A MIRROR FOR The Multitude, OR GLASSE, Wherein maie be seene, the vio­lence, the error, the weaknesse, and rash consent, of the multitude, and the daungerous resolution of such, as without re­gard of the truth, endeuour to [...]unne and ioyne themselues with the multitude: With a necessary conclusion, that it is not the name, or title of a Protestant, Christian, or Ca­tholicke, but the true imitation of Christ, that maketh a Christian.

By I. N.


Caueamur, Virtutem incolumem edimus, sublatam oculis sero quaerimus inuidi.

AT LONDON, Printed by John Wirdet. 1586.

Enforce oh Lord In Zeale All Brests,
Effectually To Honor her:
who Ruling: Each man Gaines his right,
In Nought she showes A minde to erre.

TO THE RIGHT FA­MOVS AND MOST virtuous Princesse, Elizabeth by the grace of God, Queene of England, Fraunce, & Ireland, defendresse of the true Catho­lique faith, be constant perseuerance therein, a ioy­full raigne ouer vs, Gods protection from her foes, and after this life, a glorious raigne, with the King of Kinges.

SO small (right excellent & most vertuous Queen) is the talent of my lear­ning, that, notwithstan­ding, I haue not willing­lye conceiled it, it hath beene deseruedlye vnre­garded: which helde my willing minde, all amazed, at my first aduenture into this my truely affected purpose: Yet duely, and dutifully considering, that he that sayde vn­to Dauid, Aperi os tuum & implebo illud, was all sufficient to direct mee: and who sayde vnto Paule, Meafortitudo in imbecillitate perficitur, both could and would assist me, I founde no cause of doubt: but feeling further instigatiō, I proceded [Page] And, this (most gratious princesse) is the effect of my poore trauaile, which beeing thus simply performed, true affection mooued me and the daylie experience of your Maiesties clemencie, resolued mee, this daye (though trembling) to make it a messenger of my loyaltie: although in value, lesse then the poore widowes mite, and therefore farre vnaunswerable, to your princely worthinesse: yet in true zeale not inferiour to a most precious present. It may please your Ma­iesty, graciously to accept it (so were I happy) but through the weakenesse of my abilitie, I can not but reuerently acknowledge, that, might it bee accepted, at your princely handes, with bening patience, it is not in respect of my deseruinges, but proceeding onelye, and altogeather, of your Maiesties wonted clemencye. The experience whereof, hath engrauen in the heartes of your truely affected subiectes, suche a perfect print of free presumption, of your gratious acceptaunce, euen of a cup of colde water, flowinge from the fountaine, of their loyall obedience: that I no­thing dispayre of that, which your royall heart hath so generally afforded to many.

Among whome, although I bee the most vn­worthy, the causes mouing my willing minde, to wade hereinto (time and occasions considered) were not vnreasonable: tending (moste godly princesse) to the comfort of the little stocke of true Christians, that in these dangerous dayes, they yeeld not vnto the course, nor be dismayed [Page] at the threats of the multitude: a monster com­pact of many daungerous members, domesticall and foraine: protesting, that the rashe and pe­rilous resolution, which is to bee noted in the multitude in these dayes, without regarde of the truth, gaue greatest inforcement, to my tra­uaile: which (in respect that therein, the multi­tude may see their errour, and weaknesse) I haue intituled it, A mirror for the multitude, and in all humilitie sheilded the same, vnder the protec­tion of your Maiesty: a patronesse most pure and perfect: nothing doubting, but it may please th [...] great Sheepheard (euen in the time of your royal raigne) to gather all his children into one folde▪ and with the swoord of his truth, to driue away all beastes, and wolues, and all kinde of sauage creatures, as traitours, and such like cruell mon­sters, with their multitudes, and mightie adhe­rents, from touching as much as the hemme, of your Maiesties garment, to the indaungering of your royall person, being so armed, with the vn­doubted shield of faith in him, that first (beyond some expectation) placed your highnesse in the imperiall seat, who sheweth himselfe both al suf­ficient, mindfull, and willing, to protect you, and with the ballance of his iustice, to trye the light­nesse of some, that before they be duely peazed, seeme substantial, and trustie: Magna enim est ve­ritas & preualet: Euen the aduersaries of Gods truth, to the terrour of their owne consciences: and the truely affected, to the comfort of their [Page] hearts, consider the effect of grace, in your ma­iesties proceedinges, and that it is decreed by the highest Iudge, to vse your Maiesty, as his in­strument, to cut off the aspiringe heade, and to breake the greedy iawes of that fierce Holopher­nes of Rome: and to turne the swoordes of all his blouddy complices (bent againste your Ma­iesty, and al true Christians) into their owne bo­wels, That the remembrance of them may perish, with the sound of their own deserued shame, and their name be wyped away for euer and euer: No true Christian doubteth it. Manye are the vnfeyned prayers (most godly Queene) that not a few true Chri­stians, your faithful and obedient subiects, con­tinually make, for the preseruation of your ma­iesty, and confusion, or conuersion of these wic­ked men: that as they haue these twentye and eight yeares so (were it to Gods glory, and your comfort, as many quadrebled) they and their posteritie, maye vnder your sacred gouerne­ment, suck the sweet of the sauing truth, without feare of recaptiuitie in Romish Babylon.

Your maiesties faithfull and true­ly affected poore subiect, IOHN NORDEN.

To the Christian Reader greeting.

I Know (deare Christian Reader) that the mul­titude, chiefly in these daies, expecteth nouel­ties, things pleasing, fleshly fantasies, & espe­cially rare newes from beyonde the seas, mi­raculousThe multi­tude expec­tethnoueltie [...] The greatest wonder last­eth but nine daies. euents, and strange Stratagems, and wonders, from forrain countries, as also here at home: And yet we see the most strange wonder, to continue (as a won­der) but (as the old prouerbe saith) for nine daies, nay with some not nine howres. For who almost, hath not forgottē the generall earthquake, happening of so late yeares: nay,The late earthquak a great vvonder. who did not within nine daies, throw the consideratiō ther­of behind his back? Being so strange a motion, as the most antient of our daies, haue not felt the like: nor scarcely theirfore fathers. A thing (though now so cleane forgotten) yet of great moment, and weight, and of no small regard with the godly, who take it and accompt it (as indeed it was) a ve­ry Caueat vnto the obstinate, to become more conforma­bleThe earth­quak a ca­ueat. in their duties to God, least that he that then so shook, and caused the earth so to tremble at his presence, shewing but as it were the fiercenes of his countenance towards it, shoulde come downe and visite our iniquities with the plagues, which his iustice hath already prouided for the in­habitants thereof. For although we so slightly (in silence) passe ouer so ponderous a presagement of our punishment he that then shooke the earth, in loue, to call vs vnto him, can shake the inhabitants thereof, in peeces, and grind the rebellious to powder, euen with the breath of his mouth. For surely he that can shake the tree, euen to the rootes, he can much more disperse the leaues, and consume them to nought. Seeing I say (good reader) that our dulnes is such, & our hearts so besotted with the obliuion of any regard▪ of so high a matter, of so newe a thing, and so straunge an euent, I am vtterlye discomforted to present thee anye more newes, then within nine dayes, I may assure me, shall [Page] perish in the floud of forgetfulnesse. And on the otherThe stran­ged nevves soone forgotten. side, to write what hath beene already written, to present vnto thee, what hath beene or is already extant, I know it will be thought stale stuffe, and so a needles trauaile. So that [...]are is the trauaile in these dayes, that draweth not after it, some mislyke, of the authour be it new or old.

But such is my boldnesse, in the feare of God, and pre­mised obedience to my dreade Soueraigne, that I haue aduentured to present vnto thee, such things for thy lear­ning and comfort, as haue beene in the dayes of our fa­thers of old done, to shew the goodnesse of the Lorde, to those that trusted in him, and his vengeaunce and judge­mentes againste them, that were rebellious againste his truth, and that stood vpon their owne strength and mul­titude against the same: which (although I confesse hath been already written) yet to shew my selfe willing to do thee what good my poore tallent can extend vnto, I haue endeuoured to perfourme this little trauaile: the summe wherof is but to encourage thee to frame thine affection to the▪ truth of Gods worde, and not to bee dismaied at the threats of gods enimies, notwithstanding they seemeThe summe of this trauel vnuanquishable, in respect of their multitudes, and boast of their assuraunce of the truth, in respect of their manie heades. These are friuolous vauntes, whose fruites de­clare their profession pestilent, and their perswasions nothing els but to plucke men into the pit of wilfull re­bellion, against God, and conspiracie against his annoin­ted of the land. And that which I haue here collected, isThe fruits an a [...]g [...]m [...]nt of the professiō. nothing but the fruits of the tree of life, the sacred word of God, for thee to feed vpon, in these daungerous dayes: perswading my selfe that if thou be a true christian, thou w [...]lt more willingly accept it (though altogeather voyde of eloquence) thē that which the multitude couet, name­lyWhat the multitude most desire. that, which may encrease subtilty of wit, & make men more wonderfull amonge men, in respect of the curious conceited rules, of falshood and felowship, of Sophistry & such like, which as it is far from the intent of my trauaile, so I know thou wilt not expect it, as a thing necessary to staine the way to the true christian profession, or to moue [Page] willing zeale & zealous willingnes to perseuere therein.

I haue intitled it▪ A MIRROR FOR THE MVLTI­TVDE, for that as in a glasse all men may see and beholde the common course of the most parte, alienate from theGods chil­dren are the least number truth of Christian religion: And the lesser number to bee the true seruants of the liuing God. For notwithstanding the common censure of the worlde, doth rashly attribute greatest assurance, of hauing the truth, in respect of manyGods trueth contrary to the mindes of the multitud heads, and generall consents of countryes and kingdoms, and doe yeeld greatest likelihood of safty vnto the might of manye adherentes: It fareth not so with Gods eter­nal truth▪ which hee reuevleth vnto babes and sucklinges, and hideth it from the wise of the world, & who pluckethA flight of sathan. downe the mightie and proude, and exalteth the humble and meeke. And therefore is it a deceite of Sathan to al­lure men to consent vnto the multitude, to be sure of the truth, and to trust in the mightie showes of multitudes to be preserued from the foyle. It is not the horse that saueth a man in the battayle, but the mightie hand of God. God is not tyde to the force of man, but the puysaunce of theA daunge­rous thing to follow the multitude. mightiest multitude, vnder the power of the inuincible God. And therefore a daungerous thing to followe the multitude. For many are called, but fewe are chosen, ma­ny are inuited to the heauenly sweete banquet of the true knowledge, and exercise of the sincere religion of God,The way to true religion bodely dan­gerous. but fewe there bee that frame their willes, and powers to performe it in deede. And why? onely for that they finde the way thereunto, rough, burdensome, and bodily dan­gerous, and therefore start aside like broken bowes, and retire like dastardly souldiers, and attain not vnto the end of the race that leadeth vnto life, but take the broad, plea­sant and easie way, that trayneth vnto errors & feyned ho­linesse, & consequently vnto death. It is a painefull, hard, and tedious thing to fleshe and bloud, to forsake worldlyThe flesh is weake and vnable to a­bide mortifi­cation. vanities, and pleasing thinges of the worlde, to followe Christ, for that in flesh there is no goodnesse, pronenesse or readinesse to do well, to denie and suppresse our owne naturall affections, and as it were to kill our owne selues in true mortification, to the ende the more freely to im­brace [Page] the crosse of Christ, and to liue to him in singlenesse and purenesse of heart. The Apostle sayth for thy sake areRo. 8. 36. we killed all the daye long, agreeing with the wordes of the Prophet, who likewise sayth, that for the loue and du­tifullPsal. 44. 22. affection the godly bare vnto God, for his sake, they are slaine contitually: namely suffer the wicked to rageThe godly are for gods sake killed continuallye against them, to rayle at them, to persecute them, and punish them: wherein, being led by the spirite of God in perfect holinesse, they take it not onely patiently, but to their vnspeakeable cōfort, for that they are thought wor­thy to suffer such reproch, for the testimonie of their true and verie Christian profession, when they are carried asThe comfort of Christians in their cros­ses. sheepe to the slaughter, for their faith in Christ, and not as wicked doers, traytors, rebels, murtherers, & bloud thirsty men, for Blessed are they that suffer persecution for righteous­nesse sake, for theirs is the kingdome of heauen. But if any manMat. 5. 10. 1. Pet. 4. 15. Wee muste regarde the cause of our sufferings. suffer as a murtherer, or an euill doer, or as a busie bodie in other mens matters, he hath no portion with thē. And yet such is the blindnes of our late conspirators, that they are perswaded their rebellions, their treasons, murthers, and all their bloudie practises, not onely lawfull, but me­ritorious, only by the dispensation which they haue, from the vicegerent of Satan, who presumeth to make the word of God in this behalfe (namely that no murtherer or wicked person shall enter into the kingdome of heauen) of none effect, and not only tollerateth murther & other the most intol­lerable euils, but warranteth the actors thereof, not onlyThe miscon­ceit of euill doers. Romish dis­pensations cause of ma­ny euils pardon, but great rewarde for murthering the most godly vpon the earth, yea & whē for these wicked pretended pra­ctises, they come by due proofe, & course of lawes, vnto the gallowes, as wicked doers, such is the blasphemous boldnes of the man of Rome, that he blusheth not to ca­nonize them Saints, when the scripture the very worde of truth, condēneth, as very reprobate. Iudas killed not Christ,The canoni­zation of Iudas. although he were the mean to encourage the Iewes to lay handes vpon him, yet such was the guilt of his conscience, that after the fact, he ranne desperate & hung himself, here was the canonizing of a man as holy as these, that now cō ­spire the death of her Maiestie, her Counsaile, and Magi­strates, [Page] the spoyle of the lande, & the vtter exterpation of the glory of God, & merites of his Christ, some of whom as we see in a guilty conscience, haue canonized thē selues after the maner of Iudas, & the most proudest of thē (yea) hee that carrieth the most resolute minde (had they their desire, which God forbid) would runne with Iudas & Cayn desperate, for so rashly betraying the innocent bloud.

And howsoeuer these foolish and more then mad mini­sters of the Romish confederacy, flatter themselues, who haue vowed the ouerthrow of the true religiō of Christ byThe vain hope of tray­tors. taking away the chiefest props thereof, in hope (for their rewarde) some to sit at the right, some at the left hande of Christ in his kingdome, as the false father of all the faith­lesse, the proude Pope, hath flatteringly perswaded thē: let thē assure thēselues, that if the word of God be true, then shall not such as suffer for euill dooing, nor such as haue their consciences feared with the hot iron of consent vnto such like conspiracies, enter into the kingdom of heauen, nor haue their portion in the presence of Christ, neither sit at his right or left hand, in his kingdome: no, they shal not haue the priueledge of enioying the light of his coū ­tenance, the bright beams of his glory shal not extend to­wardes them, to their comfort in the laste day, but meereTheir assured revvard that seeke the o­uerthrowe of the godly. horror, anguish, torment, and the worme, which is the te­stimonie of their guilty cōsciences, shalbe their portion to drink for euermore, and the great deceyuer himselfe whō Sathan hath deceyued, shall haue his hire with them in vt­ter darkenes, where shalbe weeping & gnashing of teeth.

And therfore (good Reader) take heed that the sufferingsWee muste take heed of the causes of sufferings. The causes of the suffe­rings of the wicked. of these mē deceiue thee not, for marke the cause of their sufferinges, whether it be for the testimony of a good cō ­science or no. Thou hast heard, that he that suffereth for euill doing, as for murther & such like, can challenge no benefit of the promise, made to such as suffer for righte­ousnesse sake. Thou art not ignoraunt of their practises, thou art (no doubt) resolued of their profession, to be ac­companied with treasons, rebellions, tumults, cōspiracies, practises of farrain inuasions, for the ouerthrow of thee & all true Christians, for which, they suffer as they deserue▪ [Page] and the cloake of good intent, can not hide their heartes fraught with manifest desire of the bloud of Christians, from the throne of him, to whom the innocent handes of many Christians are lifted vppe, for a testimonie of theirThe zeale of the godly. sounde profession, and to showe themselues not onely guyltlesse of such wickednesse, but zealous of the refor­mation or confusion of such blodthirstie men. Iust vp thy handes with a cleare conscience therefore, with the truelyOur duties remembred. godly, and craue the assistaunce of him that neuer fayleth the faithful, that he will continue the defence of our Soue­raigne, the stay and guyde of our Magistrates, the prote­ction of our lande, and a seuere Iudge of those that seeke by these wicked deuises to confounde him (if it were pos­sible) in his members, that for his sake are killed all the day long. And if thou suffer, suffer as a Christian, name­lyHovv vve ought to suffer. as a faithfull member of Christe, taking the narrowe waye to life, with such as neuer desired other canonizati­on then the merites of their master and heade Christ Ie­sus,How the righteous desire to bee canonised. whom whosoeuer desireth to imitate, and be perta­ker of the ioyes prouided for his very Saintes, must bee likewise pertaker of his crosse, for his sake in this life: for farre better it is by labour to obtaine rest, by tribulation to winne ioy, and by death to procure life, then by rest to come to labour, by ioy to purchase tribulation, and by a pleasaunt and lou [...]e life to procure death, and eternall destruction, for this is certaine and nothing more certain,Life or death in the last day eternall. that what commeth last bee it life or death, it is eternall and for euer to endure.

Shall therefore persecution, and threates of bloudie tyrantes, keepe vs backe or dismaye vs from that profes­sion, which leadeth vs vnto life? or shall the daungerous deuises of the ministers of Sathan draw vs agayne into the palpable darkenesse that leadeth vnto death? God forbid.

What should then mooue vs to feare the force of theA good ad­monition. manie and mightie fauourers of the stronge deceyuing whore of Babylon? Shall the infirmitie & weakenes of our flesh and bloud, accompanied with so many sharp bicker­inges of temptations, and such vneasinesse of the narrowe way, that we must walke in, we being fewe and so vnlike [Page] to withstande the encounter of our manie enemies? No surely, for God by whome we liue, and in whom we trust,God is our staffe and strength, hee vvill defend vs. hath promised to stande by vs, to helpe vs, and to sende his spirite to strengthen vs, who being alwayes neere vnto his, will ayde vs, being omnipotent will assist vs, and not suffer his vaunting proude aduersaries, that imagine such mischiefe against his people, to take effect in their deuises.Psal. 2. 2. Although the Kinges of the earth, stande vp, and the Prin­cesThe kings of the earth not to be feared it they go a­bout to resist the truth. assemble themselues together against the Lord, and a­gainst his annoynted: although they increase mightily that [...]eeke to violate the sanctuarie of the Lord, and great multitudes rise vp against his word, vtterly to supplant it, and roote it out, let God deale with them according toPsal. 3. 1. his diuine wisedome, and in the end we shall see those that nowe take these wicked counsailes, laying their heades to­gether, imagining howe and by what meanes they may banish the godly of from the earth, to melt away as wax atThe end of the wicked. the fire, (yea) they shall consume in the imaginations of their owne heartes, and perish in their owne wilinesse, he hath spoken it, that for euer hath and will confirme it: hee hath sayde it, that will for euermore performe it.

And therfore although Sathan haue sounded his trum­pets, and beaten vp his drumbes of Alarum rounde about vs, to allure forraine inuasions, preparations to ciuill tu­multesSathan hath sounded vp his trumpets of alarum to inuade christians in the behalf of Antichrist. Christ is a carefull vvatchman. The benefit of Gods pro­tection. & vprores, practises of secrete conspiracies, among our selues, that the red dragon of Rome, may the more freely reestablish his kingdome of darkenesse: we see and to our vndoubted comfort we may note the diligent eye, and carefull diligence of our watchman Christ, who hath brought all their deuises to light, So that we may say, had not the Lorde garded her Maiestie, defended our Nobles, watched our Cities, and protected our whole Realme, she had beene deuoured, her Magistrates massacred, our Ci­ties ransacked, and our Realme and common quiet come to vtter ruyne & subuertion, and the Lordes honour laide in the dust. Thus may we little Israell of Englande laye▪ The snare is broken and we deliuered. If the Lorde had not beene on our side when men rose vp against vs, they had swallowed vs vp quicke, and yet is the snare broken and we deliuered, immortall prayses be vnto [Page] his blessed name therefore.

The trumpet hath giuen our enemies (the enemies of gods truth) an vncertaine sounde, they were readie to bat­taile, but (God be thanked) they are returned to their own shame.

And notwithstanding (as these late conspirators haue cō ­fessed) the King of Spaine, hath vowed the consummationThe raske vovve of the king of spaine. of halfe his kingdome, but he will winne little Englande to subiection, vnto the vsurped authoritie of the whore of Babylon, who doubteth but he may spende all, & spoile his owne soule (vnlesse he conuert▪) and yet he that hath hi­therto garded vs, is for euer sure? And as he frō high be­holdeth the litle, yea, the least worm in the earth, so doubt­lesse he winketh not at the vaine vauntes of this mightie king, & his wilful permittance, of his most wicked inqui­sition,The permit­tance of the spanish in­quisition most vvicked A good remedy for the clensing of a man from self morti­fication whereby many godly mēbers of Christ are cruelly martyred, to fulfill the most damnable wil of that man of Rome, the red deuouring dragon. But before the blind & bloudy expectatiō, of this rash conceited king be fulfilled, no doubt but our gratious Soueraigne shal (at the pleasure of our good God) liue to heare of his vl [...]imum vale, or cer­taine cōuersion, in washing himselfe in the bloud of the lambe, the merites of Christ, from the pitch of the poy­son of Romish affection, wherewith he is nowe so defiled, that the sauour thereof, hath infected many, and marti­red not a fewe.

How many haue there bin martyred in Spaine, massacred in Fraunce, spoyled in Portingall, slaine in Flaunders, endan­gered in England, and many other countries & kingdoms, as in Naples, Italy, Florence, Ferrar [...], Mantua, Myllayne, Ger­many, Denmarke, and many other, where the poyson of ty­ranny hath beene sprinckled abroade, to please the Popes high holines, to feede his hellish humour, & to fil his bel­ly with the bloud of the Saints of God, that in these places haue like cōstant christians, denied his vsurped, & more thē The booke of martyrs▪ [...] glasse of romish cruel­ty. blasphemous authoritie. Meruelous is the mirror of our time, & specially the volume of Martyrs who haue suffered for the testimony of the truth of the Gospell, wherein may be seene, that it is no newe thing that these men so egerly [Page] thirst for the bloud of the godly, in euery kingdom, coun­try, prouince, Citie and congregation, not only from the killing of godly Abell, to the beheading of Iohn Baptist, but during the raignes of all the tyrannous Emperors of Rome, and since continued by succession all the time of all the blouddy ministers of the red Dragon, the Popes of Rome, who seeke by all meanes to deuour the childe, the Gospell of Christ, wherewith the true Catholique church trauaileth, as a woman to be deliuered, namelie to haue it spread through al the world, which the Pope, the man ofThe cause why the pope and his disciples now storme. sinne, the father of deceipt, and dispensor of murther, see­keth euen now to stop and preuent, least the general true knowledge therof, should so manifest his wickednes, blas­phemy, and rebellion against Christ, that the worlde see­ing his falshood, should fall from him and be saued. And that (good Reader) is the cause that he is now so busie & seeketh by all meanes he can to bring that to passe, which God for his mercies sake, neuer permit. But thus euerye good Christian must resolue himself, that during the timeA christian resolution. of our pilgrimage here in this life, these wicked ministers of bloudy Antichrist, shall not cease to persecute him▪ & by all means seeke, to suppresse the true seruants & extinguish the true seruice of the liuing god, for that therin standeth the saluation of euery faithfull in Christ. And therefore whatsoeuer stormes & tempestes, tumultes, vprores, con­spiracies, rebellions and such like buffits of Sathan, rum­bleVVe muste bewarre of starting backe. about our eares, we may not start backe frō our pro­fession, we may not be faint hearted, to fall from our faith to feyned holinesse, notwithstanding threates of inuasi­ons, sacking of our Cities, cutting of our throts and mur­thering of our bodyes. For beholde although it shoulde please our heauenly father to giue vs ouer vnto the hands of his and our enemies, and they to take their willes against vs, they haue power but only ouer our bodyes and not ouer our soules, which shall rest in the bosome, namelye, in the safe custodie of our Sauiour Iesus Christ vnder the alter, indewed with the longe white Robe [...] of innocencie washed in the bloude of the immacu­late Lambe. Whereas if wee (for feare of the losse of [Page] our goods, fauour of our f [...]endes, or liues) ioyne with these men, to be pe [...]take [...]s of their bloudie practises a­gainst the godly: then shall we be likewise of the num­ber of those, against whome they that nowe he vnder the Alte [...] Christ, crye for vengeaunce for the tyrannie done against the iust, that waded thorough the pikes of persecu­tions. Wee must therefore beware of giuing anye con­sent vnto their practises, and rather yeeld our owne neckes vnto the yoke of their tyrannies, th [...]: when the numberThe ende of the godly. of Gods elect is fulfilled, and the Lo [...]de appearing in glo­rie, we also with him, may be pe [...]taker of the same glorie, when wee shall no more hunger nor thirst, but be in the continuall presence of the throne of our Sauiour Christe, and serue in his temple day and night, that he that sitteth in the throne may dwell amongest vs, and wee with him, for euermore: so that for the ioy of his presence we shall no more mourne nor weepe, but all teares beeing wyped from our faces, wee shall continue in singing the ioyfull song of prayse vnto his name that sitteth in the throne, for his most louing protecting vs in our corporall life, in such constant perseuerance in his truth, (among the bitter per­secutions of the wicked, that then shall haue their porti­ons in vtter darkenesse, where shall be weeping and gna­shing of teeth) that in his merites are thought woorthy ofThe end of the wicked persecutors. that blessed life, whereunto he that will attaine, must wil­lingly accept of such crosse, as his master by his diuine pro­uidence thinketh meete, and expedient to be layde vppon him, which (in what maner [...]oeuer [...]t pleaseth him to deale with vs) vouchsase thy zealous prayer, that all true Christi­ans may patiently suffer.

