THE DOVVNEFALL OF POPERIE: Proposed by way of a new challenge to all English Iesuits and Iesuited or Italianized pa­pists: daring them all iointly, and euery one of them seueral­ly, to make answere thereunto if they can, or haue any truth on their side; knowing for a truth that otherwise all the world will crie with open mouths, Fie vpon them, and their patched hotch­potch religion.

Psal. 116. vers. 10.

Credidi, propter quod loquutus sum.

LONDON. Printed by A. Jslip, for Arthur Iohn­son: and are to be sold at the signe of the White Horse, ouer against the great North doore of Paules. 1604.

TO THE MOST PV­issant, Wise, Vertuous, Learned, Iudicious, and Religious Monarch, James, by Gods permission and holy ordinance, king of Eng­land, Scotland, France, and Ireland, defendour of the auncient Christian Catholike faith, and supreme gouer­nour within his said Realmes, Kingdomes, Territo­tories, and Dominions, next and immedi­ately vnder God, ouer all persons and causes, as well Ecclesi­asticall as Ciuile.

THe Truth is of such force (most gra­cious and dread Soueraigne) that it hath enforced the professed enemies of truth (the cursed brood of Eng­lish traitorous Iesuits and Iesuited papists I meane) to testifie the truth against themselues. The secular Seminarie priests (the Popes owne deere vassals, who professe the selfesame [Page] religion with the Iesuits, and yeeld the selfe same obe­dience to the Pope,) tell vs plainly in printed bookes puplished to the view of the whole world (a thing ve­rie rare and greatly to bee admired) of such brutish, barbarous, cruell, villanous, traytorous, and most bloodie dealing, practised not onely by their deere brethren the Iesuites, but euen by themselues also, though not in one or the same degree; that my selfe doubtlesse could neuer haue giuen credit thereunto, if their owne selues had not so written, and so testified against themselues. They affirme constantly, in ma­ny printed bookes published to the view of the whole world, that the Iesuits by treacherous practises and most bloodie complots, haue long sought for the vt­ter ruine and conquest of noble England, and that their owne hearts and hands had sometime beene im­brewed with the same. They affirme against the Ie­suits: First, that they are great lyers. Secondly, that they are proud men, richly apparelled, furnished with coaches, and attended on with a great traine of ser­uingmen, as if they were Barrons or Earles: Yea, it is constantly auouched, that the Iesuit Gerard had two geldings in a gentlemans stable, at thirtie pounds a gelding, besides others else where, and horses of good vse. It is also set downe in print, that a Iesuit had a girdle and hangers of thirtie pound price. Third­ly, that they trowle vp and downe from good cheere to good cheere, commaunding their chambers to bee perfumed, and gentlewomen to pull off their boots. Fourthly, that they are great statesmen, and that mat­ters of state, titles of princes, genealogies of kings, [Page] right of succession, disposing of scepters, with other matters of like qualitie, are their chiefe studies. Fift­ly, that they threaten a conquest, and promise great preferment to all that will execute their most trai­torous designements. Sixtly, that they are cruell tyrants, and firebrands of all sedition. Seuenthly, that they are theeues and murderers, and that the Iesuit Percie stole seuen and twentie pound of the common money, by the consent of the other his fellow Iesuits. Eightly, that they haue a mint of counterfeit miracles, with which they labour to seduce the world: Yea, that they endeuoured with a false miracle, to persuade Sebastian the late king of Portugall, to establish a setled law, That from thence forward none might bee capable of the crowne of Portugall, except hee were a Iesuit, or chosen by their societie, as at Rome the Pope is chosen by the Colledge of Cardinals. Nninthly, that the Iesuits are right Machiauels, and that who­soeuer will adhere vnto thē, must depend vpon the deuil of hell. Tenthly, that the Iesuits are flat cou­siners; and that their religion is nothing else, but an hotchpotch of omnigitherum. And to knit vp all in a word, that they are the wickedst men vpon earth.

They confesse against themselues: first, that Sanders a secular priest, was the architect of re­ligion, both in England and in Ireland. Second­ly, that the same Sanders did too much extoll the rebels, seeing they were executed by the auncient lawes of our countrey, for high treason. Thirdly, that the Iesuits came into England by the [Page] instinct of the deuill, and were the chiefest instru­ments of all traitorous practises against our late Soueraine of most happie memorie. Fourthly, that popish Seminaries are erected for treason. Fift­ly, that the Iesuits and the secular priests expected a chaunge, which now they haue indeed; but God bee thanked, to their euerlasting woe and griefe. Sixtly, that the Seminarie priests are sworne to be traytours against their dread Soueraigne and natiue countrey. Seuenthly, that all Iesuited pa­pists must depend vpon the deuill. Eightly, that po­perie is inseparably annexed with treason. Ninth­ly, that the hearts and hands of the secular priests, had sometime beene as deepe in treasonable practi­ses, as the cursed crew of Iesuits. Tenthly, that the lawes of the land are iustly made, both a­gainst the Iesuits and themselues; and that they are not put to death for religion, but for treason. Eleuenthly, that long hidden treasons are miracu­lously reuealed, God so appointing it to be done. All these asseuerations to be true, (most dread So­ueraine) I am readie to iustifie out of their owne printed bookes, euen vpon the perill of my life: if any of them vpon the like perill, will challenge mee to haue charged them falsly in that behalfe. This notwithstandlng, the Iesuits, Seminaries, and other Iesuited papists, doe still expect a tollera­tion, to liue as they list, within your Maiesties king­domes and dominions; that is in plaine English, to bee rancke traytours as they haue beene. For this end they neuer cease to buzze into mens [Page] heads and eares (so to withdraw them from their due allegeance, and to become popish vassals) that the next parliament, they shall not faile of their desire. Against this cursed brood, I haue pub­lished many bookes; but to this day, could I not receiue answere to any of them all. Neither can they alledge for their excuse, that they haue not seene my bookes, or else they would haue an­swered the same. For, about a yeere agoe the masked Iesuit E. O. did publish a treatise against two learned writers of this age,Viz. Against M. D. Sutcliffe and M. Willet. in which he ta­keth notice to the bookes which I have publi­shed against them, and their late vpstart Romish religion; which by piece meale, and by little and lit­tle hath crept into the Church, as I haue prooued at large in my former volumes.

These are the expresse wordes of the masked Iesuit;In his Preface to the reader. To these former, I was once determined to haue adioined a reformed brother of theirs, one Thomas Bell, who hath published certaine bookes against the Catholicke Church, and vaunteth mightily, and with insolent words braueth all Se­minaries: but I altered my purpose, partly vpon other considerations, but especially, because the confutation of his worthy workes is alreadie vn­dertaken, and to bee published, if it shall bee thought necessarie.

Thus doth the Iesuit write. By whose wordes it is very apparant, cleere, and euident, that they haue beene many yeeres buzzing about some an­swere, either to all or some one of my bookes; [Page] but neuer yet durst aduenture to frame any an­swere to any one of the said bookes, and to pub­lish it to the view of the world. Their silence in not answering my said bookes, hath reclaimed ma­ny a man from their popish faction: and therefore would they gladly haue the the world to thinke, that they are in mind to answere my said bookes, but they seeme to meane nothing lesse in deed: and why? hee telleth vs forsooth, That the con­futation which hath beene long vndertaken, must be published, but with this addition, (If it shall be thought necessarie.) What a iest is this? the Iesuits and Seminarie priests, haue consulted now for the space of eight yeeres and aboue, and haue all that time deuised how to frame some colourable an­swere at the least, to all or some of the said bookes; and in the end of the yeere, 1602, haue vnderta­ken the confutation of my worthy workes (as they scornefully tearme them;) but for all that cannot yet tell, whether it be expedient to publish the said confutation, or no. Are these men the great Statists of the world? are these men the skilfull Polititians that must manage all Europe? are these our learned Diuines? are these they indeed, vpon whose doctrin and guiding all Lay-papists do depend, and on their shoulders do hang their soules and saluation? doubt­lesse, they may preach this goodly sermon to wise men, but onely noddies and starke fooles will be­leeue them. In regard hereof (most dread Soue­raigne) and because I greatly desire once during my life, to receiue answere to some part of my labours [Page] published against our English Iesuited papists, that so wee may valianly fight the combat, my selfe so hauing occasion to reply vpon their answere, which would bee to mee melle & fauo dulcius; I haue compiled and couched in a small roome, a fewe distinct articles: for answere whereunto, I once againe challenge Robert Persons that traitorous Ie­suit; George Blackwell that seditious and late start-vp archpriest; and all other English Iesuits, Se­minarie priests, and Iesuited papists, whosoeuer and wheresoeuer, ioyntly and seuerally; daring them all ioyntly, and euerie one of them seue­rally, to answere either all my bookes, or some one of them, or these few articles; or at least to confesse plainely, that they cannot answere, because I hold and defend the truth. These my late studies (most gratious Soueraigne) I haue presumed to dedicate vnto your Maiestie, in con­gratulation of your most happie raigne ouer vs; whom God of his great mercie hath raised vp in our greatest necessitie, to continue his holy Gos­pell among vs, and to abolish all idolatrie and su­perstition out of his Church. It is not such a pre­sent I confesse, as beseemeth your most royall excellencie; yet such a one, as my small talent is able to affoord: I most humbly beseech your Highnesse for to accept it, as our Lord Iesus Christ did accept the two mytes of the poore widdow; and withall for to protect and patro­nize the same, against the traitorous Iesuits and [Page] Iesuited papists within your Maiesties Realmes; who seeke by might and maine (as I am credi­bly informed) not onely to impaire my good fame and name with their malicious tongues, but also to take away my life with their bloodie hands. The Almightie blesse your Maiestie with long, prosperous, and happie raigne in this world, and with euerlasting life in the world to come, Amen. From my studie this fourteenth of Ianu­arie. 1603.

Your Maiesties loyall subiect, and faithfull seruant, Thomas Bell.

To all English Iesuits, Semina­rie priests, and Iesuited papists, in England, Scotland, or wheresoeuer els.

I Haue written many times at large in larger volumes,In my Mo­tiues, booke 2. chap. 1. hearti­ly and instantlie desiring to haue receiued some answere from you, either from all ioyntly, or from some of you seuerallie. In my first booke, published in the yeare 1593, I promised to yeeld, if any of you could conuince me; either to haue alleadged any writer corruptlie, or to haue quoted any place guilefullie, or to haue charged any author falslie: since that time I haue challenged you againe and againe to answere me, but Ne gry qui­dem will be had; no answere can you make, or dare you make. In regard hereof, I haue at this present compi­led a few articles couched in a small roome, challenging you once againe, to frame the best answere you can vnto the same: if you can sieceerelie and trulie confute these articles, or any one of my former bookes, I promise herewith (and I protest before God to performe it) to subscribe vnto your doctrine. If you therefore shall re­fuse [Page] to answere me, because you cannot, (for if you can, you will vndoubtedlie performe it) all wise men which haue any care of their saluation, will without all peraduenture after notice hereof made knowen vnto them, crie, Fie vpon you and your religion. Answere therefore ô papists, if ye can; if ye cannot so doe, then repent for shame, and yeeld vnto the truth. Farewell.

THE FIRST ARTICLE, of the falsely so supposed soueraignetie of the Bishop of Rome.

YOu Papists tell vs, that your Pope, the Bishop of Rome, is aboue all powers and po­tentates on earth, that he can depose kings and em­perours from their royall thrones, and translate their empires and regalities at his good will and pleasure. But this doctrine is false, absurd, and nothing els but a meere fable: and consequently, late Romish religion consisteth of meere falshoods, fa­bles, and flat leasings.

The proposition, the Iesuit Bellarmine that late Romish Cardinall,Bellarm. lib. 5. de Rom. pont. ca. 7. col. 824. setteth downe in these words: Si ergo princeps aliquis ex oue aut ariete fiat lupus, id est, ex Christiano fiat haere­ticus, poterit pastor ecclesiae eum arcere per excommunicationem, & simul iubere populo, ne eum sequantur, ac proinde priuare eum do­minio in subditos.

If therefore any prince, of a sheepe or ramme become a wolfe, that is to say, of a Christian be made an heretick; then the pastors of the Church (the Pope forsooth) may [Page 2] driue him away by excommunication, and withall com­maund the people not to obey him, and therfore depriue him of his dominion ouer his subiects. Thus we see, that when any prince is not, or ceaseth to be a Papist, for that (with this Iesuiticall Cardinall and all others of his brood) is to be an hereticke; then the Pope forsooth may de­pose such a prince from his royall scepter, and absolue his subiects from their alleageance to him. This is the common doctrine of all Iesuited papists, as I haue proued in my anatomie of Popish tyrannie.

The assumption is prooued by the flat testimonie of their famous Pope Gregorie the great,Gregor. lib. 2. epist. 61. cap. 100 in these words: Ego quidem iussioni subiectus, eandem legem per diuersas terrarum partes transmittifeci; & quia lex ipsa omnipotenti deo minime con­cordat, ecce, per suggestionis meae paginam, serenissimis dominis nunciaui; vtrobique ergo quae debui exolui, qui & imperatori obe­dientiam praebui, & pro deo quod sensi, minimè tacui.

I being your subiect, and at your commaund, haue caused the same law to be sent through diuerse parts of the land; and because the law it selfe doth not accord to Gods will, behold, I haue signified so much vnto your ma­iesties by my epistle; and so I haue discharged my dutie in both respects, as who haue rendered mine obedience to the emperour, and haue not concealed what I thought in Gods behalfe.

These are the words of Gregorius, who was himselfe bi­shop of Rome anno 603. and liued aboue six hundred yeares after Christ; for which time the Popes liued in du­tifull obedience vnder the emperours, as is euident by his expresse words alreadie alleaged: For first, Pope Grego­rie freely and willingly acknowledgeth the emperour to be his soueraigne lord.

Secondly, he confesseth himselfe to be the empe­rours subiect.

Thirdly, he graunteth that he oweth loyall obedi­ence to the emperour, and for that respect he thought himselfe bound in conscience to publish the emperours [Page 3] law, though in some part it seemed to disagree with Gods will; and that (forsooth) least he should be found guil­tie of disloyaltie toward his prince.

Fourthly, this alleageance he acknowledged to the emperour Mauritius, who liued more than six hundred yeares after Christs sacred incarnation. During which tearme of years, the bishops of Rome, now called Popes, liued in subiection to the emperours of Rome, as other bishops doe this day to their lawfull kings.

S. Ambrose freeth kings from all lawes made by man,Ambros. de apologia Dauid, cap. 10. pag. 386. these are his expresse words: Rex vtique erat, nullis ipse legi­bus tenebatur humanis. Neque enim reges vllis ad poenam vocantur legibus, tuti imperij potestate. Homini ergo non peccauit, cui non tenebatur obnoxius.

He was indeed a king, he was subiect to no law of man: for kings being freed by royall prerogatiues of im­periall power, are not punishable by the lawes of man. He therefore sinned not to man, to whom he was not sub­iect. S. Hierome teacheth the same doctrine,Hieron. tom. 1. fol. 63. d. if his words be well marked.

Enthimius hath these words, Cum sim vex,Enthi. in Psal. 50. & te solum com­missorum à me scelerum iudicem habeam, tibi soli peccasse videor, hoc est, tibi soli iudici subijcior. Coeterorum enim omnium ego domi­nus sum, & ob potentiam meam licere mihi videntur, quaecunque libuerint.

Seeing I am a king, and haue thee only my iudge ouer my sinnes, I seeme to sinne onely to thee; that is, I am subject onely to thee, as to my iudge. For I am lord ouer all others, and in regard of my power and maiestie, what­soeuer pleaseth me, seemeth to be lawfull for me.

The Popish ordinarie glosse singeth the same song,Glossa ordin. in Ps. 50. these are the expresse words: Rex omnibus superior, tantum à deo puniendus est.

The king is aboue all, and he can be punished of none but of God alone.

Nicolaus Lyranus, Lyranus in Ps. 50. a man of great reckoning with the papists, teacheth the same doctrine with the rest. These [Page 4] are his expresse words; Tibi soli peccaui, scilicet tanquam iu­dici & punire potenti. Peccauerat enim contra Vriam, & alios occasi­one huius interfectos. Tamen quia erat rex, non habebat iudicem superiorem qui posset eum punire, nisi deum.

To thee onely haue I sinned; that is to say, to thee on­ly, as to my iudge, and to him that can punish me. For he had now sinned against Vrias and others, whom he caused to be murthered by that occasion: yet because he was a king, he had no superior iudge that could punish or con­troule him, saue God alone.

Thomas Aquinas, Aquin. 1. 2. q. 96. ar. 5. ad. 3. being as it were halfe a god with the Papists, teacheth the selfesame doctrine, with Lyra and the rest. But I hasten to the verdict of a Cardinall of Rome.

Hugo Cardinalis hath these expresse words;Hugo Card. in Ps. 50. Tibi soli, quia non est super me alius quam tu, qui possit punire. Ego enim sum rex, & non est aliquis praeter te super me.

To thee onely, saith Cardinall Hugo, See S. Cyprians opinion in the sixt article fol­lowing, in the first propositi­on and second reason; and note it well, because it is of great impor­tance. because there is not any aboue me but thy selfe alone, that hath power to punish me: for I am a king, and so besides thee, there is none aboue me.

Thus gentle reader, it is cleere and euident, as well by the flat testimonie of the auntient fathers, as also of most famous and renowned Popish writers; that the Pope or Bishop of Rome is so farre from hauing power to depose kings and emperours, that he himselfe ought to be subiect to them, and hath no authoritie at all to pu­nish them. VVhat can be more plainely spoken? what testimonies can be more manifest? what doctrine can be clearer? for if none but God be superior to the king, if none but God can iudge the king, if none but God can punish the king, (all which both auntient fathers and the Popes owne deare doctors affirme) then doubt­lesse cannot the Pope depose the king; then can he not absolue his subiects from their alleageance; then can he not translate empires and kingdomes, and bestow the same at his owne pleasure. The good kings, Iosue, Dauid, [Page 5] Salomon, Iosaphat, Ezechias, and Iosias, knew right well, that they had authoritie aboue all the priests, and there­fore tooke vpon them, not onely to commaund and controll them, but also to depose and thrust them from their places and functions, yea euen the high priests themselues, when their deserts did so require. VVhich thing is prooued at large in my golden ballance of triall. Yet here for better satisfaction of the vulgar people, I will propound a common obiection, that much troubleth many of them; and that done, frame a plaine and sincere solution to the same.

The Obiection.

The empire was translated by the Popes authoritie, and the emperours after their election are this day con­firmed by the Pope: yea, many emperors haue acknow­ledged the Popes soueraignetie ouer them, in so much as they haue fallen downe prostrate, and kissed his holy feet.

The Answere.

I answere, that many absurd things haue beene affir­med by Popish parasites, for the aduancement of the primacie, as Franciscus à Victoria, a famous Popish schoole doctor, and Spanish frier, sometime professour of Theo­logie in the Vniuersitie of Salmantica,Victor. de potest, eccles. relect. 1. sect. 6. p. 39. doth testifie in these words; Sed gloss atores iuris hoc dominium dederunt papae, cum ipsi essent pauperes rebus & doctrina.

But the glossers of the Popes law (saith this great do­ctor and zealous papist, for the truth it selfe enforced him to vtter the truth) gaue this dominion (and these lordly titles) vnto the Pope, when themselues were blind bay­ards and beggerly fellowes.

Thus writeth their owne Popish Frier, affirming that ignorance and pouertie were the beginning of all lordly poperie: and no maruell; for by reason of their pouertie [Page 6] they flattered and sought to please the Pope, and by reason of their ignorance, they set abroach many things which they did not vnderstand.

Iohannes Gerson, a famous papist likewise, and sometime chancelour of Paris, reporteth much like stuffe, and more lordly titles, ascribed to the Pope by his popish pa­rasites.Gerson de potest. eccles. consid. 12 part. 3. These are his expresse words; Sicut Christo collata estomnis potestas in coelo & in terra, sic eam Christus, omnem Petro suis (que) successoribus dereliquit. Sequitur; sicut non est potestas nisi à deo, sic nec aliqua temporalis vel ecclesiastica, imperialis vel rega­lis, nisi à Papa; in cuius foemore scripsit Christus, rex regum, do­minus dominantium; de cuius potestate disputare, instar sacrilegij est; cui ne (que) quisquam dicere potest, cur ita facis.

As all power was giuen to Christ in heauen and on earth, so Christ left all the same power to Peter, and to his successours (the Bishops of Rome.) As there is no power but of God, so is there neither any temporall or ecclesia­sticall, neither imperiall nor regall, but of the Pope; in whose thigh Christ hath written, the king of kings and lord of lords; of whose power to dispute, is as it were sa­criledge; to whome no man may say, VVhy doest thou so?

These are the words of this great learned doctor, who though he were a zealous papist, yet could he not con­ceale these Antichristian blasphemies within his breast. Neuerthelesse Pope Boniface, or (if ye will) Pope maliface, did not only acknowledge them, but with great pleasure practised the same, as witnesseth the said Gerson in these words; Hanc existimationem habuisse visus est Bonifacius octa­uus in quadam decretali; putatur ab alijs, Gerson vbi su­pra. depositio vnius regis fran­ciae per papam Zachariam hic esse fundata; tanquam papa sit, qui transferre possit reges & regna.

Pope Boniface the eight seemeth in a certaine decretall to haue had this opinion of his owne authoritie. Others thinke, that the deposition of (Childericus) the French king by Pope Zacharie, was grounded in this (Antichristi­an and godlesse conceit;) as if forsooth the Pope were [Page 7] he, that could depose princes, and translate their king­domes.

By these authorities it is cleare, that the late Bishops of Rome haue taken vpon them, not onely to depose kings, and to translate their kingdomes; but withall haue challenged more than humane and royall power, euen that power which is due and proper to God alone. So as we haue not so much to consider what hath beene done, as what ought of right to be done. I will therefore for perspicuitie sake proceed by way of gradation, and set downe the very steps of the ladder, by which the late bi­shops of Rome, did climbe vp to their vsurped tyrannicall primacie.

1 The first step, was the departure of the emperour Constantinus from Rome to Constantinople, at what time (as the Popes parasites tell vs) the emperour gaue large gifts to the Pope, euen his whole power, dominion, and territories, both in Rome, Italie, and all the VVest parts: for thus is it written by Gratian in the Popes own decrees: Constantinus imperator coronam & omnem regiam dignitatem, Dist. 96. can. Constantinus. in vrbe Romana, & in Italia, & in partibus occidentalibus Apostolico concessit. Sequitur, decreuimus ita (que) & hoc, vt ipse & successores eius diademate, viz. corona quam ex capite nostro illi concessimus ex auro purissime & gemmis pretiosis, vti debeat pro honore B. Petri. Constantine the emperour gaue the Pope his crowne and all royall dignitie in the citie of Rome, and in Italie, and in all the VVest parts. It followeth a little after in the next Cannon. VVe therefore haue made also this decree, that the Pope and his successours shall for the honour of S. Peter, weare the crown of pure gold and pretious stones, which we haue giuen him from off our owne head. Thus saith the decree. But Laurentius Valla, Raphael Voluteranus, Paulus Catthalanus, Bellarm. lib. 5. de rom. pont. cap. 9. Nicolaus Cusanus, and many other popish writers, repute the same as a fable. Yea our Iesuit Bellar­mine seemeth to doubt thereof, and of other like suppo­sed donations, and therefore hath he inuented a soue­raign remedie for the same. These are his expresse words: [Page 8] Extant Romae authentica instrumenta harum & similium donatio­num. Sed etiamsi nihil horum extaret, abunde sufficeret prescriptio 800. annorum. Nam etiam regna & imperia per latrocinium ac­quisita, tandem longo tempore flunt legitima.

There be extant at Rome authenticall instruments of these and the like gifts. But if there were no such thing, yet would prescription of 800 yeares be sufficient: for euen kingdomes & empires gotten by robberie, through continuance of time become lawfull. Thus writeth our Iesuit, who hath left nothing vnsaid, that can be said for poperie.

The second step, was the fall of the empire in the VVest. For after the diuision of the empire, it begun dai­ly to decline, and was vtterly dissolued in Augustulus, in the yeare 471.A. D. 471. of whom was made this epigram; Augu­stus romanum imperium condidit, Ar. Pontac. Burdeg. pag. 93. Augustulus labefactauit. Au­gustus set vp the empire, but Augustulus pulled it downe. For after Orestes his father was slaine (who was neuer em­perour but a captain vnder Nepos) the said Augustulus gaue vp the diademe, and betooke himselfe to a priuat life. From this time the empire in the VVest was vacant about 330 yeares. By meanes whereof, the Popes power did dai­ly increase by little and little, and from step to step.

The Vissigothes ruled in Spaine, the Abienes in Guian and Gascoyn, the Frenchmen in the residue of France, the Vandales in Affricke, the Saxones in Brit­taine, the Ostrogothes in Hungarie, the Herules and Tur­dilings in Italie and in the citie of Rome: onely the name of the empire, remained with Zenon in the East. About the yeare 536.A. D. 536. Totilas king of the Gothes by force of armes and famine subdued well neere all Italie, and after long siege tooke the citie of Rome, and spoyled it with sword and fire, ouerthrowing the wals and towers euen to the ground, and vntill Carolus magnus the Abiens and Barbari­ans possessed all Italie.

The third step was the voluntarie charter which Constantine the emperour of Constantinople made to [Page 9] Pope Benedict the second; viz. that whomsoeuer the cler­gie, people, and the Romane souldiours should chuse to be Bishop,A. D. 684 all men should beleeue him to be the true vi­car of Christ, without any tarrying for any authoritie of the emperour of Constantinople, or the deputie of Italie, as the custome and maner was euer before that day. Thus writeth Platina, Platina in vita Benedicti secūdi. who was the Popes owne deere vassale. This was a very gallant step: for as you see here, the Popes for the space almost of seuen hundred yeares, viz. vntill this Bennet in the yeare 684.Vide Ar. Pontac. fol. 111. a. acknowledged the em­perours for their superiours and lords, without whose let­ters pattents they could haue no iurisdiction, nor be re­puted the true Bishops of Rome: but now the Bishops of Rome by priuiledge graunted from this emperour, wre­sted their neckes from the emperours subiection. Let these words of Platina be well remembred; because he being a famous papist, must needs be of good credit a­gainst them.A. D. 607. I let passe the petite step, when the emperor Phocas made Rome the head of all churches, which for all that, is of some moment.

The fourth step, was the great amitie betweene Za­charie then Bishop of Rome, and Pipine gouernour of France vnder Childerich the king: for Pipine purposing to defeat his lord and soueraigne of the kingdome, and to inuest himselfe therein, sent his embassadours to Zacharie then Bishop of Rome, and his bounden friend, to de­maund this question of him, viz. VVhether he were more worthy to be king, which was king only by name and na­turall succession; or els he, who bare the whole burthen of the kingdome alone, & yet lacked the dignitie of a king? The Pope vnderstanding the parable right well, and re­specting his owne future aduancement likely to ensue thereupon, answered roundly (I will not say clerkely, but like a right doctor of the Romish rout) that it was more rightfull forsooth, that he which tooke the charge of all things, should be called king.A. D. 751. Vpon this iudgement so clerkely yeelded, Pipine forthwith presumed to depose [Page 10] Childerich, and made himselfe king: that done, saintlesse (not sackles) Zacharie the Bishop of Rome (that antichrists forerunner might be known)Geraes. 28. v. 12. assoiled Pipine and the other Frenchmen of their oath of allegeance and fealtie made to Childerich, and confirmed Pipine the traitor in the king­dome of France. This was indeed a step, not of Iacobs lad­der, nor of Scala coeli, but of Scala inferni, Scala Antichristi, and of the ladder of the master deuill of hell. Yet is not our Iesuit and Cardinall Bellarmine (the mouth of all pa­pists,Bellar. lib. 5. de Rom pont. cap. 8. and of the Pope himselfe) ashamed to publish the same as a ground of the popish religion. For these are his owne words: Childericum deposuit Zacharias, & in eius locum Pipinum Caroli magni patrem creari iussit. Cuius causa fuit, quia propter socordiam Childerici, & religioni & regno in Gallia extrema ruina imminere videbatur.

Pope Zacharie deposed Childericke, and commaunded to place and inuest Pipine, father to Charles the great, in his throne: the cause whereof was this; because forsooth through the slouthfull and negligent gouernment of Childericus, the kingdome and religion in Fraunce seemed to be in great danger. This is the deepe diuinitie of the Pope and his clergie, by which we may learne many wor­thie lessons.

1 First, that the Pope may set vp and pull downe kings at his pleasure by Iesuiticall doctrine and late Ro­mish religion.

2 Secondly, that the Pope and Iesuites are the grand­masters and architects of seditions, rebellions, and most bloudie treasons.

3 Thirdly, that it is very true which the secular priests haue written, concerning the traiterous proceedings of Iesuits and Iesuited papists.

4 Fourthly, that the Pope commaunded to depose the Soueraigne, and to inthronize the subiect in his place.

5 Fiftly, that all this was done, because forsooth the king did not rule after the Popes fansie and pleasure. Hereupon I inferre this necessarie correlarie; viz. that it [Page 11] behooueth Christian kings to be vigilant, and in due time to expell all traiterous papists out of their domini­ons. And if the Bishop of Rome shall send any seditious popeling into their kingdomes and territories, with his thunderbolts, buls, and excommunications; then to deale with the messengers,A. D. 1294. as king Philip the faire dealt with pope Boniface his nuncioes in France; whom he commit­ted to prison, and caused the Popes buls to be burnt in the fire. And as Charles the sixt, when Bennet the 13. did interdict his realme,A. D. 1408. sitting in the throne of iustice in his high court of parliament the 21 of May, in the yeere 1408. gaue sentence, that the bull should be rent in pie­ces, and that Gonsalue and Conseleux the bearer thereof should be set vpon a pillorie, and publickely traduced in the pulpit. The storie is set downe at large by the French papists, in their booke intituled the Iesuites catechisme, and the same is recorded in my anatomie of Popish tyrannie.

The fift step was the decay of the empire in the East about the yeere 756.A. D. 756. For when Aistulphus, or (as some write) Aristulphus king of the Lombards, besieged the ci­tie of Rome for the space of three whole moneths, exa­cting an huge tribute of the Romanes; then Pope Ste­phanus the second, made suite to Pipinus king of France to stand their good master, and to defend the citie from the furie of the Lombards. King Pipine willing to gratifie his good friend the Bishop of Rome, came with a mightie armie against Aistulphus, and besieged him in Pauie; and then and there constrained him to appeale to his mercie, and to yeeld vp the exerchate of Rauenna and Pentapo­lis into his hands.Manus manum fricat. This being effected, king Pipine (whom Pope Zacharie of a traitour had made king, as is alreadie prooued) gave vp the gouernment of Italie into the Popes hands. And the king had reason so to doe: for as we know, one good turne requires another. So now the lieutenants of the emperours of Constantinople, ended their whole power in Italie, who aforetime had their seats [Page 12] at Rauenna: and now was he taken out of the way, who (as the Apostle telleth vs) did hinder the comming of An­tichrist:2. Thess. 2. for Pope Stephen in way of gratitude confirmed the inheritance royall of the kingdome of France to the said Pipine and to his posteritie for euer. Here began a new progenie of the kings of France: for Childericus was the last king of the stocke of Meroneus, who was the first king Christian of France. This truth is apparant by the testi­monie of many renowned Chronographers, it cannot be denied.

The sixt step,Bellar. tom. 3. col. 827. was the translation of the Romane empire from the Greeks to the Frenchmen or Germans, in the person of magnificall Charles, as the Iesuit Bellarmine tearmeth him. The truth is this, as popish Chronogra­phers doe record and testifie to the world; viz. That when the Romanes had driuen from among them, Pope Leo the third, he appealed to Charles then king of France, who came to Rome, and examined the matter: and in the end appeased the Romanes, and restored the Pope to his place and dignitie againe. For this good worke and kind fauour of the king, the Pope, and people of Rome, hauing now a long time in mind and affection, reuolted from the emperour of Constantinople; and seeing a fit opportunitie offered to accomplish their long wished de­sires, did with vniforme consent and ioyfull acclamation proclaime Charles the great, the emperour of Rome, gi­uing him the imperiall names of Caesar and Augustus, and setting the royall diademe vpon his head by the hands of Pope Leo. And for the better credit of mine assertion, I will here recount the very words of Sigebertus, a famous Chronographer and popish monke,A. D. 801. who therefore must needs be of credit with the Pope and all his popelings. Thus doth he write: Romani qui ab imperatore Constantinopo­litano iam diu animo desciuerant, nunc accepta occasionis opportuni­tate, quia mulier excaecato imperatore Constantino filio suo eis impe­rabat, vno omnium consensu Carolo regi imperatorias laudes accla­mant, eumque per manum Leonis papae coronant, Caesarem & Au­gustum [Page 13] appellant; Pipinum verò filium eius regem Italiae ordina­tum collandant.

The Romanes, who a long time had in mind and affe­ction reuolted from the emperour of Constantinople, see­ing now a fit occasion offered them, because a woman did gouerne them, her sonne the emperour Constantine being made blind, did all with one consent found out imperiall and royall acclamations to king Charles, calling him Caesar and Augustus, and crowning him by the hand of Leo the Pope: yea they collaud his son Pipine made king of Italie.

Out of these words I wish the Reader, to obserue these important points with me.

1 First, that 800. yeeres after Christs sacred birth, the Bishops of Rome were subiect to the emperour, as their owne deere monke Sigebert telleth them; and as you haue heard already, Pope Gregorie acknowledged his fealtie to Mauritius the emperour, in the yeere 603.

2 Secondly, that the Pope and people of Rome en­deuoured a long time, to shake off the yoke of obedience to the emperour, and in the yeere 801 put the same in execution.

3 Thirdly, that the translation of the empire implied flat treason, in the Pope and all his Romish Popelings. For as Fryer Sigebert telleth vs, they surrendred vp the right of their soueraigne to an other man: and hence commeth it, that the Iesuiticall Cardinall Bellarmine ap­pealeth to the law of perscription, affirming titles gotten by robberie to be lawfull by that meanes. And indeede by stealth and robberie, it may well beseeme a Iesuite, to iustifie popish late start vp regalitie.

4 Fourthly, that the Bishop of Rome is not the true and lawfull king of Italie: for the papists doe not agree in their assertions, touching this counterfeit regalitie of their popes. Bl [...]ndus and Platina write, that Pippine gaue the exerchate of Rauenna and Pentapolis to Gregorie; Regino referreth the donation to Steuen; and Sigebert saith here, that Pippine in the yeere 801 had it in his owne pos­session [Page 14] still. Yea, the same Sigebert saith further, that in the yeere 812 the emperour Charles imposed the imperi­all crowne vpon the head of his sonne Lewis, and made Bernard sonne of Pippine the king of Italie. But doubtlesse if Pippine were king of Italie in the yeere 801 and Bernard king thereof in the yeere 812, I see not how the pope was then,A. D. 727. or that is now, any king at all. And therefore wee may credite Bellarmine at leisure, when he telleth vs out of Ado, that king Pippine gaue Reuenna and all Pentapolis to Saint Peter and Saint Paul: but it is well, that S. Paul is become coheire with Saint Peter. For by his meanes, o­ther bishops must haue as great a share, as the Bishops of Rome: there the reader must not forget, what frier Sige­bert telleth vs of Charles the great,A. D. 805. after that he was in­thronized in the empire. These are his expresse wordes; Carolus imperator &c. Charles the emperour, when the em­perours of Constantinople had indignation against him, for the name of emperour giuen him by the Romanes; suffered them with great patience and magnanimitie: And because he was afraid of their mightie power, with often ambassades hee procured them to bee his deare friends: yet our Iesuite Bellarmine would haue vs to be­leeue, that the emperours of Constantinople did freelie graunt, that the Pope and the Romanes had full right to translate the empire; but their owne deare friend (as we see heere,) affirmeth the contrary for a truth. Yea, both Bl [...]ndus and Platina affirme very constantly,Vide Ar. Pon­iac. fol. 122. that Charles did agree first with the empresse Irene, and afterwith the emperour Nicephorus, that he with their fauours might rule ouer the VVest.

The seuenth step, was the constitution of the ele­ctors of the future emperour.Vide Phillip. Bergemens. p. 277. For Gregorie the fift being a Germane borne, and a neere kinsman to Otho the empe­rour at that time, did by his fauour and free graunt, ap­point seuen electors of the empire for euer.Antoninus 3. par. tit. 22. cap. 5. §. 13. viz. the arch­bishop of Mentz, the archbishop of Treuerse, the arch­bishop of Colen, the marques of Brandenburgh, the coun­tie [Page 15] Palatine, the duke of Saxonie, and the king of Bohe­mia. This goodly constitution was enacted by the Pope and emperour,A. D. 994. (being both of them not onely Germanes but also kinsmen) that the empire might be established in their posteritie, and their blood thereby aduanced for euer.

The eight and highest step of this ladder, did reach vp euen to the highest heauen, and to the very throne of our Lord Iesus. For the Pope hauing now enlarged his soueraigntie, by little and little, from steppe to steppe; was neither abased nor afraid to challenge the authoritie and royall right,A. D. 1294. of both swordes throughout the christian world: for he made a flat decree for the confirmation thereof, as is euident by the extrauagant of Boniface the eight, (vnam sanctam, de maioritate & obedienta) set downe in the sixt booke of the decretals.Dest. 22. can. omnes. And as Gratianus repor­teth, Pope Nicholas taught the same doctrine: these are the expresse wordes, Christus beato Petro aeternae vitae claui­gero, terreni simul & caelestis imperij iura commisit.

