature & of men together, as things cleane contrarie. We know, Rom 7, 14. saith he, that the law is spiritual, but I am carnal, soulde vnder sinne. By which sai­eng he doth signifie, that the carnal man, as carnall, can not yeelde spirituall obedience to the Lawe. He calleth him carnal, which in another place he calleth à natural man, who hath not the spirite, Iude verse. 19. as Iude doth interpret the same, that is, which is not borne anewe by the holie Ghost. Thirdlie the Law it selfe re­quireth à perfect, pure, and constant loue both of GOD, and our neighbour: which loue vndoubtedlie is not an external and outward worke, but an inwarde and spiritual, exa­cting the puritie of affections, which are not to be founde in men that are not regene­rated. Last of al, the interpretation of Christ, which he himselfe opposeth against the Pharisees, doth sufficientlie confute this dreame of the Papistes.

Moreouer hauing thus laide open the er­rors [Page 483] of Pelagius and of the Papistes, I wil gather foure demonstrations out of Paul, wherewith I wil confirme the minor of our demonstration, which is, that no mortal man can yeelde no perfect obedience to the lawe of God.

The first is taken from the common cor­ruption of mans nature. For al men from their birth are vncleane and guiltie: nowe seeing from an vnpure and stinking foun­taine, there cannot chuse, but issue foule and filthie water, it cannot be, that an vncleane man, can yeelde pure and cleane obedience. For so saith Salomon,Eccle. 7. 22. Surelie there is no man iust in the earth, that doth good and sinneth not. And Iob,Iob. 14, 4. Who can bring à cleane thing out of filthinesse? there is not one. For al the sorte of vs do proceede from à sinneful masse. For the effecte cannot be better than the cause. So that this argumēt is strong: Theie which are vncleane, cannot yeelde pure obedience: Al men by nature are vncleane, Christ alone excepted, who was exempted from the cōmon law of such as are borne: Therfore none can yeelde pure obedience to the lawe of God.

The second is taken from the general ex­perience,The second argument. or punishment of guiltines in al mē. Whosoeuer be subiect to death, which is the punishment for violating Gods law, theie are breakers of God his Lawe; otherwise God [Page 484] should be an vniust iudge for punishing the innocent: but now Paul confesseth, that the iudgement of God is according to trueth. Rom. 2, 2. But al men are subiect to death, as the to punishmēt for violating Gods lawe, which thing the mi­serable experience of al men from time to time, doth testifie. Therefore al men are brea­kers of God his lawe. How then can theie be righteous by the lawe?

The thirde is taken from the testimonies of Scripture, The 3. Ar­gument. which are the verie voice of God both in the Psalmes, in Moses, the Prophets, Euangelistes, and writinges of the Apostles. In Moses it is written, Gene. 6. 5. The Lorde sawe that the wickednesse of man was greate in the earth, and al the imaginations of the thoughtes of his heart were onelie euil continualie. Beholde the fountaine of man his righteousnes. Iob saith, I know verilie that it is so:Iob. 9. 2. for howe should man compared vnto God,3. be iustified? If he woulde dispute with him, he could not answeare him one thing of à thousand.20. The same Iob saith againe, If I would iustifie my selfe, mine owne mouth shal condemne me.Psal. 14. 1. And in à certaine Psalme, Theie haue corrupted and done an abhominable worke, there is none that doth good.2. The Lorde looked downe from heauen vpon the children of men, to see if there were anie that woulde vnderstand, and seeke God.3. Al are gone out of the waie, theie are al corrupt: there is none that doth good, no not [Page 485] one.Psal. 19. 12. Againe, Who can vnderstand his faultes? And againe, Psal. 130. 3 If thou, ô Lorde, straitlie markest i­niquities, ô Lord, who shal stand? Therfore Dauid praieth, Psal. 143. 2 on this wise: Enter not into iudgement with thie seruant: for in thie iudgement shal none that liueth be iustified.Prou. 20. 9 Salomon also Pro. 20. hath these wordes, Who can sate, I haue made mine heart cleane, I am cleane frō my sin? And ye Prophet Isai: Esai, 64, 6. We haue al bin as an vncleane thing & al our righteousnes is as filthie cloutes, & we al do fade like à leafe, & our iniquities like the winde haue taken vs awaie. The preaching of repen­tance in the Gospel, is à witnesse of the guilt of al mankind. Ioh. 9. 3. And the Lord saith, That which is borne of the flesh, is flesh. From ye Epistles of ye Apostles I wil alleage onlie on testimonie out of Paul, who vnto the Romanes writeth after this wise, Rom. 3. 9. 10. We haue alredie proued, saith he, that al, both Iewes and Gentiles are vnder sinne. As it is written,11. 12. 13. there is none righteous, no not one. There is none that vnderstandeth, there is none that seeketh God. Theie haue al gone out of the waie; theie haue beene made altogether vnprofi­table; there is none that doth good, no not one. Their throte is an open sepulchre; theie haue v­sed their tongues to deceite; the poison of aspes is vnder their lippes.14, 15. 16, 17. Whose mouth is ful of cursing and bitternes▪ their feete are swifte to shed bloud. Destruction and calamitie are in their waies; and the waie of peace theie haue not knowne. The [Page 486] feare of God is not before their eies. Of these & such like testimonies our proposition is pro­ued, which is, that no man perfectlie can ful­fil the lawe of God.

The fourth is taken from the necessitie,The fourth argument. and ende of the mediator giuen betwene God and men. For if man by his natural strength could haue fulfilled the lawe of God, he had not needed à mediator. For he had beene righteous by the workes of the lawe; and had by the couenant of GOD obteined eternal life.Leuit. 18, 5. For it is the couenant of God: If à man doe my commaundementes, he shal liue in them. But nowe seeing man hath neede of à mediator and reconciler, doubtlesse he brea­keth the lawe, and is guiltie, vnrighteous, and accursed. Therefore the scripture, which conteineth either the promise, or the exhi­bition of ye Messiah, doth accuse mankinde of sinne, and sendeth vnto the mediator, paci­fier, and intercessor. Hence Paul fetcheth an argumēt in his second chapter vnto the Gala­thians when,Gal 2, 21. he saith, If righteousnesse be by the Lawe, then Christ died without à cause: that is, the Sonne of God in mans nature, in vaine did humble himselfe, euen vnto the death of the crosse, if man by the lawe maie be iusti­fied, whereas the Sonne of God tooke the nature of man vpon him, that he might abo­lishe sinne, bring euerlasting righteousnesse, [Page 487] and therein cause vs to be adopted into the sonnes of God. Let the Papistes take the lawe in this place for what part it pleaseth them: yet the same conclusion must follow. For whether righteousnesse be by the lawe moral, or by the iudicial, or by the ceremonial, or by altogether, the same absurditie doth fol­low, namelie, that Christ died without à cause. If he died in vaine, he was also borne in vaine, & al his benefitie are in vaine. By these foure in­uincible argumentes, the iudgement of the Church, which thinketh together with the whole Scripture, that no man can be iustified by the workes of the lawe, forsomuch as man yeeldeth not pure, perfect, & continual obe­dience therevnto, is confirmed.