And to conclude, why shoulde wee feare the force, theThe conclu­sion. threates, and great bragges of these men, seeing we haue the Lorde himselfe to be our King? Let the multitude of Pharaohs hoast and the mightie companie of Senacherybes Armye fiet as they will, let them champe and chafe like wildes boares, yea although the whole earth shake and all the foundations thereof tremble & quake▪ as of late it hath done, let vs not be dismayde, but goe on, in loue to feare, and in faith to loue him that hath promised to be with vs, [Page] euen he that dwelleth in the Cherubyns: who hath suffici­ently declared his power in Sion, wherunto all these proud boasting, murtherous, and bloudthirstie men (nill they will they) shal be for euermore subiect, and shal not passeThe wicked are tyed within the limits of gods povver those lymits, to touch her highnesse, her crowne and dig­nitie▪ her Magistrats, and common weal, which he hath al­readie determined for our good: and therefore neede we the lesse to feare, what they can doe vnto vs: but rather let vs trust vpon the assured protection, of our mightie and most mercifull God, and magnifie his name, most terri­ble to his enemies: It is holy, they corrupt, all honor is due vnto it, and eternall plagues are due to them. Where­fore I say, we neede not to seeke any succour besides him, who (no doubt) will sharply punish all those rebellious multitudes, of whom and by whose meanes, we are vniust­ly endaungered. For it can not be (good Reader) that heGod vvil not suffer the vvicked to go vnauen­ged. should suffer such outrage, treasons, conspiracies, and wic­kednes vnauenged, that is the author of equitie and iu­stice it selfe, and hath prescribed vnto the posteritie of Ia­cob, the very rule therof, which we must carefully imbrace and followe, not onely in outwarde showe, but in the in­wardeOur dutiesto God. soule. And seeing we see the goodnes of our God, so farre extended to our continuall comfort: let vs prayse him, let vs in holinesse and righteousnesse, fall downe be­fore his footestoole, and truely worship him, for he is on­ly1. Tim. 2. 1. holy: And as S. Paul exhorteth let supplications, pray­ers, intercessions, and giuing of thankes for all our bre­thren, as well here at home, as in other Countries, suffe­ring violence for the testimonie of their good conscien­ces to God: And especially let vs praye for our most gra­tious Soueraigne, that God of his goodnes will preserueher, and protect her in his power, from the bloudie sword which Gods assured enemies, haue whetted to take away her most innocent life, her Counsaile, and Magistrates be­ingThe sterne of our common vveale. vnder her the sterne of our peaceable gouernement: let vs duly regard in our prayers, for this is good and ac­ceptable in the sight of God our Sauiour. And as the Lord consecrated Moses and Aaron of olde, and set Samuel also amongest them, to exercise the office of the Mediator for [Page] the people, and whylest they executed the same sincerely, they were heard, and the Lorde spake vnto them out of the cloudy piller▪ prescribing vnto them the way and rites of his diuine worship: So let euerie Moses and Aaron, to­getherEuery man must execut his dutie. with Samuel, the priest and the Prophet, the king and the people, execute their duties vnto the same God in true worshippe, in supplications, praiers, intercessions, and giuing of thankes one for another, as the carefull members of one body in our head Christ, in whom who so followeth the good example of Moses and Aaron, shall assuredly be likewise duly heard, and in conuenient time releeued. For the Lorde many times vouchsasing his eare vnto them▪ suffered himselfe oftentimes to be pacified, by their faithfull prayers. Seeing then that we haue a Medi­atour, euen Christ Iesus, to present our prayers vnto God, and to reconcile vs to God▪ let vs not be slack in our prai­ers, nor weake in our faith, but constantly beleeue that as he hath hetherunto protected vs, so he will continue our defence for euermore.

Thine in Christian goodwill, I. Norden.


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A MIRROR FOR the Multitude.
CHAP. 1.

A Comfortable discourse to perseuere in the trueth, notwithstanding persecution, with a dehortation from ioyning with the multitude in conspiracye a­gainst the same.

ALTHOVGH it is, by the2. Tim. 3. 1. 1. Tim. 4. 1. Prouidence of Almightye God, our lotte to fall into these daungerous times, & troublesome dayes, fore­told so long agoe: wherein we see, and heare the maine and seuere thunderclapps of bitter persecution, to rage and rattle in diuers corners of the earth: And especially, where the glory of God is mostPersecution is there most sharp where the worde of God is follo­vved moste sincerely. sought for, his trueth most imbraced, and the darknesse of errour moste reiected. Let vs bee of good comfort, let vs arme our selues with a full assurance of our happy estate in resisting errors and the pleasing thinges of this world, with the [Page 2] force of Christianlike patience in a cleare consci­ence, wherein also let vs take hold of that assured trueth, which God by Christ hath to our cōfort,Queene Eli­ [...]abeth an in­strument vn­der whome God hath re­ched vs his truth. by his instrumēt our most gratious Queene, as with his outstretched arme reached & restored most louingly vnto vs again, beeing taken away by her sister Quene Mary. Let vs therfore like va­liaunt souldiers, vnder the bāner of a most victo­rious and wise captaine, let vs march-on as we haue begunne, nay (if it be possible) more vali­auntly, more willingly, and more circumspect­ly, through the brunt of al contemptible things, namelie, through the darcksome night of igno­rance vnto the day-light of the sincere truth, not fearing the force of the pikes of whatsoeuer per­secution threatned, whatsoeuer pollicy or pra­ctise pretended.

And for our defence lette vs take holde of the sweete promises and promised swetnesse of our heade and assured reste Christe Iesus, who is our guide and captaine, vnder whose en­signe we must fight, without feare of bodilie af­fliction,VVee muste follow Christ in accepting his crosse. for we must followe him in patient ac­ceptance of his crosse for the truths sake, as hee himselfe hath trayned the way. He is the louing husband of his obedient spouse the Churche, wherof whosoeuer accompteth himself a mem­ber must thinke himself happy, if he be thought worthy to suffer like affliction with him. For heeThe seruante is not aboue his maister. hath allowed none that are his indeede, any far­ther prerogatiue of quiet and liking daies, in this [Page 4] naturall body, then he himself was forced to a­bid in the pilgrimage of this life. And for that he would not haue his little flock discouraged, when the stormy blastes of persecution should beat against the walls of their weake nature: as though some straunge thing did happen, heeThe children of God must not look for a pleasant life in this vvorlde. gaue them forewarning, and (as it were) a caue­at, that they should not looke for a pleasant life in this world, for euery one that will liue godlie in Christ Iesus shall suffer persecution: And by many tribulations they must enter into the king2. Tim. 3. 1 [...] dome of heauen.

It is euident, that the truth in Christ, namely the trueth which hee taught, is the way that lea­deth vnto the kingdome of heauen, which truth also neuer passeth without some buffets of Sa­thanThey that professe the truth are busseted of Sathan. and his ministers. And why? onlie because it is the ouerthrow of his kingdome of darknes. And therefore whatsoeuer he bee that seeketh & endeuoreth to set forth the glory of God, and the misteries of his Christ, whether by preaching or by whatsoeuer other christianlike exercise, muste arme himselfe against the assaultes of thisSathan the archenemy of the church of Christ. wonted and Archenemy of the church of Christ who in the beginning, seeing our first parentes in a blessed estate, & in a sincere & godly course of life, hee neuer lefte by pernicious practises vntill hee had pluckt thē from their obedi­ence to their maker, into wilfull rebellion and sinne, and consequentlye vnto deathe. And hath not since in anye age, ceased to seeke the [Page 4] meanes to preuent the passage of the truth, andSathan see­keth to pre­uent the sal­uation of mā. to hinder as much as in him lyeth the saluation of all men. He raysed vp wicked Cain to laye vio­lent handes vppon godly Abell, and to shed his innocent bloud, onely because he saw that Abell began to serue God aright.

When Ioshna the high preist prayed vnto the Lorde for the prosperity of the Church, SathanZachary. 3. 1 Sathan stood at the elbovv of Iosua vvhen he prayed. stoode at his elbowe to resist him: and of a sure­ty, so endeuoreth to resist euery action, euery enterprise and motion, tending to the setting forth of the glorye of God, and the saluation of our soules.

He raysed vp wicked Saul to persecute godlyeSaul persecuted Dauid. Dauid, Herod to seeke the death of Christ, and his many ministers, euen mighty multituds, to persecute his Apostles. We may read how he in­cited vngodly Iesabell to seeke the death of Eliah: and to conclude, hath neuer omitted tyme andIesabell. meanes to persecute as many as haue professed the truth, such is his malice towards the church of God. And for that the church of Christ is so subiect to the stormy tempests of Sathans perse­cutions, and euery godly action so encountredMat. 8. 26. The churche of God is compared to a ship tossed vpon the sea. and kept back with the blusterous blasts of his buffets: It is rightly resembled vnto a ship, that is beaten, battered, and continually subiecte to the rough and boyling waues of the raging Sea. But herein is our comfort, that when the grea­test tempestes and stormes doe arise, when wee seeme to be in most perill, and likely to be ouer­whelmed [Page 5] with the belowes & fomy flashings of affliction, and when we think that our heauenly father is a sleepe and regardeth not our troubles our daungers, or present and imminent perills, he suddenly ariseth and rebuketh the windes, and chaungeth the stormes into calme weather, our despaire of helpe, into a manifest token of our certaine safetie. And as in respect of the tro­bles incident vnto the professors of the trueth, their estate is resembled vnto a ship tossed in the sea: Euen so let vs further consider, that as the ship that is greeuously tossed, and the mariners and passengers, that thereby are most perilously endaungered, haue then the greatest care, and take circumspectest heede, that they runne not against the rocks, nor be driuen into any gulph:Deliuery frō deepest dan­ger procu­reth greatest ioye. and if they safely ariue vnto their expected har­bour, their ioy is then the more great & glade­some, by howe much they were in desperate pe­rill. Euen so the poore soules that are most cru­elly handled, and the bark of their fraile fleshe most sharply tossed and driuen to and fro with the force of bitter persecution, for the testimo­ny of the truth: their care and diligence to keep the euen and direct course, is thē most regarded & they carry then an eye vnto their course, least the wind of these troubles shoulde driue them v­pon the rockes of error. And when they shall safely, namely truely & constantly ariue at their wished harbour, namely of the passage from this mortall life, vnto the immortal hauen, whether [Page 6] it be by Martirdome or by any other kind of de­termination of their course, their ioyes shall bee so much the greater, by how much their afflicti­ons and persecutions haue bene for the testimony of their godly professions with constancy & due pacience tollerated & accepted: for blessed are they that suffer persecution for righteousnes sake, for theirs is the kingdome of heauen. ThisMat. 5. 10. thē is our sufficient warrant, patiently to acceptThe hope of the kingdom of God a [...] ­meth vs to [...]e [...]e perse­cution. of Sathans buffets, knowing that the grace of God shal hold vs vp, and preserue vs from con­fusion. And therefore although through perse­cution and crosses, wee be thought contempti­ble in this world, and through the slaunders & reproches of the wicked, we be thought and ac­compted abiects in the worlde, let vs perswade our selues that all the persecutions, afflictions, troubles, cares, calamities, scornings, scoffings, scurgings, and crosses which wee can beare in this life, are not worthy of the ioy of the life to come. Yet may we fully resolue our selues, that as a sparrowe lighteth not on the ground with­out the prouidence of God: no more doeth the least of these afflictions light vppon vs without our heauenly fathers will for our saluation. And therefore wee may not think it straunge, when this firy tryall of persecution commeth, but ra­ther1. Pet. 4. 12. They that truly suffer shall appeare vvith Christ in glory. to reioice▪ in somuch as we be thereby made pertakers of Christ our dear maisters sufferings: For when his glory shall appeare, wee with him shall appeare in glory.

[Page 7]But why shoulde God permit his children toA friuolous question. be so hardly dealt withall by the wicked? Why doth Christ suffer his sheepe thus guiltlesse to be slaine: and his spouse (the church) to be so perse­cuted & afflicted? for that shepheard that hath speciall regard vnto his flocke, will not suffer thē to be so hunted and vexed by the tiranny of ra­uening wolues. Neither will that father that lo­ueth his children see them abused, and ill dealt withall by any, but will with speed show himself a carefull father, and the shepheard a watchfull shepheard vnto his flocke. Euen so naturall rea­son would seeme to controll Christ, in that hee wincketh at the wicked when with open mouths they run vpon the godly as though they woulde swallow them, and deuoure them vp quick: but should rather presently take their cause in hand, and reuenge himself of such as defile his sanctua­ry.VVherein our comforte standeth in persecution. Reu. 6. 7. But Christ to resolue our weaknesse, and to confirme a farther hope in vs touching his good pleasure herein, saith, that it muste bee so vntill the number of the faithfull bee fulfilled, that the wicked shall persecute the godly, as who shouldIo. 16. 2. 3 say: I do allowe that my children shall taste of the whippes of the vngodly, and by them to bee cast out of their Sinagogue, to be excōmunicated and put to death, and why? For my names sake (saith hee.) And in that they thus afflicte them, they shal think they do god good seruice, namly in that they knowe neither God the Father, nei­ther Christ: whereby we see, that none that tru­lie [Page 8] know God, or seeke his glory, will moue as much as their hands, or tongues against any of his seruaunts: much lesse against his annointedThey that knovve not Christ perse­cute his members. against lawfully established kings, princes, and magistrates, which couet to maintaine the set­ting foorth of his truth, and exalting his name. Then to conclude: what may wee holde them that seeke the murthering of Christs annointed, namely our Queene and gouernesse, and suche like defenders of his true religion. May wee not say they be such as know not God, such as seeke nothing but how to crucifie Christ in his mem­bers? Nabuchadnezar, not knowing God, neitherDan. 3. 1. being acquainted with his trueth, did euen the like in persecuting the three children. So did those that cried out crucify Christ, crucify Christ and such as longed for the bloud of his Apo­stles: and finally all such as haue of late dayes martyred, or caused so many godly ones to bee burned, and otherwise done to death, for the te­stimony of their maister Christ: as in the tymeIgnorance of the trueth mother of persecution. of Queene Mary in England, now in France, & Spaine, and in other countreyes where the truth of Gods word, is turned into mens owne inuen­tions, Dioclesian, Maximinian, Maximius, Maxen­tius, Tirannous emperors not knovv­ing God. & such like tirannous Emperors, not know, ing God, persecuted the children of God, whose endes were miserable.

What thing can there bee more lamentable, then the want of the knowledge of GOD and Christ? whereby men flye vnto all kinde of euill [Page 9] deuises, without remorce of conscience, euen as blinde horses runne into the dyke of their owne destruction, contempning the trueth, and imbracing falsehood, making warre with christ and christians, putting their confidence in Pha­roas strength and multitudes, the broken reede of Aegipt, whereby they endeuor to pul downe such as GOD hath exalted, and to exalt those whome Gods worde pulleth downe, to root vp that which God hath planted, and to plant that which the trueth of God rooteth vp: to con­demne those whome God vouchsafeth to saue,The Papistes absurdities. and to saue those that the iudgement of God condemneth. This wee daily see commeth to passe through want of knowledge of the worde of God, which yet the most parte perceiue not, the multitude consider not, neither do they de­sire to knowe it. But the time will come, when their owne consciences, wherein they are nowe nothing touched, shalbe as a thousand witnesses against them, yea as a booke laide open before them, wherein they shall see, that they haue ta­kenThe consci­ence as a booke laide open. foolish enterprises in hande for want of the wisdome of God: and shall then acknowledge that they whome they accounted heretickes, & whome they accounted vile and contemptible, whome they persecuted and put to death for ac­knowledging that which they accounted false & erroneous, were the true seruaunts of the high God: the sheepe of the heauenly shepheard: the church immaculate of the true God, and the o­bedient [Page 10] spouse of their beloued Christ: And thē selues to be ledd and wilfullye caried awaye with the vaine traditions of mortall men, when they shall sing, Woe and well away all too late. The iudgement of the Lord lyeth heauy vpon them, the truth inuiolable, hath already condempned them, and their wicked deuises, their traiterous practises, and mischeeuous enterprises, are suf­ficientThe practises of the papists sufficient te­stimony of their condē ­nation. testimonies and tokens of their vtter cō ­demnation. Do not these their manifest and o­pen practises manifest vnto vs men, the corrup­tion of their consciences to God? And that they are the ministers of Sathan, sent to buffit not onely Paule, & such as preach & teach the word of God truly: but euen the general company of the church, & especially the head thereof heere in England, our moste gratious and godlye Queene, yea they cease not to wheat their swords to sharpen their weapons, to deuoure all the godly vpō earth. But behold it is Christ himself whō they persecut, it is he whom they resist, it is he whom they despise, it is he against whom they rise and assemble themselues together, and it is he whom they seeke to crucify againe in his mē ­bers. But they wil say, no, they persecute not Christ, they seeke not to crucify him againe: but they seeke the bloud of such as agree not to their inuentions: they thinke that they themselues (knowing not God) doe not stretch forth their handes to the spoile of the saincts, and that their tiranny reacheth not vnto Christ. But alasse, [Page 11] they are farre deceiued: Paule thought the likePauls perse­cution be­fore his con­uersion. before his conuersion, who persecuted with might and maine, the Christian congregations, when he (being voide of the true knowledge of God) with much cruelty thirsted after the bloud of many innocents, as he traueled towards Da­mascus,Act. 9. 4. with authority from the highpreist (as these men now pretend to haue from the highe Byshop) to persecute the christians, the mighty power of God strake him to the earthe, and the Lord spake vnto him saying, Saul, Saul, why per­secutest thou mee? he said not, why persecutest thou my Saincts? why seekest thou thus to vexe mortall men, but plainly said: why persecutestPauls con­uersion. thou mee? which proueth, that although christ be in heauen, who is the head, his church which are his members here militant in earth, is moste deare vnto him, and hee that toucheth them, toucheth him, yea they are as tender vnto him, as the apple of his eye. Yea such a vnion is there betwene him and his children the saincts, name­ly the godly in earth, that he with a general term nameth them himselfe, and maketh no excepti­onChrist and his church all one. betweene them and himselfe. Wherefore it is a perillous thing to attempt or enterprise the least motion of euill that may bee done against the least of them: much more to be auoyded to practise these inhumane, and brutish, yea more then heathenish attempts against the chief mē ­bers thereof, as of late hath bene attempted. Bewarre, bewarre therfore al ye that haue bene [Page 12] defiled with this pitch, wash your selues agayne in the blood of the Lambe and bee clensed, and cry out and make it knowne by an earnest con­fession,A good salue for a consci­ence guiltie of [...]auoring traytors. and say we haue sinned, we haue sinned in seeking to betray the innocent bloud.

Seeing now (deare christian brethren) that it hath pleased our gracious God in his sonne: to vouchsafe vs so comfortable and happy a lotte as to be accepted as his deare children: And for the further confirmation of our hope in his bloud, the price of our redemption, to make vs pertakers of his crosses: Let vs assure our selues, that these daungerous attemptes of the wicked are stirred vp by the meanes of Sathan, permit­ted by God for our good. Namely lest that wee slumbering in a secure estate, accompanied withA singuler benefit of God. no daungers, shoulde fall into forgetfulnesse of our duties to him, who hath not onely reueiled to vs his truth, but aforded vs long tranquillity and the benefit of a peaceable time, to enioye & exercise the same. For there is no mortall man, can so duely addresse himselfe to the discharge of his duty to God, to way the goodnesse of godS [...]rity dan g [...]rous. the performance of his promises and hope of his protection, so effectually, so duly, thankfully and carefully in the time of the tranquillity of bodye, and quiet estate of all thinges, as in the time of affliction in the time of perills & daun­gers, yea when Sathan beginneth to raise his for­ces, and buffets against vs. As appeareth by P. feeling this combate of Sathan, striuing & lay­ing [Page 13] siege and battery vnto his soule, then repai­redPau [...]e repai­red to God, vvhen Sathan assaulted him. and betoke himselfe vnder the banner of his captaine Christ, and prayed his aide and help to resist him who is alwayes readye, if we rightlye seeke him, and sincerely serue him. And for the increase of our comfort and constant pacience in the bitter assaultes of Sathan incident vnto our profession, and that we shoulde not yeelde nor be discomforted or dismayed, he willeth vs by the answere which hee gaue vnto Paule, when he prayed that the buffets of sathan might bee taken from him, and cease in him: to assure vs of helpe, he saide, that his grace is sufficient for vs.

This no doubt was written for our learning, for our comfort, & although spoken to Paule to assure him, so to vs and for vs, to assure vs of Gods defence and protection in al our troubles if in like sorte wee holde our selues, by the same grace that alwayes offereth it selfe vnto vs, whē ­soeuer wee bee persecuted, whensoeuer wee bee blamed of the worlde, or whensoeuer Sa­than by any meanes seeketh to buffet vs or dis­courage vs, for the testimony of an vpright and sound conscience.

For what is the cause, that they which liue godly, they which professe the truth of god boldly, they which take Gods true religion in hande effectually, and seeke to maintaine the same pe­rish to manifest it openly, to sowe and disperse it generally, and to acknowledge Christ constant­ly. [Page 14] are misliked of the multitude, condempned, sclaundered, reproued, rayled at, reuiled, im­prisoned, hated, afflicted persecuted and cruellyTrust in God is the cause that the vvorld ha­te th vs. martyred? Is it not beecause they truste and beeleeue in the liuing GOD? bee­cause they repose their cheefeste and sole con­fidence in the mighty God of hoastes? and doe disclaime the manners, the conuersation, the profession, and vaine deuises of the multitude, who collour their actions, and paint their pra­ctises, with counterfait holinesse, giuing all the causes of their conspiracies, of their tirannous treasons, treacheries and bloudsheds, the gloseConspiracye and treasons ha [...] alvvais the gloose of good intēt of the loue in religion: when indeede the word of God, reproueth, forbiddeth, condemneth & punisheth these wicked practises and practisers: altogether disallowing the courses of their coū ­sells, the prooceedings of their practises, and the dealing of their deuises, wherby they (as we see) according to the ancient enterprice of Sathan, seeke to bring all the fauorers, followers and supporters of Christs gospell, the members of Christs church, his whole flocke, and especially the chiefe proppes thereof heere on earth to vt­ter consusion.