Christ committed to Saint Peter that beareth the keyes of eternall life, the right both of earthly and heauenly empire. And the glosse, which the Popes parasites haue annexed to this decree,Gloss. F. caelestis. hath these very wordes; Argu­mentum quod Papa habet vtrun (que) gladium, & spiritualem & tem­poralem. An argument, that the Pope hath both the swords, aswell the spirituall as the temporall. And in the marginall note, it is there set downe, Papa habens vtrun (que) gladium transtulit imperium: the Pope hauing both swords, translated the empire. And appendix Fuldensis vnfoldeth this cursed decree, in these most plaine tearmes:

Hic Papa (Bonifacius 8.) constitutionem fecerat,Appendix Ful­densis. in quae se do­minum spiritualem & temporalem in vniuerso mundo asserebat. Vn­de requisiuit Philippum regem Franciae, vt a se regnum suum cognos­ceret, quod rex facere contempsit.

This Pope (he speaketh of Boniface the eight) made a constitution, in which he affirmed himselfe, to be both spirituall and temporall lord in the whole world. VVher­vpon [Page 16] he would haue had Philip king of France, to haue acknowledged his kingdome from him: which thing the king scorned to doe.

Since this ladder was thus framed, the Bishops of Rome haue tyrannized aboue measure in the world, and ta­king vpon them that authoritie which pertaineth to god alone, they haue disposed of kings and kingdomes, tran­slated royall diademes, tyrannized ouer mens soules, and troden all sacred soueraigntie vnder foot. For, that po­pish canons ascribe plaine diuine titles to the Pope, it can not possibly be denied, because in the Popes owne de­cretals,Gloss. lib. 1. de­cret. tit. 7. cap. 3. I find these expresse wordes; Sic (Papa) dicitur habere caeleste [...] arbitrium, & ideo etiam naturam rerum immutat, substantiam vnius rei applicando alij; & de nihilo potest aliquid fa­cere. So the Pope is said to haue celestiall arbitrement, and therefore doth he alter the nature of things, apply­ing the substantiall parts of one thing to an other; and so can make of nothing something. Thus the papists write of their Pope, and he is well pleased therewith. And yet the truth is, that as man can in some cases at some time make one thing of an other; so in all cases at all times, to make some thing of nothing, is proper to God alone.

The Popes parasites write thus of his power in gene­rall;Gersō. de potest. eccl [...]s. consider. 12. part. 3. Sicut non est potestas nisia deo, sic nec aliqua temporalis vel ecclesiastica, imperialis vel regalis, nisi à Papa; in cuius foemore scripsit Christus, rex regum, dominus dominantium. Like as there is no power but of God, so is there neither any temporall nor ecclesiasticall, neither imperiall nor regall, but of the Pope; in whose thigh Christ hath written, the King of kings, and Lord of lords. Loe here gentle reader, two things are proper to God alone; the one, to be King of kings, and Lord of lords; the other, to be the author of all power: both which you see here ascribed to the Pope.

The Pope himselfe from his owne pen,Greg. 9. libr. 1. decr. tit. 33. cap. 6. Gregorie the ninth, deliuereth vs this doctrine, Ad firmamentum coeli, hoc est, vniuers alis ecclesiae, fecit deus duo magna luminaria, id est, duas [Page 17] instituit dignitates, quae sunt pontificalis authoritas, & regalis potestas sequitur; vt quanta est inter solem & lunam, tanta inter pontifices & reges differentia cognoscatur. To the firmament of heauen, that is, of the vniuersall church, God made two lights, pontificall authoritie, and power royall: that we may know there is asmuch difference between Popes and kings, as there is betweene the sunne & the moone. The glosse setteth downe precisely,Gloss. ibid. how farre a king is inferiour to a Pope, that is, to any bishop of Rome, in these words; Restat, vt pontificalis dignitas, quadragesies sep­ties sit maior regali dignitate. It remaineth, that the dignitie of the Pope, is fourtie times seuen times greater than the power of the king.

Now touching the kissing of the Popes feete, I an­swere that some Christian kings and emperours vpon a blind zeale not grounded in knowledge, humbling them­selues to the Bishop of Rome, and yeelding vp their so­ueraigne rights to him, opened the window to all anti­christian tyrannie. For in short time after, (as is alreadie prooued) the Romish bishops became so lordly and inso­lent, that they tooke vpon them to depose the emperors, to translate their empires, and to dispose at their plea­sures of their royall scepters and regalities. Much more might be said in this matter, but for that the Pope hath made it sacriledge to dispute of this, I will here onely tell thee gentle reader,Sigebert. in an­no, 1088. what the Popes deere frier Sigebertus hath written of his holines. These are his expresse words; Vt pace omnium honorum dixerim, haec sola nouitas, non dicam haere­sis, nondum in mundo emerserat, vt sacerdotes illius, qui regnarefa­cit hypocritā propter peccata populi, doceant populum quod malis re­gibus nullam debeant subiectionem, & licet ei sacramentum fideli­tatis fecerint, nullam tamen debeant fidelitatem, nec periuri dican­tur, qui contra regem senserint; imo qui regi pa [...]erit, pro excommu­nicato habeatur; qui contra regem fecerit, noxa iniustitiae & per­iuris absoluatur. To speake by the fauour of all good men, this sole noueltie, I wil not say heresie, was not yet known in the world; that his priests who maketh an hypocrite [Page 18] to reigne for the sinnes of the people, should teach the people, that they owe no subiection to wicked kings; and that although they haue taken the oth of fealtie, yet doe they owe them no allegeance, neither are they per­iured that thinke ill against the king: yea, he that obey­eth the king, is this day reputed an excommunicate per­son; and he that taketh part against the king, is absolued from the crime of iniustice and periurie.

This is our very case (gentle reader) this day in Eng­land, so liuely painted out in best beseeming coulours, as if the writer had bene liuing euen now amongst vs. So then, wee haue to obserue here for our instruction, That the Popes owne monkes and friers haue thought as ill of the Popes dealings in former times, as we thinke of his procedings in these latter dayes: As also, That po­pish religon hath alwaies bene condemned,Answere ô pa­pists if you can: if not, repent for shame. euen of great learned papists that liued in the Popes Church. VVhere­of none can be ignorant, that will seriously peruse my bookes of Motiues and Suruey. And this shall suffice for the first article: to which (if their hearts doe not faint them, or their consciences condemne them) the papists will frame some answere vn­doubtedly.

The second Article, touching the erroneous doctrine of the Popish masse.

The first member. Of the impossibilitie of their supposed reall presence.

AQuinas, the Iesuit Bellarmine, the councell of Trent, Melchior Canus, Iosephus Angles, and the rest of the Romish brood, hold constantlie as an article of their christian faith,Conc. tri. sess. 3. can. 1. Aquin. 3. p. q. 76. ar. 1. Ioseph. Angles, in 4. 1. p. q. 4. de euchar. Bellar. de euch. libr. 1. cap. 2. col. 468. B. That the true, organicall and na­turall bodie of Christ Iesus, which was borne of the Virgin Marie, which was crucified and nayled on the crosse, which rose againe the third day from death, and is circumscriptiuely and locally in heauen; is also truelie, really, and substan­tially, vnder the forme of bread and wine, in the sacrifice of the popish masse, But this is impossible, as which im­plieth flat contradiction; and consequently, late romish religion consisteth of impossibilities, falshoodes, and con­tradictions. The doubt hereof is onely in the assumpti­on; for proofe whereof, I set downe this supposall with our Cardinall Bellarmine, viz. That we are not bound to be­leeue any thing which implyeth contradiction.Bellarm. de eu­char. lib. 3. cap. 19. col. 748. A. And be­cause I will proceed sincerely, yee shall heare his owne words: thus doth he write; Ne (que) fides nostra ad id nos obligat, vt ea defendamus, quae euidenter implicant contradictionem. Neither doth our faith bind vs so, that wee must defend those things which implie euident contradiction. But so it is, that the popish imaginarie being of Christs bodie in a [Page 20] little round cake, implieth in it selfe euident contradicti­on, and cannot possibly be brought to passe. For exam­ple, no power vpon earth or in heauen can bring to passe that a bodie being three cubits long and one cubit broad, remaining still so long and so broad, shall be contained in another bodie of two cubits length, and halfe a cubite breadth. The reason hereof is euident, because so to con­taine and be so contained, implieth flat contradiction. And this is the case now in controuersie, concerning Christs supposed being in the round popish cake.Aquin, 3. p. q. 76 ar. 4. contra. For if Christs naturall and organicall bodie be there, as popish faith auoucheth: then must the papists beleeue euident contradictions, contrarie to Iesuit Bellarmines resolution; yea, contrarie to all power, all Logicke, all reason. All the papists in England are not able to solue this reason. I challenge them all, and aduise them to consult together, and to craue helpe of their friends elswhere, and then to let me haue their speedie answere hereunto.

Cardinall Caietane affirmeth boldly,Apud Ioseph. Angles, in 4. sect 1. p. pag. 144. that no text in the whole Gospell doth prooue effectually, and conuince the reader to vnderstand these words properly (This is my bodie.) For which respect frier Ioseph aduiseth grauely, to read their Cardinall (caute) warily.

Aquinas affirmeth constantly,Aquinas, in 4. s. d. 10. q. 1. art. 1. Corpus Christi non esse in pluribus locis simul, secundū proprias dimensiones; that Christs bo­die is not in many places at once, according to the pro­per dimensions thereof: whose assertion is my flat posi­tion. For Christs naturall bodie cannot be without those dimensions which naturally pertaine vnto it. Durandus holdeth the very same opinion.

S. Austine saith plainely,Aug. epist. ad Dardan. in fine. that Christs true bodie can be but in one onely place of heauen. Vbi totum presentem esse non dubites tanquam deum, & in codem templo dei esse tanquam in­habitantem deum, & in loco aliquo coeli propter veri corporis modum. Thou must not doubt (saith S. Austen) that Christ is wholly present euery where as God, and in the same tem­ple of God, as God inhabiting it, and in some one place [Page 21] of heauen, for the manner of a true bodie. Lo, this graue father telleth vs, that Christ as God is euery where; but yet in respect of his true bodie, he is onely in heauen, and in some certaine place of heauen. Only in heauen, because the Scripture saith, That he shall be there till the worlds end, in some certaine place of heauen, to de­clare the nature and veritie of a true bodie indeed. So then, if he were present as the papists would haue him, his bodie should lose the nature and veritie of a true bo­die indeed.

Againe in another place S. Austen hath these words;Aug. de consecr. dist. 2. can. pri­ma quidem. Donec seculum finiatur, sursum est dominus, sed tamen etiam hic no­biscum est veritas domini; corpus enim in quo resurrexit, in vno loco esse oportet; veritas autem eius vbique diffusa est. Our Lord is aboue vntill the worlds end, but yet his truth is with vs here; for the bodie of our Lord, wherein he rose againe, must needs be in one place; but this truth is diffused euery where.

Againe,Aug. cont. Faust. lib. 20. ca. 11. to. 6 the same S. Austen writing against Faustus the Manichee, hath these expresse words: Secundum presenti­am corporalem, simul & in Sole, & in Luna, & in cruce esse non posset. According to his corporall presence, it was not pos­sible for him to be both in the Sunne, and in the Moone, and on the crosse, at one and the same time. O papists, answere if you can; if not, recant for shame.

The second Member. Of the Sacrifice of the Popish Masse.

THe Papists teach and beleeue as an article of Chri­stian faith,Conc. trid. sess. 6. can. 2. die 17. sep. Bellar. li. 1. ca. 12 Aq in. 3. p q. 82 art. 4. That in their masse Christs true and reall bodie is truly and really sacrificed to God the fa­ther, vnder the forme of bread, as also his true and reall bloud vnder the forme of wine. Yet this implieth horri­ble impietie and brutish crueltie, as shall be prooued: and consequently, popish Masse is to be abhorred.

[Page 22] First, where the Apostle telleth vs, that Christ rising againe from the dead, henceforth dieth no more, because death hath no more dominion ouer him; the papists tell vs a contrarie tale, that Christ dieth euery day, nay, a thousand times a day, in the daily sacrifice of their masse: for with them all priests (the Pope, Cardinals, and some others excepted) doe ordinarily say masse euery day, and three masses vpon euery Christmas day. VVhich being so, and three hundred Iesuits and seminarie priests being this day in England and Scotland, as the Iesuites tell vs; an huge multitude of masses must be said daily in these realmes, and many times must Christ be put to death, so farre forth as in them lieth, though they pretend to ho­nour him thereby.

For,Note this rea­son. as Cardinall Bellarmine graunteth freely, a sacrifice implieth intrinsecally, the consumption of the thing that is sacrificed. I will not auouch any vntruth vpon any man (gentle reader) these are his owne words: Sacrificium enim preter oblationem, requirit mutationem, & consumptionem rei quae offertur. Beller. de missa, lib. 1. cap. 2. col. 957. For, saith Bellarmine, a sacrifice besides the ob­lation requires an alteration and a consumption of the thing which is offered.

Againe,Vbi sup. col. 697. Bellarmine in another place telleth vs, that the bodie and bloud of Christ are offered in the masse, verè & propriè, truly and properly, vnder the formes of bread and wine.

Againe,Vbi sup. col. 1015. Bellarmine saith in another place, that flesh and bloud are not fit for meat, nisi prius animal moriatur, vnlesse the beast first die (and be slaine.)

Againe,Bellar. de missa. lib. 1. cap. vlt. the same Bellarmine teacheth the same doctrin, yet more plainely in another place. Thus doth he write: Sacrificium enim verum & reale, veram & realem occisionem exi­git, quando in occisione ponitur essentia sacrificij. For a true and reall sacrifice requireth a true and reall killing, seeing that the essence of the sacrifice consisteth in the killing thereof.Hebr. 9. ver. 17, 25, 26, 27, 28. And in very deed, this is that constant doctrine which S. Paule doth inculcate to the Hebrewes.

[Page 23] So then, we see it cleare and euident by popish faith and doctrine, that Iesus Christ our sweet redeemer, must first be killed, then offered, lastly torne and consumed by the teeth of the sacrificing masse-priest; or els the popish masse cannot be perfect, as their most perfect doctor tel­leth vs.

For confirmation of this popish doctrine, it is a con­stant position and generally receiued axiome in the po­pish church, that by vertue of their consecratorie words, Christs bodie is put apart from his bloud, and his bloud apart from his bodie; and so Christ is there slaine by force of their consecration, though he still liue indeed, because the priests words haue not so much force as they imagin. You shall heare Bellarmines owne words;Bellar. de missa, lib. 1. cap. 12. col. 1015. a. Nam inprimis ideo in coena seorsim consecratur corpus, & seorsim sanguis, vt intelliga­mus presentiam corporis & sanguinis in coena, esse ad modum occisi & mortui corporis. For first, therfore is the bodie consecrate apart in the supper, and the bloud asunder, that we may vnderstand the presence of the bodie and bloud in the supper, to be there after the manner of a bodie slaine and dead. These are his words, and this which he thus deli­uereth, is the constant doctrine of the Popish Church. VVhereupon it followeth of necessitie, that if any papist should haue said masse, in triduo mortis Christi, during Christs death; then Christs bodie by vertue there of should haue been dead in one place, and his bloud in another place: for otherwise, Christ should haue been both quicke and dead at once, which implieth contradiction. Aquinas graunteth this illation, these are his words: Ideo si in illo tri­duo mortis fuisset hoc sacramentum celebratum, Aquin. 3. p. q. 76. ar. 1. non fuisset ibi ani­ma Christi. Therefore during Christs death, if this sacra­ment had been celebrated, the soule of Christ should not haue been in it.

Secondly, if this popish kind of doctrine were true, these absurdities and grosse impieties must perforce fol­low hereupon, viz. that Christ the night before he was cru­cified, was both sitting at the table, and borne in his own [Page 24] hands, both liuing and dead, both visible and inuisible, both long and short, both broad and narrow, both light and heauie; that he was a sacrifice for our sinnes, before he died for our sinnes; that his sacrifice was either vnper­fect in the former oblation in his last supper, or els that it was needlesse in his bitter immolation vpon the altar of the crosse.Hebr. 9. v. 27. For as the Apostle telleth vs, Christ was not to offer himselfe often, as the high priest did, but once to the destruction of sinne, by the sacrifice of himselfe. These are his words, as the papists (our English Rhemists I meane) haue put them downe; and as it is appointed to men to die once, and after this the iudgement: so also Christ was offered once, to exhaust the sinnes of many. Loe, Christ died but once; and that one oblation was sufficient to take away all sinnes in the world. The word (exhaust) which the Rhemists vse, doth significantly ex­presse so much. But the words of S. Paul in another place are most manifest, and doe plainely conuince this truth: In the which will (saith S. Paule) we are made holy,Hebr. 10. v. 10. euen by the offering of the bodie of Iesus Christ once for all. Againe thus: But this man,ibid. v. 12. after he hath offered one sa­crifice for sinnes, is set downe for euer on the right hand of God.ibid. v. 14. Againe in these words: For with one offering hath he made perfect for euer them that are sanctified. Loe, gentle reader, Christ, saith Christs apostle, made but one oblation; Christ, say the papists, hath made many, and still maketh moe oblations. Christ, saith Christs Apo­stle, died but once on the crosse; Christ, say the papists, dieth euery day in the masse. Christ, saith Christ apostle, made perfect, finished, and consummated mans redemp­tion, with one onely sacrifice. Christ, say the papists, doth perfect and consummate his, with the daily sacrifice of the masse. Now, whether Christs apostle, or our papists be of better credit, let the indifferent reader iudge.

Thirdly, the cup is the new testament in my bloud saith Christ,Luke, 22. v. 20. which is shed for you. But a testament is not of force without the death of the testator,Hebr. 9. v. 17. as S. Paul tea­cheth [Page 25] vs. And consequently either Christs bodie was not really offered in his supper, or at least it was a sacrifice of no force, value, or efficacie at all; for that it was not yet ratified by the death of the testator. Hereupon it follow­eth of necessitie,Luke 22. v. 20. that when Christ saith in S. Luke, This cup is the new testament in my bloud:Math. 26. v. 28. and in S. Matthew, This is my bloud of the new Testament: the sence is all one, most plaine, and cleare, viz. that the cup is a sacra­ment of the bloud of Christ, and of the new Testament confirmed thereby; but indeed is no more really the bloud of Christ it selfe, than it is really the new testament it selfe. For the expresse mention of remission of sinnes, is referred to the bloud of Christ shed vpon the crosse, and not to the sacrament of his bloud; seeing his bloud was not shed in his supper, but in his bitter passion.

Fourthly, the Apostle saith flatly, [...], there is not henceforth any oblation for sinne.Hebr. 10. 18. But if Saint Paule say truly, that there is no oblation for sinne, after Christs death on the crosse; then doubtlesse the papists must needs say falsely, that they haue a daily propitiato­rie sacrifice in their popish masse. Neither will it serue their turne to answere, that it is the selfesame sacrifice of the crosse, but offered in another manner; for if that were true, then should their masse-sacrifice be of infinit value: which for all that, no papist dareth auouch. Nay, Bellarmine saith in plaine tearmes: Valor sacrificij missae finitus est. Bellar. de missa, lib. 2. cap. 4. col. 1076. The value or worth of the masse, is finit, not infinit. And yet, if the value of the masse be not infinit, then doubtlesse, that sacrifice cannot be the sonne of God, for he is of infinit power, of infinit maiestie, of infinit value. Yea, whosoeuer denieth Christs bodie and bloud, subsi­sting in the person of God by hypostaticall vnion, to be of infinit value, he is become a flat Arrian, beleeuing Christ to be pure man, and not God. And consequently, the papists, howsoeuer they thinke or speake of their masse, yet in making it a sacrifice, they must perforce be blasphemous against the sonne of God. Again, Bellarmine [Page 26] confesseth against himselfe vnawares, and against an arti­cle of popish faith, That their popish masse is not verè & propriè, Bellar. de missa, lib. 2. cap 4. col. 1076. truly and properly propitiarie: Quod Christus nunc immortalis, nec mereri, nec satisfacere potest. Because, saith Bellarmine, Christ now being immortall, can neither merit nor satisfie. But I am well assured, that their holy late councell of Trent teacheth otherwise. These are the words: Et quoniam in diuino hoc sacrificio, quod in missa peragi­tur, Conc. trid. sess. 6. can. 2. die 17. sep. idem ille Christus continetur, & incruentè immolatur, qui in ara crucis semel seipsum cruentè obtulit, docet sanctasynodus sacrificium istud verè propitiatorium esse. And because in this diuine sa­crifice which is made in the masse, that same Christ is con­tained, and offered vnbloudily, who on the altar of the crosse once offered himselfe bloudily, the holy councell teacheth it to be a propitiatorie sacrifice truly & indeed. Loe, how the papists say and vnsay: one while it is truly a propitiatorie sacrifice; another while it cannot truly be so called. VVell, the Pope hath allowed Bellarmines do­ctrine, and he hath also allowed the Councell; and yet wise men can see how they flatly disagree, and that in the highest point of their melodie.

Fiftly, the Popes owne decrees doe seale vp this truth against the Pope, these are his words: Sicut ergo coelestis pa­nis qui Christi caro est, De consecrat. dist. 2. can. hoc est suo modo vocatur corpus Christi, cum reuera sit sacramentum corporis Christi, illius viz. quod visibile, quod pal­pabile, mortale, in cruce positum est; vocatur (que) ipso immolatio carnis quae sacerdotis manibus fit, Christi passio, mors, crucifixio; non rei veritate, sed significante mysterio; sic sacrum fidei quod baptismus intelligitur, fides est. As therefore the heauenly bread, which is the flesh of Christ, is after it manner called the bodie of Christ, when indeed it is the sacrament of Christs bodie, of that bodie which is visible, which is palpable, mortall, and nailed on the crosse: and that oblation of flesh which is made by the hands of the priest, is called Christs passion, death, crucifixion, not in the truth of the thing, but in a mysterie, which signifieth the thing: so the sacrament of faith, by which baptisme is vnderstood, is faith.

[Page 27] Thus saith the text. Let vs now heare their own glosse vpon the same text, these are the expresse words: Coeleste sacramentum quod verè representat Christi carnem, dicitur corpus Christi, sed improprie, vnde dicitur suo modo, sed non rei veritate, sed significate mysterio: vt sit sensus, vocatur Christi corpus, id est, significatur. The heauenly sacrament which representeth Christs flesh truly, is called the bodie of Christ, but vnpro­perly, wherefore it is said, suo modo, after it manner, but not in the truth of the thing, but in the mysterie of the thing signified: that this may be the sence, it is called Christs bodie, that is to say, it signifieth his bodie.

Out of these golden words, deliuered as God would haue it by the pens of papists, to the confusion of all pa­pists, I note first, that the holy and blessed bread of the Eu­charist or Lords supper, is called the bodie of Christ. Se­condly, that it is also called the passion & death of Christ. Thirdly, that it is not Christs bodie truly, properly, and in the truth of the thing. Fourthly, that it is Christs body, as the sacrament of baptisme is faith. Fifthly, that it is not Christs bodie in truth, but in signification. Sixtly, that it is only called Christs bodie, because it is the sacrament of his body; as baptisme is called faith, being only the sacrament of faith. Seuenthly, that it is Christs bodie, impropriè, suo mo­do, significat [...] mysterio; improperly, after a sort, in the myste­rie of the thing, signified: which words must be well re­membred and marked. Lastly, that it is said negatiuely, non rei veritate: it is not Christs bodie, in truth, in deed, or in the veritie of the thing. These words are the very vpshot of the controuersie, they can admit no solution. For if Christs bodie were in the sacrament really and substanti­ally, with bodie, flesh, bloud, sinews, bones, and quantitie, as the papists say and beleeue; then doubtlesse he should be there in rei veritate, in the truth of the thing, euen in that true bodie which was borne of the blessed virgin, the true mother of true God and true man. Answere papists, if ye can, or els come home, and yeeld to the truth for shame.

The third Member. Of the barbarous and plaine villanous proceeding against Berenga­rius, for deniall of the abouenamed popish sacrifice.

POpish decrees tell vs a long tale of one Berengarius, sometime deacon of a church in Gaunt, who held a doctrine surely grounded vpon the holy scriptures, but wholie opposite to the late popish faith; viz. That the bread and wine in the holy Eucharist,De consecrat. dist. 2. can. Ego Berengarius. after Christs words vttered, which they call consecration; are onely the sa­crament, and not the true bodie and blood of our Lord Iesus Christ; and that they cannot sensuallie or sensibly, (for so their owne word sensualiter signifieth) bee hand­led or broken with the hands of the priests, or torne with the teeth of the faithfull. For this opinion so setled vpon Gods word, as all the cursed Romish brood, are not able in truth to gainesay the same; Pope Nicholas with his Ro­mish synod, did so cruelly proceed against the sillie dea­con, as he must needs either abiure and renounce the truth, or else betake himselfe to be burnt with popish fire and faggot out of hand. In regard whereof, the poore deacon ouercome with humane frailtie, yeelded at least in shew of wordes, to their most wicked, cruell, and very barbarous, or rather villanous suggestion. Then the Pope and Councell set downe the forme of words, which he should pronounce, the summe whereof I haue alrea­die alleaged: who as list may read the words at large, in the place quoted in the margent. I omit the wordes, be­cause they are long and tedious: onely I wish the reader to obserue seriously with me, (for this reason can neuer be answered till the worlds end) that it is an article of popish faith, (oh horrible blasphemie) That the true and reall body of the sonne of God, which was borne of the vigin Marie, and sitteth at the right hand of God the fa­ther omnipotent and all sufficient, is torne in pieces with [Page 29] the teeth of the faithfull, and broken asunder with the hands of the priest, in their idolatrous masse. For these are the words of the popish synod; Manibus sacerdotum frangi, & fidelium dentibus atteri. Which wordes are so fully farced with blasphemie, and repugnant to the truth, that neither Melchior Canus, nor the popish glosse, nor Bel­larmine, can tell how to shuffle vp the same, but with shame inough, they passe it ouer as they can. Bellarmine, who is as it were the Popes owne mouth, writeth in this manner;Bellar. de con. lib. 2. cap. 8. d. Respondeo, nunquam fuisse quaestionem, an Christi corpus vere vt est in se, frangeretur manibus, & dentibus tereretur; certum enim est, & semper fuit, Christi corpus incorruptibile nunc existens, non posse frangi & teri, nisi in signo siue sacramento: ita vt dicatur frangi ac teri, cum signum eius, id est, species panis frangitur, & teritur. I answere (saith the Iesuite) that question was ne­uer made, if the body of Christ as it is in it selfe, were true­ly broken with hands, and torne with teeth; for it is and and euer was certaine and sure, that Christs bodie being now incorruptible, cannot be broken and torne, saue on­ly in a signe or sacrament; so as it may be said to be bro­ken and torne, when the signe thereof, that is to say, the forme of bread is broken and torne.

Out of these words I note first, that by the Popes owne doctrine, (for the Iesuites doctrine is the doctrine of the Pope, seeing the Pope hath approoued it,) Christs bo­die cannot be broken or torne, truely and indeede. I note secondly, that the Pope and his Councell decreed the contrarie doctrine, and that as an article of popish faith; when they compelled Berengarius, to confesse it with his mouth, and to beleeue it with his heart, and did also publish the same, per vrbes Italiae, Germaniae, & Galliae, through the cities of Italie, France, and Germanie: for so saith the decree, Ego Berengarius. I note thirdly, that it is truely said, Christs bodie is broken; because the forme of the bread is broken, as popish doctrine teacheth vs. For we see here, that this is all that the papists can say for themselues: and vpon this strong foundation, and in­uincible [Page 30] bulwarke, I inferre this golden and euident co­rollarie; viz. That if it be true to say, Christs bodie is bro­ken and torne, because the signe of his bodie is broken and torne; then truely may wee say, and truelie doe we say, that Christs bodie is in the Eucharist, because the signe of his bodie is there, because the sacrament of his bodie is there, because the representation of his bodie is there. And much more truly might Christ himselfe say, This is my bodie, when he gaue the signe and sacrament of his bodie. I note fourthly, that it is the constant do­ctrine of the church of England (which also many other reformed churches approoue therein) that Christs bodie is receiued, broken, torne, and consumed with mouth and teeth, figuratiuely, significantly, mystically, sacramental­ly. And consequently, if the papists would be iudged by this doctrine, which by the pen of the Iesuit Bellarmine they here deliuer, the controuersie would soone be at an end. But I must needs tell the reader, what the Popes owne glosse teacheth vs:Gloss. de Cons. dist. 2. cap. ego Berengarius. it is singular and worthie to be noted, these are the words: Nisi sane intelligas verba Beren­garij, in maiorem incides haeresim, quam ipse habuit; & ideo om­nia referas species ipsas, nam de corpore Christi partes non faci­mus. Vnlesse thou vnderstand the words of Berengarius soundly, thou shalt fall into a greater heresie than he had; and therefore thou must referre all things to the formes, for of Christs bodie we make no parts. Marke these words, gentle reader, for they are important: They teach vs plainly, that it is a most dangerous thing to relie vpon popish decrees, euen then when they pretend to re­forme the church, and to condemne heresies.

S. Austen confirmeth the doctrine, which the Pope compelled Bellengarius to abiure,August. in Ioan. tract. [...]9. and that in many places of his workes; one onely assertion I will now set downe. These are his words: Illi manducabant panem dominum; ille, panem domini contra dominum. They (the other Apostles) are the bread, that was the Lord, he (Iudas) ate (not our Lord, but) the bread of our Lord, against our Lord.

[Page 31] Note these words, gentle reader, and marke them se­riously. S. Austen telleth vs, that the bread which the o­ther Apostles ate, was our Lord; yet that which Iudas re­ceiued, was but the bread of the Lord. This assertion con­foundeth the papists. For, if our Lord and maker be pre­sent really, in flesh, bloud, and bone, vnder the accidents of bread; and that so long as the same accidents remaine vncorrupt, as the popish faith holdeth: then doubtlesse Iudas should haue receiued his redeemer; thē perforce Iu­das should also haue receiued panē dominū thē Iudas could not by any possibilitie haue barely receiued panem domini, which yet S. Austen affirmeth most constantly. For first, if it were true, that after popish supposed consecration, the substance of bread were transubstantiated into Christs naturall bodie, as it truly consisteth of flesh, bloud, and bone: and againe, if it were also true, that the selfesame bodie remained vnder the forme of bread, vntill it were corrupted, then let all the papists in England, with the best aduise of all their adherents and brother papists els­where in Europe, tell me how Iudas could receiue (panem domini) the bread of our Lord, and not (panem dominum) the bread which is the Lord, as S. Austen plainely auou­cheth, that is, how Iudas could receiue the forme, with the flesh, bloud, and bones, of Christs organicall and naturall bodie hidden vnder the same; and for all that, not re­ceiue Christ himselfe, and panem dominum, as the other A­postles did. Let them I say tell me this, and I herewith pro­mise to subscribe, and neuer henceforth to write against them or any part of their popish doctrine. If they will not this doe, because they cannot (for if they can doe it, all the world must thinke they will doe it, for their owne credit and the credit of their cause) then doubtlesse, if the feare of God be before their eyes, they will acknowledge the truth, and with open mouth confesse the same. Corde enim creditur ad iustitiam, & ore confessio fit ad salutem. Rom. 10. v. 10.

The fourth Member. Of the apparent con­tradictions in the Popish masse.

FIrst, the papists tell vs, that Christs bodie in their masse, is the selfesame bodie that was nailed on the crosse. And withall they tell vs, that it is a figure of the same bodie. That it is a flat contradiction, their owne deare Cardinall Bellarmine shall tell them: These are his words:Bellar. de Eu­charist. lib. 1. cap. 3. col. 474. Figurae necessario, inferiores esse debent rebus figuratis. Figures of necessitie must be inferiour to the things figu­red by them. And this doctrine is most true indeed, as S. Paul discourseth to the Hebrewes.Hebr. 10. Now would I know of the papists, if they can say ought for the life of their masse, how Christs bodie in the masse being the selfesame bodie numero, as they teach and beleeue, can be inferiour to Christs bodie on the crosse; how it can be both inferi­our and superiour to it selfe; how it can be both of grea­ter and lesser value than Christs body on the crosse, being euer the selfesame bodie on the crosse.

Secondly, the papists tell vs, that Christs naturall bo­die is contained in a little round cake, or vnder the acci­dents and forme of bread. Now would I know of the same papists, how the bigger can be contained of the lesser, how a bushell can be couched in a pecke, how a great oxe can be closed vp in a little calues bellie. For all these im­plie euident contradiction.

Thirdly,Bellar. de Eu­charist. lib. 1. cap. 2. col. 472. the papists tell vs, that Christs bodie is truly broken. For these are the Iesuit Bellarmines words: Deni (que) in concilio Romano sub Nicolao 2. compulsus est Berengarius confi­teri, Christi corpus sensualiter sacerdotum manibus tangi & frangi. Finally, in a councell at Rome vnder Pope Nicholas the second, Berengarius was compelled to confesse, that Christs bodie is sensuallie touched and broken with the priests hands.

Now would I know, how it can be true, that Christs [Page 33] bodie is broken, and also true, that it is not broken, spea­king of the same bodie at the same time. Let all papists answere, and tell me if they can, how it implieth not con­tradiction. For to say, that not the bodie but the accident of bread is broken, is too too childish and friuolous. The reason is euident, because Berengarius (ô cruell impietie) was compelled to confesse, that Christs bodie was sensu­ally broken.

Fourthly, the papists tell vs, that the pronouncing of these words by a priest (This is my bodie) do make Christs bodie present in their masse, and also in other places: in­somuch (marke well gentle reader what I say) that if a popish priest come into a great market place, where there is great store of wheat bread, though a thousand or moe loaues in number, and there looking on the bread, shall pronounce the said words, with intention to conse­crate, then forthwith euery loafe is God almightie, and the people must adore the same. Triall hereof was once made de facto in Italie, as my selfe being in Rome, heard from the mouth of a Iesuit. For, as the Iesuit reported, a priest being degraded and designed to die, as he passed in the street by a bakers house, beheld a great quantitie of wheat bread, and recited these words (Hoc est corpus meum) and told the people, that he had consecrated the said bread.This is a great wonderment, and extreame popish sollie. VVhereupon consultation was had out of hand among the learned, and sentence giuen, that euery loafe was God almightie: and the bread was caried away with great solemnitie, reuerence, and such adoration as was due to the sonne of the euerliuing God. Now would I know, when the priest hath pronounced three of the said words, viz. (hoc est corpus.) what is become of the bread a­fore him. For if they answere, that it is Christs bodie: then will it follow to their shame, that one of the words of their consecration is of no force; which to die for it, the papists may not admit. If they say, that a part of Christs bodie is then wrought really, by vertue of the said words, then will it follow to their greater shame, that Christs bo­die [Page 34] is really torne in pieces, by force of their bloodie and most cruell masse. If they say, that nought is indeed ef­fected, vntill the last sillable of the last word be pronoun­ced; then will it follow to their confusion, that of foure words wherein consisteth their whole consecration, three are of no vertue, force, or efficacie, but stand as cyphers to fill vp the place, and to make a shew of that which is not.

Fiftlie, Durandus telleth vs, that onely the forme of bread is chaunged, and that the matter of bread remai­neth still in the Eucharist. Rupertus the popish Abbot hol­deth, that the bread is vnited hypostaticallie to the son of God. Caietanus, Henricus, and Capreolus, are of another opi­nion: Iohanncs Parisiensis held also that the bread was as­sumpted, but in a different manner from the opinion of Rupertus. Another opinion, affirmeth the annihilation of the bread: but the Iesuit Bellarmine holdeth with their Councell of Trent, that the bread is transubstantiated in­to the bodie of Christ.

Sixtly, the papists tell vs, that when the priest is at masse, then all spectators must adore that which he hol­deth ouer his head, and constantly beleeue it to be their maker and redeemer of the world: and if any hold con­trarie opinion, or teach the contrarie doctrine, that per­son must be burnt with fire and faggot for his paines. But yet for all this the popish faith telleth vs, that if either the priest want intention to consecrate, (which often chaun­ceth, or at least may chaunce, by reason of wandering imaginations) or of purpose meaneth not to consecrate, or of negligence omitteth, or miscalleth any word of con­secration; then by popish doctrine, faith, and religion, the thing adored for God almightie, is but pure bakers bread; and consequently, the adorers there of become idolaters, worshipping a piece of bread for the euerli­uing God.

Seuenthly, the papists tell vs, that many priests are ap­pointed at once to pronounce the words of consecration, [Page 35] in the Romish Church Lateran when they are made priests. But they cannot tell vs, how many gods, or how many times God is made in one and the same piece or cake of bread, in and at that masse of the newlie made priests. For they are all appointed to consecrate, they doe all pronounce the wordes, they are all bounden to haue intention, and they all haue the fit and requisite matter to worke vpon: but when the principall actor and chiefe agent, to wit, the bishop, is at the last syllable; then some of the rest be in the middest, some toward the end, some in one place, some in an other, neuer one iumping with other in that instant, in which they should their bread-god make. For of this dreadfull mysterie, there are three solemne dissonant opinions.Ioseph. Angl. in 4. s. pag. 180. Pope Innocentius holdeth, that they all doe consecrate: Durandus auouch­eth, that that priest onely consecrateth, which with grea­test speed first commeth to the end: but Cardinall Caie­tanus hath a different consideration. Now would I know, how these so different popish opinions, in a matter of so great importance, can be reconciled and salued from contradiction. Answere papists if you can, or else relent and yeeld to the truth for shame. [Page 34] [...] [Page 35] [...]

The third Article. Of po­pish dispensations.

