[Page] A CHRISTIAN DIRECTORIE GVIDING MEN TO THEIR SALVATION. DIVIDED INTO THREE BOOKES. THE first vvherof apperteining to Resolu­tion, is only conteined in this volume, deui­ded into tvvo partes, and set forth novv againe vvith many corrections, and ad­ditions by th' Authour him self, vvith re­profe of the corrupt and falsified edition of the same booke lately published by M. Edm. Buny. THER is added also a methode for the vse of al; with two tables, and a prefa­ce to the Reader, which is ne­cessarie to be reade.

Psal. 4. v. 3. Filij hominum vt quid diligitis vanitatem. You children of men why loue you vanitie.
Luc. 1. v. 22. Porrò vnum est necessarium. But one thing is necessarie.

ANNO. 1585. AVGVSTI 30.

A TABLE OF THE CHAPTERS CONTEINED IN BOTH THE PARTES OF this booke. Wherin such as haue bene newly added or much al­tered in this edition, are noted with a starre in the margent.

In the first part are thes 12.
1. Of incon­sideratiō. OF the manifold perils & inconue­niēcies that doe it sue to the vvorld by inconsideration, and hovv ne­cessarie it is for euery man to enter into cogitatiō of his ovvn estate.
Chap. 1 pa. 1.
2. That ther is a God. That there is a God vvhich revvardeth good and euil, against al Atheistes of old and of our time, vvith the most inuincible proofes alleaged for the same both by Ievv and Gen­tile. VVherin also is set dovvne the confirma­tion of al scriptures by euident demonstratiōs.
Chapt. 2. page 25.
3. Why mā was crea­ted. VVhy God created man, and for vvhat end he planted him in this vvorld, and of the obligation that man hath therby to attend to the affaire for vvhich he vvas sent hyther; to vvit, vnto the seruice of almightie God.
[Page] [...]
4. Proofes of Chri­stian reli­gion. That this seruice required by God, must be in Christian religion; the particuler proofes and confirmations of vvhich religion, are set dovvne both by that vvhich passed before Christes appearance vpon earth, vvhile he vvas in this life, and after his ascension into heauen.
Chap. 4. page 132.
5. Who is a true Chri­stian. Hovv a man may iudge or discerne of himself, vvhether he be a true Christian or not; vvith a declaration of the tvvo partes belonging to that profession, vvhich are be­leefe and life.
Chap. 5 page 298.
6. Two par­tes of good life. Of the tvvo principal pointes that doe appertaine to a Christian life; that is to saie: taresist al sinne, and to excercise al kinde of vertue; vvith the meanes and methode hovv to perfourme them both.
Chap. 6. page 323
Of the accompt vvhich Christians must 7. Of the ac­compting daye. yeld to God of the duties and offices before re­hearsed. As also the Maiestie, seueritie, ter­rour, and other circumstances of that reconing day, vvith tvvo seueral times appointed for that purpose.
Chap. 7. page 349.
Of the nature of sinne, and of the vnvvor­thines 8. Of the na­ture of inne and inners. of him that committeth the same; for iustifyinge the seueritie of Gods iudgement set doune and declared in the chapter going before.
Chap. 8. page 378.
An other consideration for the further 9. [...] Maiestie and bene­fites. [Page] iustifying of Goas [...] [...] [...] station of our grieuous offence. Taken from the iuestimable Maiestie of him vvhom vve of­fende, & of the innumerable benifices vvhich he hath bestovved.
Chap 9. page 400.
Of vvhat opinion vve shal be concerning 10. Of the day of our departu­re. the matters aforsaid, at the time of our diath; as also vvhat our state shalbe at that passa­ge, and hovv different our iudgement from that it is novv.
Chap. 10 page 419.
Of the greate and seuere paines and pu­nishmentes 11. Punishe­mētes af­ter death. appointed by God for sinners after this life. As also of tvvo kindes and sortes therof, the one temporal for them that shal be saued, th' other eternal for the damned.
Chap. 11. page 444.
Of the most honorable, excellent, and muni­ficent 12. Of rewar­des after this life. revvardes and paimentes, ordained for such as trulie serue God, and doe imploy their time in perfourmance of his most holie com­mandementes.
Chap. 12. page 479.
In the second part are thes 8.
1. Dispaire of Gods mercie. Of the first impediment that is vvont to let sinners from resolution. VVhich is, the mistrust & diffidence in Gods mercie, through the multitude and grieuousnes of their of­fences.
Chap. 1. page 523.
The second let of resolutiō; vvhich is, the su­posed hardnes & asperitie of vertuous life. The 2. Against supposed difficul­ties. [Page] fallacie vvherof is discouered, and the mani­fold helpes declared, that doe make the same most easie, svveet, & pleasant.
Chap. 2 p. 570.
The third impediment that stayeth diuers 3. Feare of persecu­tion. men from resolutiō in Gods seruice. VVhich is, the feare they conceaue of persecution, afflictiō losse, danger or tribulation.
Chap. 3 page 631.
The fourth and greatest impediment that 4. The loue of the world. hindereth resolution, to vvitte: The loue and respect vvhich men beare to the pleasures and vanities of this vvorld.
Chap. 4. page 688.
5. Exāples of true resolutiō. Examples of true resolution in the tvvo former pointes; of suffering for Christ, and contemning the vvorld. Adioined for the better declaration & confirmation of the tvvo chapters next going before.
Chap. 5. page 747
The fist impediment of resolution, in the 6. Against presum­ption. seruice of almightie God. Proceeding of ouer much presumption in the mercie of our Sa­uiour, vvithout remembrance of his iustice.
Chap. 6. page 793.
The sixt thing that vseth to stay and hin­der 7. Against delay. men from mature resolutiō. VVhich is, the deceitful hope and persuation to doe it better or vvith more ease aftervvard.
Chap. 7. p. 818
Of three other lettes and impedimentes 8. Sloth, Ne­gligence & obdu­ration. that hinder men from resolution, to vvit; Slothfulnes; careles negligence; and hardnes of hart, vtterly contemning al things: vvith the cōclusion of this first booke.
Chap. 8. p. 852.

THE PREFACE CONTAINING THE CAVSES AND REASONS OF this nevv edition, as also a detection of the foule and false dealing of M. Edm. Buny Minister, in his late edition of the for­mer booke.
With certaine instructions very profita­ble to the reader.

WHEN of late I had taken in hand to fi­nish and send vnto thee (deare Christian reader) th' other two The reason of printing againe this first booke of Resolu­tion. bookes, that were promised of this worke, I meane thos two which should treate of the right entrance and faithful perseuerance in the ser­uice of almightie God: I was moued by diuers frendes, first of al to put againe in print (in some better order then before) the first booke ap­petteining to resolution. Wherunto I was the more easie to be induced, for that I perceaued many monethes before, that al the first copies of the said former booke, (though not so wel [Page] done as iustely I might haue wished) were vvholy dispersed and none remaining to be had.

Secondly, it being now purposed that thes second and third bookes should passe forth in better print, paper, and character, then the for­mer did, (wherin by some errour, as also by difficultie of the time, greate defect was found:) it seemed meere and requisice, that this first booke (of which th' other two doe depēd) should be made correlpondent vnto them in thes respectes also, and for that consideration to be reprinted.

Wherunto when I had yelded; I resolued in like manner, to take the same first booke into my handes againe, & to bestow a short renew vpon that which alredy was done, as wel to polish and fil vp some thinges, whetin before for want of leasure and time, I could not geue to my self any reasonable conteatation, as also to a dioine certaine new chapters, which part­ly in mine owne concept, and partly also vpon Nevv ad­ditions. information of others, I thought not vnmeet for the furnishing of this first argument and subiect of Resolution. And standing determi­ned vpon this, as also comprehending in mind and cogitation, the whole general corps of that which was to ensue in th' other two boo­kes: The vvho­le vvorke deuided in­to tvvo vo­lumes. I wel saw that I should not be able (ac­cording to my first designement) to compact the whole, in one reasonable volume; and ther­fore I resolued to deuide the same into two. Waerof the first should conteine matter of 1. Speculati­ue. discourse, know edge, speculation, and confi­deration, to moue vs to resolue; the second should handle things appetteining to exercise, 2. Practive. vse, and practise, for putting in execution our [Page 5] good desires after resolution.

This being my cogitation, and the matter now wel forward for the print; I was enfor­med of two other editions come forth of my Tvvo edi­tions of the booke of Resolution vvithout the authors knowledge. forsaid booke without my knowiedge, the one by a Catholique (as it seemeth) who per­ceuing ai copies of the former print to be spēt; for satisfying of them that desired the booke, procured the same to be set forth againe, al­beit somewhat incorrected, and very disordre­ly, not hauing the consent or aduise of such, as therin should haue geuen him best direction. The second was published by one Edmund Bany minister at Bolton Percy (as he writeth) M. Ed. Bany. in the liberties of Yorke; who with publicke licence vnder my Lord Archbishop of Yorke his protection, set forth the same to the bene­fice of his brethren; but yet so punished and plumed, (which he termeth purged;) as I could hardly by the face discerne it for mine, when it came vnto my handes, and I tooke no smale compassiō to see how pitifully the poore thing had bene handled.

Of this edition then of M. Buny, (letting Of M. Bu­nies edition. passe th' other as a matter onely of a discretion without malice,) I haue to a laertise the rea­der some few things, as wel for mine own dis­charge, wherin I am charged by him, as also for the readers admonishment, not to thinke in deed that booke to be mine, which in my name this preacher hath published. And for vttering that which I haue to say in some kinde of or­der Fovver pointes of this prefa­ce. and conueniencie of methode; I shal touch breefly in this preface thos principal pointes insuing.

First, how this booke came foorth from me 1 in the first edition.

[Page] Secondly, how it was set foorth afterwar­des 2 by M. Edm. Buny.

Thirdly, what he meaneth by his treatise 3 annexed therunto, tending (as he saith) to paci­fication.

Fourthly, how the same booke commeth 4 foorth at this present, and how the discret rea­der may vse it to his best commoditie.

of the first edition.

TO shew how this booke came foorth at the first; it shalbe requisite, perhaps, to re­peate breefly ī this place, the things that I saied in my first preface & induction; which preface and induction, M. Buny hath left out in his edi­tion, protesting, That he durst not in conscience and In his pre­face to the reader. in dutie tovvardes God, commend the same in my vvor­des vnto the reader. And yet trulie was ther no­thing in effect therin (Gentle reader) but that which here in this place shalbe repeated. First, that the primatiue occasion, inducing me to thinke vpon this worke, was the sight of a booke intituled, The excrcise of a Christian life, writen in Italian by Doctor Loartes of the So­cietie The first occasion of setting so­orth the booke of Resolution. of IESVS, and translated some years since by a vertuous learned gentilman of our coun­trie. Which booke for that I vnderstood of certaintie to haue profited many, towardes pietie and deuotion: I was moued to cause the same to be printed againe, with certaine am­ple additions to the furnishing of some mat­ters which that author had omitted: deuiding my whole purpose into three seueral bookes, wherof the first was to persuade mē vnto true resolution; the secōd to instruct vs how righte­ly to beginne; the third, how a man may hould [Page 6] but and perseuer. Secondly I shewed, that be­ing entred into the worke, and hauing set downe an other order and method to my self, then that treatise of D. Loartes did obserue; and hauing begunao the first booke touching resolution, whereof no part was handled in that other treatise: I found by experience, that I could not wel conioine th' one with th' other, if I would satisfie either th' order or argument by me conceaued: and therfore that I was infor­ced to resolue vpon a further labour then at the first I had intended, and this was, to draw out the whole three bookes my self, not omit­ting any thing that was in the said exercise, or other like good treatisses to this effect.

And al this to the end, that our countrie­men might haue some one sufficient directiō, for matters of spirit and vertuous life, among so many bookes of controuersies as haue bene writen & are in writing daily. Which bookes (said I) albeit in thes our troblesome and quar­relous Bookes of deuotion more profi­table to good life thē bookes of controuer­sies. times, they be necessary for defence of our faith against so manie seditious innoua­tions, as now daily are attempted: yet help they litle oftentimes to good life, but rather doe fil the heades and hartes of men with a spirit of contradiction and contention, which for the most part doe hinder deuotion, which deuotion is nothing els, but, A quiet, calme, and peacable state of our soule, induced [...] a iotful prompt­nes The descri­ption of de­uotion. and alacritis to the diligent execution of al things that doe or may apperteine to the honour and ser­uice of almightbe God. For which cause, the holie Apostle dehorted greatly his scholer Timo­thie 2. Timot. 2. from this contention and contradiction of wordes, affirming clearly, that it was profita­ble to nothing but to subuect the hearers.

[Page] I affirmed further, that our forfathers were most happie in respect of vs, who receauing Our fathers happie that builded, and contended not about the founda­tion. with humilitie one vniforme faith without contention or contradiction, from their mo­ther the holie Catholique Church, did attend onlie to build vpon that foundatiō good wor­kes and vertuous life, as holie scripture com­mandeth vs to doe; wheras we, spending now al our time in iangling about this first founda­tion 1. Co. 3. of faith, haue no leasure to build either gould or siluer theron, as th' Apostle exhorteth vs, but doe weary out our selues and our owne contentious spirits, without commoditie; dy­ing with much labour and litle profit, with great disquiet and smale reward. For which cause I exhorted the discret reader of what­soeuer religion and faith he were, to moderate this heate and passion of contention, and to enter into the careful studie and exercise of good deedes, which are alwayes better among true Christians, then wordes; assuring him that this is the right way to obteine at Gods hāds, the light of true beleefe if he were amisse. Al­leaging for example therof, the most famous conuersion of Cornelius the Gentile, whos ver­tuous life, praiers, and almouse deedes, obtei­ned at the hands of almightie God, (as S. Luke doth testifie) that S. Peter was sent vnto him for his instruction and establishment in right Act. 10. faith.

I adioined moreouer, that ther being two parts of Christiā diuinitie, the one Theorike or speculatiue, belonging principally to know­ledge, Tvvo par­tes of Chri­stian aiui­nisie. discours, and beleefe; the second called practique or actiue, appertaining cheefly to action and execution: the first is more easy and common, then the second, bicause it is more [Page 7] easy to know then to doe; to discourse then to Speculation easier then practise. worke; to beleeue as we ought, then to liue as we should: and the things that a man hath to beleeue, are fewer then the things he hath to doe; learned in shorter time and with lesse dif­ficultie, thé the other are executed. Euen as we see by experience, that a breefe Cathechisme instructeth a man sufficiently in his faith; but al the bookes and sermons that we can read and heare, can not persuade the least part of men to performe so much in life, as by their voca­tion is required. For which cause I said, that both our Saucour and his Apostles did treate much more in their speaches and writings of things to be done, then of things to be known; of vertuous liuing, then of right beleeuing. The like I saied, of Holie fathers and Doctours in the Church after them, as it may be sene in their homilies, sermons, exhortations, treati­ses, commentaries, and expositions.

For this cause I saied also, that I had cho­sen to say some thing of this second part of Christian diuinitie appertaining to manners and direction of life, allotting to my self three principal pointes to be handled therin, and to be treated in three seueral bookes. The first wherof, to conteine the reasons and motiues The three bookes of this Chri­stiā directo­rie, vvith their argu­mentes. which may stir vp a Christian man to make a firme and sound resolution. The secōd to pres­cribe the particular meanes, how a man with­out errour may put in vre and practise his re­solution made. The third, to declare certaine helpes and instructions, wherby to be able to perseuer vnto the end. The first of thes bookes, was then set downe and published. The secōd and third vpon necessarie causes were deferred for a time. And this is the summarie of al that [Page] was writen in my former preface and Induc­tion, suppressed now by M. Buny for meere conscience sake as he protesteth Wherin not­withstanding I doe not easilie see, what may be accompted either so heinous or intollera­ble, as his scrupulous conscience should be a fraide to let the same passe vnto the readers eare, except it were for that in a certaine ad­uertisement, I desired eche Catholique to pray for our persecutours; or for that (perhaps) in the lines before repeated, I doe affirme faith, and beleef to be more common and easy then vertuous life; which notwithstanding I thinke, many Protestants in England wil confesse to be true; and wil easilie proue the same by the liues and actions of their own preachers and ministers. So much then for this: now let vs be­hold, how M. Buny hath set foorth the same booke with his purgation.

of M. Bunis edition.

M. Buny hauing taken this booke into his correction, as also into my Lord Archbishop of Yorke his protection; geueth it this title, A title gi­uen by M. Buny. A booke of Christian exercise &c. Perused and ac­companied vvith a treatise tending to pacification, by Edm. Buny. And vnder the title, he writeth this sentence of scripture. IESVS Christ yester day and Heb. 13. to day and the same for euer. The misterie why he set thes wordes ther, him self alone (as I thinke) vnderstandeth and hard it were for other men to coniectare. If he had taken the wordes immediatly following in the same sen­tence of S. Paul; they had bene more cleare, if not more also to the purpose. For they ar thes, Be not caried avvay vvith variable and strange doc­trines. [Page 8] But let vs permit M. Buny to folow his An old trick of be­retiques to abuse sim­ple people vvith obs­cure places of scripture. See Epiph. cont. heres. and [...] Quod vult Deum. kinde. The holie fathers that write against auncient heretiques, doe note it for an old tricke of thos companions, to delight them selues, and deceue others with obscure places of scripture. And S. Peter expresly signifieth of the same men, that principally they vsed to take the said obscure sentences out of S. Paul, whence this by M. Buny is also cited. And this for the first page.

In the next page, he placeth my Lord of Yorkes armes, accompanied with a paire of goodly crosse keyes, and a croune set ouer thé. Vnder which he writeth two latin verses, that 2. Pet. 3. say thus much in English, Thes armes haue bene My L. of yorkes ar­mes. noble in times past by ancient gentry and commendation of learning; but novv they are made more noble by the honour of Peter adioined vnto them. So that now (as ye see) it is both good doctrine, and very commendable in my Lords grace of Yorke to clame both keyes & croune, from Peters seat, which in the Byshop of Rome is made so hai­nous, and so bitterly inueighed against daily.

After the armes, insueth the dedication of the whole booke, (treating of mortification The epistle dedicaterie. and contempt of the world) vnto his good Lordship. The reason of which dedication, M. Buny vttereth in thes wordes, For that hauing In his Ep. dedicat. had (saieth he) so longe experience of the vvorld as your Lordship haue, very liklihood teacheth that nee­des you must grovve more and more from the loue therof. And it is sufficiently knovvn vnto al, that ha­uing My L. of yorkes mor­tificatiō and calling vpō others. found this mercy your self, you haue in like sort in this long course that God hath geuen you, much called on others to doe the like. In which wordes, we see, that touching the first pointe of my Lords wearines of this world, M. Buny proueth it [Page] very slenderly, by a bare likelihood only. Albeit in the second, of his Graces calling vpon others to like mortification, he alleageth the commō and sufficient knowledge of al, wherunto in reason eche man must yeld. And in truth I haue heard, how ther want not of diuers sortes and His L. ho­stise of Don­caster. Sir Robert Stapleton & others. sexes also, who can witnesse by experience of my Lordes good mortification, and how hotely he hath poursued them of late, for such affaires; and therfore (no doubt) but that this booke was very fitly dedicated to his Lord­ships protection.

After the epistle dedicatorie vnto my Lord, ther foloweth a preface to the reader, wherin The prefa­ce to the reader. M. Buny saieth, That by the litle that he hath be­stovvedin the studie of schole men, he vvil perceaueth that this booke vvas gathered out of them; vvho liuing in the corrupter time of the Church (as he speaketh) did most of al, by that occasion, treate of reformation of life, vvhen as others vvere rather occupied in controuer­sies. To which I answer, that by the litle which M Banies ignorance. M. Buny here vttereth, he sheweth him self scarse worthy to be my Lord Archbishops chaplaine, (albeit to that dignitie much lear­ning be not required,) for that whosoeuer shal looke vpon the homilies, sermons, commenta­ries, and other workes of S. Ambrose, Augustin, Gregorie, Maximus, Bede, Bernard, Anselme, and other that were not scholemen; and shal compare the same (touching exhortation and instruction to good life.) With the questions, distinctions, speculations and subtilties of Peter Lumbard, Hales, Scotus, Durand, Iandun Ca­preolus and others of that profession; shal ea­sily see, that in this matter ther is no compari­son: and consequently that M. Bunis litle studie in the scholemen is lesse then nothing at al, not [Page 9] knowing so much as the very subiect and ar­gument which they handle, or the manner how they handle the same. But al this was spoken M. Bunies vanitie. by M. Buny, for a vaine florish, and to persuade his reader, that as him self was very learned, so al that was in this booke being taken out of Dunsies (as now in England they tearme scho­lemen,) might appeare more contemptible in euery mans iudgement, and so in reason stand the more subiect to M. Bunis learned censure, to put out, cut of, mangle, change & pare away whatsoeuer it pleased him. Yet protesteth he forsooth, very solemly, That he allovveth vvel of the matter in general, and that he is glad that some of Ep. Dedi­cate. vs also, haue taken paines in this kinde of labour, and that others of our prosession are sometimes occupied in reading such bookes. As who would say, that this were a strange and rare matter in our behalfe, either to write or reade bookes of this quali­tie or argument.

But here I would demande of M. Buny in sincerite, where or when, any of his religion did either make or set forthe (of them selues) any one treatise of this kinde or subiect? I mea­ne, Only Ca­tholiques vvrite boo kes of deuo­tion. of deuotion pietie and contemplation? Of ours I can name infinite both of times past and present. As in times past S. Bernard, S. Bonauen­ture, S. Auselme, Iohn Gerson, Thomas de kem­pis, Dionisius Cathusianus, and others, whom no man wil deny to haue bene al of our reli­gion. For this time present, the most excellent writinges of Ludouicus de Granada, Diegostella, Po­lancus, Angerius, and this present booke with in­finite others, writen in this kinde doe testifie that this argument is not strange among Ca­tholiques, but rather proper and peculier vnto them alone, seing that M. Buny is not able to [Page] name one on his side, from the first heretique that cuer wrote, vnto this daie, which of his owne accorde hath employed him self in this subiect, except it were of enuie and malice to defile and corrupt an other mans labours, to the end they should not worke that good ef­fect, which otherwise they would, as M. Buny hath now done mine, and as one Rogers an other like companion (whom also he nameth) hath corrupted in englishe the most excellent [...] bookes. worke of Thomas de Kempis of the imitation of Christ, striking out without conscience, whatsoeuer he pleaseth; whereas the same booke before, was truly set forth in our natiue tongue by a Catholique. An other also of the same crue, hath vsed the like violence vnto the holie meditations of S. Augustin and Saint Bernard, putting out and in what liked him best, and making thos blessed men to speake like protestātes, against whom they were most opposite enimies.

The same hath M. Buny done vnto me, throughout my whole booke, and to most of the ancient Fathers therin named also, as after­ward shalbe declared. And this shameles shift of corrupting other mens bookes, is an old oc­cupation of heretiques from the beginning, as may appeare by the often complaintes of most ancient fathers, whos workes they were not ashamed to infect and corrupt whiles they were yet liuing. In respect of which impuden­cie the holie Apostle S. Paul, wel prophetied of them to his scholer Timothie, that they should haue, cauteriatam conscientiam, a seared and yron­burned cōscience. And againe; that they should 1. Tim. 4. sinne wilfully and damnably in their owne Tit. 3. knowledge and iudgement. So we reade that [Page 10] old heretiques aduentured to corrupt not only priuate mens workes and treatises; but also the holic Canons of general Councels them selues, wherof therwere so many witnesses yet liuing to controle them. This may appeare by the greuous complaint which holie Athanasius Athanas. apolog. 2. tp ad felic. made in his time against the Arians for cor­rupting the first Nicen Councel, and other fa­thers after him, for like heretical attemptes in their times; especially against the sacred text of diuine scripture, in corrupting whereof, al he­retiques from time to time haue bene most malepert, bold, and impudent, for shadowing their sectes with some shew of holie write.

And to the ende M. Buny may not here eskape, and tel his reader that this was a spirit That pro­testātes doe follovv the same spirit of corrup­ting. of heretiques in old time, and not to be found in the protestantes of thes daies: I doe referre him not only to the collections which diuers Catholiques of this age haue gathered against them, touching thes attemptes; but also to the testimonies, confessions, and accusatiōs of pro­testantes them selues, one against and other for like impudencie. Especially against the Sacra­mentaries, or thos that folowed th' opinion of Zuinglius (wherof I thinke M. Buny wil not deny him self to be one,) whom Martin Luther the father of al protestantes doth affirme, to be the most horrible corrupters of other mens bookes, that euer were; concluding his whole inuectiue against them with this sentēce, Their opinion of the Sacrament they began vvith lies, and Luth. in Lipist. ad Ioan. Her­uagium ty­pogra. Ar­gent. vvith lies they do desend the same; and they broch it abrode by the vvicked fraude of corrupting other mens bookes. The like he saieth and much more, of their corrupting the holie scriptures in diuers places.

[Page] But what? was Martin Luther him self ir­reprehensible The nevv brethrens testimonies, the one a­gainst the other. Zuing. li. de Sacra. fol. 412. 10. 2. Bez. in resp. ad defens. Castal. Itē in prae­fat. Test. an 1556. in this pointe, wherin he accu­seth so vehemently the Sacramentaries? No truly if we beleeue Zuinglius, who termeth him, both, A foule corruptour and horrible salsifier of Gods vvord, one that folovved the Marcionistes and Arians that rased out such places of holie vvrite as vvere against them. Beza accuseth Occolampa­dius together with al his brethren the diuines of Basile for great impietie ī abusing the sacred scriptures traslated by them. The like he doth, but with much more vehemencie against Ca­stalio, an other brother, affirming his dealing with holie scripture, to be both bold, pestilent, sa­crilegious and ethnical. Carolus Molineus was a brother also of the same blood, and yet he cō ­fesseth Mol in trá. Test. noni. part. 11. fol. 110. Item part. 64. 65. 66. 74. 99. of Caluin, That he made the text of the Gospel to leape vp and dovvne at his pleasure; that he vsed violence to the same, and added of his ovvne to the very sacred letter, for dravving it to his purpose. This same authour testifieth and crieth out of Beza, quod de facto [...] mutat, that actually he is not ashamed to change in his translations the very text of holie scripture, when it maketh against his purpose.

I might passe on further in stirring this euil sauoured sinke, of heretical iniquitie, discoue­red and moued by their owne brethren, (for such is alwaies the agreement of like mates) were it not that the matter it self is vnfit for thes pages, and the dealiag of M Buny with me in this booke, shal easilie dec are their spi­rit M. Bunies particuler dealing in editiō of the booke of re­solution. and practise, if nothing therin were alleaged besides. Now then I come to shewe how dex­terously he hath behaued him self in this edi­tion of my booke.

FIRST IN A L places wher conue­niently [Page 11] he maye, he maketh me speake after B V N. first deuise. To MAKE his aduersa­ries speake like Prote­stantes. the phrase of Protestantes; as for example, page 204. of his booke, wher I talke of Catholique preestes that heare confessions; he maketh me saie, men that be skilful to giue Counsail, &c. Againe page 229. wher I saie out of holie scripture, here hence doe proceede al thos large promises, to virgi­nitie, chastitie, voluntarie pouertie, &c. he maketh me saie; hence doe procede thos promises to mortifica­tion and nevvnes of life; & he striketh out the scri­ptures which I alleage for the other. In like maner page 368. when I saie, penance & satissa­ction. He maketh me saie, toile of amendment. And so in infinite other places (which were to long here to recite) M. Buny maketh me to speake like a good minister of England. Neither dea­leth he only thus with me; but ī like maner also with the ancient fathers, so long as by that meanes he can hold in with them, and when he can not, then he breaketh of and biddeth them a dieu.

Let one or two examples serue for al; page 374. he ronneth on a whole halfe lease with S. Augustine, turning euery wher the wordes pe­nance and satisfaction into repentance, vntil at S. Augu­stine taught to speake by M. Buny. légth S. Augustine saieth, that this penāce must be inioined to the penitent by the preest: and ther M. Buny leapeth ouer that, but yet after a line or two, ioineth with him familiarly a­gaine, and so runneth on, vntil he cometh to an other blocke, that cā not be remoued, wher he is inforced againe to leape ouer. So in like ma­ner page 209. wher S. August. recounteth the storie of S. Antonie the monke of Egipt; M. Buny leaueth out the name Monke, and tea­cheth S. Augustine to say; S Antonie that had pro­fessed a priuate and solitarie life in Egipt. And then [Page] wher S. Augustin writeth, that ther vvas a Mona­sterie of the same monkes, norished by S. Ambrose vvithout the vvalles of Millan; M. Buny maketh him to leaue out the names of Monkes & Mo­nasterie, as also the name and almes of S. Am­brose, & to say onlie that others (as he then heard) did the like, euen in Millan it self. And finally, he frameth euery mans speech (wher he can) to such a stile as though he had bene trained vp in Iohn Caluins schole.

SECONDLY, when he hath not commo­ditie to change the very wordes, or els dareth BVNY se­cond de­uise. To INSERT parenthe­ses. not for that they are scripture: then seeketh he to salue the matter with inserting some paren­thesis, as though the same were of th' authour him self. So page 39. I say, that our Sauiour be­ing demanded by a certaine prince, how he might be saued; would geue him no other hope albeit he were a prince, but, if thou vvilt enter into life, kepe the commandementes. Wher M. Buny hel­peth Math. 18. Marc 10. Luc. 19. the matter out with this parenthesis, say­ing; He vvould geue him no other hope (so long as he sought saluation by his vvorkes) but keepe the com­mandementes, &c. As though this prince had sought his saluation erroniously, & that Christ had answered him in his error, & so deceaued him. In like maner page 229. wher I alleage out of S. Paul and out of the reuelations, that men shalbe crowned in heauen according to their 2. Tim. 2. Apoc. 2. fight in this life: M. Buny bodgeth in this pa­renthesis (in some good measure) therby to li­mite the Holie Ghost in his meaning. Sembla­bly, page 229. when I alleage plainly the wor­des of scripture, No man knovveth vvhether he be vvorthie of loue or hatred in Gods sight. He addeth Eccle. 9. this parenthesis (by outward things) as who would say, that by inward things ech man [Page 12] might know the same, which the Holie Ghost in this place did not forsee.

THIRDLY when he can not accōmodate BVN. third shift. MAROI­nal annota­tions of di­uers fortes. the matter ether by changing the wordes, or by putting in a parenthesis; then maketh he often­times certaine amotations in the margent; wherof certaine be idle and foolish, some be ridiculous and absurd, and other be wicked and tending to impietie.

Of the first kinde, you may see examples page 171. wher, for that I saie, that our natu­ral Annotatiōs fonde. passions moderated, may serue vs to vertue; he maketh a longe and fond annotation, that we doe hold that the soule doth follow the temperature of the body, and thervpon doe grounde that our Lady was borne without ori­ginal sinne; and other such docttines, which is neither so no so; nor the good man vnder­standeth what he saieth in this point nor what we hold, albeit (if you will beleeue him) he hath studied the schoelmen. Page 228. wher I saie that ther was no reason in our fight, whie al­mightie God should so much abuse his owne only sonne in this world, as to suffer so many indignities as he did: this man saith in a mar­gical note, that ther vvas great reason in it. And so consequently, doth bring the inscrutable mi­sterie of the sonne of God his abasement, (wherat S. Paul so often times wondered, and wherat the very Angels remaine astonished;) within the compasse of humane wit & reason, which euery simple man by nature may com­prehend.

Of the second kinde, which are absurde, you may finde examples page 153. wherby a mar­ginal 2. Annotatiōs absurd. note he discrediteth the beleefe of S. Cy­prian about the knowledge, that we shal haue [Page] of our fathers, mothers, and other acquaintan­ce in heauen; as though one Cyprian with Christian men of reason, weighed not more in the affaires of our soule, then ten coople of Bunis, were they neuer so vendible. So againe page 214. vpon the religious rule of life which S. Augustine reporteth to haue bene reuealed to his mother for him to follow, M. Buny wri­teth, That it vvas but a more careful indeuour in the Aug. lib.8. confes. cap. 12. vvay of godlines. And page 212. he addeth to the same, That it vvas but such, as vve al (saieth he) are bound vnto. But yet he that shal reade either S. Augustine him self, or els Possidonius his scholler declaring the particulers of that rule, Possid. in vita Aug. which he saw S. Augustine obserue in life, and prescribe vnto others: he wil easily confesse (I thinke) that how soeuer the ministers of England may be bounde therunto by M. Bunis word in this annotation, yet that they doe ob­serue but few partes therof in conuersation: especially touching wiuing, I am of opinion, that M. Buny wil not denie S. Augustins rule to containe some-what more, thē he and his fel­lowes at this day doe practise. To like fond absurditie appertaineth that which is noted by him, page 300. wher I affirming that Gods se­cret iudgement of ech mans particuler pre­destination, is vncertaine to vs, he noteth in the margent, that calling and iustifying are very plaine and infallible tokens therof, and so far is it not vncer­taine to the faithful; as who would saie, that it were an easie mater for him that hath faith, to know who are so called or iustified, as is re­quisite to assure a man of his particuler prede­stination: whereas notwithstanding, Christ saith of the first, that many are called vvhich are not cho­sen, and of the second, S. Paul saith in him self [Page 13] that he vvas guiltie of nothing, and yet therby he vvas not iustified.

Of the third kinde of annotations, which 3. Annota­tions vvic­ked. are both wicked & impious, ther might many examples be alleaged, but thes few insuing shal suffise to discouer M. Bunies spirite. First then, page 212. as concerning the life of that holie and most wonderful man S. Antonie the first monke of AEgipt, whom al antiquitie so much Athanas. in vita Anton. Aug lib. 8. cōfes. c. 12. admired, and whom S. Athanafius in writing his life, so highely extolled, and whos doinges S. Augustin so hartely reuerenced, as he made the same a principal motiue & paterne to his owne conuersion; (especially for that he tooke thos wordes of our Sauiour, Goe and sel al thou Mat. 19. hast and geue to the poore, as spoken to him self in particuler:) vpon this mans conuersion (I say) & most wonderful life, M. Buny maketh this scor­neful & irreligious note, that it may vvel be doub­ted, Against S. Antonie. vvhether he had in that place sufficient ground­vvorke of thos his doings, vnles he had some other special motion besides. Condemning herin not only S. An­tonie, but also S. Athanasius, S. Hierome, S. Au­gustine & al other fathers, that so highely com­mend S. Antonie for putting in execution thos wordes of our Sauiour.

To like purpose or rather more vvickedlie, he maketh an other annotation page 308. vpon Against S. Augustine. the most famous conuersion of S. Augustin re­corded by the pen of that holy father him self, to vvit, that some pointes of the storie vvhich S. Augu­stin vvriteth, are such, as a man may as vvel doubt they proceeded of Sathan as of God; therby to bring in question that excellent mans cōuersion. But of al other, that annotation of his, is most ridieu­lous Against our B. [...] die. and yet blasphemous, wher he wil needes bring in our blessed Ladie to haue brokē fower [Page] seueral commandemēts (forsooth) at one clap­pe, for that she defended not her sonne vpō the Crosse. For, page 369. wher I in commendation of the confessiō which the theefe made, said in my booke, that it was at such a time, when al the world abādoned our Sauiour, and the very Apostles thē selues either doubted or lost their faith of his Godhead: this man noteth in the margēt, that the blessed Virgin likevvise vvas by, and saied nothing (that vve reade of) in his defence: a plaine breach (saieth he) of the first, fist, sixt, & ninth cōmando­mentes. A strange matter, that thes men should be so desirous to skore vp & make Catalogues of our Ladies sinnes which she neuer commit­ted. But let vs see with what shew of reason.

He saith that she brake fower commandementes at one time; Let vs then examine them what they are. The first commandemēt (accor­ding Aug. quest. 71. in Exo. & con. 1. in Psal. 32. as S. Augustine in old time, & Catholiques now a daies are accustomed to number them) is; Thou shalt haue no strāge Godes before me, nor make vnto thy self any grauen Idole to adore the same. The fift is, Thou shalt not kil. The sixt, Thou shalt not commit adulterie. The ninth, Thou shalt not couet thy neighbours wife. And this, as Catholiques doe number the commandementes. But according as some protestantes wil recon the same, The fift is, Honor thy father & thy mother. The sixt, Thou shalt not kil. The ninth, Thou shalt not beare false vvitnes against thy neighbour. Now thē (gentle rea­der) consider with indifferencie, how in reason Great ab­surditie & impietie of M. Buny. it may be said, that the blessed Virgin, the sa­cred mother of God, for not defending her sonne vpon the Crosse, against the Magistrates & soldiers, did breake any of thes fower com­mandementes; that is to say, did either make vnto her self any strange God or Idole, or did [Page 14] dishonour her father and mother; or did cōmit Maruelous absurdities. murder or adulterie; or did beare false witnes against her neighbour; or did couet her neigh­bours mate; whether (I say) it be credible, that in not defending her sonne at that instant, she committed any one of thes hainous & mortal crimes, and much more, whether she cōmitted fower of them together, as M. Buny affirmeth? Let (I say) the indifferent and Christian reader iudge of this accusation, as also consider, whe­ther M. Bun. the. diuels pro­ctor. M. Buny be not worthio of a very good fee at the deuils hādes, for indeuoring to bring into his clawes, so rich a pray, as was the most excellēt pure & sacred mother of our Sauiour, by accusing her of fower deadlie sinnes toge­ther?

AND THVS much of annotations; pas­sing ouer diuers other thinges that might be BVN. third snift. THEV­sting out. examined if time and place did not prohibite. But the greatest shift of al others which M. Buny hath to ridde his handes, when nether changing of the wordes, not putting in of pa­reutheses, nor annotations in the margent wil cleare and pacific the matter; is, to strike and thrust out what so euer he misliketh, whether they be my wordes, or els the discourses of an­cient fathers, yet authorities them selues of sa­cred scripture. For vnderstanding wherof it is to be cōsidered, that first, generally whersoeuer he findeth the mētion of certaine thinges that please him not, as of abstinence, fasting, chaste­sing the bodie, penance, satisfaction, virginitie, merit, hier, gayning of heauen, laboring for re­ward, or the like: he commonly striketh al out together with th' Authours that treat therof, or els so mangleth the same as is pitiful to behold.

Secōdly whatsoeuer authoritie commeth in [Page] his way, which he cānot mangle, out it goeth Impudent dealing in striking out. Monkes. without redēption, be it Father, Doctor, Coun­sel or Scripture. Herof you may see exāples, Page 29. of his booke, wher he thrusteth out S. Hie­rome and Ioannes Cassianus, for that they mē ­tiō Mōkes of the primatiue Church. So againe page 98. he thrusteth out S. Cyprian & Possido­nius, for that they geue testimonie of an appa­ritiō Apparitiōs of Christ. which Christ our Sauiour made to a godly man at his death. In like maner, Page 109. he trusteth out S. Ambros, S. Augustin, S. Gregorie and S. Bernard together, for that they persuade men by their examples to be affeard of Purga­torie. Further, Page 98. he striketh out S. Augu­stin. Purgatorie. S Gregorie and venerable Bede, with their large discourses which they make concerning appatitions of certaine Angels to godlie peo­ple. So againe, Page 305. he thrusteth out the Apparitiōs of Angels. exāple of S. Paul the first heremite with the au­thoritie of S. Hierome that wrote his life. And this in hatred of Monkes and heremites. After Neremites. that againe, Page 374. he thrusteth out S. Augu­stin with al that he cā alleage about satissactiō Satisfactiō. Penance. and final penance. Page 60. he thrusteth out the weping, fasting, watching, lying on the ground, wearing of sack clothe and other bodilie pu­nishmētes Bodily af­fliction. that King Dauid vsed vpon him self, albeit they be recorded and set downe in holie scripture. Page 169. he thrustath out the exāple of S. Paul th' Apostle how he was assisted & made 2. Cor. 12. able by Gods holie grace, to resist & ouercome the temptatiōs of the flash, to the end (by like) Resisting of temptatiōs. that no man should take courage by that exā ­ple, to fight & resist thes temptations as he did. Page 2. he striketh out the promisses made in scripture to virginitie, chastetie, golding of Promisses to Virginitis. our selues for the kingdome of heauen, volun­tarie [Page 15] pouertie and the like: al (I say) he thru­steth out, together with the scripture alleaged for the same. And finally, not to hold the reader any longer in the enumeratiō of thos thinges, which he shal finde almost in euery other leafe of the booke: Page 157. he thrusteth out not only S. Augustin talking of the price of heauē, and of the facilitie to gaine the same; but also striketh out in like maner the very wordes of Christes vvordes thrust out by M. Buny. Mat. 11. Christ him self, saying, the kingdome of heauen doth suffer violence, & men doe lay handfast vpon it by force. And what may be said then (gentle reader) of thes mē, who spare neither Fathers, Doctours, Prophetes, Apostles, nor Christ him self, when they stand in the way against their foolis he herefies?

AND THIS of thrusting out. But now if OF man­gling. OTHER mens say­ings. I would speake of mangling. I might say much more, but that this place beareth it not, and therfore thous halt be content (good reader) to accept of one example only among infinite that might be alleaged, and by this one, thou maist make vnto thy self some certaine conie­cture of the rest. Page 367. it is handled and proued by me against the impedimēt of delay, how that vvee by deferring our cōuersion, doe alwaies binde our selues to greater penance & satisfaction afterwardes, &c. In which discour­se, M. Buny first in steed of the worde, Penāce, vseth alwaies the worde, repētance, (as though al were one) and so runneth on smoothly so long as it wil hold out. And as for the worde Satisfaction, for that he had no other word to put in for it, he thrusteth it cleane out. Then commeth he to S. Cyprian, who saith that, a di­ligint Cyp. lib. de laps. & l. 5. epist. 9. ad Corn. and long medicine is to be vsed to a deepe sore; which wordes M. Buny admitteth and setteth [Page] downe as good and currant. But the other part of the sentēce immediatly following, was, that The mea­sare of pe­nance. our penance must be no lesse thē vvas our fault cōmitted, which part M. Buny striketh out of the text, as also al the rest ensuing, wherin S. Cyprian pres­cribeth, that this penance must be made with teares, watching, wearing of hear-cloth, & the like, which seeme to be thinges nothing plea­sant to the bodie of a Minister.

After S. Cyprian followeth S. Augustin in the very same page, affirming; That it is not sufficient for a sinner, to change his maners, & to leaue of to sinne, except he make satisfaction also to God for his sinnes past by sororrful penance, geuing of almes &c. With which wordes M. Buny would haue nothing to doe, for that they were incorrigible, & therfore he' thrust thē quite out: yet out of S. Hierome, that in the third place insued, he was content to admit thes wordes, Our bodie that hath liued in many delightes must be chastised vvith affliction; our Hier. ep. 27 ad Lustoch. long laughing must be recōpenced vvith much vveping. But the wordes immediatly following in the same seutence, (our soft linning and fine silke apparel must be changed into sharpe hear-cloth) seemed to harde to this delicate doctour, and therfore he thrust them quite out.

In the end of the ranke, came graue S. Am­bros, affirming, That vnto a great vvound, a deepe Intollera­ble dealing. & long medicine in needful; Which wordes M. Bu­ay very quietly and courteously let passe. But vpon th' other that immediatly followed, he gaue a deade blow, & thrust them by head & shoulders out of the booke, to wit, Grāde seelus, grādē necessariā habet satisfactionē. A great offence, requireth of necessitie a great satisfaction. Ambros. ad virg. Laps. cap. 8.

Now thē (gentle reader) what shal we thinke or say of thes mē or of their maner of dealing? [Page 16] Haue they honest meaning trow you? Haue A conside­ration vpon the premis­ses. they sidelitie? Haue they a conscience? Haue they respect of God or man, that deale in this order? Is it hard to found any new religiō, or to defend it, or to auouch what folie or falsaood soeuer, by this maner of proceeding? If thes mē had habilitie to doe what their consciences would permit thē in the world abrod, what an alteration, what a subuersiō, what a metamor­phosis would they make in al matters of anti­quitie? If they had to them selues the setting forth of the holy fathers & doctours workes, how would they loppe and circumcise the sa­me? how would they set them foorth in their Ierkins, yea, barehose and doubletes, cutting of al other garmentes and furniture that liked thē not, or were not sutable to the season of thes mens senses? If thes men (I say) had the keeping of al antiquities, of fathers, Councels, and scrip­tures, & that to thē selues alone in their owne custodie, without the knowledge or cōtradi­ction of any one Catholique, for the space of only fiue hundred yeares together, (as they graunt we held thē al in our handes for a thou­sand,) what maner of bookes (trow you) should we finde them? How currant and absolute for the protestant religiō? No doubt but we should heare thē speake euē as Iohn Caluin speaketh in al matters of controuersie, or rather as that good man for the time would haue them to speake, vnto whos handes the last edition of such workes should be committed.

And thus much shal suffice for discouerie of M. Bunies editiō of my booke, now remaineth ther only a word or two to be saide of the treatise which he adioined, tēding (as he saith) to Pacification.

Of M. Bunies Pacification.

AND first of al, a man would thinke that M. Buny did take but a very strange way to pacification, in offering me the greate iniurie which before hath bene shewed, in his editiō. But for that he pretendeth his peace to be to­wardes the general, by labouring the aduersaries, as his phrase is: I shal be content to passe ouer my particuler, and to examine peaceably what he saieth, and how he laboreth vs to that effect.

But here againe at the very first enterance, ther riseth a new stoppe against al vnion or pa­cification with vs, for that he is so singulerly persuaded of the rare light and knowledge of truth which they haue alone among them sel­ues, as he dareth to pronounce, That (to their knovvledge) God neuer yet bestovved the like on others. Intollera­ble pride of beretiques. In which asseueratiō for that he excepteth nei­ther the fathers or doctours of the primatiue Church, nor yet th' Apostles them selues, whom we hoped to haue had at least wise for iudges and arbiters in making this peace: what proba­bilitie can ther be of vnion or composition a­mōg vs, seing that at the very first word, he ma­keth his cause better, not only then ours, but also then the case and condition of any other whatsoeuer, since Christes departure frō earth or before? But yet this I wil let passe also, as a vaunt proceeding of an humour peculier to mē of his stampe. For if you goe to al the petie se­ctes of thes our times, or of any other times that haue bene from the beginning: ech one wil sing the self same song, affirming euery other bodies candel to be out, but only theirs. And if they should not say so, they were not sectes or sectaries, for that they acknowledged [Page 17] not their true mother, which is pride, and sin­gularitie.

After this his proud enterāce, he beginneth, his seely discourse: and for methodes sake, ma­keth many diuisions and subdiuisions, euery thing running therin by couples, wherin he is so fertile and abundant, as by methode he con­foundeth al memorie. But yet as I may, I wil here recite the cheef pointes therof.

First then he saith, that ther is great reasō why we should ioine with them, and none at al why they should yeld to vs. The first he proueth, for that it becommeth the Church of God to be at VVhy vve should ioine vvith pro­testantes. vnitie in it self. Which reason how far it pro­ueth his purpose, the reader can consider. The second he declareth, for that the gaine that they should receaue by comming to vs, in his opinion should be very smal, both touching VVhy they vvil not ioine vvith vs. matters of religion as also of state. For in reli­gion he maketh his accompt, that they should haue nothing more thē now they haue, except only certaine Sacramentes, Images, and cere­monies (which he calleth representations,) al which he esteemeth of smale auaile. In mat­ters of state likewise, he supposeth the com­modities would be few and litle: as namely to be deliuered from the Popes curse, which he saieth, they finde now by experience, not to be so hurtful, as hertofore it was esteemed; which reason (as you know) may as wel serue against Godes curse also, for that it doth not al­waies shew forth presently his sensible effect.

Next after this, he declareth how that by Their hur­tes in yel­ding to vs. yelding to vs, they should not only not recea­ue gaine, but also great hurtes, & that in double maner. First in religion, wherin among other things they should be bounde to coafession & [Page] penance, which thinges (saith he) are burdensome and So much the more cer­taine to pro­ceede of gra­ce and of Gods special ordinance, for that othervvise men vvould neuer haue receaued thē. abhorring from mans nature. Then in state, for that by this meane, they should come vnder the gouernement of the Byshope of Rome, which he estemeth intolerable: adding further, that this only reason of state holdeth many of their side, from comming to vs, who otherwise in conscience would-haue no scrupule at al; which is such a confessiō, as I meruail that euer my Lord Archebishope would let it passe in print. For howsoeuer this poore Minister to terrifie the common people, deuiseth bugges vpō the Ecclesiastical authoritie of the bishope Note this. of Rome, if it should be restored in England againe, yet euery man of reason can consider with him self, that the Emperour, the kinges of Spaine, France, Polonia and other Princes, ad­mitting the-same authoritie, doe finde no such incōueniēces, as neither our Princes of Englād euer did, for so many ages together, when they were more potent and glorious then they haue bene since the suppression therof. Wherfore if this reason only doe stay so many from vs, as M. Buny affirmeth, it is very like we shal haue the greater part shortly, when God shal open their vnderstanding in a matter that in it self is so plaine and palpable.

This being done, he commeth to shew the cōmodities that we should receaue by ioining with them, and thos also (after his maner) he The cōmo­dities offe­red to vs in ioining vvith thē. maketh of two sortes. First in religion, and thē in our ciuil state. In religiō (saith he) we should first receaue, the free vse of holie seriptures, (as though amōg vs now ther were no vse therof,) and then also we should be deliuered from the burden of confession and penance, as also from religion. al vowes of chastitie, pouertie, and obedience. [Page 18] And finally we should so cleaue to Christ alone (saith he) as vve should abandon al other helpes both in heauen and earth, of Angels, Saintes, other men, as also our ovvne. Which (saith he) were a great ad­uantage. And then he maketh a solemne prote­station in thes wordes. If any people can be found The Proto­stantes pro­testation. in the vvorld, that doe more abādone al other meanes in heauen & earth, then vve doe, then vve must pronounce against our selues, that in this respect they are nerer to this aduantage then vve art. Vnto which protesta­tion notwithstanding, I doubt M. Buny (if he should be wel vrged) would be very much ashamed to stand and cleaue. For albeit I con­fesse, that he and his felowes doe very litle in deede wherby to helpe them selues by their workes, yet by this reason they should doe far better, ī doing nothing at al. For he that should neuer pray, nor desire other men to pray for him, he that should neuer fast or doe other good deede, but should rather defie the same, and lay al vpon Christes passiō, he should more abandone al other helpes and meanes both in heauen and earth besides Christ, then many of the best protestantes doe.

Next in our ciuil state, he saith that we should greatly be bettered by ioyning with Cōmodities by yelding, in our ciuil state. them, being made partakers of the blessednes of England, which is greater (as he saith) at this time, then euer it vvas since the lande vvas first inhabited. Wherof he seemeth to alleage two reasons or causes. First, for that Protestantes in Intellerable lying flat­terie. thes temporal affaires are alwaies prosperous, for (saith he) how soeuer it goe with others that are not frindes to the ghospel, yet shal the fauorers therof alwaies Hovv doe they pro­sper at this day in Frā ­ce and Flā ­ders? prosper: howsoeuer it be with the residue of the children of Israel, yet the tribe of Iuda shal alwaies florish. The [Page] other places the people are going vnder their burdens, but in England al is mirth and saftie. The second cause of this blessednes of England is, for that England (saith he) is gouerned by a Prince of their owne countrie, one that dealeth mildly with them, one that sendeth not ther pleas abrod to other cōsistories, one that drieth them not vp with exactions. And when conue­nient collections are made, the mony that is exacted of subiectes is not sent (saith he) Note this blessednes. out of the realme to the maintenance of forraine powers, but is imployed at home, to their ho­nour and defence. Wherin notwithstanding it seemeth that this good man, talketh rather by meditation or fiction, then by any great intelli­gence he hath in such affaires.

After al this, he goeth about to remoue certaine graue impedimentes, which he ima­gineth The remo­uing of im­pediments. doe let many Catholiques from coming vnto their side. For which cause he sheweth, first, that we Catholiques should not leese al­together our credites by making vs Protestan­tes, or at least wise we should not leeso the sa­me Of discre­dit. with them that be good and of their side: or if we did somewhat impare the same, yet patiēce were to be vsed, for the Ghospels sake. In like maner he sheweth that the holie sain­tes of heauen would not be angrie with vs (as we seeme to doubt) for leauīg their patronage. Also that keruers, kandlemakers, belcasters, or­ganistes, and other such like, who might feare Of hurtes. to want by following the Ghospel, albeit in truth they should leese no smale part of their gaine, yet might the matter be eased, and they comforted otherwise.

Thus discourseth this wise man in very great sadues. And after al this, he hādleth diuers other [Page 19] pointes both of controuersies in religion, & of the harde dealings of the Protestant magistra­te towardes Catholiques in Englād, wherwith he supposeth many are staied from comming vnto them, but al, with as great discretion and foundation as he hath done the former, de­manding of vs in very good earnest, why we should stand so much vpon Limbus Patrum, vpon Christes descending into hel, vpō real pre­sence, freedome of wil, and merit of workes, vpon traditions, preestood, and sacrifice, vpon worshiping of Saintes and Images, mariage of preestes, inherent iustice, and the fiue Sacramē ­tes that we numbre more then they doe? why (I saie) we should so relie and sticke vpon thes thinges, as for their sakes not to ioyne with thē and be Protestantes, wheras notwithstanding al thes thinges, the Protestātes saith (as he saith) Atheisme. and ours is al one in substance, and we al are members of one true Catholique and Apo­stolique Churche, albeit some of vs be some­what better members in that Church then others.

And this last point of the Church (therby Hovv by N. Buny vve are al of one Church. to allure vs the more) he vrgeth very often and earnestly: to wit, that we are al members of one true Church, reprehending greatly his fellow Ministers and brethren, who, vpon in­discrete Zeale (as he saith) vrged first this separa­tion, and did vvrite in not so sensed a maner as they Page 108. ought to haue done, adding further; vve are to iu­stifie that of departing from the Church, ther ought to be no question at al among vs. But what is the cause (thinke you) of this so greate and sud­daine curtesie which now at length M. Buny against al custome of his brethren doth offer vnto vs? you shal heare it vttered (if you plea­se) [Page] in his owne wordes, for by cons [...]ing so far vvith them (saieth he) as to graunt that vve are not both of one Church; vve bring our selues to needles trouble. For that it is greate probabilitie vvith them, that so vve make our selues aunsvverable for to finde out a seueral and distinct Church from them, from vvhich vve descende, vvhich hath continued from the Apostles age to this present, els that needes vve must acknovvledge that our Church is sprung vp of late, or at least, since thers: This is his confession; which VVhy pro­testātes are novv so kinde as to make atto­nement vvith vs. we hauing heard, we neede not stande any longer in doubt, wherfore he is become so kinde, as at length to make vs al of one true Catholique and Apostolique Church with them, whom hitherto they haue detested as the Sinagogue of Antechrist. Why also M. Buny tooke in hande to write this treatise of pacification, to wit, for that in deede (as he confessed before) He novv perceaueth that men held vvith them, rather for respect of state and ciuil commodities, then of conscience and beleefe. Which The only motiue to protestant religion in England. regarde of temporal commoditie in very truth (Gentle reader) is the only reason or baite that they can lay before vs at this time, wher­by to moue vs to come vnto their parte. Which respect and motiue notwithstanding, our Lord knoweth how bare and brickle a matter it is, and how longe or litle while it may endure. But this only thing set a side, in al other respectes, reasons, allurementes, moti­ues, or considerations, which heauen or earth can yeld, wherby to stirre a Christian minde to embrace any religion, they are al for vs, and none for them; as perhaps hereafter may be declared more largelie, in some special trea­tisse, which by occasion of this may be taken in hand. In the meane space let this suffice for [Page 20] answere of so much as M. Buny hath writen in his pacification.

Of this present edition vvith certaine instructions to the Reader.

THER remaineth now then (gentle rea­der) for the ending of this preface, to ad­monish the only in a worde or two, what thou hast in this later edition more then in the former, and how thou maist reape the com­moditie that is intended and wished to the therin. First, the whole booke hath bene re­uewed, and both amplified and bettered in di­uers 1. The vvhole booke re­uevved. pointes throughout al the chapters that doe remaine as before. Secondly, the title ther­of is altered as may appeare in the beginning for that the other booke of Christian exercise, 2. The title altered. since the first edition therof, hath bene set fo­orth a parte by it self.

Thirdly, diuers treatises and chapters haue bene wholy altered, especially in the first 3. Diuers treatisses altered. part, wher, vpon a purpose of greate breuitie which in the beginning was conceaued, (but afterwardes could not be held) many things were shifted ouer, and diuers discourses knit vp with more imperfection then in the second part therof.

Fourthly, sundrie new chapters and trea­tises haue bene added in this edition. And thes 4. Nevv chapters added and vvhy. partly of mine own liking, imagining that the matter might (perhappes) affect other men as much as it did me; among which I may accompt the chapter of examples of true re­solution, and some other: Partely also vpon aduertisement of good and reuerend Catho­lique preestes that liue in England, who fin­ding [Page] by their experience in dealing with mens soules, (as my self also did,) that this long time of schisme and sectes, wherein they heare nothing but weangling and contradi­ctions in matters of courtouersies, (their life in the meane space running at al libertie without discipline, and loding their conscien­ces with infinite burden of sinne;) hath wroght in mens mindes a certaine contempt and car­les insensibilitie in thes affaires, esteeming al things to stand vpon probabilitie only of dis­pute to and fro, and so by litle and litle, doth The gre­uous temp­tations of faith that come by he­resie. bring them also to thinke the same of Chri­stian religion it self, imagining that the Ie­wes, Turkes, Saracens and other enimies ther­of, (being worldly wise men) may haue as greate reason perhaps to stande against the same, as thes later learned men of oar owae time haue, to staud in so many rankes and di­uisions of sectes against the Catholique faith, and as the old Philosophers pretended to haue against the being of one God him self.

Thes thinges (I saie) being so; (which is alwaies the effect of diuision and heresie,) thos vertuous and discrete men were of opinion The reason of particu­ler chapters added of nevv. that it should not be amisse in this second edi­tion to adioyne two chapters of the certaintie of one God, and of our Christian faith and reli­gion. Besides this, I was admonished by the writinges of our aduersaries since the pu­blishing of my first edition, how they misliked two principal pointes in that booke. First, that I speake so much of good workes and so litle of faith: secondly, that I talked so largely of Godes iustice and so breefly of his mercie. In both which pointes, albeit an indifferent man might haue bene satisfied before, and easilie [Page 21] perceaue that the aduersarie doth but picke quarels of calumniation: yet to giue more ful contentement in this matter, euen vnto our enemies: I haue besides that which is spoken els wher, (and namely in the 2. and 4. chapters touching faith,) adioyned also a special chap­ter of the two seueral partes of Christian profession, which are beleefe and life. And for the second, I haue framed a whole new cha­pter in the begiuning of the second part, inti­tuled; against dispaire of Godes mercie. Thos were the causes of my large and ample addi­tions in this booke.

And yet was ther besides al thes, one cause more, which also I conceaued by information An other cause of the amplificatio of tins bo­oke. of others. An I this was, that diuers persons (as I was tolde) hauing desire in them selues to reade the former booke, but yet being weake and feartul to be touched so nere in conscien­ce, as they imagined this booke would doe; durst neuer intermedle therwith, being infor­med that ther was nothing in the same wher­with to intertaine them selues, but only such vehement matter of persuasiō, as would troble and afflict thom. For remedie of which incon­ueniencie (if it were an inconueniencie,) I haue inserted diuers chapters and discourses of mat­ters more plausiole, and of them selues more indifferent, whervvith the reader may solace his minde, at such times as he findeth the same not willing to feele the spurre of more earnest motion to perfection.

And to the end he may the better be able to serue him self at al times and to al purposes, The reason of the me­thode ad­ioined in the ende. of whatsoeuer is contayned within this booke; I haue thought good to set downe in the end of al, a short draught or methode for [Page] the particuler vse of euery part and parcel therof; how it may sorue either to prayer or meditation, or els to instruction, exhortation, consolation, or other effect according to the time and place, or to the neede, state, condition & other qualetie, of the person that shal come to reade the booke.

Now then (good reader and my deare Christian brother) hauing nothing els at this time to admonishe the of; I wil end this pre­face The conclu­sion vvith certaine in­structions. and remit the to the reading of the booke it self that followeth; exhorting the most ear­nestly for thine owne soules sake in the tender bowels of our sweet Sauiour IESVS, that thou reade the same with attention, as matter that appertaineth nearest of al other vnto the, and with al to yeld most hartie and humble thākes to almightie God, that in his Catholique Church fayleth not from time to time to sende diuers strange and stronge meanes, whereby to stirre vp men to consideration of their estate, and to the gayne of their saluation in the life to come. This (I say) by almightie Gods diuine goodnes and prouidence, is ordinarie in his True trea­ting of de­motion only in the Ca­tholique Church. spouse the Catholique Church, wher his spirit abideth vntil the worldes end: and it is so in her alone, as it is her proper and peculier posses­sion, and neuer trulie to be founde in them, who liue out of her, albeit for a time and in some pointes they maye haue a shewe or shadoe therof. This we see fulfilled in al he­retiques and sectaries both of old and of our daies, who albeit some times they wil seeme to writ bookes, of institutions to manners and good life; yet their doctrine therin being as wilde, as their faith is wandering; they neuer bring any thing to passe, but from worse to worse, [Page 22] wherof the whole world at this daye doth giue experience. The reason of this in general, VVhy no heretique treateth sincerly of deuotion. may be taken from the nature and spirit of heretiques, described vnto vs for our admo­nishment in holie scripture, wherof one prin­cipal point is, that they shalbe as S. Paul saith, Sine pace, without al rest or peace, and conse­quently, 2. Tim. 3. alvvaies learning and neuer attaining to the knowledge of truth. They shal bestow al their time in iangling and quarreling, and in the meane space, as S. Peter wel noteth, they shal vvalke according to their ovvne concupiscences, albeit 2. Pet. 3. they talke neuer so much of mortification and of their quickning spirite, for which cause he calleth them also, illusores, mockers and deceauers; that is, as S. Paul seemeth to interprete the same; fellovves that vvith seigned vvordes shal make their ovvne gaine, and vvhich hauing a shevv of pietie, shal (in life) deny the force or vertue thereof.

And this why heretiques in general can neither teach true pietie and deuotion, not VVhy pro­testantes of alother se­ctaries can not teach true pietie. yet giue example therof in their owne liues. But now if we looke into the particuler sectes that are of this our most vnhappie time; we shal finde a more peculier reason why they in special, much lesse may doc the same. For that in truth the very groundes of their opinions doc resist altreating of such affaires; neither can you vrge almost any one point of true pietie, but that [...] must impugne some prin­cipal article of their doctrine. As may ap­peare by that which hath bene declared be­fore, concerning the places both of fathere and scriptures thrust out by M. Buny in my former booke, wherof also it were not hard to make diuers most cuident demonstrations in this place.

[Page] For, if (for example sake) you exhort men to labour for their owne saluation, as S. Paul Examples bovv prote­stantes can not teach piesie of life vvithout imparing their doc­trine. did, Philip. 2. ver. 12. then you teach them to put confidence in their owne workes, which with protestantes is abhominable. If you en­courage men to suffer in respoct of rewarde, as Christ did, Matth. 5. ver. 12. then fal you flatly vpon the doctrine of merite. If you tel them that heauen is put in their owne han­des to gaine, as our Sauiour did, Math. 11. ver. 12. then allow ye not only of morite, but also of free wil. If you wish men to liue in feare and trembling in respect of Gods secret iudge­ments, and of the vncertaintie of our salua­tion, as S. Paul did, Phi. 2. ver. 12. Hob. 3. ver. 14. and S. Peter. 2. ep. 3. ver. 17. then impeach you the certaintie of protestantes predestination. If you counsail men to make amendes by good workes forth [...]: euil life past, as S. Iohn Baptist did, Luke 3. ver. 8. then you reach sa­tisfaction. If you terrifie them with the feare of hel, and with the declaration of the pai­nes in the world to come, as Christ did, Math. 8. ver. 12. then with them you offer iniurie to Gods infinit mercie. If you exhort men to fa­sting, praying, loue of virginitie, desire of po­uertie, chastesing their own bodies, restitutió, penance, and the like, as al the course of holie scripture doth: then runne you into plaine and open papistrie.

And then (deare Christian brother) what treating can ther be of pietic in life, wher No effect of verme sollovveth vpon the prating of protestants. none of thes important matters may be once named? Truly (good brother) wel may a man vainlie talke in the aire of a quick ening spi­rite and mstrification, as they are wonte in pasti­me to doe; but nothing in sinceritie-wil euer be [Page 23] brought to passe, where thes weightie pointes be not soundly and seriously handled. For take away the mention of thes thinges forth of holie scripture it self, together with the large and frequent exhortations that therin are made vnto them; and very litle wil remai­ne about other affaires; the cheefe indeuour of Gods holie spirit being bent (as is manifest) to the setting forthe and inculcating of thes matters, aboue al other, vnto Christian peo­ple.

Which spirit of almightie God, the Ca­tholique Church his holie and deare spouse, The spirit of the Ca­tholique Church. taking vpon her to imitate; after the foun­dation of true faith once laide, calleth vpon her children both daily and hourly by infinit wayes and mianes, to remember and put in vre thes pointes of vertuous life, while her enimies in the meane space, doe lye wrangling and cauiling about contradictions in beleefe. And therfore in the Catholique Churche onlie (gentle reader) shalt thou finde the true spirite of teaching, and of exe­cution of thes pointes touching pietie: within the lappe and bosome wherof if thou alredy be, thou hast humbly and hartely to thanke God for the same, and with al sollicitous di­ligence and care to make thy gaine of such helpes as she offereth the for attayning thy saluation. But if thou finde thy self in other estate (as alas many may at this daye in our poore afflicted countrie;) then I beseeche the tender marcie of our Soueraine Lord and Sauiour, that by readings of this present booke, thou maist the sooner be moued to make thy selfe partaker both of the one and of the other benefite; that is to saie; [Page] not onlie to enter into the vnion of his Catho­lique Church, but also (which more im­porteth) to leade a true Christian and ver­tuous life within the same. And so to our Lord IESVS I commit the. At S. Omer in Artoys this present xxix. of Iulie 1585. Being the daye of the holie virgin S. Martha.