But (deare Christians) seeing the worde of God, so much disaloweth, and God so much dis­liketh, and condemneth the practises and polli­ciesGod detest­eth the desire of shedding innocent bloud. of this peruerse and peeuish people, whose desire and onely seeking is for the shedding of innocent bloud, let vs vtterly refraine our affe­ctions [Page 15] from all familiarity of their faction, yea and let vs carefully bewarre of indifferency, as though we cared not which side did preuaile. It is a daungerous thing to bee neither hote nor colde, to be effectuall in neither side, for of suchIndifferenci [...] & lukvvat [...] nesse very perillous. saith Christ, Euomam eos ex ore meo, I will spewe them out of my mouth. Therefore in the name of our good and victorious captaine Christ Ie­sus: I earnestly exhort you, that we may al arme our selues, with a constant desire, and ardent zeale, to maintaine the truth, and not to winke at those that vnder collour of Catholickes desire a chaunge.

Wee although wee were assured to enioyeA godly ad­monition to auoid consēt vnto the de­uises of coun­ter [...]ait catholickes. not onelye our goodes, landes liberties, and li­ues: but to haue for our reward of ioyning with them great preferments, highe places, and ho­nours and dignities: For better shall the poore begger, and base seruilian, (fearing the Lord & professing his name) be, then the high & migh­ty Monarch, denying the same and reuolting from his truth: for there is no respect of persons with him, but he that feareth him and walketh in his wayes is accepted with him. And he verily denyeth him that resteth indifferent, that can saile with euery winde. Let vs therefore bewarre of inconstancy, and take heede that for feare of losse of goods, lands, liberties, or our liues, wee runne not with the multitude, nor ioyne our forces to the greatest part or likeliest companye of forreine powers, that take part with our do­mestical [Page 16] traytors, for surely it is most daunge­rous.A vveake & vvicked resolution. And the resolution to runne with greatest number is both weake and wicked, grounded vpon vnbeeleefe: a foundation laide vppon the san des, slippery and deceitfull, and of no assu­rance, whatsoeuer perswasions, reasons, or ar­gumentes they alledge to induce vs, or whatsoe­uer practises they put in vre, to moue, or incou­rage vs, to set our helping handes to their de­uises. For we haue had sufficient try all of their tirannyes, many proofs of their pernicious pra­ctises,Flattery a couer for de­ceit. and do plainly see, that they deceiue most when theyflatter fairest. They haue dispensati­ons to dissemble what dealing is there then with them? who will play with him that can cog? who will trust them that may lie by authority? who will confederate themselues with such as haueCounterfaite Catholikes like vnto Ca­melions. no faith, but like the Camelion, can turne them selues into all colours, and by dispensation, per­swade themselues free to breake what promisse, vowe, contract or loyall obedience soeuer.

Oh detestable, diuelish, damnable, drunken & drousie doltes, that winke in the day light, & stare in the darke night, that straine out a gnatteThe blind­nesse of the Papists. and swallowe a camell, that followe sathan and forsake Christ, that persecute truth and preach lies, that by wicked and sinister meanes seeke to plucke downe the godly & most religious prin­ces, to set vp Antichristian authority, crying out and saying, crucifie Christ, crucifie Christ, and deliuer vs Barrabas, hang Paule, and saue Iudas. [Page 17] And yet they are in the catholike way, they are in the way of life, they are the church, the church the church, Alas if these men be the church, who is their chaplaine, surely▪ not Christ, hee neuer taught mē to murther any, much lesse the inno­cent, he neuer commanded to rebell, much lesse to kill their soueraignes. Butlo, their fruits de­clare of what they came, he that taught Symon aCatholickes knovvne by their fruits. A president for our pre­sent conspiracies. Monke of Swynsted Abbey in Lincolnsheere, to poyson king Iohn, and absolued him before the fact, teacheth these present treacheries.

But seeing their fruits be wray the substance of their profession, Let vs passe ouer their hor­rible deuises and diuelish practises with more si­lence, for the ripping vp of all their wickednes, would make the godly to vomit throughe the lothsomnesse thereof. Wherefore let vs craue of God their conuersion▪ or vtter confusion, & the extirpation of them (if it were possible) out of the lande, they are worse then the frogges of Aegipte: yea what can bee more perillous, then their pollicies and practises? But they are men, and therefore haue we so much the lesse cause to fear their forces, for God is on our side, though the multitud be of theirs. Let vs not feare ther­foreGod is on out side, therfore the les cause to feare man the braggs of corruptible fleshe, althoughe they haue already cast lots vpon our garments. possessions and goods, and although they saye, come let vs deuoure them vp quick, let vs set v­pon them, and destroy them: let vs ouerthrowe them that they rise not againe: these are vayne [Page 18] wordes, these are of the vaunts of vaineglorie,The practises of the vvic­ked turne to their ovvne perdition. and shall returne as prickes in their owne eyes: and as their owne swords into their owne bow­els: For God who is true, (and these men lyers) hath spoken it, and he wil performe it. Where­fore let vs in a stedfaste hope, holde faste by the promises of our good God, who hath made vs, and assured vs of his helpe, with promise that our enemies shall not preuaile: but will makeThe proui­dence of god tovvards vs and our ene­mies. them to stumble and fall, and will with ioy rid vs out of their handes: he wil not suffer the cru­elty of our enemies further to touch vs, then shall make to his owne glory, to our comforte, their confusion and our saluation.

Wherefore I say let vs not accompt our selus weake, let vs not carry dastardlike minds, or be faint hearted, as for feare of these shadowes of e­uils, to fal from the truth. Let not the multitude of the professed enemies draw vs into the gulph of their wilfull rebellion. For assuredly god willA fevv good Christians▪ shall be strō ­ger then ma­ny counter­fait catholiks make vs more strong in our fewe true and vn­feyned Christians, then the multitudes of their counterfait catholikes.

Hee hath reuealed his trueth vnto vs moste plainlye: wherein as in a glasse wee may be­holde their falsehood, and consider and se what his mighty hand hath done for our faithfull fa­thers of olde, how he deliuered them from theirThe godnesse of God tovv­ards our god­ly fathers. enemies, from the huge multitudes of their ad­uersaries, and howe hee draue backe their ene­mies, & discomfited thē. And now euen in these [Page 19] dayes (blessed be his name therfore) he hath won­derfullie reuealed manie mischiefes, which these men haue imagined, so that their wished purpo­ses, God hath otherwise disposed, to our safetie and their shame to our comfort and their con­fusion, to the assurance of our continuall prote­ction by his mercie and their perdition by his iustice. Wherby he sheweth foorth as in a bookeThe goodnes of God ex­tended to­vvards vs in thes present dangers, shovveth vs as in a booke his aide for eue [...] more ready. before our eyes that hee is readye to take part with vs, and that he is of power and readines to helpe vs in all extremities, if we yeelde him due praises, and acknowledge the safety of our cities, and all other blessinges to come from him: and continue constant professours of his truth vnto the ende. For he that continueth vnto the ende shall be saued.

He hath hetherto preserued vs, so that the sunne of persecution hath not burnt vs by daye, nor the moone by night, as it hath beene prac­tised, but haue freely inioyed the benefite of the sunne light of the Gospell, and due course of temporal gouernment: to the vnspeakable com­fort of all beleeuers and terrour of all our ad­uersaries.The light of the gospel, & course of tē ­poral▪ gouer­nement. And as Agrippa sayd vnto Paule, the continuance of our quiet and peace, and the due course of gouernement in our lande, hath made euen the Turke to saye these thinges doe almost mooue me to become a christian. Yet as the mul­titudeVVhat good good exam­ples vvorke euen vvith fidels. ceased not to hunt after the lyfe of inno­cent Paule, but persecuted him more and more: So must euery good and faithful christian thinke [Page 20] that although our estate is very admirable, euen vnto the enemyes of the truth, yet shall Sathan rayse vp great troubles against the professours thereof, for great are the troubles that the righ­teous must suffer, but the Lorde deliuereth them out of all. And the arrowes which these rebelli­ous confederates endeuour to shoote at the true of heart shall returne vnto their owne faces, and to their owne destruction. They are mpudent & stiffe hearted, they are proud and arrogant, yea they are shrowded with the cloake of counter­feit holines to worke their cursed conspiracies.Ezech. 2. 5. And as the Prophet Ezechiel sayth, they are a re­bellious company, who will not heare, they will not perceiue, they will not vnderstande their er­rours and euill wayes, that they might retourne to God, seeke peace and ensue it. But behold the comfortable wordes of the same Prophet, feareNotable cō ­fort. not (sayth he) feare not, nor be afrayd of their wordes, be not dismayed at their great bragges, although rebels and thornes be amongest you, and although yee remaine among Scorpions, let vs not therefore feare: the Lorde himselfe hath sayd, feare nor my little flocke, for I am with youLu. 12. 32. and will be vnto the worldes ende. For behold I haue made thee a defenced Citye, and an yronGods prote­ction maketh the beleeuers strong. piller and walles of brasse, againste the multi­tude and force of thine enimies, who although they rise vp against thee: yet shall they not pre­uaile.Ier. 1. 18. For I am with thee to deliuer thee: as I wasIosh. 1. 5. Heb. 13. 6 with Moses (saith he) so I will be with thee, I willPs. 118. 6. [Page 21] not leaue thee nor forsake thee. So that we may boldlye saye the Lorde is our helper, we will not feare what man can do vnto vs. Therefore let vs not feare Ieroboam of Rome, who hath stretched out his handes euen his multitudes, to laye vio­lence vpon our most gratious Queene, and vpon our countrye. For the Lorde we see hath dried them vp, so that he cannot pluck them in again,1. King. 13. 4 The Lorde drieth vp the arme of an­tichrist, by cutting of his ministers. the iustice of God we see (his name bee praised therfore) hath cut them short, so that they could not preuaile as they deuised: the Lorde vncouer them all, and giue them with speed their due de­serts. But although they cannot all be found out as yet they shall surely perish in their owne ima­ginations, they shal melt away as wax at the fier. And although they saye we haue strength, weAlthough all our aduersa­ries yet bee not found ou [...] to abide the lavv, their ovvne con­sciences, vvil be such a law as shal make them con­sume avvay. haue power, & will preuaile, for our multitudes are great, and who can withstand our forces? A­las who is it but concludeth that these arrogant speaches haue alwayes proceeded frō the mou­thes of them that knewe not God. From the mouths of such as stood vpon their own streng­thes as if they had beene Gods. As the king of Babilon, the king of Tyrus, and now the Romish Antichrist and his adherents. But as these brag­gers and boasters haue come continuallye to vt­ter confusion, so we doubt not but the breath of his mouth who hath blowne awaye their pride, so that it is now remembred to their vtter shame and reproch, and as a by-word to all posterities, so shall these proude aspiring mindes, fall before [Page 22] the humble in Christ. For saith he: I will throw down the proud, & exalt the humble and meeke. And so long as that cōforter which was promi­sed euen the holy spirite of God doth testifye in our harts, that we yeeld not vnto these their di­uelish practises which tend only to the sheding of the bloud of innocents, which the word of God manifesteth, to be meerely against the truth: wePs. 26. 5 may truly say with Dauid, we haue hated the as­sembly of the wicked, and haue not entered into confederacie of such as haue conspired againste Christ & his spouse. And so like true subiects vn­toVVe muste [...]o [...] vvith the godlye in the [...] of pr [...]e. our prince, and obedient seruauntes vnto our God, we may wash our hands in innocency, and serue the Lord with pure affection▪ & ioyne with the godly & pure in hart, to offer the sacrifice of praise vnto the Lorde for his wondrous workes done for vs, euen in the dayes of greatest daun­gers. But our aduersaries say, that what they do, it proceedeth onely of zeale they beare vnto theThe v [...]i [...]e excuse of ro­mish catholickes for their conspi­racyes. Catholike religion, & because they will not seme to be singuler, or as men taking these thinges in hand, & practising it of their owne heades, they ascribe the foundation of their deuises to come from the wel-spring of wickednes, frō him that can dispence, and giue tolleration for murthers and al wickednes els whatsoeuer, and say further that the wise, the learned, the mightye, and the multitude agree, and giue not onelye their con­sents, but their helping hands with money, and force to further their enterprises. And therefore [Page 23] is their madnes in taking such actions in hande, so muche the more to bee tollerated and borne withall, naye to be fauoured and accepted. Alas poore weake defence, a slender excuse: were there not two hundred and fiftye Captaines, famousNum. 16. [...]1. The conspiracy of Korah Dathan and Abyram. men, ioyned themselues to Korah, Dathan & Abi­ram, whose generall consent was neither a suffici­ent excuse, neither a proofe that their rising and rebellion was lawfull. But Moses told Korah ano­ther tale, for sayd he thou and all thy companye are gathered together against the Lorde. This a­greeth with the word of God to Paule, when he went to persecute the christians, namely that heAct. 9. 4. persecuted God himselfe. And thus we see, that although these men arme them-selues with the glorious title of the Catholik church, their deui­ses manifest, and plainly betoken that their harts are set against the church, against Christ & chri­stians. And therefore although they outwardly pretend great showes of holines, deuout workes of charitie, & therby win vnto themselues credit in the world, & glory of their long continuance,The glorye of counter­fait catholik▪ though their cunning collusions haue caught as in a snare, & with their inchantments bewitched the greatest part of the world, & brag of their v­nion, of their mutuall consent, & of their mighty adherentes, & great multitudes that ioyne with them, yet seeing they haue forsaken the faith: seeing they deny the truth, fight against it: seeing they seek to resist the passage of the gospel, with out which there can appeare nothinge but the [Page 24] shadowes of good thinges: seeing they set not forth but vtterly depraue the glory of God, and the merits of his Christ. Seeing they goe about, and endeuour, as (we see) not onely to resist, but to betray and ouerthrow Moses and Aaron: We may say & truly auere, yea cōstātly affirme, that they haue a golden vizarde vpon their leaden fa­ces,A golden vi­ [...]ard vpon a [...]eaden [...]ace. they haue the names but not the effect or fruites of Catholiques. They call themselues the Church, and are not of the Church. Christ com­mandeth that the light of euerye good christian should so shine before men, that they might see the fruites of the true light. And is not murther of Princes? Sacking of Cities? Ouerthrowing of commonweales? Nay of their own natiue coun­tryes, the fruits of their light? Are not these the fruits and works of darknes, which bewray their consciences to haue no true light? Is this course which now they begun to take, they way to makeEsa. 1. 16. themselues cleane, to take away the euill of their works from before the eies of the Lorde? Is this course that they take, the meane to become ho­lye, as our heauenlye father is holy? No, no, but they eat the bread of malice & deceipt, of liyng [...]. Pet. 1. 15 & slaughter which in their mouths seemeth sweet but the operation therof shall fill euen their bo­wels with deadly grauell. But all ye that are in­fectedPro. 2 [...]. 1 [...]. A godly [...] ­ [...]eat vnto those that▪ [...]re polluted with the poyson of po­pish practise▪ & polluted with this poyson of their pra­ctises, callinto your minds (for the loue of God) the daunger of your estates here in earth, where the law throgh the iust iudgement of God, con­demneth [Page 25] you, the diuell deceaueth you, and the merciful God leaueth and forsaketh you, who al thogh he wil that al mē shalbe saued, & come to knowledge of the truth: he detesteth & abhor­reth1. Tim. 2. 4. he cannot abide wilful contēners therof. Re­ceaue therefore with meeknesse, the word of the Lorde, which is able to saue your soules. For be­holde by it we heare the most comfortable pro­mises of our mercifull God: by it we may learne the way to his truth, and to auoyde the polliciesThe benefit of the worde of God. practised against the same. Let vs therfore yeeld with reuerence our eares to heare it: our tonges with diligence to read & declare it: & our hearts with ioy & vnderstanding to cōsider it. And thē may we rightly apply this saying vnto our selues Come vnto me all ye that trauaile, and are hea­uieMat. 11. [...]8. laden and I shal refresh you. Loe deare Chri­stian brethren, what greater cōfort can we haue then this? If any be burdened in conscience that he hath addicted himself too much to the croo­ked and by wayes of mans inuentions, forsa­king the direct rule of the sacred worde, and en­deuoureth duly to reforme himselfe and to bee clensed: then I say, here is water offered, here is the liquor of life, extended in the bason of GodsThe water of life is in the basō of gods booke. booke, to refresh vs withall. Let vs ioyfully re­ceiue it, and turne vnto God and verily we shall be saued. We haue sufficient warning to flie the company of the enemies of God and Christ, and to haue no fellowshippe with their vnfruitefull workes of darkenes, let vs (I say) learne of Peter [Page 26] to saue ourselues from this froward generation,Act. 2. 40. so shall we eate the good thinges of the lande, namely we shall enioye the thinges necessary forEsa. 1. 19. our pilgrimage heere, and aboue all shall be fed with the breade tending to the feeding of our20 The revvard of rebellion. soules to life. But if we refuse and become rebel­lious, we shall be deuoured with the swoord, for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.

Wherfore I saye, let vs girde vp the loynes of our mindes, and refer ourselues faithfully vnto our Lord God, being sober, trusting faithfully &1 pet. 1. 13. perfectlye on the grace that is brought vnto vs by the reuelation of Iesus Christ: And let vs shew ourselues obedient, & not to fashion our selues to the course of our fathers, who were led in ig­norance, neither according to the course of this world, which with greedines followeth and imi­tateth the red Dragon, who seketh to deuour the gospell of our Lord and sauiour, and with tiran­ny to persecute euen to the death, all the profes­sors thereof. But the trueth is great and it shall preuaile.

Yet haue these men that pretende these mis­chifes (which haue beene so graciouslye by the almighty God reuealed) had their onely con­fidenceVVherupon these men ground the hope of their defence. in the strength of the multitude of their confederates: & in respect of the great number of them, and the little number and small com­pany of the true and constant christians, they cry out and saye they haue the truth with them: for that so manye and so learned men as holde with [Page 27] them, cannot be deceiued, neither can so many and so mighty, as take part with thē be conque­red or resisted. These are arguments which they ground vpon naturall reason, and therfore doth the worde of God vtterly confound them, as by the testimonie of the worde, and truth of God shall appeare.

CHAP. 2.

A most comfortable discouery by examples out of the ho­ly Scriptures applyed to our time, how daungerous a thing it is to measure our profession according to the mindes of the multitude, and how vaine a thing it is, to ioyne ourselues with the multitude, as the chiefest refuge and meane of our safetie in the time of trouble, wherein the perilous resolution of such as intende to holde with the most (be it with the truth or against it) is plainly proued to be meerely wicked.

AS touching the glory of the multi­tude,Multitude the glory of Popish profession. wherupon these wicked men do build the chifest foundation of their profession, as a strong argu­ment that they haue and hold the truth, and that they are victorious & inuincible, I thinke there be none so blockish, or barbarous, so voide of the knowledge of gods word, & espe­cially such as account themselues christians, can not bee so besotted with the pestiferous poyson of Sathans instigations, to holde this argument as a sounde reason, that eyther their Religion [Page 28] should bee of Christ, or that the force of their multitudes, of the huge troup of deceiued souls, shoulde be such, as that there should seeme no possibilitie, with the small number of the faith­full Christians, to withstand them: but that per­force in dispite of Christ & Christians, they will breake down the hedges of our quiet estate and godly gouernement, & intrude themselues into the vineyard of God: and the inheritance of hisVVhat gods enemies haue protested to do. sonne Christ Iesus: violate his Church and de­file his Spouse, as they by their rebellious practi­ses haue endeuoured and by their vauntes haue vainely protested. Surely yet I thinke, there is none hauing any feeling of the grace and migh­tie power of God, that can be so farre carried a­way with Sathans instigations, with Antichrists inchauntmentes, or with his wicked ministers perswasions to thinke it. But that euery sensible man, hauing but the principles of the trueth in his heart, and but entring into the rules of the profession of Christ, will holde it a weake foun­dation, to build vpon the power, the wisedome, and direction of the multitude, and a meere ab­surditie, to followe the opinions of the most, as a meane to attaine vnto the trueth, consideringThe multitud a monster of many heades that as the Philosopher sayth it is, monstrum mul­torum capitum, a monster with many heades, and tot capita tot sententiae, many men many mindes.The truth hath but one head. But the truth hath one head, one spring, one is­sue, one ende, and one meane to leade vs there­unto: euen the holy Ghost the spirite of truth, [Page 29] the taste, feeling, knowledge or direction wher­of howe many had in the time of Christ? When they all with one voyce cryed out and sayde let him be crucified. And some of them to prooue their difference in opinions, sayde he is a drun­carde, he is a Diuell, hee doeth these and these thinges by the power of Belsubub. And of Paule they sayde, he was madde: others, that hee hadHovv dan­gerous it is to cleaue vn to the multi­tude. the spirite of God, and Agrippa and Festus found no cause of death in him. Wherefore if any will so rashly take partes with the multitude, leauing the heade of the truth, and come to that springEsa. 14. 12. of errors, he taketh Lucifer by the tayle, and with him leaueth the blessed estate of the faithfull to fall downe and become a reprobate. We may not followe a multitude to do euill, neither con­sent or agree in a controuersie to decline afterEx. 23. [...]. many, and ouerthrowe the truth.