ANtoninus sometime archbishop of Florence, comming as ambassa­dour from the Pope, telleth vs, if wee may beleeue him,Antoninus, 3. par tit. 22. cap. 5. §. 8. that the Pope is Christs vicar vpon earth, and hath equall power with God almightie. These are his owne ex­presse words; Cum autē vicarius Chri­sti sit Papa, nullus potest seipsum subtrahere ab obedientia eius de iure, sicut nullus de iure potest se subtrahere abobedientia Dei. Et sicut recepit Christus a patre ducatum & sceptrum ecclesiae gentium ex Is­rael egrediens, super omnem principatum & potestatem, & super omne quodcun (que) est, vt ei genua cuncta curuentur; sic ipse Petro & successoribus eius, plenissimam potestatem commisit. For seeing the Pope is the vicar of Christ, none can lawfully with­draw himselfe from his obedience, as none can lawfully withdraw himselfe from Gods obedience. And as Christ receiued of his father, the dukedome and scepter of the Church of the gentiles arising of Israel, ouer all principali­tie and power, and aboue euery thing that hath being, that to him euery knee may bend: euen so Christ hath committed most full power to Peter and his successors.

The famous popish frier,Aug. de Anch. in summa, pag. 152. Augustinus de Ancona, in that booke which he dedicated to Pope Iohn the twelft of that name, singeth the same song, and affirmeth the Pope to haue the same power. These are his expresse words; (Papa) tanquam vicarius Dei filij caelestis imperatoris, iurisdictionem habet vniuersalem super omniaregna & imperia. The Pope, as he that is the vicar of the sonne of God the heauenly emperour, hath vniuersall iurisdiction ouer all kingdoms & empires.

[Page 37] Many other papists haue the like testimonies, but they are needlesse, seeing the Pope is a sufficient witnes against himselfe, hauing often reduced their assertions to actuall execution. For the Pope hath often by his wicked and execrable dispensations taken vpon him to dissolue that matrimonie which is firme and stable by Christs owne in­stitution. The former part is prooued by their learned ca­nonist Martinus Nauarrus, Nauar. in Eu­char. cap. 22. par. 21. in these expresse wordes: Diui­ditur (matrimonium) ante consummationem, per dispensationem pa­pae iusta de causa factam. Matrimonie is dissolued before consummation, by the Popes dispensation vpon iust cause graunted. Now to prooue that the Pope may this doe, Nauarre taketh it for a good ground, that the Pope hath practised the same. Thus doth he write: Quorum opinio adeo obseruatur, Nauar. vbi sup. quod etiam ter vel quater ad petitiones consilio meo ante­quam in vrbem venissem oblatas, Paulus 3. & Pius 4. per suas dis­pensationes, dissoluerant quaedam matrimonia omnino clandestina nondum consummata, in remedium animarum alioquin probabiliter periturarum. VVhose opinion (he speaketh of the Cano­nists) is so obserued, that three or foure times before my comming to Rome, vpon petitions made by mine aduise, Pope Paulus the third, and Pope Pius the fourth, with their dispensations dissolued certaine secret matrimonies not yet consummate, for the safegard of souls, which by like­lyhood would otherwise haue perished.

And another famous popish Canonist Couarruvias affir­meth,Couar. to. 1. cap. 7. par. 4. n. 13. col. 1 that Pope Paulus the fourth and Iulius the third dis­pensed in like manner. These are his words: Necme latet Paulum quartum summum ecclesiae pontificem, anno 1558. hac vsum fuisse dispensatione quibusdam excausis, quas iustissimas esse idem summus ecclesiae praesul existimauit. Idem Paulo ante Iulius tertius fecerat in eodem matrimonio, cum ecclesiae vniuersali praesiderit. Nei­ther am I ignorant, that the Pope Paul the fourth put this dis­pensation in practise, for certaine causes which the same Pope thought to be most iust. Iulius the third, when he was Pope, in the like case graunted the like dispensation. Thus we see the former part of mine assertion to be most [Page 38] sufficiently prooued, viz. that Pope taketh vpon him to dissolue lawfull and perfect matrimony. Now for proofe of the latter, viz. that wedlocke before consummation or copulation, is firme and perfect, and cannot be dissolued by the power of man: Christs owne words are a suffici­ent ground.Matth. 19. v. 7. Quod deus coniunxit, homo non separet. That which God hath conioyned, let not man put asunder. And in another place Christ hath these words:Luke, 16. v. 18. Omnis qui dimittit vxorem suam, & alteram ducit, moechatur. Euery one that put­teth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adulterie.

S. Paule vpon the same argument deliuereth the like doctrine in these words:1. Cor. 7. v. 10. His autem qui matrimonio iuncti sunt, precipio non ego sed dominus, vxorem à viro non discedere; quod si discesserit, manere innuptam, aut viro suo reconciliari, & vir vxorem non dimittat. Those that are married commaund not I, but the Lord, that the wife depart not from her husband: but if she shall depart, then to abide vnmarried, or to be reconciled to her husband.

Thus saith S. Paul, and thus saith Christ himselfe, that man and wife ioyned by Christ, must abide during life to­gether, or liue vnmarried, and not be seuered by the Popes dispensation.

And it will not helpe the Pope to say as the Iesuit Bel­larmine doth, and others with him, That Christ only spea­keth de matrimonio consummato, and that matrimonium ratum, with which the Pope dispenseth, is not de iure diuino.

For first, if matrimonium ratum were not de iure diuino, the greatest popish doctors would not denie the Popes dis­pensation therein.

Secondly, Christ speaketh absolutely, and maketh no mention of copulation or popish consummation at all.

Thirdly, matrimonie with papists is a diuine sacra­ment, and consequently, it both is perfect without car­nall copulation, and also indispensable by the power of man.Canus de locis, lib. 8. ca. p. 246. For as their owne famous doctor Melchior Canus saith: Sanctus spiritus & sacramenti gratia, per coitum non datur. The [Page 39] holy ghost and the grace of sacrament is not giuen by copulation.

Fourthly, it followeth hereupon, that matrimonie is not fully perfect in the popish church, because copulati­on followeth a good while after.

Fiftly, because it is absurd to say, that it beginneth to be a sacrament by carnall copulation, and was not a sa­crament by the priests action.

Sixtly, it followeth hereupon, that there was not per­fect matrimonie betweene Adam and Eue, for their matri­monie was in the state of innocencie, and before all car­nall copulation.

Seuenthly, because if matrimonie be not de iure diuino, euen before copulation, there is no cause why both par­ties agreeing together, may not release the bargaine, and quite dissolue the contract. For as the law saith, Quisque potest suo iuri cedere. Euery man may yeeld vp his right: which thing, all, as well Canonists as Diuines, admit for good in sponsalibus.

Eightly, it followeth hereupon,Matth. 1. that the marriage be­tweene the blessed virgin and S. Ioseph, was not perfect matrimonie: for there doubtlesse wanted carnall copu­lation; but the angell of God feared not to call her Io­sephs wife.

S. Ambrose hath these words: Non enim defloratio virginita­tis facit coniugium, Ambros. de in­stit. virg. cap. 6. sed pactio coniugalis. For not the deflouring of virginitie maketh wedlocke, but the coniugall co­uenant.

S. Austens iudgement herein is most cleere and euident.August. de con­sens. euang. lib. 2. cap. 1. to 4. These are his words: Cum igitur ipse narret, non ex concubitu Ioseph, sed ex Maria virgine natum Christum, vnde eum patrem eius appellat, nisi quia & virum Mariae rectè intelligimus sine commix­tione carnis, ipsa copulatione coniugij. VVhen therefore he telleth vs, that Christ is not borne of Iosephs copulation, but of the virgine Marie; vpon what ground doth he call him his father, but onely for that we doe rightly conceiue him to be Maries husband without the commixtion of [Page 40] flesh, by the very copulation of wedlocke.

The same father writing to Valerius, discourseth of this matter at large,Augustin. de nup [...]ijs & con­cupisc. lib. 1. cap. 11. tom. 7. and among many other notable senten­ces setteth downe these words: Quibus vero placuit, ex con­sensu ab vsu carnalis concupiscentiae in perpetuum continer, absit vt inter illos vinculum coniugale rumpatur. Secquitar neque enim falla­citer ab angelo dictum est ad Ioseph, noli timere, accipere Mariam con­iugem tuam. They that were content by mutuall consent to abstaine for euer from the vse of carnall copulation, God forbid, that betweene them should be dissolued the bond of wedlocke. For the Angell did not speak deceit­fully to Ioseph, when he willed him not to feare to take Ma­rie his wife vnto him.

Thus we see it cleare, that the pope taketh vpon him that power and authoritie which is proper to God alone: for he practically auoucheth (as I haue prooued by his owne deere doctors) that his dispensations are of force to vnmarrie and put asunder those persons whom God him­selfe hath ioyned together in holy wedlocke. And con­trariwise (as I shall prooue vnto you) he practically hath taken vpon him to ioyne in wedlocke those persons, to whom God himselfe hath forbidden marriage. I will omit knowne examples, and alledge one only not knowne to many; which as it is rare and notorious, so is it able to pro­uoke all that heare it, to exclaime against the execrable practise of the Pope.

Antoninus, Antonin. 3. p. tit. 1. cap. 11. prope fin. a man of no small credit (for he was an arch­bishop of the popish stampe, and by the Pope reported for a saint) hath these very wordes: Reperitur tamen papa Martinus quintus dispensasse cum quodam, qui contraxerat & con­summauerat matrimonium cum quadam cius germana. Neuerthe­lesse, it is knowne, that Pope Martin the fift did dispense with one who had contracted and consummate matrimo­monie with his owne naturall and full sister,Fatetur Duran­dus olim papam dispensando er­rasse. lib. 4. sent. dist. 7. q. 4. in fine. of the same father and same mother, for so much the word (Germana) doth import. Behold here, gentle reader, the excellencie of holy poperie: and if thou desirest more of such melo­die, [Page 41] thou mayest find it in my booke of Motiues. But this here is a sufficient antepast for all our English Iesuits and Iesuited popelings. None are so ignorant, but they know that onely God can giue licence to marrie a mans owne naturall sister. Answere papists if ye can, or els yeeld vnto the truth for shame.

The fourth Article. Of origi­nall concupiscence in the regenerat.

SAint Paule throughout the whole se­uenth chapter to the Romans,Rom. 7. proueth originall concupiscence in the regene­rate to be sinne. But the papists cannot abide to heare this doctrine,Psal. 58. v. 6. they stop their eares against the charmer, though he charme neuer so wisely. And why, I pray you? because forsooth it ouerthroweth their holy so supposed iustifications, their inherent purities, their mu­tuall satisfactions, their condigne merites, their pharisai­call supererogations. And yet Petrus Lombardus their fa­mous master of sentences (whose book to this day is pub­lickely read in their schooles of diuinitie) vtterly con­demneth their damnable doctrine in this point.Lombard. lib. 3. sent. dist. 19. These are his expresse words: Secundum animas vero iam redemptisumus ex parte, non ex toto; à culpa, non à poena, nec omnino à eulpa, non enim ab ea sic redempti sumus, vt non sit, sed vt non dominetur. But touching our soules, we are redeemed in part, not wholly, from the sinne, not from the paine, neither wholly from the sinne or fault. For we are not so redeemed from it, [Page 42] that it be not (in vs) but that it rule not (ouer vs.) Thus writeth the worshipfull popish master,Now must the papists per­force either re­cant their do­ctrine, or els crie fire and faggot for their chiefe master. our reuerend fa­ther Lombard: out of whose words we may gather with fa­cilitie so much as will serue our turne against the papists. For first he saith we are redeemed in part, but not in the whole. Secondly, that we are not wholly redeemed from sinne. Thirdly, he telleth vs how we are redeemed from sinne, viz. that albeit sinne still remaine in vs, yet hath it not such dominion ouer vs, that it can enforce vs to con­sent thereunto. Loe, this doctrine is not mine, but the flat doctrine of the papists, which I learned of that great pa­pist, who for his learning was surnamed the master of sen­tences, and to this day is publickly read in their diuinitie schooles.

Touching S. Paule, Rom. 7. v. 25. he saith first in this manner: I my selfe with the mind serue the law of God, but with the flesh, the law of sinne. Out of these words I note first, that the Apostle speaketh of the regenerate throughout this whole chapter, because he nameth himselfe, who was Gods chosen and elect vessell. For which respect, and the like expressed in the seuenth chapter to the Romanes, S. Austen changed his opinion, and graunted S. Paule to speake here of the regenerate.Aug. li. 1. retract cap. 22. p. 23. I note secondly, that the elect and regenerate doe serue the law of sinne. I note thirdly, that the best liuers are so farre from meriting ex condigno, grace and glorie, that they deserue in rigour of iustice, eternall death, because death is the reward of sin. VVhich for that S. Austen could not well digest at the first, he thought that S. Paules words were to be vnder­stood of the reprobate, and not of the elect and godly sort: but when he had pondered the Apostles discourse and words more seriously, he changed his opinion. This is confirmed in the selfesame chapter in these words: But I see another law in my members, rebelling against the law of my mind,Rom. 7. v. 23. and subduing me vnto the law of sinne, which is in my members. By these words it is euident, that albeit S. Paule were the child of God, yet could he [Page 43] not merite any thing in Gods sight: but rather in rigour of iustice prouoke Gods heauie displeasure against him: For where or what could be his merite, who was prisoner to the law of sinne?Rom. 7. v. 19. Againe, the same is confirmed in these words: For I do not the good which I would, but the euill which I would not, that doe I. Thus saith S. Paule. And doubtlesse, since he did the euill which he would not, he sinned, though he were regenerate: and in that he sin­ned, he was guiltie of damnation, because death is the stipend of sinne.August. epist. 105. pag. 301. For this cause grauely saith S. Austen: Cum deus coronat merita nostra, nihil aliud coronat, quam munera sua. VVhen God crowneth our merites, he crowneth no­thing els but his owne gifts. Againe, the same is confir­med in these words, For the law is spirituall, but I am car­nall sold vnder sinne.Rom. 7, v. 14. Thus saith S. Paule of himselfe. And yet it is most true, that one vnder the buthen of sinne can merite nothing saue hell fire and eternall paine. Againe, the same is confirmed in these words: If I do that I would not,Rom. 7. v. 20. then it is not I that doth it, but sinne that dwelleth in me. Loe S. Paule graunteth that to be sinne in himselfe, which yet himself consenteth not vnto. And that he spea­keth of originall concupiscence, which remaineth in the regenerate after baptisme, it cannot be denied. And it will not serue the turne, to say as Bellarmine doth, viz. that originall concupiscence remaineth after baptisme, but is no sinne at all: and, that it is called sinne onely in this re­spect, because it prouoketh a man to sinne; as a mans wri­ting is called his hand, because it is written with his hand. For first, their owne master Petrus Lombardus graunteth it to be sinne, euen as S. Paule doth. Secondly, it causeth man to serue the law of sinne, which seruice can neuer be but sinne. Thirdly, S. Paule saith, he doth that ill which he would not, and that which he doth hate. All which must needs be meant of sinne.

That concupiscence remaining after baptisme, is truly called sinne, the papists themselues confesse vnawares in a maine point of doctrine and setled ground of their religi­on. [Page 44] Marke well gentle reader what I shall deliuer in this behalfe.

God chose all in Christ that shall be saued before the foundation of the world: and likewise reprobated al both negatiuely and positiuely (that I may vse their schoole-tearmes:) but positiuely, for the foresight of original sinne. For the proofe hereof, it will suffice to alledge the words of our papists at Rhemes,Rhemes test. in Rom. 9. v. 14. in their notes vpon the new te­stament. Thus doe they write: So likewise, God seeing all mankind, and euery one of the same, in a generall con­demnation and masse of sinne in and by Adam, deliuereth some and not othersome. These are their own words: and that which they teach, is the common doctrine of the Ro­mish church.Rhem. Rom. 9. v. 11. Againe, the same Rhemists in the chapter a­fore quoted haue these words: by the same example of those twins, it is euident also, that neither nations nor particular persons be elected eternally, or called tempo­rally, or preferred to Gods fauour before others by their owne merits: because God when he made choise and first loued Iacob, and refused Esau, respected them both as ill, and the one no lesse than the other guiltie of damnation for originall sinne, which was alike in them both. And therefore where iustly he might haue reprobated both, he saued of mercie one. This is that strong foundation, whereon the papists thinke predestination to be built: the which I willingly doe admit, as which will make good my positiō euen against themselues. For seeing as they grant. That God beholding all in a generall condemnation for originall sinne,Marke wel this Dilemma. saueth the elect of mercie, and iustly de­creeth to condemne the reprobate for originall sinne: it followeth of necessity, that either some reprobate shall be saued, which the papists neither dare nor may auouch, or els that concupiscence remaining after baptisme, is sinne indeed,Junò per actua­lia, & propria sua peccata quid ni? which is the doctrine I defend. The consequution and illation is euident. For if originall sinne be truly re­mitted in baptisme, and be not truly sinne in the baptised, then can none be iustly damned that are baptised: for how [Page 45] shal they be iustly condemned, for that which is remitted? it cannot be. And to graunt that all baptised persons shalbe saued, is most absurd; neither can I thinke any pa­pist so senselesse, as to affirme the same. For to name one for all: their Pope Boniface the eight, who (as their owne deere frier Caranza saith) entred into the popedome as a foxe,Caranza in sum­ma conciliorum. fol. 369. reigned in it as a wolfe, and died in the end as a dog; is not I trow a saint in heauen; and yet must we thinke he was baptised, or els a terrible vae vobis will fall vpon our papists.

Now because the papists vse to boast, that S. Austen is on their side, I will prooue at large, that he defendeth this my doctrine here deliuered: and that I purpose in God to doe so plainely and euidently, as none can stand in doubt thereof, that shal seriously ponder my discourse.

The first place of Saint Austen.

SIcut caecitas cordis, quam solus remouet illuminator Deus, & pec­catum est quo in deum non creditur; Aug. lib. 5. cont. Iulian. cap. 3. tom. 7. & poena peccati, qua cor su­perbum digna animaduersione punitur: & causa peccati, cum mali aliquid caeci cordis errore committitur; ita concupiscentia carnis, ad­uersus quam bonus concupiscit spiritus, & peccatum est, quia inest illi inobedientia contra dominatum mentis: & poena peccati est, quia reddita est meritis inobedientis; & causa peccatiest, defectione con­sentientis, vel contagione nascentis. Like as the blindnesse of heart, which onely God the illuminatour doth remooue, is sinne, through which man beleeueth not in God; and the punishment of sinne, wherwith a proud heart is iustly chastened; and the cause of sinne, when through the blindnesse of heart any euill is committed; euen so con­cupiscence of the flesh, against which the good spirit co­ueteth, is sinne, because there is in it disobedience against the gouernment of the mind: and also a punishment of sinne, because it was rendred to the merits of the disobe­dient: and it is also the cause of sinne, by defection of him that consenteth, or by contagion of the child that is borne.

[Page 46] In these wordes, Saint Austen expresseth three things precisely; first, that concupiscence in the regenerate, is the punishment of sinne; secondly, that it is the cause of sinne; thirdly, that it is sinne it selfe. VVhich three, S. Austen doth not onely distinguish, but withall he yeeldeth three seuerall reasons for the same: and that he speaketh of the regenerate, it is euident in this; because he spea­keth of that concupiscence, against which the good spirit striueth. Most impudent therefore are the papists, when they auouch with open mouth, that Saint Austen onely calleth it sinne, because it is the cause of sinne. And the gentle reader may here also obserue, that S. Austen com­pareth concupiscence of the flesh, with that blindnesse of heart which breedeth infidelity in man: which how great a sinne it is, euery one can tell.

The second place of Saint Austen.

NEque enim nulla est iniquitas, cum in vno homine vel superiora inferioribus turpit [...]r seruiunt; Aug. contr. Iuli­an. lib. 6. cap. 8. to. 7. vel inferiora superioribus con­tumaciter reluctantur, etiam si vincere non sinantur. For it is some iniquitie, when in one man, either the superiour parts shamefully serue the inferiour; or the inferiour partes stubbornly striue against the superiour, although they be not suffered to preuaile.

These words of Saint Austen are so plaine, as the papists cannot possible inuent any euasion at all. For he saith in plaine and expresse tearmes; that the rebellion which is betweene the flesh and the spirit, is sinne; yea, that it is euen then sinne, when it is resisted, and cannot preuaile. At which time and in which respect, the papists will haue it to be merite, but no sinne at all. Behold a flat contra­diction, it is sinne, saith Saint Austen: it is merite and no sinne, say the papists.

The third place of Saint Austen.

SI in parente baptizato potest & esse & peccatum non esse, August. de. nup­tijs & concupis. lib. 1. cap. 25. to. 7. cur ea­dem ipsa in prole peccatum est? ad haec respondetur, dimitti concu­piscentiam [Page 47] carnis in baptismo, non vt non sit, sed vt in peccatum non imputetur. Sequitur, non ergo aliquid remanet quod non remittatur, cum fit sicut scriptum est, propitius dominus omnibus iniquitatibus nostris; sed donec fiat & quod sequitur,Ps. 103. v. 3.qui sanat omnes languores tuo, qui redimet de corruptione vitam tuam: manet in corpore mortis huius carnalis concupiscentia. It remaineth sinne by na­ture, and so passeth by regeneration, from the pa­rents to the children. If concupiscence can both be in the baptised parent, and withall be no sinne, why is the selfe same made sinne in the child? to this, this is the an­swere: that the concupiscence of the flesh is forgiuen in baptisme, not so that it remaine not, but so that it is not reputed for sinne. Not any thing therefore remaineth, which is not forgiuen, seeing that is done which is writ­ten, God is mercifull to all our iniquities: but vntill that be done also which followeth: which healeth all thine in­firmities; which redeemeth thy life from corruption: carnall concupiscence abideth in the bodie of this death.

Saint Austen in these wordes sheweth plainely, that concupiscence remaineth aswell in the baptised parent, as in the vnbaptised child; yet with this difference, that it is sinne in the parent, though not for sinne imputed; but in the child it both is sinne, and is also so reputed. And the reader must not forget, that Saint Austen saith, No­thing remaineth which is not forgiuen. He doth not say, Nothing is sinne that remaineth; or thus, No sinne remai­neth: but thus, Not any thing remaineth, which is not re­mitted. As if he had said, sinne indeede remaineth still in the baptised, but shall not be imputed to the faithfull. Marke well gentle reader, the phrase which Saint Austen here vseth. It is forgiuen that still remaineth, saith Saint Austen; or, not any thing remaineth, which is not forgi­uen. Therefore he must needes meane, that something remaineth which is sinne, though pardoned and not re­puted sinne. For nothing hath need of forgiuenesse, but that which is sinne indeed.

The fourth place of Saint Austen.

I Deo apostolus non ait facere bonum sibi non adiacere, August. de nupt­tijs & concupis. libr. 1. cap. 29. sed perficere. Multum enim boni facit, qui facit quod scriptum est; post concu­piscentias [Page 48] tuas non eas; sed non perficit, quia non implet quod scrip­tum est; non concupisces. The apostle therefore saith not, that he hath not power to doe good, but that he cannot per­fect that which is good. For he doth great good, who doth that which is written; Follow not thy lustes: but he doth not perfect his well doing, because he doth not ful­fil that which is written, Thou shalt not lust.

Out of these wordes of Saint Austen, I note many me­morable documents. First, that Saint Austen speaketh these wordes of the regenerate; for they onely can doe this good, whereof the apostle speaketh. Secondly, that though the regenerate can doe good, and striue against lust; yet can they not doe that good so perfectly, but it is alwayes annexed to sinne, and chayned with it, as with an heauie yokefellow. Thirdly, that the tenth comman­dement (marke well my wordes) prohibiteth not onely actuall lust done with consent, but also originall lust com­mitted without consent; and consequently, that concu­piscence remaining in the regenerate, is sinne properlie and formallie. I prooue it, because Saint Paul could not performe this precept, as Saint Austen truely and lear­nedly obserued: who for all that touching actuall sinne, was most free and innocent. For he fought mightily a­gainst his raging concupiscence, and did in no wise yeeld thereunto. He was therefore guiltie by reason of origi­nall concupiscence, which abode in him against his will. Therefore most absurd is the exposition of the Rhemists,Rom. 7. v. 7. who beare the reader in hand, that Saint Paul speaketh not of the habituall concupiscence, or sensuall desire and inclination to euill, when he forbiddeth to lust. For if onely the consent of our reason and mind, to obey and to follow the lusts thereof, were sinne indeede; then should Saint Austens exposition be very childish and too too ab­surd, who telleth vs plainely in expresse tearmes, That S. Paul could not fulfill that precept, although he did not yeeld his consent vnto it, neither did obey or follow the desires thereof. No, no, Saint Paul had no such meaning; [Page 49] he named it sinne, as it is indeed. He saith, hee had not knowne lust to be sinne,Rom. 7. v. 7. except the law had said, Thou shalt not lust. But he could neuer be ignorant, that con­cupiscence with consent was sinne; seeing the verie hea­then men did know, and confesse the same. Againe, that actuall concupiscence which our Rhemists speake of,Matt. 5. v. 22. is forbidden in the sixt, seuenth, and eight commaunde­ments; as Christ himselfe expondeth them. And conse­quently, the tenth commandement forbiddeth, the very habituall and sensuall desire, or inclination to sinne, and the euill fruits thereof; that is, wicked, vicious, and in­iurious thoughts, though wee resist and striue against them. This is the expresse doctrine of Saint Austen in an­other place,August. de nupt. & concup. lib. 1. cap. 27. which he deliuereth in these words; Agite­nim aliquid concupiscentia carnis, & quando non exhibetur ei vel cor­dis assensus, vbi regnet, vel membra velut arma, quibus impleatur quod iubet: agit autem quid, nisi ipsa desideria mala & turpia? Non enim si bona & licita essent, eis obedire prohiberet apostolus. For concupiscence of the flesh worketh something, euen when there is not giuen vnto it, either the consent of the heart,Rom. 6. v. 12. where it may reigne; or the members as weapons, which may accomplish what it appointeth. And what doth it, but the very wicked and filthy desires? For if they were good and lawfull, the apostle would not forbid to obey them.

Marke these wordes gentle reader; for they fortifie that which is already said, and giue a deadly blow to the papists: two things are cleered by this testimony of Saint Austen, the one, that concupiscence to which consent is not giuen, bringeth foorth ill desires: the other, that the said desires are vnlawfull, and prohibited by the law of God. And so we haue it euidently prooued, by many inuinsible reasons; that concupiscence habitued, to which the regenerate yeeld no consent, but stoutly resist the same; is so farre from being meritorious, as the pa­pist teach, that it is sinne formally, and properly so called. Neither will it serue their turne, to obiect that which is e­uer [Page 50] in their mouthes, that it is inuoluntarie, and can no way be auoided, and so no sinne at all. This obiection I grant, carrieth a maiestie with it; and it seemeth to many men, to be insoluble. But God willing, I shall make it so cleere and euident, as euery child may behold with facili­tie, the weakenesse, falshood, and absurditie thereof.

Saint Austen prooueth at large in sundrie places of his workes,Aug. lib. 1. re­tract. cap. 13. pag. 13. that inuoluntarie motions of concupiscence are sinne in deed, and truely so called. In his first booke of retractations, he hath these wordes; Illud quod in paruulis dicitur originale peccatum, cum adhuc non vtantur libero arbitrio voluntatis, non absurdè vocatur etiam voluntarium; quid ex pri­mi hominis mala voluntate contractum, factum est quodammodo haereditarium. Non ita (que) falsum est quod dixi, vs (que) adeo peccatum voluntarium malum est, vt nullo modo sit peccatum si non sit volunta­rium. That which in infants is called originall sinne, when as yet they vse not free arbitrement of will, is not absurd­ly called voluntarie; because being contracted of the e­uill will of the first man, it is become in a sort hereditarie. It is not therefore false which I said,Aug. retract. lib. 1. cap. 15. pag. 16. sinne is an euill so vo­luntarie, that it is no way sinne, if it be not voluntarie.

Againe, in an other place S. Austen hath these words; Quod si quisquam dicit etiam ipsam cupiditatē nihil esse aliud quam voluntatē, sed vitiosam peccato (que) seruientem, non resistendum est, nec de verbis, cum res constat, controuersia facienda est. Sic enim ostendi­tur sine voluntate nullū esse peccatū, siue in opere, siue in origine. But if any man say, that concupiscence is nothing else, than a wil that is vitious & seruing sinne, there is no resistance to be made; neither must controuersie be in words, when the thing is cleere & euident. For so we proue euery sinne to be voluntarie, either in the act, or else in the originall.

Againe, he hath these wordes;August. vbi sup pag. 17. Propterea non perturbat de paruulis questio, quia ex illius origine rei tenentur qui voluntate pec­cauit, quando libero & ad faciendū, & ad non faciendū motu animi non carebat, ei (que) ab opere malo abstinendi sūma potestas erat. Ther­fore let no man be troubled with the question about in­fants, because they are guiltie by reason of his originall, [Page 51] that sinned voluntarily; hauing free motion of mind both to do & not to do, as also full power to absteine from euil.

Thus we see most euidently, that the vnuoluntary mo­tions of concupiscence, so tearmed of the papists, are both sinfull and voluntarie: sinfull in their nature, and volun­tarie in the originall. And the papists may as well denie concupiscence to bee sinne in the infants vnbaptised, as in them that are baptised, vpon this their falsly supposed ground. For it is as vnuoluntarie in the one, as it is in the other; neither can it bee any more auoided in the one, than in the other. This is the gordian knot which the papists are neuer able to loose, or vntie.

Bellarmine himselfe is enforced to confesse,Bellarm. tom. 3. col. 400. vide Aug. de spiritu & liter. cap. vlt. tom. 3. that Saint Austen acknowledgeth all the motions of concupiscence, euen those which be inuoluntarie, to be properly sinne, and flatly condemned by the tenth commaundement. These are his expresse wordes; Haec dicta sunt ad mentem S. Augustini, qui precepto, non concupisces, intelligit prohiberi aliquo modo motus omnes concupiscentiae, etiam inuoluntarios; as­sensum vero his motibus, prohibere docet illo alio precepto: post concu­piscentias tuas non eas. These things are spoken after Saint Austens mind,Eccles. 18. v. 30. who by this precept, (Thou shalt not lust) vnderstandeth all the motions of concupiscence, euen the inuoluntarie, to be prohibited in some sort; and that the consent to these motions, is forbidden by that other pre­cept; Follow not thy concupiscence. Thus writeth the Iesuiticall Cardinall: by whose doctrine it is euident, that Saint Austen affirmeth the first motions of concupiscence: which preuent reason cannot be auoyded to bee con­demned by Saint Paul, as sinfull and against the law of God. Which doctrine of Saint Austen doth so sting and confound all papists, that Bellarmine knoweth not in the world what he shall answere to the same. And therefore deceitfully he addeth in his exposition of Saint Austens words, the word (quodammodo, after a sort;) which word neither is in Saint Austen, nor yet agreeable to his mea­ning. For Saint Austen saith plainely, simply, and abso­lutely, [Page 52] without all ands, or ifs, or other qualifications, that such motions are forbidden by this commandement, (non concupisces.) And for the consummation of this doctrine, (which ouerthroweth the best part of poperie,) I will here adde to Saint Pauls doctrine, and the exposition of Saint Austen; the flat testimonie of Saint Iohn an other Apostle, who singeth the same song with Saint Paul.

Saint Iohn in his first epistle,1. Ioan. 3. v. 4. hath these words; [...]. Euery one that sinneth, transgresseth the law. And sinne is the trans­gression of the law. These are S. Iohns words truly trans­lated out of the originall Greeke. But before we proceed any further in the discourse hereof,Rhem [...] test. in the notes in 1. Ioan. 3. 4. let vs take a view of that doctrine, which our papists of Rhemes haue sent vs. These are their words; Iniquitie is not taken here for wickednesse, as it is commonly vsed both in Latin and in our language, as is plaine by the Greeke word [...] sig­nifying nothing else, but swaruing or declining from the straight line of the law of God, or nature. So that the A­postle meaneth, that euery sinne is an obliquitie or defect from the rule of the law: but not contrarie, that euery such swaruing from the law, should be properly a sinne, as the heretikes doe vntruly gather, to proue that concu­piscence remaining after baptisme is a very sinne, though we neuer giue our consent vnto it. Thus they write. Out of whose words, I gather two notable documēts; the one, that the word [...] is a defect and swaruing from the law, but not properly a sinne: the other, that if [...] be proued to be sinne properly, then wil it also follow of necessity by S. Iohns doctrine, that concupiscence in the regenerate is properly sinne. Let this doctrine be wel marked, as which is no lesse apparant then important. Now, it only remai­neth for the victorie, & truth of this article, That I proue against our papists the Rhemists, that the Greeke word [...] doth signifie sinne properly: behold the proofe.

A very famous papist and great linguist,Arias Montan. in 1. Ioan. 3. Ben. Arias Montanus, saith plainely in expresse teames, that [...] [Page 53] is transgressio legis, the transgression of the law. Now, that the transgression of Gods law is properly sinne, none is so sottish, that he doth not vnderstand it; none so impious, that he will denie it; none so peeuish, that he will not ac­knowledge it. But I proue the same.

S. Ambrose hath these words: Quid est enim peccatum, nisi preuaricatio legis diuine, Ambros. de pa­rad. cap. 8. tom. 4. & coelestium inobedientia preceptorum? For what is sinne,Vide Ambros. in 7. cap. ad rom. & in sine huius articuli. but the transgression of Gods law, and disobedience to his heauenly precepts? Loe, sinne (saith S. Ambrose) is nothing els but the transgression of Gods law, that is to say, nothing els but [...], as S. Iohn tear­meth it, and as Arias Montanus doth interprete it.

S. Austen hath these words:August. de con­sensu Euangel. cap. 4. tom. 4. Peccatum est transgressio legis. Sinne is a transgression of the law. Loe S. Austen conclu­deth with S. Ambrose, and they both agree with S. Iohn.

The same S. Austen in another place defineth sinne in this manner.Aug. cont. Faust. lib. 22. cap. 27. tom. 6. pag. 281. Peccatum est dictum, vel factum, vel concupitum ali­quid, contra legem aternam. Sinne is a word, deed, thought, or desire, against the eternall law (of God.) And what the eternall law is, he sheweth in these words next following in the same place: Lex aeterna est ratio diuina vel voluntas Dei, ordinem naturalem conseruari iubens, Vide Bernard. de aduent. dom. serm. 6. to. 1. p. 16. perturbari vetans. The eter­nall law is the reason or will of God, which commaundeth the naturall order to be obserued, and forbiddeth the same to be perturbed.

Thus writeth this auntient, graue, and learned father; by whose iudgement it is properly sinne, whatsoeuer is against the will of God. So then, Gods will is that law and rule, by which euery sinne must be measured and tried. And consequently, whatsoeuer deflecteth, declineth, or swarueth from the will of God, the same is most properlie sinne. The reason hereof is euident, because not to be cor­respondent and agreeable to Gods will, is the very in­trinsecall reason, essence, and nature of sinne. But so it is, that the [...], disorder, and concupiscence in the regene­rate, is repugnant and disagreeable to the will of God: and consequently, it must be sinne indeed.

[Page 54] S. Bede, [...] Beda in 1. Ioan. 3 who for his learning and vertue was renowned throughout the whole Christian world, and thereupon surnamed venerabilis, hath these expresse words: Virtus hu­ius sententiae facilius in lingua Graecorum, qua edita est epistola, com­prehenditur. Si quidem apud eos iniquitas [...] vocatur, quod sig­nificat quasi contra legem vel sine lege factum. Si quidem lex Graece [...] appellatur sequitur; sed & latinum nomen eidem rationi con­gruit, quod iniquitas quasi aequitati aduersa nuncupatur. Quia qui­cunque peccat, contarius nimirum aequitati diuinae legis peccando existit. The force and efficacie of this sentence is more ea­sily perceiued in the Greeke tongue, in which the epistle was written. For iniquitie with them is called [...], which signifieth, As done against law, or without law. For the law is called in Greeke [...]. The Latine word also agreeth to the same reason, because it is called iniquitie, as being a­gainst equitie: for euery one that sinneth, is by reason of sinne, contrarie to the equitie of Gods law. See more to this effect in the eight article following.

Dionysius Carthusianus, Dionys. Carthus. in 1. Ioan. 3. a famous papist, hath these words: Lex autem diuina est aequitas ipsa; sic (que) mortale peccatum est ini­quitas, id est, non aequitas, vtpote violatio aequitatis. The law of God is equitie it selfe: and consequently, iniquitie, that is, not equitie, to wit, the transgression of equitie, is a mor­tall sinne.

Nicolaus de Lyra, Lyr. in 1. Ioan. 3. another famous popish writer, hath these words: Peccatum est transgressio legis diuinae. Lex autem diuina est ipsa aequitas; & ideo in omni peccato mortali est equitatis corruptio, & per consequens, iniquitas. Sinne is the transgression of the law diuine, and therefore in euery mortall sinne there is corruption of equitie: and consequently, there is also iniquitie.

The Corollarie.

Now gentle reader, thou hast heard the expresse words and plaine testimonies, as well of the auntient fathers, S. Ambrose, S. Austen, and S. Bede, as also of the two famous popish writers, Carthusianus, and Lyranus, concerning this great question and most important point of doctrine, in [Page 55] which the very life of poperie doth consist.

I haue proued first euen by the testimonie of S. Paule, and of S. Austen, expounding his words, as also of the Ie­suit Bellarmine graunting the same, that concupiscence re­maining after baptisme in the regenerate, is both called sinne, and is properly sinne indeed.

Secondly, that the first motions of concupiscence which are connaturall to the corrupt man, and can no way be auoided, are flatly forbidden by this commaundement, Thou shalt not couet.

Thirdly, that though the said rebellious motions be inuoluntarie in the worke; yet are they voluntarie in the originall: which is sufficient saith S. Austen.