Nowe,Touching the vse of the lawe. this being so, to wit, that no man can obserue perfectlie the comaundementes of God; nor by the works of the lawe be iusti­fied before God, it maie be demaunded, what maie be the vse of the law. For we must of ne­cessitie acknowledge that the lawe is not gi­uen-out in vaine. Vnto this question we must make this answere: Although by the workes of the lawe no man is iustified before God, because no man is able to satisfie the same: yet is there à diuers vse of the same, which is to be considered according to the condition of the states of men. I doe o­mitte the external and political vse, which [Page 488] is to gouerne outward manners by discipline agreeing with the law: because we now are in hande with that vse of the law which concer­neth the conscience of man before the iudge­mēt seate of God. Therfore before iustificatiō & regeneratiō,Vse of the Lawe in the conscience. this is the vse of the law in the cōscience of man, namely to teach, to accuse, & to condemne. It teacheth both what is to be done, and what is to be auoided of him, that seketh life by the lawe: It accuseth the trans­gressor; it pronounceth him guiltie, and con­demneth; and that to this ende, that the sin­ner hauing confessed his wickednes, and con­sidered both the wrath of God, and his owne miserie, may sue for fauor, which thing he is not able to attaine of the law, by the strength of nature. Whereby the law is to the wounded conscience an occasion of seeking Christ the Physition. And hereof is the law called A Schoolemaster vnto Christ. Gal. 3. 24. Hitherto belongeth that of Paule to the Galathians.22. The scripture hath concluded al vnder sinne, that the promise by the faith of Iesus Christ, should be giuen to them that beleeue. This selfe same thing doeth the Lord teach in a parable of the debter, where a certaine king doth of his seruaunt,Matt. 8, 23. 24. &c. whom he knew was not able to paie his debt, demaunde ten thousand talents due to him by the lawe: which thing he did to the ende that the ser­uant confessing his pouertie, might flie to the [Page 489] mercie of his Lord, therby to obtaine a gene­ral discharge of the whole debt. By this parable the vse of God his law in the consci­ences of men before free forgiuenes of the whole debt and iustification, is depainted. For as this debtor payeth nothing of his debt, but is freely forgiuē: so the law in the act of iusti­ficatiō is vtterlie idle, as yt which is neither the cause, nor a parte of our righteousnes as it is wrought of vs.The vse of the Law af­ter mans iustification. But after that man is iustified, the spiritual vse of ye law is, to prescribe those things which belong vnto a spiritual man, or a rule of spiritual seruing of God. And so the promises of the law be fulfilled in the faithful through Christ.

These things beeing thus learned,A confutati­on of their argumentes which think that by the workes of the Law mē are iustified. it is no hard thing to refel the arguments of them, who contēd that by the wotkes of the law men are iustified before God. Therfore when out of Moses they do obiect: He that doth the com­mandements shal liue in them: Therfore by the workes of the law man is iustified: It is to be answered that the argument is vntrue.Leuit. 18. 5. For by the law it must be considered what the law in al respects, or the iustice of God doth require, not what mā is able to do; that we may flie vn­to ye mercie of God, confessing our weakenes, especialie seeing it is apparent, that no man is able perfectlie to obserue the law.

Yet more forceablie they do vrge, and they [Page 490] obiect vnto vs the saying of our Lord, If thou wilt enter into life, Matt. 19. 17 keepe the commaundementes. Hereof theie conclude à condition of keeping the commaundementes of God, and that by keeping thē men are are iustified, yea & saued. But what the Lord ment by those words, the parable which euen now we mencioned doth teach. For as ye King there exacteth of his deb­ter ten thousand talents, and frankelie forgaue the whole det to him which had nothing to paie, but flied vnto the mercie of his cre­ditor: So the the Lorde vnto the proude hy­pocrite doth saie: If thou wilt enter into life, keepe the commaundements: to the ende that the hypocrite discending into himselfe, might confesse his filthinesse, and pouertie, and so craue pardon;Luk 7, 48. which had he done, he had heard with the sinful woman, Thee sinnes are forgiuen thee. We must therfore acknowledg how the obseruation of God his cōmaundements is pronounced both by Moses & Christ himselfe to be the right & most readie waie vnto life: but the faulte is in our selues, whie by that waie, though it be verie direct, we enter not into life. For the condition cannot be perfourmed of vs, as aboue it hath beene showen. So that by the commaundementes the effect is not con­cluded, because the condition is not obser­ued, which is, If thou doe the Lawe, but the defect of al men rather, that acknowledging [Page 491] our imperfectiō, we maie flie vnto the mercie of God. And this is the doctrine of Paul con­cerning the vse of the lawe before conuersion: By the lawe saith he,Rom. 3, 20▪ commeth the knowledge of sinne. Yet this knowledge is not to the ende that we shoulde die in our sinnes: but that we shoulde seeke Christ, as Paul saith in another place,Rom. 11. 32. He hath shut-vp al in vnbeleefe, that he might haue mercie on al. Gala 3, 22. Againe, The scripture hath concluded al vnder sinne, that the promise by the faith of Iesus Christ, should be giuen to thē that beleeue. And therefore the obseruation of the lawe is required to iustification, that we maie confesse howe that we haue, neither in our selues, nor of our selues, no righteousnesse at al: and that through faith we shoulde flie together vnto Christe,Rom. 10, 4. Who is in the ende of the lawe for righteousnesse to euerie one that be­leeueth; whereof we are nowe to speake.

CHAP. 4.
1. The second order of testimonies; 2. That works and faith together doe not iustifie; 3. True iusti­fication what; 4. The things required in à iustified man; 5. The causes of mans iustification.

THe second sorte of testimonies of the holie scripture, cōcerning ye iustificatiō of mā be­fore God, is euangelical, wherin ye most cōforequitie, [Page 492] according to the promise of grace, is proposed to the penitent sinners: namelie, that Christ came into the worlde to saue sin­ners,Matt. 9. 13. as the Lord himselfe doth saie: I am come to cal sinners vnto repentance, that is, vnto con­uersion, and that according to the promises made vnto the fathers, and commended vn­to the Church of God by wonderful mira­cles.