Thy harty vvel vviller and seruant in IESVS Christ. R. P.

OF THE MANY-FOLDE PERILS THAT ENSVE TO THE vvorld by inconside­ration. And hovv necessarie it is for euerie man to enter into cogitation of his ovvne estate. CHAPT. I.

THE Prophetes and Sainctes of God, The chari­table pro­ceeding of God by Int. prophctes. who from tyme to tyme haue bene sent by his merciful pro­uidēce, to aduertise and warne synners of theyr perilous estate and conditiō for synne; haue not onlie fortold them of their wickednesse and imminent dangers for the same; but also haue reueiled the causes therof, wherby they might th' ea­syer prouide remedie for the inconueniē ­ces to come.

Such is the charitable proceeding of our moste mercifull Lord with the childrē of mē. And amōg other causes, none is more [Page 2] general or more often alleaged, then the lacke of consideration, by which as by a The dāger of inconsi­deration. common snare and decept of our aduersa­rie, most men fall into synne and are hol­den also perpetuallie in the same, to their final destruction and eternal perdition.

So Esay the prophet speaking of the carelesse nobilitie and gentrie of Iurie, that gaue them selues to bāketting & dis­porte, without consideration of their du­ties towardes god; repeateth often the threat of vvoe against them, and thé put­teth downe the cause i thes wordes: The Esa. 5. lute, and harpe, and tymprel, and shalme, and good vvyne, aboundeth in your bankettes, but the The sen­sual life of the Iuis he [...] vvorkes of god you respect not, nor haue you con­sideration of his doinges. And then insueth: Therfore hath hell enlarged his soule, and opened his mouth vvithout all measure or limitation, & the stoute, and high, and glorious of this people shall descende into it.

Here are two causes (as you see) and two effectes lynked together, of thes Iewes damnation, th' one depending of th' other. For as good cheere and sensua­litie brought thes men to inconsideratiō of gods workes and proceedinges to­wardes synners: so Incosideratiō brought them to the mouth and pittes brymme of hell. I say, that inconsideration of gods workes towardes sinners, brought them to this peril, for that it followeth in the verie same place; And the Lord of ho­stes shalbe exalted in indgemēt, and our holie god shalbe sanctified in iustice; as if he had sayed, [Page 3] that albeit you will not consider now gods iudgemétes and iustice, amiddest the heate and pleasure of your seastinges: yet shall he by excercising the same vpon you hereafter, be knowen, exalted, and sanc­tified throughout the world.

The like discourse maketh God hym self by the same prophet, to the daughter of Babylon, and by her, to euerie finful and Esa. 47. sensual soule figured by that name. ‘Come downe (sayeth he) & sitte in the dust thou daughter of Babylon: thou hast said, I shal be a Ladye for euer, and hast not put vpon The daugh­ter of Ba­bylon for­getteth her ende. thy harte the thinges thou shouldest, nor hast thou had remembrāce of thy last ende &c. Now therfore harcken thou delicate (daughter) which dwellest so cōfidētlie: ther shall come vpon the, an euel, wherof thou shalt not know the ofspringe, and a calamitie shall rushe vpō the, frō which thou shalt not be able to deliuer the. A mi­serie shall ouertake the vpon the suddain, which thou shalt not know. &c.’

Holie Ieremie, after he had weyghed with hym self what miseries for synne the prophetes Esay, Amos, Ozee, Ioel, Abdias, Michaeas, Nahum, Sophonias and hym self (all which prophetes lyued within the cōpasse of one hūdred yeares) had fortolde to be imminent vppon the world; not onlie to Samaria and the ten tribes of Israel, which were now alredie caried into banishmēt to the furthest par­tes of th' east: but also to the states & coū ­tries 4. Reg. 15. & 17. that most florished at that tyme, (as [Page 4] by name to Babylō, Egypt, Damasco, Ty­rus, Sidon, Moab, and finallie to Hierusa­lem and Iudaea it self, which he forsaw should soone after moste pittifullie be de­stroyed:) when he saw also by longe ex­perience, that nether his wordes, nor the The com­plaint of Ierenue for inconsi­deration. wordes and cries of th' other forenamed prophetes, could anie thing moue the hartes of wicked men: he brake foorth into this moste lamentable complaint; Desolatione desolata est omnis terra, quia nulius Iere. 12. est qui recogitet corde. The whole earth fal­leth into extreme ruine & desolation, for that there is no man which considereth depelie in his hart.’

This complaint made good Ieremie in his dayes for compassiō of his people, that ranne miserablie to perdition for want of consideratiō. And the same complaint with much more reason may euerie good Christiā make at this tyme, for th' infinite soules of such as perishe daylie by incōsi­deration. Wherby as by a general and re­medilesse inchantement, manie thousand soules are brought a slepe, and doe synde them selues within the gates of hell, be­fore they misdoubt any such inconueniē ­ce, being ledde through the vale of this present life as it were blyndfolded, with the veile of carelesse negligence, (lyke beastes to the slaghterhouse,) and neuer permitted to see theyr owne danger vntil it be to late to remedie the same.

Propterea captiuus ductus est populus meꝰ, quia Esa. 5. non habuit scientiam, saith god by the mouth [Page 5] of Esaye. Therfore, & for this cause, is my people led away captiue in all bondage & slauerie to perditiō, for that they haue no knowledge, no vnderstāding of their owne estate, no forsight of the tymes to come, no consideration of their danger. Herehence floweth all the miserie of my people, and yet this is a mysterie that all men wil not know.

Will you see what a mysterie and sealed secret this is? harcken then how one des­cribeth The myste­rie of incō ­sideration. Iob. 4. the same, and with what circum­stances. Furthermore (saith he) a certaine hydden word was spoken vnto me, and mine eare as it were by stealth receiued the veines of his whyspering: it was ī the horror of a vision by night, when deade sleepe is wonte to possesse mē. Feare came vpon me and trēbling, and all my bones were extremely terished. At lēgth a spirit past by, in my presence, wherat the heares of my flesh stoode vp in horrour. There stoode before me one whose face I knew not. His image was before mine eye. & I hard his voyce as the sound of a soft ayer.

Hytherto is described in what maner and order this secret was reueiled: but now what said this visiō or spirit (thinke you) at the last? trulie, he made a shorte di­scourse to proue by the fall of th' āgels for their synne, that much more, qui habitant do­mos luteas, & terrenum habeut fundamentum, cō ­sumentur Iob. 4. velut a tinea, & de mane vsquè ad ve­speram succidentur. They who dwell in A collectiō to be noted. houses of morter, (as all mortall men doe [Page 6] whose bodies are of flesh), & they, which haue their foundation of earth, (as most folke of this world haue that putt their confidence in thinges of this life;) they must all consume by litle and litle, as tho cloth doth by the mothe, & at lēgth they must vpon the sudden, (within lesse space perhappes thē is from morning to night) be cut downe and dispatched, when they thinke least of it.’

And to shew that herein standeth a point of high secresie, (I meane to consi­der & ponder well this discourse) he ma­keth his conclusiō in thes wordes imme­diatlie following; ‘& quia nullus intelligit, in aeternum peribunt.’

And for that few or none of those men before mētioned, who haue such earthlie foundatiōs, doe vnderstand Lack of cōsideratiō cause of eternal de­struction. this pointe aright, (I meane of their sud­daine death, & cutting of frō this world,) therfore must they perish eternallie, and this is a secrete which few men will be­lyeue. Vir insipiens non cognoscet, (saith Da­uid) & stultus nō intelliget haec: an vnaduised man wil not learne thes thinges, nor wil a foole vnderstand them:’ but what thin­ges? Psal. 91. A point that fooles vvill not consuler. it inseweth in the same place: how wonderful the workes of god and how deepe his cogitations are aboute sinners, who sprynge vp as grasse (and florish in this world) ‘vt intereant in seculum seculi,’ to th' ende they may perish for euer and euer.

The prophet Daniel had many visions and straunge reuelatiōs of great and high mysteries: but one amongest all other (& [Page 7] this the least,) of the most dreadful iudge­mentes of god vppon synners in th' ende of the world. The vision was by the great ryuer Tigris; wher, as diuers angels were Dan. 10. attending about the bankes; so vpon the water it self, stood one in the likenes of a A most terrible vi­sion of Da­niel vvherī he savv Christ. man, of exceeding dreadful maiestie; his apparrel being onlie lynninge, through which his bodie shyned like pretious stone; his eyes like burnig lampes, his face like flashinge lightening, his armes and legges like brase inflamed, and his voice as the shoote of a whole multitude of people that should speake together.

This was Christ by all interpretation: at whose terrible presence when Daniel fel downe dead, he was erected againe by an Angel and made strong to abyde the vision, and so hauing hearde and seene the most wonderful thinges that ī his booke he recompteth; he was bold to aske a que­stion or two, for better vnderstanding therof, and his first question was, hovv long it should bee, ere thes most vvōderful things tooke Dan. 12. their ende? VVherunto the man vpon the water answered, by stretching out both his brasen armes to heauen, and swearing straūgelie, by hym that liued for euer and euer; that it should be a tyme, and tymes, and halfe a tyme. Which answer, Daniel not vn­derstāding, began to question further, but he was cutt of with this dispatch: Goe thy A secret. vvay Daniel, for thes speeches are shutt vp and sealed vntil the tyme preordained. And yet for his futher instruction it was added in the [Page 8] same place; Impie agent impij, nec intelligent. Wicked men will alwayes doe wic­kedlie, Dan. 12. VVilfull ignorance. and will not vnderstand thes my­steries, albeit we should neuer so much expounde them.

Wherby as by all the rest that hytherto hath ben alleaged, is made apparent, that inconsideration, negligence, carelesse ig­norance, and lack of vnderstanding in our owne estates, and in gods iudgementes & proceedinges with iniquitie and synne, hath bene a bane, and a common perditiō of rechelesse men, from tyme to tyme.

And if we will turne our eyes to this our age much more shall we see the same The cause of so much sinne at this day. to be true. For what is the cause (think you) why at this day, we haue so manie of those people, whom holie Iob doth call abhominable, that drinke vp iniquitie as beastes due vvater, that, committ all synne, all in­iustice, Iob. 15. all turpitude, without remorse or scruple of consciēce? what is the cause of this (I say) but lack of consideration, lacke of vnderstāding, lack of know­ledge? for as Christ said to Hierusalem touching her destruction, si cognouisses & tu, &c. if thou also (ó sinful soule) diddest Luc. 19. know, what hangeth ouer thy heade for this carelesse life of thine: if thou (daugh­ter of Babylon) wouldest remember and ponder in thy hart what shalbe th' ende Es2. 47. of thes thy delightes: thou wouldest not lyue so pleasantlie as thou doest, Nunc au­tem abscondita sunt haec ab occuiis tuis. But now (sayeth Christ) thes thinges are hydden Luc. 9. [Page 9] from thy ne eyes.

Not, but that thou mayst haue knowen them if thou wouldest, but for that thou Voluntarie inconside­ration. arte one of them, who say to god, scientiam viarum tuarum nolum', we will not haue vn­derstanding of thy wayes; one of them, Iob. 21. qui sunt rebelles lumini, that are rebellious against the light and illuminatió of gods Iob. 23. grace; one of thé, qui nolūt intelligere vt bene egant; that will not vnderstand to doe wel. And finallie one of them, qui declinant aures, Pro. 28. ne audiat legem, that turne away their eares to th' ende they may not heare gods law: quorum oratio est execrabiiis, whose not onlie Ibid. life, but also prayer is execrable and de­testable in the sight of their maker.

Truelie, nothing in reason can be lesse tollerable in the presence of gods Maie­stie, then wheras he hath published a law vnto vs with so greate charge to beare it in mynde, to ponder in harte, to studdie & Dent. 6. & 11. Iosue 1. Psal. 118. Eccle. 6. & 22. meditate vpon it both day and night, at home and abrode, at our vpry singe and at our downe lyinge; to make it our cogita­tió, our discourse, our talke, our excercise our rumination, and our delight: that we should notwithstanding so contemne the same, as to make it no part of our thought, but rather to flee the knoledge therof, as we see most men of the world doe, for not troubling their consciences.

But the holie Ghost hath layed downe the reason hereof long agoe in these wordes: cum sit timida nequitia, dat testimoniū Ecclo 17. condemnationis. For that wickednesse in it [Page 10] self, is alwayes' fearfull, it gyueth wit­nesse The first cause vvhy men slie cōsideratiō. against it self of damnation, when so euer it thinketh of the law of god, or of honestie. So Felix the gouernour of Iurie when S. Paul began to talke of iustice, cha­stitie, and gods iudgmentes before hym; he was wonderfullie a feard, and said to Act. 24. Paul, that he should departe for that tyme: and that he vvould call for hym againe aftervvard, vvhen occasion should require. But he neuer dyd, and what was the cause? For that (as Iosephus testifieth) he was a wicked man Ioseph. li. 20 antiq. cap. 5. & Drusilla his fayre ladie that was with hym at S. Pauls speeche, was not his true wife, but taken by allurement and vio­lence from an other, and therfore it of­fended them both to heare preaching of chastitie.

This then is one principall cause, whie men of this world will not enter into consideration of their owne estate, and of gods cōmandementes, least they should reade and see their owne faultes, & beare witnesse against thē selues, of their owne condemnation. Wherunto the scripture annexeth an other cause, not far vnlike to this, which is, that worldlie men doe so dro vne them selues in the cares and co­gitations The second cause vvhy men slye cōsideratiō. of this life, as they leaue in their mindes no place to thinke vpon gods af­faires, which are the busynes of their owne soules. This expresseth Ieremie the prophet most effectuallie, when hauing made his complaint, that not withstānding Iere. 7. his preaching and crying in the temple­gate, [Page 11] for long tyme together, where all the people passed by hym and heard hym; yet no man (sayeth he) would enter into consideration, or say with hym self, vvhat haue I donne? wherof he addeth presentlie the cause and reason; omnes enim conuersi sunt Ierem. 8. ad cursum suum, quasi equus impetu vedens ad praelium. All men are sett vpon their owne courses and wayes, and doe runne in the same, with as great vehemēcie and fearse obstination, as a furious armed horse, whē he heareth the trompett in the beginning of a battaile.’By which cōparison the ho­lie ghost expresseth verie lyuelie, the ir­recouerable state of a setled worldlie man, that followeth greedilie his owne designmentes in the negotiation of earth.

Thes are two of the chyefe causes of inconsideration, I meane, wilful malice, and obstinate occupation in the vanities The third cause of in­cōsideratiō. of this life. And yet mētioneth the scrip­ture, a third sorte also of inconsiderate men, who nether of direct malice, nor yet of greate occupatiō in worldlie affai­res, doe neglect consideration, but rather of a certaine lightenesse and idle negli­gēce, for that they will not trouble their heades with any thing but disporte and recreation, of whom it is written: aestima­uerūt Sap. 15. lusum esse vitā nostra. They esteeme this life of ours to be but a plai-game. And in an other place of the same mē: ita securi Eccle. 8. viuunt quasi iustorum facta habeant. They lyue as securelie and considentlie without care or cogitation, as if they had the good [Page 12] workes of iust men to stand for them. But as the holie Ghost pronoūceth in the same place; hoc vanissimum, this is vanitie and fo­lie in the highest degree.’

For as in thinges of this life, he were but a foolish marchant, that for quietnes A compa­rison. sake would neuer looke into his accōpt­bookes whether he were behind hand or before: and as that ship-master were greatelie to be laughed at, that for auoi­ding of care, would sett downe and make good cheere, & let the shippe goe whe­ther she would: so much more in the busi­nes of our soule is it madnesse and follie, to flye consideratiō for eschuyng of trou­ble, seing in th ende this negligence must needes turne vppō vs much more trouble and irremediable calamitie.

For as Ieremie sayeth to all such men, in nouissimo dicrum intelligetis ca, in the ende Iere. 30. & 23. In the end ynel men shall vn­derstand vvhether they vvill or no. of your dayes, you shall not chuse but know, & see, and vnderstand thes thinges which now for delicacie you will not take the paines to thinke of. But when shall this be trow you? he telleth plainlie in the same place: vvhen the furie of our lord shall come foorth as a vvhirle vvinde, and shall rushe and rest vppon your heades as a tempest; then shall you know and vnderstand thes thinges.

It seemeth that the Babylonians were The exā ­ple of the Babyloniās. a people verie faultie in this pointe of cō ­sideration (as all wealthie people are,) not only by that which before hath bene touched of the daughter of Babylon, that [Page 13] would not consider her endinge dayes; Esa. 47. but also, for that not long before the most terrible destruction of that greate Citie, by the Medes and Persiās, God cried vnto her in thes wordes: ‘My deerlie beloued Esa. 21. Babylō, put aside the table and stand vp­pon thy watch: rise vp you princes from eating and drinking; take your targetes in your handes; goe, and set a watcheman vppon the walles, and what so euer he seeth, let hym tell you.’And then was there a watcheman sett vppon the wales, and a Lyō to denounce with open mouth, what soeuer danger he saw comming towardes them. And God taught the people to crie in this sorte to their sentinel or watch­man: Esa. 21. Custos quid de nocte? custos quid de nocte? Thow watcheman, what seest thou com­ing towardes vs by night? what espyest thou (ò sentinel) drawing on vs in the darkenesse?’

By all which circūstance, what els is VVe must stand vpon our vvatch insinuated, but that god would haue vs stād vppon our watch, for that his iudge­mentes are to come vppon the world by night, when men least thinke therof? Luc. 12. they are to come as a theese at mid-night, as also in an other place we are admo­nished: and therfore happie is the man that shal be founde watcheful.

But now the dore and sole entrance Cōsideratiō the onelie dore to our vvatch. into this watch, wherof the securitie of our eternal life depēdeth, can be nothing els but consideration. For that, where no cōsideratiō is, there can be no watch, nor [Page 14] fore-sight, nor knowledge of our estate; & consequentlie no hope of saluation, as Bern. lib. 1. de con­sid. holie S. Bernard holdeth; which thing caused that blessed man to wryte fyne whole bookes of consideration to Euge­nius.

Consideration is the thing which brin­geth vs to know both god and our selues. And touching god, it layeth before vs his Maiestie, his mercie, his iudgementes, his commandemēts, his promisses, his threat­ninges, his proceeding with other men before vs, wherby we may gather what we also in tyme must expect at this hādes.

And for our selues, consideration is the keye that openeth the dore to the closet The manie cōmodities of conside­ration. of our hart, where all our bookes of ac­compt doe lye: it is the looking glasse, or rather the verie eye of our soule, wherby she taketh the vew of her self, and looketh into all her whole estate: Into her riches, her debtes, her dueties, her negligēces: her good guiftes, her defectes, her saftie, her dāger; her way she walketh in, her course she followeth, her pace she holdeth, and finallie, the place and ende wherto she draweth. And without this consideratiō, she runneth on hedlong into a thousand brakes and bryars, stumbling at euerie steppe into some one inconuenience or other, and continuallie in perill of some great and deadlie mischiefe.

And wonderful (trulie) it is, that in all other busines of this life, men can see and confesse, that nothing may be ether be­gunne, [Page 15] prosecuted, or well ended without consideratiō, and yet in this greate affaire, of gayning heauen, or falling into hell, few thinke consideration greatelie ne­cessarie to be vsed.

I might stand here to shew th' infinite other effectes and commodities of con­sideration, as that it is the watche or Effectes [...] consideratiō. l'arme-bell, that stirreth vp and awaketh all the powers of our minde; the match or tynder, that cōceyueth and nourisheth the fyar of deuotiō; the belloes that enkynd­leth and inflameth the same; the spurre that pricketh forward to all vertuous, ze­lous, and heroical actes; and the thing in deede, that gyueth both light, and life, & motion to our soule.

Our Faith is confirmed & increased by consideration of gods workes and mira­cles; our Hope by cōsideratiō of his pro­misses, Hovv all vertues are stirred vp & quicke­ned by con­sideration. and or the true performance therof to all them that euer trusted in hym: our Charitie or loue of god, by consideration of his benefites and innumerable desertes towardes vs: our Humilitie, by cōsideratiō of his greatenesse, and of our owne infir­mitie: Our Courage & Fortitude, by cōtē ­plation of his assistance in all causes for his honour: our Contempte of the world, by consideration of the ioyes of heauen eternall: and so all other vertues both mo­ral and deuine, doe take their heate, and quickening, and vital spirite from consi­deration.

By th' excercise of consideratiō and me­ditation [Page 16] holy Dauid sayeth, that he felt a Psalm. 38. burning fyar to flame within his breast; that is, the fyar of zeale, the fyar of fer­uour in religion, the fyar of deuotion, the fyar of loue towardes god and his neigh­bour. And in an other place he sayeth, that by the same excercise, he svvept and purged his ovvne spirit, which is to be vnder­stoode, Psal. 76. from the dust of this world, from the dregges of synne, from the cōtamina­tion and coinquination of humaine crea­tures, for that consideration in deede is the verie fanne that seuereth and driueth away the chaffe from the corne.

For which cause we shall neuer reade of any holie man from the beginning of the worlde, nether before Christ or after, The exer­cise of holy men tou­ching consi­deration. who vsed not much and familiarlie this moste blessed excercise of cōsideration & pondering. And for the first three Patriar­ches, it shalbe sufficient to remember the custome of yonge Isaac recorded in Gene­sis. VVhich was, to goe foorth towardes Gen. 24. The first three Pa­triarches. night into the fieldes, ad meditādum, that is, to meditate, consider, and ponder vppon the workes and iudgementes, and commā ­demétes of god. And this he did being yet but a childe and vnmarryed (far different from the custome of yong gétlemé now a dayes who frequent the fieldes to follow their vanities): And as litle Isaac could not haue this custome but from his father Abraham, so (no doubt) but he taught the same to his sonne Iacob, and Iacob againe to his posteritie.

[Page 17] And as for Moyses and his successor Io­sue, it may easelie be imagined how they Moyses & Iosue. vsed this excercise, by the most earnest ex­hortations, which they made therof to others in their speech and writinges. The Deut. 6. & 11. good kinges of Iuda also, notwithstāding their many great temporal affaires, doe te­stifie of them selues cōcerning this excer­cise; Ios. 1. as Dauid almost euery where, that the commandementes of god were his day­lie meditation, not onlie by day and that, K. Dauid. tota die all the day, & per singuios dies, euerie day, & in matutino, in the morning, & septie Psalm. 38. 62. & 118. in die, seuē tymes a day: But also he insinua­teth his custome by night; meditatus sum no­cte cum corde meo, I doe meditate by night in Psal. 76. my harte vppon thy commaundementeso Lord; signifying hereby, both his watch­fulnes by night, when other men were a sleepe, and the hartie care that he had of this exercise which we esteeme so litle.

Salomon also king Dauides sonne, so K. Salomō. long as he liued in the grace and fauour of god, obserued this excercise of his father, and exhorteth other men, to haue continual Eccle. 6. and daylie cogitation in this affaire. VVhich if hymself had continued still, it is liklie he had neuer fallen from god by women as he did. The good king Ezechias is re­ported K EZe­chias. to haue meditated like a doue, that is, in silence & solitarines with hymself alone, which is the true way of profitable Esa. 58. meditation. Esaye testifieth of his owne watching by night in this excercise, and Esa 26. how he did the same with his spirite [Page 18] alone in the verie bowels of his harte.

Holy Iob maketh mention not onlie of The consi­deration that Iob vsed and the seuites therof. his maner of considering, but what also he cōsidered, & what effect he found in hym self by the same. First he considered (as I said) the wayes, foot-stepes, & cōmande­metes of god, & thé his dreadful power to witt; how no man was able to auerte or turne away his cogitation, but that his sowle did what soeuer it pleased, and by this (sayeth he,) considerans eum timore solli­citor. Iob. 23. I am made sollicitous or watcheful with feare. when I doe consider hym.’ In which wordes he insinuateth two most excellent effectes of cōsideratiō; first, the Tvvo effe­ctes of con­sideration. Esa. 32. feare of god, of which it is writen, salutis the saurus timor Drnini, the feare of God, is the treasure of saluation; and the second that by this feare he was made sollici­tous, watchfull, and diligent in gods ser­uice, of whiche the prophet Micheas saith thus. I vvil tell the (ò man) vvhat is good Mich. 6.and vvhat our Lord requireth at thie handes: to witt, to doe iudgement, and loue mercie and to vvalke sollicitous and vvatchfull vvith thie God.

But ò thou holie and blessed man Iob, A conside­ration vpon the doinges of Iob. Iob. 9. did this excercise of consideration, bring foorth in thee so greate feare and terror of god? and so carefull watchfulnes for obseruing his cōmandementes? now I see well the cause, why thou wrytest of thv self, that thou dydste doubte and feare all thy workes and actions, were they neuer so circumspect. But what shall we say [Page 19] now a dayes (most happie Sainte) who do not doubt so much as our owne dissolute, careles, and inordinate actions, who feele no terror of God at all, nor doe vse anie one iote of watchfulnes in obseruing his commandementes? trulie, this proceedeth of nothing els, but of inconsideration: it proceedeth of lacke of knowledge both of god and of our selues. For (doubte­lesse) yf we knewe eyther of thes two thinges a-right, (as in deede neyther of them can be well vnderstoode without th other,) it could not be, but that manie of vs would chaunge our wrong courses.

O merciful Lord, what synful māin the world would lyue as he doth, if he knew ether thee or hymself as he should doo? I meane, if he considered what thou arte, & what thou hast bene to other that lyued & cōtinued in synne as he doth? Not without greate cause, cried so often and earnestlie to the, that holy Doctor of thy church, for obteyninge of thes two poynctes at thie handes: vt cognoscam te, vt cognoscam me, that Augustin. in lib. cō ­fess. I may know thee, and that I may know my selfe, saith he: that is, that I may consider, and feele the true knowledge hereof, for many men doe knowe, but with lytle commoditie.

We know and beleeue in grosse the mys­teries of our faith, that there is a god Knovvledg and beleefe in grosse. who rewardeth good andeuel, that he is terrible in his councels vpon the sonnes of men; that there is a hell for synners, a heaué for good lyuers, a most dreadful day [Page 20] of iudgement to come, a straite accompt to be demanded, and the lyke. All this we know and belieue in general, as marchan­dise wrapped vp together in a bundle. But for that we vnfolde not thes thinges, nor rest vpon them in particuler; for that we lett them not downe into our hartes, nor do ruminate on them with leasure and attention; for that we chue them not well in mynde by deepe consideration, nor doe disgest them in hart, by the heat of medi­tation: they remaine with vs as a sworde in his scaberde, and do helpe vs as lytle vnto good lyfe (for which they were reueiled) as a preseruatiue in our pocket A similitu­de. neuer applyed, can helpe our health. We beare the general knowledge of thes my­steries locked vp in our breastes, as sealed bagges of treasure that we neuer told nor opened, and consequentelie, we haue nether feeling, sense, or motion therby; euen as a man may carye fyar about hym in a flynt stone without heate, and perfumes in a pommander without smell, except th' one be beaten aud th' other chafed.

All standeth then (good reader) in this one poinct, for direction of our selues in The impor­tance of cō ­sideration. this lyfe, and for reaping benefit by the mysteries of our faithe and religion; that we allot our selues tyme to meditate, ponder, and consider what thes thinges doe teache vs. For as the sycke man, that had most excellent remedies and precious potions set before hym, could expect no profit or ease therby, if he onlie dyd [Page 21] looke vpon them, or smeld them, or toke them into his mouthe alone, or should cast them foorthe of his stomache agayne, be­fore they were setled or had tyme to worke there operatiō: euen so is it in this case of ours. And therfore with greate reason said S. Paul to Timothie, after he had taught hym a lōge lesson. Haec meditare. 1. Tim. 4 Meditate, consider, and ponder vpon thes thinges which I haue shewed you: as if in other wordes he had said, all that hytherto I haue told you or written for your instruction, and all that euer you haue heard or learned besydes, will auayle you nothing for your saluation, except you meditate and ponder vpon the same, and do sucke out the iuyse therof, by often consideration.

Wherfore to conclude this chapter, my deare and wel beloued brother, for that The cōclu­sion of the chapter. consideration is so precious, and profita­ble, so needful and necessarie a thinge as hathe bene declared; I thought it cōueniēt in this first fronte and entrance of my booke, to place the mention and diligent recommendation therof, as of a thinge most requisite for all that insueth. For without consideration, nether this that I haue saide alredy, nor any thing els that shall or may be said hereafter, cā yeld thee profit, as by most lamentable experience we see daylie in the world, wher manie millions of men, passe ouer their whole The mise­rie of the vvorld. age without takinge profit of so manie good bookes, so manie preachinges so [Page 22] manie vertuous examples, so many terri­ble chastismentes of God vpon synners which euerie wher they see before their face. But yet, for that they will not, or haue not leasure, or dare not, or haue no grace, to enter into consideration therof: they passe ouer all, as sickmen doe pills, diuertinge as much as they may, both their eyes and cogitations, from all suche matters as are vngrateful vnto them.

But as good Ieremie sayth, the tyme will come, when they shalbe inforced to see Iere. 30. & 23. and know and cōsider thes thinges, when perhappes it will be to late to reape great confort or consolation therby. Wherfore (deare brother.) that which perforce thou must doe in tyme to come, and that perchance to thy greater damnation, (I meane to enter into consideratiō of thyne owne estate:) doe that now willinglie to thie conforte and merite, for preparinge the waye to thy saluation. Preuent the daye and redeeme the tyme, accordinge to S. Pauls wise councel: runne not head-long Ephes. 5. with the worlde to perdition: staye some tyme as holie Ieremie admonisheth the, and say to thy self, vvhat doe I? whether Ierem. 7. doe I goe? what course hold I? what shalbe myne ende? Take some tyme from thy pleasures, and from the companie of thy pleasant friendes to doe this, althoughe it be with some losse of pastyme and recrea­tion: for I assure the, it will recompence it self in th' ende, and make the merye when thy laughinge fryndes shall weepe.

[Page 23] Th' effect of all the considerations that Th' effect of all the chapters follovvinge. insewe, is, rightlie to know god, for by knowinge hym, we shall know our selues, and all thinges els whiche are necessarie for vs to know; and without knowinge hym all knowledge ī the world is vanitie and meere follve. haec est vita eterna (sayeth Christ to his father) vt te cognoscant solum Deum verum. Et quem misisti Iesan Christian. Ioh. 17. This is lyfe euer lastinge, that man know thee, which art onlie true god, and Iesus Christ whome thou hast sent.

Gods nature and essence we can not know in this lyfe; but the onely meane to know god in this world, is, to know his Maiestie, to know his mercie, to know The vvaye to knovve god in this life. his iustice, to know his iudgementes; to know his hatred to synne, his fauour to the goode, his benefites, and promisses, to all: his grace, his threates, his wayes, his cōmandemites, his dealinges towards other men before vs; all which things the cōsiderations followinge doe sett before our eyes, and consequentelie, they doe teach vs to know god a-right. Reade them therfore (deare brother) with attention and rememember the wordes that God vseth to vs all; vacate & videte quoniam Psal. 45. ego sum Deus. Take leasure, and consider that I am a God. It must not be donne in haste, nor (as the fashion is) for curiositie onlie, to reade three or fower leaues in one place, and so in an other: but it must be dóne wich such serious attentió, as ap­pertaineth to so great a busynes which [Page 24] (in trueth) is the weightiest that possi­blie vnder heauen, may be takē in hand. It is the busines wherof Christ meant espe­ciallie, when he said, vnumest necessarium, one onlie thing is necessarie. For that all Luc. 10. other thinges in this world are but trifles to this, and this alone of it self, of more importance, then they all.

THAT THERE IS A GOD, WHICH REWARDETH. GOOD AND EVYLL, against all Artheistes of olde, and of our tyme. VVith the proofes alleaged for the same, both by Ievve and Gentile. CHAPT. II.

IT is a thing both common and ordi­narie A common: custome in sciences, to, suppose principles. in sciēces & artes whō they are learned or deliue­red by other; to suppose diuers poī ­tes and principles, and to passe them oaer without proofe, as ether knowen before to the learner, or els so manifest, casie, and euident of them selues, as they neede no other proofe, but onely decla­ration.

So when we take in hand to instruct a An exam­ple in che­ualrie. man in chvualrie, or feates of armes; we doe sappose that he knoweth before (were he neuer so rude,) what a man, [Page 26] what a horse, what armour, what fighting meaneth: as also that warre is lawful and expedient in diuers cases; that princes of the world may wage the same; that sol­diars haue to liue in order and discipline vnder their regiment; 2nd that kinges for this cause doe hold their Generales, Lieu­tenantes, Coronels, Captaines, and other like officers in their bandes, garrisons, campes, and armies.

In manual artes and occupations like­wise, it is euidēt, that diuers thinges must In handy­craftes. be presupposed to be foreknowen by the learner, as in husbadrie or agriculture; in buylding, in paynting, and other such ex­cercises, when a man is to be taught or in­structed, it were not conuenient for the teacher, to stand vppon euerie pointe or matter that apperteineth to the same, but must leaue and passe ouer many things as apparent of them selues, or easilie to be discerned of euerie learner by na­ture, sense, reason, or common experiēce.

But yet in liberal sciencies and profes­sions of learning, is this more apparent, In liberal sciences. where not onely such commō and vulgar poītes are to be presumed, without proofe or discourse; but also certaine propositiōs are to be graunted in the beginning, as Growndes to be graū ­ted in sciē ­ces. In logicke. growndes wheruppon to buylde all the rest that insueth. So the Logitian (for example) wil haue you yelde ere he enter with you; that contradictorie propositions can not be together ether false or true, nether, that one thing may be affirmed and denied of an other [Page 27] in one and the self same respect and tyme.

The Moral philosopher will haue In Moral Philoso­phie. you graunte at the beginning, that ther is both: good and euyl in mens actions: and that the one is to be follovved and the other refused. The Natural Philosopher wil haue you con­fesse, In natural Philoso­phie. that all physicall bodies which de­pende of nature, haue motion in them­selues and are subiect to alterations, and vvhat soeuer is moued, is moued of an other. The Mathematique at his first enterance, will In the Ma­thematiks. demande your assent, that euerie vvhole is bygger then his parte; as also, the Metaphy­sique or supernatural Philosopher, that nothing can bee and not bee, at one tyme. And so In Meta­physike. other such lyke principles and common growndes, in thes and all other sciences are to be demanded, graunted, and agreed vppon at the beginning, for the better pursute and establishment of that which hath to follow, being thinges in them selues (as you see,) eyther by nature, comon sense, or experience most cleare and manifest.

And is not this also in diuinitie, (trow you,) & in the affaires that we haue now In Diui­nitie. in hand? yes trulie, if we beleeue S. Paul who writeth thus to the hebrues: Credere oportet accedētem ad Deum, quid est, & inquirē ­tibus Heb. 11. se remunerator sit. He that is in cōming towardes God, must beleeue that there is a God, & that he is a rewarder to such as seeke hym. Behold here two principles, wherin a man must be resolued before he Tvvo prin­ciples in di­uiritie. cā seeke or draw neere vnto god. The one, [Page 28] that ther is a god, and the other, that the same [...]. [...]. god is iust to revvard euerie man that seeketh hym according to his desertes.

VVhich two principles or general groūds are so euidēt in dede of their owne natures, and so ingrassed by gods owne hande, into the mynde and vnderstanding of euerie particuler man, at his natiuitie, (according to the saying of the prophet: the light of thy countenance is sealed vpon vs, ò Lord,) that were not the tymes we lyue Psal. 4. in, to-to wicked, and the shameles indu­ration of sinners intollerable: we should not neede to stande vpon the proofe of thes pointes, for confirmatiō of our cause that we now intreate, of resolution: but rather, supposing and assuring our selues, that no reasonable creature lyuing, could doubt of thes principles; should pursue onely the consideration of other thinges that might stirre vp our wills to perfour­mance of our duties towardes this God that hath created vs, and remaineth to paye our rewarde at th' ende.

But for so muche as iniquitie hath so aduaūced her selfe at this day, i the hartes The cause of this chapter. of many, as not onely to contemne and of­fend theyr maker, but also to denye hym, for patronage of their euyl life, and for exstinguishing the worme of their owne afflicted and most miserable consciences: I am inforced before all other thinges, to discouer this fonde and fowle errour of theirs, and to remoue also this refuge of desperate iniquitie, by she wing the inuin­cible [Page 29] veritie of thes two prīciples, th' one depending of the other, in suche sorte, as the first being proued, the second hath of If ther be a God, he is a iust re­vvarder. necessitie to follow. For if once it be ma­nifest, that there is a God, which hath care and prouidence of all thos, whome he hath created and gouerneth; thē must it insue by force of all consequence, that he is also to rewarde the same men accor­ding to their merites and desertes of this life.

First then to proue this principle, that there is a God, I neede vse no other argu­ment, or reason in the world, but onlie, to referre eche mā to his owne See La­ctantius at large in his booke of the vvork­māshipe of the vvorld. sense, in be­holding the world, wherof euerie parte and portion is a most cleere glasse, repre­senting God vnto vs, or rather a sayre ta­ble wherin God hath drawen & imprin­ted The vvorkes of the vvorld doe declare the vvork­man. hymself, in so manifest characters and legible letters; as the simplest man ly­uing may reade and vnderstand the same.

In respect hereof said the wise man so longe agoe. That vaine and foolishe were all thos who cōsidering the workes that are sene in this world, could not therby rise to vnderstād the worke-man. And heSap. 13.gyueth this reason, a magnitudine enim spe­ciei creaturae, cognoscibiliter poterit Creator ho­rum videri. For that by the greatenes of bewtie in the creature, may the Creator therof be sene and knowen.’ Which S. Paul cōfirmeth when he sayeth, that the inui­sible Rom. 1. thinges of God, may be sene and knowen by the visible creatures of this [Page 30] world. Which is to be vnderstoode in this sense, that as a prisonner in a dungeon may easilie by a little beame that shyneth in at a chyncke, conceaue ther is a sunne, from whence that beame descendeth: and as a trauailer in the wildernesse that falleth vpon some channel or brooke, may as­cende by the same to the well or fontaine: euen so, he that beholdeth and cōsidereth the wonderful workes of this world, may therby conceaue also the wonderful Artificer or workeman that made them.

If a man should passe by sea into some A Simili­tude. foraine, strāge, & sauuage countrie, wher nothing els but birdes and beastes did ap­peare; yet if he should espie some exqui­site building or other worke of arte and reason in the place; he would presentelie assure hymself, that some men dwelt or had bene in that countrie, for that suche thinges could not be donne by beastes or vnreasonable creatures: euē so in the vew and consideration of this world.

If we cast our eyes vpon the heauens; we remaine astonished, with the miracles The Hea­uens teache God. that we behold: but who made them? we see the skyes of exceedīg huge highenes; distinguished with colours and bewtie most admirable; adorned with starres and planetes innumerable, and thes so quali­fied with theyr diuers and different and vnequal motiōs, as albeit they neuer moue or goe together: yet doe they neuer gyue lett or hynderance th' one to th' other, nor chāge there course out of order or season.

[Page 31] Quis enarrabit caelorum rationem, & concen­tum caeli, quis dormire faciet? Who is able to Iob. 28. declare the reason of thes heauēs, or who can make cease or sleepe the vniforme course of theyr motion; saith God to Iob?’ As who would say, that because no man or mortal creature can doe this; therfore may we imagine of what power and per­fection their maker is. Which king Dauid had donne when he pronounced, caeli enar­rant Psal. 18. gloriam Dei, & opera manuum eius, annun­ciat firmamentum. The heauens declare the glorie of God, and the firmament doth preache the workes of his handes vnto vs.’

If we pull downe our eyes from heauen, The earth teacheth vs God. to earth; we behold the same of an infi­nite bignesse, distinguished with hills and dales, woodes & pastures; couered with all varietie of grasse, herbes, flowers and leaues; moistened with riuers, as a bodie with veines; inhabited by creatures of in­numerable kindes and qualities; inriched with inestimable and endeles treasures: and yet it self standing, or hanging rather with all this weighte and poise, in the middest of the ayer, as a litle balle with­out proppe or pillar. At which deuise and most wonderful miracle, God hym self, as it were, glorying, said vnto Iob. VVhere Iob. 38. vvere thou, vvhen I layed the foundations of th' earth? Tell me if thou haue vnderstanding, vvho measured it out, or drevv his lyne vpon the same? VVheruppon are fastened the pillars of his foundation, or vvho layed the first corner stone [Page 32] therof?

If we looke nether vp nor downe, but cast our countenance onlie a side: we espie The Sea shevveth God. the sea on eche hand of vs, that invironeth rounde about the lande. A vaste crcature, that conteineth more wonders theu mans tongne can expresse. A bottemlesse gulfe, that without running ouer, receaueth all riuers which perpetuallie doe flow. A re­steles fight & turmoile of waters, that ne­uer repose netherday nor night. A dread­ful, raging, and furious elemēt, that swel­leth, and roareth, & threateneth the lade, as though it would deuoure it all at once. And albeit in situation it be higher then the earth, as the philosopher sheweth, & Aris:. lib. de mira­bilibus. doe make assaultes daylie towardes the same, with most terrible cries and waues mounted euen to the skie: yet when it draweth neere to the lande, and to his ap­pointed borders; it stayeth vpon the sud­daine, though nothing be there to let it, & is inforced to recoile backe againe, mur muring as it were, for that it is not per­mitted to passe any further.

Of which restrainte, God asketh Iob this question. VVho hath shutt vp the sea vvith gates, vvhen he breaketh forth in rage as Iob. 38. from his mothers vvombe? Wherunto no man being able to gyue answer, God ansuereth hym self in thes wordes. I haue limited hym vvith my boundes, & I haue set hym both a dove and a barre, and haue said vnto hym, hytherto shalt thou come, and shalt not passe further; here shalt thou breake thie svvelling vvaues.

[Page 33] This in summe, is of thinges without vs. But if we should leaue thes, and enter The things in man de­clare God. to seeke God within our owne selues, whether we consider our bodies or our soules, or any one parte therof, we shall finde so manie straūge thinges, or rather so manie seas of miracles and wonders, that preach and teach their maker vnto vs; as we shall not onlie perceaue and see God most euidentlie, but rather (as a certaine Iamblicus de Myst. cap. 1. old heathen hath writen,) we shall feele and handle hym in his workes. Which kinde of speech also S. Paul hym self doub­teth not to vse, affirming, that ‘God hath geuen space to euery man in this life to seeke hym, siforte attractent cum aut inueniat, if perhappes they would handle hym, or Act. 17. finde hym oute.’ Which maner of wordes doe siguifie, that by consideration of gods creatures, and especiallie of the wonders in man hym self, we may come to see and perceaue the Creator so cleerlie; that in a sorte we may be said to feele and handle hym. So iointelie doe all thinges concurre to the manifestatiō of their maker: So ma­nifestelie and effectuallie doe they teach and demonstrate, and painte out God vn­to vs: nothing being so lyttle, that decla­reth not his greatnes, nothing so greate, which acknowdlegeth not his soueraitie, nothing so low, that leadeth vs not vp to behold his maiestie, nothing so highe, that descendeth not to teach vs this veritie.

It were a labour without ende, to goe about in this place to alleage what might [Page 34] he saide in the profe of this principle, that there is a God; seing there was neuer yet learned man in the world, ether Gentile or other, that acknowledged and confir­med not the same, being dryuen therunto by the manifest euidencie of the truth it selfe.

If you obiect against me Diagoras, Pro­tagoras, Theodorus Cyrenensis, Bion Borysthines, Old Athei­stes. Epicurus, and some few others that were open Atheistes & denied God: I answer, that some of thes were vtterly vnlearned, Laertius lib. 2. & 4. de vit. phi­los. and rather sensual beastes then reasonable men; and consequentlie might deny any thing, according to the saying of holie Dauid: the foole said in his hart, there is no God. Psal. 13. & 52. Others that had some smacke of learning, rather iested at the falshode of their owne Panisme idoles, then denied the being of one true God.

But the most parte of thes mē, in deede, and such others as in old tymes were ac­compted Atheistes, denyed not. God so much in words, as in life & factes; such as S. Paul called Atheistes in his dayes, that Rom. 1. Philip. 3. obeyed their bellies, and followed their pleasures in sinne & sensualitie, not vouch­safing to thinke of God in this life, (such was the Epicure, and manie other are at this daye of his profession:) but yet, (as Lactantius well noteth) when the same Lact. lib. 3. institut. men came to be sober, & speake of iudge­ment (as at their death or other tyme of distresse and miserie;) they were as redye to cōfesse God as any other what soeuer.

[Page 35] But for learned men, and people of dis­eretion, sobrietie and iudgement, there was neuer yet any (were he Iewe or were he Gentile,) that doubted in this veritie, but had meanes of probation to confirme the same, as more particulerlie in the rest of this chapter shalbe declared.

Hovv the heathens proued there vvas a God. Sect. 2.

AMONG the Gētiles or heathē people, those men were all wayes of most credite and estimation, that professed the Philoso­phers. loue of wisdome, & for that respect were termed philosophers. Who being deui­ded into diuers sortes & sectes, had fower principal sciēces, wherof they made pro­fession, eche one of thes hauing other lower sciences comprehended vnder it.

The first of thes foure, is called Natu­ral Fovver pri cipal scien­ces. philosophie; the second, Moral; the third; Supernatural, or Metaphysicke; the fowerth, Mathematique. And for the first three, they haue eche one their proper meanes and peculier proofes, wherby to cōuince, that there is a God. The fouerth, which is the Mathematique, for that it The Ma­thematique proueth not God. hath no cōsideratiō at all of the efficient or final cause of thinges, (vnder which two respectes and considerations onlie God may be knowen and declared to mē in: his world:) therfore this science hath no proper meane peculier to it self, for prouing this veritie, as th' other sciences haue, but receaueth the same as borrowed [Page 36] of the former.

THE NATVRAL phisosopher amóg THE Na­tural phi­losopher. the Gentiles, had infinite arguments to proue by the creatures that there was a God, but all he reduced to thre pricipal & general heades, which he termed exMotu, ex Fine, & ex Causa Efficiēte. That is, arguméts drawen from the Motions, from the Endes, and frō the Cause efficient of crea­tures that we behold; which termes th' ex­amples solowinge, shall make cleare & manisest.

Th' argument of Motion, standeth vppó this general ground in philosophie, that The first argument in natural Philoso­phie. Arist. lib. 7. & 8. phy. vvhat soeuer is moued, is moued, if an other. Wherin also is obserued, that in the mo­tions of creatures, there is a subordinatiō th' one to th' other. As for example; thes inferiour bodies vppon earthe, are moued & altered by the ayre and other elemēts; and the elements are moued by the in­fluence and motion of the Moone, Sunne, and other heauenlie bodies; thes planets agayne are moued from the highest Orbe or Spheare of all, that is called, the first mo­uable, Primum mobile. a boue which, we cā goe no further among creatures.

Now then asketh the philosopher here whoe moueth this first moueable? for if you saye that it moueth it self; it is against our former ground, that nothing is moued in natu­re, but of an other. And if you saye, that some other thing moueth it; then is the questiō againe, who moueth that other? & so from one to one, vntill you come to some thing [Page 37] that moueth, and is not moued of an other, and that must be God which is aboue all nature.

This was the common argument of Plat. l. 10. de legib. Arist. lib. 8. phys. cap. 5. Plato, and of Aristotle, and of all the best philosophers. And they thought it a de­monstration vnauoydable, and it seemeth they were admonished of this argument by consideration of the clocke, whose hammer when it stryketh, sheweth the next wheele wherby it is moued: and that wheele, sheweth an other wheele; An argu­ment taken from the clocke. and so from one to one, vntill ye come to hym that was the first cause of motion to all the wheeles, that is, to the clocke­maker hymselfe.

Aristotle, to king Alexander, vseth this pretie similitude. That as in a Quyar of Arist. lib. de mūdo. singers, when the foreman hath gyuē the first tune or note, there insueth present­lie a sweete harmonie and consent of all other voyces, both great and small, sharpe A simili­tude. and meane: So God in the creation of this worlde, hauing gyuen once the first pushe or motion to the highest heauen, called primum mobile, ther insue vppon the same, all other motions of heauens, planetes, elements, and other bodies, in most admi­rabile order, concorde, and congruetie, for cōseruation and gouernement of the whole. And thus is God proued by th' ar­gument of motion.

Th' other two arguments of th' Ende, and The second argumēt of natural philosophie. of the Cause Efficiēt of creatures, are made eui­dēt in a certaine maner by this that hath [Page 38] bene spoken of Motiō. For seing by expe­riēce, that euerie thing brought foorth in nature, hath a peculier Ende appointed, whereto it is directed by the selfe same nature, (as we see the byrde is directed to build her nest by nature, the fox to make his denne, and so the lyke in all other crea­tures:) the philosopher asketh here, what thīg is that, which directeth nature her self, seing eche thīg must haue somewhat to directe it to his Ende? And no answer can be made, but that the Director of Na­ture, must be some thing aboue Nature, & that is God hymself. This argument of Philo. l. de opificio mundi. the final Ende is most excellentlie handled, by Philo Iudaeus in his learned treatise of the vvorkemanshipe of the vvorlde.

From the Cause efficiēt, the Philosopher disputeth thus. It is euident by all reason, The third argumēt of natural Philoso­phīe. in respect of the corruptions, alterations, and perpetual motiōs of all creatures, that this world had a beginning; and Vide Plu­tarch de placitis Philosoph. all ex­cellēt philosophers that euer were, haue agreed theruppon, except Aristotle for a tyme, who held a fantasie, that the world had no beginning, but was from all eter­nitie, albeit at last in his old age, he con­fessed the contrarie, in his booke to king Arist. l. 8. phys. & l. de Gen. & corrup. Arist. l. de mundo & vide plo­tin. l. de mundo. Alexander.

This then being so, that this world had 3 begīnīg, it must needes follow also, that it had an Efficient cause. Now then is the question, whoe is that Efficient cause that made the world? if you say, that it made it self; it is absurde: for how could it haue [Page 39] power to make it self, before it self was, and before it had any beeing at all? if you say, that some thing within the world made the worlde: that is, that some one parte of the world, made the whole: this is more absurde, for it is, as if a man should say, that the fingar (and this before it was a fingar, or parte of the bodie,) did make the whole bodie.

Wherfore we must confesse by force of this argument, that a greater and more excellent thing, then is the whole world putt together, or then any parte therof, made the world, and was the Cause effi­cient of the frame that we see; and this cā be nothing els but God that is aboue the world. So that hereby we see, how many wayes the Natural philosopher is fraught with arguments, to proue there is a God, & that by reason onlie, without all light or assistance of faith.

BVT THE Metaphisique or Supernatu­ral THE Me­taphysique and his ar­gumentes. Philosopher amōg the Gétiles, as he to whome it appertained most in special, to handle thes high & supernatural affaires, had manie more arguments and demon­strations, to proue and cōuince the being of one God.

And first of all he said, that it could not The first argumēt in Metaphysi­que. stande with any possibilitie in his scien­ce, that eus finitum, a thing finite, or closed within bosides & limites, (as this world & euerie creature therin is,) could be, but from some Maker or Creator. For (sayeth he,) the thīg that in it self is not infinite, [Page 40] hath his boundes and limmites, and cōse­quētelie ther must be some thing, that as­signed thes boūdes and limites. And seing ī this world there is no creature so great, which hath not boundes and limites: we must of necessitic imagine some infinite supreme Creator or Maker, that limited thes creatures, euen as we see, that the potter at his pleasure, gyueth boūdes and limites to the pot that he frameth.

This argument the Metaphisique con­firmeth by a ruled principle in his scien­ce, Ut maxi­a in Me­taphysique. that euerie thing vvhich is by participation, must be reduced and referred to some other thing, that is not by participation, but of it self. And he calleth a thing by participation, which is Arist. li. 2. Metaph. cap. 2. not in the fullest or highest degree of per­fection in his kinde, but may haue additiō made vnto it. As for exaple; water, or anie thing els that is heated by the fiar, is hoate by participatiō, and not of it self, for that it maye alvvayes be hoater, and haue addi­tion of heate made vnto it: But fiar is hoate of it self, and not by participation, for that it hath heate in the highest degree, and in that kinde can receyue no additiō; wher­fore the heate of all other things, which are hoate by participation of fiar, are re­duced (concerning their heate) to the heate of fiar, as to their original.

Now then (sayeth the Metaphisique) we see by experiēce, that all the creatures and partes of this worlde, are things by par­ticipation onlie, for that they are finite in nature, and haue limitations in all their [Page 41] perfections, and may receaue additions to [...] the same, and consequentelie, they must of necessitie be referred to some higher cau­se that is infinite in perfection, and con­sisteth of it self alone, without participa­tion from others; and this is God, who being absolute, endeles, and without all limitation of perfection in hym selfe deri­ueth from his owne incomprehensible infinitenes, certaine limited natures and perfectiōs to euerie creature, which per­fections in creatures, are nothing els, but litle particles and participations of the bottōles sea of perfectiōs in the Creator, wherunto they are to be referred and reduced, as the beame to the sunne, and the brooke to the fountaine.

A second argument vseth the Metaphi­sique The 2. ar­gument in Metaphysi­que. Multitude. Plat. in Parmen. grounded vppon certaine rules of vnitie, wherof one principale is, that eue­rie multitude or distinction of things, proceedeth from some vnitie, as from his fountaine. This he sheweth by manie examples of things in this world. For we see by experiēce, that the diuers motions or mouinges of the lower sphers or bodies celestial, doe proceede of the mouing of one highest Primum Mobile. sphere, & are to be referred to the same, as to their foūtaine. Many riuers are redu­ced to one well or ofspring: innumera­ble beames to one sunne: all the boughes a of tree, to one stocke.

In the bodie of mā which for his beautie MICRO COSMOS. and varietie is called, the little vvorld, the veynes which are without number, haue [Page 42] all one beginning in the liuer; the arteres, ī the harte; the sinowes, in the braine. And that which is more, the infinite actions of life, sense, and reason in mā, as generatiōs, corruptions, nourishementes, digestions, The infi­ite thinges bat pro­sede from be soule. & alterations: Eeeling, smelling, tasting, seing, hearing, mouing, speaking, thin­king, remembring, discoursing, and ten hundred thousand particuler actions, ope­rations, and motions besides, which are excercised in mans bodie vnder thes or other such names and appellations: all thes, (I say,) being infinite in number, most admirable in order, and distincte in euerie their office and operation; doe re­ceaue not withstanding, their beginning from one most simple vnitie, and indiuisi­ble substance, called the soule, which pro­duceth, gouerneth, and directeth them all, to so innu nerable, differēt, and contrarie functions.

By this concludeth the Metaphisique, that as among the creatures, we finde this most excellente order and connexion of thinges, wherby one bringeth furth ma­nie, and euerie maltitude is referred to his vnitie: so much more in al reason, must the whole frame of creatures conteined in this world (wherein there are so manie milliōs of multitudes with their vnities,) be referred to one most simple & abstract vnitie, that gaue beginning to them all, and this is God.

A thirde argument vseth the Metaphi­sique, The 3. ar­gument in Metaphy­sike. Subordina­tion. deriued from the subordination of [Page 43] creatures ī this world; which subordina­tion is such, and so wonderfull; as we see no creature by nature serueth itself, but an other, and all together doe cōspire in ser­uing the common.

We see the heauens doe moue aboute continuallie without ceasing, and this not to serue them selues, but inferior crea­tures lesse excellent then them selues. We see that water moystneth the ground, the aver cooleth, openneth, and cherysheth the same, the Sunne heateth and quic ke­neth it, the Moone and Starres powre foorth their influēce, the windes refreshe it, and all this, not for them selues, but for other. The earth againe, that receaueth thes seruices, vseth not the same for her self, or for her owne commoditie, but to bring foorthe grasse wherewith to feede cattaile, and they feede not for them sel­ues, but to gyue nourishement vnto man.

Now then (sayeth the Metaphisique,) A simili­tude. if a man that stoode a farreof vppon a mountaine, should see in a field vnder hym, a great, huge & maine armie of souldiars, most excellent well appointed; ech one in order agreing with th' other; deuided into Rancks, Squadrōs, Companies, & offices; subordinate th' one to th' other by degrees; and yet all tending one waye, all their fa­ces bent vppon one place, all mouinge, marching, and turning together, all in­deuoringe with allacritie towardes the perfourmance of one common seruice, bymutual assistance, without dissention, [Page 44] discorde, difference, or clamour: he that should see this (sayeth the metaphisique,) as he could not but imagine some gene­ral high Capitaine to be among thes sol­diars, whom all obeyed, and from whose supreme commandement and order this most excellent subordination, agreement, and vnion proceeded: so much more, vpon consideration of the former coherence, consent, and miraculous subordination of creatures amōg them seiues in their ope­rations, must we inferre, that they haue some general cómaunder cuer thē all, by whose supreme dispcsition, eche creature hath his charge & peculier taske appoin­ted, which he must perfourme, for the cō ­man and vniuersal seruice of the whole.

The fouerth reason or argument al­leaged The 4. ar­gument in Metaphy­sique. Prouidēce. by the supernatural philosopher, is, of the marueilous prouidence, arte and wisdome, discouered in the making of e­uery least creature within the world. For seing there is nothing so litle, nothing so base or cōtemptible, within the compasse of this heauen that couereth vs, but if you consider it, you fynde, both arte, order, proportion, bewtie, and excellēcie in the same: this can not proceede of fortune as foolishe Lucretīus made di­uers bokes against the vvorke­manshipe of the vvorld. Lucretius and some other would haue it; for that fortune is casualtie without order, rule, or certaintie, and therfore needes it must come frō the wis­dome, and prouidence of some omnipotēt Creator.

If you take a flye, or a flea, or a leafe fró [Page 45] a tree, or any other the least creature that is extant in the worlde, and consider the same attentiuelie: you shall fynde more miracles, thē partes therin; you shal fynd suche proportion of members, such va­rietie of colours, such distinctiō of offices, such correspondence of instrumentes; and those so fit, so well framed, so coherent, so subordinate: as the more you contem­plate, the more shall ye maruaile, nether is ther anie one thing in the world, more effectual to draw a man to the loue and admiration of his Creator, then to excer­cise hym self often in this contemplation; for if his harte be not of stone, this will moue his affection.

We reade of Galen a profane and ve­rie Galen inforced to cōfesse gods prouidence. irreligious Phisitian, who as hymself confesseth in a certaine place, taking vpō hym to consider of the partes of mans bo­die; and fynding much wisdom in the or­der, vse, and dispositiō of the same, sought Galen. I. 5. de vsu part. first to gyue the praise and glorie therof to nature, or to some other cause, then to God. But I processe of tyme, being oppres­sed, as it were, with th' ey ceding greate wisdome, cunning, and prouidēce which he discouered in euerie least parcell and particle of mans bodie, wherin nothing was redundāt, nothing defectiue, nothing possible to be added, altered, or better de­uised: he brake foorth into thes wordes: Compono hic profecto cāticum in Creatoris nostri Lib. 3. de vsu part. laudem, quòd vltràres suas ornare voluit, melius quia vlla arte possent. Here trulie doe I make [Page 46] a song in the praise of our Creator, for that of his owne accorde, it hath pleased hym to adorne and bewtifie his thinges better, then by any arte possible it could be immagined’

Hereby then doth the Metaphisique gather and conclude most euidentlie, that there is a God, a Creator, a most wise and powerfull artificer that made all thinges: Such a one, as exceedeth all boundes of nature, and of humane habilitie. For if all the world should ioyne together, they could not make the least creature which we see in this world. He concludeth also, that the forsight and prouidence of this Creator is infinite, for thinges to come in all eternitie; & finallie, that his wisdome and cogitatiōs are inscrutable. And albeit some tyme, he reueile vnto vs some parte therof; yet often againe we erre therin. For which cause a wise heathē Platonick concludeth thus, ‘after long search aboute thes affaires. I will praise God (saith he) A vvon­derfull speech of a heathen. in those thinges I vnderstand, and I will admire hym in those which I vnderstande not. For I see, that my self oftentymes, doe thinges wher in my seruantes are blinde and cōceaue no reason: As also I haue sene litle children, cast into the syar Iewels of Plotin. li. de proui. greate price, and their fathers writinges of greate learning and wisdome, for that they were not of capacitie to vnderstāde the valure, and worthines of the thing.’

One argument more will I alleage of The 5. ar­gument in Metaphysi­que. Immortali­tie of the soule. Plat. l. 10. de repub. the Methaphisique, grounded vpon th' im­mortalitie [Page 47] of mans soule; which immor­talitie, is proued with one consent of all learned men (as Plato alleageth,) for that it is a spirite and immaterial substance, whose nature dependeth not of the state of our mortal bodie; for so by experience we see daylie, that in olde mē and withe­red sicklie bodies, the minde and soule is more quicke, cleere, pregnant, and liuelie, then it was in youth, when the bodie was most lustie.

The same also is proued by the vnquē ­cheable desyre which our mynde hath of learning, knowledge, wisdome, & other suche spiritual and immaterial thinges, wheri her thirst by nature is so greate, as, it can not be satisfyed in this lýfe, nether can the obiectes of sense and bodilie plea­sures, or any other commoditie or delight of this material world, content or satiate the restles desyre of this im naterial crea VVhen the desyre of our soule shalbe sa­tisfied. ture. Which is an euident argument to the Philosopher, that some other obiect and contentatiō is prepared for her in an other world, and that of such excellencie and supereminent perfectiō, as it shall haue in it all wisdome, all learnig, all knowledg, all bewtie, 'and all other causes of loue, ioye, and contentation, wherin our soule may rest for euer.

This being so (saith the Philosopher) that the soule and mynde of mā, is immor­tall: of necessitie it mast insue, that an immortall Creator sent the same into our bodies, and that to hym againe it must re­turne [Page 48] after her departure from this life here. This was the true meaning in deede (The mid. in lib. de anima. how soeuer some later interpreters haue misvnderstood the same,) of that aun­ciēt doctrine of old philosophers, which Plutarche alleagethe out of Pythagoras and Plato, afirming; ‘that all particuler Plut. de placit. Philoso. soules of men, came sent from one general and common soule of the whole world, as sparcles from the fyar, and beames from the common sunne:’ and that after their separatiō from their bodies, they shall re­turne againe, to that general soule, called The mea­ning of olde philoso­phers tou­ching Ani­ma mundi. Anima mundi, the soule of the world, (for that it gyueth lyfe & being to the world) and so to remaine with that general soule eternallie.

This was the doctrine of olde philoso­phers, which seemeth in deede, to haue bene nothing els (though deliueredi other wordes) but that which Salomō hym self affirmeth, in plainer spech, & spiritus redibit ad Deum, qui dedit illum: and our soule or spi­rit, shall returne to God that gaue it vnto Eccle. 12. vs. And this may suffice for a taste of that which the Metaphysique or Supernatural philosopher can say for proof, that there is a God.

THERE REMAINETH yet a third parte of humane wisdome or philoso­phie, called Moral, whose reasons and ar­guments THE Moral philoso­pher. for proofe of this veritie, I haue of purpose referred to the last place, for that they be more plaine and easie thē the former, and more sensible to the capacitie [Page 49] of euerie simple and vnlearned reader.

For first of all, he obserueth in the ve­rie naturall inclination of man (be his The first argumēt of Moral phi­losophie. manners otherwise neuer so euel,) that there is a certaine propension and disposi­tion to confesse some God or Deitie; as by example he proueth in all nations, were they neuer so fearce or barbarous; yet al­wayes cōfessed they some God by nature, though no man did teach or instruct them therin. The same is confirmed, by the com­mon vse of all heathens, in Tertulian handlech this pointe excellēthe in Apolog. lifting vp their eyes and handes to heauen, in anie suddaine distresse that commeth vpon thē. Which importeth, that nature her self hath ingrated this feeling, that there is a God. Yea, further he alleageth, that by ex­perience of all ages, it hath bene proued, that Atheistes them selues, that is, suche men, as in their health and prosperitie, for more libertie of sinful life, would striue against the being of anie God; when they came to die or fall into great miserie, they of all other men, would shew them selues most fearful of this God, as Seneca decla­reth, and as Suetonius sheweth in th' exā ­ple Seneca li. 1. de ira. Sueton. in Callig. of Calligula. Whiche is a token, that their conscience inforced them to beleeue a Godhead.

Nay, Zeno the Philosopher was wont to saye, that it seemed to hym a more sub­stantial The saying of Zeno touching the deathes of Atheistes. proofe of this veritie, to heare an Atheist at his dying daye, preache God frō a payre of galloes, or other such place of miserie, (when he asketh God and na­ture [Page 50] forgyuenes;) thē to heare all the phi­losophers in the world dispute the poite; for that at this instāte of death & miserie, it is lyke, that suche good fellowes, doe speake in earnest and sobrietie of spirite, who before in their wantonesse, impu­gned God ether of vanitie, ambition, sen­sualitie, or dissimulation.

Now then, when the Moral Philoso­pher hath proued by this natural inclina­tion of man, that there is a God, whiche hath imprynted in vs such a feelīg of hym self, as no conscience can deny hym, whē it cometh to speake sincerelie: thē steppeth he a degree further, and proueth, that this god which is acknouledged, cā be but one; The reason vvhy there can be but one God. for that, if he be God, he must be infinite; and if he be infinite; he can haue no com­pagnion: For that two infinite thinges can not stande together, without impeache­ment, th' one of th' others infinitie.

He proueth the same by the custome of most gentiles, who (as Lactātius well no­teth Lact. lib. 2. diuin. instit. cap. 2. in his tyme) whē they swore, or cur­sed, or prayed, or wished anie thing harti­lie, (especiallie in affliction, that lyghte­neth th' vnderstanding;) then fashion was to say, God, and not, the Godes. And for the Deus & non dij. learnederforte of them, how so euer they dissembled, and applyed them selues out­wardlie to the error of the common peo­ple: yet in earnest they neuer spake of more thē of one God, as Plato signifieth of hym self to Dionysius king of Sicilie, in a cer­taine letter wherin he gaue hym a signe [Page 51] when he spake in earnest and when in iest. Hinc disces tu, scribamego serio, nec ne. Cum serio, Plato ep.' 13. ad Dionys. ordior epistolam ab vno Deo, cū secus, a pluribus. By this signe shall ye know, whether I wryte in earnest or not. For when I write in earnest, I beginne my letter with one God: and whē I write not in earnest, I doe begine my letter ī the name of manie gods.’