Fourthly, that Cardinall Bellarmine not able truly to an­swere S. Austens words, hath in his explication added de­ceitfully, this word (quodammodo) after a sort: VVhich word cannot be found in S. Austen, neither is it agreeable to his meaning. But such beggerly shifts and sillie euasions are the props and staies of late Romish religion.

Fiftly, that by S. Iohns doctrine euery deflection from the eternall law, is properly [...], and consequently, it is properly sinne.

Sixtly, that S. Ambrose, S. Austen, and S. Bede, doe all three affirme constantly and with vniforme assent, that sinne is nothing els but [...], and a transgression of the law of God.

Seuenthly, that by the flat doctrine not only of Saint Bede, but also of two famous popish writers (whose autho­ritie is euer most forcible against papists) Dionysius Carthus. and Nicholaus Lyranus, iniquitie is a mortall sinne, because it is against the eternall law, which is equitie it selfe, and the will of God.

Eightly, that our papists of Rhemes do confute them­selues vnawares, while they tell vs, that euery sinne is a declining and swaruing from Gods law: but withal denie, that euery such swaruing from Gods law, is properly sinne. For, seeing Gods law is nothing els but his will, as is alrea­die [Page 56] proued, the papists must either confesse, that to swarue and decline from Gods will is properly sinne; or els, that to decline and swarue from Gods will, is consonant and a­greeable to his will: which to hold, is not onely most ab­surd, but withall implieth flat contradiction.

Against this discourse of originall concupiscence in the regenerate, nothing in truth can be alledged for the pa­pists. Yet,Rhemists in 1. John 3. to take away all wrangling, I will truly put downe the vpshot of our Rhemists, and frame my answer to the same. Thus doe they write, Though in the 5. chap­ter, verse 17. the Apostle turne the speech, affirming eue­ry iniquitie to be sinne; yet there the Greeke word is not the same as before, [...], but [...]. By which it is plaine, that there he meaneth by iniquitie, mans actuall and pro­per transgression, which must needs be a sinne. These are their words, to which I answere in this wise.

First, that though the Greeke word be different, yet is it equiualent, and so the sence all one. This to be so, S. Au­sten will testifie with me in these words: Nemo dicat, aliud est peccatum, August. in epist. Ioan. tract 4. tom. 9. pag. 412. at (que) aliud iniquitas. Nemo dicat, ego peccator homo sum, sed iniquus non sum. Omnis qui facit peccatum, & iniquitatem fa­cit. Let no man say, sinne is one thing, and iniquitie ano­ther thing. Let no man say, I am a sinfull man, but not vn­righteous. For euery one that committeth sinne, commit­teth also iniquitie. Thus writeth S. Austen, and what he saith, the same say Beda and Oecumenius. VVho as we see here, doth plainely and expressely affirme, sinne and ini­quitie to be all one. So that whatsoeuer is sinne, must also be iniquitie; and whatsoeuer is iniquitie, the same likewise must be sinne. Neither is it to the purpose to iterate their vsuall song, because, as is alreadie prooued, Saint Ambrose telleth them in another place, that this sinne is committed against the will of man.Ambros in 7 cap. ad Roman. p. 205 These are his words: Numquid quia inuitum hominem dicit peccare, immunis debet videri à crimine; quia hoc agit quod non vult, pressus vi potestatis? Non vtique. Ip­sius enim vitio & desidia haec caepta sunt. Quia enim mancipauit se per assensum peccato, iure illius dominatur. Is therefore a man [Page 57] cleere and free from sinne, because he saith man sinneth against his will? because he doth that which he would not doe, being pressed with the violence of power? No truly: for these things began through his fault and negligence. For seeing he consented to be a slaue vnto sinne, sinne by right hath dominion ouer him. Loe, a man is guiltie of sinne, yea euen of that sinne which he doth against his will, and cannot auoid the same, that is, of originall concu­piscence. And S. Ambrose yeeldeth a reason hereof, because this impossibilitie came of mans default. And this is the ve­ry case of infants, as is alreadie said. Let the reader here obserue seriously with me,Inuoluntarie in the act, yet voluntarie in the cause. that S. Ambrose calleth this in­uoluntarie concupiscence, crimen, a crime or mortall sinne.

Secondly, that S. Bede affirmeth not only all to be sinne which is iniquitie; but also reputeth the very corruption of innocencie, which commeth of infirmitie, to be sinne in Gods sight. These are his expresse words: Omnes qui pec­cant, praeuaricationis rei sunt; Beda vbi supr. hoc est, non solum illi qui data sibi scrip­tae legis scita contemnunt, sed & illi qui innocentiam legis naturalis quam in protoplasto omnes accepimus, siue infirmitate, siue negligentia siue etiam ignorantia corrumpunt. All that sinne, are guiltie of preuarication or transgression of the law; that is, not only they which contemne the precepts of the written law gi­uen them, but they also, which either of infirmitie, or of negligence, or of ignorance, corrupt the innocencie of the law of Nature, which we all receiue in the Protoplast (Adam.)

S. Ambrose in another place iumpeth with Bede in these words:Ambros. in 7 cap ad Roman. p. 203 Non discreuit concupiscentiam hanc à peccato, sed miscuit, hoc significans, quia cum nec suspicio quidem esset istud non licerè apud deum, cognoui inquit, esse peccatum. Sub sua persona, quasi ge­neralem agit causam. Lexita (que) concupiscentiam prohibet, quae propte­rea quod oblectamento est, non putabatur esse peccatum. He hath not discerned this concupiscence from sinne, but hath coupled it with sinne, signifying thereby, that when there was not so much as any suspition, that this thing was not lawfull before God, I knew, saith he, that it is sinne. Vnder [Page 58] his own person, he pleadeth as it were the generall cause. The law therefore forbiddeth concupiscence, which be­cause it delighteth, seemeth not to be sinne. Thus writeth S. Ambrose; whose words cannot possibly be vnderstood of any other concupiscence, than of that which is inuolunta­rie and originall.

Thirdly, that their owne vulgar Latine text, (which the late councell of Trent preferreth before both the He­brew and the Greeke, and commandeth all papists to vse it as authenticall, and none other) hath the word (iniqui­tas) in both places; and doth call as well [...] as [...]. In­iniquitie: these are the expresse words; omnis iniquitas pec­catum est: All iniquitie is sinne. Loe, their owne transla­tion (to which all papists are tied as a Beare to a stake) doth flatlie confound them all, and saith plainelie and ex­pressely, That euerie iniquitie is a sinne. And yet the pa­pists of Rhemes bluntishly and impudently defend the contrarie, crying out with open mouthes, That some ini­quitie is not sinne. The truth is this, that they are driuen to a non plus, and cannot tell in the world what to say a­gainst this doctrine of concupiscence in the regenerate. For both [...] and [...] is truly and fitly tearmed iniquitas or iniquitie. VVhich (but that I studie to be briefe) I could shew by a thousand testimonies, out of S. Austen, S. Ambrose, and S. Bede. Answere therefore ô papist if ye can, or if ye dare not, because ye cannot, then reclaime your selues, and yeeld vnto the truth for shame. I challenge you, and adiure you, if your hearts faile you not, and if your owne consciences condemne you not, to send me an answere to this short challenge, which I haue compiled very briefely, so once to prouoke you to the open combat, which I haue now many years expected at your hands, and could neuer yet find so much courage in any of you all. VVherefore to seale vp the veritie of this article, as an vndoubted truth, I will here adde for the complement, as amost delicat post-past, to satisfie the longing appetites of the Iesuit Parsons, the arch priest Blackwell, and all the traiterous crew of that [Page 59] Iesuited brotherhood; the flat testimonie of their saint Thomas Aquinas, whose doctrine they are bound to defend, beleeue, and approue, and may not in any case refuse or denie the same:Aquinas. 1. 2. q. 74. art. 3. 3. these are his expresse words; Dicendū quod illud quod homo facit sine deliberatione rationisnon perfectè ipse facit; quia nihil operatur ibi id quod est principale in homine, vnde non est perfectè actus humanus, & per consequens non potest esse perfectè actus virtutis vel peccati, sed aliquid imperfectum ingenere horum. Vnde talis motus sensualitatis rationem perueniens, est peccatum ve­niale, quod est quiddam imperfectum in genere peccati. VVe must answere, that that which man doth without the delibera­tion of reason, he doth it not perfectly, because that which is the chiefest in man, worketh nothing there: wherefore it is not perfectly mans act, and consequently it cannot be perfectly the act of vertue or of sinne, but some vnperfect thing in this kind. VVhereupon it commeth, that such a motion of sensualitie preuenting reason, is a veniall sinne, which is a certaine imperfect thing in the nature of sinne.

Thus writeth Aquinas, out of whose words I note these important obseruations. First, that this Aquinas is a popish canonized saint. Secondly, that for his great learning he was surnamed, Doctor Angelicus, The Angelicall Doctor. Thirdly, that Pope Vrbanus the fourth, and Pope Innocen­tius the fift, did so admire and reuerence the excellent lear­ning of this famous schoole-doctor (who was a learned clarke indeed) that they confirmed his doctrine for au­thenticall, and gaue it the first place after the canonicall Scripture. Fourthly, that this great doctor, so highly re­nowned in the Romish church, that no papist may denie or gainesay that which he hath written, graunteeth freely, teacheth plainely, and auoucheth constantly, that the in­ordinate motion of sensualitie which goeth before reason is properly a sinne, though but a veniall sinne, as he tear­meth it. For it is one thing, to be a sinne perfectly, another thing, to be a sinne properly. A veniall and little sinne is as well and as truly a sinne, as a mortall and great sinne, as the papists tearme them. For he is as truly and properly a [Page 60] theefe that stealeth a lambe or a goose, as he that stealeth an oxe or a horse, though not a theefe in so high degree. For mortall and veniall sinnes (as the papists tearm them) doe onely differ, Secundum magis & minus, according to more and lesse. But in truth, euery sinne is mortall, as I haue alreadie proued in my booke of Motiues.Add to this the sixt article, & note it well Answer ô papists, if ye can; if not, repent for shame.

The fift Article. Of the con­digne so supposed merite of workes.

THe papists either of ignorance or of malice, doe most vnchristianlie slander the professors of Christs Gospell, as though they were enemies to good workes: when in deed, they both thinke, preach, and write, more Chri­stianly, more religiously, and more sincerely, than the papists doe, of and concerning godlie actions and good workes. In regard hereof, before I come to the maine point of that, which I pur­pose to oppugne in this article: I graunt first of all, that though good workes neither doe nor can goe before iustification; yet they euer follow (as the fruits fol­low the tree) the persons that are freely iustified by Gods mercie in Christ Iesus, for his merits and condigne deserts.

I graunt secondly, that though good workes goe not before iustification; yet doe they so necessarilie goe be­fore saluation, that no man without them can attaine [Page 61] eternall life, when possibilitie is graunted to doe them.

I graunt thirdly, that good workes are the true effects of predestination; by which the children of God make their saluation sure vnto themselues, and manifest vnto the world. Yet this notwithstanding, I hold constantlie, beleeue stedfastly, and affirme Christianlie, that albeit good workes are the effects of predestination, and neces­sarie fruits of faith and iustification; yet neither are they the cause of predestination, nor of iustification, neither doe they or can they merit ex condigno, eternall life or glo­rie. I say (merit ex condigno) because I willingly graunt with the auntient writers and holie fathers, that good workes in a godly sense may be said to merit; that is to say, to impetrate fauour and reward at Gods hands, for his mercie and promise sake, who hath promised not to leaue vnrewarded,Matt. 10. v. 42. lac. 1. 12. so much as one cup of cold water gi­uen in his name: but they can neuer truly be said to me­rite, for any worthinesse or condigne desert of the works that are done. Against which last part, I contend with the papists at this present; and namely, against the late decree of the late Romish Counsell of Trent,Concil. Trid. sess. 6. die 13. Ian. can. 32. whose ex­presse wordes are these; Si quis dixerit hominis iustificati bona opera ita esse dona Dei, vt non sint etiam bona ipsius iustificati meri­ta, aut ipsum iustificatum, bonis operibus quae ab eo per Dei gratiam & Iesu Christi meritum, cuius membrum viuum est, fiunt, non verè mereri augmentum gratiae, vitam aeternam, & ipsius vitae aeternae, si tamen in gratia decesserit, consecutionem, at (que) etiam gloriae augmen­tum, anathema sit. If any shall say, that the good workes of the iustified man are so the gifts of God, that they be not also the good merites of him that is iustified; or that the iustified man, by his good workes which he doth by the grace of God, and merit of Christ Iesus, whose liuely member he is, doth not truly merit the increase of grace, eternall life, and the consequution of the same eternall life, if he shal depart hence in grace, and also the augment of glory, let him be accursed.

Here we see the flat doctrine of the Romish Church; [Page 62] which whosoeuer will not beleeue stedfastly, must bee damned euerlastingly, and with fire and faggot bee sent packing speedily. Yet that this doctrine is most absurd in it selfe, most blaphemous against the free mercie of God, and most iniurious to the inestimable merits of our Lord Iesus; I vndertake by Gods assistance, to prooue by such cleere and euident demonstrations, as shalbe able to sa­tisfie all indifferent readers, and to put the papists to si­lence for euer in this behalfe.

The first reason, drawne from the holy Scriptures.

THe first place of holy scripture, is conteined in these words; [...]. But the gift of God is life euerlasting,Rom. 6. v. 23. in Christ Iesus our Lord. This text of scripture doth plainely conuince, that life eternall cannot be condignely atchieued, by the workes of man; for being the free gift of God, it can no way be due to the merite of mans worke. The Rhemists to extenuate the cleerenesse of this text, and as it were to hide and conceale the euidencie thereof, doe translate, for the Gift of God, the Grace of God, following their old vulgar Latin edition. VVhich translation though in this place it mae be admitted, yet doth it not sufficiently ex­presse the efficacie of the originall word [...], which signifieth a gift freely bestowed; for which respect, their owne famous linguist Arias Montanus, who was the onely man chosen as most sufficient, for the translation of the old testament out of the Hebrew, and of the new out of Greeke, and imployed by the king of Spaine for that on­lie end, did not translate gratia, but donatio; not grace, but donation (or free gift.) Now, let vs see and view the iudgement of the holy fathers, vpon this portion of holy writ. Saint Theodoret hath these wordes; Hic non dicit merce­dem, Theod. in cap. 6. ad Roman. sed gratiam: est enim Dei donum vita aeterna, & si quis enim summam & absolutam iustitiam praestiterit, temporalibus laboribus aeterna in aequilibrio non respondent. He saith no there reward, but grace; for eternal life is the gift of God: For although [Page 63] one could performe the highest and absolute iustice, yet eternall ioyes being weighed with temporall labours, are nothing answerable.

Saint Chrysostome hath these wordes;Chrysost, in cap. 6. ad Roman. Non eundem seruat oppositorum ordinem. Non enim dicit, merces benefactorum vestro­rum vita aeterna, sed donum Dei vita aeterna; vt ostenderet, quod non proprijs viribus liberati sint, ne (que) debitum, aut merces, aut la­borum sit retributio, sed omnia illa ex diuino munere gratuitò ac­ceperint. He doth not obserue the same order of opposites. For he saith not, eternall life is the reward of your good workes; but, eternall life is the gift of God: that he might shew, that they are not deliuered by their owne strength or vertues; and that it is not a debt, or a wages, or a re­tribution of labours, but that they haue receiued all those things freely of the gift of God.

Origen writeth thus,Origen. in cap. 6. ad Rom. vpon the same wordes; Deum verò non erat dignum militibus suis stipendia, quasi debitum ali (que) dare; sed donum & gratiam quae est vita aeterna, in Christo Iesu domino nostro. But it was not a thing worthy beseeming God, to giue stipends to his souldiers, as a due debt or wage; but to bestow on them a gift or free grace, which is eternall life in Christ Iesus our Lord.

Saint Ambrose hath these wordes;Ambros. in cap. 6. ad Rom. Sicut enim sequentes pec­catum acquirunt mortem, ita & sequentes gratium Dei, id est, fidem Christi quae donat peccata, babebunt vitam aeternam. For as they that follow sinne, gaine death: so they that follow the grace of Christ, that is, the faith of Christ which forgiueth sinnes, shall haue eternall life.

Theophilact hath these wordes;Theoph. in cap. 6. Rom. Gratiam autem, non merce­dem dixit à Deo futurum, perinde ac si inquiat; non enim laborum accipitis premia, sed per gratiam fiunt haec omnia in Christo Iesu, qui haec operatur & factitat. He said grace, not wages, was to come from God; as if he should say, for ye receiue not re­wards of labours, but all these things are done by grace in Christ Iesus, who worketh and doth them.

Anselmus and Photius haue the same wordes in effect, which I omit in regard of breuitie.

[Page 64] By these manifold testimonies of the holy fathers, the doctrine which I defend, is cleere and euident; viz. that eternall life is the free gift of God, and is not merited or purchased by desert of man; that eternall life is not a due debt, a deserued wages, or retribution of mans la­bours, but proceedeth wholy and solie of the free mercy and grace of God; that mans workes waighed in the bal­lance, with the ioyes of heauen, are nothing at all answer­able vnto them. To which fathers, I will add the verdict of Paulus Burgensis, Paulus Burgen. addit. 2 in 6. ca. ad Rom. a verie famous popish Spanish Bishop. These are his wordes: Noluit ergo dicere, stipendium iustitiae vita aeterna: sed maluit dicere, gratia Dei vita aeterna: quia eadem merita quibus redditur, non a nobis sunt, sed in nobis à Deo facta sunt per gratiam. He would not therefore say, eternall life is the stipend of iustice: but he had rather say, eternall life is the grace of God: because the same merits to which it is rendered, are not of our selues, but wrought in our selues by God through grace.

The second text of holy scripture, is contained in these wordes:Rom. 8. v. 18. I count that the afflictions of this present time, are not worthy of the future glory which shall be reuea­led toward vs. Loe, all our [...], all our passions, af­flictions, and penalties, that we are able to endure in this life, are so farre from being meritorious of eternall life, that they are in no wise comparable to the same.

Theoderetus doth liuely expresse this verietie, in these most golden wordes:Theodor. in cap. 8. ad Rom. Superant certamina coronae, non compa­rantur cum laboribus remunerationes labor enim paruus est, sed magnum lucrum speratur. Et propterea non mercedem, sed gloriam vocauit ea quae expectantur. The conflicts of the crowne doe remaine, the labours are not comparable to the rewards: for the labour is small, but the gaine hoped for, is great. And therefore the things expected, are not called a re­ward, but glory.

Anselmus hath these wordes;Anselmus in 8. cap. ad Rom. Hoc est, si quis pateretur om­nes paenarum acerbitates, quae in tempore presentis vitae sufferri pos­sunt; non essent omnes illae passiones dignum meritum ad consequu­tionem [Page 65] futurae gloriae, quae ablato omni velamine reuelabitur in nobis. If one should suffer all kindes of torment, which can bee endured in this life: yet would not all those afflictions, torments, or passions, be a sufficient and condigne me­rite, to atteine the future glory; which, when euery vaile is taken out of the way, shalbe reuealed in vs. Marke well these wordes in this famous popish writer, because they are most important: for, seeing he was a great pa­pist, his proofe must needes be good against the papists. Againe, his words are so cleere and manifest, that no eua­sion can haue place. For, he saith in plaine and expresse tearmes; that all which is possible to be done or endured in this world, can not be a worthy or condigne merite of eternall life. No answere in truth, can be made hereun­to, it iumpeth in deed; with the true sense and meaning of Saint Paul.

The third place of holy scripture,Tit. 3. 5. is contained in these words: Not by the works of iustice which we haue done, but according to his mercie he hath saued vs, by the lauer of regeneration and renouation of the holy Ghost. These are the Apostles words, euen as our Rhe­mists haue alledged them. By which words it is most cleere and apparant, that we are not onely iustified, but also saued of meere mercie and the free gift of God. And consequently, that eternall life hath no merite on the be­halfe of man. For after saluation once accomplished, all merite is vaine and needlesse.

Anselmus hath these golden words;Anselmus in tit. cap. 3. Tunc saluos nos fecit, qui nostris meritis eramus perditione digni: non enim ex operibus iusti­tiae quae fecimus nos, processit haec salus, quia nulla opera iustitiae fece­ramus, vnde salutem meruissemus; sed ipse secundum misericordiam suam saluos nos fecit, non secundum merita nostra nobis hanc salu­tem dedit. Then did he saue vs, who by our owne merites deserued perdition. For, this saluation came not from the workes of iustice, which we haue done, because we had done no workes of iustice, by which wee should merite saluation: but hee according to his mercie saued vs, [Page 66] and not according to our merites gaue hee vs this sal­uation.

The famous papist Dionysius Carthusianus, Dionys. in tit. 3. expoundeth Saint Paul euen as Anselmus did. These are his wordes: Non ex operibus iustitiae quae fecimus nos: id est, non propter merita nostra quae nulla fuerunt, quia predictis peccatis eramus obnoxij sed secundam suam misericordiam saluos nos fecit, à potestate diaboli & reatuaeterui tormenti, merito suae conuersations & passionis. Not of the works of righteousnesse which we haue done; that is, not for our merites which were none at all, because we were subiect to the afore named sinnes: but according to his mercie hath he saued vs, from the power of the deuill and guilt of eternall torment, by the merit of his holy conuersation and passion. Loe, our saluation commeth not of mans merits, but of the merits of the sonne of God. This shall suffice for the first reason, which is drawne from the authortiie of holy writ.

The second reason, drawne from the authoritie of the holy fathers.

SAint Austen hath many excellent testimonies in his workes, which doe euidently approoue and confirme this my doctrine, against the popish supposed condigne merit of works; but I will content my selfe, with one or two at this present.Aug. ad Hieron. epist. 29. Thus doth he write; Virtus est charitas, quaid quod diligendū est diligitur: haec in alijs maior, in alijs minor, in alijs nulla est; plenissima vero, quae iam non possit augeri, quandiu hic homo viuit, estin nemine: quandiu autem augeri potest, profecto illud quod minus est quā debit, ex vitio est. Ex quo vitio non est iustus in terra qui faciat bonum, & non peccet. Ex quo vitio, non iustifica­bitur in conspectu Dei omnis viuens. Propter quod vitium, si dixeri­mus quia peccatum non habemus, nos met ipsos seducimus, & veritas in nobis non est. Propter quod etiam quantum libet p [...]ofecerimus, ne­cessarium est nobis dicere; dimitte nobis debita nostra, cum iam omnia in baptismo dicta, facta, cogitata, dimissa sint. Charitie is a vertue, with which we lout that that ought to be lo­ued. This in some is more, in others lesse, in others none [Page 67] at all; but the perfect charitie, which cannot be increa­sed while a man here liueth, is found in none: so long as it can be increased, that doubtlesse which is lesse then it should be, proceedeth of sinne; by reason of which sinne, there is not one iust vpon earth, that doth good and sin­neth not: by reason of which vice, if we say we haue no sinne, we deceiue our selues, and the truth is not in vs: by reason of which sinne, how much soeuer we profit, yet must we say of necessitie. Forgiue vs our trespasses, euen after that all our thoughts, words, and workes, are forgi­uen in baptisme. Thus writeth Saint Austen, that migh­tie piller of Christs Church: out of whose most golden wordes, I note sundrie excellent documents to the great comfort of the faithfull, and to the euerlasting confusi­on of all impenitent papists. For first Saint Austen saith, that no man can haue charitie in that perfect degree, which the law requireth. Secondly, that the want there­of, proceedeth of that vice that is inherent in vs. Third­lie, that by reason of this vice, euery man is a sinner. Fourthly, that by reason thereof, none liuing can be iusti­fied in Gods sight. Fiftly, that by reason thereof, who­soeuer saith he hath no sinne, is a flat lier. Sixtly, that how vertuously soeuer we liue, yet must we desire God to forgiue vs our sinnes, by reason of this inherent vice. Seauenthly, that we must thus pray, euen after all sinnes be forgiuen vs in our baptisme.

Againe,August. in epist. Joan. tract. 4. tom. 9. the same Saint Austen in another place hath these wordes; Iustitia modo nostra ex fide, iustitia perfecta non est nisi in angelis, & vixin angelis si Deo comparentur; tamen si qua perfecta iustitia anim arum & spirituum est, quos Deus creauit, in angelis sanctis, iustis, bonis, nullo lapsu auersis, nulla superbia ca­dentibus, sed manentibus semper in contemplatione verbi Dei, & nihil aliud dulce habentibus, nisi à quo creati sunt, in ipsis perfecta iusti­tia est, in nobis autem ex fide coepit esse secundum spiritum. Our iustice is now of faith, there is no perfect iustice but in the angels, and scarce in the angels, if they be compared to God. Yet if there be any perfect iustice of soules and spi­spirits [Page 68] which God hath created in the holy Angels, iust, good, by no lapse auerted, by no pride falling, but euer abiding in the contemplation of the word of God, and thinking nothing sweet, but him onely which created them: in them iustice is perfect, but in vs (it is not perfect) it is onely begun of faith according to the spirit. Thus saith Saint Austen, telling vs very plainely, that there is no perfect iustice in man: but doubtlesse, where no per­fect iustice is, there can be no condigne merite of eter­nall life.

S. Ambrose is consonant to S. Austen, Ambros. lib. 10. epist. 84. tom. 3. who writeth in this manner: Caro contra spiritum, & contra carnem spiritus concu­piscit; nec inuenitur in vllo hominum tant a concordia, vt legi mentis lex quae membris est insita, non repugnet. Propter quod ex omnium sanctorum persona accipitur, quod Ioannes Apostolus ait; si dixerimus quoniam peccatum non habemus, nos ipsos seducimus, & verit as in no­bis non est. The flesh (saith S. Ambrose) coueteth against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh: neither can there be found in any man such concord or agreement, that the law which is ingrafted in the members, fighteth not a­gainst the law of the mind. And for that cause Saint Iohns words are taken as spoken in the person of all Saints; If we say we haue no sinne, we deceiue our selues, and there is no truth in vs.

Thus writeth S. Ambrose; out of whose words I note first, that concupiscence mooueth rebellion against the spirit, in the holiest man vpon earth. Secondly, that this rebelli­on is sinne in euery one: for S. Iohn speaketh of sinne in­deed. Thirdly, that no man liuing is free from sinne; and consequently, that none liuing in this pilgrimage of mor­talitie, can condignely merite eternall life.

S. Chrysostome is consonant to S. Ambrose and S. Austen: these are his words; Etsi millies moriamur, Chrysost. de con­punct. cord. lib. 2. nom. 5. col. 592. etsi omnes virtutes animi expleamus, nibil dignum gerimus adea, quae ipsi percepimus à deo. Though we die a thousand times, and though we ac­complish all vertues of the mind; yet doe we nothing worthie of those things which we receiue of God.

[Page 69] Theophilact saith in this manner: Seruauit nos aeternum, Theophil. in 3. cap. Tit. non ex operibus quae fecimus, hoc est, ne (que) secimus opera iustitiae, ne (que) per haec conseruati sumus, sed vniuersam salutem bonit as ipsius at (que) elementia operata est. He hath saued vs eternally, not of the works which we haue done, that is, neither haue we done the workes of iustice, neither are we saued by them, but his goodnesse and his clemencie hath wrought our salua­tion wholly.

Now, to knit vp this reason with all consents in one, I will here set downe the flat and plaine report of a famous Frier and popish bishop, in that booke which he dedica­ted to Pope Sixtus the fift:Iosephus Angles in 2. lib. s. pag. 103. Post humillim am sanctorum pedum deosculationem. These are the words: Eodem etiam modo consi­derantes omnes alij doctores sancti naturalem solum modo bonorum operum valorem, & illum à valore & iusta vitae aeterae aestimatione longissimè distare perpendentes, prudenter dixerunt, opera nostra non esse meritoria aut digna vita aeterna. Ex lege tamen, siue conuenti­one, siue promissione facta nobiscum, opera bona hominis cum adiu­torio gratiae dei fiunt aeternae vitae digna, & illi aequalia; quae seclusa illa dei promissione, quae passim in sacris literis reperitur, fuissent tanto premio prorsus indigna. Loe, this Frier granteth, that all the holy fa­thers are a­gainst the pa­pists. All other holy doctors also, conside­ring after the same manner the naturall value onely of good workes, and perceiuing that it is exceeding farre di­stant from the value and iust estimation of eternall life, said wisely, That our works are not meritorious nor wor­thie of eternall life. Yet for the couenant and promise made vnto vs, the good workes of man with the helpe of Gods grace, are worthy of eternall life, and equall with it; which for all that, that promise of God which is frequent in the Scripture, set aside, were altogether vnworthie of so great reward.

Thus saith our popish bishop, our holy Frier, euen to the Pope himselfe, after the humble kissing of his most holy feet. VVho though he bestirre himselfe more than a little, to establish the condigne merite of mans workes, yet doth he in his owne kind of dispute and reasoning; vt­terly confute and confound himselfe. For first, he graun­teth, [Page 70] that not onely S. Chrysostome, but all the rest of the ho­ly fathers with him (marke well, gentle reader) affirme constantly and vniformely with one voice and assent (a testimonie almost incredible to proceed from the mouth of a papist, so deere to the Pope) That good workes nei­ther are meritorious nor worthie of eternall life. Second­ly, he graunteth freely, that the best workes considered in their owne nature and kind, are vnworthy of eternall life. Thirdly, he graunteth willingly, and telleth the Pope roundly (post deosculationem pedum, but after the kissing of his feet) that good workes, euen as they proceed of grace and assistance of the holyghost,The papists grant as much as we desire. are for all that altogether vnworthie of eternall life, if Gods promise and free accep­tation be set apart. VVhich three points doubtlesse, are all that we desire to be graunted, concerning the doctrine of good workes. And consequently, though the papists neuer cease to impeach, accuse, slaunder, and condemne vs in this behalfe: yet doe we defend nothing herein (as is euident to the indifferent reader) but euen that which their owne best doctors in their printed bookes doe teach vs; yea, in those very bookes which are dedicate to the Pope himselfe, and that with the solemne and religious deosculation of his holy feet. The conceits which bishop Frier Ioseph alledgeth, to make good his imagined condign merite of workes, are very childish and too too friuolous. For first, where he saith, that the fathers speake of good workes, onely in respect of their naturall value, as he tear­meth it; I answere, that that silly glosse is onely inuented by him and his fellowes, to saue the life of their beggerly doctrine, if it would be. For no such thing can be found in any one of all their bookes. Nay, our Frier bishop confu­teth himselfe vnawares (of such force is the truth) when he graunteth, that good workes done in grace are vtterly vnworthie of heauen, if Gods promise bee set apart. Where I wish the reader to obserue seriously the word (prorsus, vtterly) which is indeed his owne, and most em­phaticall against himselfe.

[Page 71] Their highly renowned Abbot and cononized saint Bernardus shall tell them the truth, and giue the vpshot of the game:Bernard. serm. 1. in annune. B. M. V. pag. 160. tom. 1. these are his expresse words: Iam vero de aeterna vita scimus, qu [...]non sunt condignae passiones huius temporis ad futu­ram gloriam, nec si vnus omnes sustineat. Ne (que) enim talia sunt homi­num merita, vt propter ea vita aeterna debeatur ex iure, aut deus in­iuriam aliquam faceret, nisi eam donaret. Now touching eternall life, we know that the sufferings of this time are not wor­thie of the glorie to come; no, not if one man could su­staine all. For the merits of men are not such, that for them eternall life is due by right, or that God should doe some iniurie, if he gaue it not.

The same Bernard in another place hath these expresseBernard. in eam. serm. 67. p. 1003 tom. 1. words: Deest gratiae, quicquid meritis deput. 13. Nolo meritum, quod gratiam excludat. Horreo quicquid de meo est, vt sim meus; nist quod illud magis forsit an meum est, quod me meum facit. Gratiae reddit memihi iustificatum gratis, & sie liberatum à seruitute pec­cats. It derogateth from grace, whatsoeuer thou ascribest to merite. I will haue no merite that excludeth grace. I abhorre whatsoeuer is of mine owne, that I may be mine owne, vnlesse perchance that is more mine owne which maketh me mine owne. Grace iustifieth me to my selfe freely, and so deliuereth me from the bondage of sinne.

The same Bernard in another place hath these expresse words:Bernard. in cant. set. 68. p. 1006. Sic non est, quod iam quaeras quibus meritis speremus bona, presertim cum audias apud prophetam; non propter vos, sed propterme ego faciam, dicit dominus. Sufficit admeritum, scire quod non suffi­ciant merita. Sed vt ad meritum satis est, demeritis non presumere; sic carere meritis, satis ad iudicium est. So there is no cause, that thou shouldest now aske by what merits we hope for glorie, especially, since thou hearest the prophet say, I will doe it, saith the Lord, not for your sake, but for mine owne. It is sufficient to merite, to know that our merites are not sufficient. But as it is ynough to merite, not to presume of merites, so to want merites, is ynough to iudgement.

Out of the most excellent testimonies of this famous [Page 72] papist, I note many worthie lessons for the benefit of the reader. First, that nothing which man can doe or suffer in this life, is worthie of the ioies of heauen. Secondly, that heauen is not due to any man for his owne deserts. Third­ly, that God should doe no man wrong, no, not the best liuer on earth, if he should debarre him from the ioyes of heauen. Fourthly, that whatsoeuer is ascribed to mans merite, the same is derogatorie to Gods grace. Fiftly, that Bernard renounceth all merit, which excludeth grace, that is to say, all merit of mans workes whatsoeuer: for so himselfe expoundeth himselfe. Sixtly, that he abhorreth whatsoeuer is his owne, and so he denieth any thing with­in himselfe to be meritorious, or worthie of eternall life. Seuenthly, that the most sufficient merit in man, is this, viz. to know and confesse, that our merits are no merits indeed. Eightly, that to want merits, is ynough for mans condemnation. VVhich last obseruation doth fitly ex­pound that which I vttered in the beginning of this arti­cle, to wit, that the word (merit) in that sence in which the fathers vse it, is not to be reiected, though in these our daies it commonly be abused. For to want merits in their sence (as Bernard here declareth euidently) is to haue no good workes: which good works I affirme willingly, both with the old and late writers of best account, to be so ne­cessarie to attaine eternall life, as the vsuall, ordinarie, and vndoubted means, by which God decreed from eternitie freely for his owne name sake, to bring his chosen and e­lect to saluation; that without the same, none haue beene, are, or shall be saued world without end; if, as I said in the beginning, time be graunted to doe them.

The third reason, drawne from the doctrine of best approoued Papists, and their renowned schoole-doctors.

THomas Aquinas (whose doctrine no papist may gaine­say or refuse) hath these expresse words: Aquinas, 12. q. 114. art. 1. in corp. Manifestum est autem, quod inter deum & hominem est maxima inaequalitas, in infinitum enim distant; totum quod est hominis bonum, est à deo; [Page 73] vnde non potest hominis à deo esse iustitia secundum absolutam aequa­litatem, sed secundum proportienem quandam; in quantum scilicet vter (que) operatur secundum modum suum. Modus autem & mensura humanae virtutis homini est à Deo, & ideo meritū hominis apud deum esse non potest, nisi secundum presuppositionem diuinae ordinationis; ita scilicet, vt id homo consequatur à Deo persuam operationem quasi mercedem, ad quod Deus ei virtute operandi destinauit. It is mani­fest, that between God and man there is exceeding great inequalitie, as which doe differ in infinit; all the good that man hath, is of God. VVherefore mans iustice receiued of God, cannot be according to absolute equalitie, but af­ter a certaine proportion, to wit, in as much as either wor­keth according to his condition. Now, man hath the mea­sure and condition of his vertue from God; and therefore mans merit cannot be with God, saue onely according to the supposall of Gods holy ordinance; so forsooth, that man may attaine that at Gods hand by his working, as a reward, to which God hath designed to him the facultie and power of working.

Thus writeth their grand master papist Aquilias, who vtterly ouerthroweth all popish merit, as it is this day de­fended and beleeued in the Church of Rome. For first Aquinas telleth vs (marke well, for this is a weightie point) that where there is not perfect equalitie, there can be no merit properly. Secondly, he graunteth freely, that there is infinit inequalitie betweene God and man, as euery child knoweth to be true. Thirdly, he freely confesseth, that mans iustice is not absolute, but imperfect. Fourthly, he graunteth willingly, that man doth merit nothing in Gods sight, saue onely by way of his free acceptation. Fiftly, he confesseth in like manner, that eternall life is not properly hire, but as it were hire, quasi mercedem; and that, by reason of the same free acceptation.