But before I declare the iudgement of the true Church touching this matter, I wil re­fel the opinion of them, who with the Pha­risees compounde Christian righteousnesse both of workes and faith, as it were of causes and partes, least by their preiudice, our cause be hindered. For doubtlesse it pleaseth po­litical fellowes and ignorant folkes marue­louslie, when the lawe and the Gospel, or faith and workes in the iustification of man before God are coupled-together. For thus theie saie, we are debters of the lawe, we grant à great defecte in vs, which Christ perfour­meth. Therefore let vs doe what we can, & beg that which is behinde of Christ. And so theie ascribe à parte of righteousnesse to their owne workes, and merites; and à parte to Christ his merites: So, that some doe par­ticipate more, and some lesse of Christ his merites, according as theie doe abounde, or want. Theie who thus doe thinke, doubtlesse [Page 493] haue no parte of Christ his fauour, as most sacrilegious, who arrogantlie doe take à part of Christ his office, which is to saie, to them­selues against whom both the whole Scrip­ture, and the consent of the true Church is opposed.

But in this place let vs onelie set Paul the Apostle, and doctor of the Gentiles against them, who in manie places disputeth to the ouerthrowing of this Pharisaical opinion. As Romaines,Rom. 3. 21. 3. The righteousnesse of God is made manifest without the Law, Rom. 4, 13. Rom. 4. The promise that he should be the heire of the worlde, was not giuē to Abraham, or to his seede through the Lawe, but through the righteousnesse of faith. For if theie, saith he, which are of the Lawe, be heires, 14. faith is made voide, and the promise is made of none effect. In which wordes the A­postle most plainelie doth take iustification from the Lawe, yea, and from al workes too; and ascribeth the same to faith alone, teaching that the promise is voide, and faith à vaine fiction, if before God we are iustified by a­nie works, that is, if the workes of the Lawe be either causes, or partes of our iustification before God.Rom. 10, 3. Rom. 10. Theie being ignorant of the righteousnesse of God, and going about to sta­blish their owne righteousnesse, haue not submitted themselues to the righteousnesse of God. And in ye chapter immediat elie insuing, he opposeth [Page 494] grace & works in the matter of saluation, so yt they cannot stād together, as causes or parts of righteousnes or saluation.Rom. 11, 6. If it be of grace (saith he) it is no more of works; or els were grace no more grace: but if it be of workes, it is no more of grace; or else worke were no worke. For, as Augustine saith, it is grace no way, which is not free grace euery way. Ephe. 2, 8. 9. Hitherto belongeth that of Paule in an other place, By grace are ye saued through faith, & that not of your selues; it is the gift of god, not of workes, least any man should boast himselfe. Could any thing be spokē more plainly? Here Paul saith not as ye Papists do of faith and works; but he excludeth workes, that grace may be grace; that saluation may be à gifte; and that no man should glorie in the sight of God, as brin­ging any merit, which should moue god to iu­stifie him. This boasting is excluded also by the Apostle in another place, where he saith, where is then the reioicing? Rom. 3, 27. 28. it is excluded. By what Lawe? of workes? Naie, but by the Lawe of faith. Therfore we cōclude that à man is iustified by faith without the workes of the Lawe.

Hereby I suppose it is more cleere than the daie, that theie do erre, which compound Christian righteousnes of faith and workes to­gether, as it were of causes & partes. Moreouer theie, who seke for licentiousnes of life from ye doctrine of free iustification, shalbe answered, God willing, in ye third sort of testimonies.Or in the chapter im­mediatlie following.

[Page 495] Now then,True iustifi­catiō what, hauing laid open the errors tou­ching the equitie of the Gospell, I will plainly deliuer, and shew which is the true waie to be iustified according to the word of God, yt is, ye gospel. To be iustified therfore according to ye Gospel, is, for ye beleeuing mā, who is absolued frō al guilt of sinne, & redeemed frō the curse of the law, by God to be pronounced free for the ransome sake paide by the mediator; to be made righteous by the righteousnes of the me­diator imputed to him; and finaly, to be adiud­ged to eternal life, as a beleeued sonne in the beloued, freelie for the mediator Christ his sake.

So then,3. Thinges required in iustification. for him that would be righteous before God, three things are necessarie. One is, that beeing absolued from sinne, & redeemed from the cursse of the law, he be a free man; an other is, that he haue righteousnes, wherby he may in deede be, and be thought righteous; the thirde, that beeing made righteous, he be ad­opted for a sonne, and be liked and loued of God, as a beloued in the beloued. These bles­sings no man can giue but God onely; and therfore Christian righteousnesse is sometime called The righteousnesse of GOD, because it is God that iustifieth; sometime The righteous­nesse of Christ, for that his obedience, beeing imputed to vs, is made our righteousnesse; and sometime The righteousnesse of Faith, [Page 496] forsomuch as it is free, as that which through faith is apprehended, while we beleue the gos­pell.Luk. 24, 47. Therfore the Lord saith, Repentance and remission of sinnes must be preached in my name a­mong al nations. Remission of sinnes what; The remission of sinnes is the verie absolutiō from guiltines, & the redemp­tion from the cursse of libertie. With this re­missiō two other things are cōioined, namelie righteousnes & adoptiō or free acceptatiō vn­to life eternal. Hetherto also belong the words of the Angel vnto the Virgin:Matt▪ 1, 21. Thou shalt cal his name Iesus: for he shal saue his people from their sinnes. Here by the word of saluation, al the be­nefites of the mediator be vnderstood. But of these things we wil entreate particularlie, the more distinctlie and cleerelie to vnderstād these benefites which we obteine by Christ.

First therfore we attaine remission of sinnes, as Paul saith, by the bloud of Christ. For the obedience of Christ vpon the crosse, is ye price whereby the iustice of God is satisfied for the sinnes of al those which through faith do con­uert. For so saith Paul: whom (meaning Christ) God hath set to be a reconciliation through faith in his blood. Rom. 3, 23. So that ye merit of Christ his bloud is the cleāsing of sinnes, which bloud is there­fore a sufficient ransome, because it is the bloud of the sonne of God. Therfore in the Acts it is saide:Act. 20, 28. that God hath purchased the Church with his owne bloud.

[Page 497] And that he which hath remission of sinnes, that is, which is absolued from the guiltines of sinne, is also redeemed from the cursse of the lawe, and partaker of the libertie of God his children,Gala. 13, 13 these sentences do approue. Christ hath redeemed vs from the cursse of the law, when he was made a cursse for vs. Ioh. 8, 34. 36 Againe, Whosoeuer committeth sinne, is the seruant of sinne. If the sonne therefore shal make you free, ye shalbe free in deede. So then whosoeuer do ascribe euen the least merite of cleansing sinnes to any other thing beside the blood of Christ, they do pro­phane Christ his blood, and extenuat the me­rit of the Lordes death: of which merit we are then made partakers, when we beleeue in Iesus Christ.Rom. 3, 25. Therefore Paul doth say, through faith in his blood, that is, when a man knowing the promise of grace, doth verilie beleeue that his sinnes are forgiuen him for the blood sake of Christ, he is truelie partaker of the merit of the Lord his death, through which he is absolued from sinne; redeemed from the condemnation of the law; and set free from the bondage of sinne and Satan.