Yet we see howe these men bragge and boast themselues of the multitudes, and that their re­ligion is professed generally in most countryes and kingdomes of the worlde: and so conclude,Hovv the pa [...]ls do con­clude that their religiō ▪ is good. bonum, iustum, rectum, & approbatum est. It is good; iust, right and allowed, and why? Because the most part holde it so. But if this argument holde always true, thē was Christ rightly put to death when we knowe, that all Christians holde and cannot but confesse the contrarie, and that in him there was founde no guile, no deceite or sinne, or cause of death. And yet cryed the mul­titude out against him, that he should be cruci­fied [Page 30] for (say they) wee haue hearde him speakeSuch slaunderous & false accusations are novv cō mon vvith the Papistes against christians. blasphemy. But when they had their desire, whē he was executed, & these busie followes which so mainely cryed out against him: when they sawe the graues to open: and the vale of the temple to rent, and cleaue a sunder, when they sawe the clouds of darknes suddenly to ouerwhelme the bright beames of the sunne, when they sawe the earth to shake & to tremble, when they saw such a miraculous alteration of thinges, they changed their opinions, and altered their cōmon voices, saying surely this was a righteous man: but then it was too late, they could not call againe the in­nocent bloud which they had shed, nor restore the guiltles to life, whō they had falsly condem­ned. So surely although many & great multituds congregate themselues together, & linke dome­sticall & forrain power together with the bandesThe slaunde­rous accusa­tions o [...] the Papistes a­gainst the Queene and Realm. c. of treacherous conspiracies against the Lorde and against his annointed, falsely crying out and saying: she is an Heretique, and all those that allowe of the present estate of Englande are he­retiques: whereby they allure the weake to their wicked practises: hoping by their deuises toThey shoote at the heade, that it being cut of the members should decay The gain that these men shoulde get by their change. deuour poore Christians, and eate them vppe (as it were) like breade, shooting especiallye first of all to the heade, hoping that then the members woulde be the sooner cut off, (which both, the Lorde defende.) But if their wic­kednesse should, (which God forbid) take effect they should see then the chaunge of the bright [Page 31] beames of peace, turned into the clouds of blo­dy warres, the light of truth into the darkenes of errors, and they themselues feeling the groundsHovv their guilty con­science would vvorke in them. and rootes of their heartes to shake and tremble by the guylt of bloudy consciences, insomuch as they would not onely confesse with the mul­titude, shee was a righteous Gouernesse, but with Iudas that they haue doone most wicked­lie in betraying the innocent bloud, and with Cayne like runnagates roue to and fro, saying and accusing their offence to be greater, then they are able to beare. Furthermore theyIn fine they shall find the falsehood of their father of lies the pope, merely▪ to deceiue their expe­ctation. Gal. 5. 19. shoulde then generally (as some of them haue alreadie particularly) finde the falsehoode of their Father of lyes, who deceyueth them with his fayre, but false promises of pardon of their sinnes, and merite in heauen for their execra­ble and bloudie practises. When the Apostle affirmeth the contrarie: Namely, that Idola­ters, murderers, and such like, shall not enter in­toProofe of the condemna­tion of con­spirators. the kingdome of heauen. Then doth this man of sinne greatly deceyue those whom he perswa­deth to perseuere in their bloudie intentes, and where he perswadeth some vnder the promise of preferment, some of rewarde here, & some (nay all) vnder collour of deseruing heauen he doth itThe effects of the popes Promises. but to worke his mischiefe, & in the end to con­tent himself with them to take the due reward of Iudas hire, in vtter destruction. But forsooth some shall be made Dukes, some Earles, some of high­er some of more inferiour preferments, and that [Page 32] none that setteth his helping hand to this infer­nall action, shall goe without some reward. They shalbe crowned with Parries perpetuall ignomi­nie, with Throgmortons deserued reprooch, andThe crovvne of their glory with the due desertes of such rebellious rascalles, whose ende (without the surpassing mercies of Christ against whome they kicke) shall be with the Diuell and his Angels in perpetuall torment of the conscience: the worme whereof, shall ne­uerThe cause of their collour. die. And yet for all this cease they not to crye out and say away with these newe fellowes, these hererikes, these Lutherans:, Zwinglians, Caluinists, and such like, they reproue our darkenesse, they bewray our wickednes, they reueale our deceit­full dealing and drawe the heartes of many fromTheir deter­minat counsell christians vs. Wherefore let vs take counsaile against them let vs crucifie them, let vs burne them, breake their bones in sunder, carrie them vnto the in­quisition, & giue them Herods law, for our vowes sake. Let vs practise their destruction, for our holy father the Pope hath spoken it, he hath cō ­manded it, he hath willed it, and we will worke it, ipse dixit, he hath saide doe it, whose will and authoritie is sufficient for our safetie, come ther­fore, and let vs mooue false accusations against them, they haue spoken blasphemye against his [...]evvish [...]o [...]n sell to take christians. holinesse and therefore are woorthy to die, and therefore goe on Iudas with thy kisse, and we will follow with swordes and staues, nay go on Parry and thy fellowes dissemble with Iudas kisse, keep thy selfe close in thine owne heart, dissemble [Page 33] the matter with crooching and kneeling, andDissimulation the be­ginning, and destruction the end of their practi­ses. all dissimulation, and when thou hast giuen the token wee will bee at hande with our swordes and staues, nay with our mightie forces of ship­pinges, of multitudes of men of warre from forraine Countries, who shall ayde thee and as­sistVVilful blindnesse. thee. Oh sooles fooles, can you not yet see howe all your deuises are drowned by the waye? They passe not the seas without the mer­cifull reuelations of God to his children: whose bloud yee seeke. Perceaue ye not, the peeuish­nesse of your practises, to be presently preuen­ted? the eye of our good GOD pearceth your hearts and seeth your wicked thoughts, his eares are open and heareth your cankered consulta­tions, his mouth is readie to open, nay the birds of the ayre, nay the verye grasse of the fieldeGods good­nesse in reue­ling their conspiracies. doe reueale your treacheries, his will readie to bee reuenged of your bloud-thirstinesse, and his hande both mightie and out stretched▪ to defende his owne: Wherefore leaue off yee that deale thus wickedly. Are not yee the men that see and will not perceiue, that heare and wil not vnderstande, and haue great experience of your follie, and will not consider it? Learne, learne to be wise, forsake euil, cleaue vnto good­nesse, flie these pernicious practises, and leane not to the hope of ayde of the multitude, or of preferment or anie sure rewarde for your com­fort, from that deceyner. I wish to God, that it might please him, to conuert you so that you [Page 34] might returne and truely seeke after the lyuing GOD, whome onely to serue is life, and whom thus manifestly to denie is death: which if you will not doe, it is my parte euen in ChristianHovv euery Christian ought to pray for these mē. charitie and zeale, to praye him to confounde you and your deuises. Take heede therefore be warned, let not custome or the multitude make you faine to followe their follie. God will not be mocked with all, hee hath torne the visarde of your faces, founde you out, and shewed vs what ye are: namely, hypocrites, dyssemblers, deceitefull, and such as vnder your muffull, and mussell of holinesse, carrie diuelish deuises: vn­der the outwarde habite of Christians, the in­warde heart of Iudas, vnder the title of Ca­tholiques,The ven [...]u [...]e of hipocrisie. Caynes crueltie. Wherefore nowe conuert, or else will not God holde you guilt­lesse, not only you that haue vowed the attempt of the action, but as manye as desire in heart the execution thereof shall stande in like spott of conscience, before his tribunall seate: youNot only the act but the desire is to bee auovded. Indifferencie perillous. (I saye) that by your coldenesse in the trueth, stande as men indifferent, beware, come out from among them, flie flie that huge whore of Babylon, bee none of her trayne, who with her poysoned positions, hath enchaunted the grea­test part of the worlde, and hath so bewitched the multitude, that what by dispensations & ab­solutions, sinne increaseth, and what by falsely a­wardingThe effecte of the popes dispensations an increase of sinne. heauen and hell to such as hee list, by terror of the one and presumption of the other, [Page 35] it appeareth manifestly that hee hath wonne the most part of the worlde to commit spiritual for­nication with him: and to run after his will hi­ther and thyther, to commit all kinde of villany with greedinesse heaping together such a hugeThe Popes assistants. number of many sorts of men, Papists, Athistes, Newters, and such like, to performe that which God preuenteth, who is euen forst to say: I will come downe, and be reuenged vpon these men.

Wherefore, let vs beware that we run not with the multitude, for we shalbe then infected with their fornications, wee shalbe defiled with theVVe muste bevvare of the multitude pitch of their deceitfull doctrine & deuises. But let vs vtterly detest, and carefully eschewe the fa­miliaritie, the loue, the league, the friendship & societie of those men that congregate thēselues together against the Lord & against his annoin­ted: Let vs exclude our selues out of their ac­quaintāce, that hold of superstitious vanities, yea although the most part of the worlde do allow, yea if all the worlde should imbrace that which the worde of God condemneth, we may con­stantly affirme, and boldly pronounce to be spi­rituall whoredome, wherein we seeme to consent to strang gods, or to strang deuises to serue the true God: to forsake the most sweete and whol­some direction of the worde of God, and yeeld our consentes vnto straunge doctrine, to for­sake Christ and cleaue vnto fantasies, as manie of our forefathers haue done, and too manie in these dayes doe, onely to walke the broade way [Page 36] with the multitude without further defence or warraunt for the obstinate and wilfull star­ting from the trueth. But suche as holde of the trueth, suche as imbrace the Gospell, and seeke their saluation in Christ, will duely auoide this daungerous immitation, and not bee dis­mayde at the name and mightie threates of the multitude.

Therefore, as it hath pleased our goodThe goodnes of God to­vvards vs. God, to bring vs from our auncient captiui­tie and longe bondage vnder tyrannous Pha­raoh of Rome, into the lande that floweth with the milke and honie of the free professi­on and exercise of the trueth: Let vs bee vn­feynedly thankefull, and repose our confidence in his mightie protection, to be deliuered fromFor Gods protection tovvards vs, we must be care­full of our duties to him his tyrannie, and from the force of his migh­tie and stronge multitudes, who as hee hath doone these great thinges alreadie whereof wee haue such great cause to reioyce: So as­suredly (if wee holde faste by his power in faith and thankefulnesse of heart) hee will foreuer preserue vs, and not suffer vs to hurt our foote against the stumbling blockes of their in­uentions.

Let vs not therefore be dismaide though the grand captaine, of the enimies of gods truth (he that possesseth the seate of Sathan) haue drawne such a huge multitude after him, although hee seeme to binde euen kinges with the bandes of his enchauntements and enioyne them to rayse [Page 37] their powers in his behalfe, against those that professe the name of Christ: although they haue bent their bowes and made readie their quiuers ful of sharpe arrows: although they haue whet­ted their swordes, prepared powder, peeces and shot: let vs not (I say) be any whit at all dismaydGod being iealous of his ovvne glory vvill not suffer the vv [...] ked to pre­uaile▪ at these their hautie attemptes. For beholde God who is iealous of his owne cause will not suffer his honour to be throwen in the dust, his Church to be ouerthrowen, his trueth troden downe, nor mans owne inuentions (grounded vppon the weake foundation of good intent, and not vppon the rocke, the worde of God,) to goe awaye with the glorie. For surely great is the truth and it shall preuaile, let Herode rage,Ma. 2. 1. 16. let Iudas dissemble, let Pilate Iudge, let all theLu. 23. 18. crue of Antichristian potentates conspire, con­sulte,The truth vvil preuaile notvvithstā ­ding all re­sisters. condemne, controule, coniure, afflicte, persecute, and seeke by all meanes to suppresse the trueth. It shall in dispighte of them and all their forces, breake foorth, appeare, and shew it selfe most triumphantly, to the vnspeakeable comforte of the little flocke of Christ, and to as great terror of these men & mightie multitudes, as the renting of the temple, shaking of the earth and the other strange euentes at the crucifying of Christ, were vnto that huge multitude, of the aduersaries of the truth in those dayes: yea farre greater, forasmuch as it is nowe plentifullie preached, manifest and auncient: then newe and straunge and not reuealed to all▪ Wee are nowe [Page 38] voyde of all excuse, and although Christe him­selfeNo excuse novve for the obstinate blinde. prayed his Father not to laye the cryme of his death vppon them, or to their charge, in re­spect of their ignorance, it shalbe farre otherwise with those that in these daies so obstinately seeke to crucifie him againe.

But to imagine or thinke, that eyther the trueth is tyed to the multitude, or to bee o­uercome by the wisedome, the pollicie, the force, or multitude of men, or that the rage of Tyrauntes, can extinguishe that ardent and godlie zeale, that by the instinction of the ho­lieIt is meere in credulity to thinke that the truth may be suppressed by the force of man. Ghost is imprinted in the heartes and con­sciences, of the faithfull members of the as­sured heade, and vnmooueable rocke Christe Iesus, were meere incredulitie, nay a meere denyall of Christe, and of his power and ver­tue. Wherefore be it farre from vs, to yeelde a­nie prerogatiue at all vnto the multitude, fur­ther then may stande with the woorde of God. And for our instruction and farther comfortes sake, let vs with pure heartes and innocent in­tentes looke backe & consider, what our good God hath doone for our Fathers of olde, that did professe his name aright, whereby wee shall haue due proofe, that it is not the multitude that imbrace his trueth, nor that can resist, sup­presse, or preuayle against the same, although from the beginning the church of God hath bin farre the least part of the worlde, the least part of euerie countrey and kingdome: the least part [Page 39] of euerie Citie, yea the least part of euerie con­gregation. Yet such hath beene the care, and lo­uingGods care tovvards hi [...] smal number. affection of God towardes his fewe and small number that he hath not suffered them at anie time to take the foyle at the handes of his aduersaries beeing, neuer so manie and migh­tie.

But doubtles this their argument of the forceThe argu­ment of the multitude hurtfull to the vveake. and soundnesse of the multitude, doth not a lit­tle harme, with the weaker sort of people, whose heartes are not grounded vppon the sure foun­dation of Gods mightie protection. And by reason thereof is the verie sounde of the multi­tude, terrible, only for that they knowe not, nor consider the mightie workes of the Lord, whose hand bringeth mightie thinges to passe, they are ignorant of the truth, and therefore can not con­ceyue the goodnesse of the Lord: but desperately break out into this dangerous resolutiō: namely to take part with the multitude, be it with or a­gainst the truth. They consider not how that godRo. 2. 11. hath said, that he hath chosen the weake thinges of the earth, to confound the mightie, the foo­lish, such as in the world are accounted foolish, to confound the wise in their own conceits: the vile and base ones and such as are not regarded but despised in the world, he hath raised vp and ap­pointed to bring those things to nought which in the iudgment of man are of great estimation and account: and the cause is that none should too much glorie in his owne strength, wisdome, [Page 40] or power. No flesh should glorie in the presence of God.

Is not this sufficient to mooue the heartes of all those that couet to be accounted Christians to stande in the truth, although they be therefore despised in the worlde, threatned of the worlde, and are as strangers, and outcastes to the world? rather then to accompanie the multitude and become glorious in the world and hated of god: strong in the worlde, and weake in the truth, fa­milier with the world, & at discord with Christ: conuersant in the worlde, and straungers in the Church of God. Seeing that it is not the num­ber of the persones, the power or glorious showe of the persons, but the inwarde godlye zeale of the heart, the vnfeyned affection ofNot the out­vvarde show but the in­wa [...]de zeale, maketh to perseuere. the heart, which bringeth foorth perseueraunce in the truth vnto the ende, whome God regar­deth to whom he giueth aide to stand and victo­rie wherein truely to boast, and say the mightie hande of the Lorde hath done this thing, and in so doing he will not suffer his little contemned children to be confounded of the high and hau­tie minded multitudes, but will confound them in their own imaginations. And therfore saith he feare not my little flocke, be not discōforted or discouraged, I wil fight for you & wil scatter your enemies before your faces, I wil throwe downe and confounde these wicked people that delight and long for warre, that thirst after bloud and hunger after the destructiō of the Saints of God. [Page 41] But we see that our heauenly father comforteth vs, he louingly willeth vs & counsaileth vs gladly to leaue the bondage of Aegypt, speedely to flyeThe good pleasure of the lord is to haue vs leaue bondage, [...] take liberty. from the filthines of Sodome, and with Noah to enter into the arke of our safety, euen to the a­miable courtes of the Lord, to hold our selues by the piller of the trueth, euen the Gospell of his Christ, and to visit his temple. So will he be our God and we shall be his children, he will be our father, and we shall be his sonnes and daughters whome hee will mightelye protect and defende from the force and erronious course of the mul­titude. And whatsoeuer Sathan, Antichrist, and their adherets doe deuise or imagine against vs, howsoeuer they seeme to feare vs, and dismay vs with their multitudes, let vs be patient, way­ting the Lordes leasure for our deliuery. Let vs be both carefull and constant in our callinges, and euery one from the highst to the lowest, the heade and members euery one according to his office and function, frame our selues diligentlye to haue cleare heartes and readye handes, in the feare and due reuerence of him that hath pro­mised vs ayde, to stand (not only vpon our own garde) but as one body compact of many mem­bers stand all vpon the garde and defence of all: to the honour of our maister and comfort of the whole congregations of Christes churches a­broad and at home. And especially let those that are in authority ouer the inferiour sorts call vn­to minde the due care, diligent regarde, and [Page 42] watchfull eye that Paule the approoued ministerThere muste be a godlye care in all sortes of men and a vvatch full eye, after the example▪ of Paule. of God had vnto the Thessalonians, who in the time of Sathans busie rouinges abroade to de­ceiue, fearing least they should be seduced from that trueth which he with trauaile and great in­dustry had preached vnto them, beeing carefull and truly desirous of their saluation, sent Timo­theus vnto them to put them daylye in minde ofVVee muste dayly haue in minde Sa­thans diligēce to seduce vs, and with grace to arme our selues a­gainst him. sathans diligence, in subuerting and slandering the truth, whereby he doubted that they might be easely drawne into erronious deuises, and so his endeuour to retaine them in their due obedi­ence to God shoulde haue beene in vaine. And surely if we duelye consider the present estate of our dayes, and how the diligence of sathan and his complices, the kinges of the earth, and the manye nations of the worlde, doth now shewe it selfe as we see in such manifest sort as euery Paule of our daies hath great occasion to appoint ma­ny Timothies to ouer-see the estate of the Thessa­lonians of this land: such I meane as l [...]ue tasted of the sweete and comfortable doctrine of theVVee had need of many vvatchmen. gospell of Iesus Christe, which Sathan and his wicked ministers, Antichrist and his adherents, Seminaries and Iesuites, and their confederates seeke to resiste, and vtterlye to supplant, and to turne the hearts of Christians backe againe intoThe endeuor of the popes ministers. Aegypt, and to their auntient bondage there, from the comfortable land of the gospels liber­tye, to murmure and grudge at Moses and Aaron to ioyne themselues to Korah, Dathan, and Aby­ram, [Page 43] and to the multitude, and to stand resolute, to run with them headlong into eternal destru­ction.

This we see is the resolute opinion of the mostThe good & godly resolu­tion of Si­drach, mesech & Abednago of them, that haue not the truth in their hearts. But it is a resolucion contrary to the resolucion of Sydrach, Mesech, and Abednago: for they sawe the multitude to doe that which they detested, and stoutly refused: and whereunto if they had framed their affections, and measured their opi­nions according to the course and general con­sent of the whole multitude, they had runne into wilfull rebellion againste the liuinge God, and committed horrible idolatry, in giuing worship vnto a false God, to a stocke, a block, to dirt, and drosse of the earth: they sawe the whole multi­tude to fall downe at the sounde of the trum­pets, and gaue solemne worship vnto the image, yet coulde not that president preuayle with them, they sawe it no sufficient warraunt forTo follovv the multi­tude is no good excuse. them, no lawfull excuse before the liuing God whome they serued, and therfore absolutely re­solued themselues, not to follow the multitude in an action so repugnant against the truth, and so great a derogation of the glorye of the high God. This was a good and a godly resolucion, wherein they constantlye perseuered, beeing ap­prehended as rebels againste the kinges decree, they were neither dismayed in respect of the multitude, nor tied vnto consent vnto the thing in respecte that the multitude helde it as a [Page 44] necessary duty, and seruice done for the kinges pleasure: No although they sawe the Nobles, Princes, Dukes, Iudges, Receiuers, Counsailors, and all the officers and gouernours of all pro­uinces, yea all the nations vnder the kinges go­uernment to fall down and worship it, they were nothing mooued to commit such abhominati­on before the Lord. The fierce and cruell coun­tenaunce of the king himselfe, the threats of his tortors, torments, and of death it selfe could not discourage them or remooue their hearts from this sounde resolucion, this godly and salutarye resolucion, seeing the kinges deuise to bee so meerely repugnant against the truth. Thus must euery good Christian, euery one that will thinkeChristians ought to haue this resoluti­on. himselfe the true member of Christ, resolue him selfe, namely constantly and boldye to refuse to bowe their knees, or doe any outward action to Baal of Rome, to the dishonor of the true God, to fulfill and satisfie the sawcie, malapert, & hau­tie minde of him that hath set himselfe againste God, crauing his honour to be done vnto him, and his power to be attributed vnto him: no, al­though we see many and mighty multitudes toVVeaknes of potentates in yeelding seruitude to Antichrist. bowe to him before our eyes, though we see Emperours, Kinges, and mightye potentates of the worlde to kisse his feete, and to afforde their neckes to bee his foote-stooles, and all the wise men of many nations to doe him reuerence: Let vs refuse it, for beholde it is meerely against the truth: and therfore the president of the mighty, [Page 45] the president of the multitude, the president of generallities is nothing to vs that haue & ought to gouerne oure affections by the worde of God.

But we see a stronge resolucion in manye ofThe resolutiō of recusants. the obstinate recusants of our time, euen of these dayes, which whether it doe agree with the or­der of that of these three men, it were not amisse to consider. But suche is the subtiltie of their shamelesse deuises, that it is almost impossible to discribe their resolucion rightly. For mark where as Sydrach, Misech, and Abednago, were willed to fall downe and worship the image, they stoode not mute, or dumbe, or with this bare desence: namely pardon vs, we are resolued not to do it, as our recusants do. But they did boldly yeelde a reason of their recusancie, sayinge that it was contrary to their duty to the liuing God, whom they ought onely to serue. But these men will maintaine their idolatry euen with this onely aunswere: Forsooth we are resolued, wherin, and how? Forsooth to perseuere in idolatrye, and to dissemble before men, and yet to carrye cleareA speciall thing to bee noted in the resolution of our recusāts. consciences before God (as they say). Here is a notable thing to bee noted in their resolucion, namely that it is lawfull for them to dissemble, and to frame themselues in the outward action, like vnto the thing commaunded, and inwardly to carrye a contrary desire, and yet this is no de­niall of him (as they say) whom they pretend to serue. But I thinke they holde this but as a shift, a [Page 46] point of pollicie, and not as the truth, their holyeDispensation for distunula­tion. father contentes himselfe to dispence with the worde of God in that behalfe, and tels his pu­piles that wander abroad to worke his wicked­nesse that it shall not be layde to their charge inThis is taken from the ser­pentssubtilty in seducing Ad [...] & [...]u [...]. the laste daye, that they haue denied Christe in counterfeyting their consciences, and framing their fashions according to the time: as with the wicked to be wicked, with the holy to bee holye in shew, to professe light in wordes, and to hold with darknesse in the heart: they may by tollera­tion outwardlye please men, and inwardly serue God. How rash were these men whome Nabu­chadnezer condemned? They might haue desem­bled the matter and haue had the fauour of the Kinge? They mighte haue doone as the moste did, and haue pleased all men, and yetA damnable pollicy pra­ctised by the Papists. haue borne inwardly a conscience to God. Nei­ther did Paule well, when he constantly confes­sed Christ, neither haue the Martyrs done wise­ly in so stout profession of the truth, they might haue turned their coates, according to the com­pany, as moste of these fellowes doe, that follow the multitude, and haue saued their skinnes whole. But these men thinke they doe well to seeke to sleepe in whole skinnes, according to the prouerbe. But the time shall come that the vizardes of their villanye shall be pulde off, and their cloake and counterfeyt consciences reuea­led, and take their rewarde with the reprobate, whom God abhorreth.

[Page 47]Christe him-selfe sheweth them wherevnto they are lyke to trust, sayinge, he that seeketh ra­ther to obey man then God, or seeketh to deny God before man, suche will Christ denye before his father in heauen.