Durandus, Durand. in 2. s. dist. 27. q. 2. in med. a very famous popish Schoole-doctor, hath these expresse words: Tale meritum de coniligno inuenitur inter homines, sed non est hominis ad deum. Quod patet, qu [...] quod redditur potius ex libe alitate dantis, quam ex debito operis, non cadit sub me­rito [Page 74] de condigno strictè & propriè accepto. Sequitur; quod si quis di­cat, quod quamuis deus non constituatur nobis deb tor ex aliquo no­stro opere, constituitur tamen debitor ex sua promissione, quam expri­mit scripturu; non valet propter duo. Primū est, quod promissio diuina in scripturis sanctis non sonat in aliquam oblig ationem, sed insinuat meram dispositionem liber alitatis diuinae. Secundū est, quod quod red­ditur, non redditur ex debito operis, sed ex promissione precedente; non quod redditur ex merito operis de condigne, sed solum vel princi­paliter ex promisso. Et it a non est illud debitum, de quo loquimur. Et sic patet, quod meritum de condigno strictè & propriè sumptum, viz. pro actione voluntaria, propter quam oper anti debetur merces ex iu­stitia, sic quod si non reddatur, ille ad quem pertinet reddere, iniustè facit, & est simpliciter & propriè iniustus, non est hominis ad deum. Et ideo propter tale meritum, cum sit homini simpliciter impossibile, non est necesse in nobis ponere gratiam, vel charitatem habitualem. Such condigne merit is found among men, but is not be­tweene God and man. VVhich hereby is cleere, because that which is rendered rather of the liberalitie of the gi­uer, than of debt due to the worke, falleth not vnder con­digne merit, properly so called. If any say, that though God become not our debtor by reason of our worke, yet is he made our debtor by reason of his promise, which the Scripture expresseth: that answere is of no force for two respects. First, because Gods promise in the Scriptures doth not sound to any bond, but insinuateth the meere disposition of Gods liberalitie. Secondly, because that which is giuen, is not giuen for the debt arising of the worke, but of promise that went before; not that it is ren­dered for the condigne merit of the worke, but onely or principally for his promise sake. And so there is not that debt of which we speake. So then it is cleere, that con­digne merit, properly so called, viz. for a voluntarie acti­on, for which reward is due of iustice to the worker, so that if it be not rendered, he to whom it appertaineth to giue it, doth vniustly, and is simply and properly vniust, is not betweene God and man. And therefore for such a merit, seeing it is simply impossible to man, there is no need to [Page 75] put in vs grace or charitie habituall. Thus saith M. Du­rand; out of whose words I note first, that condigne merit cannot be betweene God and man. Secondly, that eter­nall life is giuen of Gods free liberalitie, not of any dutie due to the works that we doe. Thirdly, that God rewar­deth vs principally for his promise sake, and not for any thing we either haue done or can doe. Fourthly, that con­digne merit is so farre aboue mans capacitie, that no man can by any possibilitie haue it. And consequently, that late popish doctrine is impossible.

Gregorius Ariminensis, Apud Ioseph. Angl. in 2. s. dist. 27. ar. 2. p. 105. Marsilius, Thomas Waldensis, Paulus Burgensis, and Eckius, fiue most zealous papists, doe all with one assent affirme very constantly, that mans works are not meritorious of eternall life, how holy soeuer the man be.

Dominicus Soto a zealous monke and famous popish wri­ter,Soto, de nat. & grat. lib. 3. cap. 6. pag. 138. telleth the papists roundly, and teacheth them graue­ly, that no pure man is able to make condigne satisfacti­on for his sinnes; and so à fortiori, against his will and mea­ning, that no man can by condigne merit attaine eternall life. These are his expresse words; Perfecta satisfactio est illa, cuius valor & pretiū totū emanat à debitore, nulla vel p [...]ueniente, vel interueniente gratia creditoris; taliter vt sit redditio aequiualētis alias indebiti voluntaria. Perfect satisfaction is that, whose value and price proceedeth whollie from the debtour, without either preuenting or interuenting grace of the creditour; so as the voluntarie reddition be of that which is equiua­lent, and not otherwise due. This is true doctrine which our frier Soto deliuereth to the world: hee teacheth vs foure things. First, that the satisfaction must proceed wholie from the debtour. Secondly, that there must be no preuenting nor interuenting grace of the creditour. Thirdly, that there must be equiualent restitutiō. Fourth­ly, that that equiualent reddition must be a worke, which is otherwise not due. These foure conditions (which our popish M. Soto and Dominican frier requireth in euery satis­faction) when any papist can find in any one of their me­rits [Page 76] or satisfactions, I will be their bondman, neither shall the popes holines be excepted. But to come to this bon­dage vpon this couenant, I am in no feare at all: For the ethnicke philosopher Aristotle, Aristo. in 8. ethic. cap. 7. perceiued by the naturall discourse of right reason, That no man can euer make cō ­digne compensation to God and his naturall parents. For which respect,Aquinas, 12. q. 114. ar. 1. 3. m. Aquinas affirmeth constantly, that God is not simply and truely said to be debtor to vs, but to himselfe and to his owne promise, which he freely with­out all our deserts made vnto vs. And their great schoole-doctour Iosephus Angles, after he hath disputed this questi­on of condigne merit too and fro, pro & contra, doth in the end though vnawares,Iosephus An­gles, in 2. sent. pag. 107. plainely confesse the selfe same doctrine, that I now intend to prooue. He telleth vs for­sooth, that the price of euery thing may be equall to the value and worth of the same thing, two wayes; first, of the nature of the thing; secondly, of the pact, couenant and promise of him that doth promise the same thing: for saith he, if one penny be the full value answereable to the labour; yet if a greater reward be promised, which farre exceedeth the worth & value of the work wrought, then that reward is also due by couenant. He addeth the reason thereof; viz. because the law of nature teacheth to keepe promises which farre exceed the value of the thing. And hereupon this great learned doctour conclu­deth roundly, that though our good workes come farre short of eternall life, if we respect the worthinesse there­of: yet doe they condignely merit the ioyes of heauen, if we respect the free promise of Christ Iesus. And this con­dignitie of workes, our frier bishop, or bishopfrier, (as you will) calleth aequalitas ex promissione tantum, equalitie of pro­mise onely. Now, I pray thee gentle reader, what childish wit is not able to penetrat the very bowels of this deepe diuinitie? and yet is it the maine point and onely foun­dation, to which all papists doe and must appeale, in this weighty and most important question. For example sake, if thou wouldest wish me to lend thee my cloake, to de­fend [Page 77] thee from a showre of raine, and promise to giue me an hundred pounds for the loane; then doubtlesse were it true to say, that after such loane an hundreth pounds were due vnto me: yet withall would it be most true also, that such loane of my cloake were not the condigne me­rit of that hundreth pounds; but that it proceeded prin­cipally of the free gift and promise made vnto me, farre aboue my merit and desert: neither could my act be any way rightly tearmed, the condigne merit of that reward. And yet it is euident, that thus standeth the state of the question, betweene the condigne merit of mans workes, and the excellencie of the ioyes of heauen. For I willing­ly graunt, that eternall life is due to the workes of Gods elect, and that it is as well the crowne of iustice, as of mer­cie: but withall I constantly affirme,2. Tim. 4. v. 8. that God bestoweth it on his elect freely for his owne name sake,Iac. 1. v. 12. and not for any merit,Rom. 8. v. 18. worthinesse, or condignitie of their workes.

For this cause,Rom. 6. v. 23. their owne deere frier Ioannes de Combis, Ps. 103. v. 4. teacheth this golden lesson:Ps. 145. v. 9. Meritum condigni dicit aequalita­tem meriti ad remunerationem: Iac. 2. v. 83. dico autem aequalitatem, non arith­meticam, sed geometrieam: Joan. de Combis lib. 5. theolog. verit. cap. 11. id est, non quantitatis, sed proportionis. Et hoc patet, quia Deus semper remunerat supra meritum, sicut punit citra condignum. Condigne merit doth connotat the equalitie of merit, to the thing that is merited; I say equa­litie, not arithmeticall, but geometricall, that is, not of quantitie, but of proportion: And this is euident, because God euer rewardeth aboue our merits, as he punisheth lesse than we deserue. Out of these wordes we see two things cleered: the one, that we deserue greater punish­ment for our sinnes, than God inflicteth vpon vs for the same: the other, that for our well doing we receiue grea­ter reward, than our workes doe or can deserue. And consequently, that wee doe not condignely merit eter­nall life.

For this cause saith their famous popish doctour, Nico­laus de Lyra, in this maner: Salus enim aeterna, Lyra in 3. ca [...]it. excedit totaliter facultatem naturae humanae. Propter quod non potest eam attingere, [Page 78] nisi ex largitate diuinae misericordiae. For eternall life doth farre surmount and wholly exceed the facultie and power of mans nature. VVherefore man can no way attaine vnto it,Carthus. in 6. cap. ad Rom. but onely by the liberalitie of Gods mercy.

For this cause saith another popish doctor, Dionysius Carthusianuns, in this maner: Ex gratia seu per gratiam Dei, da­tur iustis pro praemio vita aeterna. Non hoc dicitur merita exclu­dendo, sed vt insinuctur, quod principaliter ascribendum sit gratia Dei, qui etiam premiat vltra condignum. Eternall life is giuen for reward to the iust, of grace or through the grace of God. This is not said to exclude merits, but to insinuate, that reward must principally bee ascribed to the grace of God, who rewardeth vs aboue our deserts. Loe, this great papist laboreth with maine and might, to stablish popish condigne merit of workes: who affirming more boldly than wisely, that the elect doe merit eternall life; telleth vs with one breath, that the reward is aboue our merits and deserts. And so vnwittingly and vnwillingly he confuteth himselfe, and refelleth that doctrine, which he gladly would confirme.

To conclude, our Iesuit and renowned Cardinall, frier Bellarmine, who after mature deliberation and graue consultation had with all the best learned Iesuits in the world, and with the Pope himselfe (whose faith iudiciall cannot faile, say they) saith all that possibly can be said for the life of poperie, doth with great grauitie and pru­dent sagacitie in the name of all papists, deliuer this do­ctrine vnto vs;Bellarm. de iusti­fie. tom. 3. col. 1296. & col. 1298. Quod vero attinet ad rem ipsam, Durandi senten­tia, si nihil aliud vellet, nisi merita nostra non esse ex condigno, siue ex iustitia absolutè, sed tantum ex hypothesi, id est, posita liberali Dei promissione, non esset reprobanda, sequitur; respondeo, absolutè non posse hominem á Deo aliquid exigere, cum omnia sint ipsius; ta­men posita eius voluntate & pacto, quo non vult exigere à nobis opera nostra gratis, sed mercedem reddere iuxta proportionem operum, verè possumus ab eo mercedem exigere; quomodo seruus non potest absolutè a domino suo vllum premium postulare, cum omnia quae seruus acquirit, domino suo acquirat; tamen si domino placeat do­nare [Page 79] illi opera sua, & pro ijsdem tanquam sibi non debitis mercedem promittere, iure mercedem pro suis operibus postulabit. Touching the matter it selfe, Durands opinion, if he had no other meaning, but that our merits are not absolutely iust and condigne, but hypothetically in respect of Gods liberall promise, were not to be reiected: I answere, that man cannot absolutely exact any thing of God, seeing all things are Gods owne; neuerthelesse, his will and coue­nant being made, that he will not exact our workes of vs freely, but will reward them according to their proporti­on: we may truly require hyer of him, like as a bondman cannot absolutelie require any reward of his lord, seeing euery thing which the bondman gaineth, is gotten and gained to his master: yet for all that, if it shall please his master and lord to bestow his works on him, and to pro­mise reward for the same, as if they were not due vnto him, then may the bondseruant iustly demaund reward for his workes.

Thus saith the Iesuit Bellarmine; and consequently, this is all that all papists say, or can say, for the life of po­pish doctrine. Out of whose wordes I note first, that his brother Durands opinion hath put him to his best trumpe. Secondly, that Durands opinion (as is already prooued) is this; viz. that the merit of workes in the best liuer vp­on earth, cannot truly and properly be called meritum ex condigno, condigne merit; but onely merit in way of ac­ceptation, and in respect of Gods free mercy, and promise made vnto man without all deserts. Thirdly, that Bellar­mine graunteth this opinion in this sense: For hee saith plainely, If Durand admit merit in respect of Gods pro­mise, his opinion cannot be reproued. Fourthly, that our Iesuit maketh good that doctrine, which I here defend, as which is the selfe same, that Durand holdes. And con­sequenly, if Bellarmine and his popish fellowes and follow­ers, would stand constantly to their owne doctrine, which they publish in printed bookes; wee and they should soone agree, and these great controuersies would haue [Page 80] an end. Fourthly, that man cannot absolutely exact any thing at Gods hands, because all things are Gods owne. Fiftly, that in respect of Gods good pleasure and coue­nant frely made to man, we may truely require reward of God. Yea, my selfe graunt, that we may not onely tru­ly, but also iustly require reward at Gods hands, in regard of his promise freely made vnto vs. But I euer denie with­all, that any reward is due to our best workes; for any condigne merit or desert of or in our workes, Gods free acceptation, mercie, and promise set apart. For as Saint Austen grauely saith;Aug. lib. 9. confess. cap. 13. Vae etiam laudabili vitae hominum, si re­mota misericordia discutias eam. Woe euen to the best liuer vpon earth, if thou examine his life, thy mercy set apart. Answere ô papists, if ye can; and if ye cannot, then re­pent, and yeeld vnto the truth for shame. I challenge you, I prouoke you to the combat; I adiure you all ioyntlie, and euery one of you seuerally, for the cre­dite of your cause, for the honour of your Pope, and the life of popish doctrine, which now lieth bleeding, and wil shortly yeeld vp the Ghost, if some soueraigne remedie bee not speedily prouided for the same.

The sixt Article. Of the Po­pish distinction of mortall and veniall sinnes.

ALthough it be true, that all sinnes are not equall, but one greater than another: and although it be also true, that in a good and godly sence, some sinne may be tearmed mortall, and some veniall; which yet may more fitly be called, sinnes regnant, and not regnant: neuer­thelesse most true it is, to the euer­lasting confusion of all impenitent papists, that euery sinne is mortall of it owne nature, and onely veniall by way of Gods free acceptation and mercie, for his owne name sake, and merits of his deare sonne our Lord Iesus.

I prooue it first both briefely and euidently. For Christ himselfe telleth vs in his holy Gospell,Matth. 12. v. 3. that we must giue a straight account of euery idle word in the generall day of iudgement. And for no other end doubtlesse must this account be made, but onely, because euery idle word is flatly against the law of God. This the papists can neuer denie, it is euident to euery child. And yet must they like­wise confesse, that idle words be those sinnes which they call venials. And consequently, they must confesse against their wils, and against their professed Romish doctrine, that all sinnes are mortall, that is to say, against the law of God.

This doctrine of our Sauiour Christ Iesus is confirmed by the testimonie of S. Iohn his beloued Apostle,1. Ioh. 3. v. 4. where he telleth vs, that euery sinne is [...], that is, the transgressi­on [Page 82] of Gods law, as is alreadie prooued at large in the fourth article of concupiscence. And the Hebrew word [...], which signifieth a declining from the right way, doth plainely confirme the same.

Secondly, because our popish Rhemists confesse in plaine tearms,Rhemists in 1. Joh. 3. v. 4. that euery sinne is a swaruing from the law of God. For doubtlesse, that which swarueth from the law, is truly said to be against the law, but not agreeable to the law.

Thirdly, because the famous popish Frier and Romish bishop Iosephus Angles teacheth the same doctrine in his booke dedicated to the Pope himselfe. These are his own expresse words:Iosephus Angles in 4. sent. p. 215. Omne peccatum veniale est alicuius legis trans­gressio. Patet, quia omne veniale est contra rectam rationem, & agere contra rectam rationē, est agere contra legem naturalem, precipientem non esse à regula rectae rationis deuiandum. Euery sinne veniall is the transgression of some law. This is cleere, because euery veniall sinne is against right reason; and to doe a­gainst right reason, is to doe against the law of nature, which commaundeth vs not to depart or swarue from the rule of right reason. Loe, euery veniall sinne is against right reason, and against the law of nature, which is giuen to euery one in his creation, in his birth or natiuitie.

Fourthly, because Durandus, another famous papist, confuteth the late receiued popish opinion of Thomas A­quinas, which the Pope and his Iesuits hold, to wit, that ve­niall sinnes are preter legem, non contra: Besides the law, but not against the law.Duran. in 2. sent. di [...]t. 42. q. 6. These are Du [...]ands owne words: Ad argumentum dicendum, quod omne peccatum est contra legem dei na­turalem, vel inspiratam, vel ab eis deriuatam. To the argument answere must be made, that euery sinne is against the law of God, either naturall, or inspired, or deriued from them. And this opinion of M. Durand, is this day commonly de­fended in the popish vniuersities and schooles. So saith Frier Ioseph, these are his words:Jos. Angl. in 2. s. pag. 275. D. Thomas & eius sectatores tenent, peccatum veniale non tam esse contra legem, quam preter le­gem. Sequitur; Durandus tamen & alij permulti hanc sententiam [Page 83] impugnant, affirmantes peccata venialia esse contra mandata. Et haec opinio modo in scbolis videtur communior. S. Thomas and his followers hold, that a veniall sinne is not so much against the law, as besides the law. But Durand and many others impugne this opinion, auouching veniall sinnes to be a­gainst the commaundements. And this opinion seemeth now adaies to be more common in the schooles.

Here I wish the reader to note by the way, out of the word (modo, now adaies) the mutabilitie of Romish religi­on. For in that he saith (modo, now adaies) he giueth vs to vnderstand, that their doctrine is now otherwise than it was of old and in former ages. A note worthie to be re­membred. For the old Romane religion was catholicke, pure, and sound, and with it doe not I contend: but I im­pugne late Romish faith and doctrine, which the Pope and his Romish Schoole-men haue brought into the Church.

Fiftly, because their canonized martyr Iohn Fisher, the late bishop of Rochester, teacheth the same doctrine so plainely, as euery child must needs perceiue the truth in that behalfe.Roffensis art. 32. a [...]u. Luth. These are his expresse words: Quod peccatum veniale solum ex dei misericordia veniale sit, in hoc tecum sentio. That a veniall sinne is onely veniall through the mercie of God (and not of it owne nature) therein doe I agree vnto you. Thus saith our bishop. And as he telleth me, that he agreeth with Luther therein: so doe I tell our Iesu­ites, that I agree with him, with Durand, Almaine, and the other papists, that teach the same doctrine.

Sixtly, because Gerson, another famous popish writer, holdeth the same opinion. These are his expresse words: Nulla offensa dei est venialis de se, Jo. Gers. de vita spiritual. lect. 1. part. 3. in 1. corol. nisi tantum modo per respectum ad diuinam misericordiam, qui non vult de facto quamlibet offensam imputare ad mortem, cum illud posset iustissimè. Et ita concluditur, quod peccatum mortale & veniale in esse tali, non distinguuntur in­trinsecè & essentialiter, sed solum per respectum ad diuinam grati­am, quae peccatum istud imputat ad poenam mortis, & aliud non. No offence of God is veniall of it owne nature, but onely in [Page 84] respect of Gods mercie, who will not de facto imputa, euery offence to death, though he might doe it most iustly. And so I conclude, that mortall and veniall sinnes, as they be such, are not distinguished intrinse cally and essentially, but onely in respect of Gods grace, which assigneth one sinne to the paine or torture of death, and not another.

Thus writeth this famous popish bishop, who was a man of high esteeme in the counsell of Constance. Whose onely testimonie (if his words be well marked) is able to confound the papists, and to strike them dead. For first he telleth them plainely, that euery sinne is mortall of it owne nature. Secondly, that no sinne is veniall, saue only in respect of Gods mercie. Thirdly, that God may most iustly (iustissimè) condeme vs for the least sinne we do. Note seriously, gentle reader, the word (iustissimè.) Fourthly, that mortall and veniall sinnes are the same intrinse cally and essentially, and differ but accidentally, that is to say, they differ in accident, but not in nature; in quantitie, but not in qualitie; in mercy, but not in deformitie; in the sub­iect, but not in the obiect; in imputation, but not in enor­mitie; saue onely, that the one is a greater mortall sinne than is the other. For (as Gerson auoucheth) we may iustly be damned for the least sinne of all, howsoeuer other pa­pists doe flatter themselues in their cursed deformed venials.

Seuenthly, because sinne in generall is the transgressi­on of Gods law, as S. Ambrose defineth it, yea, euery word, deed, or desire against Gods law, as S. Austen describeth it, Their words are set downe in the fourth article of this discourse.

Eightly, because the Iesuit Bellarmine vnawares confes­seth the same against himselfe. These are his owne words: Respondeo, Bellar. t [...]m. 1. pag. 804. omne peccatum esse contra legem dei, non positiuam, sed aternam, vt Aug. rectè docet. Omnis enim iusta lex, siue à deo, siue ab bomine detur, ab aterna dei lege deriuatur. Est enim aterna lex, vt malum sit viol are regulam. I answere, that euery sinne is a­gainst the law of God, not positiue, but eternall, as Austen [Page 85] teacheth rightly. For euery iust law, whether it be given of God, or of man, is deriued from the eternal law of God. For the eternall law is, that it is euill to offend against the rule. These are our Iesuits owne words, which (as euery child can easily discerne) doe euidently confute himselfe and his Romish doctrine. For first, vnder euery sinne must needs be contained their veniall sinnes, or els some sinnes shall be no sinnes; which implieth flat contradiction. Se­condly, he tel [...]eth vs, that euery sinne, and consequently veniall sinnes are against the eternall law of God. Third­ly, he graunteth, that they are not onely besides the law, sed contra legem, but euen against the law. Fourthly, hence it is cleere and euident, that the law eternall is the chiefe and principall law of all other laws, seeing from it all other lawes are deriued.

Ninthly, because the papists cannot possibly yeeld any sound reason, why in the sinnes of theft one shall be mor­tall, and another veniall. For example sake, let vs suppose one at one time to steale so many egs as will make a mor­tall sinne by Romish doctrine; another at another time to steale so many as will make a venial sinne by the same do­ctrine: then I demaund of our papists, Why God cannot iustly condemne the theefe to hell that stealeth but so ma­ny egs; and for all that can iustly condemne him to eter­nall torment, that stealeth but one only egge aboue the said number. For this must they doe, and a good reason here of must they yeeld (which I am well assured they can neuer do) or els confesse euery sinne to be mortall, and so against their wils to subscribe to mine opinion. Answere ô papists if ye can; if ye cannot then repent for shame, and yeeld vnto the truth.

The seuenth Article. Of po­pish vnwritten traditions.

THe papists beare the world in hand, that many things necessarie for mans saluation, are not conteined in the ho­ly scriptures of the old and new testa­ment: and consequently, that none can be saued, but such as beleeue their vnwritten traditions, and what their Pope telleth them. For the exact knowledge whereof, I put downe these propositions.

The first Proposition, with the first reason.

THe written word or holy scripture, containeth in it selfe, euery doctrine necessarie for mans saluation. I prooue it, by the manifold texts both of the old and new testament; by the authoritie of the holy fathers, and by the the testimonie of renowned and best approoued popish writers.

Ex testamente veteri.

Locus primus. Deut. 4. v. 2. Ye shall not add to the word which I speak vnto you, neither shall ye take any thing away from it. Againe thus,Deut. 12. v. 32. That which I command, that only doe thou to the Lord. Neither add any thing, nor take any thing away.Ios. 1. v. 7. Againe thus, Only be thou strong, and of a valiant courage,Ios. 23. v. 6. that thou mayest obserue and doe according to all the law, which Moses my seruant hath cōmanded thee. Thou shalt not turne away from it, neither to the right hand nor to the left. Bee carefull that ye keepe all things which are written in the booke of the law of Moses; [Page 87] that ye decline not from them, neither to the right hand nor to the left.

By these manifold texts we may see euidently, that the holy scriptures are most perfect, and that nothing may bee taken from them, neither any thing added to them. But doubtlesse, if all doctrine necessarie for mans saluation, were not sufficiently conteined in them, then of necessitie, many things should be added to them. Bellar­mine (the mouth of all papists) answereth to these and the like places, that they are not spoken of the written word precisely,Bellarm. tom. 1. col. 183. A. B. but of Gods word generally, which is partly written, and partly vnwritten. Non ait, inquit ille, ad verbum quod scripsi, sed quod ego precipio. He saith not, (quoth our Ie­suite) to the word which I haue written, but which I com­mand. But doublesse, this is a miserable shift, and a very childish answere. For first, God himselfe wrote his owne wordes in two tables of stone,Deut. 5. 22. and then deliuered them to Moses. Yea, after Moses had broken the said tables, in his vehement zeale against Idolatrie;Deut. 9. 17. God commanded Moses to hew two other tables of stone like to the first, in which he writ againe the wordes that were in the first ta­bles,Deut. 10. v. 1. 4. and commanded Moses to put them vp in an arke of wood.Deut. 1. 5. Secondly, Moses expounded the law of God to the Israelites at large. VVhich large explication of the law, God himselfe commanded him to write,Deut. 31. v. 19. 24. and to giue the same to the Israelites; that they might put it in the side of the arke of the couenant, and there keepe it for a wit­nesse against them. Thirdly, God commanded Iosue to keepe and obserue all things, which were written in the booke of the law,Ios. 1. v. 8. which Moses had deliuered to the Le­uites: charging him to meditate therein day and night, that he might doe according to the same. Fourthly, Moses telleth vs expresly,Deut. 9. v. 10. that the two tables written with the finger of God, contained all the wordes, which the Lord spake to them in the mount out of the midst of the fire, in the day of the assembly. Fiftly, God commanded that the king of the Israelies, so soone as he should be establi­shed [Page 86] [...] [Page 87] [...] [Page 88] in his throne,Deut. 17. v. 18. should write out the Deutronomie (or law repeated) in a book; according to the example, which the priests of the Leuiticall tribe should giue him, that he might meditate therein all the dayes of his life. Sixtly, Iosue made a couenant with the people,Ios. 24. v. 25, 26 and gaue them a law in Sichem, and wrote all the wordes in the booke of the law. VVhich words were nothing else but a repetiti­on of the couenant written by Moses; which couenant Iosue was commanded to obserue so strictly,Ios. 1. v. 7. that he might neither decline to the right hand,Deut. cap. 1. per totum. nor to the left. And the same law contained all those precepts,Deut. 11. 1. ceremonies, and iudgements, which God commanded Moses to teach the people of Israel.

Locus secundus. Ne addas quicquam verbis eius (Dei) ne forte arguat te, & inueniaris mendax. Thou must ad nothing to Gods words,Prou. 30. v. 6. lest he reprooue thee, and thou be found a lier. This text Saint Hierome vnderstandeth of the holy scriptures, to which no man may ad any thing, bee it more, be it lesse. The scriptures therefore are most per­fect and absoute, and containe euery doctrine needfull for vs to know.

Locus tertius. Esa. 8. v. 20. Ad legem magis, & ad testimonium: Quod si non dixerint iuxta verbum hoc, non erit eis matutina lux. To the law, and to the testimonie. If they speake not according to this word, there is no matutine or true light in them,

Loe, they that refuse to be taught of Gods prophet, who is the mouth of God; and seeke helpe at the dead, which is the illusion of Satan; are here reprooued as men void of knowledge, and as blind leaders of the blind. And withall they are charged to seeke remedie in the word of God, where his will is declared. They and wee must euer in all doubts and difficulties, haue continuall recourse to the law of God; which law is here tearmed the testimonie, because it is the testification of Gods will toward man; because there is set downe, what God re­quireth of vs; because we may find in it, whatsoeuer is ne­cessarie for vs to know. For the Prophet ioyneth the testi­monie [Page 89] with the law, not as a thing distinct from it, but as an explication of the same. As if he had said, yee must in all doubts haue recourse to the law of God, because it is the testimonie of his holy will.Hier. in 8. cap. Esa. Saint Hierome yeeldeth the like sense; and interpretation of this place; these are his wordes. Si vultis nosse quae dubia sunt, magis vae legi & testimo­nijs tradite scripturarum. Quia si noluerit vestra congregatio ver­bum domini quoerere, non habebit lucē veritatis, sed versabitur in erroris tenebris. If ye will know the things that are doubt­full, ye must haue recourse to the law, and to the testi­monies of the scriptures. For, if your people will not seeke Gods word, they cannot attaine the light of truth, but shall walke in the darknesse of errour.

Locus quartus. Mementote legis Mosis serui mei, quam man­daui ei in Horeb ad omnem Israel.Mal. 4. v. 4. Remember the law of Moses my seruant, which I commanded to him in Horeb to all Israel. Marke these wordes seriously, because they proue euidently, the question now in hand. For this Malachias being the last of Gods Prophets, and foreseeing by the spirit of God, that the Israelites should bee without Pro­phets a long time, euen till the comming of Christ; doth here exhort them diligently, to be mindfull of the law of Moses. As if he should say; the time is at hand, when ye shall be destitute of Prophets, and therefore yee must marke well what the law saith, and doe according to the prescript rule thereof. But what is the reason, why hee maketh no mention of the Prophets? doubtlesse, because all things (as you haue already heard) are fully compri­sed in the written word of the law. For, although the law and the Prophets were vntill Iohn; Matt. 11. v. 13. the one foretel­ling Christs comming by word, the other by tipes and fi­gures: yet was the doctrine of the Prophets nothing else in deede, but an explication of the law; and consequent­ly, Malachie willing the Israelites to remember the law of Moses, doth thereby sufficiently insinuat the doctrine of the Prophets, as who are nothing else but the interpre­ters of Moses. For from the law they might neither turne [Page 90] to the right hand, nor to the left. That the law contai­neth the whole Christian doctrine, necessarie vnto salua­tion,Lyra. &. Corth. in 23. cap. Mat. two famous. popish doctors (Lyra and Dionisius Car­thusianus,) doe testifie: whose wordes shall be alledged ex­presly, when I come to the places of the new testament.

Ex nouo Testamento.

Locus primus. Ioh 20 v. 30. Haec scripta sunt, &c. These are written, that you may beleeue, that Iesus is Christ the sonne of God: and that in beleeuing yee might haue life through his name. Here the reader must obserue seriously with me, that this Gospell was written after all other scriptures of the old and new testament; euen when the canon of the scriptures was complet, perfect, and fully accompli­shed, viz. almost an hundred yeeres after Christ ascention into heauen, about the fourteenth yeere of the raigne of Domitianus then emperour. VVhich obseruation being well marked, all the sottish cauils of the papists will easi­lie be auoided. Now let vs see, how the auntient fathers doe vnderstand this place of scripture.

Saint Cyrill hath these wordes;Cyrillus lib. 12. in Iohan. cap. vlt. Non omnia quae Dominus fecit, conscripta sunt, sed quae scribentes tam ad mores quam ad dogmata sufficere putarunt; vt recta fide & operibus ad regnum coelorum perueniamus. All things which our Lord did, are not written: but those things onely, which the writers deemed sufficient, as well for manners as for doctrine; that by a right faith and good life, we may attaine the kingdome of heauen.

Saint Austen hath these wordes;Aug. in. Iohan. tract. 49. tom. 9. in initio, Cum multa fecisset domi­nus, non omnia scripta sunt: electa sunt antem quae scriberentur, que saluti credentium sufficere videbantur. VVhen our Lord had done many things, all were not written; but so much was chosen out to be written, as was thought to be suffici­ent for the saluation of the faithfull.

Loe, gentle reader, so much is comprised in the holy scriptures, as is necessarie for our saluation, as well in those things which concerne our life and manners, as in things concerning faith and doctrine. VVhich if the papists will [Page 91] graunt vs, they may keepe their vnwritten traditions, vn­till Gods people haue need thereof. For I see not, why they should enforce vs to admit them, except they were necessarie, either for faith, or at the least for good maners: both which notwithstanding, not the scriptures onely, but the fathers also doe denie.

Locus secundus. Non enim subterfugi, Act. 20. v. 27. quo minus annuntiarum vobis omne consilium Dei. For I haue not spared to shew vn­to you, the whole counsell of God. This portion of scrip­ture, is vnderstood of things pertaining to our saluation; as two famous popish writers, Nicholaus Lyranus and Dyoni­sius Carthusianus, doe contest with me.

Carthusiauus hath these wordes;Carthus. in 20. cap. act. apost. Sed cum alibi scriptum sit; quis consiliarius eius fuit? sapiens quo (que) dixerit; quis homini poterit scire consilium Dei; quomodo potuit Paulus omne consilium Dei annuntiare hominibus? & respondendum, quod non simpliciter de omni consili [...] Dei intendit, sed de omni consilio Dei, quantum ad humanam spectai salutem. Quemadmodum etiam ait saluator; Rom. 11. 34. sap. 9. om­nia audiui à patre meo, nota feci vobis. But seeing it is written else where; who hath beene his counseller? and seeing the wise man also saith; what man can know the counsell of God? how could Paul shew vnto men, all the counsell of God? answere must bee made, that he meaneth not simply of all the counsell of God; but of all the counsell of God, so farre foorth as appertaineth to mans saluation. As our sauiour also saith; all things which I heard my fa­ther, I haue notified vnto you.

Lyra teacheth the very same doctrine,Lyra. in 20. cap. act. apost. I omit his words, for the regard I haue to breuitie. By whose iudgement it is most euident, that the whole counsell of God touching our saluation, is contained in the holy Scriptures. And it will not helpe the papists to answere or say, that all the counsell of God was preached, but not written. For first, the Apostle saith, he was called to be an Apostle, seuered into the Gospell of God,Rom. 1. which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy Scriptures. Secondly, he auou­cheth plainely, that he taught none other things than [Page 92] those which the prophets and Moses did say should come to passe.Act. 26. v. 22. Thirdly, Lyranus and Carthusianus, two renowmed papists, tell vs, that all necessarie doctrine is contained in the precepts of loue. Carthusianus hath these words: Om­nia precepta, Carthus. in 22. cap. Matt. documenta, & hortamenta legis ac prophetarum, ordi­nantur ad horum obseruantiam mandatorum, & virtualiter conti­nentur in cis, sicut conclusiones in primis principijs. All precepts, documents, and exhortations of the law and the prophets are ordained to the keeping of these cōmandements, and are virtually contained in them, as conclusions in the first principles.

Lyranus hath these words:Lyra in 22. cap. Matt. Propter hoc omnia mandata legis & monitiones, non sunt nisi quaedam explicationes istorum duorum mandatorū. Quia omnia ordinantur ad dilectionem dei & proximi; & similiter doctrina prophetarum ad hoc ordinatur. For this cause all the commandements of the law, and all admonitions, are nothing els but certaine explications of these two commaundements. Because all things are ordained to the loue of God and of our neighbour: and in like man­ner, the doctrine of the prophets is referred to the same end.

Fourthly, the Iesuit Bellarmine telleth vs, that the books of the prophets and Apostles are the infallible rule of faith.Bellar. tom. 1. col. 2. These are his expresse words: Illud in primis statuen­dum erit, Propheticos & Apostolicos libros iuxta mentem ecclesiae Cath. & olim in Conc. 3. Carthag. & nuper in Conc. Trid. expli­catam, verum esse verbum dei, & certam ac stabilem regulam fidei. This must be set downe for a ground and sure foundati­on, that the bookes of the prophets and Apostles, accor­ding to the mind of the Catholike Church declared afore­time in the third counsell of Carthage, and of late in the counsell of Trent, is the true word of God, and the sure and stable rule of our faith.

The same Iesuit in another place hath yet more mani­fast and cleere words,Bellar. tom. 1. col. 4. which are these: Quare cum sacra scrip­tura regula credendi certissima tutissima (que) sit, sanus profecto non erit, qui ea neglecta spiritus interni [...]soepe fallacis, & semper incerti iudi­cio [Page 93] se commiserit. VVherefore, seeing the holy Scripture is the most certaine and most secure rule of faith, he is not well in his wits doubtlesse, who hauing neglected the same, shall commit himselfe to the iudgement of the in­ternall spirit, which often deceiueth, and neuer is sure or found.

These words of our Iesuiticall Cardinall (if they be well marked) will not onely confound himselfe, who els­where teacheth the contrarie doctrine, but also euidently proue the controuersie now in hand. For first, he saith, that the bookes of the Apostles and Prophets rightly expoun­ded, are the infallible rule of faith. Secondly, that the holy Scripture is the most safe and most secure rule how to be­leeue. Thirdly, that he is mad, whosoeuer will giue credit to the inward spirit, and not stay himselfe vpon the writ­ten word. All which doubtlesse confound him and his Iesuiticall broode; as who will not relie vpon the writ­ten testimonies of Gods truth, but seeke after vnwritten falshoods and vanities, and ground their faith vpon the same.

Fiftly, S. Austen teacheth the selfesame truth, when he telleth vs flatly, that nothing is contained in the Gospell and epistles of the Apostles, which is not also comprised in the law and the Prophets. These are his expresse words: In eo tanta praedicatio & prenuntiatio noui testamenti est, August. contra Adimant. cap. 3. tom. 6. pag. 121. vt nulla in euangelica at (que) Apostolica disciplina reperiantur, qua [...]uis ardua & diuina proecepta & promissa, quae illis etiam libris veteribus de­sint. In the old testament, the new testament is so largely preached and foreshewed, that nothing can be found in the discipline or doctrine of the Gospell and of the Apo­stles, although they be hard and diuine precepts and pro­mises, which are wanting in those old bookes. This being so, it followeth of necessitie, that all things needfull to saluation, are contained in the Scriptures. For S. Paule preached all the counsell of God; S. Paules preachings are contained in the doctrine of the prophets; the doctrine of the prophets is contained in the law; the law was writ­ten [Page 94] with the finger of God; Ergo à primo ad vltimum, all things necessarie for our saluation, are contained in the written word of God.

Locus tertius. Because from thine infancie thou hast knowne the holy Scriptures, [...]. VVhich are able to make thee wise vnto saluatiō,2. Tim. 3. v. 15. throgh faith which is in Christ Iesus. Thus saith S. Paul. But doubt­lesse, if so much be written as is able to make vs wise to saluation; we stand in need of no more, it is ynough. Let the papists keepe their vnwritten traditions to them­selues, let vs relie vpon the written truth. Let vs be wise vnto saluation, contenting our selues with that which it pleased God to reueale in his written word, and let them be presumptuous and curious to follow mans inuentions, and to beleeue vnwritten vanities.

The second reason, drawne from the authoritie of the holy Fathers.

DIonysius Areopagita, who liued in the daies of the Apo­stles,De diuinis no­minib. cap. 1. in initio. doth liuely deliuer this truth vnto vs in these expresse words: Omnino igitur non audendum est, quicquam de summa abstrusa (que) diuinitate aut dicere aut cogitare, praeter ea quae nobis diuinitus scripturae diuinae countiarunt. In no wise therfore may we make bold to speake or thinke any thing of the most high and ineffable diuinitie, saue that only which ho­ly writ hath reuealed to vs from heauen.