With the remission of sinnes righteousnes is ioyned, wherby the beleeuer is iustified, that is, becommeth in verie deede, and is iudged righteous before God. And this righteousnes is the second benefit of Christ, in our iustifica­tion. Which righteousnes is nothing else, than [Page 598] à perfect fulfilling of the lawe,True righ­teousnesse what. done indeede by Christe, but ascribed or imputed to vs that beleeue.Rom. 10, 4. For so saith Paul, Christe is the ende of the lawe for righteousnes vnto eue­rie one that beleeueth, that is, so manie as be­leeue, haue that which the Lawe requi­reth, namelie righteousnes, but not done of them, but imputed to them. For so saith Paul; To him that worketh not, but beleeueth in him that iustifieth the vngodlie, Rom. 4, 5. his faith is counted for righteousnes. Now that this righte­ousnes that is imputed to vs, is Christ his obe­dience, the comparisō which Paul doth make, witnesseth.Rom. 5, 19. As by one mans disobedience, saith he, manie were made sinners: So by the obedience of one, shal manie also be made righteous, meaning so manie as beleue.2. Cor. 5, 21. And in another place, He hath made him to be sinne for vs which knewe no sinne, that we should be made the righteousnes of God in him, that is, Christ was made for vs sinne, which is à sinner through the imputa­tion of the guiltinesse of al our sinnes to him, yt we might be made righteous with God, and that by the righteousnes, not sticking within vs, but which, being in Christ, is imputed of God to vs through faith. Then we are so the righteousnes of God in him, as he is sinne in vs, to wit through imputation. And this is it which Augustine doth saie: Our sinnes, he made his owne sins, that he might make his righte­ousnes [Page 499] to be ours. Herevnto both Moses, the Psalmes & Prophets, do agree. Moses he wri­teth:Gene. 3. 15. The seede of the woman shal bruse the Ser­pents head. Gene. 22▪ Again, In thy seede (which is Christ) shal all the nations of the earth be blessed. This blessing cannot be without ye remission of sins, righteousnes, and allowance of God. If there­fore blessing be through Christ, deliuerance also frō the cursse is through him; & through the remission of sinnes (we atteine) imputation of righteousnes and God his fauor. And in the Psalme it is,Psal. 22, 31 They shal declare his righteousnes to à people, that is, the Church shal preach, not mans righteousnes by workes or ceremonies, but the righteousnes of Christ which shalbe imputed for righteousnes to so manie as beleeue▪ Rom. 10, 4. The Prophet Isaiah saith,Isai. 53, 11. By his knowledge shal my righteous seruant iustifie manie: for he shal beare their iniquities. This testimonie is verie notable, for it teacheth how sinnes be washed awaie through ye sacrifice of Christ; it teacheth yt Christ ye righteous by his righteousnes doth make others righteous; & it teacheth also yt ap­plicatiō is made through ye knowledge of the same Christ, yt is, through an effectual know­ledg of Christ,True know­ledge of Christ, what. And yt is effectual knowledge, whē to the knowledg of ye minde, ye beleefe of the heart is ioined. Also by yt Prophet Ieremi­ah,Iere. 23, 6. it is writtē, This is the name wherby theie shal cal him, the lord our righteousnes. Here ye prophet [Page 500] cōmendeth Christ his diuinitie, and also pro­nounceth howe we are iustified through his righteousnes. Touching the application, the same Prophet speaketh on this wise: Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, Iere. 17, 7. and whose hope the Lord is. Now he trusteth in the Lord, who beleeueth, that being iustified by his righteousnesse, he pleaseth God. For the obedience of Christ, God and man, is the most absolute perfourmance of the lawe; the which sufficeth al, because it is the righteous­nes of man who is God. This the Prophet declareth when he saith, The Lord is our righ­teousnesse. So that from our heartes we must beleeue, how the righteousnesse, wherebie we are iust before God, is not anie qualitie, or action in our selues, but the obedience of Christ imputed to the faithful. So doth Paul most expreslie distinguish betweene ye righ­teousnesse of man, and of Christ, when he saith:Phil. 3, 8. I doe iudge al thinges but doung, that I might winne Christ, and might be founde in him not hauing mine own righteousnes which is of the lawe, 9. but that which is through the faith of Christ, euē the righteousnes which is of God through faith.

Nowe, if we haue remission of sinnes, and righteousnesse through faith, to wit per­fecte righteousnesse, which is of Christe Ie­su, doubtlesse we are no more vnder the dam­nable sentence of the lawe,Deut. 27, 26 which is, Cur­sed [Page 501] is he that confirmeth not al the workes of the lawe, Gala. 3, 10. to doe them. And this meaneth Paul where he saith,Rom. 6, 14. We are vnder the lawe (which con­demneth) but vnder grace (which iustifieth.) Whie so?Rom. 5, 18. For that as through the offence of one (to wit Adam,) the fault came on al men to condemnation: so by the iustifieng of one (namelie Christ) Grace abounded towarde al men to the iustification of life. That is, As the sinne of A­dam was the cause of condemnation vnto e­ternal death: So the righteousnes of Christ is the cause of iustification vnto eternal life.Rom. 8, 1. Now then, as Paul saith, there is no condemnation to them that are in Christ Iesu. 2. For theie are free frō the lawe of sin & of death, through Christ the deliuerer.