But what is the cause that so manye come so neare God in the outwarde shew, and stande a­loofe in their hearts? That they come outward­lieThe founda­tion of dissi­mulation is dispensation▪ to heare the worde of God, and be inwardlye verie recusants? That they can kisse Christ, and Christians with Iudas in the face, and stob dag­gers at their hearts in their desires. Is not this the verie cause, namely that whatsoeuer GOD commaundeth outwardlye to bee done, and in­wardly to be beleeued, his holinesse dispenseth with the one and pardoneth the other? Carry­ing mens affections to the pleasing of mortall men, manifestly to displease the immortal God

But behold these three men of the true God, were of a contrary minde, they were ledde withIt cannot found with the vvill of God to dis­semble before men. a farre, contrary spirit, and mooued with a con­trary zeale. For the truth resolued them that it coulde not hang consonaunt to the will of their heauenly father, to dissemble before the worlde, (what inwarde zeale soeuer they seeme to haue) to saue their owne liues, although we see these wicked men▪ that practise the perdicion of the faythfull, and accompte them-selues Catholi­ques, whose dispensation commeth from the false foxe of Babylon, to put their enterpry­ses in practise, altogeather vnder coloure of [Page 48] some notable virtue: eyther of loue and dutifullParries counterfait obedience. obedience as did the false traitour Parrie, who could with lowly crouchinges, and reuerent be­hauiour outwardlye, with all hayle Madam, and suche like goodlye tokens of dutifull affection, when in deede his heart was so full fraught with the poyson of popish pardons, that lay so heauy vpon his conscience that ere he coulde vomit it out to the purpose of his maisters will, it brake his owne bowels, and his filthy carcas, crackt hisHis due re­vvarde. owne cragge. A plaine reward for a dissembling sot. Here might be remembred these new cho­sen champions, of late armed against the head of our quiet in this lande, whose maner of procee­dinge in their practises, was with like pollicye,Conspiracy of Ballard & the rest of his confederats. Barnewell, Ballarde, Babington, and Bellamie, with the reste of that rebellious rout, a multitude of miscreantes, a cursed crue of Cormorants, who sought to deuour the bloud of so manye noble personages, pillers of our prosperitie, and props of Gods trueth, their practize was perdicious, their pardons poysoned, their pardoner worse then poyson it selfe, yea worse then the poyson of Aspes, I meane the dispenser of their diuilishe deuice. The remembraunce of whose pretended mischiefe is loathsome vnto Godly mindes, it is contagious to bee considered, stench in the no­strels of the God of heauen, and an euerlastinge ignomie and byworde to all their posterities for euer more in earth. The resolucion of these menTheir damnable resolutiō was damnable, like vnto the vowe of those that [Page 49] swore they woulde neither eate nor drinke tillAct. 23. 12. An encou­ragement to be constant. they had killed Paule. But as the Lorde encoura­ged Paule to perseuer in his godly beginning, to proceede to testifie of the trueth, so he encoura­geth all those that are his to bee constant in the profession of his name, notwithstandinge the vow of these conspirators, that cunningly cloak their cursed pretence with counterfeyt Catholi­cie. Nabuchadnezer made preparation to put these three poore men to the moste grieuous death, because they woulde not fall downe to worship the image, & the more to terrifie themTirants vs [...] threats to te [...]i [...]y the godly but all in vaine. sayde vnto the executioners, let the torment be seuen times more vehement then euer before, hopinge that those tirannous wordes woulde mooue the poore men rather to fulfill his idola­trous will then to abide the torture. But he was farre deceaued: For they referring themselues constauntly vnto the prouidence of the onelye Lord of hostes, sayde vnto the kinges face, know this oh king, and yeare ye this all yee multitude, that the true God whom we serue, the God that will not haue his glory by any meanes to be im­parted vnto another, is able to deliuer vs out ofThe faithfull constancy of the godly. your handes: but if it be his will to make a sacri­fice of our bodies, and that your bloudy deuises and desires take effect againste vs, yet will we notA right reso­lution. fall downe to giue honour vnto anye thing, as a God, which is not God, no although so manye both wise men and mightye multitudes satisfie the kinges will therein before vs, this is that re­solucion [Page 50] which all men that rightly profes christ must holde namely, notwithstanding the decree of the great Nabuchadnezer of Rome, wherein he commandeth and willeth all Emperors, kinges,Hovv vvee must resolue our selues, a­gainst the tyr ranny of Ro­maine con­spirators. potentates, realmes, kingdomes, nations and toonges at the noyse and sounde of his Manda­mus and precipimus sub poena mortalis peccati, and suche like sharpe commaundementes, to fall downe before his holinesse, and the idolatrous and adulterous puppettes and toyes which hee hath caused to be set vp, and to doe suche other bastardly seruice as he commaundeth contrary to the worde of God, and to beleeue and con­fesse that which the Lorde hath not willed but forbidden.

We must with these men put on the complet harneis of a cleare and constaunt conscience, and euen to the faces not onelye of these that haue authoritye to pronounce his excommu­nications, curses, and comminations, but e­uen to the face of that proude, prouder, and proudest of all proude prelates of the Romishe rabbell himselfe.

Know this thou Pope, and heare this yee pa­pistes, that the Lorde whome wee serue in hisOur resoluti­on. Christe, in whome we truste, is able to deliuer vs out of your handes. But if it bee his good pleasure, for his glories sake, for our saluati­ons sake, and your reprobations sake, to per­mitte oure bodyes to bee made sacryfices by your blouddy handes, we will not fall downe [Page 51] vnto youre abhomminable deuises, wee will not ioyne with your confederacies, although you haue alreadye decreed our torments to bee made seuen times, yea seuentie tymes seuen tymes more bitter then before. And then (deare Christians) vppon this our cleare and impollu­ted resolucion shall that God whome wee serue deale with vs, as hee dealt with these three men, namelye although we bee caste into the flamesOur vndoubted comforte in Christ, in all sorts of torments is not to bee doubted. of bitter torment, hee will so mittegate the griefes thereof, by the inwarde comfort which then he will send vs, that it shall euen in the ter­rour of death bee a sufficient testimonie vnto our consciences, that he hath a carefull eye vnto vs: and by our deliuerye shew euen vnto these persecuting executioners, that it is not their ty­rannie that can suppresse, or the cruell force of the multitude that can resiste the approoued and manyfest trueth which wee professe, and will shewe and openlye declare that the deuises and imaginations of man are but vayne: Naye further to shew his iudgementes of these bloud­thirstieGods iudge­mentes a­gainst the vvicked conspirators of his seruantes confusions. men, he will sende their destruction with the same torment they prepared for his children

For let vs beholde, and to our comfort and for our learning consider, that notwithstanding these three poore men were caste into so fer­uent a burninge flame, that there appeared no possibilitie for them to escape, euen suddaine consumation of their bodyes with the force of the fier: yet suche was the power and proui­dence [Page 52] of him that hath all thinges in subiection vnder his feete, that he preserued them in suche sort as in the midest of the fire they walked safe­lye, and to shewe his iustice threwe out the slame vpon those ministers of the king that exe­cuted his will therin, so that they that digged the pit for others, fel themselues into the same, they were taken with the snare, that they prouided for others: Euen so shall that proude Haman of Rome in the ende bee hanged in the gallowes that he hath set vp for godly Mardocheus of En­gland. We must thinke that these examples wereGood exam­ples to be applied to our time. written for our learning, and verye sitte for our time to be considered, according to the present course of men: for as then Nabuchadnezer thoght that the consent of so many great men vnto his idolatry approoued the same to bee very sound and good: And when these three men stoode in defence of the true religion of God, as now weGods proui­dence al­vvaies ready to help his. see that our small Islande of Englande amonge many other famous countries of the world, hol­deth and possesseth the gospell with part of o­ther nations, as it pleaseth God to afforde his grace among vs. And as then these three men were condemned of the multitude, and our sel­ues in like maner misliked of the moste: as the liuing God then prouided for their safety so (no doubt) he dooth and will doe for ours, though not in present outwarde deliueraunce, yet no doubt in inwarde comfortes, whereby there ap­peareth no cause why the children of GOD [Page 53] should feare the multitude, although the peopleGod is al­vvaies ready either in out­vvard deli­uery or in­vvard com­fort to aid ye in a common prouerbe agree, that many heades are better then one: whereby they goe about and seeme to approoue the venemous and bru­tish serpent Hydra to be the wisest beast that euer was in respecte of the multitude of his heades, when we know many silly creatures of the earth in many vertues to exceede such monsters. But this seemeth not agreeable to my matter, bee­ing Euangelical, for that this application is poe­ticall: But surelie it is not without good morall: for the multitude in deede may be well compa­red to a beaste of manye heades vnstayed in re­spect of manye guides, vnconstaunt in respect ofThe multitude vvith their many heads resembled vn to Hydra the serpent. many mindes, vnruly in respect of manye mem­bers. And therfore this argument of many heads better then one, holdeth not in causes of hea­uenlye reuelations, for the trueth commeth not from the multitude, it proceedeth not from the wise, nor is to be expected of the learned in re­spect of the many professing one things or in re▪ spect of the wise in naturall pollicies: nor in re­spect of profound study: It commeth not from men of whatsoeuer iudgement, but euen from the very spirite of God the teacher thereof. The truth is Gods, it is of God, and his gift it is thatThe spirit▪ of God teacheth the truth. the men of base callinges, and iudgementes in worldlie causes conceiue the trueth, speake the truth, and are able to teach the trueth, which in deede of it selfe is simple, pure, cleare, and not mixed with the traditions, nor the deuises, nor [Page 54] tyed to the power or strength of mortall men.

And therefore, to shew the weaknesse of ma­nye heades, and their errours, and to confirme his truth by the handes of one, and that of theGod doeth shevv his povver not to consist in the multitude & his truth, not to be founded vpon many heads. weakest and moste frayle sexe: he caused an ex­ample in that behalfe to bee written for our ex­perience: namely that where there were manye magistrates in the Citie of Bethulya, and they all layinge there heades together, determined a course contrarye to the truth, namely, rashlye to tye the will of God, and his hande to their owne prefixed time, or els to giue ouer their Citie to the Captayne of the enimie of God: This was their resolute determination, when indeed it be­hoouedThe citizens & magistrats of Bethulia in their many heads decei­ued. them by the rule of Gods worde, to haue referred them-selues in faith vnto the good prouidence of God, as these forenamed three men did, and to tarry the Lords leasure for their deliuery. But a sillie woman perceiuing this their rashe resolucion, by the instincte of the holye Ghoste, the teacher of the truth, openly reproo­ued them, in that they shewed in themselues no sparke of patience, neither allowed that power and omnipotencie to God for their deliuerie, which he shewed to manye before them, but ty­ing (as it were his will vnto their wils) indented with him the tyme and maner of their deliuerie. And shee referring the whole state of the Citie vnto the mightye hande of the Lorde, in a per­fect hope sounded vpon the truth miraculous­lye preuayled, in deliuering, the poore besiged [Page 55] Citie from the blouddy handes of the▪ wicked idolaters.

This was a weake meane in the iudgement of man, yet did the Lorde vouchsafe vnto her proceedinges, the successe acceptable vnto the poore oppressed heartes of manye people. And let vs then but thinke the lyke, or farre more power is giuen vnto the hande of our godlyeThe godly Iudith of England shal cut off the head of Holophernes of Rome. Iudith, to cut off the hautye aspiringe heade of mightye Holophernes of Rome and his adhe­rentes, the graunde Captaine of all the aduersa­ries of Christ and Christians. These examples reprooue those that in their actions goe about either to tie Gods truth vnto their many heads, or build their resolucion vpon the might of the multitude.

If Noah had builded his resolucion vppon theNoahs resolution not builded vpō the multitude resolucion of the multitude, and had ioyned his consent vnto the resolute determinations of the multitude, hee shoulde haue had his portion with the multitude in the swelling and mercy­lesse waters, and not haue tasted the sweetnesse of the prouidence of GOD in the Arke. So surelye if we shoulde looke into the common sort of men, into the generalitie of consents, or into the common vse of countries, & not guide our selues by the rule of Gods worde we coulde not but perish in the merciles waters of errours, and neuer enioy the sweet comfort of the Arke with the true Church of Christ.

[Page 56]And therefore had Lot a care, a diligent eye,Lots care & diligence to auoide the generall course of the people of Sodom. and carefull consideration vnto the course of the Citye of Sodome, and feared to giue consent vnto the multitude because he knew their ge­nerall inclinations, declininge from the right waye: And so leauing the multitude vnto their owne course, tooke a priuate course with him­selfe, according to the direction of the trueth, and was saued from the destruction that fell vpon the multitude, so that we maye see that we are not to fayle with the most▪ if we will arriue in the port of safety, and auoyde the daungers of destruction.

There was no small companye, but a great multitude, a huge armie that departed out of Aegypt, to goe into the lande of promise, but because with a generall consent they declyned from the trueth, and fell to murmuring againste Moses and Aaron the seruauntes and ministers of GOD, euerye man ioyning himselfe to the multitude, and the multitude looking backe a­gaineThe daunger of looking back into auncient errors. with a longing desire to retyre into Aegypt they came all too short of the promised plea­saunt lande: But Ioshua and Calib who depen­ded vpon the truth of the liuing God.

Euen so a great number and mightye multi­tude were in the dayes of the late famous KingeMany vvere brought out of Romishe Egipt in the daies of king H. 8. Henrie the eyght, brought out of the bondage of the spirituall Romishe Aegypt, into the plea­saunt lande of the Gospell, and so continued [Page 57] the dayes of the godly King Edward the sixt, andThe continu­ance of our▪ reduction o [...] of Romishe Egipt by K. [...]. 6. Our recapti­uity in the daies of Qu. Mary. Our redemp­tion by Q. Elizabeth. To beware of murmuring against her Maiesty and other godly magistrats. in the perillous daies of Queene Marie they start backe againe into their former thraldome, from whence againe our good Ioshua, Queene Eliza­beth hath redeemed them. And therefore let vs beware of murmuring against her, let vs rather be constant in beleeuing in the promises of our good God, who hath promised vs the fruition of the pleasant lande of knowledge, if we be tru­ly obedient vnto his will: otherwise he will cut shorte all those that rather couet to runne with the generaltie of other Countryes, and will not accompanie good Ioshua and Calib, in our iorney alreadie taken in hand, in the name of Christ our heade, vnder the conduct of Moyses and Aa­ron.

It is therefore a perillous thing and warily to be auoyded, to yeelde our sences but to the re­membrance of the errors of olde, and the verie name of the highest bishop, the vicare of Christ, the Pope, yea and the very title of Papistes is to be sent into the furthermost bounds of vtter ob­liuion, yea all the ceremonies of their enchanted and Nicromantiall doctrines are to be detested & to be thrust out of euerie mans minde, much more is it to be auoyded to giue our consentes, againe to entertaine the palpable and cloudie doctrine wherewith our Fathers, and the grea­test part of the worlde were and are besorted. For whoso imbraceth these thinges, or but loo­keth backe againe into thē with desire to folowe [Page 58] them, shall neuer attayne vnto that promisedThe danger or looking back into E­gipt or Sodō appeareth by Lots wife. lande, the newe Ierusalem, nor escape the sud­dayne destruction of Sodome, but with the wife of Lot be turned into a pillar of stone, with­out sense, feeling, or knowledge of the liuelie and lightsome trueth, the waye whereunto, is pure, playne, direct, and straight, according to the steppes of Christ, who in all his teachinges, preachinges, and proceedinges, vsed neyther inuention, pollicie, or tradition of mans ima­gination: neyther was he tyed with the feare of mans persecutions, led by the example of the most, or carried away with the force of the mul­titude.

But such is the enmitie and dispight of Sa­than against the trueth, and the professors there­of, that he hath from age to age raysed seuere persecution against it, and them: and that not by the least and men of weakest abilitie of theSathan rai­seth euen kings to per­secute the godly. Dauids com­plaint against conspirators, to be applied to these daies earth onely, but euen Kinges of the earth, and Princes of the worlde, to conspire and assem­ble their multitudes togeather against the Lorde and against his annoynted. And therefore as Dauid in his dayes was mooued to complayne in that behalfe: so may wee at this present iust­lye crye out and saye, that Kinges of the earth ryse vppe with their armies of their multitudes, banding themselues with their bloudie Cap­taines, roouing like Lyons abroade, and like beares and wylde boares, thorough the worlde to teare, to spoyle, and roote out all the godlie [Page 59] vppon the earth, putting their confidence in the force of the multitude, as though they shoulde alwayes vanquish, and neuer bee van­quished.

Euen so did the Aegyptians, who puttingeThe foolishe vaunts of the Egiptians. their truste in the multitude of their men, and charriottes, their horses, and their strongly bar­red, and artificiallie wrought waggons, fitte for the warres, perswaded themselues, euen sure of the praye before the onset, deuiding the spoyle before the victorie: But the mightie GOD, whose power is not included within the multi­tude of an armie, nor tyed to the showe of much munition, perceiuing their deuises, founded vppon the strength of their owne armes alienate from and not ioyned with the inuincible power of his right hande, to be vaine, weake, fryuolous and fantasticall, laughed their vaine hope, they conceiued of their owne strength, to scorne: and because he would haue his owne power to bee seene, and their weakenesse to fall as dounge in their owne faces, hee turned their brauerie and proude boasting to their owne shame, their pryde into their owne perdition, and made their mightie multitude an argument of their owne weakenesse. The hystorie hereof is playne, and a most comfortable instruction for vs, and a notable caueat, for suche as shall stande too much vppon their owne power and prowesse, not taking the Lorde for their strength, whose hande stretcheth it selfe out for the defence [Page 60] of his children, and ouerthroweth such, in the redde sea of vtter perdition, which with hautie Pharaoh of Rome shall say, what is God that can deliuer little Englande out of my handes?

Let vs apply some other examples out of the writinges of the truth, to confirme these migh­tie workes of the Lorde.

Nabucadnezer putting his affiance, in his own power and strength of the multitude, rose vp a­gainstThe strength of Nabucad­nesa [...]s multi­tude was his own confusiō the children of God, saying: who can de­liuer you out of my handes? what God is there (sayth he) that can preuaile against me, for your deliuerie out of my hands? For haue I not con­queredIer. 27. 1 2. King. 24. 7 Aegypt? haue I not destroyed Ierusalem, brought manie and mightie kingdomes into subiection? And haue I not of my selfe by my mighty multitude performed many like famous exployts? Notwithstanding whose great brags, whereby hee thus beganne to eleuate and heaue vp himselfe, not onely aboue all other Princes in the worlde, but endeuoured to drawe all men into adoration of him as a God, saying most ar­rogantly: who is God that can deliuer you outA resemblāce betwene the actions of old Nabuc of Babilon, & the nevv Nabu▪ of Rome of my handes? the Lorde against whom he rose, confounded him in his owne strength. And doth not the great master of all this mischiefe, and present hurleburlie in the worlde exalt himselfe in like arrogant sorte? perswading such as will ioyne with him in his diuelish deuises, that they shal not feare but proceede in their conspiracies: and that there is no God that shall withstande [Page 61] them, for he hath dispensed for them, and hath the liuing God (as it were) within the limites of his vsurped power & authoritie. But let vs note (I pray you) what became of this proude Kinge Nabucadnezer, that wee by perfecte implication, may compare the likelihood of the ende of this Nabucadnezer of Rome, vnto the former for our instructions sake.

The God of hoastes who alwayes fauoureth,The fauour of God tovvar­des such as build their enterprises vpō the truth. aydeth, assisteth, protecteth, and conducteth the humble, and such as attempting weightie mat­ters attribute the good successe thereof vnto his goodnesse, mercie, power and prouidence: and who detesteth, abhorreth, resisteth and vtterly ouerthroweth such as stande vppon their owne power and strength: that God (I saye) looked downe, and behelde the wayes of this tyraunt, this boasting and aspiring creature, that blushed not to set himselfe vp against God, and the god­ly,Gods iustice in casting dovvne the proud. and pluckt him down from his high and glo­rious seate of maiestie, from his chayre of pride, and brought him to the most base, most vile and more then seruile estate of all other men of the worlde: namely vnto the condition of a brute beast, deuiding him from the familiarity and so­cietie of men, to accompanie the most sauage &Nabuchadnezars revvard for his pryde brutest beastes of the fielde, to leaue the delicate dyet of his Regall table, to feede vppon the hearbes, grasse and weedes of the earth, euen as the oxe liueth, so liued he, by the space of seauen yeares in the wildernesse, a dombe beast, whose [Page 62] bodie (which before was curiously kept in deli­cate attire, in his kingly pallace) is nowe forst to accept of the naked attire of the bare skinne, and the same to be wette with the dewe of hea­uen.A metamor­phosis of Nabuchadnezar Here wee see was a suddaine Metamor­phosis, a straunge alteration, yet this was the change of this earthly God, of a man to become a monster, of a King, worse then a subiect, of a Captaine, worse then a captiue, an abiect not companion with the vilest subiect. Alas where is now become the great vaunts of his victories? where is the might of his multitude? where is the glorie of his much strength? where are the mightie men in whom he trusted? what seruice can they do him? what aide can they shew him? what comfort can they giue him? where is the seruice of a king become? whether is the glory of his vsurped godheade gone? Truely all is gone, and nothing left but only a poore distressed car­casse, who before accounted himselfe a God, and no man, & nowe seene to be not only no God, but in worse case then the most seruile man, yeaThe applica­tions of the [...]ll of Nab. a verie monster, his hayre become as Eagles fea­thers, and his nayles like birdes clawes. What is there more to be sayde of this man, but to ap­ply the example of the fall of his pryde, vnto theThe vauntes ofromish Nabuca [...]dnezar like vaynegloryous younge God Nabuchadne­zer of Rome, whose pryde and vayneglorious ostentation is fully aunswerable thereunto. For what doeth his hautie holinesse? doeth hee not vaunt and exalte himselfe aboue all other men [Page 63] of the earth? aboue all Emperours, Kinges, Prin­ces and Potentates? and doth hee not challenge solie vnto himselfe, that power and that autho­ritie which Christ himselfe hath left generallyHis vsurpati­ons. to all his faithfull ministers? and doeth hee not affirme the vertue of the death of Christe to bee tyed and fastened (by no other meane but by the cordes of this owne will) vnto his chayre at Rome? Hath hee not sette himselfe in the place and seate of Christe, binding the consciences of men vnder the pavne of deadlye sinne, to acknowledge him to bee the sole Vi­care of Christ here in earth? and that all other the ministers of Christe ought (vpon payne of excommunication) come in by him, liue vnder him, and to haue their authoritie from him? What is this, but to compare with the pryde of this Nabucadnezer, to say what is he that is able to deliuer you out of my hands? what Christian could not blush to consider of this vaineglory? & cannot thinke that this proud Nabucadnezer was a direct and manifest type of him of Rome.

And further to approue it, let vs looke into his manie and great bragges, wherein hee vaun­teth himselfe of his owne and his predecessors conquests, of manie, & mightie kingdomes van­quished euen with the dynt of falshoode? conti­nued with tyrannie, and led by Idolatry: terri­fying manie silly soules of the earth, saying: is there any that can deliuer you out of my hands? considering the multitudes of manie Countries, [Page 64] yea and the kinges of many Nations, that yeeld me obedience, & haue plighted me their trothes, to take my part? with these vauntes, and vomits hath hee wonne the greatest part of the worlde to followe his filthinesse: wherein he thus try­umpheth.The pride & fall of Nab vvas a [...]pe of the pride & sub [...]ersion of the Pope. But we must a little further consider of this mightie Monarke, that as this Nabucad­nezer, was the type of his pride, so surely was his fall and brutish transformation a figure of hisHo [...]v the Pope & his ad [...]erents are become trans f [...]med into bruit beasts. ruyne and decay, of his fall and subuertion. And although we yet see the plume of his pride slic­ker in the ayre, as a marke to be seene thorough all the worlde, that he keepeth and continueth his chayre of estate: yet is he cast downe, into a reprobate sence, hee and his are become brute beastes, they are fallen from knowledge and ex­cluded from the familiaritie of Christ and Chri­stians: and feede not as wee see vppon the pureTheir food bread of the Gospell, but vpon the weedes and grasse of mans owne inuentions, and the hayreThe hair of [...]ir heads. of their heades, euen all their wits ouergrowen with foolish traditions and further their nayles euen with their bloudie persecutions of Christi­ansThe [...]yles of their hāds become as the Eagles clawes, that liueth by the spoyle of the simplest birdes. By these markes is he dissiphered and knowen to be another Na­bucadnezer, whose heart is alienate from the true God.