S. Augustine, that glistering beame and strong pillar of Christs church, auoucheth plainely, that all things neces­sarie for our saluation are contained in the written word, as is alreadie prooued in the former reason: and he con­firmeth the same doctrine in another place, where he hath these expresse words: In his enim quae apertè in scriptura posita sunt, Aug. de doctrina Christ. li. 2. cap. 6 & cap. 9. tom. 3. inueniunter illa omnia, quae continent fidem mores (que) viuendi; spem scilicet at (que) charitatem. For in those things which are plainely set downe in the holy Scripture, all things are found which containe faith and manners, that is to say, hope and charitie.

[Page 95] The same S. Austen in another place hath these expresse words: Credo quod etiam hinc diuinorum eloquiorum clarissima au­thoritas esset, Aug. de peccat. merit. & remiss. lib. 2. cap. vlt. tom. 7. si homo sine dispendio promissae salutis illud ignorare non posset. I beleeue, that euen in this point also we should haue most cleere testimonie of holy writ, if a man could not be ignorant thereof, without the losse of his sal­uation.

S. Irenaeus hath these words: Non emim per alios dispositio­nem salutis nostrae cognouimus, Irenae. li. 3. cap. 1 quam per eos, per quos euangelium peruenit ad nos; quod quidem tunc preconiauerunt, postea vero per dei voluntatem in scripturis nobis tradiderunt, fundamentum & columnam fidei nostrae futurum. For we know the dispensation of our saluation, by them onely by whom the Gospell came to our hands, which Gospell they first preached: but afterward by Gods appointment they deliuered the same vnto vs in writing, that it might be the foundation and pillar of our faith.

Tertullianus an auncient writer,Tertullian. con­tra Hermogen. pag. 373. (who liued aboue 1300 yeeres agoe) hath these expresse wordes; Adoro scripturae plenitudinem, quae mihi & factorem manifestat, & facta. An autem ex aliqua subiacenti materia facta sint omnia, nusquam adhuc legi. Scriptum esse doceat Hermogenis offiicina: si non est scriptum, ti­meat vae illud adijcientibus aut detrahentibus destinatum. I reue­rence the plenitude, fulnesse, and perfection of the scrip­ture; as which sheweth to me, both the maker, and the things which are made. But that all things are made of some subiacent matter, I neuer could yet read any where. Let Hermogenes his shop shew vs, where it is written. If it be no where written, let him be afraid of that woe which is prouided for them that adde or take away from the Scripture.

Loe (gentle reader) these three most auntient fathers doe teach vs many very excellent documents. First, that we know the dispensation of our saluation by Christs A­postles. Secondly, that we receiued the Gospell from them. Thirdly, that they first preached the mysteries of our saluation, deliuering the Gospell by word of mouth. [Page 96] Fourthly, that afterward they committed the same to writing. Fiftly, that the Scripture was written by Gods owne appointment. Sixtly, that it was written for this end and purpose, That it might be the pillar and foundati­on of our faith. Seuenthly, that we may not speake or thinke any thing of God, which we find not written in Gods booke. Eightly, that the holy Scripture is perfect, and containeth all things necessarie for vs to know. Ninthly, that all such as teach or beleeue any doctrine not contained in the Scriptures, must drinke of the cup of eternall woe for their paines. Let vs proceed and see, what other fathers of later times tell vs.

S. Cyprian (who liued about 249 yeares after Christ,Cyprian ep 74. ad Pompeium. cont. epist. Steph. col. 229. viz. aboue 1300 yeares agoe) hath these words: Vnde ista traditio? Vtrumne de dominica & euangelica authoritate descendens, an de Apostolorum mandatis & epistolis veniens? Ea enim facien­da esse quae scripta sunt, deus testatur, & proponit ad Iesum Nave dicens; Non recedet liber legis huius ex ore tuo, sed meditaberis in eo die ac nocte, vt obserues facere omnia quae scripta sunt in eo. Si ergo aut euangelio precipitur, aut in Apostolorum epistolis, aut astibus continetur, obseruetur diuina haec & sancta traditio. From whence came this tradition? Did it descend from the authoritie of our Lord, or his Gospell? Or came it from the man­dates of the Apostles, or their epistles? For, that those things must be done which are written, God himselfe doth witnesse, and propose to Iesus Naue, saying: The booke of this law shall not depart from thy mouth, but thou shalt meditate therein night and day, that thou maiest obserue to doe all things which are written in it. If therefore it be either commaunded in the Gospell, or be contained in the Epistles, or in the Acts of the Apostles, let this diuine and holy tradition be obserued.

Thus writeth S. Cyprian, shewing plainely, that all tra­ditions ought to be examined by the written word, and nothing to be admitted, which is not contained in the same, or grounded thereupon. VVhere I note by the way, for the helpe of the reader, that though Cornelius, [Page 97] then bishop of Rome (whom now the papists tearme Pope and his holinesse) together with the whole natio­nall synode of all the bishops of Italie, had made a flat decree touching rebaptization: and though also Pope Stephanus his holinesse had confirmed the same decree, and commaunded it to be obserued: and thirdly, though our papists of late daies doe obstinately affirme, that their Pope cannot erre when he defineth iudicially. Yet this notwithstanding, S. Cyprian teacheth and telleth vs plain­ly and roundly,Euseb. lib. 7. hist. cap. 2, 3, 4. that in his time the bishop of Rome had no such authoritie, as this day he proudly and antichri­stianly taketh vpon him: for he roundly withstood the decree of Pope Stephanus, who then was bishop of Rome, and both sharpely reprooued him, and contemned his falsely pretended authoritie. And for all that, S. Cyprian was euer reputed an holy bishop in his life time, and a glorious martyr being dead. But, if the bishop of Rome had beene Christs vicar, and so priuiledged, as our papists beare the world in hand he is, then doubtlesse S. Cyprian must needs haue beene an hereticke, and so reputed and esteemed in the Church of God. For, if any Christian shall this day doe or affirme as S. Cyprian did, or publickely de­nie the Popes falsely pretended prymacie in any place, countrey, territories, or dominions, where poperie bea­reth the sway, then without all peraduenture he must be burnt at a stake, with fire and faggot for his paines.

S. Athanasius hath these words: Sufficiunt sanctae ac diui­nitus inspiratae scripturae, Athanas. contrae gentes, seu idola. ad veritatis iuditionem. The holy scrip­tures inspired of God, are sufficient, for the discussion and manifestation of the truth. VVhere the reader must ob­serue with me, that Athanasius contending against the Gentiles, that their idols were not gods; and proouing that Christ was true God and true man by the Scriptures; and withall auouching, that the Scriptures were suffici­ent to decide and determine the controuersie; should haue made a very foolish argument, and haue conclu­ded nothing at all, if any necessarie truth had beene [Page 98] wanting, and not fully contained in the holy scriptures.

S. Epiphanius hath these words:Epiph. haeres. 65. Nos vniuscuius (que) quaestio­nis inuentionem, non ex proprijs ratiocinationibus dicere possumus, sed ex scripturarum consequentia. VVe cannot shew the in­uention of euery question out of our owne proper rea­sons, but by consequence of the scriptures.

S. Cyrill hath these words:Cyrillus lib. 2. de recta fide ad re­gin. tom. 2. Necessarium nobis est diuinas sequi literas, & in nullo ab earum prescripto discedere. It is neces­sarie for vs to follow the holy scriptures, and not in the least iot to depart from the prescript rule thereof.

S. Chrysostome hath these words:Chrys. in Ps. 95. tom. 1. prope finē. Si quid dicatur abs (que) scrip­tura, auditorum cogitatio claudicat, nunc annuens, nunc haesitans, & interdum sermonem vt friuolum aduersans, interdum vt proba­bilem recipiens. Verum vbi è scriptura diuinae vocis prodijt testimo­nium, & loquentis sermonem, & audientis animum confirmat. If any thing be spoken without the scripture, the cogitation of the auditours faileth, sometime yeelding, sometime staggering, and sometime reiecting the speech as friuo­lous, sometime receiuing it as probable. But, so soone as the testimonie of Gods voice is heard out of the scripture, it confirmeth both the word of the speaker, and the mind of the hearer.

The same S. Chrysostome in another place hath these words:Chrysost. hom. 41. in Matt. 22. in opere imperf. Quicquid quaeritur ad salutem, totum iam adimpletum est in scripturis. Loe, these holy fathers and auntient wri­ters (who all of them liued aboue a thousand and one hundred yeeres agoe) teach the selfesame doctrine with the former fathers. They tell vs first, that the holy scrip­ture is sufficient to decide all controuersies. Secondly, that we must affirme or hold no doctrine, but that which we find in the scriptures. Thirdly, that we must not in the least point of doctrine depart or swarue from the rule of holy scripture. Fourthly, that in the holy scripture is fully comprised whatsoeuer is necessarie for mans saluati­on. But let vs yet heare the verdict of some others.

S. Ambrose hath these words:Ambros. de fide ad Grat. lib. 1. cap. 4. tom. 2. Non negamus, imò potius hor­remus hanc vocem. Sed nolo argumento credas sancte imperator, & [Page 99] nostrae disputationi. Scripturas interrogemus; interrogemus aposto­los; interrogemus prophetas; interrogemus Christum. VVe denie not, but rather abhorre the word. Yet, holy emperour, I would neither haue you beleeue our argument nor our disputation. Let vs aske counsell vpon the scriptures; let vs aske the Apostles; let vs aske the Prophets; let vs aske Christ himselfe, and so know what is the truth.

S. Basill hath these words: Si quicquid ex fide non est, Basilius in ethi­cis, definit, vlt. prope finem. pec­catum est, sicut dicit apostolus; fides vero ex auditu, auditus autem per verbum dei; ergo quicquid extra diuinam scripturam est, cum ex fide non sit, peccatum est. If whatsoeuer is not of faith, be sinne, as the Apostle saith; and if also faith come by hea­ring, and hearing by the word of God; then doubtlesse, whatsoeuer is not in the holy scripture, the same is sinne, because it is not of faith.

The same S Basill in another place hath these words:Basilius ad Eu­stath. medieum, epist. 80. Stemus arbitratu in spiratae à deo scripturae; & apud quos inueniun­tur dogmata diuinis oraculis consona, illis omnino veritatis adiudice­tur sententia. Let vs be iudged by the scripture, which came from God by inspiration; and whose doctrine shall be found consonant to Gods Oracles, let the truth be iudged to be on their side.

S. Hierome hath these words:Hier. in cap. 23 Matth. Vide Paul. Bur­gens. in 1. cap. Osee. Hoc quia de scripturis non ha­bet authoritatem, eadem facilitate contemnitur, qua probatur. This opinion is as easily reiected as it is affirmed, because it hath no authoritie from the scriptures.

The same S. Hierome in another place hath these words:Hier. in Psal. 86. Quomodo narrabit? non verbo, sed scriptura. Videte quid dicat qui fuerunt, non qui sunt: vt exceptis Apostolis quodcun (que) aliud postea de­catur, abscindatur, non habeat postea authoritatē. Quamuis ergo san­ctus sit aliquis post Apostolos, quamuis disertus sit, non habeat authori­tatē. Quoniā dominus narrat inscriptura populorū, & principū horam qui fuerunt in ea. How shall he shew it? not by word, but by the holy scripture. Marke what he saith, who were, but not who are; to the end, that the Apostles being excepted, whatsoeuer other thing be afterward spokē, it must be re­iected, it must haue no authority at all. Wherfore, though [Page 100] a man be holy, though he be learned, yet seeing he com­meth after the Apostles, let him be of no authoritie. For our Lord speaketh to vs in the scripture of his people, and of the princes that were therein.

The same Saint Hierome in an other place hath these wordes;Hier. in lere. cap. 9. tom. 5. Erog nec parentum, nec maiorum error sequendus est, sed authoritas scripturarum, & Dei docentis imperium. Therefore we must neither follow the errour of our parents, nor of our auncestours, but the authoritie of the scriptures, and the commandement of God teaching vs.

The third reason, drawne from the authoritie of famous popish writers.

IOhn frier the late bishop of Rochester,Roffencis, art. 37. aduers. Luther. pa, 411. one highly re­nowmed amongst the papists, and with them canoni­zed for a Saint and glorious Martyr, so as his authoritie must perforce be of credit against them, hath these ex­presse words; Scriptura sacra conclaue quoddam est omnium ve­ritatum, quae Christianis scitu necessaria sunt. The holy scrip­ture is a certaine store-house of all truths, which are needfull to be knowne of Christians.

In another place the same famous papist hath these wordes;Roffens. aduers. art. Luther. verit. 4. Contendentibus ita (que) nobiscum haereticis, nos alio subsidio nostram oportet tueri causam, quam scripturae sacrae. Therefore when heretiques contend with vs, wee must defend our cause by other meanes, than by the holy scripture. These are the very expresse words of their owne famous popish bishop, of their holy Saint, of their glorious matyr; who laboured with might and maine for the Popes vsurped soueraintie, and defended the same in the best manner he was able. And yet for all that, he hath bolted out vna­wares and against his will, (such is the force of truth, which must needs in time preuaile) so much in plaine tearmes, as is sufficient to ouerthrow all poperie for euer, and to cause all people that haue any care of their saluation, to renounce the Pope and his abhominable doctrine to their liues end. For first, our popish bishop telleth vs [Page 101] plainely, and without all dissimulation, (his mouth being now opened by him that caused Balaams asse to speake)Numer. cap. 22. v. 28. That in the holy scripture, as in a plentifull storehouse, is laid vp for vs and our instruction, all knowledge necessa­rie for mans saluation. Againe, the same popish bishop, Saint, and Martyr, (of papists so esteemed and reputed) telleth vs roundly, That they must not (because forsooth they cannot) defend and maintaine their poperie by the authoritie of the scripture, but by some other way and meanes, to wit, by mans inuentions and popish vnwrit­ten vanities, which they tearme the Churches traditions. Now gentle reader, how can any papist (who is not giuen vp in reprobum sensum for his iust deserts) read such testi­monies against poperie,Rom. 1. v. 24. freely confessed and published to the world by papists, euen when they bestirre them­sulues busily to maintaine their Pope and his popish do­ctrine; and for all that continue papists still, and bee carried away headlong into perdition; beleeuing and obeying that doctrine, which cannot be defended by the written word of God, which is the store-house of all ne­cessarie knowledge;2. Thes. 2. v. 12. Rom. 1. v. 24. They doubtlesse are either very senselesse, or so blinded for their former sinnes, that they cannot behold the sunne shining at noone tide: me thinks they should be ashamed, to hold and beleeue that do­ctrine; in defence whereof, they can yeeld no better rea­sons. But let vs yet heare what other renowned popish writers tel vs; who doubtlesse will not bewray their owne cause, but against their wils. Howbeit as the wise man saith, Magnaest veritas, & praeualet; The truth is of such force as it must needes preuaile,3. Esdr. 4. v. 42. and in time haue the vpper hand.

Melchior Canus another popish bishop,Melch. Canus de llocis theolog. lib. 7. cap. 3. and a very lear­ned schoole-doctor, hath these expresse words; Cum sit perfectus scripturarum canon, sibi (que) ad omnia satis super (que) sufficiat; quid opus est, vt ei sanctorum & intelligentia iungatur, & authori­tas. Seeing the canon of the scripture is perfect, and most sufficient of it selfe to euery end, and in euery respect; [Page 102] what need haue we to ioyne therewith, either the expo­sition or the authoritie of the fathers. Thus writeth this great learned papist, not denying the sufficiencie of the holy scripture, but requiring the commentaries of the fa­thers, for the better vnderstanding of the same. VVhose opinion I doe approue and commend in that respect, as is euident to all that shall peruse my booke of Motiues.

Thomas Aquinas, Aquinas, p. 1. q. 36. art. 2. ad primum. (whom the Pope hath cannonized for a Saint, and his doctrine for authenticall) teacheth vs not to beleeue any thing concerning God, sauing that on­ly which is contained in the scripture expresly, or at least significantly. These are his owne words: Dicendum, quod de Deo dicere non debemus, quod in sacra scriptura non inuenitur, vel per verba, vel per sensum. VVe must answere, that nothing is to be verified of God, which is not contained in holy writ, either expresly, or in sense.

The same popish doctour in an other place hath these wordes:Aquinas, p. 3. q 42. art. 4. ad primum. Quicquid enim ille (Christus) de suis factis & dictis nos legere voluit, hoc scribendum illis tanquam suis manibus imperauit. For whatsoeuer Christ would haue vs to read of his do­ings and sayings, the same he commaunded his Apostles to write, as if he had done it with his owne hands. Loe, in these wordes Aquinas auoucheth very plainely, that all things necessarie for our saluation, are contained in the scriptures. For in Christs deeds, are contained his myra­cles, his life, his conuersation: in his sayings semblably, are contained his preaching, his teaching, his doctrine; and consequently, whatsoeuer is necessary for vs to know. If then this be true, as it is most true, (for the papists nei­ther will,See the Iesuit Bellarmins do­ctrine, in the end of the sercond expositi­on, and note it well. nor can denie the doctrine of Aquinas) that whatsoeuer Christ would haue vs to know, of his mira­cles, of his life, of his conuersation, of his preaching, of his teaching, of his doctrine, the same is now written in the scriptures: no man doubtlesse, but he that will cum ra­tione insanire, can denie all things necessarie for our salua­tion, to be contained in the holy scriptures.

To this doctrine deliuered by Aquinas, agreeth their [Page 103] owne renowmed professor, and most learned schoole-doctor Franciscus a victoria, Victor. de sacra. pag. 120. that Spanish frier. His expresse wordes are these; Non est mihi certum, licet omnes dicant, quod in scriptura non continetur. I doe not thinke it certaine and sure, although all writers affirme it, which is not contai­ned in the scripture.

The same popish doctor and frier,Victor. relect. 8. de augment. charit p. 308. in another place hath these words: Propter quas (opiniones) nullo modo debemus, discedere à regula & synceritate scripturarum. For which opini­ons we must by no meanes depart from the rule and syn­ceritie of the holy scriptures. Loe (gentle reader) our popish frier will beleeue no doctrine, which is not con­tained in the scripture; although all writers teach the same. Mad men therefore may they be deemed, that will beleeue whatsoeuer the Pope telleth them, though it be neuer so repugnant to the scripture.Vide tu Anselm. in 2. tim. cap. 3. & Lyran. in matt. 19. Anselmus and Lyra two other famous popish writers, doe teach vs the selfe same doctrine.

The second Proposition.

All persons of what sexe, state, calling, or condition so­euer they be, may lawfully, and ought seriously to read the holy scriptures; as out of which, euen the simplest of all may gather so much as is necessarie for their saluation. This I say, against that popish, ridiculous, vnchristian, and verie pestilent abuse, where the Pope deliuereth to the people, as it were by was of apostolicall traditon; the scriptures, sacraments, and church-seruice, in a strange tongue to them vnknowne. VVhich to be flatly against the practise of the primitiue Church, I haue proued copi­ously in my booke of Suruey. Here therefore I will onely shew, that it is both lawfull and necessarie for all sorts of people that desire to attaine eternall life, to read diligent­ly the holy scriptures.

S. Chrysostome discourseth at large of this subiect in ma­ny places of his workes;Chrysost. in pro­aemio epist. ad. Rom. but I will content my selfe with some few for the present. In his commentaries vpon Saint Paul he hath these words: Et vos ita (que), si lectioni cum animi [Page 104] alacritate volueritis attendere, nullo alio preterea opus habebitis. Ve­rus enim est sermo Christi, cum dicit; quaerite & inuenietis, pulsate & aperietur. Verum quia plures exijs qui huc conuenere, & libero­rum educationem, & vxoris curam, gubernandae (que) domus insesere­ceperunt, at (que) ideo non sustinent totos se labori isti addicere, saltem ad percipienda quae alij collegerunt, excitamini: tantum ijs quae dicuntur audiendis impendite diligentiae, quantum colligendis pecunijs. Tam etsi enim turpe sit non nisi tantum a vobis exigere, tamen contenti eri­mus, si vel tantum prestetis. Nam hinc iunumera mala nata sunt, quod scripturae ignorantur. Hinc erupit multa illa haereseon pernicies; hinc vita dissoluta, hinc inutiles labores: quemadmodum enim qui luce ista priuatisunt, recta vti (que) non pergunt: ita qui ad radios diui­narum. Scripturarum non respiciunt, multa coguntur continuò de­linquere, vtpote in longe peioribus tenebris ambulantes; quod ne nobis vsu veniat, occulos ad splendorem Apostolicorum verborum ape­riamus. If therefore you will read the scriptures with ala­critie of mind, you shall need no other helpe at all. For Christs word is true, when he saith: Seeke, and ye shall find; knocke, and it shall be opened vnto you. But be­cause many of you are charged with wiues, children, and domesticall regiment, and so can not wholy addict your selues to this studie: yet at the least bee readie to heare what others haue gathered, and bestow so much diligence in hearing what is said, as you doe in scraping worldlie goods together. For albeit it bee a shame to require no more of you, yet will I be content, if ye doe so much. For, the cause of infinit euils, is your ignorance in the scrip­tures: From hence springeth the manifold mischiefe of heresies; from hence, dissolute life; from hence, vaine and vnprofitable labours. For, euen as they that are be­reaued of this light, cannot goe the right way: so they that doe not behold the beames of the holy scriptures, are enforced inconintently to offend in many things, as walking in farre greater darknesse.

This is the golden censure of Saint Chrysostome, rightly surnamed the golden mouthed doctour. Out of whose doctrine, I gather these worthy obseruations: First, that [Page 105] whosoeuer studieth the scriptures seriously, and with alacritie, shall find therein, and vnderstand so much, as is necessarie for his saluation. And consequently, that our disholy father the Pope, debarreth vs of the ordinarie meanes of our saluation; when he vpon paine of excom­munication, inhibiteth vs to read the scriptures in our vulgar tongue, vnlesse we haue his licence and dispensa­tion so to doe. And he hath I confesse, some reason thus to deale: because forsooth poperie would haue a short reigne, if euery papist might freely read the holy scrip­ture, and other godly bookes written for their instructi­on. But alasse, they are so bewitched with his blessings, that they thinke they shalbe damned, if they doe but read this my discourse, or any other opposite to poperie, not hauing his licence so to doe. But all his priests are li­cenced; and so they can pretend no excuse, if they doe not frame some answere hereunto.

Secondly, that it is a very shame, for men charged with wiues, children, and families; that they doe but on­lie heare sermons, and doe not withall studie the holy scriptures; and consequently, that it is much more shame for others that be more free, not to read them diligently; and greatest shame of all for a bishop, to approue or com­mend them that will not so doe,

Thirdly, that heresies, dissolute life, and all other euils, doe proceed of ignorance, and of not reading the holy scriptures.

The same Saint Chysostome in an other place hath these wordes.Chrysost. in 9. ca. genes. hom. 29. to. 1. Propterea obsecro, vt subinde huc veniatis, & diuinae scripturae lectionem diligenter auscultetis; nec solum cum huc venitis, sed & domi diuina b [...]blia in manus sumite, & vtilitatem in illis positam magno studio suscipitc. Sequitur Paulo inferius. Tantum igi­tur lucrum oro, ne per negligentiam amittemus, sed & domi vace­mus diuinarum scriptur arum lectioni, & hic presentes non in nugis & inutilibus colloquijs tempus decoquamus. I beseech you therefore, that you will come hither now and then, and [Page 106] attend diligently the reading of the holy scriptures; nei­ther that onely when ye come hither, but at home also take the holy bibles into your hands, and with great stu­die embrace the profit contained in them. I pray you therefore, let vs not negligently loose so great gaine, but when we are at home, let vs then apply our selues to read the holy scriptures: and being here, let vs not spend our time idlely and vainely.

By these testimonies, (to omit many others) we may perceiue most euidently, how grieuously Saint Chrysostome lamenteth, that the people in his time were so negligent in reading the holy scripture. VVhat therefore would that holy father say, if he liued in these our daies, in which the Pope burneth such scriptures, as the people vnder­stand in their vulgar tongue: In which he commaundeth all church-seruice to be in straunge and vnknowne lan­guage: In which he excommunicateth all say-persons be they neuer so well learned,6. decret. lib. 5. cap. quicunque. that reason of matter of faith, or dispute of his power? VVhat would he say, if he heard priests pronounce absolution in their popish sacrament of penance, which neither the penitents, nor the priests themselues doe often vnderstand? Nay, what would he say, if he were this day in popish Churches, where they doe not onely read their Churchseruice in Latine, but al­so Latine homilies or sermons vnto the vulgar sort; which yet they tearme an exposition of the scripture: which maner of proceeding is practised euery festiuall day of nine lessons, in the time of their mattens? In fine, what would he say, if he knew the rude vulgar sort, who are commaunded to heare the Gospell read in Latine, and withall should see them listening with their eares, least any word should not be heard, though impossible of them to be vnderstood? would he not, and might he not iustly say with the holy Apostle,1. Cor. 14. v. 24. that they were mad? Yes doublesse, it cannot be denied.

Origen, who liued aboue a thousand and three hundred [Page 107] yeares agoe, doth not onely exhort the people seriously to read the scriptures, but withall sheweth plainely, that in his time they were read in the vulgar tongue. These are his words:Origen hom. 4. pe super leuit. pro finem. Certè, si non omnia possumus, saltem ea quae nunc do­centur in ecclesia, vel quae recitantur, memoriae commendemus. Doubtlesse, if we cannot beare away all things contained in the scriptures, yet at the least let vs remember those things which are taught and read in the Church. Loe, in these golden words he speaketh not onely of sermons, but also of the Gospels, Epistles, Prayers, Lessons, and hi­stories of the Bible. For sermons are contained in the word (docentur, which are preached;) and the rest in the word (re­citantur, which are read or rehearsed:) but certes, if such things had beene read in a strange and vnknown tongue, the vulgar sort could not haue committed them to me­morie. And consequently, to no end or purpose should Origen haue made this exhortation. And the obiection which is common in the mouthes of our papists, That Saint Peter affirmeth the scriptures to be obscure and hard to bee vnderstood (notwithstanding the great brags and insolent vaunts of our Rhemists) is too too foolish,Rhemist. in 2. Pet. cap. 3. and of no force at all. For first, Saint Peter saith not, that the whole scripture is hard to be vnderstood, but some things in S. Paules Epistles. Secondly, he speaketh not solely and barely of the vnlearned, but of the vnlearned which are vnstable. Thirdly, he speaketh not generally of all readers of the scripture, but of those wicked ones, which depraue not onely S. Paules Epistles,Vide D. Chrysost. in proemio epist. ad Rom. in in [...]io. but also all o­ther scriptures, to their owne perdition. Howbeit, to de­barre all the godly, who with all humilitie and reuerence desire to read the scriptures; and to abandon one onely particular euill, by taking away the good wholly and ge­nerally; may well be resembled to those vnskilfull physi­tions, who cannot deliuer their patients from any parti­cular disease, except they take away their liues. But wise Salomon was of another mind,Prou. 8. v. 8, 9. when he affirmed all the [Page 108] words of wisedome to be open and easie to euery one of vnderstanding, that is, which haue a desire to the truth, and are not blinded of the prince of this world. For, as by the foole, he meaneth euery wicked man: so by a man of vnderstanding he meaneth euery one that is godly. Hereupon it is said,Psal. 25. v. 9. that God reuealeth his secret coun­sels to all that feare him:Iohn. 7. v. 17. That whosoeuer will do the will of God,Iohn. 8. v. 31: 32 the same shal know his doctrine: That they which abide in Gods word, shall know the truth:Matth. 11. v. 25. That God re­uealeth his will vnto the simple and vnlearned ones, and hideth his secrets from the wise and prudent:Ps. 119. v. 105. That the whole bodie of the scripture, from the head to the foot thereof, is tearmed a lanterne to ourfeet, and a light vn­to our pathes: That Gods word is like a candle, shining in a darke place, vntill the day dawne, and the day-star arise in our hearts:2. Pet. 1. v. 19. That the spirituall man doth vnderstand all things which are necessarie for his saluation:1. Cor. 2. v. 15. for so Lyra and Dionysius Carthusianus, two great learned papists, doe expound the place. And consequently, if Gods word be hidden to any, it is hidden to those that perish, to those whose vnderstandings the God of this world hath blin­ded,2. Cor. 4. v. 3, 4. that the light of the Gospell of the glorie of Christ, should not shine vnto them.

S. Chrysostome hath these golden words:Chrys. in 2. Thes. cap. 2. hom. 3. Quid opus est concionatore? Per nostram negligentiam necessitas ista facta est. Quamobrem nam (que) concione opus est? Omnia clara sunt & plana ex diuiais scripturis; quaecun (que)s necessaria sunt, manifesta sunt. VVhat need is there of a preacher? Our negligence hath caused this necessitie. For to what end is a sermon needfull? All things are cleere and euident in the holy scriptures, what things soeuer are necessarie, the same are manifest.

The same S. Chrysostome in his Commentaries vpon the Epistle of the Colossians,Chrys. in Coloss. hom. 9. col. 1290. hath these words: Audite quot­quot estis mundani, & vxoribus prae estis ac liberis, quomodo & vo­bis potissimum precipiat scripturas legere; id (que) non simpliciter, ne (que) abiter, sed magna diligentia, Sequitur Paulo inferius. Audite obse­cro [Page 109] seculares omnes. Comparate vobis biblia, animae pharmaca. Si nihil aliud vultis, vel nouum testamentum acquirite, Apostolum, Acta, Euangelia, continuos ac sedulos doctores. Si acciderit mae­stitia, huc veluti apothecam pharmacorum introspice. Hinc tibi sume solamen mali, siue damnū euenerit, siue mors, siue amissio domestico­rum. Imònon introspice solum, sed omnia iterum at (que) iterum versa, mente (que) illa contine. Hoc demum malorum omnium causa est, quod scripturae ignorantur. Iterum; doce puerum tuum Psalmos illos canere Philosophiae plenos. Hearken all ye that are encombred with worldly affaires, and haue charge of wiues and children, how you specially are commanded to read the scriptures, and that not simply nor slenderly, but with great dili­gence. Heare I pray you, all secular persons. Prouide and furnish your selues with bibles, the soueraigne medicines of your soules. If you will haue no other thing, at the least prouide the new Testament, the Apostle, the Acts, the Gospell, the continuall and diligent doctors. If any griefe come, turne thine eye vnto the scripture, as to the Apothecaries shop full of medicines. From hence receiue sollace of euill, whether domage, or death, or losse of worldly goods chance vnto thee. Yea, looke not onely to the scripture, but volue and reuolue all things contai­ned therein, and keepe the same in mind. For this is the cause of all manner of euils, that men are ignorant in the holy scriptures. Teach your children to sing Psalmes, which are full of Philosophie.

Thus writeth this holy father, teaching vs at large, how necessarie and needfull a thing it is for euery one to studie and read diligently the holy scriptures. For first, he telleth vs plainely, that all necessarie points of doctrine are so plaine and manifest, as one may vnderstand the same without the preacher. Secondly, that they who are charged with wiues, children, and worldly affaires, are spe­cially and more than others, commaunded to read the scriptures: The reason hereof he yeeldeth in another place; because the more they are encombered with the [Page 110] cares of the world, the more need they haue to enioy the helpes of the holy scripture. These are his words: Quid ais homo? Chrysost. conc. 3. de lazaro, tom. 2. col. 1340. Non est tui negotij scripturas euoluere, quoniam in numeris curis distraberis? Imò tuum magis est, quam illorum. Ne (que) enim illi perinde scripturarum egent presidio, at (que) vos in medijs negotiorum vndis iactati. VVhat sayest thou ô man? Is it not thy part and dutie to read the holy scriptures, because thou art encombred with many worldly cares? yea, it is so much more thy charge than it is theirs: For they haue not so great need of the helpe of the scriptures as you haue, who are tossed in the middest of the waues of worldly troubles. Thirdly, that all secular persons of both sexes must furnish themselues with the holy Bible. Fourthly, that they must not onely read the scriptures barely and slenderly, but that they must doe the same with great di­ligence. Fiftly, that the scriptures doe minister comforts for all sorrowes, and soueraigne medicines for all sores. Sixtly, that the ignorance of the scriptures is the cause of all euils. Seuenthly, that parents must teach their chil­dren to sing Psalmes, yea, euen those Psalmes which are replenished with Philosophie.

S. Austen teacheth in the same manner,August. de doct. Christ. li, 2. cap. 9. that all things necessarie for mans saluation, are plaine and easie to be vnderstood. These are his expresse words: In his enim qu (que) apertè in scriptura posita sunt▪ inueniuntur illa omnia, quae conti­nent fidem mores (que) viuendi. For in those things which are plainely set downe in the holy scripture, are found all things concerning faith and manners.

The same S. Austen in another place hath these words:August. de doct. Christ. li. 2. cap. 6. Magnifice igitur & salubriter spiritus sanctus ita scripturas sanctas modificauit, vt locis apertioribus fami occurreret, obscurioribus au­tem fastidia detergeret. God hath so tempered the holy scrip­tures, that by manifold places he might prouide against famine, and by those which are more obscure, he might cleanse the loathsomenesse of our stomacke. And his rea­son hereof followeth in these next words: Nihil enim fere [Page 111] de illis obscurit atibus eruitnr, quod non planissime dictum alibi re­periatur. For almost nothing is contained in obscure places, which is not most plainely vttered in some other place.

The same father in an other place hath these wordes; Nec solum vobis sufficiat, Aug. de tempor [...] ser. 55. quod in ecclesia diuinas lectiones auditis, sed etiam in domibus vestris aut ipsi legite, aut alios legentes requiri­te, & libenter audite. Let it not be enough for you, onely to heare Gods word in the Church; but also read it your selues in your houses, or else procure others to read it, and heare you them willing.

Out of these wordes of this holy writer, and antient father, we may learne many godly lessons. First, that all things needfull for our saluation, are plainely set downe in the scriptures. Secondly, that things which are obscure­ly touched in some places, are plainelie handled in other places. Thirdly, that the scriptures are obscure in some places, to exercise our wits, and to cleanse the loathsome­nesse of our stomackes. Fourthly, that we must read the scriptures at home in our houses, & not heare them read in the Churches. Fiftly, that if we cannot read them our selues, then must we procure others to read them to vs, and marke diligently what they read, and heare them with desire and alacritie of mind.

Saint Hierome is consonant to Saint Austen and Saint Chysostome, Hieron. in Ps. 133. affirming, that in his time (which was about 1200 yeeres agoe) both monkes, men, and women, did contend who could learne moe scriptures without book. These are his expresse wordes; Solent & viri, solent & mo­nachi; solent & mulierculae hoc inter se habere certamen, vt plures ediscant scripturas; & in eose putant esse meliores si plures edidice­rint. Men, women, and monkes, vse to contend one with another, who can learne moe scriptures: and here­in they thinke themselues better, if they can learne more.

The same Saint Hierome in an other place, speaking of the education of a yoong maid of seuen yeeres old, hath [Page 112] these wordes;Hieron. ad Gau­dentium, tom. 1. fol. 44. B. Matris nutum pro verbis ac monitis, & pro imperio habeat. Amet vt parentem, subijciatur vt dominae, timeat vt magi­stram. Cum autem virgunculam rudem & edentulam septimus aeta­tis annus exceperit, & caeperit erubescere, scire quid taceat, dubitare quid dicat; discat memoriter psalterium, & vs (que) ad annos puberta­tis libros Salomonis, euangelia, Apostolos, & prophetas, sui cordis thesaurum faciat. Let her mothers beck to her, be in steed of wordes, admonitions, and commaunds. Let her loue her as her parent, obey her as her ladie, and feare her as her mistris. And when the rude and toothlesse girle shall bee seuen yeere old, and shall begin to be bashfull, to know when to be silent, and when to speake; then let her learne the Psames by heart, and without booke: and till she be twelue yeeres of age, or marriageable, let her make the bookes of Salomon, the Gospels, Apostles, and Prophets, the treasure of her heart. Thus writeth Saint Hierome: out of whose golden words I note these golden obseruations. First, that both men and women in his dayes, did studie and read the scriptures, as diligently and painfully as the monkes. Secondly, that in his time they thought them­selues the happiest people, who could con by heart the most texts of holy scripture: Wheras amongst the papists they are deemed most holy, that can by heart no scrip­ture at all, but absteine from the reading thereof, as from the poyson of their soules. Thirdly, that yong women be­ing but seuen yeeres of age, must be acquainted with the holy scriptures, & learne by heart the booke of Psalmes. Fourthly, that from seuen yeeres vpward vntill puberty, that is to say, vntill the twelft yere of their age, they must read seriously the bookes of Salomon, the Gospels, Apo­stles, and Prophets, and set their whole delite therein. And the same holy father in his Epistle to the godly ma­trone Celantia, Hieron. ad Ce­lant. tom. 1. fol. 50. A. doth perswade her for the best course of her life, to be continually conuersant in the holy scriptures. These are his wordes; Sint ergo diuinae scipturae semper in ma­nibus tuis, & iugiter mente voluantur. Let therefore the holy [Page 113] scriptures be alwayes in thy hands, and let them be vnces­santly tossed or rolled in thy mind.