The third thing which we saide was requi­red, for to make a man righteous before God, is, that being adorned with Christ his righte­ousnes, he be adopted for the sonne of God, and accepted vnto eternal life. For, as by faith hee obteineth remission of sinnes, and righ­teousnes: so likewise by the same faith, we ob­teine the right of adoptiō, and the dignitie of Gods children,Ioh. 1, 12. according to that of Iohn, He gaue power to be the sonnes of God, euen to them that beleeue in his name, That is, he conferred this heauenlie honor vpon the faithful that theie both be, and be counted the sonnes of God.Rom. 8, 15. And Paul: ye haue not receiued the spirite [Page 502] of bondage to feare againe: but ye haue receiued the spirite of adoption, wherbie we crie, Abba, Father. 16. The same spirite beareth witnes with our spirit, 17. that we are the children of God. If we be children, we are also heires, euen the heires of God, Adoption. and heires annexed with Christ. More­ouer, this our adoption is two māner of waies to be considered, to wit, as it is in the life be­gun through faith; and as it shalbe consuma­ted whē the bodies shal rise againe. Both these adoptions haue their glorie. For by the adop­tion begū we haue peace with God, which is, not onelie the reconcilement of vs with God; but also à quiet conscience in Iesu Christ; we haue accesse vnto god, through our Lord Iesus Christ; & we haue too à firme trust, that God hath à care of vs,Rom. 8, 28. as his childrē, so that al thinges worke-together for the best to vs, yea such things as doe seeme most bitter. Wherof it is, that the saintes, euen in the crosse, wherebie theie are made like the onelie begotten Sonne of God, doe reioice; according to the saying of Paul: We doe reioice in tribulations, Rom. 5, 3. 4. 5. knowing that tribu­lation bringeth foorth patience; and patience, ex­perience; & experience, hope; and hope maketh not ashamed, because God loueth vs.

Of the adoption hereafter to be consum­mated Paul speaketh on this wise:Rom. 8, 23. Euen we doe sigh in our selues waiting for the adoption, e­uen the redemption of our bodies. This redemp­tiō [Page 503] of the bodie, in the same chapter somwhat afore, the Apostle defineth to be the glorious li­bertie of the sonnes of God, 21 that is, the ful glorie, wherin the childrē of God, being freed frō al euil, shal euerlastinglie and blessedlie inioie the most comfortable sight of God. Of this longing for glorie the Apostle speaketh when he saith:Rom. 5, 2. We reioice vnder the hope of the glorie of God. Together with this adoption, the which at the last iudgement shalbe perfected, formal righteousnes, wherebie we shalbe like vnto God for euermore, is ioined. Which righteousnes the Apostle saith we doe waite for,Gal. 5, 5. when he saith: We through the spirit waite for the hope of righteousnes through faith. And what māner of righteousnes that shalbe, Iohn declareth in these wordes;1. Ioh. 3, 2. We knowe that when he shal appeare, we shalbe like him, euen holie, righteous, chast, and blessed for euer and euer.

Out of the things which hitherto we haue spoken, touching the iustification of man by the method of composition, this definition maie be framed.Iustification what. Man his iustification before God is an absoluing of the beleeuing man from sinne; an imputation of Christ his righ­teousnes; and à receiuing of him vnto eternal life freelie for Christ his sake.

Nowe the more fullie to open this our iu­stification,Causes of mans iusti­fication. let vs in order, yet verie brief­lie, beholde the causes. The cause therefore [Page 504] preparing is ye preaching of the gospel, which maketh vs to acknowledge and to feele our infirmitie, & iust damnation. The which sense Paul doth terme the spirit of feare, because at the preaching of the law it is raised vp in men through the holie spirite.Rom. 8, 15.

When Peter in the Acts vpon the day of Pen­tecost, had accused his countreimen the Iewes, for violating both tables of the Lord, they conceiued in their minde the spirit of feare, that is, a wonderful dolor and griefe, or pricking in their consciences for their sinnes. Therfore af­terward in their perplexitie, doubtfulnes, and despairing as it were,Act. 2, 38. he biddeth thē to amende their liues, and be baptized euery one of them in the name of Iesus Christ, which was in deede a preaching of the gospel. This conuersion is made through faith, which men do conceaue through the holie ghost, when they hearken vnto the gospel. By this faith Christ wholy, who of God is made vnto vs wisedome and righte­ousnes, 1. Cor. 1, 30. 31. and sanctification, and redemption, is con­ceaued, that he that reioyceth, doe reioyce in the Lord, and praise him euerlastingly. And this is that knowledge of saluation, hid from the wise and men of vnderstanding of this worlde, but reuealed to the Church, through the worde of the gospel.

CHAP. 5.
1 The thirde sorte of testimonies; 2 How good workes do iustifie; 3. Wherein we and the Papists do differ about good works.

ALthough the fruite of the righteousnes of faith, is neuer to be separated from faith: yet with al diligence is it to be distinguished from our iustification. For the proper benefit of Christ, which we obteine by faith alone, is one thing; and our due obedience, which, as the fruite out of the tree springeth from faith, through which we be regenerate, & borne the the sonnes of God, is another. Wherof it is that by the natural properties that it hath, we iudge of a liuely faith; euen as by the frute we iudge of the tree. Hence it is, that in this order of testimonies, the worde to iustifie, hath an o­ther sense, than in the afore mentioned orders it had.Iustification what. For in this place to iustifie, signifieth to shew and declare a man to be righteous. As in the Epistle of Iames man is saide to be iustified by workes, Iam. 2, 24. because through workes he sheweth and declareth himselfe to be righteous. And in the scripturs oftentimes theie are pronoun­ced blessed, which giue themselues to good workes: not that good workes be causes, or do merit happinesse; but for that they are true to­kens [Page 506] of their cause, which is faith, or the spirit of faith,Rom. 8, 14. For so many as are led by the spirit of God, they are the sonnes of God. And hence it is that the Lord in the gospel after Matthew saith, Blessed are the meeke; Matt. 5, 5. 7. 9. 10. blessed are the merciful; blessed are the peacemakers; blessed are the patient. For these virtues, if they be true, and not hy­pocritical showes of virtue, do proceede from faith, whereby righteousnesse is laid holde on; and they be vndoubted markes of the children of God, declaring the adoption. Therfore this rule is to be helde in memorie: when diuers ef­fectes doe depende alike of one and the same cause, the consequent doth holde from one ef­fect vnto the other, because of their common dependance. In Luke it is written, of the sin­ful womā,Luk. 7, 47. how many sinnes were forgiuen her: for she loued much. Now, because both, I meane re­mission of sinnes, and loue, depend of faith, as of a proper cause, the argument is good from loue vnto the remission of sinne, because of their common dependance. Sophists, who thinke that Christ descended from the cause vnto the effect, and made loue the cause of re­mission of sinnes, do peruert the meaning of Christ: as by the parable which the Lorde bringeth-forth before them, it is manifest. There was a certaine lender, Luk. 7, 41. saith he, which had twoo debtors: the one ought fiue hundred pence, [Page 507] and the other fiftie: 42. when they bad nothing to pay, he forgaue them both. Which of them therefore, tel me, 43. wil loue him most? Simon answered, and saide, I suppose that he, to whom be forgaue most. Afterwarde, 50. he saide to the woman, Thy faith hath saued thee, goe in peace. Doth not the Lord here plainly declare, that remission of sinnes doth go before loue, and both, to wit, remis­sion and loue to depende of faith, as of their verie cause? For many times effectes, whereof some doe follow others, which notwithstan­ding shoulde be referred vnto their proper cause, to auoyde the confusion of causes and effects, be ascribed to one and the same cause. Hitherto belongeth the rule of Augustine, When, saith he, we do finde such places in the Scriptures as do seeme to attribute righteousnesse to workes, special regarde must be had vnto the foundation from which they do spring. And when they proceede from faith, they are to be as­cribed vnto the roote. For example, Blessed is he that iudgeth wisely of the poore; the Lorde shal deliuer him in the time of trouble. Here mercie toward the needie and poore is not set for a cause of blessednesse. For mer­cie is a particular worke whereby the law of God is not satisfied. But such manner of speech Dauid vseth, because the effecte is a most certaine argument of the cause it hath. [Page 508] So that the man which hath mercie on the poore is blessed, because he beleeueth. Now then through faith he pleaseth, the worke also pleaseth; not for the perfectnes thereof, but for that God accepteth it; because the person is not vnder the lawe, but vnder grace.