Iuliā th' apostata in his three most scorn­ful Cyrillus lib. 2. cō ­tra Iuliā. bookes that he wrot against vs Chri­stians, (whome contemptuouslie he called Galilaeans,) endeuoring by all meanes to aduaunce and set foorth the honour of pa­ganisme, alleageth this Plato for a cheef pillar and father therof, and dareth pre­ferre Plotinus. Ennea. 1. L 8. 1. 2. & Eu. 6. l. 4. c. 12. 3. 4. Porphy. l. 2. de abst. & lib. de oc­ca. c. 21. Procl. in theolog. Platon. & l. de anima & Daem. 1. 31. 42. 53. Socrates. Apuleius, Agellius, & Laertius in vita So­cratis. hym before our Moyses: And yet you see what he testifiethe of hymself. And that this was his perpetual opinion, three of his worthiest schollers, I meane, three of the most learned that euer professed the Platonique secte, Plotinus, Porphyrius, & Proclus, al heathens themselues, doe te­stifie and proue in diuers partes of their workes, assuring, that both they and their master Plato, neuer beleeued in deed, but onlie one God. And as for Socrates that was Platos master, and pronounced by th' oracle of Apollo, to be the wisestman of all Grece; the world knoweth, that he was putt to death for iesting at the multi­tude of godes among the Gentiles.

Aristotle that ensued after Plato, be­gāne the secte of Peripatetickes, and was Aristotle & the Pe­ripateti­quos. a man so much gyuen to the search of Na­ture, as in manie thinges he forgate th' au­thour [Page 52] of nature, or at least wise, he treated lytle, and verie doubtefullie therof, yet in his old age, when he came to write the booke of the world to king Alexander, Iustin. in Apolog. (which book S. Iustine the martire estee­med greatelie, and called it th' epitome of all Aristotles true philosophie;) he resol­ueth the matter more clearlie, saying thus of God he is the father of godes and men, he is the Arist. l. de mundo. maker and conseruer of all thinges that be in the vvorld. And he addeth further in the selfe same place, that the multitude of manie Godes, was inuēted to expresse the power of this one God, by the multitude of his Theo. in metaph. Alex. Aphrod. l. de pro­uident. ministers: so that he maketh all Godes to be seruauntes besides onlie one. Which sen­tēce of their master, Theophrastus and Aphrodiseus, two prīcipal Peripatetiques, doe confirme at large.

Zeno the chief and father of all the Zeno and the stoikes. Plat. de oracul. de­fect. de trā ­quil. de quae [...]. Plat. Seneca de vita beat. de prouid. in epist. Stoikes was wonte to say, as Aristotle re­porteth, that, ether one God, or no God. Which opiniō is auerred euerie wher, by Plutarch & Seneca, two most excellent writers, & greate admirers of the Stoicke seueritie. And before them, by Epictetus, a man of singuler accompte in that secte, whose wordes were esteemed oracles. Dicenaum ante omnia, vnum esse Deum, omnia regere, omni­bu [...]Epist. apud Arrianum.prouidere. Before all thinges (saith he,) we must affirme that there is one God, and that this God gouerneth all, and hath pro­uidence ouer all.

As for th' Academikes, who made the The Aca­demikes. fowerth diuisiō or secte of Philosophers, [Page 53] it is sufficient, which I haue mentioned before, that Socrates their fownder was causedto dye for his opiniō in this matter; albeit it seeme, that such as insued in that sect, whose profession was to dispute and doubt of euerie thing, So in thi tyme of va rietie of Sectes. came at length by their much iangling and disputing, to be­leeue & hold nothīg. Wherof Cicero hym self may be an example, who in his bookes de Natura deorū, followeth so farre th' aca­demical veyne of doubtful disputing to & fro about the nature of Godes: as he maye Arnob. cōtra gētes. seeme (and so dyd he to diuers Christians of the primatiue church,) to be verie irre­solute whether there were any God or no. Albeit in th' ende he make shew to con­clude very plainlie & peremptorilie with the Stoikes.

All the fower sectes of Philosophers then, who in their tymes bare the credit All olde Philoso­phers ac­knovvled­ged one God. of learning and wisdome, made profession of one God, when they came to speake as they thought. But if we ascēde vp hygher to the dayes before these sectes beganne, that is, to Vide apud Plutarch de placitis Philos. Trismeg. ī Paemād. & in As­clep. Pythagoras & Archytas Tarē ­tinꝰ; & before them agayne, to Mercurius Trisinegistus that was the first parent of philosophie to th' Egyptians: we shall fynde them so resolute and plaine in this pointe, as no Christiā can be more. Wherof he that desyreth to see innumerable exam­ples, as well of thes mens sainges, as of other learned heathens of all ages: lett hym reade, but S. Cyrils first booke against Iulian th' apostata, or Lactant us first and [Page 54] seconde bookes agaynst the Gentiles, and he shall remaine satisfied.

This then is the Moral Philosophers The recol­lectiō of the first argu­ment in Moral Phi­losophie. first argument; th' inclination of all people to beleeue a Godhead; the instincte of na­ture to confesse it, the force of mans cōsci­ence to feare it, the custome of all natiōs to adore it. And finallie, the consent and ful agreemēt, of all learned and wise men, in applying this Godhead not to manie, but to one onlie, that made this world, & gouerneth the same. Non hominibus, non dae­monibus, Trismeg. in Paema. ca. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. &c. in Asclep. cap. 1. 2. 6. &. c. non diu ipsis, quos non Naturae ratione, sed honoris causa Deos nominamus. We doe not attribute th' appellation of true God, (sayeth Trismegistus) ether vnto men, or vnto diuells, or vnto the multitude of other godes themselues. For that we call the godes, not in respect of their natures, but for honours sake.’ That is, we call thē godes to honour thē for their famous acts, & not for that we thinke them in nature true godes. Which Cicero confirmeth in thes wordes: the life of man and common cu­stome, Ciceros opi­nion of the multitude. of Panime gods hovv they vvere made. hath novv receaued, to lifte vp to heauen by fame and good vvill such men, as for their be­nefites are accompted excellent. And herehence it. cometh, that Hercules, Castor, Pollux, Aescu­lapius, and Liber, are novv become godes, & hea­uen almost is filled vvith mankynde.

The second argument of Moral Philo­sophie, is, devltimo fine, & summo hominis The. 2. ar­gument of Moral phi­losophie. bono, that is, concerning the last ende of man, and of his highest or supreme feli­citie, wherby the being of God is also cō ­firmed. [Page 55] And albeit I haue said some what of mans ende before; yet that which in this place I am to adde, is more proper and peculier to Moral philosophie. For as other sciences may and doe consider the final endes of other creatures, which are diuers, & yet all concurre for the seruice of man: so this science of Moral philoso­phie doth properlie consider the final ende of man hym self, calling it, summum bonum, his greatest and highest happines, wherunto he was created, and wherunto he tendeth in this life, and wherin he re­steth and reposeth without further Mo­tion or appetit, whē he hath obteined it.

For better vnderstanding wherof, it is Euerie thing in this vvorld hath a na­tural desire to his ende. to be considered, that euerie thing in this world hath some particuler ende, toge­ther with an appetite and desire ingraffed by nature to that ende; which desire cea­seth, when the ende is obteined. As for example: a stone hath a natural appetite to goe downwarde to the Centre or mid­die of the earth, and so it resteth in no place, (except by violence it be stayed,) vntill it come thyther. On the countrary, fyar, reposeth no where (excepte it be restrained) vntill it moūte aboue the ayer to his peculier & natural place of abode, wher, of it selfe it resteth. And so in other thinges that are without sense, their is a certaine natural appetite & desire to their ende, which ende beig once obteined, that desire and appetite of it selfe reposeth.

In beastes likewise we behold, that [Page 56] they haue a desire to fill their bellies, and to satisfie their other senses, which being satisfied, they remaine contented, and de­sire nothing els, vntill the same appetite of sense wante his obiect againe. Wherby we perceaue, that sensualitie or conten­tation The feli­citie of beastes. of the senses, is the final ende desi­red of beastes, and their verie summum bo­num, or supreme felicitie.

But in man, albeit for maintenaunce of the bodie, there be this appetite also to satisfie his senses, according to the lower portion of his mynde, that is called sensa­tiue; yet according to th' other higher parte of his mynde, whose name is Rea­sō, or the reasonable parte, (which is the onlie parte in deede, that is peculier to man, and distinguisheth hym from vnrea­sonable beastes;) he hath an appetite of some more highe and excellent obiect, then is the contentation of thes senses; for that by experience we see and feele, that often times, when the senses be all satisfied, yet is the mynde not quiet, which argueth, that sensualitie, or sensual delec­tation, is not our summum bonum, wherin our mynde must rest and enioy here feli­citie.

Here vppon haue Philosophers & wise men fallen to dispute in all ages, what should be the final felicitie, and summum bonum of mankynde? And Cicero sayeth, Cic. li. de finib. bo­norum & malorū. that this pointe, is, cardo totius philosophie, the hooke or hyndge wherō all philoso­phie hangeth; for that this being once [Page 57] founde out, cleare it is, that all other thinges and actions are to be referred to th obteining of this ende & happines. And therfore aboute this pointe, there hath bene maruelous contentiō and fight The cōten­tion of Phi­losophers, about the felicitie of man. among Philosophers; the Stoikes refuting the Epicures, and the Peripateticues resu­ting againe the Stoikes, and the Plato­niques, (who went nearest the truthe) impugning and refuting both th' one & th' other; and this dissentiō went so sarre foorth, th' one parte assigning one thing, and th' other an other, to be this felicitie, or summum bonum; that Marcus Varro a most learned Roman. gathered two hun­dred fowerskore and eight diferent opi­nions Aug. l. 19. de ciuit. cap. 1. (as S. Augustine noteth) about this matter.

And finallie when all was said and examined, Plato founde, that nothing which might be named or immagined in this life, could be the felicitie or summum bonum, of man, for that it could not satisfie the desire of our mynde. And therfore he pronounced this general sentence. It is The sentē ­ce of Plato, in Phadon. impossible that men should synde their felicitie, or (summum bonum) in this life, seeke vvhat vvay they vvill, but in the next life vvithout all doubt it must be founde. The reason of which sen­tence and determination was, for that Plato was able to refute any thing, that th' other Philosophers did or could name to be our felicitie & final ende in this life, were it Riches, Honours, Pleasures, mo­ral vertues, or the like, which eche secte [Page 58] did assigne.

As for example; he proued that riches Hovv no­thing in this lyfe can be our felicitie. could not be our sammum bonum or hap­pines, for that they are vncertaine, vndu­rable, vaine, variable, and thinges that bring with them more danger oftē tymes and trouble of mynde, thē doth pouertie. Honours he refelled, for that besides their vanitie, they depende of the mouth and myndes of other men, who are changea­ble and inconstante. Pleasures of the body and voluptuousnes, for that they are com­mon to vs with beastes, & alwayes haue annexed their sting, and discontentation, when they are paste. Moral vertues, for that they consist in a certaine perpetual fight and warre with our owne passions, which neuer gyue vs rest or repose in this life. Finally, whether so euer we turne our selues, or what soeuer we laye our handes vpon, in this life, to make it our felicitie, or summum bonum; it faileth vs (sayeth Plato,) nether gyueth it any du­rable contentation to our mynde; wher­fore, this felicitie is to be sought and ob­teined in the life to come.

Thus farre arriueth Moral philosophie Hovvfarre Moral phi­losophie reacheth in determi­ning mans felicitie. by reason, to proue, that mans felicitie or final ende, can not be in any thing of this life or world. It proueth also by the same reason, (as in parte it hath bene touched before,) that this felicitie of our mynde in the life to come, must be a spiritual and immaterial obiecte, for that our mynde and soule is a spirite: it must be immortal, [Page 59] for that our soule is immortal. But what? goeth yet humane philosophie any fur­ther? or can Plato assigne the particuler pointe wherin it standeth? Heare his wordes, and confesse, that not without reason he was called, Diuine. In this it cō ­sisteth (saith he,) vt coniungamur Deo qui Plato in Phaed. omnis beatutidinis, fastigiū, meta, finis. That we be ioined to God, who is the toppe, the butte, and the ende of all blessednes.’ And can any Christian (thinke you) say more then this? yet harcken what a scholler of Platos sayeth, for explication of his ma­sters sentence. Supremus hominis finis, supre­mum Plotinus Enu. 1. llb. 4. cap. 1. bonum, idest Dens. The final ende of mā wherto he tendeth, is a supreme or soue­raine good thing, & this is God hym self. By which wordes we see that thes hea­thens, by the ende of man, could finde out God, which was the second argumēt pro­pounded in Moral philosophie.

A thirde argument vseth the Moral The 3. ar­gument in Moral phi­losophie touching revvard and pu­nishment. Philosopher, for proofe of God, (whiche shalbe the last I will alleage in this place) deduced from consideration of good and euel, vice and vertue; and especially of the rewarde which by nature, reason, & equi­tie is due to th' one; as also of the pu­nishement belonginge to th' other. For (sayeth he) as in all other thinges, creatu­res, and actions of this world, that passe from the Creator, we see proportion, or­der, iustice, wisdome, and prouidence ob­serued; so, much more must we assure our selues, that the same is obserued in the [Page 60] same Creators actions and proceedinges towardes man, that is the cheefe & prin­ciral of all his other creatures.

Now then we see and be hold, that all other creatures, are directed to their endes by nature, and doe receyue cōforte and contentation as longe as they hold that course: And losse, disease, & gricfe, as soone as they breake or swarue from the same. Onlie man hath reason gyuen hym whereby to know and iudge of his Ende; as also free will and election wherby he maye ether directe his way to the same by vertue, or turne a straye by following of wickednes. When upon it insueth, that in all equitie and instice, there must remaine rewaide for such as doe well, and follow the right pathe assigred the to their ende and felicitie, which is by good lyse: and punist on ente forth' other that abandone the same for pleasure and sensualitic.

But we see in this worlde, (saith the Thilosopher,) that moste wicked men doe receyue leaste punishement; and manie there bee (as princes and highe poten­tates,) whose liues and actions, be they neuer so vitious, yet are they aboue the correction of moitall men: and manie poore men in the contiarie parte, who for their vertue, patience, & honestie, receyue nothige in this lyfe, but enuie, malice, cō ­tempte, reptoche, despite, and oppression.

See of this matter, Socrates, in apologia. Plato. in Cratyl. & in Gorgia. & in phaed. & in I. 10. de legib. Plut. de Se­ra numinis vindicta. & others. Wherefore, (sayeth he) ether wanteth there prouidence & equitie in the gouer­ment & dispositió of thes great affaires, [Page 61] which we see not to want in thinges of lesser moment: or els must there be a place of punishement & rewarde in the lyfe to come, vpō the soules of such as passe from hence, & a iuste and powerful iudge to make recompence of thes inoqualites and iniustices permitted in this world. Which iudge, can be none but the Creator hym self.

And so hytherto haue I declared, how euerie particuler science among the Gen­tiles had particuler meanes and wayes to demonstrate God, by cōtemplation of his creatures, and by force of reason, which no man could denie. Now remaineth it to shewe, how the Iewe or faithful Israelite, before Christs appearance, was able to confirme this veritie to a heathen, which, shalbe the subiect of the sectiō insueinge.

Hovv the Ievves vvere able to proue God. Sect. 3.

THe people of Israel that for manie The people of Israel Gods par­tage. yeares and ages, were the peculier people and partage of God; as they dwelt enuironed with Gentiles of ech side that impugned their religion and worshippe of one God, an I had manie weakelinges. amōg them selues that were oftē tempted to doubt of the same religiō, by th' exáple of so manie nations and countries aboute them, that made profession of a contrarie religion: so had the diuines and learned mē of this people, diuers forcible proofes and most reasonable argumentes peculier [Page 62] to themselues, (besides the gifte of faith or anie other demonstratiō that hy therto hath bene alleaged,) to cōfirme their bre­thren in the belief of one God, and to cō ­uīce all atheistes or infidels in the world.

And albeit thes proofes which they vsed were manie, as the Creation of the world Diuers thinges vvherby the Ievves shevve God. by one God; the deriuing of th' hebrue re­ligiō frō the beginning; the cōuersation of God withe Abraham, of whome the Iewes descended; the miraculous deli­uering of that nation from Egipt; the law receaued from gods owne mouth by Moyses; the straunge enterance of Iewes into the lāde of promisse; th' extinguishig of the Gentiles which before inhabited there; th' erectiō of the Iuishe Monarchie, and protection therof against all other natiōs; the miraculous deedes & sayinges of Prophetes, and a thousand thinges and reasons besides, which confirme most eui­dētelie, that the Iewes God was the onlie true God: yet for that all thes thinges & sayinges with an infidel, had no more credite then the writinges or scriptures wherin they were recorded; hereby it ca­me to passe, that all which a Iew could say for profe of God, more then a Gētile, depended onlie vpon th' authoritie of his scriptures; And for this cause, he referred all his proofes and argumentes to make euident the truthe and certaintie of thes scriptures, which thing once performed, the being of one God can not be called in controuersie; for that thes scriptures are [Page 63] nothing els but a narration of th' actes & gestes of that onlie one God, which the Iewes professe.

We are now to see then, what the Iewe was able to saye for proofe of his scriptures, and consequentelie, for demō ­stration of God, and of his iudgementes Cōsortablà to heare the cer­taintie of scriptures declared. declared theri. Which discourse, as it was profitable in old tyme, for staye and cōfir­mation of all such, as were or might be tempted with infidelitie: So can it not be but verie comfortable to vs Christians of thes dayes, to behold the certaitie of thes scriptures layed before vs, vpon which the foundation of our whole faith de­pendeth.

FIRST THERFORE, the Iewe for THE. 1. proofe of scripturs, Antiquity. proofe of his scriptures, alleagethe the greate and wonderful antiquitie therof. For as God (saith he) was before idoles, & truth before falshod; so was the scripture, which is the storie of the true God, longe before the wrytinges of Panymes or infi­dels. Iosephus I. 10. cont. Appionē, hādleth this at large. Nay, further he sheweth, that the most parte of thinges recompted in the Bible, were donne before most of the Pa­nime Godes were exstante, and that the verie last writers of the Hebrue Canon, which are Esdras, Aggaeus, Zacharias & Malachie (Eusebiua assigneth them. 570. in Chron. almost six hundred yeares be­fore the cōming: of Christ, when the secōd Monarchie of Persiās begā,) were before the most of heathen aunciēt historiogra­phers, to wit, before Hellanic', Herodot', Pherecides, Thucy dides, and Xenophon.

[Page 64] And albeit the Gétils had some Poetes before, as Orpheus, Homer, & Hesiod; & Lycurgus the Lawmaker that liued a good while after: yet th' eldest of thes, arriued no higher then the dayes of king Salomó, whiche was fyue hundred yeares after Moyses, the first wryter of the Bible. After whose tyme, the most parte of heathen godes were longe vnborne, as Ceres, Vulcan, Mercurie, Apollo, A Elculapiu, Castor, Pollux, and Hercules, as the Gen­tiles themselues in their Genealogies doe Euphe­merus Messen. in Genealo. Deorum. confesse. And as for Abraham that liued fyue hundred yeares before Moyses, he was not onlie elder thē thes lesser Gods, which I haue named; but also the Iupiter, Neptune, Plato, and such other, who for dignities sake and antiquitie, are called by the Gētiles, Dij maiorum gentium, the Godes of greater Nations. And yet before Abra­ham, Cic. de natura Deorum. doe the scriptures conteine the sto­rie of two thowsand years or there about.

So that by this it is euident, that the wrytinges of heathés & the multitude of their godes, are but late fables īrespect of th' old & venerable antiquitie of Hebrue scriptures, & consequételie, th' authoritie of thes scriptures, must in reason be grea­ter then of all other writinges in the world besides, seing they were exstant before all others, in those first tymes of simplicitie and sinceritie, & were in parte translated into diuers liguages before the Monarchie of the Persians, that is, before Euse. li. 9. de praep. any storie of the Gentiles were writen, as [Page 65] Eusebius out of manie heathen authours Euāg. 23. declareth.

NEXT TO the reason of antiquitie, is alleaged the manner of wryting, autho­rising, [...] & cóseruing thes scriptures, which is such, as greatelie cōfirmeth the certain­tie of thinges conteyned therin. For first, what soeuer is sett downe in these wry­tinges, was ether taken immediatelie frō the mouth of God, as were the propheties and bookes of the law; or els collected from tyme to tyme by general consent, ac­cording as matters & miracles sell out, as were the booke of iudges, the bookes of Kinges, and Chronicles, and some other that conteine recordes and histories of tymes. Which bookes were not gathered by some one priuate man, vpon hearsaye or by his owne imagination, longe after thinges donne, as heathen histories and other prophane recordes & monumtes are; but, they were writen by general agreement, in the self same dayes, when thinges were in sight and knowledge of all men, and so could not be seigned.

Secondlie, when bookes were writen, Hovv Scriptures [...] [...] they were not admitted into the canon or authoritie of scriptures, that is, of gods worde or diuine writinges, but vpon great deliberation, and most euidēt proof of their vndoubted veritie. For, ether the whole cōgregatió or Synagoge, who had th' approuing here of, (and among whom commonlie were diuers prophetes,) did know most certainlie the thinges and mi­racles [Page 66] to be true (as did also the whole people) that were recorded in thes wri­tinges, conteining histories: or els they saw the same confirmed frō God, by signes and wonders, as in the bookes of their prophetes, & of their-law gyuer Moises, it fell out.

Thirdlie, when anie thing was writen and admitted for scripture, the care of cō ­seruation therof was such, and the reue­rence The care of cōseruatiō. of Iewes therunto so great; as may easilie assure vs, that no corruption or al­teration could happen vnto it. For first the thig was copied out into twelue Au­tentical Copies for all the twelue tribes; and then againe in euerie tribe ther were so manie Copies made, as were particuler synagoges within that tribe. All was donne by special Notaries, Scribes, ouer­seers and witnesses. The Copies after dili­gent renewe taken, were layde vp by the whole Cōgregatiō in the treasure-howse of the temple vnder diuers lockes and keyes, not to be touched, but by men ap­pointed, nor to be vsed but with singuler reuerence. To adde, diminish, corrupt or alter, was present death by the lawes of the Nation. And how then was it possi­ble (sayeth the Iewe,) that among thes writinges, ether falshode should creepe in, or truth once receaued, could after­wardes be corrupted?

It is not possible (sayeth he) in reason: and therfore obserueth he an other thing in this case, which ī truth is of verie great [Page 67] consideration; to witt, that no other Na­tion vnder heauē did euer so much esteeme Th' estima­tion that Ievves had of their scriptures. their owne writīges, that they would of­fer to die for the same, as the Iewes were redieto doe for euerie sentēce and syllable of their scriptures. Wherof also it did proceede, that in all their miseries and af­flictions, (wherin they were a spectacle to all the world;) in all their flightes and banishementes, to Egipt, Babylon, Persia, Media, and other corners of the earth; in all their spoiles, assaults, and deuastations at home; they yet euer had special care to conserue these writinges, more then their owne lyues, and so haue kepte the same without may me or corruptiō, more ages together, then all Nations in the world haue donne any other monumentes.

THE THIRD persuasion which is vsed by the Iewe for the veritie of his THE 3. proofe of scripturs. The since­ritie of the vvriters. scriptures, is, the consideration of the par­ticuler men that wrote them; who were such, as in reason can not be suspected of decept or falshod. For as I haue said, the Stories of the Byble, were writen from tyme to tyme by publique authoritie, and by the testimony of all men that saw and knew the thinges that are rehersed. The bookes of propheties, were endited by the prophetes them selues, who were plaine, simple, and sincere mē, authorized from God by continual miracles, and yet so scrupulous and timerous of their owne speeches, as they durst say nothing, but only, our Lord saith this; the God of Hostes com­maundeth [Page 68] that. &c.

And when they had preached and reade their writinges in the hearinge of all the people; they protested, that it was not mans worde, but gods, and that for such they left it in the publique treasurie of their Nation, vntill by tracte of tyme, th' euent and fulfilling of their propheties should proue thē true (as alwayes it did,) The lyues & deathes of the prophetes. and their owne both liues and deathes de­clare, that they meant no falshode; their liues being such, as were not subiect to the corruption, pride, vanitie, or ambitiō of this life, (as other prophane and hea­then writers were,) and their deathes for the most parte, offered vp in holie martir­dome, for defence of that truthe whiche they had preached & writen: as appeareth See Epi­phan de vi­tis prophe­tarum. in Esay, that was sawed in peeces by kīg Manasles: in Ieremie, that was stoned to death by the common people: in Ezechiel, that was slayne by the capitaine of the Iewes at Babylō: in Amos, whose braines were beaten oute by Amasias the wicked & idolitrous priaest in Bethel: in Micheas, whose necke was broken by prince Ioam sonne to kinge Achab: in Zacharie, that was slaine at th' Aulter, and the lyke.

And this for the Prophetes of later ty­mes A peculier cōsideration of Moises, first vvri­ter in the Bible. amōg the Iewes. But now if we cōsi­der the first Prophete of all that wrote among that people, I meane Moyses, that was not only a Prophet, but also an Histo­riographer, a Law giuer, a Captaine, and a Prieste: the first that euer reduced that [Page 69] people to a common wealth, and the first that putt their actes & gestes in writing, or rather th' actes and gestes of almightie God towardes them: this man (I say) if we cōsider hym onlie, (I meane the circūstan­ces of his person:) the Iewe thiketh this a sufficiēt motiue, to make anie mā of reason beleeue what so euer he hath lefte writen in the Bible, without further confirmatiō.

And first for his antiquitie, I haue spokē before, and the heathēs doe confesse it: & Euseb. l. 9 & 10. de praep. Euang. Ioseph. l. 1. cont. Appio. & L. 2. anti. for miracles donne by hym, the greatest ennemies that euer he had in the world, that is, Appiō in his fowerth booke agaīst Iewes, and Porphirie in his fowerthe booke agaīst Christiās, dee acknowledge them; and Porphirie adioyneth more for proofe therof, that he fownde the same cōfirmed by the storie of one Saconiathō a Gentile, who liued (as he saith) at the same tyme with Moyses. But what? all those miracles (say they) were donne by artemagicke & not by the power of God, as Moyses boasted.

But thē asketh thē the Iew, wher Moises a shepheard, could learne so much magick? or why could not the Magitians of Pha­rao, whose studie was in that profession from their infancie, ether doe the lyke, or Exod. 3. 4. 8. at least wise delyuer them selues from the plagues of Egipt? whie did they crie oute, The mi­raculous. vvorkes of Moyses. Exod. 14. the fingar of God is here? where did you euer heare such workes donne by magicke as Moyses did, when he deuided the redde sea? when he called into his cāpe so many [Page 70] Quayles vpon the suddayne, as sufficed to Exod. 16. feede six hundred thousand men, besides women and children? When he made a Num. 11. rocke to yeld foorth a fountaine? whē he caused a dewe to fall frō heauē that nour­rished Iosue 5. Psal. 77. his whole campe for fortie yeares together? when he caused the grounde to open and swalloe downe alyue, three of Num. 16. the richest noble men of all his armie, together with their tabernacles, and all other bagges and baggage? When he cau­sed Ioseph. li. 4. antiq. cap. 2. & 3 a siar to come from heauen, and cōsume siftie gentlemen of the former Rebelles adherētes, without hurting any one that stoode about them?

Thes thinges did Moyses and manie other, in the sight of all his armie, that is, in the sight of so manie hundred thousand people, amōg which, there were diuers his emulators and sworne enimies, as by the storie & icripture it self appeareth. Core, Num. 16. Deut. 11. Psal. 225. Dathan, and Abiron with their faction, soughte in all thinges to disgrace hym, & to deminishe his credite; and therfore if any one pointe of thes miracles had bene reprouable; Moyses would neuer haue durst to putt the same in writinge, nor would the people haue stode with hym, & much lesse haue receaued his writinges for diuine, and for gods owne wordes, (beinge sollicited agaynst hym by so potent meanes;) had not they knowen all thinges to be most true therin conteined, and had seene his straunge miracles, and familiaritie with God.

[Page 71] But he dealt plainelie and simplie in this behalfe; he wrote the thinges of The plaine and sincere proceeding of Moyses. his owne doinges, which euerie man pre­sent, did know to be true; and of Gods speeches and communicatiōs to hym self, he wrote so much as he was commaun­ded, wherof both God, and his consciēce did beare hym witnesse. He caused the whole to be reade vnto the people, and layed vp in their Sacred Arcke and Taber­nacle, as gods owne writing, and coue­naunt with that nation. He caused all the whole armie to sweare and vowe th' ob­seruāce therof. And thē drawing towards Nu. 20. & 27. Deut. 31. his death, he made a most excellēt exhor­tation vnto them, persuading them sin­cerlie to the seruice of their God; and cō ­fessing his owne infirmities, and how for his oftences he was to die, before their enterance to the lande of promisse. He cō ­cealed Exod. 32. Gen. 49. Nu. 12. Deut. 14. notth' offēces of his brother Aarō, of his Grand-father Leui, of his sister Ma­rie, and other of his kinred, (as worldlie princes for their honours are wonte to doe;) nether did he goe aboute to bring in gouernment after his disceasse, any one of his owne sonnes, (which is greatelie to be obserued;) notwithstandinge he lefte Num. 27. Deut. 3. behynde hym goodlie gentlemen fitt for that roome, & hym self of power to place them, if he had endeuored: But he lefte the gouernment to a straūger, named Iosue, as God had commaunded hym.

All which thinges (sayeth the Iewe) doe proue suffiçientelie that Moises was [Page 72] no man of ambition or of worldlie spirit, but a true Scruaunt of God, and conse­quētlie, that he wrought not by magicke or falshod, but by the onlie power of his Lorde and Master, and that his writinges are true, and of the same authoritie, that in his lyfe and death he affirmed them to be, that is, th' vndoubted worde of al­mightie God.

THIS HE confirmeth yet further by a fowerth reason, which is, the consent THE. 4. proofe of scripturs. Consent. and approbatiō of all later writers of the Bible, that insued after Moyses. For as among prophane writers of worldlie spi­rite, it is a common fashion for hym that followeth, to reprehende the former, and to hunte after praise by his ancetours dis­grace: so in thes writers of the Bible, it is a most certaine argument that all were guyded by one spirite from God, that in continuance of so manie ages & thousand yeares, no one yet euer impugned th' other, but alwayes the later supposing and ap­prouing the former for true, doth build therupon, as vpon a sure fondatiō. So the writinges of Iosue, doe confirme and ap­proue the writinges of Moises; and the recordes of the Iudges, doe reuerence and allowe the booke of Iosue. The Storie of kiges & chronicles, doth referre it self to the storie of iudges. One Prophete cōfir­meth & other. And finallie, Christ appro­ueth thē all, by the knowē diuisiō of law, psalmes, ad Prophetes, which is a demon­stratiō that all their spirites agreed i one.

[Page 73] And thus hytherto haue bene declared 4. Considera­tions ex­ternal. thes fower considerations, that are ex­ternal or without the Bible: to witte, th' antiquitie and continuāce of the scrip­tures; the maner of their writing and pre­seruing 1 from corruption; The sinceritie, 2 vertue, and simplicitie of their writers; 3 together with their agreement and cohe­rēce 4 in one spirit. But now further (sayeth the learned Iew) if you will but open the booke it self, and looke into the texte, & Considera­tions inter­nal. that which therin is conteined: you shall see gods owne hande, gods owne cha­racters, gods owne signe, and seale, and subscription to the paper. You shall see Gods omnipotencie, Gods spirite, Gods prouidence, no lesse in thes letters of his booke, then you beheld the same before, in the tables of his creatures. Nay, much more (sayeth he,) for that thes letters were deuised for declaration of thos ta­bles, to th' ende, that such as for their blyndnes, could not see hym in his crea­tures; might learne at least to reade hym in his scriptures.

CONSIDER thē first (sayeth he,) the subiecte or argumēt which the scriptures THE. 5. proof of scripture. Their ar­gumēt and Ende. doe handle, together with the scope and ende, wherto they doe leuell. You shall finde, that the first is nothing els but th' a­ctes and gestes of one eternal God, as be­fore hath bene mentioned; and the secōd nothing els, but the onlie glorie & exal­tation of the same great God, together with the saluatiō of mankynde vpō earth. [Page 74] And shall you finde anie writinges in the world besides, that haue so worthie an argument, or so highe an Ende? Reade all the volumes and Monumentes of the Pa­gans; turne ouer all their authors of what kynde, or name, or profession soeuer, and see what mention they make of thes two thinges, I meane, of the honour of God, & of the saluation of man? Reade their Phi­losophers, & see, whether euer they name or pretende thes thinges. Reade their Hi­storiographers, Philoso­phers. and marke how manie battails and victories they attribute vnto God? They will describe to you oftē the particuler cōmēdatiō of euerie Captaine; Historio­graphers. they will defraude no one souldiar of his praise in the victorie; they will attribute much to the wisdome of the general; much to his courage; much to his watch­fulnes; much to fortune. They will attri­bute to the place, to the wynde, to the wether, to the shining of the sunne, to the raising of the dust in th' enimies eyes, to the flying of some litle birde in the ayer, and to a thowsand such petie obseruatiōs besides; but to God nothing. Where as cō ­trarie wise in the scriptures, it is in euerie battail recorded. God deliuered them into their enimies handes: God ouertbrevv them:. God gaue the victorie.

Againe, consider the lawes and law ma­kers among the Gentiles, as Lycurgus, Heathen Lavvma­kers. Solon, Draco, Numa, and the like, and see whether you may finde any one such law, or tending to such an ende, as this is of [Page 75] the Iewes: thou shalt loue thie God vvith all Deut. 6. thie hart, and vvith al thie soule; and shalt loue thy neighbour as thie self. Consider in all the Prophetes and South­sayers. Southesayers and Diuiners amōg the Gen­tiles, whether they vsed to say ī their pre­dictions, as the prophetes of Israel did, Dominus dixit, our Lord hath spoken it; or els, Ego dico, I doe speake it. Compare their Versifiers and Poetes. Versifiers and Poetes, with those of the scripture, and see, whether they haue la­boured in the praise of men, or of God. And where as heathen Poetes, haue filled vp their bookes (as also the most parte of ours at this day,) with matter of car­nal loue: marke whether anie of thē euer brake forth into such pangues of spiri­tual chaste loue, as Holie Dauid did, whē he said: I will loue the, my God, my strēgth, my firmament, my refuge, my deliuerer, Psal. 17. my helper, my protector, and the horne The vehe­ment loue of Dauid. Psal. 72. of my saluation. And againe in an other verse. What haue I desired vpon earth be­sides thee? my flesh and harte haue fainted for thee, thou God of my hart, thou God that arte my parte and portion euerla­sting?

By all which is euident, that as pro­phane Prophane vvritinges treate onlie of men. writinges and writers, which doe treate of men, extoll men, seeke the grace of men, referre all to the commoditie and good liking of men, doe proceede of the spirite of mā, & are subiecte to those infir­mities of falshode, errour, & vanity, wher­with man is intangeled in this life: so the scriptures, which handle matters aboue [Page 76] the compasse of flesh and blood; that re­ferre all to God, and supernatural endes; could not proceede of nature or of hu­mane spirit. For that by nature, the Iewes were men as the Gentiles were, and had their infirmities of flesh & blood, as th' o­ther had. And therfore it must needes be concluded, that thes high and supernatu­ral writinges amonge them, proceeded from God that specially directed them, & gaue them lighte of vnderstanding, aboue all other nations & people in the world.

NEXT AFTER the argument and Ende of the scriptures, the Iew willeth vs to consider the peculier stile and phrase THE. 6. proof of scripturs. Their stile. which they vse; for that (sayeth he) it being different from all other maner of writing in the world, and vnimitable to man: it doth discouer the fingar of God, by which it was framed. See 3. Augustine of this at large, lib. 12 de ciu. Dei. For where as humane writers doc labour much in ador­ninge their stile, and in reducing their wordes to number, weight, measure, and sounde, with addition of manie figures, and other ornamentes, for allurement of the reader: the scripture taketh quite an other course, and vseth a most maruelous simplicitie, therby to accommodate it self Simplicity. to the capacitie of the weakest; but yet, alwayes carying with it so greate pro­funditie, as the best learned, in searche therof, shall confesse their owne igno­rance. Profundity. For examples sake; consider but the verie first wordes of the Bible; In the be­ginning, God created heauen and earth; and the [Page 77] earth vvas emptie and voide, and darkenes vvas Gen. 1. vpon the face of the depth; and the spirit of God vvas caried vpon the vvaters; and God said, lett light be made, and light vvas made, &c. What can be more plaine and simple then this narration, to instruct the most vnlearned aboute the beginning and creation of the world? and yet, when learned men come to examine euerie pointe therof, how & what, and where, and in what manner, & when, thinges were donne; it astonisheth them all, to cōsider the difficulties which they finde, and the depthe of so infinite inscrutable mysteries.

Besides this, there goeth in the same simplicitie, a straunge Maiestie and graui­tie The gra­uitie and Maiestie of speech ī the scriptures. of speech, declaring sufficientlie from how greate and potent a prince it pro­ceedeth. For as great Monarches in their edictes and proclamations, are wonte to speake vnto their subiectes, not in figures and rhetorical phrases, but plainlie, breef­lie, and peremptorilie, to shew their au­thoritie: so the scriptures, to declare whose edictes they be, doe vse the like ma­ner of phrase and stile to all the world, without alluring or flattering anie man, and without respect of Monarche, Empe­rour, prince, or potentate. Fac hoc & viues, doe this and thou shalt liue: Si peccaueris in Deut. 4. 16. 22. me, morieris in aeternum, if thou sinne against me, thou shalt die euerlastingly.

And albeit (as I haue said) the scripturs doe vse this simplicitie of speech, and doe not admitte that kynde of painted and ar­tificial [Page 78] stile, which humane writers dos so much couet: yet in persuading, instruc­ting, The force of the scrip­tures in mouing af­fections. mouing of affections, and all other effectes whiche speech or writinge can worke; there is no comparason, (a thing most wōderful,) betwene anie other wri­tinges in the world, and thes. Wherof I. could alleage manie proofes and exam­ples, but that it were to longe. Let anie: man reade attentiuelie, but the first chap­ter of the prophetie of Esay, and cōpare it with anie one parte or parcel of Tullies or of Demostines oratiōs, & see whether the difference of wordes, be as great as the difference of motions? Let diuers hymnes and holie psalmes of the scriptures, be cō ­ferred with the most pathetical poemes that mans wit hath inuēted, and see, whe­ther there be anie comparason in styrring and fiaring of affections, or no?

This am I sure, that Iosephus the Iew, Faluins. Io­sephus de Antiq. Iu­daic. See S. Hie­ro n. lib. de script. Eccl. who for glorie of his eloquence, had his image of mettal, erected by Titus the Em­perour ī the market place of Rome, wrote the same storie, which the scriptures con­teine, and bestowed much labour and hu­mane cūning therin. But yet euen in thos places, when he endeuoured most to shew his arte, as in the sacrifice of Isaac by his Gen. 22. father, and in the meeting of Iephte with his onely daughter, which by vow he Iudic. 11. was cōstrained to put to death; the scrip­tures are able to pearse the hart, & wring owt teares of the reader, whom Iosephus will not greatelie moue with his rheto­rical [Page 79] narration, though otherwise verie learned and artificiallie penned.

Aristaeus that learned Gētile, of whom Tvvo mi­racles re­ported by Aristaeus. we haue made mention before, who was in special fauour with Ptolomie the se­cond greate Monarche of Egipt, (aboute 300 yeares before Christes natiuitie,) and a chief doer in procuring the transla­tion of the Hebrue. Bible into the greeke language, reported of his owne know­ledge Aristaeus li­bello de translat Bi­bliorum & apud Euse. 1. 8. de praep­euāg. ca... to that king two straunge acci­dentes which had happened in his time, & which he had vnderstoode of the par­ties themselues, to whom they had hap­pened. The first was, of Theopompus an eloquent Historiographer, who hauing Theopōpus. translated certaine thinges out of the Bi­ble, and endeuouring to adorne the same with vaine colours of eloquence; could not perfourme his desire, but was strokē with a suddain maze and gyddines in the head, and was warned in his sleepe, not to proceede further in that worke after that sorte, for that such manner of style, was to base for so high matters, as the scrip­tures conteined.

The other example was of one Theo­dectes, a writer of tragaedies, who tolde Theode­ctes. Aristaeus, that once he attēpted to bring certaine matters out of the Iewes Bible; into a pagan tragedie, and that theruppō he was presentlie strikē blīd; wherwith, he being asto nished, and falling to re­pentance for that he had donne, and decis­ting from the enterprise, (as also Theo­pompus [Page 80] did:) they were both of them re­stored againe to their healthes. And thus much did thes three Paganes confesse, of the authoritie, diuinitie, and peculier sa­cred stile of our scriptures.

BVT NOVV further it insueth in or­der, that after the subiect and phrase, we THE. 7. proofe of scripturs. The Con­tentes. should consider a litle the contentes of thes scriptures, whiche will perhappes, more clearlie direct vs to the vewe of their authour, then any thing els that hy­therto hath bene said. And for our present purpose, I will note onlie two special thinges conteined in the Bible. The first Highe do­ctrines. st albe certaine high & hiddē doctrines, which are aboue the reach and capacitie of humane reason, and consequētlie, could neuer fall into mans braine to inuent thē. As for example; that all this wonderful frame of the world, was created of no­thing, where as philosophie saith, that of Nothing, nothing can be made: that Angels, being created spirites, were damned eter­nallie for their sinnes: that Adam, by diso­bedience in Paradise, drew all his poste­ritie into th' obligation of that his synne; and that, the womas seed should deliuer vs from the same: That God is one in sub­stance, and three in persons: that the secōd of thes persons, beig God, should become man and die vpon a Crosse for mankinde: that after hym, the way to all felicitie & honour, should be by contempt, suffering, and dishonour. Thes doctrines (I say) and many more, conteined in the Bible, being [Page 81] thinges aboue mans capacitie to deuise, and nothing agreinge with humane rea­son: most euidentlie doe declare, that God was th' authour & enditer of the scripturs, for that by hym onlie, and from no other, thes highe and secret mysteries, could be reueiled.

The second thing conteined in scrip­tures, The pro­pleties in scripture declare their au­thour. Esa. 41. 23. that could not proceede but from God alone, are certaine propheties or fortellinges of thinges to come. Wherin God hymself prouoketh th' Idoles of the Gentiles, to make experience of their po­wer, in thes wordes: Declare vnto vs vvhat shall insue hereafter, & thereby vve shall knovv that you are Godes in deed. Which is to be vnderstoode; if they could fortell parti­culerlie & plainlie, what was to come, in thinges meerlie contingent or depending of mans will: they should therby declare their power to be diuine.

For albeit thes Idoles of Gentiles, as Hovv the deuils, and other crea­tures, may fortell thīgs to come. Apollo and other that gaue foorth Ora­cles, (which were nothing els in deed, but certaine wicked spirites that tooke vpon them these names,) did some times happen vpon the truth, and fortel thinges to come; as also some Astrologers, South­sayers, and Magitians doe, ether by for­sight in the starres & other elementes, or by th' assistance of thes wicked spirites and deuils: yet are the thinges which they pronosticate, ether natural and not con­tingent; & so may be forseene & fortolde in their causes; (as raine, heate, colde, [Page 82] wīdes, & the like:) or els, if they be meere accidental; thes predictions of theirs are only coniectures, and so, most incertaine and subiecte to errours.

This testifieth Porphyrie the greate pa­tron of Paganisme, in a special booke of Th' opinion of a healthē touching the pro­pheties of his Godes. th' answers of his Godes, wherin he swea­reth that he hath gathered trulie without addition or detraction, the Oracles that were most famous before his tyme, with the false and vncertaine euent therof; In consideration of which euent, he setteth downe his iudgment of their power in predictions, after this manner. The Godes Porphy. li. de resp. & oracu. doe fortell some naturall thinges to come, for that they doe obserue the order and coniunctiō of their natural causes: But of thinges that are contingēt, or doe depend of mans vvill, they haue but con­iectures only, in that by their subtilitie and cele­ritic, they preuent vs. But yet they often tymes doe lye, and deceaue vs in both kyndes: for that, as natural thinges are variable; so mans vvill is much more mutable.

Thus farre Porphyrie of the propheties of his Godes, whereunto agreeth an other heathen of greate credit, among the Grae­cians, named Oenomaus, who for that he had bene much delighted with Oracles, & Oenomaus de falsitate oraculorū & de arti­ficibus ma­leficiis. more deceaued: wrote a special booke in th' ende, of their falshod and lies; and yet sheweth, that in manie thinges wherin they deceiued, it was not easie to cōuince them of opē falshod, for that they would inuolue their answers (of purpose,) with such obscurities, generalities, equiuo ca­tions, [Page 83] and doubtefulnes; as alwayes they would leaue them selues a corner wherin to saue their credites, when th' euent should proue false. As for example, when Craesus that famous & riche Monarche of Deceptful. Oracles. Lidia, cōsulted with Apollo, whether he should make warre against the Persiās, & therby obtaine their Empire or no? Apol­lo, desirous of bloodshed, (as all wicked spirites are;) gaue his oracle in thes wordes, for deceauing of Craesus. If Crae­sus vvithout feare, shal passe ouer Halys; (this Euseb. li. [...] de praep. euā. ca. 10. was a riuer that laye betwene hym and Persia,) he shal bringe to confusion a greate riche kingdome: Vpon whiche wordes, Craesus passed ouer his armie, in hope to get Persia, but so one after, he lost Lidia, by euel vnderstanding of this doubteful pro­phetie.

This then is th' imbecilitie of both hu­mane The circū ­stances of Propheties; set dovvne in the scrip­tures. & angelical power, ī pronosticatig things to come, which are mere cōtingēt. In which kinde, not withstanding, seing that the scriptures haue manie and almost infinite propheties, fort old manie yeares, (& some tymes ages) before they came to passe; sett downe in plaine, particuler, and resolut speech; at such tymes as there was nether cause to coniecture them, nonpro­babilitie that euer they should be true; deliuered by simple and vnlearned per­sons, that could forsee nothing by skill or arte; and yet that all thes by their euentes haue proued most true, and neuer anie one iote in the same haue fayled: this (I say) [Page 84] alone, doth conuince most apparentlie, (all proofes and reasons, and other argu­mentes laid a syde,) that thes scriptures are of God and of his eternal and infalli­ble spirite. And therfore of thes prophe­ties, will I alleage in this place, some few examples.

Abraham the first father and special Patriarche of the Iewes, had manie pro­pheties 1. The pro­phetie to Abraham for his po­steritie. Gen. 12. 13. 15. 17. 18. &c. and predictions made vnto hym, as of his issue, when he had yet none, nor euer lyke to haue; of his inheritinge the land of Canaan, and the lyke. But this which followeth, is wōderfull, of his po­sterities discent into Egipt; of their tyme of seruitude and manner of deliuerauce thēce; (the same being fortolde more thē fower hundreth yeares before it was ful­filled;) & at that tyme whē no likelihode therof ī the world appeared. The wordes are thes. Knovv thou before hande, that thy issue shal be a straunger in a forraine lande, and they Gen. 15. shal subiect them to seruitude, and shall asstict them for fovver hundred yeares; but yet I vvill iudge the nation vnto vvhome they haue bene slaues, and ester that, they shal departe thence vvith greate riches. This is the prophetie; and how exactelie it was afterwarde fulfilled, by the ruine of the Egytians, and deliuerance of the Israelites, euen at that Exod. 12. Gal. 3. tyme which is here appointed: not onelie the booke of Exodus doth declare, wher the whole storie is layed downe at large: but also the cōsent of Porphv. li. 4. cōt. Chri. Appiō. l. 4. cōt. Iudaeos. heathen wryters, as before hath bene touched. And it is [Page 85] speciallie to be noted, that this prophetie was so cōmon and well knowen amōg all Iewes, from Abrahams tyme downe vnto Moyses, and so deliuered by tradition frō fathers to their children: as it was the onelie comfort and staye, not onlie of all that people in their seruitude of Egypt: but also of Moyses and others, that go­uerned the people afterwardes, for fortie yeares together in the deserte, & was the onelie meane in deede, wherby to pacifie them in their distresses and miseries; and therfore Moyses in euerie exhortation almost, maketh mention of this promisse and prophetie, as of a thing well knowen vnto them all, and not deuised or inuēted by hym selfe or anie other.

Longe after this, Iacob, that was Abra­hams 2. The pro­phetie for the gouern­ment of Iuda. nepheue, being in Egipt, & making his testament; said of his sowerth sonne Iuda. Iuda, thie brothers shal praise thee, and the childrē of thie father, shal bovve vnto the &c. the Scepter shal not be taken from Iuda, vntil he come, that is to be sent, and he shal be the expecta­tion of nations. Which later parte of the Gen. 49. prophetie, all Hebrewes doe expounde that it was meant of the comming of Mes­sias, which was fulfilled almost two thou­sand yeares after, at the coming of Christ, as shalbe shewed in an other special chapter. For at that tyme, kinge Herod, 2 straūger, putt owt quite the line of Iuda, Ioseph. de antiq. li. 14. from the gouernment of Iurie. But for the first parte, touching Iudas scepter; it is wonderfull to consider the circumstances [Page 86] of this prophetie.

For first, when it was spokē and vttered by Iacob, there was no probabilitie of anie Scepter at all, to be amōg the Iewes, for that the Israelites or sōnes of Iacob at that daye, were poore and few in nūber, and neuer like to be a distincte nation of themselues, or to depart foorth of Egypt againe. And secondlie, if anie such thinge should come to passe, as they might be a people, and haue a scepter or gouernmēt of their owne: yet was it not lyklie, that Iuda and his posteritie should possesse the same, for that he had three elder brothers, to witt, Ruben, Simeō, and Leuie, who in Vnlikeli­hodes of this prophetie. all likelihode, were to goe before hym. And thirdlie, when Moyses recorded and putt in wryting this prophetie, (whiche was diuers hundreth yeares after Iacob had spoken it,) it was muche lesse likelie that euer it should be true, for that Moy­ses, then present in gouernmēt, was of the tribe of Leuie, & Iosue designed by Godfor his successour, was of the tribe of Ephrai, Exod. 2. Iosue. 19. and not of Iuda. Which maketh greatelie for the certaintie of this record. For that it is most apparent, that Moyses would neuer haue putt suche a prophetie in writing, to the disgrace of his owne tribe, and to the preiudice and offence of Rubē, Simeon, Ephraim, and other tribes; nether would they euer haue suffred such a dero­gation, but that it was euident to them by tradition, that their Grandsire Iacob had spoken it, albeit then presentelie, there [Page 87] was no greate likelihode, that euer after, it should come to be fulfilled.

And this was for the tyme of Moyses: but yet consider further, that from Moy­ses to Samuel, (that was last of all the Iudges,) there passed fower hūdreth years more, & yet was there no apparēce of ful­fillinge 1. Reg. 1. & 8. this prophetie in Israel; for that the tribe of Iuda was not established in gouernmēt. At lengthe they came to haue kinges to rule, & then was there chosen 1. Reg. 9. one Saul to that place, not of the tribe of Iuda, but of Beniamin, & he indued with diuers children to succede hym. And who would then haue thought that this pro­phetie could euer haue bene fulfilled? but yet for that it was gods worde, it must needes take place; and therfore when no man thought therof, there was a Dauid. poore shepheard chosen owt of the tribe of Iu­da, to be kinge, & the regiment & scepter so established in his posteritie; that albeit 1. Reg. 16. manie of his descendentes offended God more greeuouslie, then euer Saul did, who was putt out before: and albeit ten tri­bes 3. Reg. 12. 2. Para. 11 at once brake from Iuda, and neuer re­turned to obedience againe, but conspired with the Gentiles and other enimies of The vvon­derful pro­uidence of God to­vvards the house of Iuda. euerie syde, to extinguishe the said king­dome and regiment of Iuda: yet for the fulfilling of this prophetie, the gouernmēt of Iuda held owt still, for more then a thowsand and two hundred yeares toge­ther, vntill Herodes tyme as I haue said. Which is more, then anie one familie in [Page 88] the world besides, can shew for his no­bilitie Euseb. in Chron. or continuance in gouernment.

The same Iacob when he came to blesse his litle nepheues Manasses, and Ephraim, 3. The pro­phetie for the greate­nes of Ephraim aboue Ma­nasses. that were Iosephs children; though hym self were now dimme of sight, and could not well discerne them, yet dyd he putt his right hande vpon the head of the you­ger, and his left hand vpon the elder, and that of purpose, as it proued afterwarde. For when Ioseph their father misliked the placing of their Grād-fathers hādes, & would haue remoued the right hande fró Gen. 48. Ephraim, and haue placed it vpon the head of Manasses, that was the elder: Ia­cob would not suffer hym, but answered. I knovv my Jonne, I knovv, that Manasses is the elder; & be shall be multiplied into manie people; but yet his yonger brother shalbe greater then be. Which afterward was fulfilled, for that Ephraim was alwayes the greater and Iosue 16. & 17. strōger tribe, and in fine, became the head of the kyngdome of Israel, or of the ten tribes, wherof there was no suspition or Eccle. 47. Esay. 7. & 28. Icrem. 31. Ezec. 37. Oze. 5. likelihode, when Iacob spake this, or when Moyses recorded it. And how then came Iacob to forsee this, so manie hun­dred yeares before? as also to forsee and fortell the particuler places of his chil­drens habitations, in the lande of pro­misse? as Zabulon at the sea side; Aser in Gen. 49. the fertile pastures; and other the like, Iosue. 14. Exod. 12. Gal. 3. Act. 13. fower hundred yeares, and more. Wher­hence had he this (I say) to fortell what [Page 89] lottes so longe after should appointe, but onelie from God, who gouerned their lottes?

The like might be asked concerninge 4. The for­sight of Moyses. Nu. n. 34. 35. 36. Iosue. 15. 16. 17. Moyses, who before his death in the de­sert, deuided out the lande of Canaan, to euerie tribe, euē as though he had bene in possession therof, & as afterwarde, it fell out by casting of lottes, as in the booke of Iosue it doth appeare. And could any hu­mane witt or science (thinke you) forsee, what eche tribe should attaine (after his death) by drawinge of lottes? Againe, the same Moyses forsawe and fortolde in pu­blique hearing of all the people, how in tymes to come, longe after his death, the Iewes should forsake God, and for their Deut. 31. & 32. synnes be cast into manie banishementes, and finallie be forsaken, and the Gentiles receaued in their roome, as in deed it Deut. 32. v. 21. came to passe. And whence (trow you) could he learne this, but from God alone?

In the booke of Iosue, there is a curse 5. The pro­phetie for the perpe­tūal desola­tion of Ieri­cho. Ios. 6. layed vpō the place where Iericho stoode, and vpon what soeuer person should goe about to rebuild the same; to wit, that in his eldest sonne, he should lay the foundations, and in his yongest sonne, should he builde the gates therof: which is to saye, that before the foundations were layed, and gates buil­ded, he should be punished with the death of all his children. Which thing was ful­filled almost fiue hundred yeares after, in one Hiel, who presumed vnder wicked kinge Achab to rebuild Iericho againe, [Page 90] and was terrified from the same, by the suddaine death of Abiram and Segub his children, as the booke of kinges repor­tech, 3. Reg. 16 according to the vvorde of our Lord, vvhich he had spoken in the hande of Iosue, the fonne of Nun; And since that tyme to this, no man ether Iewe or Gētile, hath taken vpon hym to raise againe the said Citie, albeit the situation be most pleasant, as by relation of Stories and Geographers ap­peareth.

In the third booke of kinges, it is re­corded, 6. The pro­phetie for the birth and actes of Iosues. 3. Reg. 12 that when Ieroboam had with­drawen ten tribes from th' obedience of Roboam, kinge of Iuda; to th' ende they might neuer haue occasion to revnite thē selues againe to Iuda, by their goinge to sacrifice in Ierusalem, (as by the law they were appointed:) he builded for them a goodlie gorgeous highe Aulter in Bethel, and there cōmanded them to doe their de­uotions. And when he was one day thero present hymself, and offering his incense vpon the said Aulter, and all the people lookinge on; there came a man of God (sayeth the scripture) and stoode before the Aulter, and cried out aloude, and spake thes wordes: O Aulter, Aulter, this 3. Reg. 13 sayeth our Lorde; behold, a childe shalbe borne of the hovvse of Dauid, vvhose name shalbe, Iosias, and he shal sacrifice vpon thee, thes idolatrous priestes that novv burne francomsense vpon the, and he shal burne the bones of men vpon thee.

Thus spake that man of God, in the presence and hearinge of all the people [Page 91] more then three hundred yeares before Iosias was borne; and it was registred prosentelie, (according to the manner of that tyme, which I haue noted before,) and with the same, were registred also the miracles which happened about that fact; as that, the Aulter clefte in two vpō the mans wordes; and Ieroboam exten­dinge owt his hande to apprehend hym, lost presentelie the vse and feeling therof, vntill it was restored againe by the said holie mans prayers; who notwithstan­ding, Disobediē ­ce punished greenouslie in Gods dearest. for that he disobeyed Gods com­mandement in his returne, and dyd eate with a prophet of Samar a, (which was forbidden hym:) he was slaine in his way homeward by a Lion, and his bodie was brought backe againe & buried in Bethel, nigh the said Aulter, amongest the sepul­chers of those idolatrous preestes of that place; but yet with a superscription, vpon his tombe, conteining his name, and what had happened.

There passed three hundred yeares, 4. Reg. 23 and Iosias was borne, and came to reigne in Iuda; And one daye cōming to Bethel to ouerthrow the Aulter, and to destroye the sepulchers of those idolitrous priestes that had bene buried i that place; whē he began to breake their tombes; he fownde by chance; the sepulcher of the said man of God, with the superscription vpon it. By which superscription, and by relation of the citizēs of Bethel, when he percea­ued that it was the sepalcher of hym that [Page 92] had fortolde his byrth, his name, and his doinges, so manie hundred years before he was borne: he lett the same stande vn­touched, as the fowerth booke of kinges doth declare. Cap. 23.

Now consider, whether among anie people in the world, but onlie amonge the Iewes, ther were euer anie such pro­phetie, so certaine, so particuler, so longe fortolde before the tyme, and so exactelie fulfilled? But yet the holie scriptures are full of the lyke, and tyme permitteth me onlie to touch some few of the principal.

Esay the prophet, is wonderful in for­telling the mysteries and actes of the Mes­sias; his natiuitie, his life, and all the par­ticulers that happened in his passiō. In so much, that S. Ierome sayeth, he may seeme rather to write a storie of deedes past, Micron. in Prolog. Galeat. then a prophetie of euentes to come. But yet among other thinges, it is to be no­ted, 7. The pro­phetie for the destruc­tion of Hie­rusalem & Babylon. that he liuing in a peaceable and pro­sperous tyme in Iuda, when the Iewes were in amitie and greate securitie with the Babyloniās; he forsawe and fortolde the destruction of Ierusalem by the said Babylonians, and the greeuous captiuitie of Iewes vnder them, as also the destru­ction of Babylon againe by Cyrus kinge 4. Reg. 20 v. 16. Esay. 5. of Persia, whose expresse name and great­nes, he published in writing, almost two hundred yeares before he was borne; saying in the person of God; First, to Eze­chias king of Iuda, that reioysed in the frindshippe he had with Babylon: behold 4. Reg. 20 [Page 93] the dayes shall come, vvhen all that thou and thye fathers haue layed up, shall be caried avvay to Babylon, and thy children shalbe eunuches in the king of Babylons Palace. And next, to Babylō he said; the destruction of Babylon, vvhich Esay Esay. 13. the sonne of Amos savve &c. houle & crie, for that the day of our Lorde is at hande: &c. And third­lie, to Cyrus, (not yet borne,) who was preordained to destroye the same, and to restore the people from banishemēt, & to rebuild the temple in Ierusalē, he sayeth thus: I say to Cyrus; thou art my shepheard, and Esay. 24. thou shalt fulfill all my vvill. I say to Ierusalem; 8. The vvon­derful pro­phetie for Cyrus king of Persians. Esay. 25. thou shalt be builded againe. I say to the temple; thou shalt be founded again. This sayeth our Lord, to my amointed Cyrus; I vvill goe before thee, & vvill humble the glorious people of the earthe, in thy presence; I vvill breake their brasen gates, & crushe in peeces their yron barres; for my seruant Iacobs sake haue I called thee by thie Name, and haue armed the, vvher as thou This he sayeth, for that Cyrus vvas an in­fidel. knovvest not me.

Can anie thing be more clearlie or mi­raculouslie spoken in the world, then to name a heathé not yet borne, that should conquerre so stronge a Monarchie as Ba­bylon was, at this tyme, & should builde againe the temple of Ierusalem, which others of his owne religiō had destroyed before hym? what cause, what reason, what lykeliehode, could be of this? yet Esay speaketh it so confidentelie, as he Esay. 13. sayeth, that he savve it: and he nameth two witnesses therof, that is, Vrias and Zacha­rias, that were not borne in manie yeares after, saying; and I tooke vnto me tvvo faith­ful [Page 94] vvitnesses, Vrias the prieste, and Zacharias Esay. 8. v. 2. the sonne of Barachias. Wherof the first was a Prophet in Ieremies tyme, a hundred years after Esay; & the secōd liued fower­s Iere. 26. v. 20. kore years after that againe, in the dayes of pari', as by the beginig of his prophetie appeareth; and yet both (as you see) were Zac. 1. v. 1 distinctely named by Esay so long before.

And whereas this booke of Esay was pronoūced opēlie to the people (as other Circumstā ­ces of cer­taine truth. propheties also were) and published into manie thousand handes before the capti­uitie of Babylon fellowt: and then car­ried also with the people, and dispersed in Chaldea, & other partes of the world: there can be no possible suspition of for­gerie in this matter; for that all the worlde both sawe it, and redde it, manie yeares before the thing came to passe; yea, when there was no opiniō of suche possi­bilitie.

The same captiuitie and destruction of Ierusalem, by the Babyloniens, was pro­phetied 9. The pro­pheties and doinges of Ieremie in the siege of Hierusalē. by Ieremie, a hundred yeares after Esay, and a litle before the matter came to passe. Yea whiles the Babylonians were aboute the walles of Ierusalem, and be­sieged the same for two yeares together, Ieremie was within and tolde euerie man that it was but in vaine to defende the Citie, sor that God had now deliuered it. And albeit he were accompted a traitour for so speaking, (especiallie when by an armie of Egipt that came to th' ayde of Ie­rusalem frō Pharao, the siege of Babylo­nians [Page 95] was raised for a certaine tyme:) yet Ieremie continued still his asseueration, and said to Zedechias the king, thou shalt Ierem. 37. v. 16. be deliuered into the handes of the king of Baby­lon. And to the people; haec dicit Dominus, tradendo tradetur haec ciuitas, &c. this sayeth Ierem. 38 v. 3. our Lord, this Citie most certainlie shalbe deliuered into the handes of the Babylo­nians. And so he continued, notwithstan­ding he were putt in prison, and whipt, & threatened daylie to be hanged; vntil in deed the Citie was taken, and Zedechias Ierem. 39. 4. Reg. 24 & 25. eyes puld out, his children slaine before his face, and all other, thinges perfour­med, which Ieremie had prophotied and fortolde them before.

And which is yet more maruelous, Ie­remie dyd not onelie fortell the particu­lers of this captiuitie, but also the deter­minate tyme, how longe it should indure, sayinge: And all this land of Jurie shal be into vvildernesse, and astoniednesse; and all this people Ierem. 25. v. 11. The yeares fortolde of the capti­uitie of Ba­bylon. shal serue the kinge of Babycon for threescore and ten yeares, and vvhen three scare and ten yeares shalbe complete, I vvill visite vpon the kinge of Babylon, and vpon that Natiō, sayeth our Lordo, and I vvill lay the same into aeternal desolation. Eut vpon Iuda, vvill I cast my pleasant eyes, and vvil bringe them backe to this land againe, &c. In which prophetie is conteined, first the Ierem. 24. v. 5. &c. 29. v. 10. particuler tyme, how longe this captiui­tie should indure. Sechdlie, the destruction of Babylon, and of that Monarchie, by the Persians: and thirdlie the returning home of the Iewes againe; which three thinges [Page 96] to haue bene after fulfilled, not onelie Es­dras, 1. Esd. 1. & 2. 3. Esd. 2. that liued at that tyme, and was an actor in perfourmaunce of the last; but all other heathen writers besides, doe re­corde and testifie.

And this prophetie of Ieremie, was so famous and certainlie beleeued amongest all the Iewes, in the tyme of their captiui­tie: as when the daye of expiration drew neare, Daniel writeth thus of hym selfe: In the first yeare of Darius, I Daniel, vnderstoode in the scriptures, the number of the seuētie yeares, Dan. 9. v. 1. vvherof God spake to Ieremie, that they should be fulfiled, touching the desolation of Ierusalem; and I turned my face to my Lord God, and besoght hym, in fasting and sakcloth, &c. Mother onelie the Iewes vnderstoode and beleeued this Gentiles be­leeued the scripture. prophetie; but euen Cyrus hym self, that was a Gētile, gaue full credit ther vnto, & therby was iuduced to restore the Iewes; as appeareth both by his owne wordes 1. Esd. 1. 3. Esd. 2. and proclamation, sett downe by Esdras, that executed the same; & by his deedes also, in restoring home the Iewes, and re­building their temple at his owne great charges, as all historiographers of the heathens doe confesse.

I might here alleage infinite other examples, and make no ende, if I would followe the multitude of propheties which are dispsed throughout the whole scripture? I might shew how Daniel for­tolde The pro­pheties of Daniel. to Balsasar king of Babylon, in the myddest of his triūphe, and in the hearing of all his peeres, the destruction which in Dan. 5. [Page 97] sned vpon hym the verie same night after.

I might alleage how the same Daniel in the first yeare of Darius the Median, in Dan. 11. the beginning of that second Monarchie of Medians and Persians, fortolde Beholde three kings shall yet stād in Per­sia, and the fovverth shalbe rich aboue all the rest. how manie kinges should regine after in Per­sia, & how the last (who was the fowerth after hym, & his name also Dariꝰ,) should fight against the Graeciās, & be ouercome by a Graeciā king (which was Alexāder;) and how that kingdome also of Greece, should be deuided & torne in peeces, after Dan. 11. v. 2. Alexanders death, and not passe to his po­steritie, as Iustine and other heathen wri­ters Instin. hist. l. 12. & 13. doe testifie that it was, by Antigo­nus, Perdiccas, Seleucus, Antiochus, Pto­lomaeus and other Captaines of Alexan­der, that, deuided the same among them selues, aboue a hundred yeares after Da­niel was deade.