Saint Theodoretus telleth vs with good liking thereof,Theodor. lib. 5. de Graeca, affect. curat. pag. 521. that in his time the scriptures were translated into all ma­ner of languages, & that they were not onely vnderstood of doctors, & masters of the Church, but euen of the lay-people, and common artificers. His expresse wordes I will alledge, which are these; Hebraici vero libri, non modo in Graecum idioma conuersi sunt, sed in Romanam quoque linguam, Aegyptiam, Persicam, Indicam, Armenica (que), & Scythicam, at (que) adeo Sauromaticam, semel (que) vt dicam, in linguas omnes, quibus ad hanc diem nationes vtuntur. Sequitur paulò inferius, fossores (que) adeo ac bubulcos inuenias; plant arum (que) consitores de diuina trinitate, re­rum (que) omnium creatione discertantes. The Hebrew bookes are turned not onely into the Greeke tongue, but also into the Roman language also, into the Aegyptian, Persian, Indians, Armenian, and Scythian, as also into the Sauro­matick tongue, & to speake all in a word, into all tongues, which this day are in vse amongst nations. And after hee hath told vs, that the Church-doctrine, is knowne to all maner artizans of both sexes; he addeth, that we may find ditchers, deluers, neatheards, and gardiners, dispu­ting euen of the blessed trinitie, and of the creation of all things. VVhereupon it is euident, that in the auncient Church, and in the time of old religion, (as the sillie foo­lish papists call their Romish inuentions, which is in deed a newly inuented religion, as I haue proued in my Suruey of poperie) euery nation had the holy scriptures in their vulgar language: and that in those dayes, all the Christi­ans did read the holy scriptures so seriously, that both men and women, of all trades and conditions, were able to dispute of the holy trinitie, and of the creation of the world. VVhich two points doubtlesse, are the most diffi­cult, obscure, hard, and intricate articles, in the whole course of theologie.

The Iesuit Bellarmine, (a wonderfull thing to be heard, [Page 114] and a most incredible, sauing (that the truth must needes in time haue the vpper hand) confesseth so much vna­wares, as is able sufficiently to prooue and conclude my intended scope and proposition.Bellar. tom 1. ed. 191. lib. 4. de verbo Deiscrip. to. cap. 11. a. These are his expresse wordes; His notatis, dico illa omnia scripta esse ab apostolis, quae sunt omnibus necessariae, & quaeipsipalam omnibus vulgo praedica­uerant; alia autem non omnia scripta esse. These obseruations being marked, I answere, that all those things were writ­ten by the Apostles, which are necessarie for all men, and which the Apostles preached openly to all the vulgar people; but that all other things were not written. Thus writeth our skilfull Iesuit, who in the name of all pa­pists, (being as it were their mouth) saith all that can be said, in defence of late Romish religion. Out of whose words I note first, that all thing necessarie for all men and all women, old men, yoong men, maids, and babes, rich and poore, noble and ignoble, are set downe and contei­ned in the holy scriptures. Secondly, that all things con­tained in the written word, are necessarie for all people. Thirdly, that those things which are not contained in the written word, were neuer preached openly to all people, but secretly to some few persons in secret corners; perad­uenture to our Iesuits and Iesuited popelings, sauing that their sect was not then hatched, as which is not yet eighty yeeres old. Fourthly, that those things which are not contained in the scriptures and written word, are not ne­cessarie for all people, but onely for Iesuits and papists, to bring them to perdition. Fiftly, that seeing on the one side, all things needfull for all men and all women, for yong and old, rich and poore, noble and ignoble, are contained in the scriptures; and seeing withall on the other side, that all things in the written word are neces­sarie for all people, (marke well what I say, gentle rea­der, for I build my worke vpon that foundation which the Iesuit hath laid) it followeth by necessarie conse­quution, that all people ought seriously to read the ho­ly [Page 115] scripture: as also that they may safely contemne all vnwritten traditions, as nothing needfull or pertaining to them. But let vs heare our Cardinall Iesuit once again speake for himselfe and for the honour of this holy father the Pope.Bellar. de verbo dei, lib. 3. cap. 2. tom. 1. col. 129. These are his expresse words: At in nouo testa­mento, quia Christus impleuit figuras & prophetias; etsi multi non intelligant sententias scripturarum, intelligunt tamen ipsa mysteria redemptionis, etiam rustici & mulieres. But in the new testa­ment, because Christ hath fulfilled the figures and the prophesies; although many doe not vnderstand the sen­tences of the scriptures, yet doe they vnderstand the my­steries of our redemption, euen the common countrey fellowes and the very women.

Thus writeth our Iesuit, affirming, that euen women and the very rustickes of the countrey, doe vnderstand the scriptures, so farre forth as pertaineth to the mysteries of their redemption: and I pray you, why then doth the Pope debarre them from the reading thereof? VVhat more knowledge is needfull ouer and besides the myste­ries of mans redemption? It is all the knowledge which Saint Paule desired to haue:1. Cor. 2. v. 2. who (as he saith of himselfe) esteemed not to know any thing among them, saue Iesus Christ, & him crucified. I therfore conclude by our Iesuits owne free graunt, that it behooueth all men and women, children and maids, diligently to read the holy scriptures, seeing they may vnderstand therein all the mysteries of their redemption, viz. all knowledge necessarie for their saluation. VVhich knowledge is so necessarie, as nothing can be more.Deut. 11. v. 18, 19, 20. Ye (saith God by the mouth of his seruant Moses) shall lay vp these my words in your heart and in your soule, and bind them for a signe vpon your hand, that they may be as a frontlet betweene your eyes.Deut. 6. v. 8, 9. And ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them whē thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest downe, and when thou risest vp. And thou shalt write them vpon the posts of thine house,Deut. 4. v. 9. [Page 116] and vpon thy gates. But our papists obiect against vs, that when the fathers exhort all men and women to read the scriptures,Rheme▪ testa­ment in prefatio, sect. 15. they speake as pulpit-men agreeably to their audience, and the peoples default; but not as tea­chers in the schoole, making exact and generall rules to be obserued in all places and times. To which I answere first, that the truth must be spoken as well in the pulpit as in the schoole. Secondly, that the doctrine in pulpit is and ought to be as exact, absolute, and necessarie, as the doctrine in schoole: The sole and onely difference is or ought to be this, viz. that the pulpit hath euer the pricke of exhortation annexed, which the schoole wanteth. For the preacher may not speake at randon in the pulpit, but euen there must he haue the girdle of truth about his loynes. Thirdly, that holy Dauid regarded no such popish distinction,Psal. 119. v. 9. when asking, whereby a yong man shal clense his waies? he answereth thus: By studie, meditation, and keeping of the law of God. Neither the godly men in Berhaea,Act. 17. v. 11. when they daily searched the scriptures, euen to examine the doctrine of the Apostles by them. Our papists obiect likewise,1. Tim. 2. v. 12. that S. Paule will haue women to liue in silence, and not to chat and prattle of the scriptures. I answere, that though S. Paule will not permit women to teach publickely before men; yet doth he neither forbid them to read the scriptures, nor yet to teach priuately, when due circumstances doe occurre. For the same Apo­stleTit. 2. v. 3. elswhere commaundeth mothers to teach godly things to their children. So Salomon, the wisest child that euer was among the sonnes of Adam, one Christ euer ex­cepted, confesseth plainely and humbly, what doctrine his mother Bethsheba taught him.Prou. 31. v. 1. So Priscilla, wife to Aquila the Iew born in Pontus, expounded the scriptures to the Iew Apollo, Act. 18. v. 26. 2. Tim. 1. v. 5. & 2 Tim. 3. v. 15. borne at Alexandria, a very eloquent man. So Ti­mothie was throughly instructed in the scriptures by his mother Eunice, and by his grandmother Lois. By which no­table example it is euident and cleare to euery one, that [Page 117] neither mothers must forbeare to teach, nor yet young babes forbeare to learne the holy scriptures.

The third Proposition.

Traditions must be examined by the holy scriptures, which is the true touchstone of veritie; and then onely ad­mitted, when they are found to be consonant to the same. For proofe of this proposition, the very name or word (Canonicall) is of it selfe sufficient. For (Canon) is a Greek word, which signifieth a rule, and there upon those bookes are called the Canonicall scriptures, which are the rule of our faith. And consequently, whatsoeuer is not consonant to the scriptures, the same ought to be reiected, as perni­tious and swaruing from the rule of our faith. For this cause doth the Prophet Esay send vs to the law,Esae. 8. v. 20. and to the testimonie, there to trie the truth. For this cause doth the Prophet Malachie exhort the people euer to be mindfullMal. 4. 4. of the law of Moses. For this cause doth the Prophet Da­uid tell vs, That Gods word is a lanterne to our feet.Psal. 119. v. 105 For this cause saith S. Peter, That Gods word is a light shining in darke places,2. Pet. 1. v. 19. vntill the day-starre arise in our hearts. For this cause did Christ himselfe exhort the Iewes toIohn 5. v. 39. reade seriously the holy scriptures. For this cause said Christ, That the Pharisies erred,Matt. 22. v. 29. because they knew not the scriptures.Act. 17 v. 11. For this cause did the men at Berhaea trie the truth of S. Paules doctrine by the scriptures. For this cause doth S. Iohn exhort vs not to beleeue euery spirit,1 Iohn 4. v. 1. but to trie the spirits, if they be of God. For this cause doth S. Paule pronounce him accursed that preacheth any doctrine not contained in the scriptures.Gal. 1, 2. For both S. Austen and S. Basill doe expound that place of the written word.Aug cont. literas Pet l. li. 3. cap. 6. tom. 7. And the truth thereof is alreadie prooued, because the Apostles taught no needfull doctrine, which they did not after commit to writing.

S. Cyprian would not yeeld to Stephanus then bishop of Rome, in the controuersie concerning rebaptization; but [Page 118] sharpely reprooued him for leaning to tradition,Cyprian epist. ad Pompeium. 74. and de­maunded of him, by what scripture he could prooue his tradition. For, in his daies it was not ynough to alleadge tradition for the proofe of any doctrine. And much lesse was it a rule in Saint Cyprians time to follow the bishop of Romes definitiue sentence, in matters of faith and doctrin. Though our sottish and blind papists in these latter dayes doe admit and reuerence his sentence, euen as the holy Gospell. See S. Cyprians words in the first proposition.

VVhen the Arrians would not admit the word ( [...]) because it was not found in the scriptures, the fathers of the counsell did not then alleadge traditions for proofe thereof; neither did they say, that many things must be beleeued which are not written: but they answered sim­ply, That though that word were not expressely written, yet was it virtually and effectually contained in the scrip­tures. This assertion is euident by the testimonie of Saint Athanasius, Athanas. de de­cret. nic. synod. tom. 2. prope finē. whose words are these: Sed tamen cognoscat quisquis est studiosioris animi, has voces tametsi in scripturis non reperiantur, habere tamen eas eam sententiam quam scripturae volunt. Al­though the expresse words be not found in the scripture, yet haue they that meaning and sence which the scrip­ture approoueth and intendeth, as euery one that studi­eth the scripture seriously, may easily vnderstand.

Origen in Matt. hom. 25. & hom. 1. in 1. cap. Ier. Origen giueth counsell to trie all doctrines by the scrip­tures, euen as pure gold is tried by the touchstone. His words are set downe at large in my booke of Motiues, and they are well worth the reading.

Tertullian hath these words:Tertull. aduers. praexe. in prin­cipe. Id esse verum, quodcun (que) pri­mum; id esse adulterum, quodcun (que) posterius. VVe must know, that that it is the truth, whatsoeuer was first; and that that is counterfeit, whatsoeuer commeth after the first.

S. Austen Aug. de vint. eccles. cap. 10. non longe ab initio, 10. 7. hath many golden sentences and worthie testimonies to this end and purpose. One only I will here recount, where he hath these wordes: Nemo mihi dicat, ô quid dixit Donatus, aut quid dixit Parmenianus, aut Pontius, aut [Page 119] quilibet illorum: quia nec Catholicis episcopis consentiendum est, sicubi forte falluntur, vt contra canonicas dei scripturas aliquid sen­tiant. Let no man say to me, oh what said Donatus, or what said Parmenianus, or Pontius, or any of them; because wee must not consent euen to Catholicke bishops, if it so fall out, that they erre in any point, and speake against the ca­nonicall scriptures.

Saint Chrysostome, Chryso. in 2. Cor. 7. hom. 13. in fine. surnamed the golden mouthed do­ctor, agreeth vniformely vnto the other fathers in many places of his workes. One onely period shall for the pre­sent suffice, where he hath these golden wordes; Quomodo autem non absurdum est propter pecunias alijs non credere, sed ipsas numerare & supputare, prorebus autem amphoribus, aliorum sen­tentiam sequi simpliciter; presertim, cum habeamus omnium exactis­simam trutinam, & gnomonem, acregulam, diuinarum inquam legum assertionem. Ideo obsecro & (oro omnes vos, vt relinquatis quidnam hinc vel illi videatur, de (que) his àscripturishaec etiam iniqui­rite, et veras diuitias difcentes eas sectemur, vt & aeterna bona asse­quamur. How can it but be absurd, that in money matters we will not credite others, but will tell the money our selues; and for all that in affaires of greater importance, (which concerne the health aud saluation of our soules) we can be content simply to follow the iudgement and opinion of others; especially, when wee haue the most exact ballance, squire and rule of all things, I meane the plaine testimonie of Gods lawes. I therefore pray and beseech you all, that you will reiect what this man or that man thinketh, and search the truth out of the scriptures; that learning true riches, we may follow them, and so at­taine eternall life. Behold here (gentle reader) a most ex­cellent and Christian exhortation, a very godly and gol­den aduiso, giuen vs by this holy father. If wee will not (saith he) trust others to tell our money, but for surenesse will tell it our selues; much lesse should wee trust others, and much lesse depend vpon their iudgements and say­ings, in matters touching our saluation: but our selues [Page 120] must learne and know such things, by diligent reading of the holy scriptures. Neither must we beleeue what this or that man saith, but what we find to be true, by painefull studie of the holy scriptures. Now let vs heare attentiue­ly, what the best approoued papists teach vs, concerning this important and most weightie controuersie.

Franciscus à victoria, Victor. de augm. charitat. relect. 8. pag. 308, a learned schoole-man and Spanish popish frier, yeelds his opinion in these expresse wordes: Propter quas (opiniones) nullo modo debeà us discedere, à regula & synceritate scripturarum. For which opinions we may in no wise depart from the rule and synceritie of the scrip­tures.

Againe,Victor. de sacra. pag. 120. in another place he hath these words: Non est mihi certum, licet in hoc conueniant omnes, quia in scriptura non ha­betur. I doe not thinke it sure and certaine, although all writers agree thereunto, because it is not to be found in the holy scriptures.

Melchior Canus, another learned schoole-doctor and re­nowned popish bishop, confirmeth the same doctrine in these words:Canus de lecis, lib. 3. cap. vlt. Fatemur non audiendos esse sacerdotes, nisi docuerint iuxta legem domiui. VVe graunt, that we must not giue eare or hearken to the priests, except they shall teach vs according to Gods law.

Loe, the papists affirme plainely, that no doctrine is sound, or to be receiued, but that onely which is tried to be true by Gods word. Neither may we beleeue the do­ctrin of any popish priest, vnlesse it be agreeable to Gods law. Now doubtlesse, if the Pope will be tried and iudged by this doctrine, which his best doctors haue published to the world (the spirit of God hauing enforced them there­unto) we shall soone agree in all controuersies of religi­on. And certes, this their doctrine is so certaine and eui­dent, that the Iesuit Bellarmine singeth the same song with them; which my selfe could not easily haue beleeued, if I had not read his owne testimonie in his owne booke.Bellar. de conc. lib. 2. cap. 2. in fine. These are his expresse words: Sine dubio singuli episcopi errare [Page 121] possunt, & aliquando errant, & inter se quando (que) dissentiunt, vt nesciamus quisnam eorum sequendus sit. It is without all doubt, that all bishops seuerally may erre, and sometime doe erre, and doe so disagree among themselues, that we can­not in the world tell which of them we may safely follow. Thus you see euen by the Iesuits verdict, that in the po­pish Church, all their bishops doe so erre, and sometimes so dissent one from another, that no papist can tell indeed which of them it is best to follow. To which doctrine I will very willingly subscribe, aduising this Iesuit and all other Iesuited papists to remember well this doctrine, and not to hang their soules henceforth vpon their iarring and doting popish fathers; whom (as their deere Iesuit and re­nowmed Cardinall Bellarmine telleth them) they may not safely follow. And least the Iesuit or some for him shall an­swere me or say in his defence, That albeit all popish bi­shops may erre seuerally, and dissent among themselues, as is alreadie said; yet can they not erre, when they are called together in a synode or counsell, and the same con­firmed by the Pope. This is all doubtlesse that posibly can be said in defence of popish doctrine: And conse­quently, if I shall once prooue this to be a rotten founda­tion, then must all popish buildings raised vpon the same, fall downe, and be euen with the ground. Marke (gentle Reader) my syncere replie, which I shall pithyly and plainely set downe in this behalfe. VVherein for perspi­cuitie sake, I will proceed by way of conclusions.

The first Conclusion.

The Pope was neuer present at the counsels in the East Churches, by himselfe and in his owne person. This con­clusion is freely confessed by the Iesuit Bellarmine, Bellar. de conc. lib. 1. cap. 19. who al­leadgeth two reasons for the Popes absence: The one forsooth, because it was not conuenient, that the head should follow the members: The other, because the em­perour would euer sit in the highest place. Out of whose [Page 122] words, I must needs note two important points by the way: The one, that in the auntient Church the highest place in the counsels, was euer reserued to the emperour: The other, that the East Churches did neuer acknow­ledge the Popes primacie, which he this day arrogantly challengeth ouer all kingdomes and regalities. To which twaine, this pleasant adiunct perforce must be annexed, viz. that our humble father the Pope (who calleth him­selfe hypocritically seruus seruorum dei) would neuer come to the counsels, because forsooth he could not endure to see the emperour sitting in the highest place.

The second Conclusion.

The Pope staying at home himselfe, sendeth his le­gates to the counsels, to supplie his place, to whom for all that he cannot commit his authoritie. This conclusion must needs seeme strange to a great many; but I will confirme it with the testimonie of such a worthie and re­nowmed papist, that all whosoeuer shall once heare or read it, cannot but giue credit to the same.

Melchior Canus is the man, from whose pen I recei­ued it; the case is euident,Canus lib. 5. de authoritat. cone. cap. 5. pag. 102. these are his words: Decreta quae à legato contra sedis Apostolicae traditionem approbantur, non ha­bent Romanae ecclesiae authoritatem; nec aliter se habent, quam si à concilio siue legatis prodnissent. Sequitur; solidam auctoritatem quam in confirmandis & fratribus & dogmatibus Petrus habet, in legatos transferre non potest. The decrees which the legate shall approoue against the tradition of the Church of Rome, haue no authoritie from the Church of Rome; neither are they of any more force, than if they had pro­ceeded from the counsell without the consent of the le­gates. The sound authoritie which Peter hath in confir­ming his brethren and decrees, he cannot transferre vnto his legates. These are the expresse words of Canus, that worthie bishop, and strong pillar of popish doctrine. Out of whose words I note first, that decrees of counsels be of [Page 123] no force, when they haue not the consent of the Popes legates. Secondly, that the decrees of counsels, euen when they haue the consent of the legates, are of no force at all, if the legates shall agree to any thing which is a­gainst the Popes mind. Thirdly, that the Pope cannot translate or giue his authoritie vnto the legates. And con­sequently, that the Pope abuseth the whole world shame­fully, when he calleth together all bishops in the Christi­an world, to decide and determine controuersies in reli­gion; and for all that, will approoue nothing that they doe or decree, vnlesse it be agreeable to that which him­selfe decreeth apart in his chaire at home.

The third Conclusion.

Generall popish counsels in these our daies are euen as a nose of waxe; and the decrees thereof are as vncer­taine as the wind. I prooue this conclusion by very strong and irrefragable reasons. The Iesuit Bellarmine hath these words: Nos dicimus, Bellar. de concil. lib. 1. cap. 18. to. 1. concessum episcoporum in concilijs legitimis esse verum indicum concessum; & corum decreta & leges, necessario sequendas. VVe say, that the consistorie of bishops in law­full counsels, is the true assembly of iudges; and that their decrees and lawes must be obserued of necessitie.

But in another place the same Bellarmine singeth ano­ther song in these expresse words: Idem enim est, Bellar. de concil. lib. 2. cap. 11. siue pontifex expresse concilium reprobet, siue concilium agat contra pontificis sen­tentiam. For it is all one, whether the Pope disanull the counsell expressely, or the counsell doe against the Popes mind.

Againe, the same Bellarmine in another place auou­cheth, that the greater part of voices must beare the sway in counsels. These are his owne words: Non potest fieri, Bellar. de concil. lib. 1. cap. 21. vt ali­quando ad finem controuersiarū deueniatur, nisi detur locus maiori parti suffragiorum. It cannot be, that there should euer be made an end of controuersies, except the greater part of voices may haue the vpper hand.

[Page 124] Againe in another place,Bellarm. de conc. lib. 2. cap. 11. he hath these words; Est autem verumdecretum concilij, quod fit à maiori parte; alioqui nullum esset legitimum concilij decretum, cum semper aliqui dissentiant. It is the true decree of the councell, which hath the consent of the greater part: for otherwise there should be no lawfull de­cree made at all, seeing some doe euermore dissent.

This notwithstanding, their famous bishop Melchior Canns, Canus de locis lib. 5. cap. 5. pag. 164. doth roundly tell vs another tale. These are his ex­presse wordes. Non ita (que) quod in humanis conccssionibus fit, plu­rimum apud nos sententia praeualet; & paulo post; non enim numero haec indicantur, sed pondere: pondus autem concilijs dat summi ponti­ficis, & grauitas & authoritas. Quae si adsit, centum patres satis sunt, sin desit, nulli sint satis, sint quamlibet plurimi. It is not therefore with vs, as it is in humane assemblies, where moe voyces euer doe preuaile. For these matters are not to be iudged by number, but by weight. And the councels re­ceiue their weight, from the grauitie and authoritie of the Pope. Thus writeth our popish bishop Canus. Now who seeth not, that the decrees of popish councels, are as vncertaine as the wind? For the Iesuit telleth vs, that moe voyces must needes preuaile. But Melchior their re­nowmed bishop, is of another mind: that be they ma­ny, be they few, what part soeuer the Pope liketh, that same shall be true. For after the fathers haue fasted long, prayed, much, consulted grauely, deliberated maturely, decreed soberly, commanded strictly, and accursed se­uerely; neither others, nor yet themselues can tell, what shall be of force therein. For all must be as shall best con­tent the Popes humour, sitting right statelie in his chaire at Rome.

The fourth Conclusion.

No bishop can in these our dayes haue voices in coun­cels, but such as will first sweare obedience to the Pope, and promise to defend his cannon law. This conclusion though it containe grosse absurdities, yet is it so cleare, as [Page 125] Bellarmine that Iesuitical Cardinall cannot denie the same,Bellarm. de conc. lib. 1. cap. vit. These be his wordes. Istud iuramentum non tollit episcoporum libertatem, quae in concilijs necessaria est. Iurant enim se fore obedien­tes summo pontifici, quod intilligitur donec pontifex est, & dum iubet ea quae secundum Deum & sacros canones iubere potest: sed not iurant se non dicturos quod sentiunt in concilio, vel se no [...] posituros eum, si haereticum esse conuincant. This oath taketh not away the li­bertie of bishops, which in councels is necessarie. For they sweare that they will be obedient to the Pope; which is to be vnderstood, so long as he is Pope, and while he com­maundeth those things, which he may commaund agree­able to God, and to the holy cannons; but they sweare not, that they will not speake what they thinke in the councell, or that they will not depose the Pope if they prooue him to be an heretique.

Thus writeth Bellarminus, whose onely testimonie is most sufficient in all popish affaires: as who is the Popes sworne and tenderly beloued vassall, and whose bookes are dedicated to the Pope himselfe. Out of his wordes I note first, that all clergie men admitted to giue voyces in councels, are sworne simply wholy to obey the Popes constitutions.

Secondly, that the said persons are sworne to beleeue, that the Pope cannot erre in his iudiciall decrees of faith and manners; that no councels are of force, without the Popes confirmation; that councels confirmed by him, are aproued by the holy Ghost; that he can excommu­nicate and depose, all emperours, and empresses, all Kings and Queenes, all bishops and archbishops in the Christian world; that he can by his pardons deliuer all soules out of purgatorie, and goe himselfe to the deuill. For all these and a thousand like things, are strictly com­prised in his canons, and consequently in their most la­mentable oath.

Thirdly, that they are sworne to admit his decrees, who (as they freely grant) may for al that be an heretique.

[Page 126] Fourthly, that they are sworne to reuerence and obey his iudgement in all matters of faith, whom they may iudge and depose for heresie.

Fiftly, that their fundamentall article, by which they make the Pope iudge ouer all controuersies; is quite ouerthrowne, and turned vpside downe, in this Bellarminus his explication. For when he saith (VVhile he commaun­deth &c.) he graunteth euery bishop freedome to exa­mine and iudge, when the Pope commaundeth things agreeable to God and the canons. VVhich libertie, if the papists would constantly performe, all true Christians and perfect Catholikes, would soone agree with them. For none that beleeue aright, will denie obedience to the Pope, when he preacheth, teacheth, or commaundeth any thing which is agreeable to God and holy canons. But good Christians finding his canons to be disholy, and his decrees to be against God; doe thinke as Bellarmine here teacheth them, that they are not bound to obey him. And that the reader may fully vnderstand the abhomina­tion of the oath which all popish bishops sweare vnto the Pope; I will here set down the expresse words, as I find thē verbatim in the Popes owne decretals;Decret. libr. 2. tit. 24. cap. 4. Ego N. episcopus, ab hac hora fidelis ero S. Petro, sanctae (que) Romanae ecclesiae, domino (que) meo papae N. eius (que) successoribus canonicè intrantibus. Sequitur; papatū Romanae ecclesiae, & regulas sanctorum patrum adiutor ero, ad defen­dendum & retinendum contra omnes homines; sic me Deus adiuuet, & haec sancta euangelia. I (Iohn Watson) bishop, will be faith­full from this day forward, to Saint Peter and to the holy Church of Rome, and to my L. (Boniface) the Pope, and to his successors elected canonically; and I will be an hel­per to keepe and defend against all people, the Pope­dome or papall soueraigntie, and the rules of the holy fa­thers; so God me helpe, and the holy Gospel.

Loe here gentle reader, open and flat rebellion is re­quired, and by euangelicall oath confirmed, of subiects against their soueraignes. For, the bishops of euery coun­trie, [Page 127] are the subiects of the kings of the same countreys; and yet doe they sweare to defend the Popes vsurped iu­risdiction, and most bloodie tyrannie, against their natu­rall dread soueraignes. For they sweare to defend the Popes vsurped authoritie, against all people, without ex­ception. VVhich his diabolicall vsurped primacy, (as I haue prooued at large else where) extendeth it selfe to the translation of empires, kingdomes, and regalities.

These conclusions being well marked and remembred, the answere to the mightie obiection, which is as the foundation of poperie, will be plaine and easie, viz. that popish bishops may as well erre, when they are assembled together in a generall councell, as when they preach, teach, or write asunder. For first, the Pope himselfe will not shew his face in any councell, because the emperour must sit aboue him, as is euident by the first conclusion. Seconly, when the Pope sendeth his legates to councels to supplie his place, he doth but delude the world by that fact; seeing he cannot impart his authoritie vnto them, as by the second conclusion is apparant. Thirdly, popish councels and synodes in these after ages, are flexible as a nose of waxe, and as vncertaine as the weathercocke, as is clearely proued in the third conclusion. Fourthly, no bishops of late ages can haue voyces in popish coun­cels, but such as will first sweare obedience to the Pope, and promise by oath to defend his vsurped power, and most execrable canon law, as by the fourth conclusion will appeare. Fiftly, that decree is true and iust, which is concluded by the gerater part of the bishops there assem­bled; and yet the Pope sitting at Rome in his chaire, will reiect such decrees at his good pleasure, and define the sentence of fewer voyces to be of force. This obserua­tion is euidently confirmed, by the due proofes of the third conclusion. Sixtly the decrees of councels must needs be obeyed, as the papists tell vs; and yet the Pope may reiect them, and disanull them at his pleasure, euen [Page 128] dreaming in his chaire at home, or riding abroad on his white palfrey. This to be so is euident to euery one, that shall seriously peruse the third conclusion. Yea, our pa­pists of Rhemes in their commentary vpon the new testa­ment,Rhemes test. in act. 15. tell vs plainely and roundly; that the determina­on of councels is needlesse, because the Popes iudge­ment alone is infalliable. VVherefore they ad this clause to salue the Popes proceedings, That councels are called not for necessitie sake, but for the better contentation of the weake. I therefore conclude against the popish sup­posed bulwarke, that seeing all bishops may erre seueral­ly, as the Iesuit Bellarmine hath taught vs; and seeing also that the constitutions in popish councels are nothing else in deed, but the bare decrees of one onely bishop, as is alreadie prooued; it followeth of necessite, and cannot be denied, that all bishops in the popish Church may erre egregiously; and that as well iointly as seuerally, as is to be seene at large in my Golden ballance of triall: to which treatise I referre the reader for better satisfaction, both touching the Popes double person, and concerning his priuate and publike errors, In the interim, I must needs tell the papists; that a generall councell is aboue the Pope; that a generall councell hath power to depose the Pope; that a generall councell did de facto depose Iohn the 12 long sithence, and Iohn the 13 of that name; as I haue prooued at large by sound popish testimonie, in my Ana­tomie of popish tyrannie. And thus haue I prooued, that the sole and onely scripture inspired from heauen, is the infalliable rule of truth; and that all traditions must bee examined by the same, and then addmitted when they be consonant thereunto, not otherwise: howsoeuer an­tiquitie be pretended in that behalfe.

The fourth Proposition.

Popish vnwritten traditions are so vncertaine and doubtfull,Ratio. prima. that the best learned papists are at great con­tention [Page 129] about them, and cannot possibly be accorded therein. For the proofe of this proposition, it were ynough to call to mind that great and endlesse strife, which was in the Church about 1400 yeeres sithence, betweene Victor then Bishop of Rome and the bishops of Asia. The con­trouersie was among them, concerning the keeping of Easter. Tradition apostolicall was alledged earnestly, and both sides did stoutly defend the same.

The same tradition was in controuersie afore Polycarpus the bishop of Smyrna,Euseb. li. 5. hist. cap. 23. & cap. 24. per totum. and Anicetus the Bishop of Rome. But neither could Polycarpe perswade Anicetus, nor Anicetus perswade Polycarpus; albeit they both agreed as deere friends. The storie is set done at large, by Eusebius a lear­ned father and most famous historiographer. But Victor the Bishop of Rome dealt so furiously in that controuer­sie, that Ireneus and other bishops of Gallia, did sharply reprooue him for the same. VVhat need more bee said for the varietie and vncertaintie of traditious: For first, the bishops that thought and taught thus diuersly of tra­dions, did all of them liue within 200 yeeres after Christ; at which time the Church was in in good estate, and stay­ned with very few or no corruptions at all. Secondly, the one side doubtlesse, must needs be seduced with false and vnsound traditions: For apostolicall doctrine was vni­forme and constant, and could not possible bee contrarie to it selfe. Thirdly, Saint Policarpe, Polycrates, and the other bishops, did in those dayes make no more reckoning of the bishop of Romes opinion, than they did of another mans. Fourthly, they all were so farre from acknowledg­ing the bishop of Rome, to be the supreme head of the Church, and that he could not erre; that they all with vniforme assent affirmed him to defend a grosse errour, and to hold a false opinion; that they all reputed them­selues his equals, touching gouernment ecclesiasticall: that they all verie sharpely reprooued him, and with might and maine withstood his proceedings. VVhereas [Page 130] this day, if any bishops, magistrates, or other potentates in the world, (where poperie beareth the sway) should doe the like; they might all roundly be excommunicated, and not onely deposed from their iurisdiction, but also be burnt with fire an faggot for their paines. Fiftly, if Saint Polycarpe had cause in his time, being the flourishing age of the Church, to doubt of romish traditions; much more doubtlesse haue wee cause, at this day to stand in doubt thereof; in these doolefull dayes I say, in which iniquitie hath gotten the vpper hand; in which the bishops of Rome haue brought an huge multitude of errors into the Church, and seduced a great part of the Christian world.

Another controuersie touching traditions,Ratio secunda. Chrisost. hom. 47. in mat. col. 405. is for and about the keeping of Lent. For albeit Saint Chrysostome tel vs plainely, that Christ did not commaund vs to imitate his fast, but to learne of him to be humble and meeke in heart; yet doe the papists this day mordicus defend it, to be an apostolicall tradition; yea, many of them are so blin­ded and besotted with vnsauorie traditions and supersti­tious illusions, that they deeme it a greater sinne to eat flesh in Lent, than to commit adulterie, murder, or per­iurie.

Of this vnwritten tradition, falsly supposed apostolical,Euseb. lib. 5. hist. cap. 24. Eusebius Caesariensis, a famous historigrapher of great anti­quitie, writeth in this maner. Non solum de die paschae agiter controuersia, sed & de ipsa specie ieiunij. Quidam enim putant vno tantum die obseruari debere ieunium; alij, doubus; alij vero, plu­ribus; nonnulli etiam, quadraginta. Quae varietas obseruantiae non nunc primum, ne (que) nostris temporibus coepit, sed multò ante nos: ex illis vt opinor, qui non simpliciter quod ab initio traditū est, tenentes, in alium morem, vel per negligentiam, vel per imperitiam, postmo­dum dicidêre. The controuersie is not onely touching the day of Easter, but alos concerning the very king or man­ner of fasting. For some thinke, they must onely fast one day, some two dayes, others moe dayes; and there bee that thinke, they should fast fourtie. VVhich varietie of [Page 131] fasting did not now begin first, neither yet in our daies, but long before our time; I thinke by them, who keeping not simply what they receiued from the beginning, did afterward fall to another manner, either of negligence, or els of ignorance.

Socrates in like manner reporteth hystorically, that they differed no lesse in their manner of eating, than they did in their daies of abstaining. For some (saith he) would eat no liuing thing; othersome of liuing things, ate onely fish;Histor. tripart. lib. 9. cap. 38. some together with fish, did eat also birds; but some ate only bread, and others at night ate all kind of meates without difference. Yea, he telleth vs in the same place, that the Romans fast three weekes before Easter, besides the Sabboth and the Lords day. And that the Illyrians and Alexandrians do fast six weekes, and yet do they all tearm their fasts Lent. By which testimonies euery man may easi­ly perceiue, how doubtfull and vncertaine vnwritten tra­ditions be.

Thirdly,Ratio tertia. there was another endlesse controuersie con­cerning traditions, betweene the Greeks and the Latins; whether the Eucharist ought to be celebrated in leauened or in vnleauened bread.

Fourthly, Irenaeus a very auntient father, affirmeth out of Apostolicall tradition;Ratio quarta. Irenae. lib. 2. cap. 39. that Christ was fortie yeeres old, when he suffered his bitter passion. Papias another father, saith vpon the like traditiō, that Christ should raign 1000 yeeres after the generall resurrection.Euseb. lib. 3. cap. vlt. Andrad. de trad. lib. 2. p. 126 Basilius another holy father saith, that Zacharias the sonne of Barachias, slaine be­tweene the altar and the temple, was father to S. Iohn the baptist. These absurdities the papists are this day ashamed to hold; and yet did these fathers receiue them by Apo­stolicall so supposed tradition, as their own famous doctor Andradius graunteth willingly.

Fiftly, popish tradition telleth vs,Ratio quinta. that all the bishops of Rome one after another haue taught succesiuely the selfesame doctrine with S. Peter. Howbeit their own deere [Page 132] doctor and religious frier Nicholaus de Lyra, auoucheth plainely, roundly, and boldly, to the whole world, that many bishops of Rome haue fallen away from the faith, and become flat Apostataes. And least this my narration be thought strange vnto many, that our holy fathers the Popes should be Atheists or Apostataes, and that their own deare brethren, in high esteeme among them, would neuer so write of them; I will deale plainely in this impor­tant point, and after my wonted manner set downe his owne expresse words.Lyranus in cap. 16. mat. Thus doth he write: Ex quo patet, quod ecclesia non consistit in hominibus ratione potestatis vel dignita­tis, ecclesiasticae vel secularis; quia multi principes, et summi pontifi­ces, et alij inscriores, inuenti sunt a side apostatasse. Propter quod ecclesia consistit in illis personis, in quibus est notitia vera, et confessio fidei et veritatis. VVhereby it is euident, that the Church doth not consist in men by reason of power or dignitie, either ecclesiasticall or secular; because many princes and Popes, and others of the inferiour sort, are found to haue beene apostataes, and to haue swarued wholie from faith. For which cause, the Church consisteth in those per­sons, in whom, there is true knowledge, and confession of the faith and of the truth.

Thus writeth this learned papist (whom their owne so supposed martyr sir Thomas Moore called a great clearke, as he was indeed) whose words are well worthie to be en­grauen in marble with golden letters. For by his iudge­ment it is cleare and euident, that not they who sit in S. Peters chaire, are euer the true and lawfull successors of S. Peter, but they only and solely that confesse and preach S. Peters faith and doctrine: as also that their receiued maxime (vbi Papa, ibi Roma; vbi Roma, ibi ecclesia catholica) is false, vaine, and friuolous. VVe therefore this day im­pugne nothing in popish proceedings, but the selfesame indeed, which famous popish doctors reproued afore our time, and that in their publicke writings published free­ly to the whole world. VVhich thing, whosoeuer will seri­ously [Page 133] ponder as my selfe haue done, that man must per­force detest and abhorre all popish superstitious trumpe­rie. But of this argument I haue discoursed at large in my booke of Motiues.

Sixtly,Ratio sexta. popish tradition telleth vs, that the blessed vir­gine Marie, the true mother of true God and true man, was conceiued without originall sinne, and that the bi­shop of Rome did for that end ordaine a feastiuall day of her conception, to be kept vpon the eight of December. But by your leaue,Aquinas p. 3. q. 14. art. 3. ad primum. Bernard. epist. 174. p. 207. Aquinas their owne Angelicall Doctor affirmeth resolutely, that she was conceiued in originall sinne. Yea, their other holy doctor and deare frier Bernard doth very sharpely reprooue the Cathedrall Church of Lyons, because they obserued the feastiuitie of the con­ception of the blessed virgine; and the calleth that their practise, the noueltie of presumption, the mother of te­meritie, the sister of superstition, and the daughtet of le­uitie. That done, he addeth these words: Hoc non est vir­ginem honor are, sed honori detrahere. This is not to giue honour to the virgine,A. D. 1475. but to take honour from her. Yet Pope Sixtus the fourth did institute the feast of the conception.