And that it is necessarie, that the workes, which God accepteth of, must proceede from faith,Rom 14, 23 it is manifest. For whatsoeuer is not of faith, Heb. 11, 6. is sinne. And, without faith, it is impossible to please God. The Lorde himselfe doth saie, Without me ye can doe nothing. Ioh. 15, 5. 4 As the branch cannot beare fruite of it selfe, except it abide in the vine: No more can man doe anie thing, vnlesse he abide in Christ through faith. For before we be regenerate, we are euil trees, Which cannot but bring foorth euill fruite; Matt. 7, 18. wee are the children of wrath, Eeph. 2, 3. and dead in sinne; we are flesh,Rom. 8, 7. Whose wisedome is enmitie against God; we are natural mē,1. Cor, 2, 14 which perceiue not the things of the spirit of God. And therefore whatsoe­uer God promiseth to such as do good works, that must not be promised indifferentlie to al: but onelie to such as obeie through faith. For, seeing the iust doe please by faith, theie doe necessarilie bring foorth the fruites of righte­ousnesse of faith, namelie good workes, which no more can be separated from the righteous­nes of faith, than the natural propertie from the subiect. Wherefore as the argument is [Page 509] alwaie good from the subsistence of anie sub­iect, vnto the natural propertie of the same; and contrariwise, the propertie being set, the subiect of necessitie must be seene: so faith which iustifieth man, being set, good workes, which are ye properties of ye spirit of faith, are necessarilie set. And againe, good works being set, faith, frō which theie do spring, must needs be set: So whersoeuer faith is not, good workes are not, & wher good works be not, ther is not faith, the cause of good works. Therfore saith Paul,1. Tim. 1, 18. 19. Fight à good sight, hauing faith and à good conscience, which some haue put awaie, and as con­cerning faith, haue made shipwracke. So often then as promises doe seeme to be annexed to good workes, we are to make recourse vnto the roote, and ground, namelie faith. For, as there be two beginnings of thinges, one is that theie be; the other that they be known: so faith, as the beginning of being, worketh so, that thou art righteous; and good workes, as the beginning of knowledge, bring it to passe that thou art knowne to be righteous. Hence the Lorde at the last daie wil propose the be­ginning of knowledge to the righteousnesse of faith which shalbe apparent in the sight of al creatures.Mat. 25, 34 35▪ For thus he wil saie: Come ye blessed of my father, inherit ye the kingdome prepared for you from the foundations of the world. For I was an hungred, and ye gaue me meat; I thirsted, and [Page 510] ye gaue me drinke; I was à stranger, and ye lod­ged me. 36. I was naked, and ye cloathed me; I was sick, and ye visited me; I was in prison, and ye came vnto me. Here the Lorde wil not haue the workes of mercie toward his members, to be merites of the heauenlie kingdome; but by certaine tokens he declareth who are the sonnes of God, vpon whom the kingdome of God freelie for Christ his sake without a­nie merites of man, shalbe bestowed. For so saith Paul,Rom. 6, 23. The gift of God is eternal life, through Iesus Christ our Lord.

And although by that which hither­to hath beene spoken, it is none harde thing to iudge howe our doctrine concerning good workes differeth from the papistical ima­ginations: Yet that the more distinctlie and particularlie this difference maie be seene, I wil adde somewhat more here-vnto, and that for two causes: the firste, to shewe the vanitie of those men, who hearing that both we, and the Papistes doe require good woorkes, doe thinke that we striue not a­bout matters of importance, but onelie a­bout words, and that of pride onelie to gaine-saie. Wherebie theie doe sufficientlie be­wraie themselues to know nothing touching this controuersie of so great importance, vp­on which al our saluation doth depend. Se­condlie, that godlie auditors maie be rightlie [Page 511] instructed in this matter, and necessarie do­ctrine; & maie haue alwaie in à readines wher­with to answer such as indeuour to ouerthrow our religion, and slaunder the same without reason, either of meere malice, or of grosse ignorance.

The difference therefore betweene vs and the Papistes touching good workes consi­steth in foure thinges, to wit, in the matter, efficient causes; in the manner; and in the oft doing of good woorkes. If we shal proue this thing by euident argumentes, I thinke there is none but wil graunt, if so be he wil yeelde vnto the truth, rather than to the va­nitie of his own minde, that for iust causes we are prouoked thus to contend.

The firste difference therefore is taken from the matter of workes.1. Differēce, concerning the matter of good workes. For the Papistes doe place their chiefest workes, and worship in the traditions of men, the which theie pre­ferre before Gods comaundementes: which traditions for al that partelie be in their kinde indifferent,Of Papistes works what the chiefe. as appointed fastes, and certaine songues, but in their vse and ende vtterlie wicked;Papistical traditions of what sorts. because theie put à confidence in them, while theie perswade themselues that by obseruing of them, theie doe merite the remission of sinnes: partlie theie are super­stitious, & meerelie ethnical, as hallowing of water, of fire, of herbes, of candles with infinit [Page 512] such toies, wherevnto also theie doe ascribe the power to abolish sinne, and driue awaie diuels: and partlie theie are apparantlie wic­ked, as such are that are contrarie to the word of God, as is the inuocation of saintes; the marchandise of masses; the worshipping of I­mages; the bearing about, & adoratiō of bread. These and the like traditions, the Papistes with fire and sworde doe vphould, caring little or nothing at al for the breach of God his commaundements, as euidentlie appeareth by the verie punishmentes which theie doe appoint.Howe the Papistes doe regarde the commande­mentes of God. For in the Papacie the contempt of the idolatrous Masse is more sharpelie pu­nished, than adulterie or incest. A much more heinous offence is it among the Papists to eate flesh vpon à Fridaie, than to kil à man vpon anie daie. Wherebie it is apparent that the Papistes doe preferre their traditions be­fore the commaundementes of God:The proper note of Antichrist. which thing is the proper note of Antichrist. For, as theie contemne the sentence pronounced against the Pharisees,Mark. 7, 7. which is, Theie worship me in vaine, teaching for doctrine mans traditi­ons: So theie doe rashlie arrogate to them­selues power to make lawes in the Church of God: which thing is doubtlesse none other thing than to exalt thēselues aboue God, who chalengeth to himselfe alone the authoritie to enact lawes in his owne kingdome.