I might declare how the same Daniel The sovver Monarchies of Assyri­ans, Per­sians, Grae­cians, and [...] Romans. forsawe and fortolde, the fower greate Monarchies of the world, and described the same as distinctelie, as if he had liued in them all, and as by experience we finde since to be true. I might alleage, the parti­culer descriptiō of the fight betwene Da­rius Dan. 2. Dan. 8. The for­telling of great Ale­xander. Ioseph. l. 1. de antiq. Iudaic. [...]. and Alexander, sett downe by Daniel vnder the names of the greate Ramme & the fearce Goate with one horne, which Goate, hymself interpreteth to be meant of a Graecian kinge that should conquer the Persians. And therfore Alexander (as Iosephus reporteth) comming to Ierusa­lem about a hūdred yeares after, and rea­ding [Page 98] this prophetie of Daniel interpre­ted vnto hym by Iaddus the highe priest; assured hym self that he was the man therin signified, and so, after sacrifice dōne to the God of Israel, (of whom he affir­med, that he had appeared vnto hym in Macedonie, & had exhorted hym to take this warre in hand,) and after he had be­stowed much honour and manie benefits, vpon the highe priest and inhabitans of Ierusalem: he went forward in his warre against Darius with greate alacritie, and had that famous victorie which all the world knoweth.

A hundreth such propheties more, which are as plaine, as euident, and as di­stincte as this, I might alleage of Elias, Elizaeus, Samuel, Dauid, Ezechiel, the twelue lesser prophetes, and of other which I haue not named. And in verie truth the whole scripture is nothing els, but a diuine kynde of bodie replenished throughout with the vital spirit of pro­phetie, and euerie daye some prophetie or other is fulfilled, (though we marke it not) and shalbe to the worldes ende.

And the miracle of this matter is yet more increased, if we consider what man­ner VVhat maner of persons our prophetes vvere. of people they were for the moste parte, by whome thes propheties of hyd­den thiges were vttered: to witt, not such men as could gather their forsight of thinges by Astronomie or Astrologie, that is, by contemplation of the starres, as some fond Gentiles did pretēde, (though [Page 99] Ptolomie denye that such thinges can be Ptolo. in l. de fructu. forrolde but only by inspiratiō frō God;) nether yet were they so sharpe witted, as to attaine to prophetie by stronge imagi­nations, Moses Nar­bon. in lib. Abubacher & [...]. as most vainlie Auerroes and his followers hold that some man may; nor finallie, were they so delicatelie fed as by exacte dyet and rules of Alchymie, to come to prophetie, as Alchymists dreame that a man may doe, and that Apollonius Thyanaeus did, who by Stellified meates Roger. Ba­co. l. de sex. sciēt. expe­rimentalib. (as they speake) came to be Stellified hym self, and so by helpe of his glasse called Alchymusi, to fortell some matters and af­faires to come. Our prophetes (I say) knew none of thes phantasticall deuises, being for the most parte, poore, simple, & vnlearned men, as in particuler is recor­ded, that Dauid was a shepheard, & Amos was a keeper of Oxen; yea, often tymes Amos 1. they were women, as Marie the sister of Aaron, called in scripture by the name of Exod. 15. Prophetesse. Debora the wife of Lapi­doth; Anna the mother of Samuel; Eliza­beth the mother of Iohn Baptist; Anna Iudic. 5. 1. Reg. 2. the daughter of Phanuel; and finallie, the most holy and blessed virgine Marie, with the daughters of philippe, and many such Luc. 1. &c 2. other both in the olde and new testamēt, Act. 21. who prophetied stranglie, nor could pos­siblie receyue suche forknowledge of thinges to come, but only from the spirite of God, and by inspiration of the Holie Ghost, which is a manifest demonstratiō, of th' excellencie of Holie write, and of [Page 100] the certaintie conteined therin.

AND NOVV albeit, this might seeme THE. 8. proofe of scripturs. Approba­tiō of hea­then vvri­ters. sufficient in the iudgement and consciēce of euerie reasonable man, (as the Iew sup­poseth) to proue that the scriptures be onlie from God, and cōsequentlie by thē, that there is a God: yet hath he one rea­son more to confirme their sinceritie, which I will alleage in this place, and therwith make an ende. His reason is, that although thes Holie writinges whiche proceede of Gods spirite, doe not take their testimonie or confirmation from mā: yet for more euidencie of the truth, God hath so prouided, that all the principall and most straunge and wonderful thinges recompted in scripture, should be repor­ted also, and confirmed by insidels, Pagās, Gentiles, and heathē writers them selues; albeit in some poynctes, they dyffer from the scripture in the manner of their narration, for that they adioine supersti­tions therunto. Which maketh the more for approbation of the thinges, for that hereby it appeareth, they tooke not their stories directelie from the Bible, but by tradition and most auncient antiquities of their owne.

First then he sheweth, that the creation of the world, which is the maruaile of all I. The crea­tion of the vvorlde. Gen. 1. & 2. maruailes, with the infusiō of mans soule from God, is both graunted and agreed vpon, by all those heathen Philosophers whiche I haue cited before, (albeit the particularities be not so sett downe by [Page 101] them, as they are in the scriptures,) & by all other, that doe sce in reason, that of necessity, their must be yelded some Crea­tor of thes thinges. Next to this, the flud 2. The slud of Noe. of Noe is mentioned by diuers most aun­cient heathē writers; as by Berosus Chal­daeus, Ieronymus Egyptius, Nicolaus Da­mascenus, Gen. 6 7. 8. Abydenus, and others, accor­ding as both Iosephus and Eusebius doe proue. And in Bresile and other countries Iosep. lib. 1. antiq. Iu­daie. Euseb. li. 9. de prap. Euāg. ca. 4. discouered in our age, where neuer tea­chers were knowen to be before, they talke of a certaine drownig of the world, whiche in tymes past happened; and doe say, that this was left vnto them by tradi­tion from tyme out of minde, by the first inhabitantes of those places.

Of the longe life of the first Patriar­ches, 3. The longe life of the first fathers. according as the scripture reporteth it, not onlie the former authours, but also Manethus, that gathered the historie of the Egyptiās; Molus Hestiaeus, that wrote Gen. 5. & 10. & 11. the actes of the Phaenicians; Hesiedus, He­cataeus Abderida, Helanicus, Acusilaus, & Ephorus, doe testifie, that thes first inha­bitantes of the world liued commonly a thousand yeares a peece, and they alleage the reason therof to be, both for the mul­tiplication of people, and for bringing all sciences to perfectiō, especially Astro­nomie and Astrologie, which, (as they write,) could not be brought to sufficient perfection, by anie one mā that had liued lesse then 600. yeares, in which space the greate yeare (as they call it) returneth [Page 102] aboute.

Of the Tower of Babylon, and of the confusion of tongues at the same, Eusebius 4. The Toure of Babylon. citeth the testimonies at large, both of Abydenus that liued about king Alexan­ders time, and of Sibylla, as also the Gen. 11. wordes of Hestiaeus, concerning the lande Enseb. li. 9. de praepar. cap 4. of Sennaar, where it was builded. And thes Gentiles doe shew by reason, that if there had not bene some such miracle in the diuision of tongues; no doubt, but that all tongues, being deriued of one, (as all Marke this reason. mē are of one father,) the same tongues would haue retained the self same rootes and principles, as in all dialectes or deri­uations of tongues we see that it cōmeth to passe. But now (saye they) in manie ton­gues at this day, we see that there is no likelihode or affinitie among them, but all different th' one from th' other, and therby it appeareth, that they were made diuers and distincte euen from the be­ginning.

Of Abraham and his affaires, I haue 5. Of Abra­ham. alleaged some heathen writers before, as Berosus, Hecataeus, and Nicolaus Damas­cenus. But of all other, Alexander Poly­hist Gen. 11. 12. 13. 14. &c. or alleageth Eupolemus most at large of Abrahams being in Egypt, and of his teaching them Astronomie there; of his Alex. Poly­hist. lib. de Iudaica hi­storia. fight and victorie in the behalf of Lot; of his entertainement by king Melchisa­dech; of his wife & sister Sara; & of other his doinges, especiallie of the sacrifice of his sonne Isaac. To whome agreeth Melo, Melo, li. de fraudibus [Page 103] in his bookes writen against the Iewes, Iudaeorum. Artaban in Iudaeorum­hist. and Artabanus. And of the straunge lake wherinto Sodoma & Gomorra were tur­ned by their destruction called mare mor­tuum, the dead sea, wherin nothig can liue; Gal. de sim­plic. pausan. in Eliae. So­lin. in Poli. hist. Tacit. li. vlt. hist. both Galen, Pausanias, Solinus, Tacitus, & Strabo, doe testifie, and shew the particu­ler wonders therof.

From Abraham downe to Moyses, wri­teth verie particulerly the fornamed Ale­xander, 6. Of Isaac, Iacob, Iob, Ioseph &c. albeit he mingle some tymes cer­taine fables, wherby appeareth, that he tooke his storie not owt of the Bible wholie. And he alleageth one Leodemus, Gen. 15. 16. 17. 18. &c. who (as he sayeth) liued with Moy­ses, and wrote the same self thinges that Moyses did; so that thes writers agree al­most in all thinges, touching Isaac, Iacob, Ioseph, and all their affaires, euen vnto Moyses; and with thes doe concurre also Theodotus a most auncient Poet, Artaba­nus and Philon, Gentiles. Aristaeus in like maner aboute Aristotles time, wrote a Aristaeus. li de Iob. booke of Iob.

Of Moyses and his actes, not onelie 7. Of Moyses. Exo. 2. 3. 4. 5. &c. the fornamed, (especiallie Artabanus in his booke of the Iewes) doe make men­tion at large; but manie other also, as na­melie Eupolemus, out of whom Polyhi­stor reciteth verie longe narrations of the wonderful and stupēdious thinges donne by Moyses in Egipt, for which he sayeth, that in his time, he was worshipped as a God in that countrie, and called by many, Mercurius. And that the Ethiopians lear­ned [Page 104] circuncisiō of him, which afterward alwayes they retained, and so doe vntill this day. And as for his miracles donne in Egypt; his leading the people thence by the reade sea; his liuing with them fortie yeares in the desert; the heathen writers agree in al things, with the scriptures, sa­uing onely that they recōpt diuers things to the praise of Moyses, which he hath not writen of him self, adding also his description, to witt, that he was a longe taule man, with a yeolowe bearde, and The dis­cription of Moyses per­son out of heathen vvriters. longe heare. Wherwith also accordeth Numenius Pythagoricus, touching the actes of Moyses, whose life he sayeth, that he had reade in the auncientest re­cordes, that were to be had.

But the fornamed Eupolemus, goeth yet 8. The storie of Iosue, the Iudges, and the kinges. forwarde, & pursueth the storie of Iosue, of the Iudges, of Saul, Dauid, & of Salo­mō, euē vnto the building of the temple, which he describeth at large, with the particuler, letters writē about thatmatter, the king of Tyrus, which Iosephus sayeth Iosep. lib. 8. de antiq. cap. 2. were in his dayes kepte in the recordes of the Tyrīās. And with Eupolemꝰ, agree Polyhister & Hecataeus Abderita, that liued & serued ī warre with king Alexāder the great, and they make mention amongest other thīges, of the inestimable riches of Salomō, and of the treasures which he did The trea­sures hiddē in the se­pulcher of Dauid. hyde and burie, (according to the fascion of that tyme) in the sepulcher of his fa­ther Dauid: which to be no fable, (though not mentioned by the scripture,) Iosephꝰ [Page 105] well proueth, for that Hircanus the highe Priest and kinge of Iurie, being besieged Ioseph. l. 13 de antiq. cap. 16. in Ierusalem by Antiochus, surnamed Pius, not manie yeares before Christs na­tiuitie; to redeeme hym self and the cittie, and to pay for his peace, The same thing at­tempted Herode in his time, as Iosephus saith. l. 18. antiq. opened the said sepulcher of Dauid, and fecht out of one parte therof, three thousand Talentes in redy monie, which amounte to six hun­dred thousand powndes Englishe, if we accompt the talentes, but at the least size, of talentum Haebraicum.

And as for the thinges which ensued after Salomon, as the diuision of the tribes 9. The things that ensued after Salo­mons dayes. among them selues, and their diuers war­res, afflictions, and transmigrations into other cōtries; manie heathen writers doe mention and recorde them, and among other, Herodotus and Diodorus Sieulus. And the fornamed Alexander Polyhistor, talking of the captiuitie of Babylon, sayeth, that Ieremie a Prophet, tolde Ioa­chim Iere. 37. 4. Reg. 4 his kinge, what would befall hym, and that Nabuchodonosor hearinge ther­of, was moued therby to besiege Ierusalē.

Of the flight of Senacharib, from the Os Sena­cherib. siege of Ierusalem, & how he was killed at his returne home, by his owne childrē in the temple, according to the prophetie Esa. 31. & 33. & 36. of Esay, and storie of the booke of kinges, for that he had blasphemed the Lord God of Israel, Herodotus witnesseth, and that 4. Reg. 9. after his death he had a Statua or image of metal erected in his memorie, with this Hero. l. 2. inscription in greeke. He that beboldeth me, [Page 106] lett hym learne to be godlie. Conferre Xeno­phon also in his seuenth booke de Cyro­paedia, and you shall see hym agree with Daniel in his narrations of Babylon. Dan. 16.

And finallie, I will conclude with Io­sephus the learned Iewe, that wrote ime­diatelie after Christs ascension and pro­testeth, that the publique writinges of the Syriaus, Chaldaeans, Phenicians, and Ioseph. l. 1. de Antiq. Iudaica. innumerable hystories of the Graecians, are sufficiēt to testifie the antiquitie, truth, authoritie, and certaintie of holie scriptu­res, if there were no other proofe in the world besides.

The cōclusion of the chapter, vvith th' applicatiō. Sect. 4.

THus farre haue I treatede of the wayes and meanes, which haue bene left to the world from the beginninge, therby to know & vnderstande their Ma­ker. In treating which point I haue stayed my self the longer, for that it is the groūd & foundatiō of all that is or maye be said hereafter. It is the first, & final, & chiefest principle of all our eternal saluation or damnatiō, and of the total weale or woe, that must befail vs & possesse vs for euer.

Which grounde and veritie, if it be so certaine and euident as before hath bene shewed by all reason and proofe both diuine and humane; and that the matter be so testified and proclamed vnto vs, by No excuse of the ig­norance of God. all the creatures of heauen and earth, and by the mouth and writing of our Crea­tor hymself, as no ignorance or blindnes [Page 107] can excuse the same; no slouthfulnes dis­semble it, no wickednes denie it: what re­maineth then, but to consider with our selues, what seruice this God requireth at our hádes? what gratitude, what duetie, what honour for our creation? to th' ēde, that as we haue proued hym a most boun­tiful Creator, so we may fynde hym a propitious iudge, & munificent rewarder. For it is not probable, that his diuine ma­iestie which hath appointed euerie other creature to some action for his owne glorie, (as hathe bene declared at large before;) should leaue mankinde onelie, whiche is the worthiest of all the rest, without obligation to his seruice.

In which one pointe not withstan­ding, though neuer so cleare, (such is the The errour of the olde Philoso­phers. Rom. 1. & 2. fondnesse of our corrupt nature without gods holie grace;) fayled thos auncient wise men of the world, of whom S. Paul speaketh so much in his epistle to the Ro­mans, taking compassion of their case, and callinge them fooles and all their great learnīge & philosophie meere fondnesse; for that, vvheras (by the meanes before mentioned) they came to knovv God; they did Rom. 1. not seeke to glorifie hym, as appertained vnto God, not yet did render hym due thankes, but va­nished avvaye in their cogitations; &c. That is, they tooke no profitt by this knowledge of theirs, but applied their cogitations vpon the vanities of this worlde, more then vpon the honour and seruice of this Rom. 1. v. 28. their God. For whiche cause, S. Paul ad­ioyneth [Page 108] presentelie in the same place, that forso much as they did thus, & did not shew foorthe by their lyfe and workes, that they had the knowledge of God in deede: God deliuered them ouer to a re­probate sense, and suffered them to fall in­to horrible synnes, which S. Paul doth na­me and detest in all that chapter; and fi­nallie concludeth, that their euerlasting perdition ensued principallie vpon this one pointe; that wheras, they knevv the iu­stice of God, (by all the wayes and argumē ­tesRom. 1. E v. 32.that before haue bene declared:) yet would they not vnderstand (saith he) that death was due to all such, which liued in wickednes, as they did.

And the same Apostle, vpon considera­tion A general sentēce pro­nounced by S. Paul. of thes matters, wherin he standeth long for th' importance therof, pronoun­ceth in sine this general sentence, with great asseueration and vehemencie of spi­rit: that the vvrath of God is reucaled from heauē Rom. I. V. 18. vpon al impietie and iniustice of thos men, vvho holde the knovvledge of God in vnrighteousnes. that is, who beig indued with the know­ledge of God, doe liue notwithstanding vnrighteouslie, or, (as he saidbefore) doe consume their dayes in vanitie, not makīg accompt of the seruice, which they doe owe to that God for their Creation and other benefites. Which thinge, if S. Paul might trulie saye vnto these Gentiles be­fore his tyme, who had onelie natural knowledge and vnderstanding of God; that is, so much as by his creatures was to [Page 109] be gathered: what may or shalbe said vnto Th' appli­cation to our selues. vs, who haue not onelie that light of na­ture which they had; but also the wry­tinges ànd lawe of God hymself, commu­nicated speciallie vnto the Iewes; and aboue that also, haue hearde the voyce of his onelie sonne vpon earth, and haue re­ceiued the doctrine of his most holie ghos­pel, and yet doe liue as negligentelie (ma­nie of vs) as did the verie heathens, tou­ching good life and vertue?

Surelie, in this case, I must denounce against my self, that if it be true, (as it can not be false,) which this blessed Apostle affirmeth here of thes heathen philoso­phers, that by that litle knowledge they had of God, they vvere made inexcusable: then Rom. 1. v. 20. by the most iust & certaine rule of Christ, layed downe in S. Luke,cui multum datum est, multum quaretur ab eo, that of euerie man Luc. 12. which hath receiued much, a greater ac­compte shalbe taken for the same:’ we are forced to inferre, that our accompt shalbe greater, and our selues much more inex­cusable before his diuine maiestie, thē the verie Gentiles and heathens are; if after all our knowledge and manifest vnder­standing of his Godhead and iustice, vve vanishe avvay in our cogitatiōs, as they did, & as most parte of the world at this day are sene to doe; that is, if we applie our cogi­tatiōs & cares, aboute the vaine affaires of this tēporal life and trāsitorie cōmodities, which we should bestowe vpō the seruice and honour of this our Lord and Creator.

OF THE FINAL ENDE AND CAVSE WHIE MAN WAS CREATED BY GOD and placed in this world. And of th' obligation he hath therby, to at­tende to th' affaire for vvhich he came hyther. CHAPT. III.

BY the Chapter precedent, I no­thing doubt (gé­tle reader,) but, if thou haue sene and perused the same, thou remai­nest sufficientlie informed of thy Creator. Now followeth it by order of good conse­quence, that we cōsider with some atten­tion, (for that it standeth vs much vpon,) A necessa­rie Consi­deration. what intent & purpose God had in crea­ting vs and this world for our sakes, and in placing vs therin as Lords of the same? By the former considerations we haue learned, that as among other creatures, [Page 111] nothing made it self; so nothig was made for it self, nor to serue it self. The heauens (we see) doe serue th' ayer, th' ayer ser­ueth th' earth, th' earth serueth beastes, the beastes serue man; and then is the questió, whom mā was made to serue? For in hym also, holdeth the former reason, that seig he was not made by hym self: it is not likelie that he was made to serue hym selfe

If we consult with the scripture herein; we finde a general sentence layed downe without exception; Vniuersa propter se­metipsum Prou. 16. operatus est Dominus, our Lorde hath made all thinges for hym self. And if all; the man likewise (no doubte,) who is Man made to serue God. not the least of the rest which he hath made. And hereby it cometh to passe, that man can not be said to be free, or at his owne appointement or disposition in this world, but obliged to perfourme that thing, for which he was sent into this habitation. Which pointe holie Iob declareth plainelie, in a certaine inuec­tiue that he maketh against such men as were careles and negligent in conside­ration of this affaire. A vaine man (sayeth Iob. 11. he) is lifted vp in pride, and thinketh hym self to be borne as free, as the colt of a vvilde asse. That is, he thinketh hym self bound to nothīg, subiect to nothīg, accōptable for nothing that he doth in this life: but onlie borne free, to passe his time ī disporte & pleasure, as a wilde colte in a desert, that hath no Master to tame hym. Whiche in other [Page 112] words, the wise mā vttereth thus: He estre­meth Sap. 15. this life of ours, for aplaigame, & ther­fore careth not how he liueth or wherin he spéd & passe-ouer the tyme. And this of the man, whó the scripture calleth Vaine.

But now for the sooer, wise, and dis­crete, of whom it is writen, the vvay of life is vpon the learned, to th' ende they may decline Pro. 15. from the lovvest hell: they are farre from so greate follie, as to imagine that no ac­compt shall be demanded of our being in this world; for that they haue reade, that God shall bring into iudgement, vvhat so euer is Eccle. 11. & 12. donne, for euerie fault that is commytted. And the Christian man knoweth further by the mouth and asseueration of his Saue our Mat. 12. and Redeemour, that he shall be accomp­tant for euerie idle worde that he misvt­tereth; and finalie, there is no man that is ether of reason, or conuersant in the wri­tinges Accompt to be rēde­red. and testament of his Creator, but remembreth well, that among all other irritations, wherby the wicked man is said to prouoke Gods patience to indig­nation, none is more often repeated or more greeuouslie taken, then, that he said Psal. 9. 43 & 141. in his harte, God vvill as ke no accompt.

With thes men then alone, shall be my speeche in this present chapter, who haue a desire to discharge well this accompte. For attayning wherof (trulie,) I can gyue them no better counsaile, instruction, or aduise, then to doe in this case, as a good marchant-factour is wonte to doe, when he arriueth in forraine Countries, or as a [Page 113] souldiar or Capitaine sent by his prince to some greate exploite, is accustomed, when he cometh to the place appointed: that is, to weigh and consider deepolie, for what cause he came thither? whie he Profitable [...] and consi­derations. was sent? to what ende? what to attem­pte? what to prosecute? what to per­fourme? what shalbe expected and requi­red at his handes, (vpon his returne,) by hym that sent hym thyther? For thes co­gitations (no doubt) shall stirre hym vp to attende to that, for which he came, & not to imploy his tyme in impertinent af­faires. The lyke would I counsail a Chri­stian to putt in vre, concerning the case proposed, and to demande of hymself, be­twene God and his conscience, why, and wherfore, and to what endo, he was created & sent hythe: into this worlde? what to doe? wherin to bestowe his dayes? &c.

And then shal he fynde, that for no other cause, matter, or ende, but onlie to serue God in this life, and by that seruice, to gaine heauen and saluation in the lyfe to come. This was the condition of our Gen. 14: Deut. creation, as Moyses well expresseth; and this was the consideration of our redee­ming, fortolde by Zacharie, before we were yet redeemed; that vve being deliuered Luc. 1. foorth of the handes of our enimies, should serue God, inholines and righteousnes, all the dayes of our liues.

Of this consideration doe ensue two The. 1. con­sequence upon due consideration, of our ende. consequentes to be obserued. Whereof [Page 114] the first is, that seinge our ende and final cause of being in this worlde, is to serue God, and therby to worke our owne sal­uation: whatsoeuer thinge we doe, or be­stowe our tyme in, which ether is contra­rie or impertinent, or not profitable to this ende, (though it were to gaine king­domes,) it is vanitie and lost labour, that will turne vs in tyme to griefe and repē ­tance, (if we change not our course,) for that it is not the matter for which we came īto this life, nor wherof we shalbe demanded an accompt, except it be to re­ceyue iudgement and punishement for the same.

Secondlie it followeth of the same consideration, that seing our onlīe busines The 2. consequēce. and affaire in this worlde, is to serue our Maker, and saue our owne soules; and, that all other earthelie creatures are put here to serue our vses to that onlie ende: we should for our partes be indifferent to all thes creatures, as to riches or po­uertie; to health or sicknes; to honour or cōtempte; to lytle learning or much lear­ning: and we should desire onlie so much or litle of either of them as were best for vs to th' attainement of our said ende and Butte pretended; that is, to tho seruice of God & the weale of our soules. For who so euer desireth, seekthe, loueth, or vseth thes creatures, more thē for this: rūnneth from his ende for which he came hyther.

By this then, may a careful Christian Hovv eche [...] may take a scā ­teling of his estate. take some scanteling of his owne estate [Page 115] with God, and make a cōiecture whether he be in the right waye, or no. For if he attende onlie or principallie to this ende, for which he was set hyther; if his cares, cogitations, studdies, endeuours, labours, talke, conuersation, and other his actiōs, doe runne vpon this matter, and that he careth no more for other creatures, as honours, riches, learnig, and the lyke, thē A right course. they are necessarie vnto hym for this ende that he pretēdeth: If his dayes & life be spent in this studdie of the seruice of God, and procuring his owne saluatiō in carefulnes, feare, and trembling, as th' A­postle aduiseth hym: then is he (doub­teles) Philip. 2. a most happie and blessed man, and shall at length attaine to the kingedome which he expecteth.

But if hē finde hym self in a contrarie A vvrong and dange­rous course. case and course; that is, not to attende in deede to this matter for which onlie he was sent hyther; nor to haue in his hart & studie this seruice of God and gayning heauen, but rather some other vanitie of the world, as promotion, wealth, plea­sure, sumptuous apparrel, gorgeous buil­dinges, beautie, fauour of princes, or anie other thing els, that apparteineth not vnto this ende: if he spend his tyme about thes trifles, hauing his cares and cogita­tions, his talke and delight, more in thes thinges, then about th' other greate busi­nes of gayning Gods eternal kingdome, for which he was made and placed in this wold: Then is he (I assure hym) in a peri [Page 116] lous waye, leading directelie to perditió, except he alter and change his course. For, most certaine it is, that who so euer shal not attende vnto the seruice he came for; shal neuer attaine therewarde assig­ned and promissed to that seruice.

And for that, the most parte of all this worlde (not onlie of infidels but also The reason vvhie so fevv are saued. Christiās,) doe rūne amisse in this pointe, and doe not take care of that affaire and busines, for which alone they were crea­ted and placed heere: hence it is, that Christe and his holie Sainctes, bothe be­fore and after his appearance in fleshe, Mat. 7. 20 & 22. Lut. 13. haue spoken so hardlie and seuerelie, of the verie simal number that shalbe saued (euen among Christians,) and haue vtte­red certaine speeches, which seeme verie rigourous to fleshe and blood, (& to such as are most touched therin) scarse credi­bile, albeit they must be fulfilled. As among other thinges, that a louer of this Iacob. 4. Mat. 19. Marc. 10. worlde can not be saued; that riche men doe enter as hardlie into heauen, as a Ca­mel through a Needles eye, and the like; The reason of which maner of speeches doth stande in this, that a riche man or worldling, attending with all his indus­trie to heape riches (as the fashion is,) can not attende, (nor euer doth,) to that for which he came into this world, and consequentelie, can neuer attaine heauen, except God worke a miracle, and therby doe cause hym to spende oute his riches to the benefyte of his soule, (as some [Page 117] tymes he doth,) and so doe lessen the Ca­mel in suche sorte, as he may passe the Needles eye. Wherof we haue a verie ra­re Luc. 19. example in the Gospel, of Zachaeus, who beinge a riche man did presentelie vpō th' entering of Christ into his house, (and muche more as appeareth into his harte,) resolue hym self, to change his for­mer A perfect example of a good con­uersion. course touchinge riches, and at one blowe to begynne withall, gaue awaye halfe of all he possessed to the poore; and for the rest, made proclamation, that who soeuer had receaued anie wrong at his handes, (as comonlie manie doe by them that are riche,) he should come and receyue fower tymes so much amendes. By which almes and restitution, he deliuered hym self from the Camels gibbe or bunch on his backe, that letted his passage through the Needles eye. And this extraor dinarie fauour and grace he receyued, by the fortunate presence of his most blessed and bountiful Guest, who had signified before in an other place, that hym self was able, so to drawe the Camel, as he should passe the Needles eye; for that thin­ges impossible to man, were possible to Mat. 19. Marc. 10. God.

But to leaue this, and to goe forwarde in our former purpose; no mauaile it is, if in the world abrode, so fewe be saued, seing that of thousandes, skarse one doth accompt of that busines, whiche of all other, is the chiefe and principall. Consider you the multitude of all sorte of [Page 118] people vpon earthe, and see what their trafike and negotiation is? see whether they treate this affaire or no? see wherin The vvrōg course of the vvorld. their care, and studie, and cogitation con­sisteth? How manie thousandes finde you in Christiandome, who spende not one houre of fower and twentie, nor one halfe daye of fortie, in the seruice of God, or busines of their soule? how infinite haue you, that breake their braines aboute worldlie cōmodities, and how few that are troubled with this other cogitation? how manie finde tyme to eate, drinke, sleepe, disporte, decke and trim ne them selues to the vew of others; and yet haue no tyme to bestowe in this greatest busi­nes of all other busines? how manie passe ouer whole dayes, weekes, monethes, and yeares, (and finallie their whole liues,) in haukīg hūting, & other pastimes, without regarde of this importāt affaire? how ma­nie miserable women haue you in the world, that spend more dayes in one yeare in pricking vp their apparell and ador­ning their carcasse, then they doe houres i prayer for the space of all their life? And what (alas) shall become of this people in th' ende? what will they doe or saye at the daye of accompte? what excuse will they alleage? what waye will they turne them? A Cōpari­son expres­sing thera­nitie of our occupatiōs.

If the marchand-factour, which I men­tioned before, after manie years spent in forraine countries vpon his Masters ex­spences, should returne at length, & gyue [Page 119] vp his accomptes, of so much tyme and monie spent in singinge; so much in daun­singe; so muche in fencinge; so much in Courtig: who would not laugh at so fond a recōning? but being further demaūded of his master, what tyme he had bestowed vpon the marchandise and affaires for which he was sent; if the man should an­swer, that he had not leasure to thinke vpon that thing for the great occupation whiche he had in th' other: who would not esteeme hym worthie of all punishe­ment and confusiō? And much more shame and confusion (no doubt,) shall they sus­taine at the last dreadfull day, in the face and presence of God and all his. Angels, Math. 16. who being sent into this world to traf­fique so riche a marchādise as is the king­dome of heauen; haue neglected the same, and haue bestowed their studdies, vpō the moste vaine tryfles and follies of this world, without cogitation or care of th' other.

O ye children of Adam, (saith the spi­rit Psal. 4. Hiere. 2. of God) whie loue you so vanitie, and seeke after lies? Whie leaue you the foū ­taine, and seeke after Cesternes? If a goldē Game of inestimable value, should be pro­posed to suche as would rūne and could winne the same; and when the course or A Compa­rison. rase were begunne, if some should steppe asyde and follow flies or fethers that passed in th' ayer, without regarde of the price & Goule proposed: who would not maruaile and take pittie of their follie? [Page 120] Euen so is it with men of this world, if we belieue S. Paul, who affirmeth, that 8. Cor. 9. we are all placed together in a Course or rase, and that heauen is propounded vnto vs for the Game or Price: But euerie man (saith he) arriueth not thyther; and why? for that most men doe steppe a syde and leaue the marcke. Most men doe runne awrie, and doe followe fethers vp and downe in th' ayer; most men doe pursue vanities, and doe wearie them selues oute in the pursute therof, vntill they can nether runne, nor goe, nor moue their limmes anie further; and then for the most parte it is to late to amende their follie. Will you heare the lamentations of suche vnfortunate men? These are their owne wordes recorded by scripture. ‘We are wearied out in the waye of iniquitie and perdition; and the waye Sap. 5. The com­plainte of vvorldlīgs, in th' ende of their life. of God we haue not knowen. What pro­fitt haue we receyued of all our pompe & pride, and vaunting riches? what good haue they donne vs? They are now past awaye, as a shadoe, and as a messenger that rideth in post, and we are consumed in our owne iniquities.’

This is the lamentable complainte of such men, as ranne awrie and followed a wronge course in their actions of this life. Thes are they, who pursued riches, honour, pompe, and like vanities, and for­gate the busines for which they were sent. Thes are they, who were esteemed happie men in this world, and thought to [Page 121] runne a most fortunat course, in that they heaped much riches together; aduaunced them selues and their families to greate The fondé iudgemēt off the vvorld. dignities; became gorgeous, & glorious, and dreadful to others; and finallie, ob­tained what so euer their lust and concu­piscence desyred. This made them seeme blessed to earthelie cogitations, and the waye wherin they ráne, to be most pros­perous and happie. And I make no doubt, (by experience of thes our tymes) but they had admirours and enuiours in great. abundance, who burned in desire to ob­taine the same course. And yet when I heare their complainte in this place, and their owne confession wherin they saye expresselie, vve senseles men did erre from the Sap. 5. vvay of truth: when I consider also th' ad­dition of scripture, Taliadixerunt in inferno, ‘they spake thes thinges when they were in hell:’I can not but esteeme their course for most miserable, and condemne wholy the iudgement of flesh in this affaire.

Wherfore (my brother) if thou be wise, yelde not to this decept of worldlie lip­pes and tongues, that vse to blesse & sanc­tific such as are in most daunger and nea­rest Psal. 10 to perdition. Leane rather to the sin­cere councel of S. Paul, who willeth the Gal 6. to examine vprightlie thy owne workes and wayes, and so to iudge of thie selfe without decepte. If thou walke the waye of Babylon, most certaine it is, that thou shalt neuer arriue at the gates of Hierusa­lem, except thou chaunge thie course. O [Page 122] (my brother) what a gryese will it be vnto thee, when after longe labour and much toyle, thou shalt finde thie self to haue gone a wrie? if a man had trauailed A compa­ryson ex­pressing our gryese in th' ende, for our running a vvronge course. but one whole daye, and therby made wearie, should vnderstande at night, that all his labour were lost, & that his whole iourney was out of the waye; it would be a marueloꝰ afflictiō vnto hym (no doubt,) albeit no other incōueniēce were therin, but onlie the losse of that dayes trauaile, which might be recouered and recompen­ced in the next. But if besides this, his bu­sines were great; if it laye vpon his life to be at the place whether he goeth, at a certaine hower; if the losse of his waye were irrecouerable; if the punishment of his errour, must be death and confusion; and hym self were so wearie that he could stirre no one foote further: imagine then, what a gryeuous message this would be vnto hym, to heare one say: Sir; you are amisse, and haue ridden wholie besides your way?

So then wil it be vnto the, (my soule,) at the daye of death and separation The mise­rie of a soule that hath gone avvrie at the last day. from my bodie, if in this life, thou attende not to thy saluation for which thou were created, but shalt passe ouer thy dayes in followinge of vanities. Thou shalt finde thy self a straye at th' ende of thy iour­nei; thou shalt finde thy self wearie, and inforced to saye withe those miserable damned spirites, I haue vvalked hard and crag­gie Sap. 5. vvayes, for that in deede the waye of [Page 123] wickednes is full of thornes and stones, though in shew it be couered with faire grasse & manie flowers. Thou shalt finde at that daye, that thou hast lost thy labour, lost thy tyme, lost all opportunitie of thy owne commoditie. Thou shalt finde thie errour to be irrecouerable, thie daū ­ger vnauoydable, thie punishement insup­portable, thie repentance vnprofitable, and thie griefe, and sorrow, and calami­tie inconsolable.

Oh, he that could beholde and feele th' inwarde cogitations of a worldlie mans hart at that instant, after all his ho­nours and pleasures were past; no doubt, but he should finde hym of an other iud­gement and opinion in thinges, then he was in the ruffe and heate of his ioylitie. He doth well perceyue then, the fondnes of those triffles which he followed in this life, albeit it were to make hym self a Monarche. If a man did know the cogi­tations Alexāders death. that Alexander the Great had, when of poison he came to die, after all his victories and incredible prosperitie; if we knew the thoughtes of Iuliꝰ Caesar at Iul. Caesar death. the day of his murder in the Senate house, after the conquest of all his enimies, and subiection of the whole world, to his owne onlie obediēce: we should well per­ceiue, that they tooke litle pleasure in the wayes they had walked, not withstan­ding they were esteemed most prosperous and happie, by men of this world. Tvvo rare examples.

Iosephus the Iewe, recompteth two [Page 124] very rare examples of humane felicitie, in Herode the first, and Agrippa his Cosine: Ioseph. l. 14 15. & 18 de antiq. Iu­daica. & de bell. Iud. l. 2 wherof th' one by Antonie the Triumuir, and th' other by Caligula th' Emperour, (both of them being otherwise but pri­uate gentilmen, and in great pouertie and miserie when they fled to Rome,) were exalted vpon the suddaine, to vnexpected great fortune, and made riche Monarches and glorious Potentates. They were in­dued (at seueral tymes) with the king­dome and crowne of Iurie, & that in such ample sorte, as neuer any of that Nation after them had the like. For which cause they are called in the Hebrue storie, for distinctions sake, Herode the Great, and Agrippa the Great. They ruled and com­maunded all in their dayes: they wanted nether siluer nor gold, nor pleasures, nor pastimes, nor friendes, nor flatterers. And besides all thes gyftes of fortune, they abounded also in ornamentes and excel­lencie of bodie and witte. And all this was increased and made the more admira­ble by reason of their For en­uie onlie of Agrippa his fortune, Herodias did ruine her self and her hus­band, as Io­seph saith. l. 18. antiq. cap. 8. 9. 15. Her hus­band vvas Herod An tipas, that slevv. S. Iohn Bap­tiste and vvas sonne to Herode the first. Luc. 3. Mat. 14. base & low estate before, in respect wherof, their present fortune was esteemed for a perfect pa­terne of most absolute felicitie.

This they enioyed for a certaine space, and to assure thē selues of the continuāce; they bent all their cares, cogitations, and studdies, to please the humours of the Roman Emperours, as their Gods and au­thours of all their prosperitie and felici­tie vpō earth. In respect of whose fauours [Page 125] (as Iosephus noteth,) they cared litle to violate their owne religiō of the Iewes, or anie thing els that was most Sacred. And this (forsooth) was esteemed of ma­nie, a most wise, politique, prosperous, and happie course. But what was th' ende and consummation of this their rase?

First, Herode fell sicke of such an incu­rable Herodes death. Iosep. l. 15. antiq. and lothesome desease, and was tormented in the same with so manie ter­rours, and horrible This He­rod vvas called As­colonita, & slevv th' in­fantes in Bethlem. Matth 2. accusations of his conscience; as he pronounced hym self to be the most miserable afflicted creature, that euer liued; and so calling one daye for a knife to pare an aple, would nedes ha­ue mundered hym self with the same, if his arme had not bene stayed by them that stoode by. And for Agrippa, Iosephus re­porteth, how that vpon a certaine daye which he kept festiual, in Caesarea, for The death of Agrip­pa. Iosep. l. 19. cap. 7. the honour of Claudius the Roman Em­perour; when he was in his most extreme pompe and ioylitie, in the middest of all his Peeres, Nobles and Damosels, cōming foorth at an hower appointed, (all glit­tering in golde & siluer,) to make an ora­tion vnto the people: his voice, gesture, countenāce, and apparel so pleased; as the said people began to crie (being sollici­ted ther vnto by some flaterours,) that it vvas the voyce of God, and not of man; wherin Agrippa taking pleasure and delectation; S. Luke saith, he vvas stroké by Gods Angel. Act. 12. And cōsider hovv Iose­ph'agreeth vvith that Narration. was stoocken presentlie from heauen, with a moste horrible putrifaction of all his bodie, wherof he died, repeating [Page 126] onlie to his friendes thes wordes, in the middest of his tormētes. Behold ye mee, that doe sente to you a God, hovv miserablie I am Infor­ced Euseb. l. 2. hist. cap. 9. to departe from you all.

Now then would I demaunde of thes two so fortunate men, who laying a side all care of God and religion, did follow the prefermentes of this world so freshe­lie, and obtained the same so luckelie: how they liked of this their course and rase in th' ende? Trulie, I doubt not, but if they were here to answer for them selues; they would assure vs, that one hower be­stowed in the seruice of God, and of their saluation; would more haue comforted them at that last instant, then all their la­bours & toiles which they tooke in their liues, for pleasing of Emperours, and ga­thering the grace and good likinge of mortal men.

Vse then (ô Christian,) vse this expe­rience Sincere and profitable counsaile. to thy commoditie: vse it to thy instructiō; vse it to thy forwarning. That which they are now, thou shalt be short­lie; and of all follies it is the greatest, not to profite or flee daungers by th' exāple of others. The difference betwene a wise mā and a foole, is, that th' one prouideth for a mischiefe while tyme serueth, & th' other would doe, whē it is to late. If thou migh­test feele now, the state and case wherin thy poore hart shalbe at the last daye, for neglecting the thing that of all other it should haue studdied & thought vpō most: thou wouldest take frō thy meate, & sleepe, [Page 127] and other necessaries, to repaire that is past. Hytherto thou hast time to refourme thy course, if thou please, which is no small benefite, if all were knowen. For in this sense (no doubt,) is it most true, which the wise man saith; that better it is Eccle. 4. to be a lyuing dogge, then a dead Lyō. For that, while the daye tyme of this life indu­reth; all thinges amisse may easelie be amē ­ded. But the dreadful night of death will Ioh. 9. ouertake thee shortlie, & then shall there be no more space of reformation.

Oh that men would be wise and forsee Deut. 32. thinges to come, sayeth one prophet. The greatest wisdome ī the world (deare bro­ther,) is to looke and attēde to our owne saluation. For as the scripture sayeth most trulie; he is a vviseman in deede, that is vvise to Eccle. 37. his ovvne soule. And of this wisdome it is writen in the verie same booke, as spoken by her self. In mee is the grace of all life and Eccle. 24. truth, and in mee is the hope of all life and vertue. In moral actions and humane wisdome, we see that the first and chyefest circum­stance is, to regarde well and consider the ende. And how thē doe we omit the same, in this greate affaire of the kingdome of heauen? If our ende be heauē, what meane we so much to affect our selues to earth? if our ende be God; whie seeke we so greedilie the worldlie fauour of men? if Great follie and errous. our ende be the saluation and eternitie of our soule; why doe we follow vanities and temporalities of this life? vvhie spende Esa. 55. ye your monie, and not in breade? sayeth God [Page 128] by Esay: vvhie bestovve ye your labour i thinges that vvill not yeld you savuritie? If our inheri­tance Ephe. 1. 1. Thes. 2. 2. Pet. 1. be, that we should reigne as kinges; whie putt we our selues in suche slauerie of creatures? if our birth allow vs to feede of bread in our fathers howse; whie de­lighte we in huskes prouyded for the Luc. 15. swine?

But (alas) we may saye with the wise man in scripture. Fascinatio nugacitatis obscu­rat Sap 4. bona. ‘The bewitching of worldlie tri­fles doth obscure and hyde from vs the things that are good & behouesull for our soules: ô most daungerous inchantement.’ But what? shall this excuse vs? no trulie: Errour in cur course of life is not pardoned. Ose. 4. for the same spirite of God hath left re­corded: Populus non intelligens vapulabit. The people that vnderstādeth not shalbe bea­ten for it. And an other prophet to the same effect pronounceth. This people is not Esa. 28. vvise, and therefore he that made them, shall not pardon them, neither shall he that created them take mercie vpon them. It is writen of fooles: ventum seminabunt & turbinem metent. They shall sowe and cast their seede vpon the windes, and shall receyue for their haruest nothing els but a storme or tēpest.’ Wher­by is signified, that they shall not onlie cast away and leese their labours, but also be punished and chastened for the same.

Consider thē I beseeche the, (my deare A profita­ble fore­vvarning. brother) attētiueiie, what thou wilt doe or saye, when thie Lord shall come at the last daye and aske the an accompte of all thy labours, actiōs, and tyme spent in this [Page 129] life? when he shall require a recōning of Math. 25. his talentes lent vnto the? when he shall say, as he said to the Farmour or Steward in the Gospel. Redde rationem villicatiouis Luc. 16. tuae, gyue accompt of thie Stewardshippe and charge committed vnto the? what wilt thou saye, when he shall examine & weigh & trie thie doiges, as golde is exa­mined and tried in the fornace, that is, what ende they hade? wherto they were applied? to what glorie of God? to what profite of thie soule? what measure, and weight, and substance they beare? Balsa­sar king of Babylon, sitting at his banket merry vpon a tyme, espyed suddainlie, certaine fingares without a hande, that A rare chance that happened to Balsasar K. of Babylon. wrote in the wall ouer right against his table, thes three Hebrue wordes, MANE, THEKEL, PHARES. Which three wordes Da­niel interpreted in thre sentences to Bal­sasar, Dan. 5. it his maner. MANE; God hath num­bered thee (Balsasar) and thie kingdome. THEKEL; he hath weyghed thei the Gold­smiths balāce, & thou art founde to light. PHARES; for this cause, hath he deuided thee from thie kingdome, and hath gyuen the same to the Medes and Persians.

Oh, that thes three golden and most sig­gnificant wordes, ingrauen by th' angel vpon Balsasars wall, were regestred vpō euerie dore and poste in Christiādome, or rather imprinted in the harte of eche Christian; especiallie the two first, that importe the numbering and weighing of all our actions, and that, in the weightes [Page 130] and ballance of the Goldsmithe, where euerie graine is espied that wanteth. And If God exa­mine strait­lie th' actiōs of infidells, much more of Christiās is they be careles. if Balsasars actions, that was a Gentile, were to be examined in so nise and deli­cate a payre of balance, for their triall; & if he had so seuere a sentence pronounced vpon hym, that he should be deuided from life and kingdome, (as he was the same night followinge) Quia inuentus est minus habens, for that he was founde to haue Dan. 5. lesse weight in hym, then he should haue: what shall we thinke of our selfes that are Christians, of whom it is writē aboue all others; I vvill search the sinnes of Ierusalem Sopho. 1. vvith a candle? What shall we expect, that haue not onlie lesse weight thē we should haue, but no weight at all, in the most of our actions? what may such men (I saye) expecte, but only that most terrible threat of diuision made vnto Balsasar, (or rather A dread­ful diuision. worse if worse may be,) that is, to be de­uided from God and his Angels; from participation with our Saueour; from cō ­munion of Sainctes; from hope of our in­heritance; from our portion celestial, and life euerlastinge? according to th' expresse declaration, made hereof by Christ hym self in thes wordes, to the negligent ser­uant: The Lord of such a seruant, shall com' at a Math. 24. daye vvhen he hopeth not, and at an houre that he knovveth not; and shal deuide hym ovvt, and as­signe his parte vvith hypocritos, vvher shalbe vveeping and gnashing of teeth.

Wherfore (deare brother) to conclude The cōclu­sion. this chapter, I can saye nothing more in [Page 131] this dangerous case, wherin the world so runneth awrie, but onlie exhorte thee (as Rom. 12. th' apostle doth,) not to conforme thy self to the common errour that leadeth to per­dition. Fall at length to some reconning and accompt with thy life, and see where thou standest, and whether thou goest. If hytherto thou haue wandred and gone a straye: be sory for the tyme lost, but passe no further. If hytherto thou haue not cō ­sidered the weightines of this affaire: serue thy selfe of this admonition, and re­member that it is writen, that a wise man Pro. 5. profiteth by euerie occasion. Esteeme thy resolution in this one pointe, the chiefest menage that euer shall passe through thy handes in this world, albeit thou were 2 Monarche and Ruler of ten worldes to­gether. And finallie, I will ende with the verie same wordes, wherwith the wise man concludeth his whole booke. Deum Eccle. 12. time, & mandataeius obserua; hoc est enim omnis homo. ‘Feare God, and obserue his com­maundements, for this is euerie man.’That is; in this doth all and euerie man consist: his ende, his beginning, his life, and cause of being: that he feare God, and directe his actions to th' obseruance of his com­maundementes; for that without this, he is no man, in effect, seing that he loo­seth all benefite, both of his name, nature, redemption, and creation.

THAT THE SERVICE WHICH GOD REQVI­RETH OF MAN IN this present life, is religion. VVith the particuler confirmations of Chris­tian religion, aboue all other in the vvorld. CHAPT. IIII.

HAVINGE prouedī the former chapi­ters, that there is a God, which crea­ted man; and that man in respecte hereof, & of other benefites recey­ued, is bounde to honour and serue the same God: the question may be made in this place, what seruice this is that God requireth, and wherin it doth con­sist? Whereunto th' answere is brief and Of religion. easie, that it is Religiō; which is a vertue, See S. Tho. 2. 22. quest. 81. 82. 83. that cōteyneth properlie, the worshippe and seruice that we owe vnto God: euen [Page 133] as Pietie is a vertue, conteyning the dutie Pietie. that children doe owe vnto their paren­tes: and Obseruance an other vertue, that Obseruāce. comprehēdeth the regarde, that schollers and seruantes beare vnto their masters. In respect of which comparison and likenes betwene thes vertues, God faith by a cer­taine Malac. 1. Prophet. The fonne honoureth his father, & the seruát his master: if thē I be a father, vvher is my honour? if I be a Master, vvher is my feare?

The actes of Religiō are diuers and dif­ferent; The actis and operations of Re­ligion. some internal, as deuotion and prayer; some other external, as adoration, worshippe, sacrifice, oblations, vowes, & such like, that are declarations and prote­stations of th' internal. It extendeth it self also, to stirre vp and putt in vre the actes and operations of other vertues for the seruice of God; in which sense S. Iames nameth it Pare and unspotted religion, to Iacob. 1. visite Orphanes & VVidovves in their tribu­lation, and to keepe our selues vndefiled from the vvickednes of this vvorld. Finallie, how so euer some heathens did vse this worde Religion to some other signi­fications: yet, (as S. Augustine well no­teth,) August. lib. 10. de ciuit. cap. 1. th' vse therof among the faytheful, hath alwayes bene, to signifie therby the worshippe, honour, and seruice that is due vnto God: so that if in one worde you Hovv much it impor­teth to be religions. will haue it declared, what God requi­reth of man in this life: it may be rightelie said, that all standeth in this, that he be Religious.

Hereof it proceeded, that what so euer [Page 134] sorte or sect of people in the world, pro­fessed reuerence, honour, or worshippe to God, or to Gods, or to any diuine power, essence, or Nature what soeuer; (were they Iewes, heathens, Gentiles, Christiās, Turkes, Moores, Heretiques, or other:) they did alwayes call their said professiō, by the name of their Religion. In which sense also and signification of the worde, I am to treate at this tyme of Christian religion, that is, of the substance, forme, maner, and waye reueiled by Christ and his Apostles vnto vs, of persourning our duetie and true seruice towardes God. Which seruice, is the first pointe necessa­rie to be resolued vpon, by hym that seeketh his saluatiō, as in the Chapter that goeth before hath bene declared. And The neces­sitie of Chri stiā religiō. for obteyning this seruice & true know­ledge therof, no meane vpō earth is left vnto man, but onlie by the light and in­struction of Christian religion, according to the protestation of S. Peter to the go­uernours of the Iewes, whē he sayed. Ther is no other name vnder beauen gyuen vnto men Act. 4. vvherby to be saued, but only this of Christ and of his religion.

If you obiecte against me, that in for­mer tymes before Christes natiuitie, as vnder the law of Moyses for two thou­sand Hovv men vvere sa­ued in olde time vvith­out Chri­stiā religiō. years together, there were many Sainctes that without Christian religion serued God vprightelie, as the Prophetes and other holie people; and before them againe, in the law of Nature, whē nether [Page 135] Christiā nor Iuishe religion was yet heard of, for more then other two thousand years, there wanted not diuers that plea­sed God and serued hym trulie, as Enoche, Noe, Iob, Abraham, Iacob, and others: I answer, that albeit thes men (expeciallie the former, that liued vnder the law of nature;) had not so particuler & expresse knowledge of Christe and his mysteries as we haue now; (for this was reserued to the tyme of grace, as sainct Paule in di­uers Gal. 3. & 4 Ephes. 3. Colos. 1. See S. An­gust. li. 19. cont. Fanst. cap. 14. places at large declareth:) that is al­beit they knew not expresselie, how and in what maner Christ should be borne; whether of a virgine or no; or in what particuler sorte he should liue and die; what sacramentes he should leaue; what waye of publishing his ghospel he should appointe, & the like; (wherof not with­standing verie manie particulers were re­ueiled to the Iewes from tyme to tyme, and the nearer they drew to the tyme of Christes appearance, the more plaine re­uelation was made of thes mysteries:) yet (I say) all and euerie one of thes holie All olde Sainctes be­leeued in Christ, and vvere sa­ued by Irym. Sainctes, that liued from Adam vntill the comming of Christ, had knowledge in general of Christian religion, and did be lieue the same: that is, they belieued ex­presselie, that there should come a Saueour and Redeemer of man-kinde, to deliuer them from the bondage contracted by the sinne of Adam.

This was reueiled straight after their fall, to our first parentes & progenitours [Page 136] in Paradise; to witt, that by the vvomans Gen. 3. v. 15. seede, our redemption should be made. In respecte wherof it is said in the reuela­tions, that Christ is the Lambe that hath bene slaine from the beginning of the Apoc. 13. worlde. And S. Peter in the first general Councel holdē by th' Apostles, affirmeth, Act. 15. v. 11. that th' old aunciēt fathers before Chri­stes Natiuitie, were saued by the grace of Christ, as we are now; which S. Paul con­firmeth Rom. 5. Ephe. 8. in diuers places. And finallie, the matter is so cleare in this behalfe, that the Reade S. Thom in 1. 2. qu est. 103. art. 4. & August. l. 18. de ciu. c. 47. & ep. 49. & 157. & tract. 45. in Ioh. Cle. Alex. lib. 6. strom. & Hieron. in cap. 3. ad Gal. The diffe­rences be­tvvene our beleefe and th' old fa­thers. Esay. 7. Gen. 49. whole schoole of diuines accor­deth, that the faith and religion of th' old fathers, before Christes appearance, was the verie same in substance that ours is now, sauing onlie, that it was more gene­ral, obscure, and confuse then ours is, for that it was of thinges to come, as ours is now of thinges past and present.

For example; they, beleeued a Redee­mer to come; and we beleeue that he is alredie come. They said, virgo concipiet, a Virgine shall conceyue; and we say virgo concepit, a virgine hath conceyued. They had sacrifices and caeremonies that presi­gured his cōming for the tyme ensuinge; we haue sacrifice and sacramentes that re­present his beinge for the tyme present. They called their Redeemer, th' expetatiō of Nations; and we calle hym now, the saluatiō of Nations. And finallie, there was no other difference betwene the old faith of good men from the begining, & ours; but onlie in the circumstances of tyme., clearnes, [Page 137] particularitie, and of the maner of protes­ting the same, by owtwarde signes and ceremonies. For that in substance they be­leeued the same Redeemer that we doe, & were saued by the same beliefe in his me­rites, as we are. For which cause [...] Eusebiꝰ well noteth, that as we are called now Christiās; so they were called then Christi, Psal. 104. that is, annointed, ī prefiguratiō of the true Christ, in whom they belie­ued, as the first & head of all other anoyn­ted, and who was the cause and authour of their annoynting.

By this then it is most manifest, that not onlie now to vs that be Christians, but at all other tymes from the begining of the world, & to all other persons and people what so euer, that desired to saue their soules, it was necessarie to beleeue and loue Christ, and to professe in harte his religion. For which consideration, I thought it not amisse in this place, after the former groundes layed, that their is a God; and that man was created and pla­ced here for his seruice: to demonstrate The causes of this Chapter. and proue also this other principle, that the onlie seruice of this God, is by Chris­tian religion. Wherin, albeit I doe not doubt, but that I shall seeme to manie, to take vpon me a superfluous labour, in pro­uing a veritie, which all men in Chri­stendom doe confesse: yet, for the causes before alleaged in the second chapter, which moued me in that place to proue, there is a God: that is to saye, first, for the [Page 138] comfort, strengthe, 2nd confirmation of suche, as either frō th' enimie may receiue temptations, or of them selues may desire to see a reason of their beleefe: and se­condlie, for awakening, stirring, or stin­gig of others, who ether of malice, care­lesnes, or sensualitie, are fallen in a slam­ber, and haue lost the feeling and sense of their beleefe, (for manie such wante not in thes our miserable dayes:) it shall not be (perhappes) but to verie good pur­pose, to laye together in this place, with the greatest breuity that possiblie may be, the most sure groundes and inuincible eui­dences, which we haue for declaration and confirmation of this matter.

For albeit, as th' Apostle S. Paul decla­reth, Heb. 11. the thinges which we belieue, be not such in them selues, as may be made ap­parēt by reason or humane argumētes, for that our faith, that is, th' assent of our iud­gemēt to the thinges propounded by God vnto vs, must be voluntarie, to th' ende it waye be meritorious: yet, such is the goodnes and most sweet proceeding of our merciful God towardes vs; as he will not leaue hym self without suficient testimonie both inwarde and owtward, as the same Apostle in another place doth Act. 14. testifie. For that inwardlie, he testifieth The diuers testimonies from God of the thinges that vve belieue. the truth of such thinges as we beleeue, by gyuing vs light and vnderstandinge, with internal ioye and consolatiō in be­leeuing them. And owtwardle, he gy­ueth testimonie to the same, with so ma­nie [Page 139] conueniences, probabilites, and argu­mentes of credibilitis, (as Diuines doe call them:) that albeit the verie pointe of that which is belieued, remaine still with some obscuritie, (to th' ende there may be place for our will and merite:) yet are there so many circumstances of likelihodes, to in­duce a man to the beliefe therof; 'as in all reason it may seeme against reason to de­nie or mistrust them.

This shall easelie appeare by the trea­tise following of Christ and Christia­nitie, and of the foundations of our reli­gion, which shalbe confirmed by so manie pregnant reasons, and most manifest cir­cústáces of euidét probabilitie: as I doubt not, but the zelous Christiá shall take ex­ceedig cófort therin, & esteeme hymself happie, to haue a lotteī that faith & reli­gion, wher he shall see and feele so much reason, proofe, and conueniencie to con­curre and shew it self, for his satisfaction.

And to this effect, it shalbe of no meane moment, that I haue proued before, the certaintie, diuinitie, and infallible truth of the Iewes scriptures, or old testament; which writinges we hauing receaued frō that Nation, that doth (as it were) pro­fesse enimitie against vs; & the same being writen so many ages before the name of Christianitie was knowen in the world: it can not bee but of singuler authoritie, what so euer shalbe alleaged out of those recordes for our purpose. And therfore as before, in prouing our first principle, that [Page 140] there is a God, we vsed onlie the testimonie of such witnesses, as could not be partial: The vn­doubted vvitnesses to be allea­geà in this chapter. so muche more in this confirmation of Christian religion, shall we stande onlie, ether vpon the confessions of such as are our enimies; or vpon the recordes of others, who must needes be indifferent in the cause, for that they liued before ether cause or controuersie in Christianitie was knowen or called in question.

My whole purpose shal be then, to make manifest in this chapter, that Iesus Christ The drifte of this chapter. was the Saueour and Redeemer of man­kind, fore-promissed and expected from the beginning of the world; that he was the sonne of God, and God him self; and consequentelie, that what so euer he hath lefte vs in his doctrine and religion, is true and sincere, & the onlie waie of Sal­uation vpon earth. For clearer proof and declaration wherof, I will reduce what soeuer I haue to saye herein, vnto three The prin­cipal hea­des. principal heades or braunshes, according to th' order of three distincte tymes whe­rin they fell out: that is to saye; in the first place shal be considered, the thinges that 1 passed before the natiuitie or incarnation of Christ. In the seconde, the thinges dōne 2 and verified from that tyme vnto his as­cension; which is the space of his aboode vpon earth. And in the third place, such euentes shalbe cōsidered, as ensued for cō ­firmatiō 3 of his deitie, after his departure.

In declaration of which three general poinctes, I hope by th' asistance of hym [Page 141] whose cause wee handle, that so many cleare demonstrations shalbe discouered; as shall greatelie cōfirme thie faith (gentle reader) and remoue all occasions of temp­tations to infidelitie.

Hovv Christ vvas fortolde to Ievve & Gētile. Sect. 1.

FIrst then, for such thinges as passed before Christ appeared in fleshe, and doe make for proofe of our Christian re­ligion; it is to be noted, that they are of two sortes, or at least-wise, they are to be The Ievve and Gētile. taken from two kindes of people, that is, partelie from the Iewes, and partelie frō the Gentiles. For seing that Christ was appointed from the beginning, yea, be­fore Ephes. 1. 1. Tim. 2. Tit. 1. 1. Pet. 1. the world was created, (as S. Paul affirmeth,) to worke the redemption both of Iewe and Gentile, and to make them both one people in the seruice of his father: herehēce it is, that he was fortold Esa. 2. 11. 19. Icrem. 9. 12. 16. and presignified to both thes Nations; & diuers forwarninges were left among them both, for stirring them vp to expect his comminge, as by the considerations following shall nost euidentelie appeare.

AND TO beginne with Iewes; no man can denie, but that throughout the whole THE. 1. conside­ration. THE Mes­sias promis­sed. bodie and course of their scriptures, that is, from the verie beginning to the last ending of their old testament, they had promissed to thē a MESSIAS, which is the same thing that we call, CHRIST, that is to saye, a person annointed and sent from [Page 142] God to be a Saueour, a Redeemer, a Paci­fier of Gods wrath, a Mediatour betwene God and man, a Satisfyer for the sinnes & offences of the world, a Restorer of our innocencie lost in Paradise, a Master, an Instructour, a Lawgyuer, and finally, a spi­ritual and eternal king, that should sitt & rule and reigne in our hartes, to conquer the power and tyrannie of Satan, that ouer-came our first parentes, and assaileth vs daylie.

This is euident by the first couenant of 1. The first couenant to Adam. Gen. 2. all, that euer God did make with man, whē he said to Adā our first father in Paradise; In vvhat daye so euer thou shalt eate of the tree that is forbidden, thou shalt die. Which coue­naunt being after broken, on the parte of our said progenitour: he receaued his iud­gement; but yet with a most benigne pro­misse of redemptiō for the tyme to come: for thus God said to the deuil or serpent that had deceaued hym: The seede of the vvoman shal crushe thy head, & thou shalt lye in Gen. 3. vvayte to hurt his heele. That is, one shall pro­ceede in tyme of the seede of the woman, who shall cōquer death & sinne (that are thy weapons,) and shall not care for thy tēptatiōs, but shall treade them vnder his feete, & this shal be Christ the Messias of the world. Thus did not onlie the Rabbi Mose. Ben maimon, in hunc locū. eldest Iewes and Rabbines vnderstād this place, (what so euer the latter haue dreamed, that there Messias should be only a tēporal kīg:) but also the old Chaldie paraphrase (na­med, Thargum Hierosolymitanum) expoūdeth [Page 143] it plainlie ī thes wordes, applīed vnto the deuil that had deceaued Adam. They haue a Tharg. Hie. ros. in Gen. 3. certaine and present remedie against the (o deuil,) for that the tyme shall come, vvhen they shall treate the dovvne vvith their heeles, by the helpe of Messias vvhich shalbe their kinge.

The same thing is confirmed by the ve­rie same promise seuen tymes repeated and To Abra­ham and Isaac. established vnto Abraham, that liued verie neare two thousand yeares after Adam: and againe to Isaac his sonne after hym: In [...] tuo benedicentur omnes gentes terrae. Gen. 12. & 18. & 22. All nations of the earth shalbe blessed in thy seede. Which had bene in deede, but a verie small benediction to Abraham, or to other Iewes after hym, (that neuer saw this Messias actuallie,) if he had bene onlie to be a temporal king; And much lesse blessing had it bone to Gentiles and other nations, if this Messias of the Iewes, must haue bene a temporal and worldlie Monarche to destroye and subdue them to the seruitude of Iurie, as fondlie thes later teachers of that nation doe contende.

This yet maketh the Patriarche Iacob 3. Jacobs pro­phetie of Christ. Gen. 49. more plaine, who prophesing at his death of the comminge of Christ, hathe thes wordes: the scepter (or gouernment) shall not be taken from the house of Iuda, vntill be come that is to be sent, and he shal be the expectation of Na­tions. Which later wordes, the fornamed Tharg. Hie ros. & Onkelos in hunc locū. Chaldie paraphrase, as also great Onke­los, (both of singuler authoritie amōgest the Iewes,) doe interprete thus: Donee Christus seu Messias veniat, &c. ‘vntil Christ [Page 144]or the Messias come, (which is the hope and expectation of all Nations, as well Gentiles as of vs that are Iewes;) the go­uernment shall not ceasse in the house or tribe of Iuda.’ By which sentence of scrip­ture, and interpretation of the Iewes thē selues, we come to learne, (besides the promisse for the Messias,) two cōsequen­ces in this matter, against the Iewes of la­ter tymes. First, that if their Messias must be The Mes­sias must be a spiri­tual & not a temporal king. the hope and expectation as well of Gen­tiles as of Iewes: then can he not be a tem­poral kinge to destroye the Gentiles, (as the latter Iewes would haue it,) but a spiritual king to reigne ouer them, and to bring in subiection their spiritual enimies for them, (I meane the fleshe, world, and deuil,) as we Christians doe beloeue. Secondlie, if the temporal kingdome of the house of Iuda, (where of Christ must come) shall ceasse and be destroyed at the comming of Messias, (as this scripture auoucheth:) how then can the Iewes ex­pect yet a temporal king for their Messias, as most fondlie they doe?