But for the loue of our deare maister ChristThe [...]ce of our deliuery in Christ. Iesus, let not his threates terifie vs: for although he proudly say, who can deliuer you out of mine [Page 65] handes? Let vs assure our selues that he that deli­uered the children of Israell out of the handes of Pharaoh shall deliuer vs from the handes of this tyrant of Rome & his adherentes, for experience of gods protection, teacheth vs to beleeue that their power is vaine & friuolous. Let them mur­mure & mutter, let them fret and fume, let them stirre the coales of their malice against vs, so far as God will permit, and in the time of greatest perill he shall worke for vs as hee did for Ioshua, before whose face he threwe downe the mightie citie Iericho without shot of bullet, or stroke ofIericho throvven dovvne with the breath of Gods mouth. sworde, so (no doubt) his power is able to deale with all our mightiest aduersaries, yea euen with that Nabucadnezer & al his mightie multitudes, he shal euen with the breath of his mouth, stir those coales into a flame which nowe they haue inkin­deled against vs, to scorch vp and consume euen the chiefe doers of his hoast: as he did the exe­cutioners of the three men in the hoat ouen. And let vs in the faith and feare of our goodGod vvill turne the flame of these conspiracies, to consum [...] the actors thereof. God assuredly perswade our selues, that of his mercies, and for his owne glories sake, hee will bring the due desert, and deserued rewarde vp­on them all, as he hath begunne with some that laye secrete waite and by conspiracies seeke to bring, not onely the heade, but manie the chie­fest proppes of our quiet estate, to an vntimelyLet vs caste avvay the cords of con­spirators frō v s. ende, and our Countrey into a common cala­mitie. And therefore let vs speedely, willingly, and frankely caste awaye their cordes from vs, [Page 66] their cordes of falsehoode, flatterie, and tyran­nie, where with they endeuour to binde vs vnto their willes. Let vs not be wonne by their allure­inents, nor feare their forces domesticall or for­raine, for God that dwelleth in the heauens, shal laugh them to scorne and they that feare his name shall haue them in derision, he shall breake their bowes in peeces, gnappe their speares inPs. 2. 3. sunder, and make their artylerie their munition, and other their martiall prouisions, scurges and roddes to correct themselues: for although hee haue a long time winked at their wantonnesse, & wylinesse: and they haue flattered themselues nianye yeares in a foolish hope, and a diuelish desire of ouerthrowing the truth, and the chiefe protectors thereof, here in earth, let vs assure our selues that hee will not haue his glorie de­faced, nor permit his owne power to come in­to sclaunder, but by a fewe of his true and faith­full seruantes will showe himselfe able to van­quish the greatest multitudes of his aduersaries.How we must encourage out selues in God. And although he be able to confounde them e­uen with the breath of his mouth: yet will hee showe his power, extending ayde vnto his ser­uauntes, taking the defence of his trueth in hande: the aduersaries where of he sometimes consoundeth euen with the hands of his aduer­saries risin [...] one against another.

He suffered Shenacheryb King of the Assyri­ans2. Kin 1 [...] ▪ 13 The pro [...]de vaunts of Se­nacharib. a longe time to flatter himselfe and to boaste and bragge of his mightie multitudes [Page 67] and his huge hoaste of mightie menne, who did in the brauerie of his owne conceite, make open proclamation (as it were) agaynst the liuing God, the God of trueth, blaspheminge and sayinge: knowe yee not howe, and what I, and my Fathers haue doone in other Coun­tryes, howe wee haue conquered manie Na­tions, raunsacked Cities, and brought their peo­ple into great subiection, bondage, and serui­tude? Why doeth Hesekyah then perswade you to trust in anie other but in mee? and to feare anie besides mee? For were the Gods of o­ther landes of force to withstande my multi­tudes, the power of my mightie men of warre, and to deliuer the people out of my handes? Noe more shall yee bee able to stande before mee. And therefore, yeelde your obedience and loyaltie to mee, and my ministers, or else I will deale in the like measure with you. Here are great and glorious▪ wordes, heere are terri­ble and sharpe speeches, thundering as he would haue throwen downe heauenlye Ierusalem, and haue plucked the King of Kinges out of his throne.

And I praye let vs a little compare the haw­tie bragges of the Romish Shenacheryb, with thisA compari­son between Senach. k. of Assiria, and the Pope. Assyrian Kinge: and by the successe of the one coniecture of the ende of the other. The ittera­tion or repetition of the bragges, boastings, and thundering vants of Senacheryb of Rome is need­lesse, being so plainely euery where noted, and [Page 68] especially from the sea of Rome, from Spaine, Fraunce, and such like hoat and furious Coun­tryes where the sunne of perdition shineth. But as this Assyrian Shenacheryb, and his Fathers by Gods permission, preuayled a while in oppres­sing manie Countryes, Cities, and people: Yet at the length, when hee thought himselfe sure of the praye and spoyle of Ierusalem, suddenlieThe spoile & ouerthrovve of Senache­ribs army. came the power of him who neuer fayleth the faithful, and destroyed all the valiant men, Prin­ces and Captaines, euen his whole armie, to the number of one hundred fourescore and fiue thousande men. And this great boasting tyrant himselfe, flying vnto Niniuie and in the temple of his Idols, as a iust rewarde for his arrogancie,The death of Senach. k. of Assiria. pryde, and blasphemie, Adramelech and Sha­razar his owne sonnes slewe him with a sworde: Euen so althoughe that Shenacheryb of Rome and his predecessors haue these manie yeares preuayled, with force and falshoode bewitching the heartes of manie Kinges, Countryes, Na­tions, Cities and people, saying: who is the Lorde? am not I hee, that haue brought so ma­nie into my subiection, seruitude, and bon­dage? Why doth then Hesekyah of Englande per­swade her people to trust in anye besides mee?The vaunts of Romish Senacherib. for as I haue doone to Spayne, to Fraunce, and diuerse other Countryes, Cities, and people,England a pricke in the popes eye, & therefore he threatueth it. so will I doe vnto Englande, I will bring them into their woonted obedience vnto my decrees, or else will I send my multitudes and my migh­tie [Page 69] men, to beseege their Cities, and to vanquish their people, in such sorte as they shall not es­cape.

Here is much a doe, heere are great wordes, a fryuolous ostentation of a mortall man, theThe Popes holinesse. enemie of God, a member of Sathan, friende to no good man, a poyson to euerie Christian soule, that is defiled with his enchauntmentes, the pitch of perdition, which who so toucheth is polluted with a deadly filth, can hee not looke into the course and confusion of this As­syrian King, and sette him as a mirror or glasse to beholde his owne proceedinges: and what shall become of him without his vnfeyned con­uertion.

And cannot his adherentes call to minde theA mirror for the Roma­nists. ende of this Assyrian armie: surelie, (were they not besotted with the confidence in their owne power and strengthes) they woulde call it to minde and tremble for feare, that their successe in the seruice of suche a mayster, cannot bee good, nor take a salutarie ende. Wherefore with diligence in the feare and reuerence of the mightie GOD of heauen, let vs eschewe their faction, and marche vnder the banner of Christes trueth, assuring our selues, that as the Lorde with the breath of his mouth, ouercame so mightie a multitude, of the Assyrians, thyr­sting for the spoyle of Ierusalem. And as he ray­sed such as discended from the loynes of that [Page 70] Assyrian King to kill him for his tyrannye and pryde. So is hee able to resist or confounde the multitudes of our enemies, the enemyes of the trueth, abroade and at home.

And further, if with patience wee wayte his good pleasure he shall rayse vp such as haue dis­cended of the bowels of the Romish Shenacheryb God is [...]l [...] to [...] [...] [...] from the popes ovvne [...] to con [...]ūd him. to turne euen their forces, and their powers a­gainst him in the iudgement of GOD to con­founde him. It is not in vayne that our merci­full God commaundeth his children to call vp­pon him in the daye of trouble, and hee will heare them, and releeue them, against whatso­euer aduersaries: for hee hath no respecte of persons, but he that walketh in the trueth and worketh righteousnesse is accepted with him, he bringeth the proude boasting of the arrogant to howling and weeping, and exalteth such as are lowly in him.

There was no comparison betweene great G [...]lyah and little Dauid to the eyes of those thatThe vn [...]kli­hoo [...] o [...] [...] to [...]l Go [...]. sawe them both march towardes the combate. For naturall reason coulde not haue iudged the victorie to go with Dauid for that, that in respect of his stature & person, there was no more equa­litie than betweene a little mouse and a great E­lephant, and as their persons & strengthes were farre vnlike, so were their weapons and exter­nall instrumentes of warre, for the strong man had farre the greater oddes, for hee was armed [Page 71] for the purpose with speare and shielde, and poore Dauid was naked, onely a slinge in his hande, wherewith (yet such was Gods proui­dence) with a stone hee killed this huge andGods proui­dence against naturall rea­son. mightie monster, who vaunting of his owne strength, blasphemed the God of heauen, in whose myraculous death, the power of GOD and his hatred against manns trust and confi­dence in the strength of flesh and bloud, was sho­wed: to the comfort of the godly, and confusion of the wicked.

This and such like examples are written for our learning, that wee through the assurance of our defence in our Captaine Christ, should notThe glory of the Pope. feare the force of our boasting aduersaries the strength and hautie courage of the graund cap­taine of the Romish Philistines, who challengeth all men that seeme to take their defence in God, glorying and boasting in his manie Countryes, stronge and fencible Cityes, and manye mul­titudes of people, that are in subiection vnder him.Ios. [...]. [...], and the strength thereof.

Iericho, was a mightie and stronge Citye, the walles whereof seemed inuincible, beeing moste stronglie furnished with manie menne and munition▪ wherein they gloried, boasted, and sette themselues alofte in their owne con­ceite, as thou [...] no power had beene able to o­uerthrowe th [...]: But God, who wincketh not at such arrogancie, nor suffereth such re­bellious people, to goe vnpunished, neyther [Page 72] their Cities to stande in such contempt of him (puffed vp with the pride of their own strength) directed Ioshua the Captaine of the Israelites howe and in what manner hee shoulde deale for the ouerthrowe and subuersion thereof. And because hee would haue his power to bee seene, and his mightie arme to haue the praise, and not the strength of Ioshuas armie, least hee shoulde haue bragged and boasted as did Pha­raoh, Nabucadnezer, Senacheryb, and suche like mightie Princes, who attributed the prayse of their successe and victories, vnto their owne strength and multitudes: hee willed Ioshua to carrie the Arke of the Lorde, seauen times about the Citie, with the sounde of seauen trumpettes, and a great shoute of the armie, whereat (with­outThe ouer­throvv of Iericho. more a doe) without the shedding of one droppe of bloude of Ioshuas companye, the walles of the Citie fell flatte to the grounde, In­so much as Ioshua with his armie entered, put the people to the sworde, and burned the Citie with fire.

Euen so did he worke for Gydeon and his smallIud. [...]. 15. A huge com­pany o [...] Ma­d [...]ouer­come by Gi­deon and a [...] number of [...] men. companie, to the ouerthrowe of the Madianites, what a mightie GOD is this, whose power is such and so great, that hee worketh so farre be­yonde all naturall expectation, yea against all possibilitie, by worldely reason, to the confusi­on of such as rise vp against his Church, against his Christ and Christian?

And therefore although wee see Romish Ie­richo, [Page 73] which consisteth of manye Cities, which is the mother of manye daughters, although shee tryumph as inuincible, although shee sitteReu. 18. 7. as a Queene and saye, I shall be no widow, nei­ther shall I bee touched with any sorrow: Let vs not doubt but the breath of Gods owne mouthThe meane to ouerthrow Romish Ie­richo. shall ouerthrow her: The Arke of the Lorde, the gospell of his truth beeing carryed in countries rounde about her, and the trumpets of Gods messengers sounding the same, and the heartye prayses of the armye of Christians beeing shou­ted vnto the heauens, shall bring that to passe which S. Iohn prophesieth, namely that the ioyfulReu. 18. 2. tidinges of the fal of Romish Iericho, and her vt­ter ruine vnto Ioshuas armye, namely to the con­gregation of the faithfull in Christ. It is fallen it is fallen, Babylon that great City, the glory of the Romishe queene, the pride of Iericho is come toEsa. 21. 9 confusion. This no doubt by the finger of God shall be brought to passe, although they seeme to build their strength neuer so mightely.

The people about an hundred and thirtie yeares after the floud greatly increased, & theirGen. 11. 4. multitude increasing to an infinite number, be­ganne to be proud and arrogant, insomuch that as they deuised the meanes (in their owne con­ceipts) to extoll their glorye vnto the heauens, and therefore endeuoured to erect a tower, the height whereof should reach vnto the skies, their enterprise thus begunne, they proceeded to per­fourme it according to their owne imagina­tions, [Page 74] wherein their pride so increased, and their hearts asspired against the God of heauen, who beholding the secreats thereof, and their weake and rebellious intent, in that they coulde not content them-selues to enioye the libertie and commodities of the earth, and their liues at hisGod throvv­eth downe aspiring mindes. handes, but would aspire to make themselues e­quall with him, and as it were his fellow neigh­bours euen in the cloudes, where they preten­ded to haue their habitations neare vnto his seate of Maiestie in heauen, as they imagined, quickly cut them short, and vsed a speedy confu­sion of their follye: namely confounded theirThe confusiō of [...]ongues. language in suche sort as one coulde not vnder­stand the other.

Surely this example of mans pride and their suddaine confusion by the iudgements of God, is worthy to be noted. The multitude of theseThe multitud of Nimrods company. men, namelie Nimrod and his companye were great, insomuch as if God should haue dealt ac­cording to the sence of humaine reason, as these men now do in their multitudes, what course should God haue taken, considering that (as be­fore the sloud) so now they all ioyned themselues togeather to become rebels against him? But as his wisedome is alwayes vnsearcheable, and his power infinite, and all to bring all thinges to passe without the ayde of man, he vsed this onely meane to stop their deuise, namely to con­founde their language whereby their worke ceased, they were scattered, and their enterprise [Page 75] came to none effect.

By this moste worthye example we maye see how God abhorreth those aspiring heartes thatGod detest­eth the deui­ses of those that couet to climbe in­to heauen by their ovvne deserts. couet to clymbe vp into heauen by the tower of their owne deuises. What a touchstone is this to trie the glitteringe showe of Nimrod of Rome and his adherents to bee but copper, who as we see indeuoureth to erect a tower, not of bricke and morter, but of their owne merites, whereby they will ascende and set themselues euen side by side with Christe himselfe in the kingdome of heauen.

And I praye what is this but to call Christ downe from heauen, to confounde their lan­guages, and to shewe them plainelie that their buildinge shall neuer take effect, nor bee ac­complished: Howe is it come alreadye to passe amonge these builders? How manye areThe confusiō of the lan­guage that the Roma­nists vse. there that can vnderstande the language of their worke-men? Is it not in Latine, a language far from the vnderstandinge of the moste. For if the builders of this detestable worke shoulde callThe difficult agreeing of the builders and labou­rers or serui­tors of the Romishe tower. Aho [...]chpotch o [...] inuentions instead of the sincere reli­g [...]. for the bricke of true worship of GOD in his toong, their poore seruitors bringe foorth the stubble of idolatrye, the confusion whereof we see, in that these builders euen in the iudge­mentes of GOD haue patched, peeced, and made a hotchpotch thereof, in suche sort as the buylding of that tower, which is founded vp­pon the merites of Christe aboue, wherein we must be saued, is meerelye neglected and re­iected [Page 76] amongest them. And therefore it behoo­ueth euerye true christian, to come out from a­mong them, to forsake their company, and not to set to our handes to the gathering of stubble, to make their bricke, nor slime for their morter.The counter­fait bricke & morter of the Romanists. For such is their bastardly dealing, that in steede of the pure straw of the word of God, wherwith they shoulde make the bricke of a christian con­uersation, they take the stubble of their owne traditions, and in place of the pure morter of the spirite of God, they vse the slyme of their owne carnall wisedome, wherewith they build this tower of their glorye, wherein they so brag and boaste, as though by the same tower they could themselues ascend into heauen, and keepe others with the force of their manye builders from ascending to God by Christ. Their inuen­tions are euill, their pride odious, and their folly filthy in the sight of God. And yet say they we will preuaile, we will perfourme our enterprise,The resolutiō in building the tower of vvilfull re­bellion a­gainst the death of Christ. accomplishe our deuice, for our multitude is great, & therfore who can withstande our force? But we haue plentifully seene the mighty works of the Lorde for the confusion of his aduersa­ries, and the comfort of those that delight in his saluation.

Yet let vs a little further call into our mindes, and for the comfort of our consciences, and en­couragement of our heartes, consider his migh­tye potection and prouident care he hath of his children.

[Page 77] Dauid was moste cruellye persecuted, and his1. Sam. 13. The trouble [...] of Dauid by Saule▪ life a long time, and by many meanes sought for to be taken away by Saule, a mighty king and his mighty multitudes. Yet such was the patience of Dauid, that when he had fit opportunitie to haue killed Saule, he woulde not, but rather refer­ring his case vnto the prouidence of God, onely cut off the lap of Saules garment and departed, and at another time tooke his speare, and a cup of oyle.

Saules tirannye still raging so far that he com­maunded1. Sam. 24. 4. Ionathan his owne sonne and seruants to kill Dauid. But the Lord mooued the heart of1. Sa. 19. 1. Ionathan to fauor Dauid, yet such was the cruel­tie of Saule that Dauid was forced to flie into the wildernes of Zyphe, and being in great distresse, and in such a strait, that he saw in natural iudge­ment no possibilitie to escape the handes of hisDauids ex­treme dis­tresse and his deliuery by the proui­dence of god aduersaries, he was by the gratious prouidence of God mightely defended. For in Saules hottest pursuite after Dauids life, there came a messen­ger vnto Saule that informed him that the Phili­stines had inuaded his lande, at which newes he was forced to leaue Dauid, and with speede with all his host to returne home to defend his owne realme. This is duely to be noted and his migh­ty prouidence of God in thus miraculously de­fending Dauid, is to be applied vnto euery chri­stian in his distresse and persecution, and a god­ly instruction for our deare Soueraigne, that al­though Saule of Rome and his adherents wayte [Page 78] for the life of her highnes, that yet there be ma­nie Ionathans that haue made couenaunt with her, to ayde her and assist her as men mooued euen with the zeale of the Lordes house, and loue of her maiesties vertues, yea the Lord him­selfe is her protection, who we see hath not one­ly cut off the lap of Saules garment, but hath ta­ken awaye his speare, namelie his ministers and cursed conspiratours against her, by whome he hoped with a speare to haue dispoyled her high­nesse of her life, and vs of our quiet estate. ButThe greatest foe of our felicity is partly vnar­med. God be thanked he is partly vnarmed, and ther­fore let vs bee patient and suffer him to rage a while, and at the length no doubt shee shall take awaye the cup of oyle which is his comfort, namely all his flattering and deceitfull compli­ces, his glorye and renowne, his power and au­thoritie, notwithstandinge the manie threatned inuasions by forraine forces, and secreat con­spiracies at home, when they are in the prime of their pride, when their tyrannie is moste sharpe and cruell, when their shippinges are prepared, their armies and their multitudes at the moste,VVhen our aduersaries are in the prime of their hope they sh [...]l [...]li [...] back [...]t, & be dis [...] and when they gape widest to swallow vp Dauid, the poore Christians in England and elswhere, God will preuent them with some inuasions of their own terretories at home, and thereby giue occasion to Saule and his mightye men, to re­tourne to defende themselues at home, yea the mighty monacke of Spaine that seemeth to rule but is ruled, who as it hath beene confessed by [Page 79] the late conspirators, will spende his whole king­dome, but will bring Englande to his purpose, and conforme to the antient Romaine religion, euen he and all his adherents, ministers of Saule, Psal. 2. of Rome shall bee deceiued, God is on our side who is a sure defence in the due time of neede, his ayde commeth when mens cases are despe­rate, he helpeth past hope, and maketh the coun­sailes, attemptes and pollicies, the might and multitude of the aduersaries of his truth to beeGod cannot abide any practises a­gainst his church. vaine and of none effect, yea he laugheth them to scorne, he cannot abyde their conspiracies a­gainst Christ and his church, although they pro­sper & are glorious in the eie of man for a time, yet (if we note the endes of them) we shall haue good occasion to saye as Dauid of the wicked said. I looked, and behold although they were e­uenPsal. 73. 3. now flourishing as greene bay trees, they are suddaynlye consumed, and their place is not to be found▪ The same prophet saith that he stoode in admiration, and euen fretted to see the prospe­rity of the wicked. And surely it is in these dayesIt is admira­ble to see the prosperi­ty of the wicked. very admirable to see the prosperitye, the glori­ous estate and braue outward shew of those that set their mouthes againste heauen, namelye that blaspheme God, & slander his power, in tying it vnto the multitude, and contemn other men, as vile & weake in respect of them-selues, that con­demne all men, and iustifie themselues, thirsting after bloud, and yet saye we are they that will preuaile, who is Lorde ouer vs?

[Page 80]But beholde God setteth them in slipperyeThe vvicked namely con­spirators are in slippery places. places, he casteth them downe, bringeth them to desolation, destroyeth them suddenly, and they in their counsels come to a shamefull and feare­full ende.

Thus haue we seene with our eyes in our late conspirators, of whome some of them and theyPs. 7 [...]. 18. 19. not the leaste, haue with this persecutinge Saule beene hangmen and butchers vnto themselues. God destroyeth all them that withdraw them­selues1. Sa. 31. 4. Psal. 73. 27. God is good vnto the godly. from him and goe a whoring after strange Gods, but is good vnto Israell, euen to suche as are of a cleare and a pure heart. And therefore let vs bee assured that although there be manye Saules against one Dauid, many IeZabels againste one Elias, God will not suffer suche as are godly in deed, christians in deed, feruent, zealous, and not duke warme hypocrites or newters to be o­uer thrown of thē, but will make away for them to escape, as he did for his seruant Dauid, euen when their state is most daungerous.

Poore Daniell was in a meruailous distresse, inDan. 6. 12. a desperate estate in the iudgment of man, when he for the seruice which he did to the true God, was (by a sinister decree made and signed by Da­rius, through a generall conspiracie of wicked men) caste into the Lions denne, whome the mighty hand of the God whome he serued suffi­cientlye protected, shutting the Lions mouthes so that they could not hurt him. But when thoseThe revvard of conspira­tors. were cast into the den that conspired his death, [Page 81] they were rent in peeces ere they came to the ground of the den.

This Daniell was likewise hardlye beset with manye enemies, for that he in zeale of GodsDaniel. 14. Daniel hard­ly beset for reprehending idolatry. truth reprehended Cyrus king of Persia, for per­mitting and committing suche idolatrye vnto a filthy monster Bell the idoll, of whome such was the opinion of the king and the people that they worshipped it as God, the whole multitude fell downe before it. But Daniell resisting them to their faces sayd, this that yee worship is an idollThe boldnes of Daniell in the zeale of gods truth. and no God: and when the kinge hearde that, he seemed wroth, and to maintaine this Dragon to be a God, he framed his argument saying, doest thou thinke it to bee no God, beholde he eateth and drinketh, and therefore doest thou speake blasphemie against our God, he eateth an hun­dred gallons of fine flowre, and forty sheepe, andA gluttonou [...] God. drinketh sixe great pots of wine euery day, here was a gluttonous God. But beholde the poore idoll was slandered and deceiued, for the priests, their wiues and children deuoured all this pro­uision secreatlye. These were like vnto our late abbey lubbers, who deuoured that in loiteringe lasines, which the painfull labourers should liue by. But poore Daniell beeing sharply reprooued not onely at the handes of the king, but threat­ned by the multitude not fearing their force, hauing his assured confidence in the help of the liuing God, and seeking to maintaine his glorye and deface superstition & idolatrye, vndertooke [Page 82] the destruction of this false God, without swoord or staffe, which he by his power, whose hande is alwayes ready to assist his seruaunts, and to con­foundThe confusiō of an imaginatiue God. his aduersaries presently performed; and brake it all in peeces, confounded it, and shewed it in it likenes, namely to be a false and counter­feyt image, and (in deed) no God. Whereat the whole multitude of the Babylonians raged not onely against Daniell, but also against the king himselfe, for that hee permitted Daniell to take this enterprise in hand: The king being timorous and more fearing the force of the multitude, then seeking the glory of the liuing God, deliue­red poore Daniell into their handes, who threw him violentlye into the Lions den to be deuou­red. But such was the omnipotent power of God ouer these greedy and rauenous beastes, which Daniels aduersaries of purpose kept hungry and without meat to make their stomaches so much the more greedy of the bloud of this seruant of the true GOD, who in suche sort stopped their mouthes that they hurt not Daniell at all. WhatAmiraculous vvorke of God to stop rauening ly­ons mouthes. a most louing God, what a mighty and merciful iudge of our distresse doth he shew himselfe? for this is also written for our learning, to shew that he neuer saileth the faythfull, but helpeth them in due time of need. And that we should not fear the great and mighty multitudes of Romish Ba­bylonians, that endeuor to bring vs into the denGod neuer saileth the faithfull. of their deuouring Lions, their spanish inquisi­tion, and such like deepe deuoring gulphes, that [Page 83] they haue deuised to ouerthrow (if they coulde) euery true Daniell, by persecutions, torturs, and the feare of death.