[Page 513] But we doe submit our selues to God,The princi­pal good workes of Protestants. whose commandements we both doe beleeue, and teach also to be the rules of good workes. But the commaundementes and traditions of men, we do not acknowledg for the seruice of of God, but rather with Paul we pronounce them to be the doctrine of diuels. 1. Tim. 4, 1. For this com­maundement of God, Walke in my preceptes, and not in the preceptes of your fathers, we doe preferre before the authoritie of al men what­soeuer, and of Angels. Nowe let the godlie reader iudge, wether it be more conuenient to yeelde to the Papistes or to vs, in the mat­ter or substance of good works. For my part, I thinke no man is so mad, as to obeie men, who both can deceiue, and maie be deceiued, rather than God that cannot erre.

The second difference is fetcht from the efficient causes.2. Differēc [...] of good workes. The Papistes with the Pela­gians, doe imagine good workes to proceede from free wil.The efficiē [...] cause of Pa­pistical workes. For theie doe teach that men before regeneration, by their pure natural powers, can doe good workes (which theie doe cal merites of congruitie) and by them merite fauour▪ Whose error by euident proofes drawne from the word of God, we haue aboueChap. 3. of this last part. confuted.

But we with Christ, the Prophets, and Apostles, doe affirme that no good workes, as the seruice of God, can be wrought before [Page 514] wee be regenerated. For Christe doth saie, without me ye can doe nothing. Ioh. 15, 5. Moses and the Prophetes doe pronounce the hearte of man naturallie to be wicked.Phil. 1, 6. Paul he saith; I am perswaded, that he that hath begunne this good worke in you, wil perfourme it vntil the daie of Iesus Christ. Phil. 2, 13. And in another place, It is God which worketh in you both the wil and the deede. These wordes doe plainelie witnesse howe good works doe not proceede frō nature, but from grace; which thing howe it is done, we nowe brieflie wil declare.Three things ne­cessarilie re­quired in à good worke, or in à good worker ra­ther. Three thinges ther­fore vnto the actiō of virtue, or à good worke, namelie iudgement of minde, wil, and power, be required. The iudgement of the minde, God, by his light, that is, by his word, wherin the holie spirit worketh, doth inlighten, that we maie both knowe what pleaseth, and what displeaseth God, à certaine some whereof is proponed in the tenne commaundementes, and more at large are opened in the writinges of the Prophets and Apostles. And this is it which Dauid saith,Psal. 119, 105. Thy word is à lanterne vnto my feete.

Secondlie God maketh the wil of the wic­ked, good, while he doth renue the same in the regenerate by his holie spirite.The wil of man. The wil, as it is à natural facultie, hath in it selfe no qua­litie at al; but is altogether such, as yt is which it imbraceth. If the thing be good, the wil is [Page 515] good; but if the thing be euil, it is euil. And therefore Damascene doth rightlie define it, That the wil it selfe is of nature: but diuerslie to wil, is proper to the person. And Chrysostome, The wil is ingraffed and bredde in vs by nature, and it is also of God. And the wil of this or that thing is ours, and our iudgement, that is not of nature, but of the person. But nowe, when the state of the person doth change, the qualitie of ye wil must change also of necessi­tie. But that the person is wicked, as that which is led by the sense of the flesh, and vn­derstandeth not the thinges which are of the spirite of God, before regeneration, it hath aboueIn the 3. Chap. of this 4. part. beene declared. And therefore there is no doubt, but the wil of à person not iustified, is euil, that is, wicked, set againste God, the slaue to sinne, albeit it worketh freelie, and not constreinedlie. For volun­tarilie it chooseth euil for good things. This will of man, before regeneration, would haue God altogether either not to be able, or not willing to reuenge, or ignorāt altogether of ye wickednes it hath committed. And therefore that woulde that he were not à God, which so much as in it is, would haue him to be ei­ther of no power, or not righteous, or i­gnorant. Cruel, and altogether curssed malice is it, to desire that the power, iustice, and wisedome of God should perish.

[Page 516] But, forsomuch as in iustification, man is at once both regenerated, and made à newe creature in Christ Iesus, according to the mā ­ner of this newe state, the wil of the person taketh à newe qualitie, so that the wil which before regeration was euil, the slaue of sinne, and enimie to God, is nowe made good, free, à friend of God, and deliting in his commaun­dements. For the minde being lightened by the worde, and the heart through faith being purified, the wil commaundeth those thinges, which the sound iudgement of the mind doth allow, and wherevnto the pure affections doe incline. Therefore as the regenerate man is à newe creature: so the wil of à newe man, is created anewe by the holie Ghost; euen as Dauid declareth when he saith:Psal. 51, 10 Create in me à cleane heart, ô God, and renne à right spirit within me. By the hearte he vnderstandeth both pure affections, and also à wil obeying pure affections: by à right spirite he meaneth the election of the wil, and purpose in that which is good. So that it is the worke of God his spirit, that the wil is made good where it was euil; which being made good, it worketh cheerefullie (yet through grace) and not con­strainedlie, otherwise wil should not be wil.

In the thirde place, the iudgement of the minde being reformed by the word; and the wil renewed through the holie Ghost, the [Page 517] strength also by little & little is restored, and, according to the measure of faith, doe grow, wherbie we begin to doe somewhat which pleaseth God, although in this life we shal neuer be able to satisfie the lawe, according to the rigor of his iustice. The repairing of this strength is wrought by the virtue of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ in the faithful. This virtue of Christ is after à sorte depainted in our baptisme, as Paul teacheth in his 6. chapter vnto the Romanes. Moreouer, when the person which is iuste through faith, keepeth à good conscience, and thinketh continualie of going forwarde, his defections are wel taken; for he is not vnder the lawe, but vnder grace.

The thirde difference betweene the Pa­pistes and vs about good workes,3. Differēce about good workes. is taken from the manner. For theie doe thinke that to be a good worke, when that is externallie done, that is commaunded. For theie re­quire no more vnto the forme of à good work, than the action it selfe.