Seuenthly,Ratio sept. popish tradition telleth vs, that the empe­rour Constantine, worthily surnamed the Great, was bapti­sed at Rome in a font, there remaining to this day, my self haue seene the same. Howbeit, Hieronymus, Eusebius, Socrates, Theodoritus, Sozomenus, Cassiodorus, and Pomponius, doe all af­firme very cōstantly, that he was baptised at Nichomedia.

Eightly,Ratio octaua. popish tradition hath brought flat idolatrie into the Church, teaching to adore them as saints and Gods friends, who were known heretickes, and professed enemies to God and his Church. This to be so, their owne deare friend, and brother Platina will tell them, when he affirmeth the dead corps of Hermannus to haue been wor­shipped for a saints reliques at Ferrara,Platina in vita Bonifacij octaui, vide Martinum so. onum▪ pag. 237. in append. the space of twen­tie yeares together; who for all that was an hereticke, as the same Platina auoucheth. VVhere two speciall things [Page 134] are to be obserued seriously: first, the vncertainetie of vn­written traditions: secondly, the danger in giuing credit to the same. Now, it remaineth for the better contenta­tion of the reader, to make answere to such obiections in defence of popish traditions, as the papists haue euer in their mouths, and boast of them, as if they were insoluble.

The first Obiection.

VVe doe not know, which bookes of the scripture are canonicall, and which are not, but onely by the vn­written traditions of the Church: And yet is this a matter of faith, and very necessarie vnto saluation.

The answere.

This is that mightie obiection, wherein the papists glo­rie and boast beyond all measure; and say more rashly than wisely, that it can neuer be truly answered. I there­fore shall desire the gentle reader to ponder well my words, and then to iudge of the matter, as right reason shall prescribe. My answere is this. First, there is great ods betweene the primitiue Church and the Church of late daies.Durand. in 3. s. d. 24 quaest. 1. VVhich to be so, the famous popish doctor Duran­dus will contest with me. For the Apostles (as Durand saith wisely) heard Christs doctrine, saw Christs myracles, and were replenished with the holy ghost; and consequently, they must needs be fit witnesses of all that Christ did and taught. But these adiuncts cannot be rightly ascribed to the late bishops of Rome and their cursed Iesuited brood. Secondly, the old testament was deliuered by the Iewes, and confirmed by Christ and his Apostles; and therefore as the papists admit that tradition, and withall doe reiect their other manifold vnwritten traditions, which the Iews in their Talmud affirme to be of Moses; Bellarm. tom. 1. col. 187. euen so doe we re­ceiue this tradition, and reiect all vnwritten traditions contrarie to the same. Thirdly, the bookes of the new te­stament are but an exposition of the law and the Pro­phets;Vide Aug. tom. 6. pag. 184. [Page 117] as I haue alreadie prooued in the first proposition of this present article: And consequently, it may be dis­cerned and tried by the same;Act. 17. v. 11. as the godly Bereans tried S. Paules preaching. Fourthly, when we affirme all things necessarie for our saluation, to be comprised and contai­ned in the scriptures; we then speake of them, as they are acknowledged and agreed vpon, both among the Iewes for the old Testament, in the which the new is compre­hended; and ioyntly for the old and new, throughout the Christian world. And so this tradition is not excep­ted, but virtually implied in our affirmation. Fiftly, the scriptures canonicall are discerned from not canonicall euen of themselues, like as light is discerned from darke­nesse, hardnesse from softnesse, and sweetnesse from bit­ternesse.Psal. 119. v. 105, 2. Pet. 1. v. 19. Thy word ô Lord (saith the Prophet) is a lan­terne to my feet, and a light vnto my pathes. VVe haue a right sure word of prophesie (saith S. Peter) whereunto if ye take heed, as vnto a light that shineth in a darke place, ye doe well, vntill the day dawne, and the day-starre arise in your hearts. Yet most true it is, that the faithfull onely can discerne it.2 Cor. 5. v. 3. For as the Apostle saith, If Christs gospell be hid, it is hid in them that perish: in whom the God of this world hath blinded the minds of them which beleeue not, least the light of the Gospell of the glorie of Christ should shine vnto them. And the same Apostle elswhere teacheth vs,1. Cor. 2. v. 15. that the spirituall man iudgeth all things. VVhich text, two famous papists, Lyranus and Carthusianus doe expound,1. Ioh. 2. v. 27. of things partaining to our saluation. S. Iohn is consonant to S. Paule, affirming, that the vnction which the faithfull haue receiued, doth teach them all things. Yea, Christ himselfe saith, That his sheepe doe heare his voice.Ioh. 10. 3. ibid. v. 4. And he addeth, that they follow him, because they know his voyce. But doubtlesse, if Christs sheepe, that is, the faithfull and Gods elect people, doe know his voice, and therefore doe follow him; then by a necessarie con­sequence, they can know Christ speaking to them in the [Page 136] holy scripture, and so can discerne holy writ from pro­phane fables or stories, Melchior Canus a famous papist, ma­keth this case cleere; his words are set downe in my Gol­den ballance.

Sixtly, the formall obiect of our faith is veritas prima, the first veritie,De diuinis no­minib. cap. 7. or God himselfe, as Dionysius Areopagita. tel­leth vs. Yea, Aquinas that famous papist surnamed their angelicall doctor, teacheth the selfe same doctrine. Non enim fides inquit, diuina alicui assentitur, nisi quia est à Deo reuela­tum. Aquinas, 2. 2. q. 1. art. 1. 0. For diuine faith (saith Aquinas) will not yeeld assent to any thing, vnlesse it be reuealed of God. VVhich truth of doctrine, Saint Austen confirmeth in these gol­den wordes;Augustin. in epist. Ioannis, tract. 3. tom. 9. col. 408. Iam hic videte magnum sacramentum fratres, sonus verborum nostrorum aures percutit, magister intus est. Nolite putare quenquam hominem aliquid discere ab homine. Ad monere possumus per strepitum vocis nostra: si non sit intus qui doceat, inanis fit strepi­tus noster. Quam multi hine indocti exituri sunt? quantum ad [...] pertinet, omnibus locutus sum, sed quibus vnctio illa intus non lo­quitur, quos spiritus sanstus intus non docet, indocti redeunt. Magi­steria forinsecus adiutoria quaedam sunt & admonitiones, Cathedram in coelo habet qui corda docet. Sequitur; interior Magister est qui do­cet, Christus docet, inspiratio ipsius docet. Vbi illius inspiratio & illius vnctio non est, forinsecus inanit [...]r perstrepunt verba. Now bre­thren, behold here a great sacrament; the sound of our wordes pierceth your eares, but the master that tea­cheth you is within. Thinke not, that man learneth any thing of man: we (preachers) may admonish by the sound of wordes; but if he be not within that teacheth, in vaine is our sound; how many will goe hence vntaught? For mine owne part, I haue spoken to all; but to whom that vnction speaketh not inwardly, whom the holy Ghost teacheth not within, they goe home vntaught, as they came. The outward teachings are some helpes and admonitions; but he sitteth in his chaire in heauen, that teacheth the heart, The master is within that teacheth, it is Christ that teacheth, it is his inspiration that instru­cteth. [Page 137] VVhere his inspiration and his vnction is not, there the outward noise of words is in vaine: Thus writeth this auntient and learned father, with many moe wordes to the like effect. By whose doctrine we may learne suffici­ently, if nothing else were said: that howsoeuer men teach, how soeuer Paul plant, or Apollo water, yet will no increase follow, vnlesse God giue the same. I therefore conclude, that we doe not beleeue this booke or that booke to be canonicall, because this man or that man, or the Church saith soe; but that the scripture is [...]; that it hath in it selfe that dignity, which is worthy to haue cre­dite; that the declaration of the Church, doth not make vs beleeue the scripture, but is only an outward helpe to bring vs thereunto; and that wee therefore indeed be­leeue the scripture, and this or that booke to be canoni­call, because God doth inwardly teach vs and persuade our hearts so to beleeue. For certes if wee should be­leeue, that this or that booke is canonicall scripture, be­cause the Church saith so; then should the formall obiect of our faith, and the vltimate tearme into which our faith is resolued, be man, and not prima veritas, or God him­selfe, as Areopagita and Aquinas teach vs. And it will not helpe the papists to replie out of Saint Augustine, That he would not haue beleeued the Gospell, vnlesse the autho­ritie of the Church had mooued him thereunto. For S. Austens wordes are these;August. contra epistol. Manich. tom. 6. cap. 5. pag. 79. Nisi authoritas ecclesiae me commoue­ret. I would not haue beleeued the Gospell, if the autho­ritie of the Church had not iointly mooued me therunto. For wee must note, that there is a great difference be­tweene mouere and commouere. Mouere is to moue absolutely, and a part by it selfe; but commouere is to moue respectiue­ly and together with another thing. So Saint Austens meaning is nothing else indeed but that the authoritie of the Church did outwardly concurre with the inward motion of the holy Ghost, to bring him to the faith of the Gospel. Now, Saint Austens meaning is this and and none [Page 138] other; viz. that he maketh much more account of the vniuersall Church, than of Manichaeus and his complices; because the Church did first moue him to heare the Gos­pel preached, and to giue some credit to the same. I say (some credit) because the Churches authoritie did onely moue him to beleeue the Gospell, fide humana, non fide di­uina: with humane faith, not with faith diuine. For this diuine faith, with which we Christians doe beleeue the Gospell, proceedeth not from the outward teaching of man, but from the inward instruction of the holy Ghost, as I haue out of the same Austen already prooued. Yea, the selfe same father declareth in the same chapter, that he speaketh of himselfe as being a Manichee, not as being a Christian. What (faith Saint Austen) wouldest thou say to him, that should answere thee, I doe not beleeue it, but for the authority of the Church? And this sense is con­firmed, because S. Austen cōfesseth in the very same chap­ter, that the authoritie of the Gospel is aboue the autho­ritie of the Church.Cap. 5. cont. epist. fundam. And in the chapter aforegoing, after he hath told vs what kept him in the catholike Church, and there hath reckoned vp the consent of peoples and nations; authoritie begun with miracles, nourished with hope, increased with charitie, established with antiquitie: succession of priests from Saint Peters seat, and the name of Catholike; he addeth, that though these things bee great motiues to keepe him in the vnitie of the Church, yet must the truth of the scriptures be preferred before them all. In regard whereof, he promiseth to giue more credit to Manichaeus than to the Church, and to yeeld vn­to his doctrine, if he shalbe able to prooue it out of the scripture: In the meane while he must giue him leaue to preferre the credit of the catholike Church before his bare wordes, especially, seeing the Church, but not Manichaeus, was the outward meanes and externall helpe, that brought him to the faith of the Gospell.

The second Obiection.

The baptisme of infants is a matter of faith, but not conteined in the holy scriptures, ergo not all things ne­cessarie for mans saluation are therein to be found.

The Answere.

I answere, that it is contained in the scriptures, and I proue it by sundry reasons. The first argument is drawne from the couenant. For infants being within the coue­nant, ought not to be debarred from the signe and seale thereof.Gen. 17. v. 7. I will establish my couenant betweene me and thee, and thy seed after thee in their generations, for an euerlasting couenant, to be God to thee, and to thy seed after thee.Gen. 15. Againe, you are the children of the Prophets, and of the couenant which God made to our fathers,Gen. 22. say­ing to Abraham, euen in thy seede shall all the families of the earth be blessed.Act. 3. v. 25. Againe, repent, and be euery one of you b [...]ptised in the name of Iesus Christ,Act. 2. v. 38, 39. for the remission of sinnes, and ye shall receiue the gift of the holy Ghost. For the promise was made to you, and to your children, and to all that are a farre off, euen so many as the Lord our God shall call.Rom. 11. v. 16. Againe, if the first fruits be holy, the whole lumpe also is holy: And if the roote be holy, the boughes also.Matt. 19. v. 14. Againe, suffer the yong children, and stay them not from comming vnto me: for to such belongeth the kingdome of heauen And where Saint Matthew hath little children,Luke 18. v. 17. then S. Luke hath, [...]; infants, which can neither vnderstand,1. Cor. 7. v. 14. nor come. Againe, your children are holy yong children therefore must be baptised.

The second argument is drawne from the analogie of the figure of the old testament. For circumcision to which baptisme succeeded,Coloss 2. v. 11. did pertaine to both ages, as well to yoong as to old. In whom also yee are circumcised with circumcisiō made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh subiect to sinne, by the circumcision of Christ: buried with him in baptisme, in whom yee are also risen [Page 140] againe through the faith of the operation of God, who raised him vp from the dead. Thus saith Saint Paul: by whose wordes we may learne sufficiently, that baptisme did succeed to circumcision, for the same end, vse, and purpose: viz. that by it we may, putting off the bodie of sinfull flesh, be buried together with Christ, and rise again with him through faith.

The third argument is drawne, from the practise of the Church.Mat. 28. v. 19. For the Apostles of our Lord Iesus were com­maunded to baptise all sorts of people withour excepti­on. Goe therefore, and teach all nations, baptising them in the name of the father, and of the sonne, and of the ho­ly Ghost. Againe, we read in the historie Apostolical, that the whole house of Lydia was baptised,Act. 16. v. 15. neither yong nor old being excepted.Act. 16. v. 33. Againe, we may find in the acts, that the keeper of the prison at Philippos was baptised, & all they of his houshold incontinent.1. Cor. 1. v. 16. Againe in another place, we may read, that the whole family of Stepha [...]s was baptised, not one at all exempted.

The Obiection.

Infants haue no faith, ergo they may not be baptised.

The Answere.

I denie the antecedent, because their faith and profes­sion is this; to be borne of the faithfull, in the vnitie of the Catholike Church. Againe though they haue not actuall faith,Mar. 9 v. 42. yet haue they faith fundamentallie, and by inclina­tion. In which sense our Lord Iesus doth reckon them among the faithfull, when he saith in this manner; VVho­soeuer shall offend one of these little ones that beleeue in me, it is better for him if a milstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea. Infants therefore, when they are baptized in the Church for faithfull, are then deemed to beleeue after their manner. VVho, al­beit they haue not faith in act, yet haue they the spirit, [Page 341] and vertue, or foundation of faith, by Gods operation in them. Neither ought this thing to seeme strange vnto vs. For, if the infants of the wicked ones haue infidelitie and impietie, though not in act yet in inclinatiō by nature, as writers graunt; then truly may it be said, that the infants of the faithfull haue faith and pietie, though not in act, yet in inclination by grace. For grace cannot be of lesse force through Christ, than nature through the fall of Adam. for God saith plainely;Gen. 17. v. 7. I will be thy God, and the God of thy seed after thee.

The third Obiection.

VVee beleeue the trinitie of persons in vnitie of sub­stance, but this is not in the scripture, Ergo.

The answere.

I denie the assumption; for the trinitie of persons is plainly auouched in the holy Gospel, where it is thus writ­ten;Ioh. 14. v. 26. But the comforter which is the holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things. Thus saith our Lord Iesus. In which words, we see mention made of three distinct persons; first, of the Father, which sendeth; secondly, of the holy Ghost, which is sent; thirdly, of the Sonne, in whose name he is sent.1. Ioh. 5. v. 7. Againe in another place it is thus written; There are three which beare recorde in heauen, the Father, the VVord, and the holy Ghost, and these three are one Item Matth. 28. verse 19.

The fourth Obiection.

It is not to be found in the holy scrpture, that Christ is consubstantiall, and of the same substance which the Fa­ther. Ergo.

The Answere.

The antecedent is false.Zachar. cap. 13. v. 7. For first, in the prophesie of [Page 142] Zacharias I find these wordes; arise O sword, vpon my shepheard, and vpon the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hostes.Esa. 9. 6. Secondly, in many places of the new te­stament.Joh. 10. 30. First, in these words; I and my Father are one. Secondly,Ioh. 10. 38. in these words; If ye beleeue not me, beleeue the works; that ye may know and beleeue, that the Fa­ther is in me,Phillip. 2. 6. and I in him. Thirdly, in these words; VVho being in the forme of God,Heb. 1. 3. thought it no robberie to be equall with God.Io. 1. 2. Fourthly,Mat. 1. 21. & v. 23. in these words; She shall bring foorth a sonne, and thou shalt call his name Iesus; for he shall saue his people from their sinnes. For this respect saith holy Athanasius, Athanas. de decret. Nic. synod. tom. 2. that albeit the words be not expres­sed in the scriptures, yet haue they that meaning which holy writ approoueth, Answere ô papists, if ye can; if not, re­pent for shame, and yeeld vnto the truth.

The eight Article. Of the im­possibilitie of keeping Gods commandements, in popish sense.

TOuching this article, the reader must seriously obserue with me this adiunct, (in popish sense) because it is both em­phaticall and of great moment. For I will not affirme simply and absolutely, that Gods children can not keepe his commandements in a godlie sense and Christian meaning; but this I constantly denie, and at this presēt intend in God to proue the same effectually against all Iesuits and Iesuited papists, That none haue kept, do keepe, or can keepe Gods commaundements in popish sense and meaning. viz. that none are so pure, holy, and free from sinne, that they can stand with God in iudg­ment, and challenge eternall life, as of debt due vnto them for their holy life. Marke well gentle reader, my dis­course; for I hope in God to hit the naile on the head, and to set downe that which will be as heauie to the pa­pists heart, as a piece of lead.

The Apostle telleth vs in plaine and very expresse words, That the best liuers vpon earth are sinners. In multis enim offendimus omnes. For we all offend in manie things. But certes,Iacob. 3. v. 2. if it be true, as it is most true indeed, (for S. Iames being inspired with the holy Ghost cannot lie) That the holy Apostles committed many sinnes; then doubtlesse it is not in euerie ones power, to keepe Gods commande­ments; neither will it helpe the papists to distinguish af­ter [Page 144] their wonted manner, of mortall and veniall sinnes. For, besides that I haue proued alreadie in the sixt Arti­cle, that euery sinne is mortall in it owne proper nature; both the Greek word [...], which signifieth the transgres­sion of the law; and also the Hebrew word [...], which signifieth a declining from the right way, doe eui­dentlie conuince the same. For it can neuer be trulie said; that hee performeth and keepeth the law, which transgresseth the law or swarueth from the same. It is the truth which S. Paul alledgeth out of the law;Gal. 3. v. 10. Cursed is euerie one that abideth not in all things which are writ­ten in the book of the law, to doe them. It is also the truth, which S. Iames saith;lac. 2. v. 10. That whosoeuer keepeth the whole law, and yet faileth in one point, is become guiltie of all. To which may be added innumerable texts, both of the old and new testament, that the best liuers vpon earth doe sinne, and transgresse Gods commaundements. Holy Moses telleth vs in the first booke of his Pentatench, That when God saw that the wickednes of man was great on the earth,Gen. 6. v. 5. & that all the imaginations of the thoughts of his heart were only euill continually, then it repented God that he had made mā on the earth. Iob telleth vs, That God found no stedfastnes in his Saints;Iob. 15. v. 15. & 35. 5. yea, he saith far­ther, That the heauens are not cleane in his sight. And he addeth these wordes; How much more is man ab­hominable and filthie, which drinketh iniquitie like wa­ter. The kingly Prophet saith, that in Gods sight, none that liueth can be iustified.Psal, 143. v. 2. VVise Salomon saith, that no man living is able truely to say,Prou. 20. v. 9. he is cleane from sinne. The same wise man saith in like maner, that the iust man sinneth many times.Prou. 24. 16. Esay saith, that all our righteousnes is as filthie clouts.Esa. 64. 6 Esdras saith, he was ashamed for his own sinnes,Esdr. 9. 6. and for the sinnes of the people, because their tres­passe was growne vp vnto heauen.Rom. 3. v. 9. 10. 12. 19. 23. Saint Paul sheweth at large, that all men are sinners, and that no man is able to be iustified by his workes. All saith hee, both Iewes and [Page 145] Gentiles are vnder sinne. There is none righteous, no not one: they haue all gone out of the way; they haue all beene made altogether vnprofitable: there is none that doth good, no not one. Now we know, that whatsoeuer the law saith, it saith to them which are vnder the law, that euery mouth may be stopped, and all the world be subiect to the iudgement of God. There is no difference, for all hane sinned, and are depriued of the glory of God, and are iustified freely by his grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Iesus. Againe in another place, he hath these words:Rom. 10. v. 3. For they being ignorant of the righteous­nesse of God, & going about to stablish their owne righ­teousnesse, haue not submitted themselues to the righte­nesse of God: the case is cleere and euident. For as the Prophet saith,Psal. 130. v. 3. 4. If God should marke our iniquities, and re­ward vs after our deeds, none of vs were able to endure it.

Now, let vs heare S. Austens graue sentence, concer­ning this controuersie.August. de do­ctrina Christ. lib. 1. ca. 22. to. 3. Diliges inquit, proximum tuum sicut te­ipsum: Deum vero ex toto corde, & ex tota anima; & ex tota mente, vt omnes cogitationes tuas, & omnem vitam, & omnem intellectū in illū conferas, à quo habes ea ipsa quae confers. Cum autē ait, toto corde, tota anima, tota mente, nullam vitae nostrae partem reliquit, quae va­care debeat, & quasi locum dare, vt alia ve velit frui. Thou shalt loue thy neighbour, saith he, as thy selfe; but God with thy whole heart, with thy whole soule, and with thy whole mind; that thou maist cōferre vpon him all thy thoughts, and all thy life, & all thine vnderstanding, of whom thou hast receiued the selfe same which thou doest conferre or giue. But when he saith, with all thy heart, with all thy soule, with all thy mind, he hath left no part of our life which may be vacant, and as it were giue place, to haue fruition of any other thing.

The same Saint Austen saith againe in another place; That this commaundement of louing God with all our heart, cannot be perfecty fulfilled of any man in this life: [Page 146] These are his wordes;August. de per­fect iustit. ra­tioc. 16. col. 969. tom. 7. In quae plenitudinc charitatis praeceptum illud implebitur: Diliges dominū Deum tuū ex toto corde tuo, & ex tota anima tua, & ex tota mente tua. Nam cum est adhuc aliquid carnalis concupiscentiae, quod vel continendo froenetur, non omnimodo ex tota anima diligitur Deus. Non enim caro sine anima concupiscit, quamuis caro concupiscere dicatur, quia carn aliter anima concupiscit. Tunc erit iustus sine vllo omnino peccato, quia nulla lex erit in mēbris eius repugnans legi mentis eius, sed prorsus toto corde, tota anima, tota mente diligit Deum, quod est primum summum (que) praeceptum. Cur ergo non praeciperetur homini ista perfectio, quamuis cam in hac vita nemo habeat? Non enim rectè curritur, si quo currendum est nescia­tur. In which fulnesse of charitie that commaundement shall bee fulfilled. Thou shalt loue thy Lord thy God, with all thy heart, and with all thy soule, and with all thy mind. For whiles any part of carnall concupiscence is re­mayning, which may be suppressed by containing, God so long is not in euery respect loued with all the soule. For the flesh coueteth not without the soule, albeit the flesh be sayd to couet, because the soule coueteth carnally. Then shall the iust bee without any sinne at all, because there shall be no law in his members rebelling against the law of his mind, but he shall loue God wholy with all his heart, with all his soule, and with all his mind, which is the first & chiefest commandement. VVhy therefore should not this perfection be cōmanded vnto man, although no man can haue it in this life? For they cannot run aright, who know not whither they should run.

Out of these words of this holy father, and great lear­ned writer, I gather these worthy lessons: First, that by Gods holy commaundement all men are bound to loue God, with all their heart, with all their soule, and with all their mind: Secondly, that whosoeuer suffereth any part of his life to be vacant, and to haue fruition of any other thing, cannot fulfill this precept of louing God: Third­ly, that this precept of loue, cannot be perfectly kept in [Page 147] this life: Fourthly, that originall concupiscence remaining in the regenerat, is the hinderance and breach of this commaundement. Fiftly: that this perfection of loue is lawfully commaunded, albeit none liuing doth or can at­taine vnto it. And consequently, that it is not possible to any pure mortall man, perfectly to keepe Gods comman­dements.

Aquinas the Popes great doctor and canonised saint, graunteth freely and affirmeth constantly, That the pre­cept of louing God with the whole heart, cannot be kept perfectly in this life. These are his owne expresse words: Respondeo, Aquinat. 22. q. 44. art. 6. in corp. quod praceptum aliquod dupliciter potest impleri. Vno modo perfectè, alio modo imperfectè. Sequitur; intendit Deus per hoc praeceptum, vt homo Deo totaliter vniatur: quod fiet in patria, quan­do Deus erit omnia in omnibus, vt dicitur, 1. Cor. 15. & ideo plenè & perfectè in patria implebitur hoc praeceptum: In via autem impletur, sed imperfectè. I answere, that the precept may be fulfilled two wayes; one way perfectly, another many vnperfectly. God intendeth by this precept, to haue man wholy vnited to himselfe; which shall be effected in hea­uen, when God shall be all in all. And therefore this precept shall be fulfilled perfectly and fully in the coun­trey, but in the way it is fulfilled vnperfectly. (That is to say, perfectly in heauen, which is called our coun­trey; and vnperfectly on earth, which is tearmed the way.)

Out of these golden wordes of the famous schoole-doctour Aquinas, (whose doctrine two Popes haue au­thorized for authenticall) I obserue these points of great importance. First, that God by commaunding all men to loue him with their whole hearts, did intend to vnite all men wholy vnto himselfe; so as no part of their loue should be left vacant, to be bestowed otherwise. Second­ly, that this precept of louing God as wee are bound, can be kept perfectly in heauen onely. Thirdly, that it [Page 148] is not impossible in this life, to keepe Gods commaun­dements in a godly sense and meaning; because we may keepe them in some sort and measure, though not in that high and perfect degree which the law requireth at our handes. For our great popish doctour (marke well his wordes) saith plainely and constantly; In via impletur pre­ceptum, sed imperfectè. The precept is fulfilled in the way, (or in this life) but vnperfecty. So that, when the pa­pists triumphing before the victorie, cry out against vs with open mouths, That we charge God with impietie, affirming him to haue commaunded to man things im­posible: they may as well and with as much right and reason, exclaime against their owne deere doctor Aquinas, and consequently against their owne holy fathers the Popes,August. Hun­naeus in epist. ad Pium 5. Vrbanus the fourth, and Innocentus the fift; who haue commanded and strictly charged to receiue his doctrine as sent from heauen, concerning both faith and maners. For my selfe doe here teach the selfe some doctrine with Aquinas, as his owne expresse wordes very flatly purport. For my wonted manner is, to confute poperie by the te­stimonies of best approoued popish writers.

Bernardus the Popes deere monke and reuerend Ab­bot, iumpeth with Aquinas in these expresse wordes;Berner. in cant. serm. 50. tom. 1. col. 931. Quomodo ergo iubenda fuit, quae implenda nullo modo erat? Aut si placet tibi magis de affestuali datum fuisse mandatum, non inde contendo, dummodo aquiescas & tu mihi, quod minimè in vita ista ab aliquo hominum possit, vel poterit ad impleri. Quis enim sibi ar­rogare id audeat, quod Paulus ipse fatetur non comprehendisse? nec latuit preceptorem, precepti pondus hominum excedere vires: sed iudicauit vtile ex hoc ipso suae illos insufficientiae admoncri, & vt sci­rent sanè, ad quem iustitiae finem niti pro viribus oporteret. Ergo mandando impossibilia, non preuaricatores homines fecit, sed humiles, vt omne os obstruatur, & subditus fiat omnis mundus Deo: quia ex operibus legis, non iustificabitur omnis caro coram illo. Accipi­entes quippe mandatum, & sentientes defectum, clamabimus in [Page 149] coelum, & miserebitur nostri Deus; & sciemus in illa die, quiae non ex operibus iustitiae quae fecimus nos, sed ecundum suam miseri­cordiam saluos not fecit. How then was it commanded, which by no meanes could be performed? or if thou rather thinke, that the commaundement was giuen of affectuall charitie, I will not contend with thee therein; so thou al­so wilt yeeld vnto me herein, That no man in this life is able to keepe and performe the same. For who dareth to challenge that to himselfe, which Paul confesseth hee could neuer attaine vnto? neither for all that was the commander ignorant, that the weight of the comman­dement did surpasse the power and reach of man; but he deemed it a thing profitable for them, that hereby they should be admonished of their insufficiencie, and might know to what end of righteousnesse they ought with their best indeuours to applie themselues. Therefore by commaunding things impossible, he made not men pre­uaricatours, but humble; that euery mouth might bee stopped, and all the world made subiect vnto God; be­cause by the workes of the law, no flesh can be iustified in his sight. But after that we haue receiued the comman­dement, and thereby perceiue our owne want, we must cry vp to heauen, and God will haue mercie on vs; and then shall we know, that he hath saued vs, not for the workes of righteousnesse which we haue done, but ac­cording to his owne (free) mercy. Thus writeth their own deere Abbot Bernardus: out of whose wordes, I obserue many excellent documents. First, that God hath giuen vs those commaundements, which we cannot possibly keepe and performe. Secondly, that God knew right wel, that it is not in our power to keepe his lawes. Thirdly, that God commanded to vs impossible things, that we might therby acknowledge our owne insufficiency, & wholy re­ly vpon his fauor, help, & mercy. Fourthly, that we might hereby know, that our saluation proceedeth of mercie, [Page 150] and not of the workes of righteousnesse which we haue done, and wherein the papists seeke merit and iustificati­on. So then, the doctrine which I now teach, is not my doctrine onely, but the flat doctrnie of Saint Austen; yea, and the selfe same doctrine which the best learned papists haue taught before me.

That it is not possible for man, to keepe Gods com­maundements perfectly in this life; no other proofe is needfull, saue onely the Lords Prayer. For in it, the best liuer vpon earth is taught, to aske forgiuenesse and pardon for his sinnes: and doubtles where pardon must be demaunded, there the law is not exactly obserued. The vsuall practise of all papists,Nota, quod ne veniale quidem peccaium potest in deum referri. Ergo auertit a fine vltimo. Ergo est peccatū mortale. is consectarie hereunto. For in their ordinarie and daiely masses, as also in their quotidian auricular confessions, they confesse three se­uerall times their most grieuous sinnes, in these wordes; Mea culpa, mea culpa, me a maxima culpa. In which publique daily confession, they must eitheir confesse, that they deale hypocritically, dissemble damnably, and mocke God most irreligiously; or els doubtles, that they can­not keepe Gods commaundements, as they beare the world in hand they do. Now it remaineth, that I answere to some popish obiections, which the papists deeme and repute insoluble.

The first Obiection.

The young man told Christ,Mat. 29. v. 20. that he had kept all the commaundements, from his youth vp. VVhom Christ reprooued not, as though he had not kept them indeed, but exhorted him to perfection, in selling all his posses­sions.

The Answere.

I Answere both with Saint Austen and Saint Hierome, [Page 151] That the young man answered vntrulie, when hee said, hee had kept all the commaundements. Saint Austen hath these words;August. epist. 89. col. 264. Ille quidem tristis, abscessit, qui viderit quem­admodum illa legis mandata seruauerat. Puto enim quod se arro­gantius quam verius, seruasse responderat. He went away sor­rowfull, who knew how hee had kept the commaunde­ments of the low. For I thinke, he answered more ar­rogantlie then trulie, that he had kept them. Sant Hie­rome saith plainlie and roundlie, Mentitur, He lieth. And the circumstance of the texts going afore and following, doe purport no lesse vnto vs.

The second Obiection.

Saint Paul saith,Rom. 2. v. 13. For note the hearers of the law are iust with God, but the doers of the law shall be iustified.

The Answere.

Saint Paul meaneth nothing lesse in these words, than that a man in Gods sight can be iustified his workes: But he goeth about to conclude all vnder sinne, and so to haue neede of the glorie of God; because none is able to performe and keepe the law. For his whole scope and in­tent is this; to proue that the Iewes did in vaine boast a­gainst the Gentiles that they had the law, seeing they did not keepe the same. As if he had said; if ye will be iustified by the law, ye must performe and keepe the law, which ye doe not. for not the hearers of the law, but the doers are iust in Gods sight. I willinglie graunt, and will it not denie; that if any of you papists can perfectly obserue and keepe the law, the same papist shall be iustified by the merit of his workes: but if any such papist could be found, (which I am sure is impossible) yet should that papist heare what Saint Paul saith of holy Abraham. For saith he, if A­braham [Page 152] were iustified by works,Rom. 4. v. 2. he hath glorie, (or where­rein to boast) but not before God.

The third Obiection.

If thou wilt enter into life,Mat. 19. v. 17. keepe the commaun­dements.

The answere.

Our Sauiour Christ doth not shew in this place, how men doe attaine vnto eternall life; but hee sheweth what perfect obseruation of Gods law is required of them, who looke to bee iustified by the workes of the law. This my answere is cleered, by the que­stion proposed vnto Christ, which was this; VVhat good thing shall I doe, that I may haue eternall life? Christ answered; If thou wilt haue eternall life by doing good workes, then must thou keepe Gods commaundements.Vide B. in. 3. cap. ad gal. But this is impossible, as is alreadie prooued.

The fourth Obiection.

Christ saith,Mat. 11. v. 30. My yoke is easie, and my burden is light.1. Iohn. 5. v. 3. And Saint Iohn saith, his commaundements are not heauie.

The Answere.

The law of God is impossible to be kept in such per­fection,Non lequitur hic de iugo & onere legit, sed Euangeli [...]. as the same requireth at our hands, as I haue alreadie proued. Neuerthelesse, the yoke of Christ is sweete, and his burden light, to all them which beleeue in him.Act. 15. 10, 11. For (as Saint Peter saith) The yoke of the law [Page 153] is such a burden, as neither we, nor our fathers were able to beare: but we belleeue to be saued by the grace of our Lord Iesus.Gal. 3. 13. Christ hath taken away the curse of the law:Rom. 8. 3. Christ hath satisfied for our transgressions of the law:Col. 2. 14. Christ sent by God in the similitude of sin­full flesh, blotted out the hand writing that was against vs, and nailed it vpon the crosse. There is no condem­nation to them which are in Christ Iesus.Rom. 8. 1. Christ is our iustification, our sanctification, and our redemption. By faith in Christ, wee doe ouercome the world.1. Cor. 1. 30. Christ is so mercifull,1. Ioh. 5. 4. that hee refresheth all those which come vnto him.Mat. 11. v. 28. This being so, wee may trulie say, that in Christ wee fulfill the law: because he is our righteous­nesse, our sanctification, and our redemption; be­cause hee hath ouercome death; because hee hath clo­thed vs with his righteousnesse;Col. 2. 14. because hee hath coue­red our nakednesse with his garments;1. Joh. 5. 4. because in him wee haue gotten the victorie,Act. 15. 11. ouer hell, death, and damnation.

This is it that Saint Austen saith,August. libr. 1. retract. cap. 19. in these golden wordes; Omnia ergo mandata tunc facta deputantur, quando quicquid non fit, ignoseitur. All the commaundements are then reputed as done, when whatsoeuer is not done, is (of mercie) forgiuen.

The first Obiection.

Saint Hierome saith,Hieron. cont. [...]lag. lib. 3. & 4. He is to be detested as a blasphe­mer, that affirmeth God to haue commaunded any im­possible thing.August. serm. 6. de temp tom. 10. And Saint Austen saith, God can nei­ther commaund things impossible, because he is iust, neither condemne a man for that which he could not auoyd, because he is mercifull.

The Answere.

I answere first, that hee is to bee detested as a blasphe­mer, that affirmeth God to haue commaunded any thing vnto man, which was either impossible in it selfe to be done, or to be done of man as man. I say (im­possible in it selfe) because otherwise, Christ himselfe could not haue fulfilled the law: which to hold, is flat blasphemie against the Sonne of God. I say (im­possible to bee done of man, as man;) because other­wise, the Protoplast Adam could not haue kept the law: which to hold, is most absurd, and against all lear­ning and learned men.

Secondly, that he is to be detested as a blasphemer, whosoeuer affirmeth, that any man in particular be­ing a true beleeuer, cannot keepe and fulfill Gods commaundements; in him, of whose fulnesse we haue all receiued,Ioh. 1. 16. and whose righteousnesse is ours, by his free gift and grace.1. Cor. 1. 30.

Thirdly, that Gods commaundements may in some measure (that is to say, imperfectly) bee kept euen in this life, of all the regenerate. And this not my answere, but euen that answere which the famous papist Aquinas maketh,Aquinas, 22. q. 44. art. 6. ad prim. to the obiection out of Saint Hierome: whose answere is very sufficient to stop the mouthes of all papists, seeing his testimonie is to them as if it were an oracle from Heauen. To Saint Au­sten the same answere is very consonant, as both by the precedent and subsequent words will appeare. And if there be any papists,Omittatur haec clausula, meo iudicio. whose appetites this answere can­not satisfie: of those papist I would demaund this one thing,This is a Di­lemma which no papists can auoyd. VVhy infants not baptised before their death, are iustlie damned for originall sinne, seeing they could not possibly auoid the same?

[Page 155] He that would know Saint Austens meaning more fully, both touching this obiection and others of like qualitie, may reade the same holy Father in his booke De Corrept. & gratia; and therein find much excellent matter for his contention in that behalfe.August. de correp. & grat. cap. 12. & 13. tom. 7. Answere ô papists, if ye can; if not, repent for shame, and yeeld vnto the truth.


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