Now for asmuch as we haue seene the migh­tyThe conclusi­on. workes of the Lorde in great aboundance to­wards the deliuery of those that put their vnfey­ned confidence in his protection, vsinge some­tymes worldly meanes, sometimes his power a­gainst worldly meanes, and sometimes without worldly meanes, to allure his people in their di­stres to come vnto him, & for their encourage­ment hath made waies for their safety, when na­turall reason coulde not deuise or imagine theGod by manie means shovveth himselfe helpfull to his. meane to escape, and hath by few of his seruants ouerthrown & vanquished great multitudes of his aduersaries pulled downe the mighty by the hand of the weak, and exalted the weake against the expectation of the mightye. Let vs therefore duely applye all these his mighty workes to our instruction, & according vnto the time set them before our eles, as a mirror or glasse to see the e­state of the enimies of God, their slippery stan­dings and weake holds, and the sure refuge, the buckler which the righteous haue in the mighty hand of God. The christiās we see are inuironedChristians a [...] enuironed with many snares. with manye perillous snares of the enimies of God: their state in naturall reason standeth dan­gerous, but the Lord deliuereth them out of all. And therfore let vs assure our selues of the ayde of him that hath not (as we see) failed those that truly and constantly professed his name. [Page 84] And as he hath beene neare vnto them, so will he be vnto vs, if with pure heartes and constaunt mindes we perseuer and continue (not as hypo­crites,God vvilbee neere vnto vs, if vve bee neere vnto him with sin­glenesse of heart and not as hipocrites. neither as suche as beare the name onelye of Christians but) very christians, not in name so much, but that our conuersations may bee aun­swerable therunto to the vttermost, to the prai­ses of God, and our saluation in Christ.

CHAP. 3.

A comfortable conclusion, to stirre vp such as couet to be called Christians, to bee inwardly the same, that they doe outwardly professe to be, considering that it is not the name, but the pure life in Christe that maketh a Christian.

THE bishop of Rome and his ad­herentes doe perswade all men to ioyne with them in the Religion whiche they holde Catholique, which the holy Ghost reproouethThe holy Ghost repro­ueth the ro­mish religion and sheweth it to be meere idolatry, and altoge­ther repugnant against the truth. They say and affirme it to be true, pure, and the sounde religi­on, the way that leadeth vnto Christe, and salua­tion in him. But the trueth findeth that the foundation thereof is layde vppon traditions and inuentions, and not vpon the rocke Christe Iesus, frō whose example, whoso dissenteth can­not (though in name) yet not in deed) become a perfect Christian, or true catholike whatsoeuer [Page 85] great shewes of deuotion, workes of charitie, abstinence, prayers, or other outwarde ceremo­nies, these fayned and false foxes, these hidden and cloaked Catholiques can, or do glory of, al­though they could deriue the same from the be­ginning of the worlde, from the wise, from the studious and learned, from the mighty or grea­test multitudes of the whole worlde, and fromTrue religion is not grun­ded in the hart by the vvill or power of man. a generall president. For the truth whereupon the conuersation of euerye Christian is to bee grounded, is setled in the heart of none, by the power, the will, the wisedome, or inuentions of man, neither can it bee increased or bettered by the pollicie of anie, nor sufficientlye protected or mainteined by the authoritie of princes, but where first the spirit of GOD hath framed the foundation. By the meere workinge whereof, itThe spirit of God the tryer of true religion. is apprehended followed, imbraced, and duelye mainteined, and by it the spirite of errour and falshood, and counterfeyt christianitie is reuea­led, controuled, suppressed, and confounded, and so consequentlye the perfect trueth confir­med and allowed. Besides which truth who so endeuoureth to establishe any doctrine, carry it neuer so fayre and glorious a shewe of good in­tent is a rebell to the death of Christe, a deceiuer of the people, a blinde guyde, who togeather with those that he guydeth shall fall into the pit and puddell of desperate ignoraunce, and so consequently into the lake of perdition. And therefore let not the fayre shew of these coun­terfeyt [Page 86] christians, cloaked Catholiques, the crue of the cursed sect of Iugling Iesuites, shauen Se­minaries, and perdicious priestes betraye vs, or allure vs to their profession, the fruites whereof beeing so ripe that they fall from the tree of theThe fruits of papistry, are fair without & soule with in. Romish sea, rotten within and faire without, ha­uing hony in their lips, & gall in their hearts, the poyson of aspes, the loue of Iudas, the zeale of Caine appeareth in their practizes, they are no christians, why then shoulde we giue them the name of Catholiques? They seeke bloude, they thirste for the death of christians, they are murtherers, they are not worthye the name of men, they are Vipers, they couet to eat out the very bowelles of their mother that bare them, the common weale that fostered them, and woulde fill the lande wherein they were fosteredThe description of Romish catholickes. with the bloud of thē, by whose protection they haue liued, and by whose ayde they haue beene mainteyned, they are no subiects, they are tray­tors and rebels, their name of Catholiques we see maketh not their calling sure, but the name shallTheir name shall be a witnes▪ against them. be a witnes against them, when the vaile of their outwarde shew, shall be plucked awaye, and the inward intent of their hearts appeare.

But he that will be a true christian in deede, must cast away all dissimulation, all hipocrisie, all malice, all desire of bloud, all consent of re­bellion, treason, enuie and idolatrie, and put on not onely the outwarde habite, but the inwarde zeale of godlinesse, as loue, faith, obedience, and [Page 87] true and vnfeyned subiection to GOD and his annoynted of the earth.

But alas too many are the dissembling chri­stians of these daies: I woulde it were not true, for there hath beene manifest proofe of the can­cred hearts of such as outwardly appeared duti­full subiects, whose practizes are so new, that the heartes of all true christians are yet bleeding toCancred harts vnder the outvvard showe of due tifull subiects consider it.

But now vpon this manifest triall of their treacherie, let euen the name of the counterfeyt Catholiques, be euen as a lesson to warne vs by their rebellions to become good subiectes, by their fals endeuor to stand, by their harmes seek to be warie and wise in Christ.

Constantius the Emperour intendinge on aThe policy of Constanti­us in trying the hearts of his seruaunts. time to trie the hearts of▪ those that were about his court whether they were in deede christians or idolaters, whereby he might the better disci­pher and iudge of their loue and faithfull obe­dience towards him, knowing that they that ap­peared the true seruants of God, woulde be most faithfull vnto him, and the other the more wa­relyThe faithfull seruaunts of God are most true subiectes to their prin­ces. to be auoyded, vsed this pollicy (when hipo­crisie and feyned subiection was not (as now it is dispensed with) he called togeather all his ser­uants and officers, feyning himselfe to chose out such as would do sacrifice to diuels, who should onelye remaine in the court, & execute the offi­ces there, and they that refused should be expul­sed. Whervpon the courtiers deuided them into [Page 88] companies, & some of them shewed themselues very ready to fulfill the kinges will, and proffered to do sacrifice to diuels, others constauntly and boldly refused to doe it. The Emperour seeing the rebellion of some of them against God, and the faithfull obedience of the other, he foorth­with expelled these sacrifices out of his Court, and reteyned the other, affirming that they one­lyVVho they be that are fittest to at­tend vpon a prince. were fit to be about a prince. And therefore from thence foorth he accepted those his moste trustie counsailors and defendors of his person and Empire, saying that such were more worthy to be had in estimation, and to be accompted ofFaithfull sub­ [...]e [...] as deare as the beste treasure. then the substaunce that he had in his treasurie. Thus we may note that euery one that sheweth outwarde loyaltie vnto a prince, is no more a true subiect by the onelye outwarde shew with­out the inwarde loue of God, then he is to bee accompted a true Christian, which in outwarde ceremonies appeareth a Catholike & in inwarde affection declyneth from Christe and his truth.A good prose of faithful hearts about her maiesty▪ But God be thanked there hath beene sufficient proofe of perfect heartes neare her maiestie in these late daungers, and such heartes as will not doe sacrifice to the Diuell of Rome, nor giue consent vnto the tolleration thereof in others: But with the swoorde of their authoritye ende­uor to cut off both the causers and effectors, the tree and the braunches of these conspiracies, and (no doubt) if we shew our selues true christians in deede, & not key cold or newters, but zealous [Page 89] in the defence of Gods truth, and stand assistan according to our bounden dueties, as true sub­iectes to her Maiestie in heartes and handes, We shall see these Romish Babylonians, to cry out, la­mentReu. 18. 10. The dolefull song of the ruine of Ro­mishe Baby­lon. and mourne, as they alreadie begunne to sing this dolefull song: Heu, heu vrbs illa magna Babylon, vrbs illa potens, &c. Alas, alas that great citie the mighty citie Babylon, that was so beau­tifully dected and finely clothed, in lynnen, pur­ple and scarlet guilded with golde, and beautifi­ed with pearles and precious stones, whose de­struction draweth neere. But these that thus cry out and lament her ruyne, stande a farre off for feare of her torment, the kinges of the earth shall bewayle the fall of this great and glorious Citie, with whome they haue committed forni­cation, and played the harlottes and taken theirThe estate of romish mer­chaunts namely buiers and sellers of soules, in the day of their ruine. delight and pleasures in her. Then will her Mar­chants, her spirituall buyers and sellers of soules, her Seminaries, her Priests, and Iesuytes, and such like companions, who liued by the whoredome of this great whore of Babylon the Pope, for losse of their accustomed rewardes and wonted gayne, howle and weepe, and for their punish­ments at hand, shall stand desperate of all helpe. This shall be the estate of those that to some seeme nowe verie perfect Catholikes, who haue secretely withdrawen men from their true obe­dience to Princes lawefully established, and haue mooued the spouse of Christe to commit spiri­tuall fornication with the man of Rome, and of [Page 90] such as will not nowe suffer wholsome doctrine, but hauing their eares itching get them teachers after their owne luste, turning their eares from [...] Tim. 4. the truth, giuing heede vnto fables, vnto spirits of error, and doctrines of Diuelles, hardening their hearts through blindnes, of whom Christ himselfe speaketh saying: The hearts of the peo­ple are waxed fat, and their eares are dull of hea­ring,Christ pro­phecied of these daies. Mat. 13. & with their eyes haue they wincked least they should see with their eyes, heare with their eares, and vnderstande with their hearts, and so returne, that they might be saued. What a daun­gerous thing therfore is this obstinate blindnes, and blinde obstinacie? wilfull ignorance, & de­sperate wilfulnesse? and yet woulde these men be accompted Catholiques and Christians. But such crookednes and peruersenesse caused Iere­mie to crye out and say, It is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not heare the lawe of the Lord: but say vnto the seers, see not,Esai. 30. and to the Prophetes, prophecie not vnto the people the trueth, but speake flattering wordes vnto them, prophecie errors, go out of the way, forsake the right path, cause the holy one of Is­raell to cease from vs. Is not this the manner ofSimple men tyed to the romish reli­gion with cords of ig­norance these men to keepe such frō the truth which are tyed to their vsurped authoritie, with the cordes of obstinate blindnes? which was the cause that in the dais of Christ himself, the multitude cried out to crucifie him, & yet thought they did wel: & Christ praied his father to forgiue thē saying, [Page 61] they knowe not what they doe. But it is now o­therwiseDifference betvvene the ignorance of the Iewes in the daies of Christ, and these of this present vvil­full ignorāce with vs, for we haue the trueth before vs, we may read it, we haue the truth preched, we may heare it, we haue it reuealed, we may vnder­stande it, and therefore the neglecting thereof, is now inexcusable, and the Lord will not suffer his truth now to be darkened with feyned holines.

And therefore let vs returne vnto our selues, & enter into cōsideration of our own cōuersationsVVee muste call our selu [...] to an accoūt. whether they be framed according to the trueth which we haue learned. We are fruitfully & most plentifully fed with the bread of life the gospell of Christ, beyond al other Nations of the world, let vs not be therfore glorious in our words on­ly, or in our outward actiōs, expecting the praise of mē, but let vs be pure in hart, obediēt in soule, & mind, to God that searcheth the raynes, and entrals thereof, and accepteth not, of those that can but brag and say, we haue the Gospell, wee haue the Gospell, and bringe not foorth the fruites of the Gospell. It was not enough forThe title of a christian no [...] enough vvithout the deedes. the Iewishe Priestes, to crye out, the temple of God▪ the temple of GOD, as though the bare title of the temple maketh it the true temple of God, or the name of a Christian, a member of Christ, or the title of a Protestant (wherof some doe boast) a man in deede that protesteth in life and inward zeale, that he is a true Christian. The Papists cry out we are catholiques, we are catho­liques,The bragge [...] of romish ca­tholicks we are of the Church, for looke vpon our external works of charity, & actions of deuotiō, [Page 92] we fast, we praye, wee giue almes, we pinch our bodies, we scurge our selues, wee are they that shall ascende vnto the holy hill. But alas howeGood works ill done. far these things are of thēselues from that which God requireth, he himself declareth saying, such as haue pure heartes and cleane handes, such as are inwardly zealous togither with the outwardVVho they be that shhall ascend into heauen. testimonies of their godly life, such shall inherite heauen. And therefore there may bee manie wolues in lambes skinnes, many deuils vnder the habite of Pharazaicall deuotion, and therefore not in wordes or outwarde behauiour only stan­deth the perfect estate of a Christian, but euen in the sinceritie and perfect purenesse of the heart, depending in faith vppon the merits of Christ: The outward action is the messenger of the hart, it is a witnesse of the minde, but not at all times a like, for the outwarde kysse of Iudas, was out­wardlyVVords and on [...]vvarde [...]hovves oftē de ceaue. a token of loue, and yet it proceeded of an heart full of gall and bitternesse, of deceyte and murther, his words of all hayle master came as if his lippes had testified obedience to his ma­ster, but the poyson of Aspys was vnder his tong. The muncke of Swynsted that poysoned Kinge Iohn, came with his poysoned potion, with the sweete words of wassayle my Leige, and inward­ly pretended the death of the King, & are there not in these dayes manie that can couer their poysoned practises with the outward show of all hayle Madam, and God saue your Maiestie, and such like faire words that come frō a poysonsom [Page 97] stomach? doth not counterfeite deuation couerCounterfait deuotion co­uereth diue­lish deuise [...] many diuelish deuises? Is not sometimes duti­full obedience made the cloke for wilfull rebel­lion, and diligent attendance made the collourParries out­vvard atten­dance a cloke for treason. of conspiracie? Looke vpon Parrie & his practi­ses, and there is a proofe of these pollicies. Man seeth not the heartes of men, but God findeth them out in their secrete counsailes, he bewray­eth some to be traytors, that make outward show of true subiectes. And therefore let no man de­ceiueGod discouereth hipocri [...] and giueth them their revvard. himselfe in a perswasion of his saftie, when his heart is burned with the hoat yron of a guil­tie conscience, against God or his Prince, God will not be flattered with, although man flatter man, dissemble with man, or play the hypocrite before men: for he will vncouer their cunning, and reueale their inwarde deuises, and showe them vnto the worlde as a due reproch, and re­warde them in fine with the condigne guerdon of their endlesse tormentes.

Oh let vs therefore be wise in the truth, let vs be circumspect as serpentes, that wee be not o­uer taken, with these alluring Cerenes that sing sweetly in our eares, absolution, absolution▪ par­don, pardon, dispensation, dispensation for sin, they deceyue vs, they drawe vs, with the flouds of errors: beware that their pleasant tunes pre­uayleThe vvisdome of Vlisses. not with any of vs, but like wise Vlysses, let vs binde our soules to the maste of the trueth of Gods word, least we yeeld the sayles of our con­sentes vnto the winde of their wylinesse, and so [Page 94] being pertakers of their practises, wee become likewise pertakers of their punishments. Let vs be simple as doues, let vs harbour no kind of wil to ioyne our selues with these dangerous men, (al­though the greatest part of the world) that vnder the pretence of holines, vnder the title of catho­likes, seeke to ouerthrowe the kingdome of god, the church of Christ, the knowledg of his word, & preching of his gospel. Although they say Lord Lord, they are not thereby made the seruants of the Lord. If we do not that which the Lord cō ­mandeth, we are meere enemies vnto the Lorde. It is not ynough to beare the greene leaues, and the beautifull blossomes of a godly life: but we must bring forth the fruits which come frō the roote, & heart of our in warde affections, & zea­lous obedience, wherwith euery true christian is so adorned, that whensoeuer Christ our sauiour passeth by vs with consideration of our good­workes,God blesseth our heartes, & vva [...]e [...]eth them so with his holy spi­rit that they bringforth the outvvard fruits. he findeth thē so frutefull that he blesseth the figge tree of our hearts, making it profitable (though no [...] of it selfe) yet by the inspiration of his holy spirite, in such sort as men may see our good fruites, & glorifie our father for his merci­full watering our soules to the bringing foorth therof. And on the contrary where there are theThe Lord hath no de light in pain­ted holines. leaues, the glorious showe of a godly life, only in externall actions, without the true fruts procee­ding frō the heart, the Lord hath no pleasure in that tree but curseth it, & withereth it euen with the breath of his mouth: so that they that passe [Page 95] by shall say that in such paynted Sepulchers the Lorde hath no delight.

We must therefore endeuor to bring forth theVVe muste follow Christ in our conuer sations and professions. fruts of a godly, holy & innocent life: following as in outward profession: so in inward zeale, the steps of our head, our husband & master Christ Iesus: who, as he is pure, so hee expecteth perfect sanctitie in all that professe him: he can not a­bide hipocrisie, a double hart, a dissēbling tong, or lips that speake feyned things. And therfore what profiteth it vs to haue the name of Christi­ans, to haue the name of Protestantes, of Catho­likes, & such like glorious titles, whereof many in these our daies brag & boast? namely that they knowe Christ, and confesse him only in the out­ward show, whē in deed in our actions & inward cogitations we deny him, in framing thē accor­ding to the world, & according to the course ofMat. 7 11. the multitude, for euery one that saith Lord Lord shal not enter into the kingdome of heauen, but he that doth the will of god which is in heauen. And againe, why call yee mee Lord Lorde (saythLuc. 6 he) and do not that which I commande you. WeIt is not e­nough to say vve knovve Christ, but we must doe that vve learne of Christ see then that we discharge not our duties to god in saying we knowe him, but in performance of the trueth, which we learne of him. And there­fore as wee in respecte of our profession chal­lenge the name of Christians, & seeme as it were offended, when the messengers and ministers of Christ charge vs out of the worde of God, that we degenerate from the perfect conuersation of [Page 93] a true Christian, by the loosenesse of our liues▪ and slacke performance of our duties to Christ: let vs frame al our affections as becommeth true Christians. And let vs not deceyue or slatter our selues, with a foolish conceit of being Christians, when in deede our conuersation differeth farre from the doctrine of Christ. It behoueth vs to examine our liues, not according to fleshly fan­tasies, but according to the truth of gods word, which is a glasse whereby we may set al our acti­ons right, and in good order, & iudge betweene trueth and falshoode, betweene light and dark­nesse, betweene the Gospell of Christe, and the traditions of men. Wee haue a good president hereof, namely to try and examine our zeale, byAct. 17. 11. The men of Thessal. and Berea an ex­ample to try and search for the truth. the example of the men of Thessalonica & Berea (not in that som of thē persecuted the Apostles) but in that, as they receiued the worde of God, they searched the scriptures, for the increase of their knowledge of the truth, wherby they might not onely frame their owne liues, but directe o­thers, not onely in worde, but in godly life and conuersation, which was the cause also that the disciples were called Christians in Antiochiafirst, namely for that they came neere vnto Christ in godlines of life. Search the scripturs, for they areThe sciptures testifle of Christ. 105. 39. they which testifie of Christ: of his manner of conuersation here in the earth, and of his eter­nall truth, the syncere profession whereof, ma­keth a perfect Christian.

Then this name of a Christian onely, is not [Page 97] due of right vnto him that can onely speake of Christe, or that can dispute of his godheade and manheade, howe he came into the worlde, when he came, to what ende he came, and such like: for so can euen the Diuels doe. But as we see wee are Christians in this, that as we knowe Christ, and professe Christ in worde, so should we followe him in life. If we haue the spirite of Christ, then are we Christians. For he that hath the spirite of Christ will conforme himselfe ac­cording to the image of Christ. And as Saint Augustine defineth a Christian: he is a perfecteAug. de vit. Christiana. Christian, which sheweth mercie vnto all men, and who is not mooued, he that regardeth an­otherThe definitiō of a christian mannes greefe as his owne, whose table is open and readie for the poore, who seemeth contemptible, base, and of no accompt before men: hee that despiseth▪earthly, to winne hea­uenly thinges, who suffereth not the poore to bee oppressed, hee that succoureth the needie: he that weepeth, when others doe weepe, shew­ing himselfe of mercifull affection towardes all men: who is weake (sayeth Saint Paule) and I am not diseased? This is a true description of that, whereof wee would be accompted profes­sors, namely true Christianitie, which as we see chiefely consisteth in mercie, in loue, and cha­ritableChristianity consisteth in mercy and loue. affection one towardes another: In so much as we see that by the rule of this Christi­an dutie, wee must showe our selues assistaunt to all so farre forth as our habilitie will extend and [Page 98] especially to those that are of the householde of faith, we must do to others, that which we wold that others should doe vnto vs. But alas howe farre too short come manie of our time, to thisMany that are called Christians come too short o [...] bee­ing true christians. Christian dutie: yea of such as will not onely be termed, but which terme thēselues Protestantes, and Christians? It were too hard and a verie vn­mannerly enterprise for me to enter into the dis­course of that wherin I know I shall offend manyA thanklese office to [...]e­prone offen­ces. & especially froward, stubborne, and stiffnecked natures, who I knowe will bid mee plucke out the beame of mine own eye first: and for my ownThe confes­sion of the author. part I thanke them for their good remembrance I trust I stande not to iustifie my selfe, but open­ly condemning my selfe as a wicked wretch, iu­stified yet in faith by the bloude and merites of Christ.

But good Christian brethren, the dearest thing to satisfie my greatest expectation is, patienceThe authors cheefest ex­pectation. for my boldnesse. And to returne to my purpose to controule in the name of Christ, such as will outwardly showe themselues what, inwardlye they be not, namely Christians: for surely great hath beene the tryall of Christians of late dayes. And the former pollicie of Constantius for tryallGods proui­dence in s [...]n ding dearth a try all of true christi­ans. of Christians, came farre too short of the meere prouidence of God, the yeare past and very like­ly to continue the yeare to come: namely, the general dearth of corne and other necessaries for the reliefe of man, in which extremity, many were the mouths that wanted reliese, yea the mouths [Page 99] of good christians, which the gluttonous cor­morancie of Epicu [...]es deuoured in excesse: nay the trysling toyes, the needles and bootles crea­tures,A great abuse in many in these daies of dearth. as haukes, hoūds & other offensiue things in the sight of god hath deuoured more in many mens houses in a weeke, thē some of the masters of the same haue giuen to the needy in a month, which is a testimonie of colde christianitie: the backe and the belly will be constant witnesses a­gainst some in the day of the Lorde, that their hearts & externall professions with the tongue, haue beene at discorde, namely the excesse of gluttony and pride in apparell, will testifie that their actions were not guided by the infallable rule of that true Christianitie.