But wee with Augustine doe pronounce, that à worke ought then to be called and thought good, when the thing commaunded is done as it should be, according to the mind of the commaunder. The hypocritical Pha­risee giueth almes; and the iustified Publican giueth almes in like sorte. His, that is the [Page 518] Pharisies almes the Papists define to be a good worke; whereas before God it is abhominable: but we pronounce the Publicane his almes a good worke, not onely because it is comman­ded, but specialy because through faith, wher­by the Publicane was iustified, it was done to the glorie of God. And therefore it hath the forme of a good worke, when the worke com­manded of God, by a person iustified through faith, is done principaly for God his glorie. And a worke so done, whether it be an inward or an outward work, is the spiritual seruice of God.

Moreouer, wheras certain ciuil works, done euen of such as are not iustified by faith, are profitable and do good to manie, and therfore thought good works▪ I grant they are so caled, and be such too, but in vse, not in seruice. For whatsoeuer an impure person doth, it is vn­pure & abominable before God. And though God sometime doe recompence such workes with rewardes, he doth it for the vse sake, not because they are the seruice that pleaseth him, or be good of themselues.

The fourth thing wherin we dissent from the Papists in the doctrine of good workes,4. Differēce about good workes. is ye diuersitie of ends. For they do appoint other endes of good works than we do, which folow the direction of God his worde. For they say good works are to be done, yt we may deserue [Page 519] fauor, & be iustified through our works before God. But how false & absurd this Pharisaical opinion is, we haue already in the first order of testimonies declared. That no works do merit fauor iustificatiō, it is hereby manifest, because an euil tree cānot bring forth good fruite. Matt. 7, 18. Therfore what can a mā not renued, seeing he is wicked, vnpure, without vnderstanding, vnprofitable, merit by vnpure works? Again, if a man be iu­stified by works before God, it must needes of necessitie be, either because he fulfilleth ye whol law, according to ye rule of God his iustice, or in respect of particular obseruing som certaine commandement. But each is false. For as aboue Chap. 3. of this fourth part.we haue proued, no mortal man can fulfil the whole law of God, neither before conuersion nor after. Secondly, it is manifest that none is iustified by a particular fact, both because it is not the fulfilling of the law, which is required vnto ye righteousnes of the law; & also for that he which faileth in one commandement, Iam. 2, 10. as Iames doth say, is guiltie of al. Then seeing no man may be iustified neither by the whole law, nor by a part of the same, in vane doe the Papists contend, that the ende of the lawe is, that men by their owne workes should be iustified in the sight of God.

But we do teach that good workes be ther­fore to be don,The true ende of good workes. that being iustified by faith, we [Page 520] may giue due obedience to God, as children to a most louing father; that we may be founde liuely branches, and bearing frute in the true vine, which is Iesus Christ; that men seeing our good workes, may glorifie God, and be pro­uoked vnto wel doing by our example; that through good works we may be directed vn­to ye hauen of blessednes; that by good workes, as by an vndoubted marke of Gods children, we may shew our selues enimies to Satan, whō in baptisme we renounced; yt we may encrease ye ioy of the angels in heauen, which are much delited with the repentance of men, aud with holines of life; and that by workes we may be knowne, and declared to be truly righteous, that is, that we be not deceaued with a vaine shew of faith, as it happeneth vnto hypocrits, as Iames in his seconde chapter declareth; for whom to be iustified is to be declared and ac­knowledged righteous before the world.Iam. 2, 23. A­braham beleeued, aud is was imputed vnto him for righteousnes. Bu when at the commaundement of God, he was readie to kil his onely sonne, by his willingnes to obey, he declared how he was righteous, not onely to others, but also to himselfe. For liuely faith hath this propertie, that it preferreth obedience toward God be­fore al worldly things, be they neuer so deere, as appeareth in Abraham. So that he which is so affected, that he desireth nothing so much [Page 521] as to obey God, and to preferre obedience to him-ward before al things els, he hath a most certaine token of a liuely faith, and of the spirit of Christ, wherby he is moued, dwelling with in him.Rom. 8, 14. For so many as are led by the spirit of God, saith Paule, they are the sonnes of God, to wit, through faith, a true note wherof is that moti­on of the spirite, wherby we are moued to yeelde obedience to God with al readines; al­though we continualy do feele a combat of the flesh with the spirit, which fight vndoubtedly in this life, shal neuer cease.

The summe of this difference, tendeth to this point. The papists do make workes to de­serue and to procure saluation: we with Paul number them among the effectes of faith, and fruits of the righteousnes of faith. The Papists doe place the perfection of righteousnes in works; we define them to be an obedience be­gon, pleasing God, because of the persō that is righteous, which obedience can no more be se­parated from free iustification, than the natu­ral propertie from the subiect it hath, as heate from fire, as aboue hath been showen.

CHAP. 6.
1 The fourth order of testimonies; 2. The rewardes promised vnto good workes.

[Page 522] THe fourth order, as we proposed, is tou­ching the rewarde of good workes, accor­ding to the promises of god, which the godly, without iustification, do lawfully behold, and through faith expect the things promised, as Moses is written by faith to haue had respect vn­to the recompence of the reward. Heb. 11, 26. Moreouer, the rewarde is promised to good works, somtime simply to euery man, sometime specialy to this or that man for a particular worke, which is o­bediēce in some certain thing. And that right­ly without error we may iudge of such cōmon and special promises, this principle is to be kept in minde, namely, that al promises with­out Christ be to none effecte. For, if as Paul saith,2. Cor, 1, 20. al the promises of God are in Christ yea and Amen, that is, firme and ratified; it foloweth, that no promises without Christ can take ef­fect & be firme. Whereof this also is gathered, that none obedience without Christ, doth me­rit reward. Now this foundation being cast, let vs entreate of the promises of rewarde, ac­cording vnto the difference which we haue proposed.

Therefore when reward is promised simply or in general to euery man for good workes, as when both in the Psalmes, and also in Paul it is said,Psal. 62, 12. He wil reward euery one according to his workes, Rom. 2, 6. the promise must be applied by a distinction. For such a promise hath a double [Page 523] respect. Because it is to be referred either vnto the vnregenerate, or vnto the regenerate. If it be applied vnto the vnregenerate, which are without Christ, by the principle which we haue set downe, it must needes folow that it is neither ratified, nor performable: wherefore it is referred vnto the first order of testimonies. For it proponeth the iudgement of the lawe concerning the rewardes of good workes. But forsomuch as an impossible condition, name­ly,Leuit. 18, 5. if a man do my commaundements, he shal liue in them, is annexed, it cannot be, but that the vnregenerate are subiect vnto this damnatorie sentence of ye law,Gala 3, 13. Curssed is euery man that continueth not in al things which be written in the booke of the law, Deut. 27, 26 to do them.

But if such a promise be referred vnto the regenerate in Christ, the promise is firme an