But to leaue this controuersie with the later Rabines, and to goe forward in declaration of that which we tooke in hand, that is, to shew howe Christ was fortolde & fore-promissed to the Iewes: it is to be noted, that after the death of Ia­cob last mentioned, there is litle recorded in scripture of the doinges of his people, during the fower hundred yeares of their bondoge in Egypt. But yet the tradition [Page 145] of that Nation teacheth, that as soone as The tradi­tion of the Ievves in Misdrasch Thehilim. they were deliuered out of Egypt, and were in the desert towardes the lande of promisse; the three sonnes of Chore, cal­led Aser, Eleana, & Abiasaphe, (of whome there is mention in the sixth chapter of Exodus and other where;) made diuers songes and Psalmes, in the praise and ex­pectation of the Messias to come; and that the holie men of that tyme, did solace thē selues with singing the same; and that king Dauid afterward in the second parte of his Psalmes, begining from the 41. vnto See the titles of thes psal­mes. 41. 44 45. 46. 47 48. 82. 84 86. 87. the 87. gathered the most parte of those olde songes together, as yet they are to be seene in his psalter.

But Moyses, who liued with that people, & gouerned them in the wildernes, had a cleare reuelatiō from God of this Messias, in thes wordes. I vvill raise vp a Prophet to 5. Moyses pro­phetie of Christ. Deut. 13. this people from amongest their brethren, euen as thy self; and I vvill putt my vvordes in his mouth, and he shal speak vnto them all thinges vvhich I shal ordaine vnto him: and he that shal refuse to heare the vvordes vvhich he shal speake vnto thē in my name; I vvill he reuenged vpon that man. Which wordes; that they can not be vn­derstoode of anie other Prophet that euer liued after Moyses among the Iewes, but onlie of Christ; it appeareth plainelie by this testimonie of the holye ghoste. And Deut. 34 were arose not anie other Prophet in Israel, like 6. Dauids pro­pheties of Christ. unto Moyses, &c.

After Moyses about fower hundred yeares, ensued Dauid, whoe for that he [Page 146] was a holie man, and the first king of the howse of Iuda, out of whose linage the Messias was to come: the particulers of this mysterie, were more abundantlie and manifestlie reueiled vnto hym, then vnto anie other. And first, for assurance that Christ should be borne of his stocke and linage, thes are the wordes of God vnto hym: I haue svvorne to Dauid my seruant: I vvil Psal. 88. 2. Reg. 7. 1. Para. 22 prepare thie seed for eternitie, and vvill build vp thie seat to all generations. Which wordes, albeit the later Iewes will applie to king Salomon, that was Dauides sonne; (and in some sense they may so bee; for that Salo­mon was a figure of Christ to come:) yet properlie thes wordes, and his kingdome shal Psal. Reg. 5. 1. Para. 22 stand for euer, and for all eternitie, which are so often repeated in this and other places of scripture; can not be verified in Salo­mō, whose earthelie kingdome was rent & torne in peeces straight after his death, 3. Reg. 12 by Ieroboam, and not longe after, as it were extinguished; but they must needes be vnderstoode of an eternal king, which should come of Dauids seede; as must also thes other wordes of God in the psalmes; Thou arte my sonne, this day haue I begotten the, Psal. 2. 45. 47. 67. 72. I vvill gyue vnto thee the Gentiles for thine inhe­ritance. Which was neuer fulfilled in Salo­mon, nor in anie temporal king of Iurie after hym. And muche lesse thes wordes that follow: He shall endure vvith the sunne, Psal. y 1. and before the moone, from generation to genera­tion. There shal rise vp in his dayes, peace, vntil the moone be taken avvay: he shal reigne from sea [Page 147] to sea, vnto the endes of the vvorld: All kinges shal adore hym, and all Nations shal serue hym: for that he shal deliuer the pooreman that had no helper; he shal saue their soules, and deliuer them from vsurie, and from iniquitie: all tribes of the earth shal be blessed in hym, and all Nations shal magnisie hym.

Thes wordes of Christs eternal king­dome; of his enduring to the worlds ende; of his vniuersal raigne ouer Iew and Gen­tile; of his adoration by all Nations; of his deliuerie of soules from bondage of iniquitie; and finallie, of his making bles­sed all tribes of the earth: can not possi­blie be applied to anie temporal kinge that euer was among the Iewes, or euer shalbe, but onlie to Christ.

This promisse made vnto Dauid for 7. Ieremies prophetie touching Christ. Ierem. 23 & 33. Christ to come of his seede, is repeated after his death by manie prophetes, and confirmed by God, as in Ieremie, where God vseth thes wordes: Behold, the dayes come on, and I vvill raise vp to Dauid a iust seede, and he shal reigne a kinge, and shal be vvise, and shal doe iudgement and iustice vpon earth. And in his dayes shal Iuda be saued, and Israel shal dvvel confidentlie, & this is the name that men shall call hym. OVR IVST GOD. All this was spoken of Dauids seede, aboue fower hundred yeares after Dauid was dead. Whiche proueth manifestlie that the former pro­misses and speeches, were not made to Da­uide for Salomon, or for anie other tem­poral kinge of Dauids lyne, but for Christ, who was called so peculierlie the sonne and [Page 148] seede of Dauid, for that Dauid was the first king of the tribe of Iuda, and not onelie was Christs Progenitor in flesh, but also did beare his Type and Figure in manie other thinges.

For which cause likewise in the pro­phet Ezechiel (who lyued about the same 8. Ezechiels prophetie of Christ. tyme that Ieremie did,) the Messias is cal­led by the name of Dauid hym self. For this God spake at that tyme, vnto Eze­chiel. I vvil saue my slocke; nor shall they bee anie longer lest to the spoile. &c. I vvil raise ouer Ezec. 34. them, ONE PASTOR, vvhich shall seede them; my seruāt DAVID, he shal seede them; and he shal Christ is called Da­uid. be their Shepheard, & Prince, and I vvill be their God, and vvil make vvith them a conenant of peace, &c. In which wordes, not onlie we Thalm. tract. Sanh. ca. helec. that are Christians, but the later Iewes also them selues doe confesse in their Thal­mud, that Messias is called by the name of Dauid, for that he shall descende of the seede of Dauide; as by reason also it must needes be so, for that king Dauid being dead fower hundred yeares before thes wordes were spoken, (as hath bene no­ted;) could not now come againe, to feede gods people or gouerne them hym self.

Esay the prophet, who Iyued about a The pro­pheties of Esay tou­chīg Christ. Esa. 2. hundred yeares before Ieremie and Eze­chiel, had maruelous for knowledge of the Meisias and his affaires, and describeth hym verie particulerlie, beginning i this maner. In the later dayes, the HILL of gods house, shall be prepared vpon the toppe of mountaines, and all Nations (or Gentiles) shal flovve vnto [Page 149] hym. And manie people shal say; come and lett vs ascende to the HILL of our Lord, & he shal teach vs his vvayes, and vve shall vvalke in his pathes: it shall iudge Nations. &c. Which verie Mich. 4. wordes are also repeated in Micheas the prophet, and are applied there, (as also here,) vnto the Messias, and can haue no other meaning, by the iudgement of the Iewes and Hebrues themselues. And Esay doth prosecute the same matter after­wardes, in diuers chapters. As for exāple, in the sowerth, talking of the same Mes­sias, which before he calleth the HILL of Gods hovvse; he addeth thes wordes. In Esay. 4. v. 2. that daye, shall the issue of our Lorde, be in [...] and glorie; and the fruite of the earth, in [...], and exultation, to all such as shal be saued of Israel. In which wordes, he calleth the Messias, both the issue of God, and the fruite of the earth, for that he should be both God and man. And in the nynthe chapter Esa. 9. v. 6. he calleth hym by thes termes: Admirable: Councelour: God: Stronge: Father of the future vvorld: and, Prince of Peace.

In the eleuenth chapter, he describeth hym most wonderfullie in thes wordes; there shall goe soorth a bransh of the stock of Iesse, Esa. 11. v. 1. (whiche Iesse was Dauids father;) and out of the roote of that branche, there shall mounte Psal. 71. Ecclc. 45. up a flovver, and the spirite of our lord shall rest upon hym; the spirite of vvisdome and of vnder­standing; the spirit of councel and sortitude; the spirite of knovvledge and pietie: he shall not iudge VVōnderful properties of Christ. according to the sight of (fleshely) eyes, nor yet condemne according to the hearing of (fleshely) [Page 150] eares; but he shall iudge poore men in iustice, and shall dispute in equitie for the mylde men of the earth. He shal strike th' earth vvith the rodde of his mouth, and vvith the spirite of his lippes shall he flea the vvicked man. Iustice shall be the girdle of his loynes, & faith shall be the bande of his reines. &c. Hytherto are the wordes of the Prophet; wherin nothing trulie can be more plaine and euident, then that by the rodde or branche of Iesse, is meant the Virgine Math. 1. Luc. 3. Act. 13. Rom. 15. Marie, who directelie descended of the linage of Iesse; and by the flovver ascen­ding from this branche, must needes be vn­derstoode Christ, that was borne of her, & had all those excellences & priuileges aboue other mē, which Esay in this place, assigneth vnto hym.

Whose further graces yet, and speciall Other pro­perties of Christ. Esa. 25. v. 8. diuine properties, the same Prophet ex­presseth more particulerlie in the chapters following, wher he sayeth: he shall for euer ouerthrovve and destroye death; he shal open the eyes of the blinde, and th' eares of the deafe; he shal not crie nor cōtēde, nor shal he accept the person of Esa. 35. v. 5. Esa. 42. v. 2. any man; but in truth shal he bring foorth iudge­ment. He shal not be sorrovvful nor turbulēt. &c. And finallie, in the fortie and ninthe chapter he alleageth the wordes of God the father vnto Christ, touching his com­mission in this sorte: it is too litle, that thou Esa. 49. v. 6. Act. 13. 47. be to me a seruant, to raise vp the tribes of Iacob, and to conuert vnto me the dregges of Israel. Behold, I haue appointed thee also for a light vnto The com­mission of Christ. the Gentiles, that thou he my saluation vnto the vttermost partes of all th' earth.

[Page 151] And to conclude this matter, without alleaging more propheties for the same; 10. The pro­phetie of Daniel tou­chinge Christ. (which in truth are infinite throughout the Bible;) Daniel that liued in th' ende of the captiuitie of Babylon, a litle before Aggaeus, Zacharias and Malachias (who were the last Prophetes that euer flo­rished amongest the Iewes, almost fiue hū ­dred years before the natiuity of Christ:) this Daniel (I say) reporteth of hym self, that being in Babylon, and hauing fasted, worne heare-cloth, and prayed longe vnto God: there came the Angel Gabriel vnto hym, at the tyme of Euening sacrifice, and fortolde hym, not onlie of the deliue­rance of the people of Israel from the captiuitie of Babylon out of hande, (for that the seuentie yeares of their punishe­ment, fortolde by Ieremie, were now ex­pired:) but also he tolde hym further, that the tyme of th' vniuersal deliuerance of mankinde, from the bondage and capti­uitie of sinne; was now shortened, & that after seuentie hebdomades, (which, as shalbe shewed after, make vp iust the tyme that passed from the rebuilding of the temple of Ierusalem after their deliue­rance from Babylon, vnto the birth of Christ:) there should be borne the Sa­ueour of the world, and be putt to death for redemption of mankinde.

The Angels wordes are thes. I am come to shevv vnto thee, ô Daniel, for that thou art a Dan. 9. v. 23. man of goode desires. And therfore doe thou marke my speeche, & vnderstande this vision. The seuētie [Page 152] hebdomades are shortened upon thie people, and upon thie holie Cittie; to th' ende preuarication may be consumed, and sinne receyue an ende: to th' ende iniquitie maye be blotted out, and eternal iustice brought in her place: & to th' ende visiōs & propheties maye be fulfilled, and the SAINCTE OF SAINCTES annointed. Knovv thou ther­fore and marke, that from the ende of the speeche, for rebuilding of Ierusalem, vnto Christ the CAP­TAINI; there shall chebdomades seuen, and hebdo­mades sixtie tvvo: and after sixtie tvvo hebdo­mades, Christ shalbe putt to death, and the people vvhich shall denie hym, shall not be his people.

I might passe on futher to other Pro­phetes and propheties, and make no ende, if I would alleage what might be said in this behalfe; for that the whole scripture runneth all to this one pointe; to fortell and manifest Christ, by signes, figures, pa­rables, The Butt of all scrip­ture. and propheties; and for this cause was it principallie writē. But that which is alredie spoken, shall be sufficient for our first consideration, wherby is seene, that among the Iewes, from age to age, Christ was prophetied and fortolde, together with th' eternite of his kingedome that should be spiritual.

NOVV FOLLOVVETH there a second consideration of the qualitie of Christs THE. 2. Conside­ration. person, no lesse of importance then the former, and wherin the later Iewes doe THAT Christe should be God and man. more dissent from vs; and that is, of the God hode of the Messias promissed. I saye the later Iewes or Rabines are different herein from vs, as also they are in manie [Page 153] other pointes and articles, wherin their ancestours (that were no Christians) did The cu­stome of Heretikes. fullie agree. Euen as all Heretiques are wonte to doe, that first breake in one pointe, and then in an other from the Ca­tholique faith; and so doe runne on, from one to one, makinge them selues in all thinges as dislike as they can, for hatred of that vnitie, wher vnto their pride will not suffer them to returne. So is it in the generation of this reprobate people, who first agreed with vs in al, or most pointes, touching Christ to come, & denied onlie the fulfilling or application therof, in Ie­sus our Saueour: But afterward, their vn­gratious ofspring, being not able to stāde in that issue against vs, deuised a new plea, and be tooke them selues to a farre higher degree of impietie, affirming, that we at­tributed manie thinges vnto Iesus, that were not fortolde of the Messias to come; and among other, that he should be God, and the sonne of God, and the second per­son in Trinitie, &c.

But herein (no doubt) thes obstinate and graceles men, doe shew them selues both ignorant of their owne scriptures, & disagreing from the writinges of their owne forefathers. For as for scriptures, it is euident by all or most of the propheties alleaged before, that Christ (or the Mes­sias) That Christ must bee both God and man. Gen. 3. r. 15. must be God, and the sonne of God, indued with mans nature; that is, both ma & God. So ī Genesis, where he is called, the seede of the vvoman; it is apparent, that he [Page 154] shalbe man; and in the same place, when he is promissed, to crushe the deuil and breake The. 1. proofe. Esa. 4. v. 2. his heade; who can doe this but onlie God? Likewise, when he is called Germen Iehouae, the seede of our Lord God; his Godhood is signified: as is his manhoode also, when in the same place he is named; the fruite of the earth. Who can interprete thes speeches; that his kingedome shall be euerlasting; That, he Esa. 9. Psal. 71. shall endure vntill the Moone be taken avvaye & after; That, God begate hym before Lucifer vvas created; That, no man can tell or recumpte his Psal. 109. generation; That, all Nations and Angels must Esa. 53. Psal. 96. Heb. 1. Psal. 110. adore hym; That, he must sitt at the right hand of God, and manie other such speeches pro­nounced directelie and expressie of the Messias; who (I say) can vnderstand or interprete them, but of God, seing that in man they can not be verified?

And as for the last of thes testimonies, concerning Christes sitting at his fathers right-hand: three of our Euangelistes doe Math. 2. Marc. 12. Luc. 20. reporte, that Iesus did blancke diuers of the learnedst pharisies with alleaging onlie thes wordes of Dauid: The Iehoua in Hebrne. Psal. 110. Lord said to my Lord, sitt at my right-hande, vntill I putt thie enimies as thy footest role. For, (said Iesus,) if Christ be Dauids sonne; how did Dauid call hym his Lord? signifying hereby, that albeit the Messias was to be Dauids sonne, according to his manhode: Rab. Io­nath. lib. collect. & Misdrasch. Tehilim in psal. 2. v. 7. yet was he to be Dauids Lord, according to his God head. And so doe both Rabbi Ionathan, and the publique commentaries of the hebrues, interprete the place.

[Page 155] Micheas is plaine; And thou Bethleem; The. 2. prose. Mich. 5. out of the, shall proceede a RVLER in Israel; & his going foorth, is from the beginning, and from the dayes of eternitie. This can not be vn­derstood of any mortal man, that euer was or shalbe. But yet Esay goeth further whē he saith. A litle childe is borne vnto vs, and a yonge sonne is gyuen vnto vs, and his principalitie is vpon his ovvne shoulder, and his name shalbe Esa. 9. GOD; the father of the future vvorld (So is it in the hebrue. or of eternitie;) the Prince of peace, &c. In which wordes, we see that Christ is called God. But if the Iew doe cauil here & saye, that El, or Elohim, the hebrue wordes, which we An obiec­tiō ansvvs­red. Exod. 15. v. 11. interprete God i this place, may some tyme be applied to a creature, (as in Exodus once El signifieth an Angel, and Elohim at othertymes, is applied to Iudges:) then marke and consider this discourse of Da­uid touchinge the Meisias, to whom he saith; Thou art beautiful in forme aboue the chil­dren Psal. 44. of men; grace is spred in thie lippes, and therfore hath God blessed thee for euer, &c. Thie seate ò God, is for euer and euer; the rodde (or scepter) of thie kingedome, is the rodde of direc­tion: thou hast loued iustice and hated iniquitie; therfore o God, thie God hath annointed thee vvith oyle of ioye aboue thie partners. Here the Mes­sias is called God twice, by the same worde Elohim, as God his father is; and therfore as the worde signifieth true God in th' one, so must it also in th' other.

But to remoue all grounde of this re­fuge The. 3. proofe. touching El, & Elohim, that are names of God, whiche may be communicated [Page 156] some tymes and vpon some occasions to Creatures: most apparent it is, that the name IEHOVA, which is called, Tetagram­mation, and which is so peculiar to God Christ is called Ie­houa. alone, as neuer it maye be cōmunicated to other: this name (I saye) which is of such reuerence among the Iewes, as they daie not pronounce it, but in place therof, doe reade Adonai, that signifieth Lorde: is euerie where almost in scripture, attributed to Christ, See Esa. cap. 18. v. 7. & cap. 28. v. 5. namelie where the latine inter­pretour hath trāslated, Lord: as for exāple, in two diuers places of Ieremie, after the longe description of the Messias, which before I haue recited; he concludeth thus: hoc est nomen quod vocabunt eum, Iehoua iustus noster, this is the name which they shall Iere. 23. v. 7. & ca. 33. v. 16. call hym OVR IVST IEHOVA, or as the Hebrue hath word for word, Iehoua our iustice. And so do the auncient hebrue ex­positours Rab. Abba coment in Thren. v. 16 confesse vpon thes places of Ie­remie, namly Rabbi Abba, who asketh the question what Messias shalbe called? and then he answereth out of this last place; he shalbe called th' eternal Iehoua. The like Misd. The­hilim in Psal. 20 v. 1 doth Misdrasche gathervpō the 20. Plasme, and Rab. Moses Hadarsan expounding a place of the Prophet Sophonie cap. 3. v. Rab. Mos. Hadars. in Gen. ca. 41. 9. concludeth thus: in this place Iehoua signi­fieth nothing els but the Messias.

Wherby appeareth, that as well in scripture, as also in th' opinion of olde he­brue expositours, the Messias was to be true God and man. And I might allea ge manie other testimonies of auncient Rab­bines, [Page 157] if it were not to long: especiallie, if I would enter among that kinde of expo­sitours, whom they call Cabalistes, (who Tvvo sortes of Hebrue expositours, Cabalistes and Thal­mudistes. are more auncient and lesse brutishe then are th' other sorte, which are termed Thal­mudistes,) I should finde many cleare and manifest declarations against the Iewes doctrine and errour of later tymes. And among other, (for example onlie of Ca­balistical expositions,) I referre the rea­der to the discourse of Rabbi Hacadosch (which in Hebrue signifieth the holie Rabbine, & liued not longe after Christ,) Iere. 23. v. 7. vpon the words of Ieremie before reci­ted; in which, for that he findeth the Mes­sias to be called Iehoua, which word in he­brue is compounded of the three letters Iod, and Vau, and He twise repeated: this doctor maketh his discourse by arte Caba­list in this maner.

‘Euen as (sayeth he) the letter He in Iehoua, is compounded of two other let­ters named Daleth and Vau, (as appeareth by their forme:) so shall the Messias (that Rab. Haca­dosch. in ca. 9. Esa. is signified by this word Iehoua,) be made of two natures, th' one diuine, & th' other humane. And as in Iehoua, there is twise A Cabali­stical dis­course. He, and consequentelie two Daleths and two vaus conteined therin: so are there two birthes, filiations, or chyldehodes in Messias; th' one, wherby he shalbe the sōne of God, and th' other wherby he shalbe the sonne of a virgine, which Esay calleth Esa. 8. the Prophetise. And as in Iehoua the letter He is twise putt, & yet both Hes doe make [Page 158] in effect but one letter: so in Messias there shalbe two distinct natures, and yet shall they make but one Christ.’ Thus playeth this Cabaliste vpon the letters of Iehoua (according to the maner of their diuini­tie,) and draweth great mysteries (as ye see) from letters endes. In which kinde of reasoning, albeit we putt no grounde or strength at all: yet is it sufficient to shew, that amōg th' elder Iewes it was a knowē and confessed doctrine, that Christ should be both God and man, and haue two na­tures conioyned distinctelie in one per­son, which is the same that we Christians doe affirme.

Nay, I will adde further (and this is The. 4. proofe. greatly to be obserued;) that the self same aūcient Iewes (as some also of the later) doe holde, & proue by scripture; that christ shalbe (for alwayes they speake of the Messias to come,) the verie sonne of God, & verbum Dei incarnatum, and the worde of Christ cal­led the sonne of God. God incarnate, or made fleshe. And for the first, that he shall be the sōne of God; they proue it out of diuers places alleaged by me before: as for example; out of Genesis, wher the latine texte hath; the scepter of Iuda shall not be taken avvaye; vntil he come, Gen. 49. v. 10. Rab. Dauid Kimhi in l. radicum. that is to be sent: the Hebrue hath, vntil Silo come; which Silo; Rabbi Kimhi proueth by a longe discourse, to signifie so much, as siliꝰ eiꝰ, his sonne; that is, the sonne of God. The same they proue by the place of Esay, wher the Messias is called, germen Iehoua, Esa. 4. v. 2 the seede or sonne of Iehoua. Which the [Page 159] Chaldaye Paraphrase turneth, the Messias of Iehoua. They proue the same also, out of Tharg. in hunc loca. diuers Psalmes wher Christ is called plai­lie the sonne of God; as where it is said: he Psal. 49. shall saye vnto me, thou art my father, &c. I vvill put hym, my eldest sonne, more higher then all the kinges of th' earth. &c. Iehoua said vnto me, thou art my sonne, this daye haue I begotten thee. &c. Kisse the This is ac­cording to the Hebrue text. Iere. 17. sonne ye kinges and iudges of the earth, Psal. 2. and happie are all they, that place their hope in hym. Which last words, can no waye be vnderstoode of the sonne of anie man, for that it is writen, cursed is the man, that put­teth his trust in man. Wherfore Rabbi Iona­than, Rabbi Nathan, Rabbi Selomoth, Aben Ezra, and others, doe conclude by thes and other places which they alleage, that the Messias must be the verie sonne of God.

And for the second pointe, they goe The. 5. proofe. yet further, affirming, this sonne to be verbum patris, the word of God the father. Which the forsaid Ionathan in his Chal­daye Paraphrase doth expresse in many translations: as for example; wher Esay Christ the vvorde in­carnate. sayeth, Israel shalbe saued in Iehoua vvith eter­nal saluation, (which Iehoua signifieth Christ, as all men confesse;) In the chaldaye paraphrase. Osee. 1. Ionathan turneth it thus: Israel shalbe saued by Gods Esa. 45. v. 17. vvord. So againe, wher God saith by Osee; I vvil saue the house of Iuda by Jehoua their God; (which is by Christ:) Ionathā trāsta­teth it thus: I vvill saue Iuda by the vvorde of their God. In like maner; wher Dauid wri­teth, Iehoua said to my Lord, sitt at my righte Psal: 11 [...] [Page 160] hand. &c. Ionathā expresseth it thus: Iehoua said vnto his vvorde, sit at my right hand. So Rabbi Isaac Arama writing vpon Gene­sis, Rab. Isaac. com. in cap. 47. Gen. Psal. 106. v. 20. R. Simeon. Ben. Iohai. com. in cap. 10. Gen. Iob. 19. v. 26. expoundeth this verse of the psalme, he sent his vvorde and healed them, &c. to be meát of Messias, that shalbe Gods worde. And Rabbi Simeon the chief of all the Caba­listes, vpon those wordes of Iob, I shall see God in my flesh, gatheretn, that the worde of God shall take flesh in a womans bel­lie. So that this doctrine was nothing straunge among th' auncient Rabines.

For further confirmation wherof also, (seing the matter is of so greate impor­tance,) consider what is recorded in a R. Simeon in Zohar. treatise called Zoar, of highe authoritie amonge the Iewes, where Rabbi Simeon that was last before alleaged, citeth a place oute of olde Rabbi Ibba, vpon thes wordes in Deuteronomie, Iehoua our Lord, is one Iehoua. Which wordes the said aun­cient Dcut. 6. v. 4. Rabbi Ibba interpreteth thus: ‘by the first Iehoua in this sentence, (being th' incommunicable name of God,) is sig­nified The bles­sed Trinitie proued by an auncient Rabbine. (sayeth he) God the father, prince of all thinges. By the next wordes, (our Lorde,) is signified God the sonne, that is fountaine of all sciences. And by the se­cond Iehoua in the same sentence, is signi­fied God the holie Ghost, prooceeding of them both. To all whiche is there added the word (One,) to signifie, that thes three are indiuisible. But this secrete shall not be reueiled vntill the comming of Mes­sias.’ Hytherto are the wordes of Rabbi [Page 161] Ibba, reported in Zohar by Rabbi Simeō; where also the said Rabbi Simeon inter­preteth thes wordes of Esay, Holie, Holie, Holie, Lord God of Sabaoth, in this maner. ‘Esa. by repeating three tymes holie, (saith he) doth as much as if he had saide. Holie fa­ther, holie sonne, and holie spirit, which three holies, doe make but one onlie Lord God of Sabaoth.’

Finallte, I will conclude this contro­uersie The. 6. proose. betwene the later Iewes and vs, with th' authoritie of learned Philo, who liued in the verie same tyme with Christ, and was sent Embassadour twise to Rome Philo lib. 2. legat. Ruff. l. 1. hist. 1. 6. Euscb. in Chion. in the behalf of his Nation in Alexādria; that is, first in the. 15. yeare of Tyberius th' Emperour, (which was three yeares before Christes passion, and the very same yeare wherin he was baptised by S. Iohn:) and the second tyme about eight yeares after, to witt, in the first of the reigne of Caligula. This man, that was the learnedst that euer wrote among the Iewes, after the writers of holie scrip­ture ceased; made a special booke of the banishment of his countrimen, where he hath this discourse insueing.

What tyme maye be appointed (saith
Philo li. de exulibus.
he, for the returne home of vs baninshed Iewes; it is hard to determine. For by tra­dition we haue, that we must expect the death of a high priest. But of those, some die quickelie, and some liue longer. But I am of opiniō, that this high priest shalbe, the verie worde of God. Whiche shalbe [Page 162] voide of all sinne, both voluntarie and involuntarie; whose father shalbe God, and this worde shalbe that fathers wis­dome, by which all thinges in this world-were created. His head shalbe annointed with oyle, & his kingedome shall florishe & shine for euer.

This wrote Philo at that tyme, whē he litle imagined, that the same high priest, whom he so much expected, and the same worde of God, whose king­dom he describeth, was now alredie come into the world. And this shal suffice for our second consideration, what maner of Messias the Iewes did expect.

NOVV IN THE third place commeth THE. 3. Conside­ration. VVHE­ther Christ shoulde change the lavve of Moyses. Gal. 3. & 4. Heb. 7. it to be considered, what authoritie and power the Messias should haue at his ap­pearance vpon earth, and whether he should change and abrogate the lawe of Moyfes or no? wherin there is no lesse controuersie betwene vs and the later Iewes, then in the former pointe of his diuinitie. For we holde with S. Paul, that the lawe of Moises was gyuen vnto the Iewes but for a tyme, to entertaine that people withall, and by th' outward signes 1. Cor. 10 & ceremonies which it had, (wherof the most parte, or all, prefigured Christ to come;) to be their schoolmaster & leader to the tymes of faith, wherin it should be abrogated, and a farre more perfect law sett downe by Christ in place therof. The lavve of Moyses imperfect. Heb. 7.

This we proue first, for that the law of Moyses was an imperfecte law, bringing nothing to perfection, as S. Paul well no­teth. [Page 163] It was (as S. Peter saith) a burden­some law, which the Iewes them selues Act. 15. were not able to beare, for the multitudo of ceremonies therin contained. It was a carnal and seruile law, consisting most in th' external. It was a law of terrour and feare, more then of loue and libertie Gal. 3. of spirit. It was a law (as I said before) of signes and figures for thinges to come, & consequentelie to cease, when those thin­ges which it prefigured, should come to be present. It was a law peculier and pro­perfor Deut. 15. the Iewes alone, without respect of all the rest of the world; and th' excer­cise therof was allowed onlie in the coū ­trie Deut. 13. & 14. Leu. 5. & 23. Exo. 23. Deut. 27. of Iurie; & that which is more, it was not pmitted, but ī one place onlie of that countrie, that is, in Hierusalem, whether euerie mā was boūd to repaire thre tymes a yeare, to witt, at the Pasqua, at the Pēte­coste, & at the feaste of Tabernacles; & in that place alone, to make their sacrifices, & in no other countrie or place besides.

Now then reasoneth the learned Di­uine; Good rea­sones. if this law of Moyses were for the Iewes and Iurie onlie: how could it serue for the tyme of the Messias, who was to be kinge, as well of the Gentiles, as of the Iewes; & to rule all people in the world Psal. 2. 21. 26 Esa. 2. 11. 19. that should beleeue in hym, vnder one law? If th' excercise of this law, were al­lowable onlie, and lauful in Hierusalemt how coulde it possiblie bee fulfilled by Christians, that are dispersed ouer all the world? As for example; how could they [Page 164] repaīre to Hierusalem thrise euerie yeare? how could euerie woman that should dwell in England or India, repaire to Hierusalem for her purification after Leuit. 12. Exod. 13. Num. 8. euerie childebirth, as by the law she was commāded? Most euident it is then, which we said before, that this law was gyuen but to idure for a tyme. And to vse S. Pauls owne wordes, it was but, introductio me­lioris Heb. 7. spci, an introduction to a better hope. It was but an entertainement of that peo­ple, (which by their being amōg th' Egyp­tians were prone to idolatrie,) vntill Christ should come and ordaine a perfect law. That is, a law of spirit and internal The nevv lavve of Christ and the perfec­tiōs therof. affection: a law of loue and libertie: a law that should be common to all men, serue for all countries, tymes, places, and per­sons: a law that should be writen in the bowels of our hartes: a law that should be tollerable, easie, sweet, plaine, light, brief, and factible, as well to the poore as to the riche: a law (to conclude) that should consist in charitie.

This signified Moyses, when he said to his people, after he had deliuered the for­mer law vnto them: your Lord shall raise vnto you a Prophet of your ovvne Nation, and Deut. 18. from among your ovvne brethren, as my self: hym shall you heare. As though he had said; you shall heare me but vntill he come, that must be a law gyuer as my self; but yet of a more perfect law; and therfore more to be heard and obeyed. And then he addeth; vvho so euer shall refuse to heare the vvords of [Page 165] this Prophet, I my self vvill reuenge it, sayeth our Lord God. Which wordes can not be verified in anie other Prophet after Moy­ses vntill Christ; for that of those Pro­phetes the scripture sayeth, there arose no Deut. 34. Prophet like vnto Moyses in israel. Which is to be vnderstoode, that they had no au­thoritie to be Lawmakers as Moyses had, but were all bounde to th' obseruation of that law onlie which Moyses left, vntill Christ came, whom Moyses here calleth a Prophet as hym self, that is, a Lawmaker, & exhorteth all men to heare & obey hym.

This yet is made more plaine by the prophetie of Esay, who sayeth; out of Sion Esa. 2. shall come a lavve, and the vvorde of God out of Hierusalem. Which can not be vnderstood of Moyses law, that had bene published A nevv lavv pro­phetied. 800. yeares before this was spoken, and that, from the mount Sinai, and not from Sion: but Christs law began from Sion and Hierusalem, and from thence was spred into all the world. Which the same Esay forsawe when talking of the com­ming of Messias, he sayeth. In that daye there Esa. 15. shalbe an Aulter to God, in the middest of the lād of Egypt. And the title of our Lord at the ende therof, &c. and God shalbe knovven to the Egy­tians at that daye, and they shall honour hym vvith sacrifices and oblations. Which wordes could not be verified i th' old law of Moy­ses, for that by that law th' Egyptiās could haue neither aulter nor sacrifice; but at Christes comming it was fulfilled, when th' Egyptians were made Christians, and [Page 166] enioyed both th' Aulters & sacrifices that Christians doe vse.

The same thing was fortolde by God in Malachie, wher he sayeth to the Iewes and of the Iuishe sacrifices. I have no plea­sure Malac. 1. in you, neither vvill I receyne oblations at your handes. For that from th' vprising of the The repro­bation of th' old lavv vvith a promisse of a nevv. sunne, vnto the going dovvne therof, my name is great among the Gentiles, and they doe sacrifice vnto me euerie vvher, and doe offer vnto my na­me a pure oblation, saith the Lord God of hostes. In which worlds we see first, a reproba­tion of the Iuishe sacrifice, and conse­quentlie, of the law of Moyses, which de­pended principallie of that sacrifice. Se­condlie we see, that among the Gentiles, there should be a pure maner of sacrifice, more gratefull vnto God, then th' other was, and such, as might be perfourmed in euerie place of the world, and not be tied to one place onlie, as the Mosaical law and sacrifice was.

And finallie, I will conclude this whole matter, with th' expresse wordes of God hym self, concerning the ceremonies and preceptes of the olde law. Dedreis praecepta Ezec. 20. non bona, & iudicia in quibus non viuent. I gaue vnto them preceptes that were not good, and iudgementes wherin they shall not lyue. That is, they were not good to continue perpetuallie, nor shall they lyue in them for euer, but vntill the tyme by me appointed; of which tyme, he determi­neth more particulerlie by Ieremie the Iere. 3. prophet, in thes wordes. Beholde the dayes [Page 167] shall come, and I vvil make a nevv Couenant or Testament vvith the house of Israel and Iuda: A nevv Testament promissed. not according to that Couenant, vvhich I made vvith your fathers, vvhēn brought them foorth of the land of Egypt. Where you see, that at the comming of Christ into this world, (for of hym and his birth, he talketh at large in all this chapter;) there shalbe a new Te­stament, conteining a different law from that of th' old testament, which was giuen to the Iewes at their going foorth of Egypt.

Thus much then hytherto hath bene The summe of that vvhiche hathe bene said. shewed, that Christ in all ages was for­tolde & promissed: that he should be God: and that his authoritie should be to chāge the law of Moyses, (that was gyuen but for a tyme,) and to establishe a new law, and Couenant, & a new Testament of his owne, that should endure and continue for euer.

AND ALBEIT thes thinges be THE 4. Conside­ration. AL PAR­ticulers for­tolde of Christ. very wounderfull, and sufficient to esta­blishe any mans beliefe in the world, whē he shall see them fulfilled, (which shalbe th' argument of my second Section:) yet resteth not the scripture here, but passeth further, and fortelleth euerie particuler acte, accident, and circumstance, that shall fall oute of importance aboute the Mes­sias in his comming, incarnation, birthe, life, death, and resurrection. As for exam­ple; at what particuler tyme and season he should appeare. Gen. 49. v 10. Dan. 9. v. 26. Math. 1. v. 26. That he should be borne of a virgine. [Page 168] Esay 7. v. 14. That the place of his birth should be the Toune of Bethleē. Mic. 5. v. 1. Luc. 2. v. 21. Mat. 2. v. 16. Mat. 2. That at his birth all the infantes rounde about Bethleem should be slaine for his sake. Ierem. 31. v. 15. That the kinges of the easte, should come and adore hym, and of­fer gold, and other giftes vnto hym. Psal. 71. v. 10. That he should be presented by his mother in the Temple of Hierusalem. Ma­lach. Luc. 2. 3. v. 1. That he should flee into Egypt, and be recalled thence againe. Osee 11. v. 2. Esa. 19. v. 1. That Iohn Baptiste should goe before hym and crie in the desert. Esa. 40. v. 3. Malach. 3. v. 1.

After this, that he should beginne his owne preaching with all humilitie, quiet­nes, Mat. 5. and clemencie of spirit. Esa. 42. v. 2. That he should doe straunge miracles and heale all diseases. Esa. 29. v. 8. & 35. v. 5. & Mat. 4. & 8. Marc. 8. 61. v. 1. That he should die for the sinnes of all the world. Esa. 53. Dan. 26. That he should be betrayed by his owne disciple. Mat. 27. Psal. 40. v. 10. & 54. v. 14. & 108. v. 8. That he should be solde for thirty peeces of siluer. Mat. 16. Mat. 27. Zach. 11. v. 12. That with those thirtie pee­ces there should be bought afterward a field of Potshards Jerem. 30. That he should ride into Hierusalem vpon an asse before Mat, 21. 7. his passion. Zacha. 9. v. 9. That the Iewes should beate and buffet his face, and defile the same with spitting vpon hym. Esa. 50. Mat. 26. 67. v. 6. That they should whippe, and teare, and rent his bodie before they putt hym to death. Esa. 53. v. 2. Psal. 37. v. 18. That they should putt hym to death among thieues Luc. 22. [Page 169] and male factours. Esa. 53. v. 12. That they should gyue hym vineager to drinke, de­uide Mat. 27. his apparel, and cast lottes for his vp­per garment. Psal. 68. v. 22. & 21. v. 19. That Mat. 28. he should rise againe frō death the third daye. Psal. 15. v. 19. Osee. 6. v. 3. That he should ascende to heauen, and sitt at the right Luc. 24. Act. 7. hande of God his father for euer. Psal. 67. v. 19. & 109. v. 1.

All thes particularites and a number more, were reueiled in scripture touching the Messias, some fower thousand years, some two thousand, some a thousand, and the last of all, aboue fower hūdred yeares before Christ was borne. Which if we laye together, and doe consider withal, how exactelie they were fulfilled after­ward in the person of Iesus, as in the next section shalbe declared: if we adde also to this, that we haue receyued thes prophe­sies and predictions, from a Nation that most of all other doth hate vs, and that the same are to be seene and reade in their Bi­bles, euen worde for word as they are in ours: if you holde in memorie also, what inuincible proofes were alleaged before in the second chapter, for th' infallible truth & certaintie of those Hebrue scrip­tures: you shall fynde, that hardlie, anye thing can be imagined for manifestation of a truth, before it come to passe, which God hath not obserued in forshewing the Messias. THE. 5. Conside­ration.

AND ALL THES cōsiderations are touchinge the Iewes. There remaineth [Page 170] some what to be said of the Gētiles. Who MANIFE­station of Christ to the Gētiles. albeit they were to receyue their princi­pal knowledge in this affaire from the Iuishe Nation, to whom the Messias was first and principallie promissed, and from whom the Gentiles had to expecte both their Saue our and his Apostles; as also the scriptures for testimonie and witnesse of them both; and finally all their certaine knowledge and sounde vnderstanding in the mysteries of Christ: Yet had they also among them selues, some kynde of notice and forwarning in this matter, whiche being ioyned with that, whiche I haue set downe before of the Iewes, and exa­mined at the light of Gods diuine pro­pheties before alleaged: it will make ve­rie muche for confirmation of our Chri­stian veritie. And therfore this last consi­deration, shalbe of the fore-knowledge of Gentiles in this behalf.

For better vnderstanding wherof; it is to be noted, that besides all knowledge of the Messias, that diuers Gentiles might haue by the Hebrue scriptures, whiche (Chap. 1. as I haue shewed before,) were in the Greeke language, diuers ages before Christ was borne: or by th' instruction & conuersation of Iewes, with whom ma­nie Pagans did liue familiarlie: there re­mained Three pe­culiare vvayes vvherby Gentyles mighth care of Cbrist. three wayes peculier to Gentiles, wherby they receyued some vnderstan­ding & forwarning of this great mysterie. The first was, by tradition and writinges of their auncestours. The second, by pro­pheties [Page 171] of their owne. The third, by ad­monishement of their Idoles & Oracles, especiallie when the tyme of Christes ap­pearance drew neare.

And for the first way, it is euident, that The first vvaye. as the Iewes receyued diuers thinges by succession from their forfathers; & they againe from Moyses; & Moyses from the Patriarches, Iacob, Isaac, and Abraham, (who was the first man, from whom that whole natiō proceeded, and in whō they were distinguished from all other people in the world:) so had the Gētiles & other Natiōs their succession also of doctrine & Traditiō of learninge amonge Ievves and Gentiles. monumētes, euen from the beginning; al­beit the lower they went, the more cor­rupt they were, and more obscured in di­uine knowledge, by their excercise ī ido­lat ie. So wee know that the Romans had their learning from the Grecians; & the Graecians frō th' Egyptians; th' Egyptians, from the Chaldaeans, who were the first people that receyued instruction in diuine matters from Adam, Methusalem, Noe, & others of those first and auncient fathers.

Now then it is to be considered, that Euseb. in Chron. by consent of writers, there were three famous men that liued together in those auncient times; to witt; Abraham, (who Abrahā. Iob. Zoroa­stres. descending from HEBER, was the father and beginner of the Iewes or Hebrues:) And wth hym, Iob, and one Zoroastres, that were not of that linage of Heber, but as we call them for distinctiōs sake, either heathens or Gentiles, albeit that diffe­rence [Page 172] was not then in vre. And of Iob, we know by the testimonie of his booke, that he was a most holie and vertuous mā. Of Zoroastres, we know onlie, that he was greatelie learned, and left monumētes therof vnto his posteritie.

This Zoroastres, liuing in Abrahams time, might by accompt of scripture, see or speake with Noe. For that Abraham was borne aboue three skore yeares before Noe disceassed. And Noe was borne aboue fyue hundreth yeares before Methusalem dyed; which Methusalem, had lyued two hundred and fortie yeares with our first father Adam, that had enioyed conuersa­tiō both with God & Angels. And therby (no doubt,) could tell many highe and se­crete mysteries, especiallie touchinge Christ, in whom all his hope for redemp­tion of his posteritie, did consist. Which mysteries & hidden knowledge, it is not vnlike, but that Abrahā, Iob, Zoroastres, and others, who lyued at that tyme with them, might recevue at the third hand, by Noe and his children, I meane The Ievves haue a tradition, that Abra­ham serued Sem. 15. yeares in [...]. Sem, Cham, and Iaphet who had lyued before the Fludde, and had seene Methusalem, which Methusalem lyued (as I sayed,) so many yeares with Adam.

Herehence it is, that in the writinges of Zoroastres which are yet exstant, See Clem. Alex. lib. 1. strom. & Orig. l. 6. con. Celsu. & Procl. l. 2. & in Part. Pla­ltonis. or recorded by other authours in his name, there are founde verie many plaine spe­ches of the sonne of God, whom he cal­leth, Secundam mentem, the second mynde. [Page 173] And muche more is it to be seene in the writinges of Hermes Trismegistus, (who lyued after in Egypt, & receyued his lear­ninge from this Zoroastres;) that thes Trisinegi­stus. first heathen philosophers had manifest vnderstanding of this second person in Trinitie, whom Hermes calleth; the first be­gotten sonne of God; his onlie sonne; his deare, eternal, immutable, & incorruptible sonne; vvho. Mercurius Herm. in Paemād c. L & deiceps. Sacred name is inessable: thos are his wordes. And after hym againe among the Grae­cians, were Orphens, Hesiedus, & others, that vttered the like specches of the sonne of God; as also did the Platonistes, whose Graecians. wordes and sentences were to longe to repeate in this place. But he that will see them gathered together at large, lett hym reade either Origen against Celsus the heathen, or els S. Cyril in his first booke against Iulian th Apostata. And this shall suffice for this first way, wherby the Gen­tiles had vnderstanding of Christ.

For the second thing which I mentio­ned, it is to be vnderstoode, that amonge the Gētiles, there were certaine prophe­tisses or women prophetes, called Sibyllae; The pro­pheties tou­ching Christ among the Gentiles. which in the greeke tongue (as Lactan­tius gathereth,) maye signifie so much, as either Councelours to God, or Reutilours of Gods Councel. And thes women being en­dued (as it seemeth) with a certaine spi­rit Lact. lib. 1. [...]. instit. cap. 6. of prophetie, did vtter from tyme to tyme, (though in such termes as most Gē ­tiles vnderstoode them not;) most won­derful particularities of Christ to come, [Page 174] agreīg (as it were) wholie, with the pro­phetes of Israel, or rather setting downe Of the Si­bylles. manie thinges in much more plaine and euident speeche, then did th' other: th' one of them beginning her greeke meerer in thes verie wordes: knovv thie God, vvhich is the sonne of God, &c. An other of thē maketh a whole discourse of Christ in greeke verses called Accrostichi; for that the begī ­ning Lact. lib. 4. instit. ca. 6. of euerie verse, is by some letter ap­pointed in order, foorth of some one sen­tēce, that runneth through the whole. As for example; the sentence that passed throughe the beginning of those verses whiche now we talke of, was this. S. Augu­stine trans­lateth al the verses. l. 18. de Ciuitat. Dei ca. 23. Iesus, Christ, Sonne of God, Saueour, Crosse. And there were so manie verses in the whole dis­course, as there are letters in this sentēce. The total argumēt beīg, of the incarnatiō, life, death, glorie, and iudgement of the sonne of God. And the last two verses of all the meeter, are thes; He that hath bene here described by our Accrossike verses; is an im­mortale Saueour, and a Kynge, that must suffer for our sinnes.

And for that thes propheties of the Si­bylls, are of marueilous importāce to cō ­firme the veritie of our Christian religiō; and are alleaged oftē for that purpose, by The greek verses of the Sibylles, of vvhat importance and autho­ritie. the most graue & learnedst fathers of our primatiue churche: as for example; by Iu­stinꝰ the martyr, in his apologie for Chri­stians; by Origen, against Celsus; by Ar­nobius, and his scholler Lactātius, against Gentiles; by S. Cyril, against Iulian th' a­postata; [Page 175] by S. Augustine, in his Cittie of God; by Eusebius, and Constantine th' Em­perour, and others: I will say somewhat. in this place, for th' authoritie and credite of thes verses, least anie man perhappes might imagine, (as some Gentiles in olde tyme would seeme to doe:) that they were deuised or inuented by Christians. And the most of my proofes, shall be out of a learned See this Oration in Eusebius l. 4. ca. 32. de vita Con­stantini. at the onde. oration, writen in latine by the foresaid Emperour, to a Councel of Pre­lates in his dayes; wherein he indeuoureth to shew, the vndoubted authoritie of thes Sibyll propheties, which he esteemed so much (after diligent search made for their credite and sinceritie;) as they seeme to haue bene a great cause of his constant zele and feruour in Christianitie.

First then he sheweth, that thes predi­ctiōs of the Sibylles, could not be deuised or seigned by Christians, or made after The. I. proof sop credit of the Sibyl­verses. Varro lib. de rebus diuin. ad C. Caesarem. pont. max. the tyme of Christes natiuicie; for that Marcus varro, a wost learned Romā, who liued almost a hundrethe yeares before Christ, maketh mention at large of thes Sibylles, (who in number he saith were ten,) and of their writinges, countries, & ages: as also of the writers or authours, that before his tyme, had left memorie of them. And both he and Fenestella, (an other heathé,) doe affirme, that the wri­tinges of thes Sibilles, were gathered by the Romans from al partes of the world, Fenest. c2. de 15. viria (wher they might be heard of,) and layed vp with diligence, and great reuerence [Page 176] in the Capitole, vnder the charge and cu­stodie of the highe priestes and other Of­ficers, in such sorte, as no man might see or reade them, but onlie certaine Magistrates called the, Fistine, and muche lesie might any man come to falsifie or corrupt them.

Secondlie he sheweth, that Sibylla Ery­thraea, who made the former Acrostike verses of Christ, restisicth of her self, that The. 2. proofe. she liued about 600. years after the fludde of Noe, and her countriman Apollidorus Erythraeus and Varro doe reporte, that she liued before the warre of Troie, & pro phetied to the Graecians that went to that warre, that Troie should be taken. Which was more then a thousand years before Lact. l. 1. instit. cap. 6. Christ was borne. Cicero also, that was slaine more then fortye yeares before Christs natiuitie; translated into Latine, Cicero. the former See Cicero of this Acrostike verses of Sibylla, l. 2. de diuina­tione. Acrostike verses, as Constan­tine sayeth, which translation was to be seene in his workes, when Constantine wrote this oration; so that by no meanes they could be deuised or brought in by Christians.

Thirdlie he sheweth, that the same Ci­cero, The. 3. proofe. in diuers places of his workes, besids the mention of these Acrostike verses, insinuateth also an other prophetie of Si­bylla, touching a king that should rise ouer all the world, wherwith hym self and the Romans were greatlie troubled: and therfore in one place, after a longe inuectiue against his enimie Antonie, that would seeme to gyue credit to that [Page 177] prophetie; or rather as Cicero doth vrge against hym, would haue had the same ful­filled in Iulius Caesar: he concludeth thus: lett vs deale vvith the prelates of our religion, to Cicero l: 2. de diuin. paule post medium. alleage onle one thing rather out of the bookes of Sibylla, then a KINGE, vvhom nether the Gods nor yet men, came suffer hereafter to be in Rome.

The like prophetie of Sibylla touching Cic. l. 1. ep. fam. ep. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. a king, is insinuated by the same Cicero in his first booke of Epistles to Lentulus; to witt, that See lib. 2. oraculorum Sibyl. when the Romans should re­store a king in Egypt by force; thē should insue the vniuersal king, that should be Lord ouer Romans and all other. Which prophetie, being much vrged by Epist. 5. Cato the Tribune, against the restoring of He vvas father to Cleopatra. Ptolo­maeus Auletes late king of Egypt, that for his euil gouernment was expulsed by his subiects: the matter was to be of such weight by all the Roman Senat, (I meane the sequel of this prophetie:) that whereas otherwise for manie respectes, they were greatelie inclined to haue restored the The scare vvhich the Romās had of th' vni­versal king, prophetied by Sibylla. said Ptolomie: yet in regarde of this, reli­gion, (as they called it,) they changed their mindes. But what? could they alter by this, the determination of God? No truly; for sone after, king Polomie percey­uing the Senatours mindes to be altered; fled secretely from Rome, to one Gabinius Dion. l. 39. hist. that was Gouernour of Siria; and for fiue Millions of gold, that he promissed hym, he was by the forces of Gabiniꝰ restored; and so not longe after, was Christ borne, according to the meaning of the Sibyl [Page 178] prophetie.

Fowerthlie, the say de Emperour Con­stantine proueth th' authoritie of thes Si­bylles verses, for that Augustus Caesar be­fore Christ was borne, had such regarde The. 4. proofe. of them, that he layed them vp, in more straite order then before, (according as Suetonius a heathen, in his life reporteth,) vnder the Alter of Apollo, in the hill Pa­latine; wher no man might haue the sight Suet. tranq. ca. 3. de vita Augusti. of them, but by special licence; which li­cence, Constantine proueth, that Virgil the Poet had, for that he was in highe fa­uour with Augustus. And therfore in a cer­taine Ecloge, or composition of verses, that he made in praise of a yong chylde na­med The pro­pheties of Sibylla al­leaged by Virgile. Saloninus, newlie borne to Asinius. Pollio, Augustus great friende; or (as other take it,) of Marcellus, a litle boye, that was nephue to Augustus by his Sister Octauia; or rather of them both, for adu­lation of Augustus: he applieth (I say) to one, or both of thes yonge infantes, the whole prophetie, which he had reade in the verses of Sibilla, touching the birthe of Christ, & of the peace, grace, & golden world, that should come with hym. Vpon which subiect he beginneth thus. Virgil. Eclog. 4. Christes preordina­tion.

Vltima Cumaei venit iam temporis aetas;
Magnus ab integro saeculorum nascitur ordo;
Iam redit & virgo; rediunt Saturnia regna.

‘That is; now is come the last age pro­phetied by Sibylla called, Cumaea: now cō ­meth to be fulfilled the great ordinaunce and prouidence of God, appointed from [Page 179] the beginning of the world; (thes were Sibylles wordes:) now cōmeth the vir­gine; and the first golden dayes of Sa­turnus, shall returne againe.’

Thus much translated Virgile out of Sibylla, touching th' eternal determinatiō of God, for Christs comming into this world; as also of his mother the virgine; and of the infinit blessings that should ap­peare with hym. Now ensueth in the same Poet, what Sibylla had said for Christs actual natiuitie. Christes birth.

Iam noua progeniescaelo dimittitur alto:
Chara Deum soboles. &c.

‘Now a new progenie or ofspring, is sent downe from heauen; the dearlie be­loued issue or childe of the Gods.’ And note here, that Sibilla said plainlie; chara Dei soboles, the dearlie beloued sonne of God, and not of Gods; but that Virgile would follow the style of his time. And thirdlie, he setteth downe out of Sibylla, th' effect and cause of this sonne. of Gods natiuitie, in thes wordes. Christes cause of cō ­minge.

Te duce, si qua manent, sceleris vestigia nostri;
Irrita perpetua, soluent formidine terras.

‘That is; thou beinge our leader, or Captaine; the remnant of our sinnes, shalbe made voide, or taken awaye, and shall deliuer the world for euer, frō feare for the same.’ Thes are virgils wordes translated (as I said,) out of Sibilla. And now consider you in reason, whether thes propheties might be applied (as Virgile applied them,) to those poore children in [Page 180] Rome or no, who died soone after this flatterie of Virgile, without doing good either to them selues or to others? Albeit (perhappes) in this pointe, the Poet bee to be excused, in that he being not able to imagine, what the Sibyl should meane: made his aduantage therof, in applying the same to the best pleasing of Augustus.

Thes then are the proofes, which Cen­stantine vseth for the credit and authori­tie of the Sibyl verses. And of Sibilla Eri­thraea in particuler, that made the Acrostik verses before mentioned, of Christes death and passion; he concludeth in thes wordes. Thes are the thinges vvhich sell from Cōstātines opiniou of the spirite of Sibyila Erythraea. orat. ad caetum Sanct. cap. 18. heauen into the mynde of this Virgin to surtell. For vvhich cause, I am induced to accompt her for blessed, vvhom our Saucour did voutel safe to chuse for a prophet, to denounce vnto the vvorld, his holie prouidence tovvardes vs. And we may consider in this whole discourse of Con­stantine, for authoritie of thes verses. First, that he vseth onlie the testimonie of such 1 writers, as liued before Christ was borne, or Christians thought vpon. Secondlie, that he vseth thes prooses to no meaner 2 audience, the to a Councel and congrega­tion of learned men. Thirdlie, that he was 3 an Emperour which vseth them; that is, one that had meanes to sce and examine the original Copies in the Romane treasa­rie. Fowerthelie, that he had greate lear­ned 4 men aboute hym, who were skilful, and would be diligent in the searche of suche an antiquitie of importance; espe­ciallie [Page 181] Lactantius, that was Master to his Lactātius. sonne Crispus, & who most of anie other authour, reciteth and confirmeth the said Sibyls verses: & Eusebius Caesariensis, that wrote th' ecclesiastical historie, & See Eu­seb. l. 4. cap. 32. de vita Cōstantini [...] hovv this oratiō vvas first vvriten in latine & translated into greek. recor­deth this oration of Constantine therin. And finallie, we may consider that Con­stantine was the first publique Christian Emperour, and liued within 300. years after Christ; whē the recordes of the Ro­mās were yet whole to be seene. He was a religious, wise, and graue Emperour; and therfore would neuer haue bestowed so muche labour, to confirme suche a thing, at such a tyme, to such an audiēce; had not the matter bene of singuler importance. And thus much of the second pointe tou­chinge prophetes among Gentiles.

There remaineth onlie a worde or two Of the con­fession of Oracles, cō ­cerninge Christes cō ­minge. to be spokē of the thirde; which is, of the confession of deuils and Oracles, concer­ning Christs comminge; especiallie, whē the tyme of his appearance drew neare, and that they begā to forefeele his power and vertue. Wherin, as I might alleage di­uers examples recorded by the Gentiles them selues: so for that I haue bene some­what longe in the former pointes, and shall haue occasion to saye more of this matter, in an other place hereafter: I will touche onlie here two oracles of Apollo, concerninge this matter. Th' one wherof; was to a priest of his owne, that demaun­ded hym of true religion, and of God; to whom he answered thus in greeke: ô thou [Page 182] unhappie priest, vvhy doest thou aske me of God, The first Oracle. that is the father of all thinges; and of this most renoumed kynges deare and onlie sonne; and of the spirit that conteineth all &c. Alas, that Suidas in Thulis. & Porphy. & Plutarch. de oracul. spirit vvill inforce me shortelie, to leaue this ha­bitation and place of oracles.

Th' other oracle, was to Augustus Gae­sar, euen about the verie tyme, that Christ was redy to appeare in flesh. For where as The second Oracle. the said Emperour now drawinge into age, would needes goe to Delphos, and Suidas i. vita Au­gust. Niceph. l. 1. bist. cap. 17. there learne of Apollo, who should rei­gne after hym, & what should become of thinges whē he was dead: Apollo would not answere for a greate space; notwith­standing, Augustus had bene verie liberal, in making the greate sacrifice called Heca­tombe. But in th' ende, when th' Emperour began to iterate his sacrifice againe, and to be instant for an answer: Apollo, (as it were) inforced, vttered thes straunge wordes vnto hym. An Hebrue childe, that ruleth ouer the blessed Gods, commaundeth me to leaue this habitation; and oute of hand to gett me to hel. But yet doe you'departe in silence from our Aulters. Thus much was Apollo infor­ced to vtter of his owne miserie, and of the cōming of th' Ebrue boye that should putt hym to banishment. But yet the de­ceptful spirit, to holde still his credire, would not haue the matter reueiled to many. Wherupon, Augustus falling into a greate musinge with hym self, what this answer might importe: returned to Rome and builded there an Aulter in the Capi­tole, [Page 183] with this latine inscription, (as Ni­cephorus affirmeth;) Ara primogeniti Dei. Niceph. l. 1. hist. cap. 17. Th' Aulter of Godes first begotten sonne.

Thus then haue I declared how that The cōclu­sion of this first Sectiō. the cōming of Gods sōne into the world, was for tolde both to Iewe and Gentile, by all meanes that possiblie in reason might be deuised: that is; by propheties, signes, figures, ceremonies, tradition, and by the confession of deuils them selues. Nor onlie, that his comming was for­told: but also; why, and for what cause he was to come; that is; to be a Saueour of the world; to die for sinne; to ordeine a new law, and more perfect common wealth. How also he was to come: to witt; in mans fleshe; in likenes of sinne; in pouertie, & humilitie. The tyme likewise of his appearance was foresignified, to­gether with the maner of his birth, life, actions, death, resurrection, and ascensiō. And finallie, nothing can be more desired for the fore knowledge of anie one thing to come; then was deliuered & vttered cō ­cernīg the Messias, before Christ or Chri­stians were talked of in the world. Now thē remaineth it to consider & examine, Th' argu­ment of the tvvo sectiōs follovving. whether thes particularities, fortolde so lōg agoe of the Messias to come, doe agree in Iesus, whom we acknowledge for the true Messias. And this shallbe the subiect & argument, of all the rest of our speeche in this chapter.

Hovv the former predictions vvere fulfilled in Iesus, at his being vpon earth. Sect. 2.

ALbeit in the pointes before recited, which are to be fulfilled in the Mes­sias at his comming; we haue some con­trouersie and disagreemēt with the Iewe, as hath bene shewed: yet our principal contention in them all, is with the Gen­tile and heathen, that beleeueth no scrip­tures. Our contro­uersie vvith Gentiles. For that in diuers of the fornamed articles, the Iewe standeth with vs, and for vs; & offereth his life in defence ther­of, as farre foorth, as if he were a Chri­stiā. In so much, that the Gētile oftē times, is inforced to maruaile, when he seeth a people, so extremelie bent against an other, as the Iewes are against Christiās; and yet to stand so peremptorilie, in de­fence of thos verie principles, which are the proper causes of their disagreement.

But hereunto the Iew maketh an­swer; that his disagreement from vs, is in th' application of thos principles. For that in no wise he will allowe, that they were, or may bee verified in Iesus. And herein he standeth against vs, much more obstinatelie then doth the Gentile. For that the Gentile, as soone as he commeth Our con­trouersie vvith the Ievves. once to vnderstande and beleeue the pro­pheties of scripture; he maketh no doubt or difficultie in th' application thereof; for that he seeth the same most euidentelie fulfilled in our Saueour. Which is the cause, that fewe or no Gentiles since [Page 185] Christs appearance, haue come to be Iewes, but that presentelie also they pas­sed ouer to be Christians.

But the Iewe, by no meanes wilbe mo­ued to yeeld, albeit he haue neither scrip­ture, Th' obsti­nacie of the Ievves. nor reason, nor probabilitie for his defence. Which among other thinges, is a verie great argument to proue, that Iesus was the true Messias in deed, seing that among the markes of the true Messias set downe by Gods Prophetes, this was one; that he should be refused by the Iuishe Nation. Herehence are those wordes of Psal 113. Esa. 28. the Holie Ghost so longe before vttered. The stone vvhich the The builders are the Ievves, who take vpon thē to build Gods house. Math. 21. Esa. 6. Deut. 28. builders refused, is made the head stone of the corner: this is donne by God, and is maruailous in our eyes. Hence is that great complainte of Esay, touching th' incredu­litie & obstinacie of this people, against their Messias at his comming; which Moyses also longe before Esay, expressed most effectuallie.

It maketh then, not a litle for our cause, (gentle reader,) that the Iuishe Nation is The Ievves obstinacie against [...], [...] [...] for vs. so wilfullie bent against vs; and that they refused Christ so peremptorilie, at his being among them. For whom so euer that Nation should receyue, and acknow­ledge: it were a great argument by scrip­ture, that he were not in deede the true Messias. But yet to demonstrate [...] worlde, how litle shew of reason they haue, in standing thus against their owne saluation, and in refusing Iesus, as they doe: I will in as great breuitie as I may, [Page 186] runne ouer the chief pointes that passed at his being vpon earth, and therby exa­mine by the testimonies of his greatest enimies, whether the forsaid propheties and all other signes, which haue bene frō the beginning, to fortell vnto vs the true Meisias; were fulfilled in hym and his actions or no.

And for that the matters are manie and diuers, that will come herein to be The diuisiō of this Sec­tion into sovver Cō ­siderations. handled: I will for order sake, reduce all to fower considerations. Wherof the first shalbe, touching the tyme foreprophetied of the comming of Meisias, and whether the same agreed with Christes Natiuitie or no. The seconde shalbe, of diuers parti­culers that passed in Christes incarnation, birth, circumcision, and other accidētes, vntill the tyme that he began to preach. The third shalbe, of his life, conuersatiō, miracles, and doctrine. The fowerth and last, of his Passion, death, resurrection, and Ascensiō. In all which (as I sayed before,) I will vse no one Authour or testimonie The testi­monies here vsed. of our owne side, for prouing anie thing that is in controuersie bytwene vs: but all shall passe by trial, either of their owne scriptures; or of manifest force and conse­quence of reason; or els by expresse re­corde of our professed enimies.

FOR THE first then, concerning the tyme, which is the principal and head of THE 1. Conside­ration. THE tyme appointed all the rest; it is to be noted, that by con­sent of all writers both Pagan, Iuishe, & Christian; Iesus, (whom we beleeue and [Page 187] confesse to be true Christ,) was borne the 25. daye of December, in th' ende of the 41. yeare of th' Emperour Augustus reigne, which was 15. years before his reigne ended. Also in the beginning of the 33. yeare of Herodes reigne in Iurie, which was 4. yeares and more before his death. And from the beginning of the world, as See Eu­seb. i chro. some accompt; 5199. And as other; 4089. for that in this pointe betwene the Hebrues and Graecians, there is a differēce of some litle more then a hundreth years, concerninge their reconinge.

The state of the worlde at Iesus Nati­uitie, The gene­ral state of the vvorld at Christes comminge. was this. The three Monarchies of the Assyrians, Persians, and Graeciās, were past ouer, and ended: & the Romans were entered into the fowerth, that was grea­ter then anie of the rest, according to the prophetie of Daniel, 500 yeares before. Dan. 2. Octauius Caesar, surnamed Augustus, after fyue ciuil warres by hym self waged, and after infinit broyles and bloodshed in the Suetom tranq. & Aurel. vi­ctor. & alii, in vita Au­gusti. worlde, reigned peaceablie alone, for many yeares together: & in tokē of an vni­uersal peace ouer all th' earth: he caused the temple gates of IANVS to be shutt, ac­cording to the custome of the Romans in such cases; albeit this had happened but twise before, from the buylding of Rome vnto that tyme. And the verie same daye that Christ was borne in Iurie, Augustus commaūded in Rome (Oros. l. 6. hist. ca. 22. as afterward was obserued,) that no man should call hym LORDE, therby to signifie the free libertie, [Page 188] rest, ioye & securitie, wherin al mē were, after so longe miseries, which by conti­nual warres the world had suffered.

By this we gather first, that this tyme of Iesus birth, agreed exactelie with the The. 1. proofe. The Roma Monarchie prophetie so longe before sett downe in Daniel, (who lyued in the first Monar­chie;) that after his tyme, there should be three Monarchies more, and the last, big­gest Dan. 2. v. 31. 34. 44. of all; at whose appearinge, the Mes­sias should come, and build vp Gods king­dome throughout all the world.

Secondlie, we see that fulfilled, which Esay aboue a hundreth yeares before Daniel, The. 2. proofe. The peace of all the vvorld. Esa. 9. v. 6. 7 & cap. 32. v. 18. fortold; that at the cōming of Christ; people should sitt in the beautie in peace. And againe; there shalbe no ende of peace. And yet further: he shall be Prince of peace. And kinge Dauid, longe before hym againe; in his dayes there shal ryse iustice, and abundance of peace. Which thinge, though especiallie it be to be vnderstoode, of th' internal peace Psal. 71. and tranquilitie of our myndes and soules: yet, considering that external peace also was necessarie for a tyme, for the quiet plantinge & publishinge of Christes Gos­pel: and seinge that the same wās brought to passe most miraculouslie vpon the sud­dain, when in reason men least might ex­pect the same, for th' infinite warres wherin the worlde a litle before had bene; and by reason of the Roman Monar­chie so freshelie established; (whiche in their begininges are wont to be trouble­some:) this peace (I saye,) can not be, but, a [Page 189] greate argument, that this was the proper tyme of the Messias his comminge. And this, for the state of the world in general.