Furthermore, be there not in the world, that can & do professe Christ with the mouth, resort to his word, argue thereof, & can cunningly dis­puteA token of cold christi­anity. thereof, that in this miserable estate of the poore oppressed members of Christ, see them to want, heare thē to mourne, lament & cry out for relife, & they will not consider it? they will not heare the cry of the poore: hauing their barnes full of corne old & newe: and their bagges full in their chestes of white & red: and yet wincke at the estate of the world, expecting greater extre­mitie to come to the poore, that their owne ri­ches may increase, & yet will be accounted chri­stians? Alas what Christianitie, what loue, nay,Let vs pray for reforma­tion. what humanitie is in this? God grant reforma­tion of these thinges, in this acceptable time.

[Page 100]A great volume might be replenished with such like manifest testimonies of colde Christia­nitie in England of the most estates of men, who are dayly warned out of the worde of God, to returne from their wickednesse of heart, and to seeke trueth and perseuere theerin, and yet re­garde it not. And of all other testimonies of an vnchristian like conscience (howsoeuer theyThe greatest testimony of an vnchristiā like consciēce slatter themselues with the outward profession of Christ) the greatest is in the time of dearth and famine, to retaine that store which God the free giuer of all thinges, hath afforded them, and to holde vp the price of their victuall (which they haue freely receyued) to so high & intollerable a price, that the pouertie of such as are in the sightThe hungry bodies of the poore muste pine to fill the filthy de­sires of the rich. of god as deare (nay perchance more deare) then they, can not obtaine sufficiencie of any thing to releeue and sustayne their liues, so that the hun­gry bodies of manie are dryuen to pine, to fill the rauening desires of fewe, in their filthye mucke. who is there that of his small store doth a little releeue the poore, that hath lesse? nay who of his superfluous aboundaunce extendeth his hande to helpe him that hath nothinge at all? This is a fault intollerable and yet vnpu­nishable. But be not deceyued yee that gape so wyde to swallowe vppe the poore, that shutte your cares from the crye of the needie, and drawe out your noses so long to smell, and your tongues and handes to licke vppe, and take a­waye the sweete of other men, howsoeuer you [Page 101] collour it vnder the name of Christians, Catho­liques or Protestantes: for assuredly your destru­ction is neere.

Come forth therefore, and as you are armed (as you saye) with the names of Christians andHe that is a true christian must fight a­gainst concu­piscence. the knowledge of Christ, fight nowe in time a­gainst these wicked desires, this dangerous poy­son of concupiscence, trye your selues to bee, that in deede which you bragge to be, the soul­diers of Christ to fight against the worlde, and the seruauntes of the worlde, that fight against Christ, for betweene them is there noe congrue­tie. Say not my corne my store my victuall and mine increase is mine owne and therfore at mine owne disposition, for thou deceyuest thy selfe: is not the whole worlde the Lordes, and all that therein is? He can then take all from thee, andThe vvhole vvorld is the lords. giue it vnto thy needie brother. And where thou sayest, I must not lende, I may not giue, I will not diminish my store which I haue proui­ded for mine owne vse, in what extremitie so e­uer my needie brother be, for feare least I should want my self, for euen this also (thou foole) is anA perilous conceit of the rich. argument of little faith in thee, and lesse chari­tie. Howe I praye you doe the most part of vs, that are so harde hearted, weepe with them that weepe? Doe we not see manie poore fathers and mothers of families, and manie fatherlesse and helpelesse litle ones, howle and weepe, lament &VVee doe not vveepe vvith them that vveepe. mourne, and we doe not onelie not weepe with them, that is take part of their miseries, but wee [Page 102] giue the cause of their weeping, with the bitter­nesse, of our consciences that farre vnlike chri­stians, hold fast that with the cords of couetous­nesse which God vouchsafed of his liberalitie, and yet wee must be accounted Christians, this is lamentable. Can God that is a iust God winckGod vvill call an a [...]e compt [...] vs, hovv vve ha [...] bestovved our goods. at this our counterfeite holinesse for euer? will he not call account of vs, howe we haue besto­wed our goods? And how shall we answere him? shall we say we haue bestowed them vpon buil­ding our gay houses, vpō purchasing of farmes to make our children gentlemen, vpon hauks & houndes for our repast, vpon gay attire to make vs seemely to the worlde, or vppon delicates for our tables, or vpō any such transitory thing? will these things be an excuse, or a sufficient discharg for our colloured Christianitie thinke you, when the needie members of Christ shall stand before you? the vewe of whome shall strike such a guilt in your consciences, that euen your owne con­ceites will cry out against your countersect holi­nesse, and condemne you: and the heauie iudge­ments of God which accōpanieth such vnfaith­full stewardes, shall light vpon you, and for euer­more confound you. Oh this will be soure sauceSovvre sauce after svveete meat. after your sweete meates, this will be more bitter thē gal, vnto the conscience that is now nothing at all touched with the consideration of these things. Oh it behoueth vs thē to looke about vs in time, and to take circumspect heede that those things which proceed, either of obstinate hard­nesse [Page 103] of heart, or hypocrisie, which is too general a disease, lodge no longer in our dissemblinge breastes. Let these things that are so manifest a­gainst the truth of our profession be driuen far from vs. Let not lawe be gouerned with will, but let will be subiect vnto godly lawes, let not laweGo [...] god▪ be turned into licentious libertie, but let our li­bertie be grounded vpon the perfect rule of our freedome in Christ, and let the Magistrate mini­ster indifferent iudgement.

The very aduersaries vnto true Christianitie note (in those that craue and couet to be called Christians) too much rebellion euē against their owne profession. And euen reioycingly cry out and say among themselues, there there, so would we haue it. They make our liues (which dige­nerate from the truth, which we seeme to holde, and teach) an argument against vs, there be soThe aduersaries of gods [...]uth, note our professiō to be accompanied with vngodly actions. many figge trees that haue fayre blossomes and greene leaues with little or no frute, that they euen say of vs, they seeme to bee that they are not, And we make our corrupt life, a sclaunder of the Gospell of Iesus Christe. But no doubt this feyned Christianitie is not generall: but woulde to God it were more perticuler: it is not common to all, but would God it were not so common to any. But such haue beene from the beginning, some there are, and some will be vnto the end. For necessarie it is that offences doe come, but woe vnto them by whome they come. And therefore for the loue of him whose [Page 104] seruauntes wee professe in woordes to bee, let vs become the same in thought, worde, and ac­tions. As wee crye out Christe, Christe, in our mouthes, so let vs put on Christe in our man­ners, otherwise our profession is but payntedOutvvarde sanctetie and invvard sin. with outwarde sanctitie, and defiled with in­warde sinne. We can not serue God and Mam­mon, we cannot say, wee worshippe Christ, and help not our brethren. Our westerne parts haue felt the displeasure of God, by a generall dearth,Gods visitation by dearth a good [...] [...]yall of true christ­ians. onely to proue true Christians, namely the libe­ralitie, mercie and compassion, of the rich, and the patience of the poore and needie. And it hath wrought this experience for our learning,The experi­ence vvhich vve haue by dearth fin­deth fevv true christi­ans. (to the griefe of the godly Christians in deede) howe that true Christianitie cooleth, and hypo­crisie breaketh foorth into mightie fires, charitie is choked with the cloddes of couetousnes, faith is fled, and pittie pressed downe with pride, fewe men we finde regarde another mans want, ano­ther mans greefe, another mans estate. But by a generall deuision, wee see all men for them­selues and for their children: and none fauou­reth the poore, nor their distressed families. Thus we finde by experience in this hard time, which argueth, that all those are not true Christians, which in outwarde showe, can professe Christe, all not godly in deede, which seeme holye in wordes, and yet will they all be accounted Chri­stians. And as for the patience of the poore sort, it is for the most part vnperfect for the bitternes [Page 105] of want is so sharpe vnto them, that they can hardly digest it without vomiting out the poy­son of forcible outrage, not waiting the good pleasure of God to be relieued, who fed his peo­ple in the old world very miraculously. But the experience which we haue by this hard time, pro­ueth little faith generally. Where is our due con­sideration of this comfortable saying blessed isPsal. 40. A comforta­ble blessing to encourage christians, yet little regar­ged. the man that considereth the poore and needy, the Lord wil deliuer him in the due time of tro­ble? Is not here a sufficient promise to stirre vp al true christians to shew themselues in their like­nesse, and especiallye in the time of distresse to shew helpe to the poore? And let vs duely consi­der that where a blessing is pronounced to such as extend mercy and compassion (the best tokenA c [...]se a­gainst coun­ter [...]a [...] christ­ians and badge of a true christian) the contrary must needes be, cursed are such as consider not the poore & needy, the Lorde will leaue such in their distres in the day of visitation. He that seeth his brother want, hauing wherewith to relieue him, and shutteth vp his compassion from him, how can he say that he is a christian? Nay how can heSuch measure as we meate such vvill God measure to vs. looke for any other rewarde, but to expect such measure at the handes of God, as he measured to his poore afflicted bretheren? that is he shall want and not be relieued, he shall call and not be heard, hunger and thirst and shall not bee com­forted. Let vs haue therefore speciall regarde to this point of christianity: namely that as we are all members of one body in Christ our heade, so [Page 106] let vs hold togeather vnfainedly in one faith, one truth, one religion and constant profession ther­of: and as the members of one bodye, one to as­sist, comfort, relieue, ayde, succour, and support another, that we may shew hartely and not cold­ly, zealously and not slackly, truely and not de­ceitfully, that we are the same in deede that we professe to be in shew. For it will be no sufficient plee for vs, to aunswere the declaration of our owne guilty consciences, to say we haue profes­sedThat vvhich many do i­magine glo­rious novv shalbe in the end no ex­cuse. the name of Christe, we haue embraced his worde, we haue disputed and reasoned of the scriptures, we haue repayred vnto and beene de­sirous to heare sermons: we haue acquainted our selues with and harbored the preachers & mini­sters of the word of God: nay it wil be no suffici­ent discharge for vs to say we haue prophesied in the name of God, & in his name cast out diuels.Our exter­nall glory nothing. What becommeth then of all our goodly shews of our external glory, wherin we stand as marks for the worlde to gaze at for holines sake, & yet inwardly we are not as we seeme to be. How ma­ny are there then deceiued, that perswade them selues that euen the bare name of a protestant & title of a christiā is sufficient to acquite vs in the last day? Ananias & Saphyra bare goodly leaues and glorious blossomes in the externall shew but for their harboring dissimulation and hipocrisie in their hearts, they were rewarded with present death. Dangerous are these present daies wherin we may see goodly greene leaues vpon most fig [Page 107] trees to make fayre showes a far off. But whenMany make fair shovves a farre of. we approch neare them when we enter into con­sideration of their fruits we find them either rot­ten few or none: how many be there that come to the church, shewing outwardly great deuotiō, they heare sermons, they become partakers of the sacrament of Christs body and bloud, they out:Daungerous people. wardly seeme to fauor the gospell: but when we come neare them, when they be tried with the touch, it is seene that there resteth in many of thē a cloake of dangerous desire of enterteining the cloudy darknes of Romishe religion, & the vsur­ped authority therof, contrary to the light of the truth. Some will controll mee for entring into iudgement, but would to God the experience of the cause coulde make me a liar. But we doubt there are such weedes amongst the good corne,VVeeds amongst good▪ corne. there are such wolues in sheepes attire whose hi­pocrisie is dispensed with, and they must needs accompt themselues Catholikes. And the more cunningly they can cloake their dissembling de­sires, their secret and hidden mischiefes, so much is their profession the more commendable. ForCard. Comos letters to Parrie. The cheefest lesson of the romish tutors. it is the chiefest part of the lessō which these Ro­mish tutors giue their pupils, namely to make an outward shew of true obedience to her maiesty, & her most godly proceedings, yet if oportunity might serue, they are dispensed with to murther her. Oh blouddy villains, & yet will be accōpted Catholikes? How can this cunning cloaking two faces vnder one hood, stande with the name of a good catholike or christian? How can they that [Page 108] dissemble before men, saye their heartes are to God? It is no doubt the pollicie of the red Dra­gon and his adherents to flatter men in sinne, to the end to draw them into eternall destruction.VVhat it is to deny Christ. For (sayth Christe) hee that denieth mee, that is standeth not bold and constant to confesse him, in that perfect and sincere religion which is with out gall or bitternes, accompanied with no de­sire of murther or reuenge, such a one will he de­nie before his father which is in heauen. What profit then do these glorious falslye cannonized saints get for their dissembling obedience to her maiesty, cloaked dutie, and counterfeyt holines, whereby they inwardly indeuor to commit such bluddy and Cainlyke actions against her maisty, her countrye and quiet, onelye to satisfie theTrue religion shovveth itselfe in chari­ty. bloud thirstye desire of vndoubted Antichriste? whose religion (were it of God) woulde shew itselfe in charitie to all the world manifestly as the testimony and badge of their vnfeyned duety to Christe, and not in desire of innocent bloud, the knowne cognizance of cruelty, the handmaiden of sathan. Let vs not deceiue our selues, for heeHovv to knovv a true and a false Christian that is of Christ will suffer with Christ, will loue Christ and christians, but he that is of sathan, will bring foorth the fruites of sinne. And he that is neither hot nor cold, a key cold professor, a new­ter,Neuters de­ny Christ. that is contented to run with euery religion and thinke well of euery profession he that is in­different betweene light and darknes, doth also plainly deny Christ. But if we will stand strongly [Page 109] in the faith of our maister vnto the death, not onely outwardlye in wordes, but euen to the fa­ces of our aduersaries in inwarde zeale vnto the death, framing our affections, our heartes, our mindes, and all the powers of our bodies, to bring foorth the fruites of that profession, which we seeme to holde, and as we haue the names ofThe aduersa­ries of the truth doe striue invaine against true christians. protestantes, so if we protest before men in our workes, and before God in our consciences, the truth of his word, then let the serpent seeke what shiftes he can, let sathan do his worst, and the red dragon the bishop of Rome, and all the rabble of his adherents waite till they be weary, and their multitudes make what glorious shews of threats for our ouerthrow they can: yea let all the kings of the earth, and great princes of the world that haue taken vp the swoord against Christ, and his spouse the church frame all their forces, and yet shall his little flocke be safe vnder the shadow ofGod maintaineth the true doctrine of his vvord. his winges. The mighty power of the Lorde hath from the beginning defended, maintained, and alwayes preserued, the true doctrine of his worde, and the true professours thereof, and let vs not feare but he will to the end defend, maintaine, and preserue the same, hee hath pro­misedRo. 15. it that will surely performe it. Whatsoe­uer is written, was written for our learninge, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might haue hope, namely constantly for the loue of the kingdome of God to stande in the day of triall. For as the worde of God is [Page 110] pure, simple, and without anye kinde of spot or wrinckle: So it requireth those that be professors therof, to be pure simple and constant, without deceit, without dissimulation or hipocrisie. ForThe vvorld & the multitude cannot abide the truth. the world & the multitude, loue shiftes, starting holes & meanes to deceiue God and good men: And therfore brag the enimies of God and say, they haue the whol world on their side, the grea­test part of people. And the reason is, because their deuises and traditions are of the world. For saith Christ vnto his disciples, if you were of the worlde the worlde woulde loue you, but I haue chosen you out of the world, and therfore doth the world hate you. We see then that the way to become true christians, is not to ioyne with the multitude, to tread the steps of the greatest part of the world, for so shall we shake hands with the Elders and rulers, with the whole troupe of the Iewes, with Pilate, with Herode, and the Empe­rours power, to rise vp againste Christe and his truth (as now the greatest part of the world do) which God forbid, many are called but few areAll that hear the vvorde of God of not the seruants of god chosen. Then are not the greatest part of the world, that heare the word of God, the seruants of God. The truth is not tyed to the multitude, nor to the outwarde shew of coloured christian conuersation, but hee that feareth the Lorde (which is in the heart) and worketh righteous­nesse (which is also in the outwarde conuersa­tion) is accepted with him. The multitude then make not any thing at all for vs or against vs, the [Page 111] truth shall (no doubt) triumph & mightely pre­uaile, when we shall see Pharaoh of Rome, and all the huge host of his confederacie ouer throwne in the red sea of their owne inuentions. For he that brought Israell out of Aegypt, he that dryed vp the red sea, he that brought water out of theGod that vvrought so vvonderfully for our fathers of old vvill vvorke for vs. hard rocke, and he that hath done so many won­derfull thinges for our fathers of olde, which we maye applye for our comfort, hee which hath brought foorth and reuealed so manye treache­ries and treasons againste our moste gratious Queene, and common-weale of late daies prac­tized, he, euen he shall deliuer vs from the Ro­mishe tyrannie, he shall drye vp the sea of their blouddy conspiracies, that they shall not touch vs, or hinder vs, but shall tourne them euen vp­pon their owne pates, he shal bring the water of perfect knowledge out of the rocke of his worde, whereof all the faithfull of the world shall drincke. Therefore with a louing consent, let vs make the sweet harmonye of thankes giuing for his moste gratious deliueraunce, for which our mouthes maye rightlye bee filled with laughter at the foolishe deuises of these wicked men, and our heartes bee replenished with ioye of the mercifull protection of the Lorde, who hath (as we see) done great thinges for vs alreadye, for which euerye true Christian hath great cause to reioyce.

The righteous loue to speake of this they loue to consider it, and likewise to praise the [Page 112] the mighty power of the God of heauen for the performance of it. If the children of Israell were much bound vnto the goodnes of God for their deliuerye from the bondage of their bodies inOur deliuery from the Ro­mishe bon­dage is farre more preti­ous then of the children of Israell out of Egipt. A good ex­chaunge. Our saluatiō standeth in the true knovvledge and seruice of God. Aegypt: how far greater cause haue we to thinke our selues bound vnto the mighty hand of God, and his aboundaunt mercies, that hath brought vs out of the bondage of soule and bodye from the Romish Babylon, chaunging our spirituall captiuitie into spirituall liberty, blacke idolatry into the true seruice of God, in knowledge and true seruice of whome standeth oure salua­tion, our assured helpe and infallible defence againste the multitude of all the aduersaries of Gods truth. Let vs therefore reioyce and singe that most acceptable song which most pleasethReformation of our liues is the svvetest song that pleaseth the Lorde. the Lorde, namely the vnfeyned reformation of liues, and conforming them after a more dutiful sort to God and Christ, that our conuersations before men maye witnes our perfect Christiani­ty, and our certaine being the children of God, let vs beautifie the chambers of our hearts, with the flourishinge braunches of a godlye life, let vs morti [...]ie and kill all those euil and peruerse affe­ctions, which break forth and darken the bright beames of that profession, which euery true chri­stian ought to hold. Let vs beare the sayles of our conuersations euen with the wind of the worde of God. And let the holye Ghost rule the sterne and guide the rowder of our desires, leaste that we cracke the barke of our religion againste the [Page 113] rockes of slaunderous toonges: So shall our ad­uersaries be ashamed to mutter against vs, for li­uing contrarye to that which we professe, and God who is our onely defence shall be pleased with vs in his son Christ, and continue his won­ted protection towards vs in this life, so that we his little flocke shall not be dismaied at anye ru­mors of warres, and other like threats of Gods enimies, but shall (though not of anye deserts of ours worthy) in the end through the merites of Christ, be partakers of the kingdom of heauen, which God for his Christes sake graunt vs. A­men.

A Psalme of praise, wherein the mercie, the loue, the prouidence, strength, and wisdome of God is remem­bred, his mindfulnes of the afflictions, and daunge­rous estate of his seruants, in the time of their grea­test need, and the deserued confusion of the aduer­saries of his truth, briefly declared.

Oh Ioua Domine noster, quàm nobile est tuum nomen in toto terra­rum orbe?

I Will praise the Lord, with all my heart, and shew forth all his mar­ueilous workes.

2 I will be ioyfull and reioyce in thee, oh Lorde, I will sing praises vnto thee, oh thou most highest.

3 For thou hast turned backe mine enimies, thou hast throwne downe those that deuised [Page 114] mischiefe against me: yea thou hast reproued the wicked, and turned their vaine hope to naught, & their counterfeyt glory into open ignominy and reproch.

4 Thou hast taken my cause in hand, mayn­teyned my right, and preserued me, thou sitting in the seat of iudgement, hast showen thy self an vpright Iudge.

5 Thou hast rebuked the multitude of those vngodly ones, that haue sought the dishonor of thy name, the spoyle of thy sanctuarie, & bloud of thine annointed.

6 In so much as I may, to my comfort, say vn­to them, and to the chiefe Captaines of their multitudes, Oh enimye, the destructions that thou didest threaten, wherin thou vainly vaun­tedst to destroy Cities, to subuert Kingdoms, & to extinguish the memory of the godly from of the earth (behold) thou thy selfe consumest, the breath of the Lords mouth shaketh thee, thy tri­umphing before the victory, soundeth forth thy perpetual shame, and deserued confusion.

7 The Lorde, whose true seruice, thou seekest to violate, and whose seruaunts thou seekest to supplant, hath an euerlasting dominion, and he sitteth in iudgement, to giue vnto euery man his due right.

8 It is he that only ruleth and gouerneth the whole world with righteousnesse, and with the ballance of his truth and equity discideth euery mans cause.

[Page 115]9 It is he that is the strong & a defensible To­wer, to such as are oppressed, an assured refuge to the afflicted, and an vndoubted reuenger of such as seeke to lay violent handes vpon his an­noynted.

10 And therfore as many as know thy name, (Oh Lord) thy mercy and strength, wil put their confidence in thee, for thou neuer forsakest, but duely relieuest, and protectest those that truely seeke thee.

11 Oh sing praises, sing praises therefore vn­to the Lord, that hath his dwelling on high, and yet so beholdeth all such as are true of heart, let vs declare vnto al people the worthy acts which he hath done for vs already, wherof great cause we haue to reioyce in him.

12 He seeketh and findeth out such as are de­sirous to shed bloud, & thirste after the destruc­tion of his annoynted, shewing himselfe moste mindfull of those that loue him, and forgetteth not to deliuer such as are in daunger, and win­keth not at the wicked.

13 Haue mercy (Lord) vpon me, oh thou that hast miraculouslye defended me from deathes doore. Consider how mine enimies yet cease not to imagine mischiefe against me, and to lay violent handes vppon my guiltles person, thou my strength and aid, consider it, and deliuer me.

14 That I may with ioy sing foorth thy wor­thy praises and entring into Syon, maye reioy­singly declare, that thou art he that sauest me, by [Page 116] whom I stande, and by whome my enimies are throwne downe on euery side of me.

15 A huge multitude of enimies haue risen vp against mee, but thou hast brought it so to passe that they are ouerwhelmed with the sloud they deuised to bring in vpō me, they are fallen into the pit they digged for mee, and they are strangled in the snare, they layd priuelie for me. This oh Lord is thy doing, and it is comfortable euen vnto my soule.

16 Oh Lord thy wisedome is vnsearcheable, thy loue incomprehensible, and thy mercyes wonderfull, and thy iudgement knowne by ex­ecuting iustice, vppon such as vse crafty wylenes against the innocent.

17 Rise vp, rise vp (oh lord) in the behalf of thy seruant, let not thy hādmayd be alwaies forgot­ten, let not her hope, which she hath alwaies in thy defence, be frustrate, let not the wicked pre­uaile, in the craftie conspiracies which they i­magined: Cast them down (oh Lord) and let the effect of their deuises shew their folly, & them­selues to be but mortall men.

Esai. 35. 3. 4.‘Confirmate manus languidas, & labantia corroborate genua: Dicite animifestinis, este fortes, & impa­uidi, en Deus vester vltor veniet, praemiator Deus, ipse veniet seru [...]tum vos.’
‘Non vi, sed veritate.’

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