But now for the particuler state of The. 3. proofe. The scep­ter of Iuda. Iurie, at Iesus natiuitie; thus it was, ac­cording as Iosephus the Iew, (who was borne within fyue yeares after Christ his passion,) describeth the same. One He­rod a straunger, whose father called His grād­father vvas a Sextane in Apollos tē ­ple, & his father vvas brought vp amonge thieues in Idumaea. Euseb. l. 1. cap. 6. ex Aphricano. Ioseph. l. 14 antiq. ca. 2. An­tipater, came out of Idumaea, was rysen to acquaintance and fauour with the Ro­mans, partelie by his said fathers meanes, who was (as Iosephus wordes are,) a vvell monicd man, industrious, and sactious; and partelie also by his owne diligence and ambition; being of hymself, both wittie, beautiful, and of excellent rare qualities. By which cōmendatiōs, he came at length to marry the daughter of Hyrcanus kinge of Iurie, that was descended liniallie of the house of Dauid, and tribe of Iuda. And by this mariage, obteined of his father-in-law to be Gouernour of the prouince of Galilie, vnder hym. But Hyrcanus after­wardes, fallinge into the handes of the Parthyians, that caried hym into parthia: The first rysing of Herod As­colonita. Herod ranne away to Rome, and there, by the helpe and special fauour of Antonie, that ruled in company together with Octauius: he obteined to be created kinge of Iurie, without all title or interest ī the world. For that not onlie his said father­inlaw Hyrcanus was yet a lyue in Par­thia; but also his yonger brother Aristo­bulus, and three of his sonnes named An­tigonus, [Page 190] Alexander, and Aristobulus, and diuers other of the blood Royall, in Iu­rie.

Herodthen, hauing procured by thes meanes to be kinge of Iurie; procured Ioseph. l. 15 antiq. c. 9. 11. first to haue into his handes the forsaid kinge Hyrcanus, and so put hym to death; as also he brought to the same ende his yonger brother Aristobulus, together The most horrible murders, cōmitted by Herod. with all his three sonnes. He putt to death also, his owne wife Mariamnes that was kinge Hyreanus daughter, as also. Alexandra her mother; And soone after, two of his owne sonnes by the said Mariamnes, for that they were of the blood Royal of Iuda. And a litle after that againe, he put to death his third sonne na­med Lib. 17. ca. 10. Antipater. He caused to be slaine at one tyme 40. of the chiefest noble men of the tribe of Iuda. And, as Philo the Iewe Lib. 15. c. 1. writeth, (that liued at the same tyme with hym,) he putt to death all the San­hedrin, that is, the seuentie and two Sena­tours Philo li. de tempore. of the tribe of Iuda, that ruled the people. He kylled the chief of the sect of Pharisies. He burned the genealogies of all the kinges and princes, of the house of Iuda; and caused one Nicolaus Damasce­nus Ioseph. l. 14 cap. 2. an Historiographer that was his ser­uant, to draw out apetidegree for hym and his line, as though he had descended A paterne of an ambi­tiōs Tyrāt. from the auncient kinges of Iuda. He translated the highe priesthode & solde it to straungers. And finallie he so rased, dispersed, and mangled the house of Iuda; [Page 191] as no one iote of gouernment, dignitie, or principallitie remained therin. And when he had donne all this: then was Iesus, of the same house and line, borne in Bethleē, the proper Cittie of Dauid, which Dauid was the founder and first authour of Re­galitie in Iuda.

Now then, consider the prophetie of Iacob concerning the particuler tyme of The pro­phetie of Iacob, tou­ching the scepter of Iuda. Gen. 49. Christes appearāce, almost two thousand years before thes thinges fell out. Come hyther my childrē (said he,) that I may tell you the thinges vvhich are to happē in the later dayes. &c. The scepter shall not be taken from Iuda, untill he come, vvho is to be sent; and he shall be th' expectation of Nations. Which prophetie, that it was fulfilled now at Christes Na­tiuitie, when Herod had extinguished all gouernment in Iuda; no man can denie, that will acknowledge the thinges sett downe before, which are recorded by writers both of that tyme, and of the Iuishe Nation and religion. And that it neuer was fulfilled from Dauids dayes, That the scepter ne­uer failed in Iuda, vn­till Herode came. 1. Reg. 16 (who began the gouernment to the house of Iuda,) vntil this time: appeareth plain­lie by all histories and recordes, both Diuine and Prophane. For that frō Dauid, (who was the first kinge,) vnto Zede­chias, that was the last, and died in the Captiuitie of Babylon: the Scripture sheweth how all kinges descended of the 4. Reg. 29 Iere. 37. house of Iuda. And during the tyme of the captiuitie in Babylon, (which was 70 yeares;) the Iewes were alwayes per­mitted [Page 192] to chuse to them selues a gouer­nour of the house of Iuda, whom they Thalm. in tract. San­hed. cap. Dinei Mā ­monoth. Rab. Moses Egyp. in praefat. Maimonim Esd. l. 1. c. 1. 2. 3. called RESCHGALVTA. And after their deliuerie from Babylon, Zorobabel was their Captaine of the same tribe; and so others after hym, vntill ye come to the Machabies, who were both Captaines & priests; for that they were by the mothers side, of the tribe of Iuda, & by the fathers side, of the tribe of Leui, as Rabbi kimhi holdeth. And from thes men downe to Mach. l. 1. c. 2. 3. Rab. Kimhi com. in Agg. Ioseph. l. 13 & 14. anti. Hyrcanus and Aristobulus, whom Herod slew; there continued stil the same line, as Iosephus declareth. So that by this pro­phetie it is euident, that Iesus was borne at the propper tyme appointed for the Messias, whē there was neither king, nor Captaine, nor highe prieste, nor Coun­celour, nor anie one gouernour of the house and tribe of Iuda, left in Iurie.

An other prophetie ther is, no lesse euident then the former, wherin it is af­firmed, The. 4. proofe. The de­structiō of the second Temple. that the Messias shall come before the secōd Temple of Ierusalem, (that was builded by Zorobabel after the Iewes re­turne from their captiuitie in Babylon,) should be destroyed by the Romans. For 3. Reg. 6. & 7. 2. Para. 3. Euseb. in Chron. Clem. l. 1. strom. 4. Reg 25 1. Esd. 1. 3. 4. better vnderstanding wherof, it is to be noted, that the Temple of Ierusalem was builded twise: first by Salomon, which lasted about 442. yeares; and then it was burned and destroyed by Nabuchodono­sor, kinge of Babylon. Wherfore aboute seuētie yeares after, it was builded againe, by Zorobabel, who reduced the Iewes frō [Page 193] Babylon, and so it continued, vntill it was destroyed the second tyme by Titus sonne to Ve: pasian the Roman Emperour, about fortie yeares after Christs Ascen­sion. At what tyme, it had lasted from Zo­robabel, almost six hundred yeares: And from Salomon, aboue a thousande.

And as in tyme of the second building, the people of Israel were poore, and much 1. Esd. 5. & 6. The buil­ding of the second Tē ­ple, lesse gorgeous thē the first afflicted in respecte of their late longe ba­nishement, (though much assisted to this worke by the liberalitie and munificēcie of Darius kinge of Babylon:) so was the building and workeman hippe of this se­conde temple, nothing comparable, for excellēcie, to the first building of Salomō, when the Iewes were in the flower of their glorie and riches. This testifieth Ag­gaeus 1. Esd. 5. the Prophet, who was one of the builders; and he testified the same to Zo­robabel and to the rest of thos that were with hym, by Gods owne appointement, in thes wordes. The vvorde of God vvas made Agg. 2. v. 4 to Aggeus the Prophet. Tell Zorobabel the sonne of Salathiel Captaine of Juda, and Iesus the sonne of Iosedec highe prieste, and the rest of the people. VVho is there leste of you, that savv this temple in his first glorie, (before our transinigration,) & vvhat say you to this, vvhich Novv vve see? is it not in our eyes, as though it vvere not at all? that is, is it not as though it were a thinge of nothing, in cōparison of the former tem­ple, which Salomon builded?

Thus said Aggaeus by Gods commissiō, of the material building of this second [Page 194] Temple. And yet, to comfort the Iewes withall, he was commaunded presentelie in the sane chapter to say thus. Comfort thie self Zorobabel, and comfort thie self Iesu sonne of Iosedec high priest, and comfort your selues all ye Agga. 2. people of the earth, saith the Lord God of hostes: doe ye the thinges vvhich I couenanted vvith you, vvhen ye came foorth of the land of Egypt, and feare not, for that my spirit shall be among you. Thus sayeth the Lord of hostes; This he saithe for that the 3. Monar­chies issued, vvherin there vvas continuall vvarre and bloodshed. a litle time yet remaineth, vvhen I vvill moue both heauen and earth, both sea and lande, vvith all countries in the vvorld. And then shall come the DESI­RED OF ALL NATIONS; and I will fill this hovvse (or temple) vvith glorie, sayeth the Lord of hostes. Siluer is mine, and gold is mine, sayeth the Lord of hostes: great shalbe the glorie of this ast hovvse or temple, more then of the first, sayeth the Lord God of hostes. Hytherto are the wordes of God by Aggaeus, and the often repetition, of the Lord God of hostes, is to signifie the certaintie & great weight of the matter promissed.

Now consider then, that wher as God had said immediatelie before, that this se­cond temple was nothing in respect of the first, for pompe and riches of the mate­rial building, (which the olde men in the booke of Esdras did testifie, by their wee­ping, 1. Esd. 3. when then they saw this seconde, & remembred the first:) yet now God saith that, Gold and seluer is his ovvne, (as though he made no accompt of th' abundāce ther­of in the former temple, or of the want of the same, in this:) and that not with­standing [Page 195] the pouertie of this second buil­ding; yet, shall it be filled and replenished vvith glorie, and that in such sorte, as it shall farre passe in glorie, the former; and that shall bee, (as both here is expressed, and other where most plainlie,) by the comming of This vvas fulfilled vvhē Christ vvas perso­nallie, and taught in the Tēple. Luc. 1. 2. 19 Mat. 21. 26. &c. Christ into the second temple, which shalbe a greater dignitie, then anie digni­tie what soeuer was found in the first building of Salomons temple.

Concerning which point, it is to be cōsidered, that the learned Iewes, besides Prerogati­ues of the first Tēple. Rab. Sa­muel tract. Sanhed. in Thalm. Hierosol. Rab. Aba in l. dicru. the material difference of building be­fore mentioned, doe note fiue thinges of great importance to haue bene wanting in the seconde temple, which were in the first. To witt; the fire sent from heauen to burne the Holocaustes: The glorie of God (or Angels) appearing among the images of Cherubins, that stoode in the temple: The manifeste inspiration of Gods spirit 1 vpon Prophetes, (for that prophetie 2 fayled in the second temple:) The pre­sence 3 of the Arcke: And last of all, the 4 Vrim and Thumim. All which great wantes 5 and differences not withstanding, God saith, as you see, that the glorie of this se­cond temple shalbe much greater then the first, by the comminge of Christ into the same. Which thing, Malachie the prophet that lyued at the same tyme when the se­cond Malac. 3. temple was in buildinge, confirmeth yet more expresselie in thes wordes. Be­holde I send my This Christ in­terpreted of S. Iohn Baptiste. Math. 11. Angel, and he shal prepare the vvay before my face. And straight after, shal [Page 196] come to his temple, the Lord or ruler vvhom you seeke, and the MESSENGER OF THE TESTAMENT, vvhome you desyre. Beholde [...] cometh co­meth saith the Lord of hosles, and vvho ca ima­gine the day of his comming? or vvho can stande or abyde te see him? for he shalbe as a purging fire. &c.

By all which is made euidēt, that Christ must come and appeare in the seconde té­ple, before it be destroyed; (as Iesus did,) and therfore he can not be new to come, seing the laid temple was destroyed aboue 1500. year past by the Romas, as hath bene said. Which destruction and final desola­tion, was prophetied by Daniel to ensue soone after the byrth and death of Christ, in thes wordes. After sixtie and tvvo heb [...], Dan. 9. The second Temple to be destroyed present­lie after Christes Passion. Christ shalbe slaine; And a people vvith their Captaine to come, shall destroye the Cittie, and the Sanctuarie, and th' ende therof shalbe va­stitie or spoile. And after the vvarre ended, there shall ensue th' appointed desolation. Which prophetit to haue fallen out lytterallie, about fortie yeares after Iesus was put to death, when Ierusalem was destroyed, and the temple ouerthrowen by Titus; the storie of Iosephus the learned Iewe, who was a Captaine against Titus in that Ioseph de bello lu­diaco lib. 6. warre; doth manifestlie & at large declare.

AND for that we haue made mention here, of Daniels prpohetie, concerning The. 5. proofe. The 72. Hebdoma­des. the particuler tyme of Christs comming, and of his death; which confirmeth the purpose we treate so perspicuouslie, as no­thing can be said more euident: it shall [Page 197] not be amisse, to examine the same before we passe anie further. For better concey­uinge wherof, it is to be vnderstood, that this greeke worde Hebdomada, (signifying seuen,) doth sometyme importe a weeke of seuen dayes, accordinge to our commó vse; and then it is called in scripture Heb­domada Tvvoe kindes of vveekes. dierum, a weeke of dayes; as Dan. 10. v. 2. where Daniel sayeth, that he did mourne three weekes of dayes. But at other tymes, it signifieth the space of seué yeares, and is called in Scripture Hebdo­mada annorum, a weeke of yeares. As in Leuiticus wher it is said: Thou shalt number Leui. 25. vide etiam cap. 23 & alibi passim to theoseuen vveekes of years, that is, seuen tymes seuen, vvhich make fortie and Nine years.

Now then it is certaine, that Daniel in the prophetie before alleaged, where he assigneth 62. weekes to the tyme of Christs death, could not meane vveekes of dayes; for that he appointeth onlie seuen weekes, to the rebuilding of the cittie of Ierusalem; of the Temple; & of the walles aboute; which were not ended but in for­tie and nyne yeares after, as may be ga­thered Lib. 1. & 2. by the bookes of Esdras: which 49. weekes, doe make iust seuen weekes of yeares. And therfore it is certaine, that such Hebdomades of yeares are meāt here by Daniel, in all the prophetie.

First then, when th' Angel came to cō ­fort hym, and to open vnto hym secretes for the tyme to come: he said thes words. Marke my speech and vnderstand the vision. The Dan. 9. v. 23. seuentie hebdomades (or vveekes) are shortened [Page 198] (or hastened) vpon thy people, and vpon thie holie Cittie; to th' end all preuarication and sinne may take an ende, and iniquitie be blotted out, & euerlasting iustice be brought in place therof; to th' ende that visions and propheties may be fulfil­led, and the HOLIE OF HOLIES, may be an­nointed. In which wordes, it seemeth that Ierem. 25. & 29. the Angel did allude by naming seuentie, vnto the seuētie yeares of captiuitie, pro­phetied by Ieremie; after which ended, the VVhie [...] Angel nameth 70. Hebdo­mades in this place. people should be deliuered frō their tēpo­ral bondage in Babylō. And therfore Da­niel now being ī that place, & perceauing the same time to be expired; prayed to God with great instance, to fulfill his promisse made by Ieremie. Wherto th' Angel an­swered, that it should be donne. And as after the expiration of seuentie years, God was now to deliuer them, from the bodilie captiuitie of Babylon: so was he also after seuentie hebdomades more, to deliuer them from bondage of sinne and preuarication, and that by th' annointed MESSIAS which is indeede the Holie of all Holies.

This (I say) may be the reason of na­ming seuentie hebdomades, therby to al­lude to the number of the seuentie years of that Babylonical seruitude. For that immediatelie after the Angel appointeth the whole exacte nūber, to be three skore and nine hebdomades; that is, seuen to the building of the cittie and temple, & three skore and two, from that, to the death of Dan. 9. v. [...] 5. Christ, in thes wordes. Knovv thou and [Page 199] marke, that from the ende of this speech, to the tyme that Ierusalem shalbe builded, and vnto The exact number of vveekes, frō the buil­ding of the secōd Tēple to the death of Christ. 62 Christ the Captaine, there shalbe hebdomades seuē, and Hebdomades sixtie tvvo; and the streetes and vvalles (of Jerusalem) shalbe builded againe though vvith much difficultie of the tymes: and after sixtie and tvvo Hebdomades, Christ shalbe slaine. And the people that shal denie hym, shal not be his. &c. And then vnto consummation and ende, shal perseuer desolation.

Now then if we putt thes yeares to­gether, whiche are here mentioned by Daniel: that is, first the seuen Hebdoma­des, which make fortie and nyne yeares; and then the three skore and two from the restauratiō of Ierusalem, which make fower hundred thirtie and fower more: we shall fynde the whole number to be Th' accōpt of Daniels vveekes. 483. yeares. Which being begonne from the first yeare of Cyrus, as some wil, (for that he first determined the Iewes reduc­tion:) or from the second yeare of Darius, as other will, (for that he confirmed and putt the same in execution:) or from the twēteth yeare of the said Darius, for that then, he made a new edicte in the fauour of Nehemias, and sent hym into Iurie: euerie waye they will ende in the reigne of Herod and of Augustus, vnder whome Christ was borne; or in the reigne of Ty­berius Caesar, vnder whome he suffered. And by no interpretation in the world, can it be auoided, but that this tyme ap­pointed by Daniel, is now owt, aboue a thousand & fyue hūdred yeares past, whyle [Page 200] yet the temple stoode, and was not putt to desolation. And therfore of necessitie Christ must be come about that tyme, and neuer more hereafter to be looked for.

THE traditions and obseruations of th' old Iewes thē selues, doe maruelouslie The. 6. proofe. The tradi­tiōs of Ra­bines. confirme this belief of ours, for that they all did runne to this one pointe, that aboute the tyme of Augustus his reigne, (wherin Iesus was borne,) the Messias should appeare. It is often repeated in the Thalmud; that one Elias left this traditiō, that the worlde should endure six thou­sand Thalm. tract. Sādr. cap helec. & alibi. yeares; two thousand before the law of Moyses; two thousand vnder the same law; and two thousand after that, vnder the Messias. Which last two thou­sand yeares, by all computation, could not beginne much from the birth of Iesus. And the Rabbines a great while gone, complained in their Talmud, that ther Thalm. in tract. Auo­dazara. seemed to them in thos dayes, seuen hun­dred & fourtiene yeares past, since Christ by the scriptures, should haue appeared; and therefore they doe maruaile whie God so longe deferreth the same.

Another obseruation they haue vpon the wordes of Esay; paruulus natus est nobis, Esa. 9. v. 6. An obser­uatiō of the Cabalistes. a lytle childe is borne vnto vs. In which wordes, for that they finde th' Ebrue let­ter, MEM, to be shutt in the middest of a worde; (which is strange in that tongue, for that MEM is wont to be open in the middest of wordes, and shutt onlie in the ende:) they gather manie secretes. And [Page 201] amonge other, that seinge MEM signifieth six hundred years; so longe it should be Th. lm. in lib Sab­bath. & in tract San­hedrin. after Esay, vntill the tyme of Christe. Which accompt of theirs, falleth out so iust: that if you recone the yeares from Achaz kinge of Iuda, in whose tyme Esay spake thes wordes, vntil the tyme of king Esa. 7. Herode, vnder whome Christ was borne: you shall perceyue the number to faile in Mat. 2. litle or nothing.

A muche like obseruation hath Rabbi Moses the sonne of Maimon, (whom the Th' obser­uation of Rab. Mo­ses. Iewes doe holde in extreme greate reue­rence, calling hym the doctor of iustice,) in his epistle to his countrimen of Africa, concerning the tyme of Christs appea­rance. Rab. Mos. Ben. Mai­mon. ep. ad Iudaeos African. Which he thinketh to be past, ac­cordinge to the scriptures, aboue a thou­sand yeares, in his dayes: (he lyued about the yeare of Christ. 1140:) but that God de­ferreth his manifestation for their sinnes. To which purpose also apperteineth the Rab. Iosue. ben. leui. in Thal. tract. Sanhed. c. helec. tradition of one Elias, (as Rabbi Iosue reporteth it ī the Thalmud,) that the Mes­sias was to be borne in deede, (according to the scriptures,) before the destruction of the second temple; for that Esay sayeth of the Synagoge; before she vvas vvith child, Esa. 66. v. 7. she brought foorth; and before the greefe of tra­uaile came, she vvas deliuered of a man child. That is, (saith he,) before the Synagogue was afflicted and putt to desolation, by Christ hy­deth hym self in the sea. the Romans; she brought forthe the Mes­sias. But yet (sayeth he) this Messias for our sinues, doth hyde hym self for a tyme, [Page 202] in the sea and other deserte places, vntill we be worthie of his comming.

To the like effect, is th' obseruation of Th' obser­uatiō of the Talmud. Talm. tract. Sanhed. c. helec. Rab. Ioha­nan. Rab. Iuda Rab. Nehorai. &c. the Talmud it self, and of diuers Rabbines therin, concerning the wicked manners of men that should bee at Christs appea­rance vpon earth, of whom they doe pro­nounce thes wordes. The vvise men in Israel, shalbe extinguished: the learning of our Scribes and Pharisies shalbe putrisied; the scholles of Di­uinitie shalbe stevves at that tyme. Which thig Iosephus, that liued in the same age with Christ, affirmeth to be fulfilled in the time of Herod; in so much that if the Romans Ioseph. l. 20 antiq. cap. 6 & 8. & lib. 6. de bello Iud. 15. & lib. 7. c. 9. had not destroyed them; without doubt (sayeth he) either the earth would haue opened and swallowed thē doune, or els fire from heauē would haue consumed thē.

All then runneth to this ende, both by scripture, tradition, obseruation, and in­stincte The. 7. proof Forebodīg. of God hym self: that about Hero­des tyme, the true Messias should be borne. And hereof came that common Tacit. l. 21. Sueton. in vita Vesp. Ioseph. de bello Iudai. I. 7. c. 12. and publique fame, that is recorded by Tacitus, Suetonius, and Iosephus, (which was also writen in open sight, vpon the chiefest Tower of the Cittie of Ierusalē;) that out of Iurie should rise, a general Lord of th' vniuersal vvorld. Which prophetie as the Romans either contemned, or turned an other waye, applying the same after­warde to Vespasian: so the Iewes vnder­stood it of their Messias, and Herode fea­red the matter greatelie, and for that, was so watchefull to exstinguishe the line of [Page 203] Dauide as hath bene shewed.

Hereof also it did proceede, that the The. 8. proofe. The gene­ral expecta­tion of the people. Magi, or wise men of the Easte, attended so diligentelie about that tyme, to expect the Starre that Balaam had promissed at the comming of this kinge. Herehence also it was, that the whole people of Iu­rie, remained so attent at this tyme, more then euer before or sence, in expecting the Messias. Where vpon as soone as euer they heard of Ihon Baptist in the desert; they ranne vnto hym, askinge if he were Ioh. 1. Christ? As afterward also they flocked to Iesus, demaūding, art thou he vvhich is to come; or doe vve expect an other? Which wordes importe, the great expectation wherin that people remained in thos dayes. Ne­ther wanted that expectation in the chief gouernours thē selues; as may appeare, by that speech of theirs to Iesus; hovv lōge Ioh. 10. vvilt thovv kill vs (with this expectation?) if thou he Christ; tell vs plainlie.

Of which fame, expectation, and gree­die Diuers false Christes did rise in lu­ric. desire of the people, diuers deceyuers [...] occasion to call them selues the Messias, in those dayes; and the people followed them presentelie; which thing had not happened in any age before. And among other, there is named one Iudas Gaulonites, or Galilaeus (as S. Luke calleth Act. 5. Ioseph. l. 17 c. 8. & l. 18. c. 1. & 2. & l. 20. c. 2. & 6. him;) and an other Iudas, the sonne of Ezeehias, both of them verie wicked and licētious felowes. One also called Atōges, a Shepheard; and two other named Theu­das and Egyptius, most notable deceyuers. [Page 204] And aboue all, there was one, Barcozbam, who (as the Talmud saith) for thirtie years together, was receyued for the Mes­sias, Talm. tract Sanh. cap. helec. Rab. Mos. Ben. Maim. in Senten­tiis. by the Rabbines them selues, vntil at last they slewe hym, for that he was not able to deliuer them from the Romans. Which facilitie in the people, when He­rode sawe: he caused Nicolaus Damascenꝰ (as I noted before,) to deuise a petigree Nicol Da­mascenus. Ioseph. 1 14 antiq. c. 2. for hym from the auncient kinges of Iu­da: And so he, as well as other, tooke vpō hym, to be the Messias, whom-diuers carnal Iowes, that expected the Messias to be a magnificent king, (as Herod was,) would seeme to beleeue, & diuulgate abrode; and therof in the Gospell, they are thought to haue bene called, Herodiani; that is, Hero­dians Mat. 22. Marc. 3. & 12. or followers of Herod, who came to tempt Christ, with the scribes and pharisees.

Wherfore to conclude at length, this weightie pointe of the tyme of Christs The cōclusiō of this first cōsideration of the ryme. appearing; seing that about the birth of Iesus vnder Herodes reigne, there cōcur­red so many signes & argumētes together; as the general peace of the Roman Em­pire; the defection of the line and regimēt of Iuda; the open decaye of the second temple; the iust calculation of Daniels hebdomades; the attestation of Oracles; th' obseruation of Rabbines; the publique fame and expectation of all the Iewes; to­gether with the palpable experience of more then fiftien hundreth yeares past, since Iesus appeared, wherin we see the [Page 205] Iuishe people, in vaine to expect an other Messias; they being dispersed ouer all the world, without temple, law, sacrifice, Prophet, or promisse, for their redemptiō; (which neuer happened to them, vntill after Iesus death, for that in all other their banishementes, captiuities, and affli­ctions, they had some prophetie, consola­tiō, or promisse, for their deliueric:) Thes thinges all (I say) considered, and putt together: we may moste vndoubtedlie and assuredlie conclu le, that Iesus was borne at the iuste tyme appointed, and fortolde by Gods holie spirit; and con­sequentelie, that he onlie was the holie true Messias, and Saueour of the world, which vet shall better appeare by exami­nation of other thinges, that are to fol­low.

IN THE SECOND consideration there THE. 2. Conside­ration. Christ his Birthe. come to be weighed, thes pointes fol­lo ving; the Line and stocke of Iesus; his maner of conception; the place of his Birth; his Circumcision & name; his ado­ration by the Magi; his presentation in the temple; and his flight to Egypt.

FOR his Line and stocke; there was neuer 1. Iesus Lym. man denied or doubted, but that Iesus was directetie of the tribe of Iuda, & descēded lineallie by his mother, of the peculiar ho vse of Dauid, (3. Reg. 7. Psal. 30. Esa. 11. according as it was fortolde that the Messias should doe;) which is proued most clearlie, by the two genealogies and petidegrees, sett downe Mat. 1. Luc. 3. by S. Mathew and S. Luke, of the blessed [Page 206] virgins whole descent, from Dauid to Iosephe, that was of the same tribe and kinred with her. And it is confirmed by their repairinge to Bethleem; (when proclamation was made by Of this matter, vvri teth Iose­phus l. 18. c. 1. antiq. Cyrenius in Augustus name, that euerie person should repaire to the head Cittie of their tribe & familie, to be cessed for their tribute;) seing that Bethleem was the proper Cit­tie onlie of them, that were of the house and line of Dauid; for that king Dauid 1. Reg. 17 2. Reg. 2. was borne therin. And finallie, it is eui­dent by that the Scribes and Pharasies, who obrected matters of much lesse im­portance against Iesus then this, (as that he was a Carpenters sonne, therby to de­base hym for his pouertie;) yet neuer ob­iected Mat. 13. Luc. 6. they against hym, that he was not of the house of Dauid. Which they would neuer haue omitted, if they might haue done it with any colour; for that it would haue weyed more against hym, then all the rest, and would haue in one worde dispatched the whole controuersie. Nay, I adde further, that it remaineth registred in the Iewes Thalmud it self, that Jesus of Thal. tract. Sēh. c. Nig­mar had. Nazareth Crucified, vvas of the blood Royal from Zorobabel, of the house of Dauid.

FOR the maner of his conception, and 2. The maner of his con­ception. Luc. 1. of the message or annunciation made vnto his mother, by th' Angel; albeit it depende principally, vpon the relation and credite of the virgin her self, who onlie was priuie there vnto; and vpon the testimonie of Iosephe, to whom it was reueiled by [Page 207] the same Angel afterwarde: yet, hē that Mat. 1. shall consider the circumstances of the thing it self: as first, the simplicitie of both the reporters. Then, how that it is not likelie, that Iosephe being iust, (as he is described,) would haue cōcealed a thing so much against hym self, and against the lawe, if he had not some way bene assu­red of the ttuth. Thirdlie, th' innocent age of the blessed virgin, (who was not past 14. yeares olde at that tyme, as S. Augu­stine Augustin. Lib. 4. de Trin. c. 5. & l. cont. Iu­dzos c. 5. Chrysost. in cap. 1. Luc. and other aunciēt fathers doe proue by manifest argumentes:) All thes thin­ges (I saye) doe make it improbable, that she would inuent such a matter of her self. And finallie, the straunge prophetie, whiche she vttered in here Canticle of MAGNIFICAT, and which we see now fulfilled, (albeit at that tyme verie vnlik­lie;) to witt, that all generations should cal her BLESSED: Thes circumstances, he that shall consider; can not but see that the matter must needes be true.

AND as for the kinde and maner of his Natiuitie; most manifest it is by scripture, 3. The maner of Iesus natiuitie. Esa. 7. that the Messias was appointed to be borne of a virgine; for so saith Esay plain­lie; Beholde, a virgine shall conceyue, and bring foorth a sonne. And Esay appointeth this to king Achaz, for a wonderful & straūge signe from God. Which he could not haue donne in reason, if the Hebrue worde in that place, might haue signified a yonge woman onlie, (as some later Rabines will affirme;) for that it is no signe nor strange [Page 208] thinge, but verie common and ordinarie, for yonge women to conceyue and bring foorth childrē. Wherfore the Septuagint doe verie well translate it in greeke, by the proper name of Virgine, and so also did th' elder Iewes vnderstande it, as Rabbi Parthenm. Simeon well noteth. And Rabbi Moses hadarsan of singular Credit withe the Rab. Simeō Ben. Iohai in cap. 2. Gen. Iewes, vpon the wordes of the Psalme; Truth shall budde foorthe of th' earth &c. [...] thus: here Rabbi Io [...]n noteth that it is Rar Mos. [...] in [...] 14, v. 12. not saide, truth shalbe ingendred of th'earth; But, truth shall budde frorth; to signifie therby, that the Meisias, (who is meant by the worde, Truth,) shall no be begottē(as other men are) in carnal population. Thus farre Rabbi Moses; who in an other place, that is, vpon the 25. chapter of Ge­nesis, alleageth Rabbi Berachias to be of the same opinion, and to proue it out of the 109. Psalme vers. 4.

The same is proued also, by the plaine wordes of Ieremie. God hath created a nevv thinge vpon earth; A vvoman shall inuiro: (or Iere. 31. v. 22. inclose) a man. That is, she shall inclose hym in her wombe, and bring hym fourth, after a new and straunge maner, without gene­ration of man. And finallie, Rabbi Haca­dosch proueth by Cabala out of many Rab. Ha­cad. quest. 3. in E a. c. 9. places of scripture, not onlie that the mo­ther of Meisias shalbe a virgine, but also that her name shalbe Mary. All the ten Si­byls in like maner, (according as Betu­leius Betuleins in l. de car. Sibyl. setteth oute their propheties,) doe make special mention of the mother of [Page 209] Messias, that she shalbe a most pure and holie virgine; so that this matter was re­ueiled verie clearlie, both to Iewe and Gentile before it came to passe. And Cle­mens Alexandrinus writeth, that Simon Magus, to th' end he might not seeme infe­riour to Iesus, in this pointe; feigned, that Clem. in recognit. he was also borne of a virgine, as Iesus was.

THAT Bethleē, where Christ was borne, 4. The place appointed for the birth of the Messias. Mich. 5. was the peculier place preordained by God, for the birth of the Messias; the pro­phet Michaeas fort olde plainlie, when he vttered diuers ages before Christ was in­carnate, thes wordes. And thou Bethleem Ephrata, arte but a litle one (in respect) of thou­sandes in Iuda; (and yet,) shal there come foorth of thee, one that shalbe the RVLER of Israel; and his comming foorth is from the beginning, and FROM THE DAYES OF ETERNITIE. By which wordes is plainelie expressed, that albeit Bethleem were but a litle poore Towne (as in deed it was,) in comparyson of manie other in Iuda: yet therin should be borne temporallie that Gouernour of Is­rael, whose diuine birth was before the worlds foundation, and from all eterni­tie. And so doe interpret this place, both Ionathan Ben vziel the great Author of the Chaldaie paraphrase, (who died 28. yeares before Christ was borne,) and also R. Selomoh and Hacadosch in their comē ­taries vpon this place of Michaeas.

The same thing fortolde Dauid, of Ephrata, or Bethleem, (for both names [Page 210] doe signifie one thing, as appeareth by the former place of Michaeas, and Gen. 35. & 48. 1. Para. 2. Psal. 131. others,) when talking of the Messias, and being desirous to know where he should be borne: sayeth; I vvill not goe into the taberna­cle of my house, nor into my bedde; nor vvill I gyne my eyes sleepe, or rest to the temples of my head; vntill I find out the place, that is appointed for my Lord; the tabernacle (or house) for the God of Iacob. And then, the mysterie being reuei­led vnto hym; he sayeth presentely: Beholde vve haue heard of it (novv) in Ephrata (or Beth­leem:) vve haue founde it out in the fieldes This he saith for that in Da­nites tyme, Bethleem stoode nigh vnto vvoods Math. 2. of vvoode. And to shew how he reuerenced the place for that cause; he addeth imme­diatelie: vve vvill adore in the place vvher his seete haue stoode. Wherby he for prophitieth, not onlie th' adoration vsed after in that place vnto Iesus by the Magi, or three kinges of th' east: but also of all other adoratiō vsed in the same place in the me­morie of Iesus, by other deuout Christians vntill this daye. For which respect Origē sayeth, that the place of Bethleem was Orig. cont. Cels. most famous and renoumed in his dayes.

For th' Angels appearing to the shep­heardes, 5. Th' Angels singinge. in the night of the Natiuitie; there can be no more said, but the credite, honestie, and simplicitie of them, that re­ported it; and likelie it is they would ne­uer feigne a thing, that might haue bene refuted by testimonie of the sheapheards them selues, if it had bene false. 6. The name Iesus.

Of the name of IESVS, gyuen to hym in his circumcision; it was to be seene sett [Page 211] downe in a booke, that how so euer it were not scripture; yet was it extant in the worlde, before Christ was borne. I meane the fowerth booke of Esdras, which hath thes wordes in the person of God the father. Beholde the tyme shal come, vvhen the signes shall appeare that I haue tolde 4. Esd. 7. &c. And my sonne IESVS, shalbe reueiled, vvith these vvho are vvith hym &c. And after those yeares my sonne CHRIST shall dye, and th' earth shall render thos that sleepe therin. Rabi Haca­dosch also proueth by arte Cabalist, out of manie places and textes of scripture, that the Messias name at his comming, shalbe, Rab. Haca in Esa. 9. Gen. 49 & psal 71. & 95. IESVS. And among other, he addeth this reason; that as the name of hym who first brought the Iewes out of bondage into the lande of promisse, was Iesus, or Iosue, (which is al one:) so must his name be Ie­sus, Note this reason. that shall the second tyme deliuer thē from the bondage wherin they are, and restore them to their olde & aunciēt pos­session of Iurie, which is the chiefe bene­fite they expect by the Messias.

Finallie, it is not probable that the vir­gine Marie should feigne this name of her self, for that among the Iewes there were manie other names of more ho­nour and estimatiō, at that tyme; as Abra­ham, Isaac, Iacob, Moyses, and Dauid. And therfore if she would haue feigned any; it is like shee would haue taken one of thē, as soone as this, which had not bene the name of anie greate Patriarche.

THERE followeth the comming of [Page 212] the three Magi or wise men, from th' easte; 7. The coming of the three kinges. Mat. 2. of whom Cypr. ser. de Bapt. & idē Tert. l 3. cōt. Mar­cion. hillar. l. 4 de Trin. los. 12. Cyprians wordes are; it is an olde tradition of the churche, that the Magi of th' easte, vvere kinges, or rather litle Lordes of particuler places. Which is to be vnder­stood, such litle kinges, as Iosue slew thir­tie in one battaile. And it is to be noted, that S. Mathew maketh mention of the comming of thes kinges to Hierusalem, as of a knowen and publique matter, wherof all Ierusalem and Iurie was able to beare hym wituesse. For he talketh of their open comming to Ierusalem; and of their inqui­rie for the new borne king; of their speech and conference had with Herod; as also of Herodes consultation with the Scri­bes and Pharasies, about the place of the Messias birth. And finallie, he sheweth the most pittiful murder that insued of almost 14. Thou­sad, as saith the Lytur­gie of the AEthio­pians, and Calend. Gracorum. infinite infantes, in all the cir­cuite of Bethleem for this matter. Which could not be a thinge vnknowen to all Iurie, & much lesse feigned by S. Mathew, for that he should haue gyuen his aduersa­ries the greatest aduātage in the world; if hè had begunne his Ghospell with so no­torious and opē an vntruth, which might haue bene refuted by infinite persons that were yet a liue.

Epiphanius is of opinion, that thes Bpiph. hae­ret. 51. kinges arriued in Hierusalem two yeares after Christs Natiuitie; for that Herod slew all infantes of that age. But other hold more probablie, that the starre ap­peared Ammon. Alex. in [...]. vnto them, two yeares before [Page 213] Christs Natiuitie, so that they came to Bethleē, the thirtienth daye after Christs Niceph. l. 1. c. 13. birth, according as the Church doth ce­lebrat th' epiphanie. S. Basil thinketh, that Basil. ser. in nati. dom. they were learned men, and might by their learning, and art magike, (wherin those countrimen at that tyme were verie skilful;) vnderstand and feele, that the power of their heathē Godes, was great­lie deminished and broken. They might also be stirred vp with that commō brute, and general prophetie, spred ouer all th' east in those dayes, as both Suetonius Suet. in Vespas. c. 4. Ioseph. l. 7. de bel. c. 12. Num. 24. and Iosephus doe recorde; that oute of Iu­rie should come, an vniuersal Kinge ouer all the vvorld. By thes meanes (I say,) and by the prophetie of Balaam, left a nonge them from Moyses tyme, (for he was a Gētile) wherby was signified, that a starre should rise and declare a greate and mightie king in Israel; they might be induced, at the sight of this Starre, to take so longe a iour­ney as they did, towardes Iurie.

This Starre (as I haue said,) was for­told Propheties of thinges that should fall out in Bethleem. Num. 24. Psal. 71. v. 10. Iere. 31. v. 15. by Balaam a heathen Prophete, aboue 1500. yeares before it appeared. And after Balaam againe it was prophetied by Da­uid, that kinges of Arabia, Saba, and other Eastren countries, should come and adore Christ, and offer both gold and other gystes vnto hym. The murder also of those infantes of Bethleem, was presigni­fied by Icremie, in the weeping of Ra­chel, for thee slaughter of her children: Gen. 35. v. 18. which Rachell was buried in Bethleem, [Page 214] and for that cause, thos infantes, were called her children, albeit she were dead aboue 2000. yeares before they were slaine, and aboue 1500. before Ieremie wrote the prophetie. Amongest which infantes, Herode also for more assurance, slewe an infant of his owne. For that (as Philo noteth) he was descended by his Philo l. de temp. mother of the lyne of Iuda. Which cruel­tie comming to Augustus eares, he said (as Macrob. l. 2 Saturnal. cap. 4. Macrobius reporteth,) that he had rather bee Herods swyne, thē his sonne; for that, he being a Iewe, was forbidden by his Augustus speech of Herode. religion to kill his swine, though not ashamed to kill his sonne.

The same Starre wherof we speake, is mentiōned by diuers heathen writers; as Plin lib. 2. cap. 25. by Plinie, vnder the name of a Comete, (for so they termed all extraordinarie Heathē te­stimonies for the Starre vvhiche guided the vvise men. Starres;) which appeared in the later ende of Augustus daies, and was farre dif­ferent from al other, that euer appeared. And therfore, contrary to the nature of thos kind of Starres, it was adiudged by the whole college of Southsaiers, to por­tend vniuersal good vnto the earth; and for that cause, had an image of metal ere­cted to it in Rome, and (as Plinies wordes are,) Is Cometa vnus, toto orbe colitur: that only Comete, is worshipped throughout the whole world.

Origine also, writeth of one Chaere­mon Origen. cōt Celsum. a Stoike, that was much moued with the consideratiō of this starre; & for that after the appearance therof, he percey­ued [Page 215] the power of his Godes, decayed; toke a iourney into Iury, (in company of other Astronomers,) to informe hym self fur­ther of the matter. Wherunto Chalcidius, Chalcid. apud Mar­sil. Ficin. tract. de stella. Mag. a Platonike doth adde, that the Chaldaean Astronomers did gather by contemplatiō of this Starre, that some God discended from heauen to the benefit of mankinde. And finally, the Sibyls talking of the cō ­ming Sybil. Sa­mia apud Betul. of Christ; affirmed plainly; Rutilans cum sydus monstrabit; a blasing Starre shall declare his comming. Which prophetie Virgile the Poet hauing read in Augustus tyme, and soone after hauing seene the same fulfilled: applied it (as I shewed be­fore of al the rest,) to the flattering of Cae­sar, and therfore he saieth in the place be­fore alleaged.

Ecce Dionaei, processit Caesaris astrum. Eglog. 4.

‘Beholde the Starre of Caesar (descen­ded of Venus,) hathe now appeared;’ which Starre in deede, was the Starre of Caesars Lord and Mayster.

AFTER fortie daies past ouer, S. Luke Luc. 12. reporteth; how Iesus by his mother was presented in the temple of Ierusalem; and 7. The pre­sentation of Iesus in Hierusalē. there withall recounteth two straunge thinges that happened at the same time: to witte; that two graue and reuerend persons, Simeō, surnamed Iust; and Anna, the Prophetesse; (both of singuler sanctity amongst the Iewes;) cōmig into the Tem­ple, at the very time, when Iesus was there in his mothers armes: tooke notice of him, and acknowledged him publiquely [Page 216] for the Messias and Saue our of the world. Fortelling also, by the spirit of prophetie, diuers particuler thinges that were to ensue, both to Christ and Christians, and especially to his mother the blessed Vir­gin. Which thinges being published at that time, & confirmed afterward by the euent: doe well declare, that this narra­tion of S. Luke, could not be forged; as doe also the number of particuler circum­stances set doune about the time, place, & persones, most notoriouslie knowen to al Lerusalem. For, as for Anna, she had liued from her youth vntil four skore yeares of Anna the prophetisse. Simeon. age in the temple; & therby was knowen to the most parte of Iurie. And as for Si­meon, he was the scholler of the most fa­mous. HILLEL, and cōdisciple to Ionathan Thal. tract. pitkei Auoth. maker of the [...] paraphase, of whō I spoke before; and the Iewes Thalmud confesseth, that by the death of thes two Thal. tract. Ioma cap. Tereph. Eccalpi. mē (but especially of Simeon,) failled the spirit of the great Synagogue, called San­hedria; which after the captiuity of Baby­lō, vntil Herods time, supplied (in a sorte) the spirit of prophetie, that was expresly in Israel before the said captiuity.

OF CHRISTS flight into Egypt for feare of Herod, S. Luke well noteth, that 9. Christs flight in­to Egypt. Luc. 2. Osee 11. it was prophetied by Osee longe before; that God vvould call his sonne oute of Egypt. And the prophet Esay describeth the same very particulerlie, when he sayeth; Behold, our Lord Iehoua, shall ascende vp, (or ride) vpō a light cloude; (which was his flesh or huma­nitie;) [Page 217] Esa. 19. and shal goe dovvne into Egypt; and all th' idoles of Egypt, shall shake at his presence. Which later pointe, Eusebius sheweth, Euseb. li. 6. dem. c. 20. & l. 9. c. 2. 3. 4. that it was fulfilled most euidentlie, in the sight of all the worlde; for that no Nation came to Christian religion with so greate celeritie, or with so greate fer­uour, as did th' Egyptians; who threw downe their Idoles before any other hea­then Nation. And as they had bene the The beni­fite that Egypt rec­eaued by Christes flight vnto it. first in idolatrie to other countries: so were they the first, (by Christes cōminge vnto them,) that afterwarde gaue exam­ple of true returne to their Creatour. It followeth in Esay: And I vvil gyue vp Egypt into the handes of cruel Lordes; and a Potēt kinge shall take dominion ouer them. Which was fulfilled aboute the verie time wherin Christ was to come. For that then, after manie spoiles and cruelties excercised vpon Egypt by the Roman Lordes and Princes, Pompey, Caesar, Antonie, and others: in th' ende, Cleopatra their Qiene, (that was the last of all the bloode and lyne of the Ptolomces,) was inforced to slea her selfe; and so Augustus th' Empe­rour, tooke possession of all Egypte, and subiected it as a prouince, to the Romans Empire.

But consider you, how Esay concludeth the matter, after all thes temporal afflic­tions, threatened against Egypt; and con­fesse, that suche aduersitie, is no signe of Gods disfauour to them who receaue it. For thus sayeth God, after all his comina­tions. [Page 218] In that day, there shalbe an Aulter of Ie­houa in the middest of Egypt; they shall crie to God in their tribulation, and he shal send them a SAVEOVR &c. Blessing shalbe in the middest of that lande, to vvhome our Lord God of hostes hath gyuen his benediction, saying; Blessed is my people of Egypt. And here we make an ende of our second consideration.

IN THE THIRD PLACE, there cōmeth to be considered, (according to our for­mer THE. 3. Conside­ration. diuision,) the life; conuersation, doc­trine, and miracles of Iesus. And first, tou­ching THE LIFE & Actions of Iesus. things done by hym after his cō ­minge out of Egypt, (whiche might be about the sixt or seuēth yeare of his age,) vntil his Baptisme by S. Iohn, (whiche was the 30.) there is litle recorded, either in Prophane or Ecclesiastical wri­ters. For that, as S. Iustin, S. Chrysostome, Iust. in Tri­pho. Chrys. in Iohan. Aug. l. 4. de Trinit. c. 5. S. Augustine, and others doe write; he be­stowed that time in the common exerci­ses and labours of mans life; therby to shew hymself trueman, and giue demon­stration how much he detested idlenes.

OF S. Iohn Baptist, all Hebrue writers of that time doe make mention, with ex­ceeding 1. Of S. Iolm Baptiste. praise and admiration of his ho­lines; especially Iosephus, that liued īme­diately after Christs dayes, sayeth; hewas, Vir optimus; Iudaeos excitans ad virtutum stu­dia. Ioseph. l. 18 antiq. ca. 7. A most excellent man, stirring vp the Iewes to the exercise of vertue. He ad­deth also, that partly for feare of the great concourse of people, which flocked vnto hym; and partly by the sollicitation [Page 219] of Herodias, cōcubine and brothers wife to Herode Antipas, the great Herodes sonne; (for whos cause he had turned of his owne wife, daughter of Areta king of the Arabians:) he was apprehended, and imprisoned in the Castle of Acherun, and therin soone after, put to death. Which murther, Ioseph esteemed to be the cause of all the miserie whiche ensued after­ward to Herode and his whole familie.

Of this man, it was writen by Malachie the prophet: Beholde, I send my messenger (or Malac. 31 Angel) before me; and he shal prepare the vvay before my face: and presently shal come to his Temple, the RVLER vvhom you seeke, and the MESSENGER OF THE TESTAMENT, vvhich you desire. Which prophetie was fulfilled most euidently, when vpon the preaching of S. Iohns be­hauiour to­vvardes Christ. S. Iohn, Christ came vnto hym: and albeit S. Iohn had neuer sene hym before; yet he acknowledged hym for the Messias, in the presence of infinite people; and his acknowledgment was confirmed by the visible descending of a doue & voyce frō heauen, in the sight and hearing of all the Math. 3. Marc. 1. Luc. 3. people present; accordinge as three of our Euangelistes doe reporte. Which they would neuer haue presumed to doe; had not the matter bene most euident, & with­out al compasse of denial or cōtradiction.

And truly, no one thing in al this sto­rie of Iesus life, doth more establish the certaintie of his being the true Messias; then that Iohn Baptiste, (whos wis­dome, learning, vertue, and rare sanctitie, [Page 220] is confessed and recorded by the writings of al our aduersaries:) should refuse the honour of Messias offred to hym self, and lay it vpō Iesus: as also, should direct thos disciples that depended of hym, to the only folowing and embrasing of Iesus doctrine. Which is most euidētly prooued that he did; for that fo so many folowers and disciples as hym self had; no one ap­peared euer after, that was not a Christiā.

WHEN Iesus was baptised, he beganne to preache; & his whole doctrine was di­rected 2. The prea­ching and doctrine of Iesus. Deut. 6. Met. 2. to the manifestation of his Fathers will, and amendment of mans life. It ten­ded all, to this one ground and principle: thou shalt loue thy Lord, vvith all thy soule; and thy neyghbour as thy self. It was plaine, easie, perspicuous, and euidēt, though it treated of most high mysteries. It had nether pōpe nor pride of Rhetorical wordes, nor flat­tering Heathen doctrine. of mans wickednes, as the doctrine of manie Philosophers had. Neither con­sisted it, of vnpro ficable externall cere­monies, Iuishe ce­remonies. (is the later obseruations of the Iewishe laye did;) nor was it fraught with carnalitie and spirit of this world; as the Turkishe Alcoran, and other secta­ries Turkish Alcoran. doctrine is. But all was simplicitie, all was spirit, all was trueth, all was hone­stie, all was humilitie, all was charitie. The cōpa­rison of Christs lavv vvith that of Moyses. Mat. 5.

It tooke awaye or disanulled, no one perfecte or spirituall point of Moyses lawe; but rather reuiued, interpreted, ful­filled, and made perfect the same For wheras that commannded external ob­seruance, [Page 221] this added also, internall obe­dience. Whereas that said, loue your friē ­des; this adioyned, loue also your enemies. Wheras that commaunded, we should not kill; this further commaundeth, to speake no angrie wordes. Wheras that prohibe­ted to committ actual adulterie; this al­so forbiddeth to couet in minde. Wheras that said, take no interest or vsurie of a Iewe that is thy coūtrie-man; this saieth, take it of no man what soeuer. Wheras that accoumpted euerie Iewe only to be thy neyghbour; this teacheth euery per­son liuing to be thy brother. Wheras that taught thee, to offer vp a calse or a sheepe, or an oxe, for thy finnes; this instructeth thee, to offer vp a contrite harte, in the blood of hym that died for all, with a firme purpose of amendement of life. And finallie, this doctrine tendeth whollie, to Th' effect of Christs doctrine. the true, sincere, & perfect seruice of God thy Lord, that made and redeemed thee: to th' exaltatiō of his onlie name, power, goodnes, and glorie: to the depression of mans pride, by discouering his miserie: to the contempt of this world, and vaine pompe therof: to the mortification and subdueing of our sensuall appetit: to the true loue and vnfeigned charitie of our neighbour: to the stirring vp of our spirit to celestiall cogitations: to peace of con­science, tranquilitie of mynde, puritie of bodie, consolation of our soule. And in one word, to reduce mankvnd againe to a certaine estate of innocencie, simplicitie, [Page 222] and Angelicall sanctitie vpon earth, with his eye fixed onlie, in th' eternall inhere­taunce of Gods kingdome in heauen.

THIS was the doctrine deliuered by Iesus; which is the same, that Gods Pro­phets fortolde, should be deliuered by the Messias. And as for his life and conuersa­tion, 3. The life & conuersatiō of Iesus. by the testimony of his greatest ad­uersaries, it was more admirable, then his doctrine; his life being a most liuely table, wherin the perfection of al his doctrine was expressed. A man of such grauitie; as neuer in his life he was noted to laugh: of such humilitie; as being the sonne, of God, he scarse vsed in this world, the di­gnitie of a seruāt: of such sweet and mylde behauiour; as al the iniuries of his enne­mies, neuer wreested from him one angry word. Finally, he was such an one, as he was described by Esaie, so many ages be­fore he was borne, in thes wordes: he shal not crye nor contend, nor shal any nan heare his Esa. 42. voice in the streete: he shal not crush a broken reade, nor tread out a litle flaxe that lieth smoking on the grounde. And an other Prophet, not long after hym, brake foorth into, this speech, vpō consideratiō of the behaueour Zach. 9. that should be in the Messias; Reioyse thou daughter of Sion; trjumphe thou daughter of Ieru­salem; for beholde, thy king shal come vnto the, thy iust sauiour: he is poore and humble, &c. And as thes Prophets did foretel the vertue & sanctetie of the Messias: so the deuils thē selues could not but confesse the same, to haue bene fulfilled in the person of Ie­sus; [Page 223] as is most euident by the testimony of Porphyrie, a professed enemie of the Chri­stian name. Who after consideration of diuers Oracles vttered by his Idoles, tou­ching Iesus: he breaketh into this con­fession. It is exceeding vvonderful, vvhat testi­monie Porphyr. li. de laud. Philos. the Gods doe gyue of the singuler pietie and sanctitie of Iesus; for vvhich they auovvch hym revvarded vvith īmortalitie: but yet thes Christiās are deceyued, in calling him God. Thus muche Ioseph. l. 18 antiq. c. 7. writeth Porphyrie. And last of al, Iosephꝰ the Iewe, that was borne imediatlie after hym, writeth of hym thus. Ther vvas at this tyme one Iesus, a vvise man, if it be laufull to cal hym a man; a vvorker of most vvonderful mira­cles, and a Maister and teacher of al such men, as vvillingly vvere content to embrase the truth.

IN WHICH testimonie of Iosephus, we 4. Of Iesus Miracles. see mention also of Iesus miracles, which is the next thing wherof we are to con­sider. And as Iosephus in this place, being a Iewe, beareth witnes that Iesus per­formed many straunge miracles: so most apparantly, and according to the inter­pretation of Iosephus in this place, were the same miracles fortolde by the Pro­phetes of God, that they should be done by the true Messias. So, Esaie in his 35. Predictions of the Mes­sias Mira­cles. chapter describeth at large, how the Mes­sias at his coming, shal declare his com­mission by gyuing sight to the blind, hea­ring to the deafe, speech to the dombe, & agilitie of body to the Lame & Cripplē. And that which is more maruailous; God reuealed this point very particularly to [Page 224] the Gentiles by the Sibyles, among who one of them wrote thus of Christ to come, as Lactantius recordeth. He shal doe al by his Lact. I 4. di­uina. Instit. cap. 15. only vvord: he shal cure al infirmities; he shal raise the dead; he shal make the lame to runne & skippe; the deafe shal heare; the blind shal see, & the dombe speake. In fiue loaues and tvvo fishes, fiue thousand persons shalve satisfied: and the fragmentes shal fil tvvelue baskets, to the hope of many. He shal commande the vvindes, and vvalke vpō the furious sea, vvith his feete of peace. And after diuers other greeke verses to this purpose, she cōcludeth in thes wordes: Mē shal saie, that I am a madde and lying Prophe­tesse; but vvhen at thes things shal come to passe: then remember mee; for then shal no man say more, that I vvas a liar, but rather the Prophet of the great Gad.

To thes predictions of Prophetes in Iurie, and among the Gentiles, doe agree the Doctours of the Iewes them selues, in many places of their Thalmud: to Thal. tract. Beracoth. ca. Merma­thas Colin. witte; that the Messias shalbe most won­derful in working miracles. And in their publicke commentarie vpon Ecclesiastes, they haue thes wordes. All the former mira­cles Misdrasch Coheleth. cap. 1. of Prophetes and Saintes, shalbe nothing to the miracles of the Messias, vvhen he cōmeth. And thus much of the fortelling of Christes miracles. But now for the fulfil­linge therof in Iesus; that is, how thes predictions were perfourmed in the stu­pendious workes and actions of our Sa­ueour: ther is no difficultie. For that be­sides the former testimonie of Iosephus, [Page 225] (which were sufficient in this case;) the The confes­sion of Iesus miracles by his enimies. Thalm. in tract. Auo­da. Zara. Misdrasch, Coheleth. Alcoran. Azoar. 1. 4. 11. 13. Iewes them selues, doe graunt & recorde Iesus miracles in diuers treatises of their Tha'mud: yea, they make mentiō of many wonderful thinges which Iesus did, that are not writen by our Euangelistes. The same doth Mahomet in his Alcorane; affirming, Iesus the sonne of Marie, to haue bene a great prophet; and to haue wrought his miracles by the only power and spirit of God: and that hym self was sent to confirme Iesus doctrine, sauing only in the point of his godhead; wherin he sayeth, that Iesus went to farre, and had a checke for the same at Gods hand, when he returned to heauen.

Thus much doe thes enimies confesse of Iesus miracles. Which, as it is much, cō ­ming frō such witnesses: so if they would either deny, or dissemble the same; they might be proued agaist thē by most euidēt reasōs; especiallie in two pointes, wherin ther can be no probablitie of denial.

The first is, the calling and retaining of his apostles and other followers, The cal­ling of the Apostles. (wherof Iosephus also in the place be­fore alleaged, maketh mention, as of a great miracle;) who were of diuers cal­linges, states, conditions, trades, and oc­cupations Iosep. li. 18. antiq. c. 4 in the world. And yet all, vpon the suddaine, lefte both father, mother, wife, children, and other temporal respe­ctes; and followed hym, who had nothing to gyue or promisse them in this world. A man, that neuer spake them fayre, nor [Page 226] vttered doctrine, that was not repugnant to the sensualitie of this life, as may ap­peare by their owne writinges & testimo­nies of hym. A mā, that was conténed by the better sorte, as then it might seeme; that is, by the wise and learned of that countrie; & especiallie misliked by them, that were in gouernment, as a dangerous and troublesome man to the state. One, that had neither friendes in the world to beare hym out, nor house to put his head in. And yet, not withstanding all this, that worldlie men and women, and some such also, as were great sinners, and loose liuers before, should leaue all their A greate Miracle. worldlie hope, staye, and condition, to follow such a man, with so great incon­ueniēces, losses, daungers, and disfauours as they did; and should cōtinue with hym in all his afflictions, and be content to die and lose their liues; rather then forsake hym, or abandone his seruice; this (I saye) is such a miracle, as neuer in the world fell out the lyke, and must needes be graū ­ted by th' enimie, to be supernatural. The mira­culous facts of Ièsus.

The second point is of external thinges & factes donne by Iesus, aboue all power of humane abilitie, in the sight & know­ledge of all the Iewes; which factes were published by our Euangelistes, and espe­ciallie by S. Mathew, in th' Hebrue ton­gue, while yet the persons were aliue vpon whom they were wroughte, or infi­nite other that might be witnesses therof. As for example; the raising of Lazarus in 1 [Page 227] Bethania, that was a village, but a mile or Ioh. 11. two distant from Hierusalem; at whose death and burial, (being a Gentleman) manie Scribes and Pharysies must needes be present, (according to the Iuishe cu­stome Ioseph. l. 17 antiq. c. 11. at that tyme reported by Iosephꝰ;) and they sawe hym bothe disceassed, in­terred, and the funeral feaste obserued for hym; as also raised againe by Iesus after fower dayes of his burial. With whom they did both eate and drinke, and con­uerse after his returne to life, and euerie daye might beholde hym walking in the streetes of Hierusalem. This storie (I saye) how could it be feigned?

So in like manner the raising of the 2 Archisinagogues daughter, whose name Math. 9. Marc. 5. is affirmed to be Iairus, with diuers other circumstances that doe make the thinge most notorious. The raysing of the wy­dows sōne, before the gare of the Citie of 3 Naim., in the presence of all the people Luc. 7. that bare the Corps, and stoode about it. The healing of the Cripple in Hierusalé, 4 that had layé 38. yeares lame, at the Pooles syde or bathe, called Probatica: which mira Ioh. 5. cle was donne also in the sight of almost infinite people. The casting out of a legiō 5 of deuils, from a man that for manie years together, was knowen to liue possessed in the mountaynes; which deuills by pe­culier licence, obtained of Iesus to enter into a heard of Swyne, & so presentelie; caried two thousand of them awaye into Mat. 8. Marc. 5. the sea and drowned them. Wherupon [Page 228] the whole countrie about of the people called, Gerasines, being striken with feare vpon sight of the fact: besought Iesus most humblie, to departe from their borders. The feeding & filling of more then 5000 6 men, besides women and children, with Mar. 14. Luc. 9. fiue barlie loues and two fishes onlie. The turning of water into wine, at the ma­riage 7 of Cana, in the presence of all the Guestes. The healing of hym by a word 8 onlie, that had an incurable dropsie; and Luc. 14. this at the table of a principal Pharisie, and in the sight of all that satt at dinner with hym.

Thes (I saye,) and diuers other such mi­racles, which were donne in the presence and sight of so infinite people, and recor­ded by our Euangelistes at such tyme, whē manie desyred to discredit the same, and might haue donne easelie, by manie wit­nesses and authoritie, if anie parte therof had bene subiect to calumniation: can not in reason or probabilitie, be doubted of. And therfore I must conclude, that seing thes thinges are aboue all power of hu­mane The cōclu­sion of this cōsideratiō. nature, and could not be donne, but by the fingar and vertue of God hym self: considering also, that it is impossible, that God should assiste, or gyue testimonie to falshood: it must needes insue, that all was true and sincere, which Iesus affirmed; & consequentelie, seing he affirmed hym self to be the sonne of God, and the true Mes­sias: it must needes follow by thes mira­cles, that he was so in deede; which is the [Page 229] ground of that speech of his, to the faith­lesse Pharysies, if you vvill not beleeue my Ioh. 10. vvordes, beleeue my deedes. And thus much of Iesus life, doctrine, conuersation, and mi­racles.

THERE REMAINETH now onlie, the THE. 4. Conside­ration. sowerth and last consideration of this se­ction; which is, the passion, resurrection, and ascension of Iesus. And aboute his pas­sion, THE Passiō and Resur­rection. there is litle or no controuersie; for that all his enimies doe agree & graunte, that he was betrayed by his owne disci­ple; apprehended, afflicted, and deliuered vp by the Iewes; and finallie putt to death vpō a Crosse, by the Gentiles. The testimo­nie of Iosephus may suffice for all herein. whose wordes are; that the principal Ievves Ioseph. l. 18. antiq. c. 4. ofbis countrie, hauing accused and deliuered ouer Iesus to Pilat, (that vvas Gouernour of Iurie for the Roman Emperour;) he adiudged hym to the Crosse. The same doe all other Iewes & Gentiles recorde; and in this they take great offence and scandale, that we should attribute diuinitie, vnto a man that had suffred on the Crosse.

But if we shew, that this was th' eter­nal preordination and appointement of God, for sauing of mankinde; and that the same was fortolde both to Iewe & Gen­tile from the beginning; and so vnder­stood also, by the Iuishe Doctors of elder tymes: then euerie reasonnable man (I trow) will remaine satisfied, and preferre Gods diuine wisdome, before mās follie.

First then, consider, that when Christ [Page 230] had ended his preaching, and wrought so Christes as­cendinge to Hierusalē to receaue his passion. Math. 20. & Marc. 8. Mat. 21. manie miracles as seemed sufficient to his eternal wisdome; and when the tyme was come preordained for his passion, (wher­of he tolde publiquelie his disciples be­fore;) he went vp to Hierusalem of pur­pose, to receyue his death; and made a so­lemne entrie into that Citie vpon an asse; which was prophetied of hym by Zacha­rie manie yeares before. Reioyce daughter of Zach. 9. Sion. Bcholde thie I VST KING & SAVEOVR shall come vnto thec vpon an asse.

And after his abode some dayes in that place; he was betrayed and solde by his Mat. 10. & 16. Psal. 40. 54. 108. owne disciple, as Dauid beforehande in manie places had foretolde should come to passe. Then folowed his apprehension and most seruile abusage by the Iewes, wher of it was foreprophitied in his per­son by Esay: I gaue my bodie to them that beate Esa. 50. it; and my cheekes to them that bussited the same. I did not turne my self avvay from them that re­proched mee; nor yet from them that did spitte in my sace.

After this barbarous intreatie by the Iewes; they deliuered hym ouer to Pilat a Gentile, and neuer ceased to solicite and pursue their vnquenshable hatred The bar­barous abu­sage of Ie­sus fortolde by prophe­tie. against him, vntil they sawe him on the Crosse. Where also he was vsed in the highest degree, of spiteful dealīg. Wherof the foresaid Dauid, made mention longe before, in the person of the Messias, when he said: they pearsed my handes and seete; they Psal. 21. deuided among them my apparaile; and vpon my [Page 231] (vpper) Garmente they did caste lottes. And aganie, of another crueltie he cōplaineth saing: they gaue me Gaule to eate, and in my [...] they refreshed me vvith vinegar.

And finallie, that Christ should die for Christes death most plainlie for­tolde. the sinnes of mankind, ys a common prin­ciple bothe prefygured and foretolde throughout all the olde scripture. Prefi­gured; by the sacrifice of Isaac: by the rai­sing vp of the Brasen Serpent; and by all Gen. 21. 22. other sacrifices that were in that lawe. Fortolde; not onely by the scriptures be­fore Num. 21. aleadged, but also must plainely by Daniel, who was tolde by an Angel, that after a certaine time, by him there apoin­ted; vngetur sanctus senctorum. ‘The Saint of Saintes shalbe anointed, & occidetur Chri­stus; Dan. 9. this anointed Saint or Christ, shalbe put to death.’Zacharie also about the same time, doth not onely fortel his death; but also the kinde therof, and from what peo­ple he should receyue the same: for thus he saith in the person of Christ him self. The Zach. 12. inhabitantes of Icrusalem at that daye shal looke vpon me, vvhom they haue Crucisied.

But if ye will reade the whole storie of Christs passion set downe at large, The most vvonderful predictiō of Christ his passion by Esay. Esa. 17. 600 yeares before it fel out: I referre you to a narration of Esay, who to signifie the straungnes of the case, begineth with this preface: vvho vvill gyue credit to that vve shal reporte? &c. And then after a litle, he goeth on in thes wordes. He shall mount vp as a tvvigge from a drie earth. He hath no fourme or beautie vpon him. VVe beheld him, and ther [Page 232] vvas no countenance in him; vve savve him the Christes deformitie vpon the Crosse. most contemtible and dispised man in the vvorld.

A man full of paines, and experienced in infir­mitie. His countenance vvas obscure and despica­ble, and vve made no accompt of him. Truly, he tooke vpon him self our greefes, and did beare our paines. VVe accompted him as a leaper; & as a mā stricken and punished by God. But he vvas vvounded for our iniquities, and crushed in pea­ces Christ ap­pointed to die for our synnes. for our vvickednes. The discipline (or cor­rection) of our peace lieth vpon him: and by his vvoundes, vve are made vvhole. VVe haue all erred, & gone astraye, like sheepe, euery man after his ovvne vvayes; and God hath layde vpon him, the iniquitie of vs all. He vvas offred vp for vs, because he vvould soe; he shalbe led le to his slaughter, as a sheepe; and as a Lambe he shalbe silent before his Shearours.

For the sinnes of my people, haue I stricke thyn, saith God. He hath donne no iniquitie; neither vvas there decepte founde in his mouth. Yet vvould our Lord crush hym in infirmitie. But if Th' increa­se of Christs Kingdome after his resurrectiō. he shal gyue his life for sinne: then shal he see a long seede (or generation,) and the vvill of our Lord shalbe derected in his hād. And for so much, as his soule hath susteined labour: it shal see and be filled. And this MY IVST SERVANT, That is, in makinge hym selfe knovvē, or reucilinge the knovv­ledge of hym self, to the vvorld. in his knovvledge, shal Iustifie many, and beare their iniquities. And I vvil allotte vnto hym verie many people, and he shal deuide the spoiles of the stoute, for that he hath deliuered his soule vnto death, and vvas accompted among the vvicked, & prayed for his transgressours.

Thus particularlie (as ye see) was the death and Passion of Christ foretolde by [Page 233] the Prophettes of Israel, to that Nation. [...] Now heare ye the prophetie of Sibylla, if ye please, wherin she foreshewed the same to the Gētiles. Thes are her wordes set downe by Lactātius. He shal appeare mi­serable, Ignominious, and descurmed; to the [...] [...] may giue hope vnto the miserable. Aftervvard he shall come into the handes of most vvicked [...] faithlesse men: they shal busset hym vvith their sacrilegious fistes, and shal spitte vpo hym vvith there vncleane mouthes. He shal yeelde his inno­cent backe to the vvhippe, and shal say nothing vvhile he receyueth the stripes, to th end he may speake to those that are deade. He shal [...] Crovvne of thornes; and they shal giue hym Gaule to eate, and vinegar to drinke. And this shalbe the hospitalitie he shal finde amonge them. What thinge can bee more plainly described then this?

Neither doe the Auncient Rabbines and teachers among the Iewes, dessent from this. For that in their Talmud, that The cōsent of Rabynes Thal. tract. Saphed. c. helec. Mis­drasch. Ruth. Rab. Ioseph. in I. Siph. Rab. Iacob & R. Hanina in cap helec. was gathered aboue 1200. yeares gone; the plaine sentēce of diuers are sette downe, that their Messias at his comming, shal be put to death. And as for Rabbi Ionathan Authour of the Chaldaie paraphrase, who died a litle before Christ was borne; he applieth the whole narration of Esay be­fore recited, (as needes he must) to the murder of the Messias, by the Iewe. Whereupon, RabbiSimeon that liked the Fsay. [...]. Rab. Simeō Ben. Iohai l. b. de spc. next age after, writeth thes wordes fo­lowing. VVee be to the men of Israel, [...] that they shal slea the Messias. God shal send his sonne [Page 234] in mans fleshe to vvashe them, and they shal murder hym. Wherto agreeth Rabbi Ha­darsan Rab. Ha­dars. in Dan. and others, and doe proue further out of the forealleadged prophetie of Daniel, Chap. 9. vers. 27. that after Messias shal haue preached halfe seuen yeares, he shalbe slaine. For that Daniel saith, in halfe Dan. 9. v. 27. of seuen yeares, the Hoste & Sacrifice shal cease. Vpon which wordes they comment thus: three yeares and a halfe, shal the presence of God in flesh crie and preach vpon the Mounte Oliuet, and then shal he be slaine. Which wordes the Iewes ordinarie commentarie vpon the Misdrasch Tehilim. Psalmes, doth interpret to be meante of Christs preaching three years & a halfe, before his passion. Which disagreeth ve­rie litle or nothing from the accompte of vs Christians, and of our Euangelistes.

And so we see by all that hitherto hath Of the Mi­racles that fell out in Christ his death and Passion. bene said, that the verie particulers of Christes whole death and Passion, were foretolde most plainlie both to Iewe and Gentile, and acknowledged also by the auncient Doctours of the Iewish nation, before th' effectuatiō therof came to passe. And Sibylla addeth further two particu­ler miracles, that should fall out in the said Passion of the Messias: to witt; that the Lactā. li. 4. Diuin in­stit. cap. 19. veil of the Ievves Temple should breake in tvvo, and that at middaye, there should be darkenes for three houres, ouer all the vvorld. Which thing to haue bene fulfilled at the death of Ie­sus, not onelie S. Mathew doth assure vs Mat. 17. in his Gospell: but also Eusebius affirmeth, that he had reade the same, worde for [Page 235] worde recorded in diuers heathē writers. Euseb. in Chron. An. Domi. 3. 2. Phleg. Trallian. Li. 14. Chron. An. 4. Olim. 202. And amongest other he citeth one Phlegō, an exacte Chronicler, that reporteth the same in the 4. yeare of the 202. Olympias; which agreeth iust with the 18. yeare of Tyberius reigne, wherin our Saueour suf­fered. And he goeth so nighe, as to name the very houres of the daye, which our Euangelistes doe. See Orig. cont. Cels. l. 6. & Suid. in verbo Ie­sus. & Tere. in Apolog. AEsculus also an olde Astronomer, doth confirme the same, and prooueth moreouer, by the situation and constitution of the Sunne and Moone at that tyme, that no Eclipse could then be naturally. Which thing in like manner, Dionysius Areopagita did obserue in the Dionys. Areop. in cp. verie daye of Christs Passion, being at that tyme but 25. yeares olde, and yet well stud­died in Astronomie, as hym self testifieth. And finallie, Lucianus a learned priest of Lucian. praesb. apud. Euseb. Antioche, was accustumed to prouoke the Gentiles to their owne comentaries and stories, for recorde and testimony of those thinges.

Ther ensueth now, for ending and confirmation of al that hath bene said and Of Iesus resurrec­tion. prooued before, to adde a worde or two, of Iesus Resurrection. Which point, as of al other it is of most importance: so was it most exactly fortolde both to Iewe and Gentile, and promised by Christ him self in al his speeches, while he was vpon earth. And among the Iewes, it was assu­red by al the propheties before recited, which do promisse so great aboundāce of glorye, ioye, and triumphe, to Christes. [Page 236] church after his passion. Which neuer possibly could be fulfilled; onles he had risen from dearh againe. And therfore the said Resurrectiō was prefigured in Ionas, Ionas. 2. together with the time of his abode in the Sepulcher. It was also expressle for­shewed by Dauid, affirming, that God vvould Psal. 15. not permit his holy one, to see corruption. And after him againe, more plainely by Osee; Osee 6. he shal quicked vs againe after tvvo daies: in the third day he shal raise vs, and vve shal liue in his sight. And to the Gentiles, Sibyllaieft wri­ten, Lact. lib. 4. Inst. Diuin. cap. 19. not farre from the same time: he shal ende the necessitie of death, by three daies sleepe: and then returning from death to light againe, he shal be the first, that shal shevv the beginning of Resurrection to his chosen: for that by conquering death, he shal bring vs life.

Thus much was promissed by Prophets, before Christs appearance. And Iesus to comfort his Disciples and folowers, rei­terated Mat. 12. 16. 17. 20. Mar. 8. 9. 10. Luc. 11. 18. Iohan. 2. this promisse againe of him self in many speeches, albeit oftentimes his mea­ning was not perceaued. Which promisse of returne from death, if it had bene made for some long time to come, (as Maho­met promissed his Sarasins after 800. yeares to reuisite them againe;) albeit the per­formance were neuer meante: yet might Mahom. in Alcor. Azoar. 17. the salshode lurke in the length of time. But Iesus, assuring all men, that he would rise againe, within three daies: it can not be imagined, but that he sincerely purpo­sed to performe his promisse, for that otherwise, the fraude must soone haue bene [Page 237] discouered. Now then, let vs cōsider what maner of performance Iesus made hereof.

And first the persōs most interessed in the The appea­rīgs vvhich Iesus made after his re­surrection. matter, as they whose total hope, staye, refuge, and felicitie, depended hereof; I meane his appaled, dismaied, and afflicted disciples, doe recount twelue sundrie ap­paritiōs, which Iesus made vnto them in flesh, after his resurrectiō. The first, was to 1 Mary Magdalene aparte, when she with Mat. 16. Salome and other women, went and re­mained with ointments about the Sepul­cher. The second, was to all the forsaid 2 women together, as they returned home­wards, Mat. 28. who also were permitted to embrase his feete. The third, was to Simon 3 Peter alone. The fourth, to the two disci­ples 1. Cor. 15. Luc. 24. in their iourney to Emaus. The fifth, was to all the Apostles, and other disci­ples 4 together, whē the doores were shut. 5 The sixt, was to the same company againe, Ioa. 20. after eight daies, when Thomas was 6 with them: at what time also he did both 1. Cor. 15. Ioa. 20. eate and drincke, and suffred his bodie to be handled among them. The seuenth, was 7 to S. Peter and S. Ihon, with fiue other Ioa. 21. disciples, when they were in fishing; at what time also he vouchsafed to eate with 8 them. The eight, was to eleuen disciples Mat. 28. at one time, vpon the mounte Thabor in 9 Galiley. The ninth, was to more then fiue 1. Cor. 15. hundreth brethern at one time, as S. Paule 10 testifieth. The tenth, was to S. Iames, as the Ibid. same Apostle recordeth. The eleuenth, 11 was to al his Apostles, disciples, & friends Act. 1. [Page 238] together, vpon the mount Oliuet by Ierusalem, when in their presence, he as­cended vp to heauen. The twelueth and 12 last, was after his Ascension, vnto S. Paul, as him self beareth witnes. 1. Cor. 15.

Al thes apparitions are recorded in Scripture, as made by Iesus after his Re­surrection, to such as by his eternal wis­dome, were preordained to be witnesses of so glorious a spectacle. To whom as S. Act. 1. Luke affirmeth, he shevved him self aliue by many argumentes, for the space of 40 dayes toge­ther, and reasoned vvith them of the kingdome of his father. And why any mā should mistrust the testimonie of thes men that sawe him, conuersed with him, eate with him, tou­ched him, and heard him speake; & whos entire estate and welfare depēded wholy of the certaintie hereof: I see no reason. For what comfort had it bene or consola­tion to thes men, to haue deuised of them Circumstā ­ces that cō ­f [...]me the true Resur­rection of Iesus. selues, thes former apparitions? What en­couragemēt might they haue takē, in thos doleful times of desolation and afflictiō, to haue had among them, the dead bodie of him, on whos only life their vniuersal hope and confidence depended? The Scribes & Pharisees, beīg a stonished with the sudaine newes of his rising againe, cō ­firmed vnto them by their owne souldiars that sawe it: found no other waie to resist the fame therof, but onely by saying, (as also their posteritie doe vnto this dave,) that his disciples came by night, and stole away his bodie, whiles the souldiours [Page 239] were a sleepe. But what likelihood or possibilitie can there be in this? For first, it is euident to al the world, that his Apo­stles thēselues, (who were the heads of al the rest,) were so dismaied, discomforted, and deiected at that time; as they durst not once goe out of the dore. For which cause, only thos seely women, who for their sexe esteemed them selues more free from violence; presumed alone to visite his Se­pulcher, which no one man durst for feare of the souldiours; vntil by thos women they were informed, that the forsaid band of souldiours were terrefied and put to flight by Christes Resurrection.

And how then was it likely, that men Greate im­probabili­tics. so much amazed & ouercome with feare, should aduenture to steale a bodie from a Guarde of Souldiours that kept it? Or if their hartes had serued them to aduenture so greate a daunger: what hope or proba­bilitie had ther bene of successe? espe­ciallie, consideringe the said bodie lay e in a new sepulcher of stone, shutt vp and locked, and fast sealed by the Magistrate? How was it possible (I say) that his disci­ples should come thyther? breake vp the Monument? take out his bodie? and carie the same away, neuer after to be sene or founde, without espial of some one amō ­gest so many that attended ther? Or if this were possible, (as in reason it is not;) yet what profite, what pleasure, what com­fort, could they receaue hereby? We see that thes apostles and disciples of his, [Page 240] who were so abandoned of life and hart in his Passion: after two dayes onlie, they were so changed; as life and death can be no more contrarie.

For, wheras before they kept home in The great change in Iesus disci­ples, by his resurrectiō. all feare, and durst appeare no wher, ex­cept amonge their owne priuate friēdes: now they came foorth into the streetes and common places, and auouched with all alacritie, and irresistible constancie; euen in the faces and hearinge of their greatest enimies; that Iesus was rysen frō death to life; that they had sene hym; spo­ken with hym; and enioyed his presence. And that for restimonie and confirmation hereof, they were most redie to spēd their liues. And could all this (trow you) pro­ceede onlie, of a dead bodie, which they had gotten by stealth into their posses­sion? Would not rather the presence and sight of such a bodie; so torne, mangled, & deformed as Iesus bodie was both vpō the Crosse and before; haue rather dismayed them more, then haue gyuen them cōfort? Yes trulie. And therfore Pilat the Gouer­nour, considering thes circumstances; and that it was vnlikelie, that either the bodie should be stolne without priuitie of the Souldiars; or if it had bene; that it should Th' exami­natiō of the matter by Pilate. yeeld such life, hart, consolation, & cou­rage to the stealers: beganne to gyue eare more diligentelie to the matter; and cal­ling to him the Souldiars that kept the watch, vnderstoode by them the whole truth of th' accident: to witt; that in their [Page 241] sight and presence, Iesus was risen out of his sepulcher to life, and that at his rising, ther was so dreadful an earth-quacke, with trembling & opening of sepulchers rounde about; such skriches, cries, & cō ­motion of all elementes: as they durst not abyde longer, but ranne and tolde the Iuishe magistrates therof, who being greatelie discontented (as it seemed) with th' aduertisement; gaue them money to saye, that while they were sleeping, the bodie was stolne by his disciples frō them.

All this wrote Pilate presentlie to his Lord Tyberius, then Emperour of Rome. Pylates let­ter to Ty­berius, and his procee­ding ther­vpon. And he sent withal, the particuler exami­nations and confelsions of diuers other, that had sene and spoken with such as were risen from death at the same tyme, and had appeared to many of their ac­quaintance in Hicrusalem, assuring them also, of the resurrection of Iesus. Which informations when Tyberius th' Empe­rour had considered, he was greatelie mo­ued therwith, & proposed to the Senate, that Iesus might be admitted among the rest of the Roman Godes; offering his owne consent, with the priuiledge of his supreme royal suffrage to that decree. But the Senate in no wise would agree ther­unto. Whervpon Tyberius being offen­ded, gaue licence to all men to beleeue in Iesus that would; and forbydde vpō paine of death, that anie officer or other, should molest or trouble such as bare good affec­tiō, [Page 242] zeale, or reuerence to that name. Thus much testifiethe Tertulian againste the Tertul. in apolog. pro Christian. Gentiles of his owne knowledge; who liuing in Rome, a learned man, & pleader of causes, diuers years before he was a Christian; (which was about 180. yeares after Christes Ascension;) had great abi­litie by reason of th' honour of his fami­lie, learning, and place wherin he liued, to see and know the recordes of the Romās. And the same doth cōfirme also Egesippus, Egesip. l. 1. hist. Euseb. l. 4. c. 21. Rutsin. l. 1. c. 22. an other Auncient writer, of no lesse au­thoritie then Tertulian, before whom he liued.

Neither onlie diuers Gentiles had this opinion of Iesus resurrection againe from death, but also sundrye Iewes of great Th' opinion of the vvi­ser sorte of Ievves tou­chinge Iesus resurrectiō ī that time. credite and wisdome at that tyme, were inforced to beleeue it; notwithstanding it pleased not God to gyue them so much grace, as to become Christians. This ap­peareth plainelie by the learned Ioie­phus, who writing his storie not aboue fortie years after Christs Passion, tooke occasion to speake of Iesus and of his dis­ciples. And after he had shewed how he was Crucified by Pilat, at th' instance of the Iewes; and that for all this, his disci­ples ceased not to loue hym still: he adioy­neth furth with these wordes. Idcirco iliis tertio die vita resumpta, denuo apparuit. That Ioseph. l. 14 antiq. c. 4. is,‘for this loue of his disciples, he appea­red vnto them againe the third daye, whē he had resumed life vnto hym.’ Which ex­presse, plaine, and resolute wordes, we [Page 243] may in reason take, not as the consession onlie of Iosephus, but as the common iudgement, opinion, and sentence of all the discrete and sober men of that tyme, layed downe and recorded by this Histo­riographer. In whose dayes ther were yet manie Christians a lyue, that had seene & spoken with Iesus after his resurrection; and infinite Iewes, that had heard the same protested by their fathers, brethren, kinlfolke, & friends, who had bene them selues Eye-witnesses therof.

AND thus hauinge declared and proo­ued the resurrection of our Saue our Iesus, Of Iesus Ascēsion. both how it was forshewed, as also fulfil­led: there remaineth nothing more of ne­cessitie to be said in this Section. For that, who soeuer seeth and acknowledgeth, that Iesus beinge deade, could rayse hym selfe againe to life: will easilie belieue also that he was able to ascende to heauē. Wherof, notwithstandinge, S. Luke allea­geth Act. 1. six skore witnesses at the leaste, in whose presence he ascended from the toppe of the mount Oliuet, after 40 dayes space which he had spent with them, frō the tyme of his resurrection. He alleageth also, the appearing of two Angels among Lykeli­hodes of truthe. all the people, for testimonie therof. He nameth the day, and place, when, & wher it happened. He recompteth the verie wordes, that Iesus spake at his Ascension. He telleth the maner how he ascended, and how a cloude came downe and re­ceiued hym into it. He declareth what the [Page 244] multitude did, whether they went, and in what place they remained after their de­parture thence. And finallie, he setteth downe so manie particulers; as it had bene th' easiest matter in the world, for his eni­mies to haue refuted his narration, if all had not bene true. Neither was ther any to receyue more dōmage by the falsehood therof, then hym self and thos of his pro­fession, if the matter had bene feigned.

Wherfore to conclude at length this treatise of the Birth, Life, Doctrine, Ac­tiōs, The cōclu­sion of this secōd sectiō. Death, Resurrection, and Ascenciō of Iesus: seing nothing hath happened in the same, which was not fortolde by the pro­phets of God; nor any thing forshewed by the same prophetes concerninge the Messias, whiche was not fulfilled most exactly, within the compase and course of Iesus abode vpon earth: we may most certainly assure our selues, that as God can neither foretell an vntruth, nor yelde testimonie to the same: so can it not bee, but that thes things which we haue she­wed to haue bene so manifestly fore-pro­phesied, and so euidently accomplished: must needs a-certaine vs, that Iesus was the true Messias. Whiche thing shal vet more particulerly appeare, by that which ensewed by his power and vertue, after his Ascention; which shalbe the argumēt of the section that foloweth.

Hovv Iesus proued his Deitie after his depar­ture to heauen. Sect. 3.

AS BY THE DEEDES AND Actions of Iesus while he was vpon earth, com­pared with the predictions of Gods pro­phetes from time to time; he hath bene declared in the former sections, to be the true Messias and Sauiour of the world: so The contētes of this third sectiō in this that now we take in hand, shal the same be shewed by such thinges, as en­sued after his Ascention and departure from this world. Wherin his power and Deitie appeared more manifestly (if it may be,) then in other his workes which he wrought in this life. In which kinde, albeit I might treate of many and almost infinite branches: yet for order and breui­ties sake, I meane only to take in conside­ration, thes fewe that ensue. Wherin not only the power of Iesus, but also his loue, his care, his prouidence, and most perfect accomplishment of all his promisses; and finallie, the iustificatiō of all his speeches, prophesies, and doctrines vpon earth, haue bene declared.

And to reduce what is to be said herein, to some order and methode; it is to be no­ted, that in the first place shalbe considered the sustentation, protection, encrease, and The diuisiō of the par­ticuler con­siderations insuinge. continuation of Iesus litle Church and kingdome, that him self first planted and left vpon earth. The second consideration shalbe, of his Apostles and their actions. [Page 246] The third, of his Euangelistes. The fourth, of his witnesses & Martyres, throughout the worlde. The fifte, shal treate of the kingdome of infernal powers, beaten doune by his vertue. The sixt, of the pu­nishment and inst reuenge that lighted vpon his enimies, who most impugned his diuine person in this world. The se­uenth & last, shall declare the fulfilling of all such propheties and predictions, as proceeded from his diuine mouth, while he was conuersant vpon earth.

NOVV THEN for the first, it is to be THE. [...] Conside­ration. CHRISTES. Church. considered, that at Iesus departure out of this world from the Moūt Olieut, S. Luke reporteth, that al the multitude of his fo­lowers, which there had beheld his As­cention into heauen, returned backe to­gether into the Citie of Ierusalem, and there remained in one house together; cōtinuing in praier and expectatiō, what should become of them. The whole Citie was bent against them: them selues were poore and simple people; and diuers of them womē: Lands or Reuenues they had not to mainteine them; nor friends in Court to gyue them countenance against their enimies. The name of Iesus was most odious; and who soeuer did fauour him, was accompted a Traitour & ennemie to the state. There wanted not (perhaps) among them, who considering the great multitude, would imagine with themsel­ues, what should become of them; wher they should finde to maintaine & sustaine [Page 247] them; what should be the ende of that The state of Christs first Church. feeble congregation? For abrode they durst not goe, for feare of persecution: & continue long together, they might not, for want of necessaries. Besides that, euery houre they expected to be molested and drawē forth, by Catchpoles & Officiers. And albeit, in thes distresses, the freshe memorie of Iesus, and his sweet promisses made vnto them at his departure; as also the delectable presence of his blessed mo­ther, and her often evhortations and en­couragements vnto them, did comfort them greately, as wel may be supposed: yet to him that by humane reason, should ponder and weigh their present state and condition: it could not chuse but seme hard, and no waies durable.

But be hold vpō the sudaine, when they had continued now ten daies together, The Com­minge of the Holie Ghost, and vvhat com­fortes he brought vvith him. Act. 2. and might by al probabilitie finde them selues in very high degree of temporal distresses: Iesus performed his promise of sending them a COMFORTER, which was the Holy-Ghost. By whos comming, besides the internal ioye, and incredible alacritie and exultation of minde; they receyued also fortitude, and audacitie, to goe forth into the world. They receyued the gift of tongues, enabling them to conuerse and deale with al sortes of peo­ple. They receyued wisdome and lear­ning, with most wonderfull illuminatiō in highest mysteries, wherby to preach, to teach, and conuince their aduersaries. [Page 248] They receyued the gift of prophetie to foretell thinges to come; together with the power of Working Signes & Mira­cles, wherby the whole world remained astonished. And for a taste or earnest­penie of that which should ensue, concer­ning th' infinite encrease of that litle con­gregation: they sawe three thousand of their aduersaries conuerted to them in one day, by a sermon of S. Peter.

Which encrease went on so fast, for the time that ensued: that within fortie yeares after, the Gentiles them selues cō ­fesse, that the branches of this congrega­tion, were spread ouer al the world, and beganne to put in feare the verie Empe­rours Sueton. in vita Nero. Corn. Tac. l. 5. [...]. them selues. Whereof not long after, a man as learned, as euer was any conuerted from paganisme to Christiani­tie, beareth recorde in his defense to an Emperour and his officers, who accor­ding to the nature of persecutours, accōp­ted Christians for Traitours to his state and dignitie. Which vulgar obiection, this forsaid learned man refuteth in thes wordes.

If we were enemies to your estate; you
Tertuliā in Apolog. ad gentes.
might well seeke new Cities & Coūtries wherof to beare gouernment; for that you should haue in your Empire, more en­nemies then Citizens. We haue filled your Townes, your Cities, your Prouinces, your Ilādes: your Castles, your Forteresses, your Tentes, your Campes: your Courtes, your Pa laces, your Senates, and your market [Page 249] places. Only we haue left your idola­trous temples vnto your selues; al other places are ful of Christians. If we were enemies, what dangerous warres might we make against you (albeit our number were farre lesse,) who esteeme so litle of our liues, as to offer our selues daily to be slaine at your handes? This then is your safetie in very deed; not your persecuting of vs, but that we are honest, patient, and obedient; and that it is more lauful in Christian religion, to be killed, then to kill.

By which wordes of Tertulian, in this The vvon­derfull quicke in­crease of Christes Church. first beginnings and infancie (as it were) of Christian religion, (for he liued in the second age after Christ;) we see how this litle flocke and kingedome of Iesus was increased, not withstanding all the resi­stance and violence of the world against it. Which appeareth by the same Tertu­lian, In praesae. Apolog. to haue bene such; & was euen at that tyme when he wrote those wordes; (the fowerth persecution being then in most furie:) as all the malefectours of the world together, had not so much rigour shewed against them; as had the most in­nocent Christiā that liued, for confeising onlie that name and religion.

This then declared must apparentelie, that it could not proceede, but of some di­uine power and supernatural assistance, that in so shorte a space; amiddest the con­tradiction and opposition of so manie ad­uersaires; amōge the whippes, & swordes [Page 250] and tortures, of so greate, potent, and vio­lent persecutours: this poore, simple, and feeble cōgregatiō, should pearse through, and augment it self so strongelie. Espe­ciallie if we cōsider th' outwarde meanes Th' īcrease of Christiās against na­ture. of this increase; wherein ther was nothing to allure or cōtent mans nature: nothing gorgeous, nothinge delectable, nothinge to please or entertaine sensualitie.

We reade of an Emperour, that takinge in hande to conquer the world, made this Plutarch. in Apoth. Prisc. re­gum. The procla­mation of Cyrus Mo­narche of Media. Proclamation for winninge men vnto his partie. ‘Who soeuer will come and be my Seruaunt; if he be a footeman, I will make hym a horsman. If he be a horsman, I will make hym ryde with Coches. If he be a Farmour, I will make hym a Gentle­man. If he possesse a cotage, I will gyue hym a village. If he haue a village, I will gyue hym a Cittie. If he be Lorde of a Cittie, I will make hym Prince of a regiō & countrie. And as for Gold, I wil power it foorth vnto them by heapes & weight, and not by number.’

This was Cyrus edict and proclama­tion to his followers: very glorious (as we see) in pompe of wordes and ostenta­tion Iesus pro­clamation. of stile. Let vs now compare the pro­clamation of Iesus, whos entrance and preface was; Paenitētiā agite: doe ye penāce. Math. 3. Ioh. 16. And then it followed; In hoc mundo pressu­ram habebitis: In this world you shall re­ceyue affliction. And then after againe; they shal vvhippe and murder you. And yet further: you shalbe hateful in the sight of all Math. 10. [Page 251] mē, for my sake. Thē is ther adioy ned: he that Luc. 9. loueth his life, shal loose his soule. After that ensweth: he that vvil follovv me, must beare his Crosse. And finallie the cōclusion is: he that Luc. 1. cōmeth to me, and doth not hate his father, his mo­ther, his vvife, his children, his brethrē, his sisters, as also his ovvne life; he is not vvorthie to be my seruant.

This was the entertainment proposed by Iesus, to such as would come and serue vnder his Banner: with expresse protestatiō, that hym self was sent into the world, Math. [...] not to bring peace, rest, and ease to flesh and blood, but rather to be the cause of sworde, fire, tribulation, combat, & enmi­tie. And yet, with thes colde offers, pre­sented to the world by poore, abiecte, & most contemptible officers; and by this doctrine, so Crosse and opposite to mans nature, inclination, and sensual appetite: he gained more hartes vnto hym, within the space of fortie yeares, as hath bene said; then euer did Monarche in the world possesse louing subiectes, by what soeuer temporal alluremente they did or might propose. Which argueth most euidently, the omnipotent puissance of hym, that contrary to mans reason, could bring to passe so miraculous a conquest.

THER FOLOVVETH in order, the cō ­sideration THE. 2. Conside­ration. OF Christs Apostes. of Christs Apostles; which in some respect, may be said more straunge and wonderful, then the former, in that they being both rule, and simple, and vn­letteredmen, (& for the most parte, of the [Page 252] baser sort,) should be chosen and assigned to so great a worke, as was the conuersiō of all Countries and Natiōs; and to stand in combat with the power, learning, and wisdome of all the world. Neither only had they to contend and fight against their enemies, but also to direct and gouerne and menage al thos, who should be adioy­ned to their maisters kingdome. To which charge they seemed so vnto warde and in­sufficient, in al that time wherin they li­ued with him vpon earth: as by their questions and demandes made vnto him 2 litle before his passion: they might ap­peare to haue learned very litle, in three whole years conuersation and instructiō; and in very deed, to be incapable of so high mysteries and functions.

Yet notwithstanding, thes men who of them selues were so weake and impo­tent; after strength and confirmation re­ceyued by the descending of Gods holy spirit into them; became so perfect, able, and most excellent men: as they brought the whole world in admiration of them. Not only, by the most exquisite perfectiō of their doctrine, (wherin of a sudaine, without studie, they excelled and conuin­ced the greatest Philosophers then li­uing;) but also, and that especially, by the rare and stupendious Miracles, which they wrought in the sight of al men. The contemplation wherof, as S. Luke repor­teth, Act 2. droue the beholders not only into great meruaile, but also into feare and ex­ceeding [Page 253] terrour.

And for example, he recompteth the Th' apostles Miracles. restoring of a lame mā at the Temple gate of Ierusalem, which had bene a Criple for the space of fortie yeares or more, and the miracle dōne and testefied, in the pre­sence and knowledge of all the Citie. He recordeth also, the dreadful death of Ana­nias Act. 3. and Saphira by the only speech and voice of S. Peter: as īn like maner, the healīg of infinite sicke people, by the presence & Act. 5. shadowe of the same Apostle. He repor­teth the most wonderful deliuerance of the said S. Peter out of the hands and pri­son of Herode by an Angel. The varietie of lāguages, which all th' Apostles spake The visible descending of the holy Ghost vpon al such, on whom the said Apostles did but laie their handes. The miraculous conuersiō of S. Paul, by Christs appearing 1. Cor. 15. 2. Cor. 12. Act. 9. 22. 26. vnto him in the way when he went to persecute. Of which miracle, S. Paul pro­tested in euery place afterward, and once especiallie, in open audience and iudge­ment before Agrippa the king, and Festus Gouernour of Iurie.

Thes miracles and manie moe are re­corded by S. Luke; wherof some part were sene by him self, and the rest most euident to all the worlde, as dōne in publique be­fore infinite witnesses. Neither is it pos­sible they could be forged, for that (as in the like I haue noted before,) it had bene most easye to haue refelled them, and therby to haue discredited the whole [Page 254] proceedings of Christian religion, in thos first beginnings. As for example; if the mi­racle of Peters deliuery forth of the han­des The Mira­cls reported of th' Apo­stles, could not be feig­red. and prison of Herod Agrippa, had any way bene to be touched with falsehood: how many would ther haue bene of He­rodes Officiers, Courtiars, seruantes, or friends, that for defence of their Princes honour, (so deeply tainted by this narra­tiō of S. Luke, published not lōg after the thig was dōne:) how many (I say) would haue offred them selues to refuce and dis­grace the writer therof, hauing so pre­gnant meanes by publike recorde to doe the same? So againe, wheras the same Luke reporteth of his owne knowledge, that in a Citie of Macedonie, named Philippi, S. Paul & Silas after many miracles dōne, Act. 16. were whipped and put in prison, with a diligēt guarde in the lowest prison of al; their feete locked fast in stockes of tym­ber; and that at midnight when Paul and Silas beganne to pray, the whole prison was shaken, and all the dores throwen open; as also the gyues, not only of thos two, but of al the other prisoners vpon a sudaine burst in sunder; & that therupon, not only the Iayler cast him self at the feete of Paul, but the Magistrates also, (who the daie before had caused them to be whipt,) came and asked them pardon, and entreated them to depart from their Citie: This storie (I say) if it had bene false; ther needed no more for consutatiō therof, but only to haue examined the [Page 255] whole Citie of Philippi, which could haue testified the contrary.

And yet amongst so many aduersaries, None euer durst im­pugne the Miracles of our Apo­stles, but by calumnia­tion. & eager impugners of Christian religiō, as Gods enemie stirred vp in the prima­tiue Church, of all sortes and sectes of people: no one euer appeared, that durst attempt to take in hand, the particuler im­proouing of thes or the like miracles; but rather confessing the factes; sought alwayes to discredite them, by other sini­ster calumniations: namely and common­lie; that they were wrought by the de­ceits and sleights of art magike. Thus said the Iewes of the miracles of Iesus; and so Mat. 12. said Iulian th' Apostata, of the wonderful Apud Ci­ryl. li. 1. cōt. Iulia. Aug. lib. de vera Relig. straunge thinges done by S. Peter, and S. Paul; affirming them to haue bene the most expert in Magike, of any that euer liued; and that Christ wrote a special booke of that profession, and dedicated the same to Peter and Paul; wher as notwithstanding, it is most euident, that Paul was a perse­cutour diuers yeares after Christ depar­ted. One Hierocles also wrote a booke, Euseb. lib. cōt. Hiero. wherin he feigneth Appolonius Tyanaeus to haue done the like miracles by Ma­gicke, which Christ and his Apostles did by diuine power. And finally, it is a gene­ral opinion, that both Nero and Iulian gaue them selues so extremely to the stu­die of that vaine science, as no men euer did the like; vpon emulation onely of the miracles done in Rome by Peter and Paul when Nero liued, and by other Saintes & [Page 256] disciples, in the time of Iulian.

But what was the ende? Plinie that was a Pagane, writeth thus of Nero; that Plin. lib. 30. Nat. hist. cap. 1. as no man euer laboured more then he in that science: so no man euer left a more certaine testimonie of the maruailous ex­ceeding vanitie therof. The like in effect Zosimus in cit. Iulia. writeth Zosimus of Iulian, albeit him self a malitious heathen. And if it were not writen; yet their seueral extraordinarie calamities, and most miserable deathes, which by al their Magike they could not forsee: doth sufficiently testifie the same vnto vs; especially the last words of Iu­lian; Vicisti Galilae, vicisti. Thou hast woune Niceph lib. 10. cap. 35. histo. (ô Galilaean,) thou hast gotten the victo­rie. Acknowleging therby, as well the truth of Christs miracles and of his fo­lowers, as also the vanitie, follie, and madnes, of his owne endeuours.

Thus then went foreward Christs The succes­se of th' A­postles. Marc. 16. Apostles, and preached him euery wher throughout the world: Domino cooperate, & sermonem confirmante, sequentibus signis, that is, (as S. Marke affirmeth;) Our Lord Iesus working with them, & confirming their preaching by signes & miracles. In respect of which benigne assistance of Iesus in their actions; S. Luke saieth further; they Act. 14. dealt most confidently in our Lord; his vvord of grace giuing testimonie to their doinges, and shevving forth signes and most prodigious vvon­ders hy their handes. No pers cution, no ter­rour, no threats of enemies, no difficultie, or daunger that might occurre; could staie [Page 257] them from their course of setting foorth Christs name and glorie. And they were so assured of the truth, by the inward il­luminations which they had, and by this Th' [...] of the [...] certaine testimonie of Gods fauour and assistance in doing miracles: as one of thē writeth thus: That vvhich vve haue eard, vvhich vve haue sene vvith our eyes, vvhich vve 1. Ioh 1. haue beheld, vvhich our handes haue handled of the vvorde of lise: that vve doe testesie and an­nounce vnto you. And an other, S. Paul. who had bene a greeuous persecutour and was cō ­uerted without conference with any Christian in the world; said, of Iesus Christ that vvas dead, and resen againe; that, [...] [...] Rom. 8. bulatiō, nor distresse, nor sainine, nor beggarie, nor dāger, nor persecutiō, nor dint of svvorde, could daunt him from the seruice of [...] a maister. And in another place, he saith, that he esteemed all thing of this world, wherin a man might glorie; to be as [...] Phil. 3. dunge and detrimentes, in respect of the eminent knowledge, (that is his worde) of his Lord Iesus Christ. In which verie name, he tooke so exceedig great delight; as in a few Epistels which he left writē; he is obserued to haue vsed this sentence, Dominus noster Iesus Christus, aboue two hundred tymes.

Neither endured this in thes Apostles, for a time onlie, but all their liues, which The ioyful andinze of th' Apo­stles. as they spent with alacritie in the seruice of Iesus: so inthe ende they gaue vp the same most cherefully, to what soeuer death presented it self, for cōformation & [Page 258] sealing of their former doctrine; neuerso ful of cōfidence, courage, and consolatiō, as at that houre; nor euer so boldly de­nouncing 2. Tim. 4. [...]. Thes. 2. their Maister, or talking so ioy­fully of rewardes, Crounes, &c Kigdomes; as at the verie last instant and vpshot of their wordly combat. This thé declareth most manifestly, that the actions of thes men, proceeded not of humane spirit, nor could be perfourmed by the power of má; But by the diuine force and supernatural assistance of their Lord and God, whom they confessed.

AND THVS MVCHE in brauitie, of Christs Apostles. Ther ensue his Euangelistes; that THE. 3. Conside­ration. OF th' E­uāgelistes. is, such men, as haue lefte vnto vs writen, his birth, life, doctrine, & death. Wherin is to be noted, that lesus being God, tooke a different way from the custome of man, in deliuering vnto vs, his lawes and pre­ceptes. For that men, who haue bene law­makers vnto the worlde, knew no surer way of publishing their lawes, and pro­curing authoritie to the same; then to write them with their owne handes, and in their life time to establishe their pro­mulgation. So Lycurgus, Solon, & others among the Grecians: Numa to the Ro­manes: Mahomet to his Sarasins: and di­uers other in like maner. But Iesus to Iesus lest nothing vvriten by hym seif. shew his Diuine power in directing the penne and stile of his Euangelistes, would not leaue any thing writing him self, but passed from this world in simplicitie and filence, whithout any further shewe or [Page 259] ostentatiō of his own doings; meaning notwithstāding, by his eternal wisdome, that the prophetie of Ezechiel should be Ezec. 1. fulfilled, which foresignified the being of his fowre irrefragable witnesses, which daie and night without rest, should preache, extolle, and magnifie their Lord and Maister, to the worldes ende.

Foure then were fore-prophetied, and foure (as we see) by Gods prouidence The diffe­rent quali­ties, & cir­cumstances of the 4. Euāgelists. were prouided, to fulfil the same prophe­tie. The first and last, are two Apostles, that wrote as they had sene. The two midle, are two diseiples, who registred thinges, as they had vnderstoode by con­ference with the Apostles. The first Ghos­pel was written by an Apostle; to giue light & open the waie to al the rest: And the last, in like maner was written by an Apostle; to giue authoritie and confirma­tion to al the former. The first was writtē in Hebrue or Iewish tongue, for that Ie­sus actions were dóne in that countrie; to th' ende that therby, eyther the whole Na­tion might beleeue them, or the obstinate impugne them. The other three, were written in the publique tongues of al other nations; that is, in the Greeke and Romane languages: if it be true (See Ar­macan. l. 9. de quaest. which diuers holde,) that S. Marcs Ghospel was first written in Latin.

They wrote their stories in diuers coun­tries, eche one remaning farre distant frō Circumstā ­ces of truth in our Euā ­gelistes. an other; and yet agreed they al (as we see) most exactly, in the verie same nar­ration. [Page 260] They wrote in diuers times, the one after the other; and yet the later, did neither correct nor reprehend anie thing ithe former. They published their stories, when infinite were aliue that knew the factes, and many more that desired to im­pugne them. They set doune in most of their particuler narrations, the time, the day, the houre, the place, the village, the house, the persons, the men, the women, and other the like. Which circumstances, the more they are in number, the more easie to be refuted, if they were not true. Neither did they in Iurie write of thin­ges done in India; but in the same coun­trie it self; in Townes & Cities that were publiquely knowen; in Bethania, and Bethsaida, villages hard by Ierusalem; in the Suburbes and hiles about the Citie; in such a Streete, at such a Gate, in such a Porch of the Temple, at such a fishpoole, which al people in Ierusalem did euery daie beholde.

They published their writinges in their owne life time; and preached in worde, so much as in writing they had recorded. The pub­lishing of our Ghos­pelles. They permitted the same to the iudgment and examination of al Christs church; especially of the Apostles, who were able to discerne euerie least thing therin con­tained. So Marke set forth his Ghospel, by the instruction and approbation of S. Pe­ter: as also did Luke, by the authoritie of Hieron. in catalog. Script. Eccles. S. Paul. They altered not their writinges afterward, as other authours are wont, in [Page 261] their later editions: nor euer corrected they anie one iote of that which they had first set doune. And that which neuer happened, in any other writinges in the world besides; nor euer Prince or Mo­narch was able to bring to passe, for cre­dite of his edictes or sanctions: they gaue their liues, for defence and iustefying of that they had written.

Their maner of writing is sincere and simple; without al arte, amplification, or The maner of style in our Euāge­listes. Rhetorical exornatiō. They flatter none; no not Iesus him self, whom they most adore; nor in confessing him to be their God and Creatour, doe they conceale his infirmities of fleshe, in that he was man; as Mat. 21. Marc. 2. Iohn. 7. Luc. 19. his hunger and thirst; his being wearie; how he wept; his passions of feare; and the like. So lykewise, in the Apostles that were the gouernours, superiours, and heads of al the rest; doe thes Euangelistes dissemble, hide, or passe ouer no such thin­ges as were defects and might seeme to worldlie eies, to turne to their discre­dites. As for exāple; how Christ rebuked them for their dulnes in vnderstanding: how after long instruction, they propo­sed notwithstanding verie rude and im­pertinent Marc. 15. Iohn. 10. 11. & 20. questions vnto him: how Tho­mas would not beleeue the attestation of his fellowes: how S. Ihon and S. Iames the sonnes of Zebedee, ambitiouslie solli­cited to haue the preheminence of sitting nearest to Christ ī his glorie. Which later Marc. 10. clause, beīg set doune clearly by S. Marke, [Page 272] while yet S. Ihon the Apostle was liuing: the same was neuer denied nor taken yll by the said Apostle, neither S. Markes Ghospel the lesse approued by him, albeit he liued longest, and wrote last of al the rest.

Nay, which is more, and greatly (no A special point to be obserued in our Euan­gelistes. doubt) to be obserued; thes Euangelistes were so sincere and religious in their nar­rations: as they noted especiallie the im­persections of them selues, and of such other, as they principally respected. So S. Mathew, nameth him self Mathevv the Pu­blican. And so S. Marke, being Peters disci­ple, Mat. 10. Narc. 14. recordeth particulerly, how S. Peter thrise denied his maister. S. Luke, that was scholler and dependent of S. Paul, maketh mention alone, of the litle differences be­twene Paul and Barnabas; & in the storie Act. 15. of S. Stephens death, after al his narration ended; he addeth a clause that in humane iudgement might haue bene left out, to witt; Saulus erat consentiës neci eius. Saul was Act. 7. cōsenting & culpable of Stephens death. Wherby we may perceaue most perspi­cuouslie, that as thes men were plaine, sincere, and simple, and farre from presu­ming to deuise any thinge of them selues: so were they religious, and had scruple to passe ouer or leaue oute any thinge of the truth, in fauour of them selues, or of any other whosoeuer.

Thes mens writinges then, were pu­blished & receyued for vndoubted truth, by all that liued in the verie same age, and [Page 273] were pryuie to the particulers therin cō ­teined. They were copied abrode into in­finit mens handes, and so conserued with all care & reuerence, as holie and diuine scripture. They were read in churches, throughout all countries and Nations; expounded, preached, and taught by all pastours; and commentaries made vpon No doubt, but that vve haue the true vvritinges of our Euā ­gelistes. them by holie fathers from tyme to tyme. So that no doubt can be made, but that we haue the verie sa ne writinges incorrupt, as th' authours left them: for that it was impossible for anie enimie to corrupt so manie Copies ouer al the world, without discoucrie and resiitance. And the same very text, wordes, and sentences, which from age to age, the learned fathers doe alleage out of thes scriptures, we fynde them now, as they had them at that tyme. As for example; S. Iohn that lyued lon­gest of all th' Apostles and Euangelistes, had amōge other schollers and auditours, Papias, Ignatius, & Policarpus; al which agree of the foure Ghospels, and other writinges left vnto vs in the newe Testa­ment; affirming S. Iohn to haue approued the same. These men were maisters againe to Iustinus Martyr, Irenaeus, and other, whose writinges remaine vnto vs. And if they did not; yet their sayinges and iudge­mentes touching the Scriptures, are re­corded vnto vs by Eusebius and other fa­thers of the next age after, and so from Fuseb. li. 5. hist. cap. 15. hand to hand vntil our dayes. So, that of this, ther can be no more doubt, then [Page 264] whether Rome, Constantinople, Hieru­salem, and other such renoumed Cities knowen to al the world at this day; be the very same, wherof Authours haue treated so much in auncient times.

AND THVS MVCHE of Christs Euan­gelistes; THE. 4. Conside­ration. OF Mar­tyrs. for whose more credit, and for confirmation of thinges by them recor­ded; his diuine prouidence preordained, that infinite witnesses, (whom we cal Martyrs,) should offer vp their blood in the primatiue Churche and after. Wheras for no other doctrine, profession, or reli­gion in the world, the like was euer heard of, albeit among the Iewes, in the tyme of the Machabies, and at some other Machab. li. & 2. tymes also, when that nation for their sin­nes were aff [...]icted by Heathen Princes, some fewe were tyrannized and iniu­riouslie put to death: yet commonly, and for the most parte, this was rather of bar­barous furie in the Paganes for their resi­stāce, thē directly for hatred of Iuishe reli­giō. And for the number, ther is no doubt, but that more Christians were putt to death, within two monethes for their be­liefe throughout the world; then were of Iewes in two thouland yeares before Christs comming. Which is vndoubtedly a matter verie wounderful; considering, that the Iuishe religion impugned no lesse the Pagan Idolatrie, then doth the doc­trine of the Christians. But this came to passe, that Christes wordes might be ful­filled, who said; I come not to bring peace, but Mat. 5. [Page 265] the svvorde. And againe; I sende you forth as Math. 10. sheepe among vvolues. That is to saye; to be torne and harried, and your bloud to be deuoured. Thre points. to be cōside­red in our Martyrs.

In which extreme and most incredible sufferinges of Christians, thre pointes are worthie of great consideration. The first, what infinite multitudes of al states, con­ditions, sexe, qualities, and age, did suffer dailie fortestimonie of this truth. The se­cond; See the narratiō of Philaeas by shope in Affrica touching this pointe, alleaged by Eusebius. l. 8. hist. cap. 11. & 12. What intollerable and vnacusto­med tormentes, not hard of in the worlde before, were deuised by Tyrantes for af­flicting this kinde of people. The third; what inuincible courage, and vnspeakable alacritie the Christiās shewed, in bearing oute these afflictions, which the enimies theselues could not attribute, but to some diuine power and supernatural assistance.

And for this later point of comfort in their sufferings, I will alleage onlie this The singu ler alacri tie of Chri stians, in their suffe ringes. Tertul. in apolog. c. 1. testmonie of Tertuliā against the Gētiles; who obiected, that wicked men suffered also, as wel as Christians. Wherto this learned Doctour made answere in these wordes. ‘Truth it is, that many men are prone to yl, and do suffer for the same: but yet dare they not defend their euil to be good as Christiās doe their cause. For that euery euil thig by nature, doth bring with it either feare or shame: & therfor we see, that malefactours, albeit they loue euill; yet would they not appeare so to the world, but desire rather to lie in couert. They tremble when they are taken; and [Page 266] when they are accused, they deny all, and do scarse oftentimes cōfesse their doings vpon torments. And finally, when they are condemned, they lament, mone, and do impute their il fortune to destinie, or to the planets. But the Christian, what doth he like to this? Is their any man ashamed? or doth any man 'repent him when he is taken, except it be for that he was not taken rather? If he be noted by the enemy for a Christian; he glorieth in the same: if he be accused; he defendeth not him self: if he be asked the question; he con­fesseth it willingly: if he be cōdemned; he veldeth thankes. What euil thē is ther in this Christian cause, which lacketh the natural sequele of euil? I meane, feare, shame, tergiuersatiō, repentance, sorowe, and deploration? what euil (I say) can this be deemed, whose guiltines is ioye? whose accusation, is desire? whose punishment, is happines?’

Hitherto are the wordes of learned Tertulian, who was an eye-witnes of that Iesus assi­stance to his Martyrs. he wrote, & had no smal part in the cause of thos that suffred, being him self in that place and state, as daily he might expect to taste of the same affliction. To which com­bat, how redie he was, may appeare by di­uers places of this his Apologie, wherin he vttereth, (besides his zeale & feruour,) a most confident securitie, and certaine as­surance of Iesus assistance, by that which he had sene performed to infinite other in their greatest distresses, from the same [Page 267] Lord before. So that nothing doth more a-certaine vs of the diuine power and omnipotencie of Iesus; then the fortitude inuincible, which aboue al humane rea­son, force, and nature, he imparted to his Martyrs.

AFTER VVHICH consideration, there THE. 5. Conside­ration. THE sub­iection of spirites. cōmeth to be weighed, the fifte point be­fore mentioned, which is, of the same power and omnipotēcie of Iesus, declared and exercised vpon the spirites insernal. Which thing, partely may appeare by the Oracles alleaged in the ende of the for­mer section, (wherin thos spirites fore­tolde, that an Hebrew Childe should be borne, to the vtter subuersion and ruine of their Tyrānical dominion:) And much more at large the same might be declared, by other answers & Oracles vttered after Christes natiuitie and registred in the monumentes euen of the heathens them selues. Wherof he that desireth to see more ample mention, (especially out of Porphyrie, who then was liuing,) let him read Eusebius sixte booke de preparatione Euangelica, where he shal finde store; and namely, that Apollo many times excla­med Hei mihi, congemiscite: Hei mihi; hei mihi; Oraculorum defecit me claritas. ‘Woe vnto me; lament yee with me: woe vnto me; woe vnto me; for that the honour of Oracles hath now foresakē me. Which cōplaintes and lamentations, are nothinge els but a plaine confession, that Iesus was he, of whom a prophet said diuers ages before,[Page 268] Attenuabit omnes Deos terrae: he shal weare­out & bring to beggarie, al the Godes or Soplo. 2. Idols of the earth.’ This confessed also the wicked spirites them selues, when at Christs appearing ī Iurie, they came vnto him at diuers times, and besought him, not to afflict or torment them, nor command them presently to returne to hel; but ra­ther, to permit them some litle time of en­tertainment, in the sea or mountaines, or amōg heardes of swine, or the like. Which confession they made in the sight of all the world: and declared the same after­wardes by their factes and deedes.

For presently vpon Iesus death, & vpon Of the mi­raculous ceasinge of Oracles at Chrisis ap­pearinge. the preaching of his name and Ghospel throughout the worlde, the Oracles which before were aboundant in euery prouince and countrie, were put to silēce. Wherof I might alleage the testimonies of verie many Gētiles them selues, as that of Iuuenal: Iuuen.

Cessant Oracula Delphis. Saty. 6.

Al Oracles at Delphos, doe nowcease: etc. That also of an other Poete:

Excessere omnes adytis, aris (que) relictis

Dij, quibus imperium hoc steterat. &c. Lucan.

‘That is: the Goddes by whom this em­pire stood, are al departed from their tem­ples, and haue abandoned their Altars & places of habitatiō.’ Strabo also hath thes expresse wordes: The Oracle of Delphos at Strab li. 9. Geograph. 169 Plutar. de defectu Oracul. this daye, is to be sene in extreme beggarie and mē ­dicitie. [Page 169] And finally, Plutarche that liued within one hundreth yeares after Christ, made a special booke, to search out the causes, why the Oracles of the Goddes were ceased in his time. And after much turning & winding many waies, resolued vpon two principal pointes, as causes therof. The first, for that in his time, ther was more store of wise men then before, whos answers might stād in stead of Ora­cles: and the other, that peraduenture the Tvvo in­sufficient causes. spirits which were accustomed to yeeld Oracles, were by length of time growen olde and dead. Both which reasons in the verie common sense of al men, must needs be false; and by Plutarch him self, can not stand with probabilitie. For first; in his bookes which he wrote of the liues of auncient famous men, he confesseth, that in such kinde of wisdom, as he most estee­med, they had not their equals amōg their posteritie. Secondlie, in his treatises of Philosophie, he passeth it for a ground, that spirits, not depēding of material bo­dies, can not die or waxe olde: and ther­fore, of necessitie we must conclude, that some other cause is to be yeelded of the ceasing of thes Oracles, which can not be but the presence and commaundement of some higher power, according to the saying of S. Iohn: To this ende appeared the 1. Ioh. 3. sonne of God, that he might dissolue (or ouer­throvve) the vvorkes of the deuil.

Neither did Iesus this alone, in his owne person, but gaue also power and au­thoritie [Page 270] to his disciples and folowers to doe the like; according to their commis­sion in S. Matheus ghospel; Super omnia De­monia Mat. 10. & spiritus immundos &c. ‘You shal haue authoritie, ouer al deuils and vncleane spi­rites.’ Which commission, how they afterward put in execution, the whole world yeeldeth testimonie. And for exam­ples [...] onlie, I wil alleage in this place, an offer or chalēge made for proof therof, by Tertullian to the heathen magistrates and persecutcurs of his time: his wordes Tertul. in Apolog. ad gentes. are thes. ‘Let ther be brought here in pre­sence before your tribunal seats, some per­son who is certainly knowen to be pos­sessed with a wicked spirite: and let that spirite be commaunded by a Christian, to A most cō ­fident offer made by Tertulian. speake, and he shal as trulie confesse him self to be a deuil, as at other times to you, he wil falselie say that he is a God. Againe at the same time; let there be brought forth one of thes (your priests or Pro­phets) that wil seeme to be possessed by a diuine spirite; I meane of thos, that speake gasping &c. (in whom you imagine your Gods to talke,) and except that spirit also, (commaunded by vs,) doe confesse him self to be a deuil, (being indeed afraid to lye vnto a Christian:) doe you shedde the blood of the Christiās in that very place, &c. None wil lye to their owne shame, but rather for honour or aduantage: yet thos spirits wil not saye to vs, that Christ was a Magician, as you doe; nor that he was of the common condition of men. They [Page 271] wil not saie, he was stolne out of his sepul­cher; but they wil confesse, that he was the vertue, wisdome, and worde of God; that he is in heauen, and that he shal come againe to be our iudge &c. Neither wil thes deuils in our presence, denie them selues to be vncleane spirits, and damned for their wickednes; and that they expect his most horrible iudgment, professing also, that they doe feare Christ in God, and God in Christ; and that they are made subiect vnto his seruantes.’

Hytherto are the wordes of Tertul­lian, conteining (as I haue said) a most confident chalenge, and that vpō the liues and blood of al Christians, to make trial of their power in controlling thos spi­rites, which the Romanes and other Gen­tiles adored as their Godes. Which of­fer, seing it was made & exhibited to the persecutors them selues, then liuing in Rome; wel may we be assured, that the enemie would neuer haue omitted so notorious an aduauntage, if by for­mer experience he had not bene persua­ded, that the ioining herein would haue turned and redounded to his owne confu­sion.

And this Puissant authoritie of Iesus, The vvon­derfull au­thoritie of Christians ouer spirits imparted to Christians, extended it self so farre forth; that not only their wordes and commandemētes, but euen their very presence did shut the mouthes, and driue into feare thes miserable spirites. So La­ctantius sheweth that in his daies, among [Page 272] many other exāples of this thing, a seely Lact. lib. 2. diuin. In­stit. c. 16. seruing-man that was a Christiā, folow­ing his maister into a certaine temple of Idoles; the Godes cried out, that no­thing could be weldone, as long as that Christian was in presence. The like re­cordeth Eusebius of Diocletian th' Em­perour, who going to Apollo for an Ora­cle; Euse. l. 5. de prap. Euā. receyued answere, that the iust mē vvere the cause that be could saye nothing. Which iust men, Apollos priest interpreted, to be meant ironically of Christians: & there­vpon, Diocletian beganne his most cruel and fearce persecution, in Eusebius daies. Sozomenus also writeth, that luliā th' A­postata endeuoring with many sacrifices Sozom. l. 3. hist. ca. 18. and coniurations, to drawe an answere from Apollo Daphnaeus, in a famous pla­ce, called daphne, in the suburbes of An­tioche: vnderstood at last by the Oracle, that the bones of S. Babylas the Martyr, that laie nere to the place, were the im­pedimēt why that God could not speake. And therupō, Iulian presently, caused the same bodie to be remoued. And finally, here of it proceeded, that in all sacrifices, coniurations, and other mysteries of the Gentils, ther was brought in, that phrase recorded by scoffing Lucian; Exeant Chri­stiani; let Christians depart; for that while Lucian. in Alex. they were present, nothing could be wel accomplished.

To conclude; the Pagane Porphyrie, that of al other, most earnestly endeuo­red to impugne and disgrace vs Christiās, [Page 273] and to holde vp the honour of his enfee­bled Porph. li. 1. cōt. Christ. apud Euse. li. 5. c. 1. de prae. Euāg. idoles; yet discoursing of the great plague that raigned most furiously in the Citie of Messina, i Cicilie wher he dwelt; yeeldeth this reason, why Aesculapius the God of Physike, (much adored in that place.) was not able to helpe them. It is no maruailes sayeth [...] this Citie so many yeares be vexed vvith the plague, seing that both Aescu­lapius A marue­lous conses­sion of Por­phyrie. and al other Godes, be novv departed from it, by the comming of Christians. For since that men haue bigunne to vvorship this Iesus, vve could neuer obtaine any profite by our Godes. Thus much confessed this Patrone of pa­ganisme, concerning the mayme that his Godes had receyued by Iesus honour. Which albeit he spake with a malitious minde, to bring Christians in hatred and persecution therby; yet is the confession notable, and confirmeth that storie which Plutarch in his forenamed booke, doth report; that in the later yeares of Tybe­rius A pretie storie of Plutarche. raigne, a strange voice and exceeding horrible clamour, with hideous cries, skriches, and houlinges were heard by many, in the Greciāsea, complaining that Plutar. de defectu Oracul. the great God PAN was now depar­ted. And this Plutarch (that was a Gētile,) affirmeth to haue bene alleaged and pro­ued, before th' Emperour Tyberius; who maruailed greatly, & could not by al his diuines and South sayers, whom he called to that consultation, gather out any rea­sonable meaning of this wonderful acci­dent. But we Christians, comparing the [Page 274] time wherin it happened, vnto the time of Iesus death and passion; and finding the same fully to agree: may more then pro­bably persuade our selues, that by the death of their great God PAN (which sig­nifieth all,) was imported the ruine and vtter ouerthrow of all the wicked spi­rites and Idoles vpon earth.

AND THVS HATH the Deitie of Iesus bene declared and proued by his THE. 6. Conside­ration. THE pu­nishmēt of enimies. omnipotent power in subduing infernal enimies. Now resteth it for vs to make manifest the same, by his like power and diuine iustice, shewed vpon diuers of his enimies here on earth; whos greatest punishment, albeit for the most part, he reserueth for the life to come: yet some­times, for manifestation of his omnipotē ­cie, (as especially it was behoueful i thos first daics of his appearāce in the world,) he chasteneth thē also euen here on earth, in the eye and sight of al men. So we read of the most in famous and miserable death of Herode the first, surnamed Ascolonita, 1. Herod As­colonita. who after his persecution of Christ in his infancie, and the slaughter of the infantes in Bethleem for his sake; was wearied out by a lothsome life, in feare and horrour Ioseph. l. 17 antiq. c. 10. & lib. 1. de bel. Iudai. ca. 21. of his owne wife and children; whom after he had most cruelly murdered; was enforced also by desperation, thorough his inspeakable vexations, grieues, and torments, to offer his owne hand to his owne destructiō, if he had not bene staied by friends that stood about.

[Page 275] After him, Archelaus his eldest sonne, that was a terrour to Iesus at his re­turne 2. Archilam. from Egipt, fel also by Gods Iu­stice, into maruailous calamities. For first, being left as king by his father; Augustus Ioseph. l. 17 antiq. c. 15. l. 2. de bel. Iuda. c. 6. would not allow or ratefie that successiō; but of a king, made him a Tetrarch, assig­ning to him onlie the fourth part of that dominion, which his father had before. And then againe, after nine yeares space, tooke that away in like maner, with the greatest dishonour he could deuise, sea­zing vpon al his treasure and riches by way of confiscation, and condemning his person to perpetual banishment, wherin he died most miserablie, in Vienna in France.

Not long after this, the second sonne 3. Herod An­tipas. of Herode the first, named Herode Anti­pas, Tetrarch of Galiley, who put S. Ihon Baptist to death, and scorned Iesus before his passion, (wherat both him self and Ioseph. l. 18 antiq. c. 9. l. 2. de bel. c. 8 Herodias his concubine were present;) was deposed also by Caius th' Emperour (being accused by Agrippa, his nearest kinseman,) and most contumeliously sent in exile; first, to Lions in France, and after that, to the most desert and inhabitable places of Spaine, wher he with Herodias wandered vp and doune, in extreme cala­mitie, so long as they liued; and finally en­ded their daies, abandonned of al men. In which miserie also it is recorded, that the Niceph. l. 1. cap. 20. daunsing daughter of Herodias, who had in her Iolitie demaunded Iohn Baptists [Page 276] Head, being on a certaine time enforced 4. Herodias daughter. to passe ouer a frosen riuer, the yse brake, and she in her fall, had her head cut of by the same yse, without hurting the rest of her body, to the great admiration of al the lookers on.

The like euent had an other of He­rode 5 Herode Agrippa. familie, named Herod Agrippa, th' ac­culer of the fornamed Herod the Tetrarch; who in his great glorie and triumphe, hauing yut to death S. Iames the brother of S. Ihon Euangelist, and imprisoned S. Peter: was soone after in a publique as­semblie of Princes and Nobles, at Caesa­rea; striken from heauen, with a most hor­rible disease, wherby his bodie putrified, Act. 12. Ioseph. 1. 19. antiq. c. 7. and was eaten with vermine, as both S. Luke reporteth, and Iosephus confirmeth. And the same Iosephus, with no small Lib. 18. c. 7. maruaile in hym self, declareth; that at the verie time when he wrote his storie, (which was aboute 70 yeares after the death of Herod the first:) the whole pro­genie and ofspring, kinred, and familie of the said Herod, (which he sayeth was ex­ceeding great, by reason he had niene The stocke of Herode soone extin­guished. wiues together, with many children, bro­thers, sisters, nephews, and kinsefolke,) were all extinguished in most miserable sorte, and gaue a testimonie (saith Iose­phus) to the world, of the most vaine confidence, that men doe put in humane felicitie. The pu­nishmēt of Romanes.

And as thes punishements lighted openlie, vpon Iesus professed enimies in [Page 277] Iurie: So escaped not also the Romans their chastissement; I meane such, as espe­ciallie had their handes in persecution of hym, or of his followers after hym. For 5. Pilate. first, of Pontius Pilate, that gaue sentence of death against hym, we reade, that after great disgrace receyued in Iurie; he was [...]. lib. 7. hist. Euseb l. 2. c. 7. hist. sent home into Italie, and ther by mani­fold disfauours shewed vnto him by the Emperour his maister, sel into such despe­ration, as he slewe him self with his owne handes. And secondlie, of the very Empe­rours them selues, who liued from Tybe­rius (vnder whom Iesus suffred,) vnto Constātine the great, vnder whom Chri­stian religion tooke dominion ouer the world, (which contained the space of three hūdreth yeares;) very few or none, escaped the manifest scourges of Gods dreadful iustice, shewed vpon them at the knitting vp of their daies. For examples Tertul. in Apolog. sake; Tyberius, that permitted Christians to liue freely, and made a lawe against their molestation, as before hath bene shewed, died peaceably in his bedde. But 6. Calligula. Caligula that folowed him, for his con­tempt shewed against al diuine power, in making him self a God; was soone after murdered by the cōspiracie of his dearest friendes. Nero also, who first of al other 7. Nero. beganne persecution against the Chri­stians; within fewe monethes after he had put S. Peter and S. Paul to death in Rome, (hauing murdered in like manner his owne mother, brother, wife, & maister;) [Page 278] was vpon the sudaine, from his glorious estate and maiestie, throwen doune into such horrible distresse and confusion, in the sight of al men; as being condemned by the Senate, to haue his heade thrust into a pillorie, and ther most ignominiously to be whipped to death: was cōstrained, for auoiding th' execution of that terrible sentence, to massacre him self with his owne handes, by the assistance of such as were dearest vnto him.

The like might be shewed in the tra­gical 8. Manie Em­perous that died mise­rablic. endes of Galba, Otho, Vitellius, Do­mitian, Commodus, Pertinax, Iulian, Ma­crinus, Antoninus, Alexander, Maximi­nus, Gordianus, Aurelianus, Decius, Gal­lus, Volutianus, Aemilianus, Valerianus, Galienus, Caius, Carinus, Maximianus, Maxentius, Licinius, and others, whos miserable deathes, a noble man & Coun­cellour wel neare a thousand yeares past, Euagrius Scolast. l. 3. hist. ca. 41. did gather against Zosimus a heathen writer, to shew therby the pouerful hand of Iesus vpon his enemies; adding further more, that since the time of Constantine, whiles Emperours haue bene Christians, few or no such examples can be shewed, except it be vpon Iulian th' Apostata, Va­lens the Arrian heretique, or some other of like detestable and notorious wicked­nes. And thus much of particuler men chastised by Iesus.

But if we desire to haue a full example 9. The cha­stisment of Hierusalem and of the Iuishe peo­ple. of his iustice, vpon a whole Nation toge­ther: let vs consider what befell Hierusa­lem [Page 279] and the people of Iurie, for their bar­barous crueltie practised vpon him, in his death and Passion. And trulie, if we beleeue Iosephus and Philo the Iuishe hi­storiographers, (who liued either with Christ or immediatelie after him;) It can hardlie be expressed by the tongue or penne of mā, what insufterable calamities and miseries, were inflicted to that people (presentelie vpon th' Ascension of Iesus,) by Pilat their gouernour, vnder Tyberius th' Emperour; and then againe by Petro­nius, vnder Caligula; and after that, by Cumanus, vnder Claudius; and lastlie, by Festus & Albinus, vnder Nero. Through Ioseph. lib. 19. antiq. li. 2. & 3. de bel. Iudai. Philo in Flacco & l. 2. de leg. Cornel. Tac. lib. 12. whos cruelties that nation was enforced finallie to rebell and take armes against the Roman Empire, which was the cause of their vtter ruine and extirpation by Titus and Vespasian. At what time, besides the ouerthrowe of their Citie, burnīg of their Temple, and other infinite distresses, which Iosephꝰ an eye-witnes protesteth, that no speech or discourse humane can declare: the same authour recordeth eleuē hundreth thousand persons to haue bene slaine, and foure skore and seuentiene thousand takē aliue, who were either put to death afterward ī publique triumphes, or solde openly for bondslaues into all partes of the world.

And in this vniuersal calamitie of the Iuishe Nation, being the most notorious and grieuous that euer happened to Na­tion or people, before or after them, (for [Page 280] the Romanes neuer practised the like vpō Hovve Christ his death vvas punished vvith like circūstances vpon the Ievves. others) it is singulerly to be obserued, that in the same time and place, in which they had put Iesus to death before; that is, in the feast of their Paschal, whē their whole Natiō was assembled at Hierusalem, from al partes, Prouinces, & Countries of the earth: they receyued this their must pitti­ful subuersion, and that by the handes of the Romane Caelar, to whom by publique crie, they had appealed frō Iesus but a litle before. Yea, further it is obserued & noted, that as they apprehended Iesus, & made th' ētrāce to his passiō vpō the mount Oli­uet: sp Titus (as Iosephus writeth,) vpon Ioseph. li. 5. de bel. c. 8. the same mounte planted his first siege for their final destruction. And as they ledde Iesus from Caiphas to Pilate, afflicting him in their presence: so now were them­selues ledde vp and doune, from Iohn to Simon, (two tyrantes that had vsurped Cap. 27. dominion within the Citie,) and were scourged and tormented before their tri­bunal seates. Againe, as they had caused Iesus to be scoffed, beaten, and vilanously entreated by the souldiours, in Pilates Pa­lace: so were now their owne prīcipal ru­lers & noble mē, (as Ioseph' noteth,) most scornesully abused, beaten, and crucisied by the same souldiours. Which later point of crucising, or villanous putting to death vpō the Crosse, was begunne to be practi­sed by the Romans, vpon the Iuishe Gen­trie, immediatelie after Christes death and not before. And now at this tyme of [Page 281] the warre, Iosephus affirmeth, that ī some one daie, 500 of his nation were taken & put to this opprobrious kinde of punishe­ment; in so much, that for the greate mul­titude (saith he,) Nec locus suff [...]eret Crucibus, Lib. 5. 2e bel. c. 28. nec crucis corporib [...] that is; ‘nether the place was sufficient to containe so many Cros­ses, as the Romans sett vp; nor the Crosses sufficient to sustaine so many bodies, as they murdered by that torment.’

This dreadful and vnspeakeable mise­rie, fell vpō the Iewes, about fortie yeares after Iesus Ascention, when they had A maruei­lous proui­dēce of God for deliue­ring the Christians that vvere in Ierusalē at the tyme of the de­struction. shewed them selues most obstinate and obdurate against his doctrine, deliuered vnto them, not only by him self, but also by his Disciples; of which disciples they had slaine now S. Stephen and S. Iames, and had driuen into banishment, both S. Peter and S. Paul, and other that had prea­ched vnto them. To which later two Apostles, (I meane S. Peter & S. Paul,) our Sauiour Iesus appeared a litle before their martirdomes in Rome, (as Lactātius wri­teth,) and shewed, that within three or foure yeares after their deathes, he was to take reuenge vpon their Nation, by the vtter destruction of Ierusalem, and of that generation. Which secrete aduise, the said Lactantius affirmeth, that Peter and Lib. 4. di­uin. Inst. ca. 21. Euseb. li. 3. hist. cap. 5. Niceph. c. 3. Paul reueyled to other Christians in Iu­rie; wherby it came to passe, (as Eusebius also and other authours doe mention,) that al the Christians liuing in Ierusalem, departed thence, not long before the [Page 282] siege begāne, to a certaine towne named Pella, beyond Iordan, which was assi­gned vnto them for that purpose, by Ie­sus himself, for that it being in the domi­nion of Agrippa, (who stoode with the Romans,) it remained in peace and safe­tie, while al Iurie besides was brought to desolation.

This then was the prouidence of God for the punishment of the Iewes at that time. And euer after, their estate declined The Iuishe miseries after the destruction of Hierusa­lem. from worse to worse; and their miseries daily multiplied throughout the world. Wherof he that wil see a ver lamentable narration; let him read but the last booke only of Iosephus historie de Bello Judaico, wherin is reported besides other thinges, that after the warre was ended, and al publique slaughter ceased: Titus sent sixtiē thousand Iewes, as a present to his father to Rome, ther to be putt to death in diuers and sundrie maners. Others he applied to be Spectacles for pastyme to the Ro­mans that were present with him; wher­of Iosephus saieth, that he sawe with his Ioseph. li. 7. de bel. c. 20 & 21. owne eyes, two thousand & fiue hundreth murdered and consumed in one day, by fight and combat among them selues, and with wilde beastes at the Emperours ap­pointement. Others were assigned in An­tioche and other great Cities, to serue for faggots in their famous bonefires at times of triumphe. Others were solde to be bondslaues: others cōdemned to digge & shew stones for euer. And this was the [Page 283] ende of that warre and desolation.

After this againe vnder Traiane th' Em­perour, ther were so infinite a number of The final desolatiō of the Iuishe Nation. Iewes slaine and made awaye by Marcus Turbo in Africa, and Lucius Quintus in the East: as al histories agree, that it is im­possible to expresse the multitude. But yet more wonderful is it, which the same hi­storians doe reporte; that in the 18. yeare of Adrian th' Emperour, one Iullus Seue­rus being sent to extinguishe all the rem­nant of the Iuishe generation: destroied Oros. lib. 7. cap. 13. Ariston pel laeus in hist. Euseb. lib. 4. cap. 8. Niccph. lib. 3. c. 24. in smal time 980 Townes and villages within that countrie, and slewe fiue hun­dreth and fowre skore thousand of that bloode and nation in one daye: at which tyme also he beate downe the Citie of Hierusalem in such sorte; as he lest not one stone standing vpon an other of their aunciēt buildinges; but caused some parte therof to be reedefied againe, and inhabi­ted by only Gentiles. He chāged the name of the Citie, and called it Th' Em­perours name, vvas Aclius Adrianus. AFLIA, after th' Emperours name. He droue al the pro­geny and ofspring of the Iewes furth of all thos countries, with a perpetual lawe confirmed by the Emperour, that they should neuer returne; no, nor so much as looke backe from any highe or eminent place, to that countrie againe. And this was done to that Iuishe Natiō by the Ro­man Emperours, for accomplishing that demaund, which their prīcipal elders had made not longe before to Pilate the Ro­mau Magistrate, concerning Iesus most [Page 284] iniurious death, cryinge out with one cō ­sent and voice; to wit: Let his blood be vpon vs, and vpon our posteritie. Mat. 25.

AND HEERIN ALSO, (I meane in the most wonderful & notorious cha­stisment, THE. 7. Conside­ration. THE ful­filling of Iesus pro­pheties. or rather reprobation of this Iuishe people, which of all the world was Gods peculier before,) is sett out vnto vs, as it were in a glasse, the seuenth and last pointe, which we mentioned in the beginning of this section: to witt, the fulfilling of such speeches & propheties, as Iesus vttered when he was vpon earth: as namely at one time, after a long and vehement commination, made to the Scri­bes, Pharisees, and principal men of that Nation, (in which he repeateth eight se­ueral times the dreadful threat woe:) he concludeth finally, that al the iust blood, iniuriouslie shedde, from the first Martyr Abel, should be reuenged verie shortelie Mat. 23. vpon that generation. And in the same place, he menaceth the populous Citie of Ierusalē, that itshould be made desert. And in an other place, he assureth thē, that one Luc. 21. stone should not be left standing therof vpon an other. And yet futther he pro­nounced vpon the same Citie, thes words. The daies shal come vpon thee, and thy enemies shal enuiron thee vvith a vval, and shall besiege Luc. 19. thee; they shall straiten the on euery side, and shal beate the to the grounde, and thy children in thee, Iesus spee­ches of Ie­rusalem. And yet more particulerly, he foretelleth the verie signes, wherby his disciples should perceyue when the time in deed [Page 285] was come; vsing this speeche vnto them. VVhen you shal see Ierusalem besieged vvith an Luc. 21. army; then knovve ye, that her disolation is at hand; for that thes are the daies of reuenge, to the ende al may be fulfiled vvhich is vvritten. Great distresse shal fal vpon this earth, and vengeance vpon this people. They shalbe slaine by dint of the svvord, and shal be led as slaues into al coun­tries. And Jerusalem shalbe trodden vnder seete by the Gentiles, vntil the times of Nations be accomplished.

This foretold Iesus of the miserie that was to fal vpon Ierusalem, and vpon that The circū ­stance of the time, vvhen Iesus spake his vvordes, and vvhen they vvere vvriten. people (by the Romanes and other Gen­tiles,) when the Iewes seemed to be in most securitie and greatest amitie with the Romanes, (as also they were, when the same thinges were writē,) and conse­quently, at that time, they might seeme in all humane reason, to haue lesse cause thē euer before, to misdoubt such calamities. And yet how certaine and assured fore­knowlege, (and as it were most sensible forefeeling) Iesus had of thes miseries, he declared, not only by thes expresse words Luc. 19. and by their euēt: but also by thos pittiful teares he shed vpon sight and considera­tion of Hierusalem, and by the lamentable speeche he vsed to the women of that Citie, who wept for him at his Passion, persuading them, to weepe rather for thē selues and for their children, (in respect Luc. 23. of the miseries to followe,) then for him.

Which wordes and predictions of Iesus, together with sundrie other his speeches, [Page 286] fore shewing so particularlie the immi­nent calamities of that Nation, (and that, as I haue said, at such time, when in hu­mane discourse ther could be no proba­bilitie therof;) when a certaine heathen Chronicler and Mathematique, named Phleg. Thralli. lib. annal. Phlegon, about an hundreth yeares after Christs departure, had diligently consi­dered, hauing sene the same also in his dayes most exactelie fulfilled, (for he was seruant to Adrianus th' Emperour, by whos commandement, as hath bene said before, the final subuersion of the Iuishe The testi­monie of a beathē, for the fulfil­ling of Christs pro­pheties. nation was brought to passe:) this Phlegō (I say) though a Pagan, yet vpon conside­ration of thes euentes, and others that he saw, (as th' extreme persecution of Chri­stians fortold by Christ and the like:) he pronounced, that neuer any man foretold things so certainlie to come, or that so preciselie were accomplished, as were the predictions and propheties of Iesus. And this testimonie of Phlegon, was al­leaged and vrged for Christians, again't Orig. lib. 2. cūt. Celsum sub initiū. one Celsus a heathen Philosopher and Epicure, by the famous learned Origen, euen the very next age after it was writtē by th' authour; so that of the truth of this allegation, ther can be no doubt or que­stion at all.

And now albeit thes predictions and Other pro­pheties of Iesus fulfil­led to his Disciples. propheties, concerning the punishment and reprobation of the Iewes, fulfilled so euidently in the sight of al the world, might be a sufficient demonstration, of Ie­sus [Page 287] for knowlege in affaires to come: yet are ther many other thinges besides fore­shewed by him, which fel out as exactly, as did thes; notwithstanding that by no learning, mathematical reason, or humane cōiecture, they were or might be forsene. As for example; the foretelling of his owne death; the maner, time, and place therof: as also the person that should betraie him, together with his irrepen­tantende. The flight, feare, and scandal of his disciples, albeit they had promissed & protested the contrarie. The three seueral denials of Peter. The particuler time of his owne resurrection, and Ascension. The sending of the Holy-Ghost; and many other the like predictions, propheties, & promisses, which to his Apostles, Disci­ples, and folowers, that heard them vt­tered, and left them written before they fel out, and saw them afterwarde accom­plished; and who by the falsehood ther­of should haue receyued greatest dōmage of all other mē, if they had not bene true: to thes men (I saie) they were most eui­dent proofes of Iesus diuine prescience in matters that should ensue.

But yet for that an Infidell, (with whom onlie I suppose my self to deale in this place,) may in thes and the like thin­ges, find perhapes some matter of cauilla­tion; and saie, that thes propheties of Ie­sus were recorded by our Euangelistes, Propheties fulfilled in the sight of Gentiles. after the particularities therin prophe­tied were effectuated, and not before; and [Page 288] consequentlie, that they might be forged: I wil alleage certaine other euentes, both foretolde and registred, before they came to passe; and diuulged by publique wri­tinges in the face of al the worlde, when ther was smal semblance that euer the same should take effect. Such were the par­ticuler 1 foretelling of the kinde & maner of S. Peters death, whiles yet he liued: The peculier and differēt maner of S. Iohn 2 th' Euāgelists ending, from the rest of the Apostles: The prerogatiue giuen to Peter 3 aboue the rest, that his Faith and Chaire should neuer faile, (which we see mira­culouslie verefied euen vntil this day; the successions of all other Apostles hauing failed and his not. The forshewing & des­cribinge to his disciples, the most extreme 4 and cruel persecutions, that should insue vnto Christians for his sake, (a thing at that time not probable in reason, for that the Romanes permitted the exercise of al kindes of religions:) And that notwith­standing 5 in all thes pressures and intolle­rable afflictie is, his faithfull followers should not shrincke, but holde out, and daily encrease in zeale, fortitude, and number; and finallie, should atchiue the victorie and conquest of al the world: a thīg much more vnlikly, at that daye, & so farre passing al humane probabilitie; as no capacitie, reason, or cōcept of man, might reach or attaine the foresight therof.

And with this wil we cōclude our third and last part of the general diuision set [Page 289] doune in the beginning, concerning the groundes and proofes of Christian reli­gion.

The Conclusion. Sect. 4.

BY AL that hytherto hath bene saide, The summe of the sor­mer three Sections. we haue declared and made manifest vnto the, (gentle reader,) three thinges of great importance. First, that from the beginning and creation of the worlde, 1 ther hath bene promised in all times and ages, a Messias or Saueour of mankinde, in whom and by whom, al Nations should be blessed; as also, that the particuler time, maner, and circumstance of his cōming; together with the qualitie of his person, purpose, doctrine, life, death, re­surrection, and Ascension, were in like maner by the prophets of God, most eui­dently forshewed. Secōdly; that the very 2 same particulers and special points, that were dessigned and set doune by the said Prophets, were also fulfilled most exact­ly with their circumstances, in the per­son and actions of Iesus our Saueour. Thirdly, that besides the accomplishment 3 of all the for said propheties; there were giuen by Iesus, many signes, manifestatiōs, and most infallible arguments of his Dei­tie and omnipotēt puissance, after his As­cention or departure from al humane and corporal conuersation in this world. By al which waies, meanes, arguments, and [Page 290] proofes; & by ten thousand more, which to the tongue or penne of man are inex­plicable, the Christian minde remaineth setled, and most firmely grounded in the vndoubted belief of his religion; hauing besides al other thinges, euidēces, certain­ties, and internal comfortes and assuran­ces, which are infinite: thes eight demon­stratiue Eight rea­sons. reasons and persuasions which ensue, for his more ample and aboundant satisfaction therin.

First; that it was impossible that so many 1. The pro­pheties. thinges, should be foretold so precisely, with so many particularities, in so many ages, by so different persons al of sancti­tie, with so great concorde, consent, and vnitie, and that so long before hand, but by the spirite of God alone, that only hath foreknowlege of future euents. Se­condly; 2. The fulfil­linge. that it could not possibly be, that so many thinges, so difficult and strange, with al their particularities and circum­stances, should be so exactly and preciselie fulfilled, but in him alone of whom they were truly meant. Thirdly; that it can no waies be imagined, that God would euer 3. Gods assi­stance. haue concurred with Iesus doinges, or assisted hym, aboue all course of nature, with so aboundant miracles, as the Gen­tiles doe confesse that he wrought, yf he had bene a Seducer, or taken vpon hym to set foorth a false doctrine. Fourthly; if Ie­sus 4. Iesus doc­trine. had intended to deceaue and seduce the world; he would neuer haue propo­sed a doctrine so difficult and repugnant [Page 291] to al sensualitie; but rather would haue taught things pleasant and grateful to mans voluptuous delight, as Mahomet did after him. Nether could the nature of mā, haue euer so affectuously embrased such austeritie, without the assistance of some diuine and supernatural power. Fistly; 5. Iesus ma­ner of tea­chinge. for that Iesus being poorely borne and vnlettred, as by his aduersaries confessiō doth appeare, and that in such an age and tyme, when all worldly learning was in most florishing estate: he could neuer pos­sibly but by diuine power, haue attained to such most exquisite knowlege in all kinde of learning, as to be able to decide all the doubtes and controuersies of Phi­losophers before him, as he did; laving doune more plainly, distinctly, & perspi­cuously, the pithe of all humane and di­uine learning, within the compasse of three yeares teaching, (and that to audi­tours of so great simplicitie;) then did al the Sages of the world, vntil that [...], in so much that euen then, the most vnlear­ned Christian of that time, could say more in certaintie of truth, concerning the knowledge of God, the Creation of the world, th' ende of man, the reward of ver­tue, the punishment of vice, th' immortali­tie and rest of our soule after this life, and in other such highe poinctes and myste­ries of true philosophie: then could the most famous and learned of al the Genti­les, that had for so many ages before, bea­ten their braines in contention about the [Page 292] same.

Sixtlie, if Iesus had not meant plainly 6. Iesus life and maner of procee­dinge. and sincerely in al his doinges, according as he professed; he would neuer haue takē so seuere a course of life to himself, neither would he haue refused al temporal digni­ties and aduancemēts as he did; he would neuer haue chosen to die so opprobriously in the sight of al men, nor made election of Apostles and Disciples so poore and contemptible in the world; nor if he had; would euer worldly men haue folowed him in so great multitudes, with so great seruour, zeale, constancy, and perseuerāce vnto death Seuenthly, we see that the first 7. The begin­ners & first publishers of Christian religion. beginners and founders of Christian re­ligion left by Iesus, were a multitude of simple and vnskilful persons, vnapt to de­ceyue or deuise any thing of them selues. They beganne against al probabilitie of mans reason: they went forward against the streame and strength of al the world: they continued and encreased aboue humane possibilitie: they perseuered in tormētes and afflictions insufferable: they wrought miracles aboue the reache and compasse of mans habilitie: they ouer­threw Idolatrie, that then possessed the world, and confounded al powers infer­nal, by the only name and vertue of their maister. They saw the propheties of Iesus fulfilled, and al his diuine speeches and predictions come to passe. They sawe the punishmēt of their enimies and chief im­nugners to fal vpon them, in their dayes. [Page 293] They sawe euery daie whole Prouinces, Countries, and kingdomes conuerted to their faith. And finally, the whole Ro­mane Empire and world besides, to subiect it self to the lawe, obediēce, and Ghospel of their maister.

Lastly; among all other reasons and argumentes, this may be one most manifest 8. The pre­sent state of Ievves. vnto vs; that wheras by many testimonies and expresse propheties of the olde Testa­ment it is affirmed, that the people of Is­rael should abandone, persecute, and put to death the true Messias at his comming, as before hath bene shewed; and for that facte, should it self be abandoned of God, and brought to ruine and dispersion ouer al the world; (wherin according to the wordes of Osee; they shal sitt for a long time, Osee 3. vvithout king, vvithout prince, vvithout sacri­fice, vvithout Altar, vvithout Ephode, or images; and after this againe shal returne and seeke their God, in the last daies:) we see in this age the verie same particularities fulfilled in that Nation, and so to haue continued now for thes fiftiene hundreth yeares: that is; we see the Iuishe people abandoned and afflicted aboue al Nations of the world; dispersed in seruilitie throughout al cor­ners of other Nations; without dignitie or reputation; without king, prince, or common wealth, of them selues; prohibi­ted by al Princes, both Christian & other, to make their sacrifices, wher they inha­bite; depriued of al meanes to attaine to knowledge in good literature, wherby [Page 294] daily they fal into more grosse ignorance and absurdities against common reason, in their later doctrine; then did the most barbarous infidels that euer were; hauing lost al sense and feeling in spiritual affai­res; al knowledge and vnderstāding in ce­lestial thinges for the life to come; ha­uing among them no Prophet; no graue teacher; no man directed by Gods holy spirite: and finally; as men forlorne and filled with al kinde of miserie, doe both by their inward and external calamities, preach, denounce, & testifie to the world, that Iesus whom they Crucified, was the only true Messias and Saucour of man­kinde, and that his blood, (as they requi­red,) lieth heauilie vpon their generatiō for euer.

Wherfore to conclude this whole The cōclu­sion of the Chapter vvith an admonishe­ment. discourse and treatise of the proofes and euidences of our Christian religion; seing that by so manifolde and inuincible de­mōstratiōs, it hath bene declared & laied before our eyes, that Iesus is the only true Saucour and redeemer of the world, and consequently, that his seruice and re­ligion is the only waye and meane to please almightie God, and to attaine euer­lasting happines; ther remaineth now to consider, that the same Iesus, which by so many Prophets was promised to be a Sa­ucour; was also foretolde by the self same Prophetes, that he should be a Iudge and Iesus shal be also a Iudge. examiner of al our actions. Which later point, no one Prophet that hath for­shewed [Page 295] his cōming, hath omitted seriously to inculcate vnto vs. No, not the Sibyls them selues, who in euery place where they describe the most gracious cōming of the Virgins sonne, doe also annexe therunto his dreadful appearance at the day of iudgmēt; especially in thos famous Acrosticke verses, wherof there hath Apud Euse. lib. 4 in vit. Const. in si. bene so much mention before; the whole discours vpon the words, Iesus, Christ, the sonne of God, Saucour, and Crosse, containeth nothing els, but a large and ample des­cription of his most terrible cōming in­fire and flame, and conflagration of the world at that dreadful daie, to take ac­compt of all mēs wordes, actions, and co­gitations.

To which description of thes Pagane Prophetes, is consonāt the whole tenour 1. Reg. 2. Psal. 95. Esa. 2. 13. 26. 27. 30 Iere. 30. Dan. 7. Sopho. 1. Malac. 4. Mat. 12. 13. 16. 24. 25. Mar. 13. Luc. 17. Rom. 2. 14. 1. Cor. 15. 2. Cor. 5. 1. Thess. 4. 5. and cōtext of the olde Bible, foreshewing euery where, the dreadful Maiestie, ter­rour, and seueritie of the Messias at that day. The new Testament also, which ten­deth wholy to comfort and solace man­kinde, and hath the name of Euangile, in respect of the ioyful newes which it brought to the world; omitteth not to put vs continually in minde of this point. And to that ende, both Iesus him self, amiddest al his sweet and comfortable speeches with his Disciples, did admo­nishe them often of this last daie; and his Apostles, Euangelistes, & Disciples after him, repeated, iterated, and vrged this im­portant consideration, in al their wordes [Page 296] 2. Thess. 1 1. Tit. 2. 2. Pet. 3. Heb. 9. Iud. 14. Apoc. 1. and writinges.

Wherfore as by the name and cogita­tion of a Saueour, we are greatly stirred vp to ioye, alacritie, confidence, and con­solation: so by this admonishment of Gods Saints, and of Iesus himself, that he is to be our Iudge, and seuere examiner of al the minutes and moments of our life: we are to conceyue iust feare and dread of this his second comming. And as by the whole former treatise we haue bene An illatiō vpon the premisses vvith an exhortatiō. instructed, that the only waie to saluatiō is by the profession of Iesus religion: so by this accompt that shalbe demanded at our handes at the last daie, by the Authour and first institutour of this religion, we are taught, that onles we be true Christiās indeed, and doe performe such duties as this law and religion prescribeth vnto vs; so farre of shal we be from receyuing any benefite by the name; as our iudgment shal be the more grieuous, and our final calamitie more intollerable. For which cause, I would in sincere charitie, exhorte euery man, that by the former discourse hath receyued any light, and is confirmed in his iudgment concerning the truth of Christian religion; to employ his whole endeuours for the attainemēt of the fruite and benefite therof: which is, by being a true and real Christian: for that Christ him self foresignified, that many should take the name without commoditie of their profession. And to the ende ech man may the better knowe or coniecture of [Page 297] him self, whether he be in the right way or no, and whether he perfourme in deede the dutie required of a true Christian: I haue thought conuenient, to adioyne this chapter next following of that matter, and therin to declare the particuler pointes belonging to that profession. Which being knowen, it shall be easie for euerie one that is not ouer partial, or wilfullie bent to deceaue hym self, to discerne of his owne estate, and of the course and waye that he holdeth. Which is a highe pointe of wisdome for all men to doe while they haue tyme; least at the later daye, we hauing passed ouer our li­ues in the bare name onlie of Christiani­tie, without the substance: doe finde our selues in the number of thos most vnfortunate people, who shall crye Lord, Lord, and receaue no comfort by that confession.

HOW A MAN MAY IVDGE OR DISCERNE OF HIM SELF, VVHETHER HE BE a true Christian or not. VVith a declaration of the tvvo partes be­longing to that profession; vvhiche are, beleefe and lyse. CHAPT. V.

AS IN humane lear­ning and sciences of this worlde, af­ter declaratiō made of the vtilitie, pos­sibilitie, certaintie, conueniencie, and other qualities, cō ­mendations, and proprieties therof; the next point is, to shew the meanes and way wherby to attaine the same: so much more, in this diuine & heauenly doctrine of Christian religion (which concerneth our soule and euerlasting saluation;) for that we haue shewed before, not only the most vndoubted truth wherupon it stan­deth, but also that the knowledge therof [Page 299] is so absolutelie necessary, as there is no other name or profession vnder heauen, wherby mankinde can be saued, but only Act. 4. this of Iesus: it foloweth by order of good consequence, that we should treate Th' effect of this chap­ter. in this place, how a man may attaine the fruite of this doctrine: that is to saye; how he may come to be a good Christian; or if alredy he professe that name; how he may examine or make trial of him self, whe­ther he be so in deed or not. Which exa­mination (to speake in briefe,) consisteth wholie in consideration of thes two Tvvo pointes. pointes. First; whether he beleeue vnfai­nedly the total summe of documēts & my­steries, 1 left by Iesus & his disciples in the Catholique Church; and secondlie, whe­ther 2 he performe in sinceritie the rules and preceptes of life, prescribed vnto Christians for direction of their actions. So that on thes two points we are to be­stowe our whole speeche in this chapter.

AND FOR THE FIRST, how to THE. 1. parte, cō ­cerning beleefe. examine the truth of our beleefe; it would be ouer tedious to lay doune euery particuler waie, that might be assigned for discussion therof: for that it would bring in the contention of al times, aswel auncient as present, about cōtrouersies in Christian faith, which hath bene impug­ned from age to age, by the seditious in­struments of Christs infernal enemie. And therfore, as well in respecte of the lēgth, (wherof this place is not capable,) as also for that of purpose I doe auoide al [Page 300] dealing with matters of controuersie, within the cōpasse of this worke: I meane only at this time, for the comfort of such as are alredy in the right waie, and for some light to others, who perhaps of sim­plicitie may walke awrie; to let doune with as great breuitie as possibly may be, some few general notes or obseruations, for their better helpe in this behalfe.

In which great affaire of our faith and beleefe, (wherin consisteth as well the ground and foundatiō of our eternal wel­fare, as also the fruite & entire vtilitie of Christs comming into this world;) it is to be considered, that God could not of his infinite wisdome, (forseeing al thigs, and times to come;) nor euer would of his vnspeakable goodnes, (desiring our The mat­ters of faith and beleefe easie amōg Christians. saluatiō as he doth;) leaue vs in this life, without most sure, certaine, and cleare euidencie in this matter: and consequētly, we must imagine, that all our errours cō ­mitted herein (I meane in matters of faith and beleefe among Christians) doe pro­ceede rather of finne, negligence, wilful­nes, or inconsideration in our selues; then either of difficultie or doubtfulnes in the meanes left vnto vs for discerning the same, or of the want of Gods holie assi­stance to that effect, if we would with humilitie accept therof.

This Esay made plaine, when he pro­phetied of this perspicuitie; that is, of this most excellent priuilege in Christian re­ligion, so many hundred yeares before [Page 301] Christ was borne. For after that in diuers chapters he had declared the glorious cō ­ming of Christ in signes and miracles, as also the multitude of Gētiles that should imbrace his doctrine, together with the ioye and exultation of their cōuersion: he forsheweth presentlie the wōderful pro­uidence of God also, in prouidinge for Christians so manifest a waye of directiō for their faith and religion; as the most simple and vnlearned man in the world, should not be able (but of wilfulnes) to goe astraye therin. His wordes are thes, directed to the Gentiles. Take comfort and Esay. 35. feare not: beholde your God shall come and saue you. Then shall the eyes of the blinde be opened, and the eares of the deafe shalbe restored &c. And there shalbe a path & vvaye; and it shalbe called The direct holie vvay of the Ca­tholique Church. THE HOLIE WAYE: & it shalbe vnto you so direct a vvay, as fooles shall not be able to erre therin. By which wordes we see, that among other rare benefites that Christes people were to receaue by his comminge; this should be one, and not the least; that after his holie doctrine once published and receyued, it should not be easie for the weakest in capacitie or learning that might be, (whom Esay here noteth by the name of fooles,) to runne awrie in matters of their beliefe; so plaine, cleare, & euidēt, should the waye for trial therof be made.

Here hence it is, that S. Paul pronoun­ceth so peremptorilie of a contētious and heretical man, that he is damned by the testi­menie Tit. [...]. [Page 302] of his ovvne iudgement or conscience; for that he hath abandoned this common, di­rect, and publique waye, which all men might see, and hath deuised particuler pa­thes and turninges to hymself. See S. Au­gust. tract. 1. in epist. Iohan. & li. de vn. Eccl. cont. Peti­lian. ca. 14. Herehēce it is, that th' auncient fathers of Christe primatiue Church, disputinge against the same kynde of people; defended alwayes that their errour was of malice and wil­ful blindnes, and not of ignorance; apply­inge thos wordes of prophetie vnto thē, they that savve me, rannc out from me. That is, saith S. Augustine, ‘they which sawe and Psal. 30. beheld the Catholique Church of Christ, Concion. 2. in Psal. 30. (which is the plaine waye denoted byEsay, and the most eminēt mountaine des­cribed by Daniel; as also by Esay hymself in an other place, & expounded by Christ Dan. 2. Esa. 2. Math. 5. in S. Mathewes Ghospel:) this Churche (saith he) wicked heretiques beholding, (for that no mā can auoide the sight ther­of, but he that most obstinatelie will shut his eyes;) yet for hatred and malice, doe they runne out of the same, and doe raise vp heresies and schismes against th' vnitie therof.’

Thus much saith this holie doctour: by whose discourse we maye perceyue, that the plaine and direct waye mentioned by Esay, wherin no simple or ignorant man can erre, is the general bodie of Christes visible Church vpon earth, planted by his Apostles throughout al countries & Na­tions, and cōtinuinge by succession, vnto the worldes ende. In which Church, who­soeuer [Page 303] remaineth, & beleeueth al thinges that are taught therin; cā not possiblie fall The vvay of auoiding errour in beliefe. into errour of faith. For that this church or vniuersal bodie, is guided by Christes spirit, who is the heade therof, and so no waies subiect or withi cōpasse of errour. For which cause, S. Paul nameth it, the pil­lar and sirmament of truth. And the same 1. Tim. 3. Church, is so manifest and euident, (and shalbe so to the worldes ende, as the same Aug. tract. in epist. Iohā. Chri, hom. 4. de verb. Isai. vidi Dn̄m. learned Doctour, and other his equals doe proue:) that it is more easie to fynde it out; then it is to see the Sunne or Moone, when it shy neth brightest, or to beholde the greatest hill or mountaine in the world. For as S. Augustines wordes are, ‘albeit particuler hilles in one countrie, may be vnknowen in an other; as Olym­pus in Greece, may be vnknowen in Af­frica, and the mountaine Giddaba of Af­frike, may be vnknowen in Greece: yet (saith this holie father) a mountaine that passeth throughout all Countries and fil­leth vp the whole world (as Daniel pro­phetied Dan. 2. Christes Church should doe;) can not be but apparent to the sight of al men, and consequentlie must needes be knowē of al men, but onlie of such, as wilfullie doe shut their eyes from sight therof.’

For declaration of which reason, ar­gument, and discourse of Holy-Fathers, A declara­tion of the fathers ar­gument. Mat. 5. 18 20. (being also the discourse of Christ hym self in the Ghospel, when he remitteth mē to the visible Church, that is placed on an hill;) it is to be noted, that in the time frō [Page 304] Christes ascension, vntil the 14. yeare of Neroes raigne, who first of the Romane Emperours, beganne open persecution a­gainst the proceedinges of Christians, & put to death S. Peter and S. Paul: In this time (I saie) of tolleration vnder the Ro­mane Empire, (which cōtained the space of 37. yeares;) Christes Apostles and Dis­ciples had preached and planted one vni­forme Ghospell thoroughout all the worlde, as both by their actes and gestes recorded, as also by the peculier testimo­nie of S. Paul to the Romanes may ap­peare. Rom. 1. Which thing being done most mi­raculoussie, by the power and vertue of their Maister; and Bishops, pastours, and other gouernours, being ordained in eue­ry Church and countrie, for guiding and directing the same by them selues & their successours to the worlds end: this (I say) being once brought to passe; and the litle stone that was cut out of a hill without handes, being now made a huge moun­taine that had spreed it self ouer the whole face of the earth, according to Daniels prophetie: thē thos holy and sage Dan. 2. Apostles for preuenting of al new doc­trines and false errours that might after­wardes arise, (as by reuelation from Ie­sus, they vnderstood there should doe ma­ny:) most earnestly exhorted, and with al possible vehemēcie called vpon the peo­ple, 1. Cor. 16. Galat. 5. 2. Thess. 2. to stand fast in the documents and tra­ditions then receaued; to holde firmly the faith and doctrine already deliuered, as a [Page 305] Depositum and treasure committed to be safely kept vntil the last daie. And aboue 1. Tim. 6. 20. 2. Tim. 1. Mat. 7. Rom. 16. 2. Tim. 2. 3. Tit. 3. 2. Thess. 3 2. Ioa. 7. Apoc. 2. all other thinges, they most diligently forewarned them to beware newfangled teachers, whom they called Herctiques; who should breake from the vnitie of this vniuersal bodie, already made and knit to­gether; and should deuise new gloses, exposition, and interpretations of Scrip­ture; bring in new senses, doctrines, opi­nions & diuisions; to the renting of Gods Church and Citie now builded, and to the perdition of infinite soules.

For discerning of which kinde of most pernicious people, (as S. Austen and other Aug. [...] vera [...]. holie fathers doe note;) & for more per­fecte distinction betwene them and true Christians; the said Apostles inuented the name Catholique, and set doune in their cō ­mon Creede, that clause or article, I be­leeue the Holie Catholike Church. By whiche The first inuentiō of the name Catholike. word Catholike (that signifieth vniuersal,) they gaue to vnderstand to al posteritie, that whatsoeuer doctrine or opinion, should be raised afterward among Chri­stians, disagreeing from the general con­sent, doctrine, and tradition of the vniuer­sal Church: was to be reputed as errour & heresie, and vtterly to be reiected. And that the only Anckor, staie, and securitie of a Christian mans my nde in matters of beleefe for his saluation, was to be a Ca­tholike; that is, See S. Hie [...] cont. Laciferian. Vincen. liri. l. cōt. heres. Aug. [...]. cp. Man. (as all aunciēt fathers doe interprete the same,) one, who layīg aside al particuler opinions and imaginations, [Page 306] both of hym self and others, doth subiect his iudgment to the determination of Christes vniuersal visible and knowen Church vpon earth, embrasing whatso­euer that beleeueth, and abādoning what­soeuer that reiecteth. And this is that plaine, direct, sure, and infallible waye among Christians, whereof we spake out of Esaie and other prophetes and Saintes of God before, wherin no man can erre though neuer so simple, but only of wilful and obstinate malice; which is declared in this maner followinge.

The Ghospel of Christ being once prea­ched, and receyued vniformely ouer al the VVhy he that lea­neth to the Church, can not be de­ceiued. world, and Churches of Christianitie erected throughout all Countries, Pro­uinces, and Nations in the Apostles time, as hath bene said: it is to be considered, that this vniuersal church, bodie, or king­dome, so gathered, foūded, & established, was to continue visibly, not for one or two ages, but vnto the worlds ende. For so it was foreshewed and promissed most perspicuouslie by Daniel, when he fore­telling the soure great Monarchies, that after him should ensue, adioineth thes eui­dent wordes, of the church and kingdome of Christ: In the daies of thes kingdomes, shal Dan. 2. God raise vp a Celestial kingdome, vvhich shal indure for euer, vvithout subuersiō; & that king­dome shal not be deliuered ouer to any other peo­ple. By which last wordes, as also by di­uers promisses of Christ hym self in the Math. 16. [...]. 28. Ghospel, we are acertained, that the very [Page 307] same visible congregatiō, Church, bodie, common weale, gouernment, and king­dome, which was established by the Apo­stles in their time, should endure and con­tinue by succession of folowers, vnto the worlds ende: neither should it passe ouer or be deliuered to any other people; that is, no new teachers or later doctrines dis­senting from the first, should euer finallie preuaile against it. Which prophetie to haue bene fulfilled frō that day vnto this, is made euident and most apparant, by the recordes of al ages; wherin, albeit diuers errours and heresies haue sprong vp, and made great blustering and disturbance for a time: yet haue they bene repressed and beate doune againe, by the same Church, and her visible pillars in the ende.

For examples sake; in the first age, there rose vp certaine seditious fellowes amōg No Heresie euer [...] a­gain, the Churche. the Iewes, making some cōtention about their ceremonies, as also did Simon Ma­gus, Nicolaus, Cerinthus, Ebion, and Me­nander, that were heretiques. Against whō, (besides the Apostles,) stoode ī de­fence of that which was published be­fore, their Disciples, S. Martialis, S. Dio­nisius Areopagita, Ignatius, Policarpus, & others. In the secōd age, rose vp Basilides, Cerdon, Marcion, Valentinus, Tacianus, Apelles, Montanus and diuers others: against whom stoode in the battaile, Iu­stinus Martyr, Dionisius bishop of Co­rinth. Irenaeus, Clemens Alexandrinus, Tertulian, and their equals. And so doune­ward [Page 308] frō age to age vnto our daies, what­soeuer heresie, or different opinion hath bene raised contrary to the general con­sent of this vniuersal bodie; it hath bene checked and controlled by the watchmē, pastours, & chief gouernours of this bo­die; and finally, hath bene condemned and anathematized by their general assem­blies, consent, and councelles, gathered from time to time, as occasions serued in al partes of the world. Wherby it is most manifest, that he, who relieth vpon this general consent of Christes Church in A secure vvaye. earth, and adhereth to nothing against the iudgmēt of the same; cā not possibly erre in matters of beleefe, but walketh in that sure, secure, and infallible path, wherin Esaye sayeth, that a very foole can not Esa. 52. goe amisse.

Wherfore, to conclude this first parte of our present speech, cōcerning the trial The cōclu­sion of the first parte. of our faith and beleefe: he that is a true Catholique, and holdeth hym self within th' obedience of this general and vniuer­sal Church, which hath descended by suc­cession from Christ and his Apostles: that is, as olde Vincentius said eleuen hundred years agoe, in his most excellent treatise Vincent. li­rin. li cont. heres. against innouations of heretiques: he that Ioueth the Churche and bodie of Iesus Christ so much, as he preferreth nothinge in the world before the Catholique and vniuersal doctrine therof: not any priuat mans authoritie, loue, wit, or eloquence; not reasons of nature or pretēce of scrip­tures, [Page 309] against that which before hym was beleeued by all men: he that followeth vniuersalitie, antiquitie, and consent in his beleefe; and standeth firmelie to that faith, which hath bene held from time to time in al places, in al seasons, by al or the most parte of Bishopes, Priestes, and Doc­tours in Christianitie: he that cā say with S. Augustine, that he trulie followeth that vniuersal Church, which had her begin­ningeAug. cont. epist. Manachaei cap. 4. & lib. de vera relig. cap. 7.by the enteringe in of Natiōs, got authoritie by miracles, was increased by charitie, and established by continuance: which hath her succession of bishopes from the Chaire of Peter vntil our time: that Church, whiche is knowen in the worlde by the name of Catholique, not onlie to her friendes, but also among her enimies, for that euen heretiques in com­mon speech doe terme her so, hauinge noMarke this reason of S. Austen.other meanes to distinguishe them-selues and their followers from her, but by cal­ling them reformers, Illuminates, vnspot­ted bretheren, and such other names that are different from Catholiques:

He that protesteth with S. Ierom, that he doth abhorre all sectes and names of particuler men; as Marcionistes, Monta­nistes, Valentinians and the like: he that Hieron. Dialog. cont. Lu­ciferian. Cyprian. epist. 50. ad Cornel. epis. Rom. Gal. 5. doth confesse sincerlie with blessed Cy­prian, that one priest for the time, is to be obeyed by gods ordinance, as iudge in Christes roome, by the vniuersal brother­hode of al Christianitie: he that is modest, quiete, sober, voide of contētion, & obe­dient, [Page 310] Phil. 1. Tit. 3. Rom. 12. as S. Paul describeth a true and good Catholique: he that is humble i his owne cōcept, and aggreinge to humble thinges; firme in faith, & not variable, nor delighted vvith nevv doctrines: he that can captiuate his vn­derstandinge Ephes. 4. Heb. 13. 2. Cor. 10. to the obedience of Christ, which is, to beleeue humblie such thinges, as Christ by his church proposeth vnto him, albeit his reason or sense should stande against the same: And finallie, he that can be content at Christes commandement, to heare the Church in al thinges, without Mat. 18. Mat. 23. doubt or exception, and obey the Gouer­nours therof, albeit in life they be Scribes and Pharises; and consequentelie, can say trulie, & sincerlie, with the whole Ambros. ep. 81. ad Syricium. Hieron. ad Pamach. Aug. serm. 81. de tép. Col­lege of Christes Apostles together, Creda sanctam Ecclesiam Catholicam, I doe belieue the holie Catholique & vniue: sal Church, and what soeuer that Church doth set furth, teach, holde, or beleeue: that man (no doubt) is in a most sure case for mat­ters of his faith, and can not possiblie walke awry therin; but may thinke hym self a good Christian, for this first pointe, which is, for matters of beliefe.

THERE FOLLOVVETH the second THE. 2. parte of this chap­ter. OF good syfe. parte of Christian profession, concerning life and manners; which is a matter of so much more difficultie then the former, by how many more wayes a man may be lead from vertuous life, then from sincere faith. Wherin ther can be no comparison at all, seing the pathe of our beliefe is so manifest (as hath beneshewed,) that no [Page 311] mā cā erre therin, but of inexcusable wil­fulnes. Which wilfulnes in errour, the holie See S. Aug. lib. de vtilit. cred. c. 1. & tract. 1. in epist. Iohan. Cy­prian. ep. 61 fathers of Christes primatiue Church, did alwayes referre to two prin­cipal and original causes; that is, to pride or ouerweening in our owne concepts; and to malice against our superiours, for not giuing vs contentation in things that we desire. Of the first doe proceede, the deuising of new opinions; new glosing, Tvvo causes of here­sie. expounding, and applying of Scriptures; the calling of holy writ it self in que­stion; the contempt of auncient customes 1 and traditions; the preferring of our iudg­ments before al others, either present or past; the debasing of holie Fathers, priests prelates, Councels, ordinances, constitu­tions, and al other thinges, and proofes what so euer, that stand not with our owne good liking and approbatiō. Of the 2 second fountaine, are deriued other quali­ties, conformable to that humour; as are, the denying of Iurisdictiō and authoritie in our Superiours; the contempt of Pre­lates; th' exaggeration of the faults and defectes of our Gouernours; th' impugna­tion of al Bishoplike dignitie, or eccle­siastical eminentie, and especially of the Sea Aposto lique, wherunto appertainet the correction of such like offendours; & finally, for satisfying this deuilishe and The doin­ges of here­tiques. most pernicious veine of malice, thos wicked reprobates, doe incite and arme the people against their spiritual pastours; they enkindle factions against Gods an­nointed [Page 312] substitutes; they deuise a new Church, a new forme of gouernment, a new kingdome, and ecclefiastical hierar­chie vpon earth, wherby to bring men in doubt and staggering, what or whom to beleeue, or wherunto to haue recourse in such difficulties as doe arise.

Thes two maladies (I save) of Pride Th' obser­uation of S. Cyprian. and Malice, haue bene the two causes of obstinate errour in al heretiques from the beginning; as ful wel noted that holy and auncient martir S. Cyprian, when he said Cyprian. epist. 65. ad Rogatian. so longe agoe: ‘Thes are the beginnings and original causes of heretiques and wicked schismatsques: first, to please and like wel of them selues; and then, being puffed vp with the swelling of pride, to cōtemne their gouernours & superiours. Thus doe they abandone and forsake the church: thus doe they erect a prophane Altar out of the church, agaīst the church: Thus doe they breake the peace and vnitie of Christ, and doe rebell against Gods holie ordination.’

Now then, as thes are the causes, either only or principal of erring ī our beleefe; Many cau­ses of euill lyse. most facile and easie (as we see) to be dis­cerned: so of errour in life & maners, ther are many more occasions, causes, ofsprin­ges, and fountaines to be found. That is to saye, so many in number, as we haue euil passions, inordinate appetites, wicked de­sires, or vnlauful inclinations within our mynde; euery one wherof, is the cause of­tentimes of disordered life, and breach of [Page 313] Gods commandementes. For which res­pect, ther is much more set doune ī Scrip­ture, for exhortation to good life, then to faith; for that the errour herein is more ordinary and easie, and more prouoked by our owne frailtie, as also by the multi­tude of infinite temptations. Wherfore we read that our Saueour Iesus in the ve­rie beginning of his preaching, straight after he was baptised, & had chosen vnto hym S. Peter and S. Andrew, Iames and The effect of Christs first sermon. Math. 5. 6. 7. Iohn, & some other few Disciples, wēt vp to the moūtaine, & ther made his first most excellēt, famous, and copious sermon, re­cited by S. Mathew in three whole chap­ters; wherin he talketh of nothing els, but of vertuous life, pouertie, meekenes, iustice, puritie, sorowe for sinne, patience in suffering, contempt of riches, forgy­uing of iniuries, fasting prayer, penance, entring by the strait gate; and finally, of perfection, holines, and integritie of cō ­uersation; and of the exact fulfilling of euery iote of Gods lawe and commaunde­mentes.

He assured his Disciples with greate asseueration, that he came not to breake Math. 5. v. 20. the law, but to fulfil the same; and conse­quentelie, whosoeuer should breake the least of his commaundementes, and should so teache men to doe; that is, should per­seuer Math. 5. therein, without repentance, and so by his example drawe other men to doe the like: should haue no place in the king­dome of heauen. Againe, he exhorted thē [Page 314] most earnestlie to be lightes, and to shyne by good workes, to all the world, and that excepte their iustice did exceede the iustice of Scribes and pharises, (which was but ordinarie and external,) they Ibid. v. 21. could not be saued. He told them plainlie, they might not serue two masters in this life, but either must forsake God or aban­don Mammon. He cried vnto them, Atten­dite, stand attent, and consider well your Cap. 6. Cap. 7. state and condition: and then againe; seeke to enter by the straite gate. And lastlie, he con­cludeth, that th' onlie trial of a good tree, is the good fruite which it yeeldeth; without which fruite, let the tree be neuer so faire or pleasant to the eye, yet, is it to be cut downe & burned; & that not euerie one who shal say or crie vnto hym, Lord, Lord, at the last daye should be saued, or enter into the kingdome of heauen; but onlie such, as did execute in deedes, the wil and commaundementes of his fa­ther in this life. For want wherof, he as­sureth them, that manie at that daye, who had not onlie belieued, but also donne mi­racles in his name, should be denied, re­iected, and abandonned by hym.

Which longe lesson of vertuous life, being the first that euer our Saueour gaue in publique to his Disciples then newlie Faith is not sufficient vvithout vvorckes. gathered together, as S. Mathew noteth; (hauing treated verie litle of pointes of faith before, but onlie in general by some miracles and preachinge, hauinge shewed hymself to be the true Messias:) doth suf­ficientlie [Page 315] teache vs, that it is not enoughe to beleeue in Iesus, and to make professiō of his name and doctrine; except we con­forme our lyues and actions accordinge to the prescript of his commaundmentes. For albeit in Christian religion, faith be the first and principal foundation, wher­vpon all the rest is to be stayed and groun­ded: yet as in other material buildinges, after the foundation is layed, ther remai­neth A simili­tude tou­ching faith & vvorks. the greatest labour, time, cost, cun­ning, and diligence, to be bestowed vpon the framinge and furnishinge of other partes that must insue: euen so in this ce­lestial edifice or buildinge of our soule, hauing layed once the foundation and grounde of true beliefe, (which a Chri­stian oftentimes dispacheth in the space of In lear­ning ouer his Cate­chisme. one weekes learninge;) the rest of al our life, time, labour, and studies, is to be employed in the perfecting of our life and actions, and as it were, in raising vp the walles & other partes of our spiritual buil ding, by the exercise of al vertues, and di­ligent obseruation of Gods commaunde­ments. Without the which, our faith is to no more purpose or profite, then is a foundation without a building vpon it, or a stocke or tree that beareth no fruite. Which thinge S. Iames expresseth most excellentelie in this fit similitude. Euen as a bodie vvithout spirite is dead; so is saith vvith­out Iac. 2. vvorkes.

Which necessary point of vertuous life and obseruing Gods commandements, for [Page 316] that certaine carnal and sensual Christiās An anciēt errour of sensual men about faith & vvorkes in the primatiue Church, euen yet whiles the Apostles thē selues were aline, would in no wise vnderstande aright; but for pleasing their owne appetites, deuised vpon certaine darke and hard speeches of S. Paul, that only faith was sufficient to saue them: S. Austine and other auncient fathers were of opinion, that not only thes last wordes of S. Iames, & the whole discourse which he maketh of this matter in that chapter; but also both his and all other Apostles writinges, set forth and published after S. Pauls epistles, were prin cipally to represse this most absurde and pernicious errour. For declaratiō wherof, I wil allege only thes words of S. Augu­stine folowing, expresly writē in a booke for this purpose, intituled of faith & good workes. Thus then he beginneth.

For that this wicked opinion of only faith, was sprong vp in the Apostles time, by ill vnderstāding of S. Paul; al the other
S. Austem discourse.
Apostolical epistles which ensue, of S. Peter, S. Iohn, S. Iames, and S. Iude, were directed principally to this ende, to proue
[...] de [...]. & oper. cap. 14.
with al vehemencie, that faith without good workes is nothing worth. Euen as in deed S. Paul him self did not define eue­ry maner of faith, wherby we beleeue in God; but only meaneth that profitable & euangelical faith, which hath workes an­nexed, proceeding of charitie. And as for
Gal. 5.
that faith, which is without workes, and yet seemeth to thes men to be sufficient [Page 317] for their saluation; he protesteth, that it is so vnprofitable, as he doubteth not to save of hym self; If I should haue all faith, in
1. Cor. 13.
such sort, is I vvere able to moue mountaines, & yet had not charitie; I vvere nothing. By which charitie (no doubt) good life is meant, for that, as in an other place it is said: Charitie
Rom. 13.
is the fulfilling of al the lavv. Wherfore S. Peter most euidently, in his secōd epistle, hauing exhorted men to holines of life and maners; sheweth, that certaine wic­ked persons tooke occasion by some ob­scure sentēces of S. Paul, to promisse them selues securitie of saluatiō, by only faith. Which hard sentences, S. Peter affirmeth, that thes miserable mē, peruerted to their owne destruction, as they did also other holiescriptures; seing that S. Paul was of the verie same opinion, that the other Apostles were concerning life euerla­sting to be obtained by none, but by such onlie, as ioined vertuous life with their beliefe. But S. Iames of al other, is most vehement against al such, as thinke that faith can suffice to saluation without good workes; in so much, as he compareth them to the deuils thē selues, saying: Doest thou belieue that there is one God? thou doestvvel:
Iacob. 2.
the deuils also doe belieue the same and tremble. What could be spokē more truly, briefly, and vehemently then this? seing in the Ghospel we read, that the deuils made the same confession of Christes deitie, that
Marc. 1. Mat. 16.
did S. Peter, and yet Christ commended the one, and reprehended the other. &c. [Page 318] Wherfore, let not simple mindes be de­ceyued,
Ibid. c. 22
& thincke that they knowe God, if they confesse hym with a dead faith; that is, with a faith voide of good works as deuils doe, for that they read (perhap­pes) in scripture thes wordes of Christ; this is life euerlasting, that men knovve thee the true God, and Iesus Christ vvhom thou hast sent:
Ioa. 17.
Lett them not (I saye) be deceyued with this; but lett them remēber, how Christes Apostle expoundeth that saying, when he writeth; By this vve knovve God (trulie,) is vve keepe his Commaundementes; and vvho soe­uer
1. Ioh. 2.
sayeth, that he knovveth hym, and yet keepeth not his Commaundementes: he is a liar, and the truth is not in hym.

Thus farre S. Augustine, declareth this veritie out of the scriptures; and he ad­deth Enchirid. cap. 67. further in an other place, the testi­monie of S. Paul for comprobation here­of, who admonished the people of Co­rinthus in thes wordes: Deceyue not your selues: nether fornicatours, nor adulterours, nor 2. Cor. 6. theeues, nor couetous persons, nor backbiters, nor drunckards, shal obtaine the kingdome of God. Which S. Augustin proueth, that S. Paul in truth could neuer haue auouched; if the Corinthians by onlie faith might haue escaped damnation.

The very same discourse maketh S. Gregorie the great, out of holie write The proose vsed by S. Gregorie. vpon this pointe. For hauinge considered thos most confortable wordes of Christ to S. Thomas, blessed are they vvho haue not seene, and yet haue beleeued: he annexeth as Iohn. 20. [Page 319] followeth. ‘Perhaps here, euerie Christian will saye within hym self, I doe belieue and therfore I am blessed, & shalbe saued. Greg. hom. 29. in Euā. Wherin he saith truth, if his life be an­swerable to his beleefe. For that a true faith doth not contradicte in maners, the thiges which it professeth in wordes. For which cause, it was said of certaine false Christians, by S. Paul; that they confes­sed Tit. 1. 1. Ioh. 2. God in vvordes, but denied hym in deedes, and by S. Iohn; that vvho soeuer saith, he knovveth God, and keepeth not his commaunde­ments, is a lyar. Which being so; we must examine the truth of our faith, by consi­deration of our lyfe: for then, and not otherwise, are we true Christians; if we VVhat vve pro­missed in Baptisme. fulfill in workes, that wherof we haue made promisse in wordes: that is; in the daye of our baptisme, we promissed to re­nounce the pompe of this world, togy­ther with all the workes of iniquitie; which promisse, if we perfourme now Li. 33. mo­ral. cap. 7. after baptisme; thē are we true Christiās, and maye be ioyful.’ And in an other place the same holie father addeth this. ‘For that diuers men, are Christians in profes­sion and faith onlie, and not in life: here­hence it is said, by the voice of truth it self; Not euerie one that shall say to me Lord Math. 7. Lord, shall enter into the kingdome of heauen. And againe: vvhie doe you call me Lord, Lord, and doe not perfourme the thinges that I tell you? Herehence it is, that God cōplained of his olde people the Iewes, saying; this people ho Malac. 7. noureth we vvith their lippes, but their hart is [Page 320] sarre of from me. And the Prophet Dauid of the same people: they loued hym vvith their Psal. 77. mouth, and vvith their tongues they lyèd [...] hym. Wherfore, lett no man trust that his faith may saue hym without good deedes, seing that we know it is writen expres­selie; that faith vvithout vvorkes is dead: and Iacob. 2. consequentelie, can not be profitable, or saue vs from damnation. Hytherto S. Gre­gorie.’

Which verie conclusion S. Chrysostome maketh with great vehemencie, vpon con­sideration The testi­monie and exhortation of S. Chry­sostome. Math. 25. of that woesull chaunce and heauie iudgemet, that happned vnto him, who in the Ghospel, was admitted to the feast of Christian faith and knowledge, but for lacke of the ornament or garment of good life, was most cōtumeliouslie de­priued of his expectatiō; of whō S. Chry­sostoms wordes are thes. ‘He was īuited to the feast & brought into the table; but for that by his fowle garment, he dishonored our Lord that had īuited hym: heare how miserable and lamentable a punishemēt he suffered. He was not onlie thrust from the Chryshom. 2. in Iohan. table & banquet; but also bounde hand & foote, and cast into vtter darkenes, wher ther is eternal weepinge and gnashing of teeth. Wherfore, lett vs not, deare brethe­ren, lett vs not (I saye) deceyue our selues, and immagine, that our faith will saue vs without good worckes. For except we ioyne pure lyfe to our beleefe, and in this heauenlie vocation of ours, doe apparrel our selues with worthie garmentes of [Page 321] vertuous deedes, wherby we may be ad­mitted at the mariage daye in heauen: nothing shall be able to deliuer vs from the damnation of this miserable man, that wanted his weddinge weede. Which thingt S. Paul well noteth, when hauinge said; vve haue an euerlasting hovvse in heauen, not made by mans handes: he addeth presente­lie 2. Cor. 5. this exception; sitamen vestiti & non nudi inueniamur, that is, if we be founde at that daye, well apparreled & not naked.’Would God euerie Chistian desyrous of his sal­uation, would ponder well this discourse and exhortation of S. Chrysostom.

And so with this alone, to conclude our speech in this chapter, without alle­gation The cōclu­sion of this chapter. of further matter or authorities, (which are infinite to this effect;) it may appeare by that which hath already bene set doune, wherin the true profession of a Christian consisteth; and therby eche man that is not partial, or blinded in his owne affection, (as many are,) may take a vewe of his estate and condition, and frame vnto him self a verie probable con­iecture, how he is like to speed at the last accompting daie; that is; what profite or dōmage he may expect, by his knowledge and profession of Christian religion. For as to him that walketh vprightly in that vocation, and perfourmeth effectually euerie waye his professed dutie; there remaine both infinite and inestimable rewardes prepared: so to him that strayeth a syde, and swarueth from the [Page 322] right path of lyfe or faith prescribed vnto him; there are no lesse paines and pu­nishmēts referued. For which cause, euery Christian that is careful of his saluation, ought to fixe his eye verie seriouslie vpon them both; and as in beleefe to shew him self constant, firme, humble, obedient, and in one worde, Catholique: so in life and conuersation, to be honest, iust, pure, in­nocent, and holie.

And for that, this second point con­cerning life and maners, is of more diffi­cultie (as hath bene shewed) then the other of beleefe, (wherof notwithstan­ding we haue also treated sufficiently in the former chapters:) the rest of this whole worke, shal tende to the declara­tion of this later part, I meane of good life; therby to stirre vp and awake, (if so it may please the merciful goodnes of our blessed Saueour;) the slouthful hartes of Christians, to the cogitatiō of their owne estate, and make them more vigilant in this greate affaire, wheron de­pendeth their endles woe or welfare.

ANNOTATION.

THE PRINT BEING come to this place, M. Bunneys edition of this booke vvas deliuered to me, out of vvhose infinite corruptions, maymes, and mā ­glinges, diuers thinges shalbe noted hereafter in the margent.

OF THE TWO PRINCI­PAL POINTES THAT DOE APPERTAINE TO A Christian life; that is to saye: To resist all synne, and to excercise all kynde of vertue; vvith the meanes and methode hovv to perfourme them both. CHAPT. VI.

SVPPOSINGE that in the partes of this booke which ensue, we are to deale only with suche, as are in­structed and settled in true Christian faith; (wherunto we haue The reason of this Chapter. proued before, that vertuous life and good deeds are necessarily to be adioi­ned,) it semeth conuenient in this place, to treate of the pointes or prīcipal partes belonging therunto. Which partes, are briefly prescribed by God hym self, in the writinges of Dauid, Esaie, and other pro­phetes Psal. 36. Esa. 1. of the olde testament, exhorting men, to decline from vice, and to embrace ver­tue. [Page 324] But much more plainly by S. Peter, S. Paul, and other Apostles of the Euangeli­cal law: the first affirming, that the fruite and effect of Christes death and passion was; that vve being dead to sinne: should liue to 1. Pet. 2. Tit. 2. Iustice: and the other adioining; that the grace of God our saueour, appeared to al men, in­structing vs to this ende, that vve renouncing al vvickeanes, should liue iustly and godly in this vvorld.

By which testimonies of holy write, The tvvo partes of good life. is made cleare and euidēt, that the whole dutie of a good Christian, is reduced to thes two heades or principles; to wit, to the resistance of al euil, and to th' exercise of al pretie and vertue. In respect of the first wherof, our life is called in holie scripture, a warfare vpon earth; and ver­tuous Iob. 7. 2. Cor. 10. mē are termed souldiours; for that, as good souldiours doe lye in continual wayte to resist their ennemies: so vigilant Christians doe carefully stand vpon their watche, for resisting the suggestions and temptatiōs of sinne. In regarde of the se­cond Mat. 9. 10 20. Tim. 5. pointe, we are named labourers, husbandmen, sowers, marchātes, bankers, stewards, fermers, and the like; and our whole life is termed a marte and trafique; for that, as thes kinde of people, doe attēd with diligēce to their gaine and encrease of tēporal riches in this life: so ought we to applie our selues wholy, in the cōtinual exercise of good workes, for augmētation of our merite and treasure in the world to come.

[Page 325] Thes then are the two partes of a good Christian life; the two principal pointes wherupon we should meditate; the exer­cises wherin we should be occupied; the two legges wherupon we should walke towards our Countrie; the two armes wherwith we should laye faste-hand on Godes eternal kingdome; the two winges wherby we must flie and mount vp to hea­uē. So that, whosoeuer doth want any one One of thes partes not auailable vvithout the other. of thes two partes, albeit he had the other; yet can he neuer ascende to Godes blisse; no more then a bird can flie, being maimed of one of her winges. My mea­ning is; that neither integritie of life, is sufficiēt without good workes; nor good workes auailable, without a pure and vn­defiled life. The later is made cleare by Gods owne speeches, to the people of Is­rael; whos sacrifices, oblations, praiers, and other such workes; that were com­mended and commaunded by hymself, he oftentimes reiected, and accompted abho­minable, for that the presentours and ex­hibitours Esa. 1. Iere. 6. Amos. 5. therof, were men of impious and wicked conuersation. The former also is apparantly shewed, by Christes parable of the foolishe virgins; who albeit they were Virgins, and incontaminate from sinne: yet because they lacked the oile of good workes, to giue light in their lam­pes: they were excluded from the mariage banquet, as also that other most infortu­nate Mat. 25. Luc. 13. fellow was, who wanted his wed­ding ornament. Both thes pointes then [Page 326] are necessarie to a Christian mans salua­tion, & that so necessarie; as the one with­out the other is not auailable.

AND FOR THE FIRST, which is resisting of sinne; we are commaunded by THE. 1. parte of resisting sinne. Godes holy worde, to doe it manfully, vi­gilantly, and constantly. And S. Paul ad­deth moreouer; that in this resistance, we ought to striue euen vnto death, and to the Heb. 10. Ephe. 5. Iac. 4. 1. Pet. 5. shedding of our last blood, if occasion doe require. The same are we taught by diuers other Apostles and Saintes in Christes Church, exhorting and instructing vs to this fight and cōbat with the flesh, world, & deuil, that entice vs to sinne. For proofe wherof, it shal suffice in this place, to al­leage thos last wordes of Iob, which doe conclude his large discourse of the most dreadful power and crueltie of Leuiathā; Memento belli; ‘be not vnmindeful of the Iob. 40. warre, which thou wagest with this ennimy.’

Which warre and resistance, is to be Hovv per­fect our re­sistāce must be. performed with such exquisite diligence, and firme resolution on our behalf: as it behoueth vs, not only to withstand the committing of any one actual sinne; but also the very consent of minde therunto. For so we are commaunded expresly; bevvare least at any time, thou giue consent vnto Tob. 4. any sinne. Concerning which thing, it is briefly to be noted, that sinne may be com­mitted either in deed or in wil alone. And to this later kinde, al diuines agree, and proue it by S. Iames, that ther are three Iacob. 4. [Page 327] degrees; to witt; Suggestion, Delectation, Aug. l. 1. de ser. do. cap. 23. & li. 12. de Trin. cap. 12. and Consent. Wherof, as the first is of the ennimie; the second. of our sensualitie; the third, of reason: so may the first be without fault; the second includeth (for the most part) some negligence; the third Three de­grees to sinne. Greg. ad inter. 11. August. [...] conuinceth vs alwaies of iniquitie. Or to vse the verie wordes of S. Gregorie the great. In Suggestion, is the seede of sinne; in De­lectation, the norrishment; in Consent, the perse­ction. So that, who soeuer doth but only yeeld consent of minde to the perfour­mance of any vnlauful act, so farr foorth, as he would committ the same, if he had time, place, and abilitie therunto: is con­demned by holy write, in the guilt of that sinne, as deeply, as if in deed he had now actuallie committed the same. So Christ Mat. 5. him self, in the matter of adulterie ex­presly pronounced, and long before that, Exod. 12. Deut. 5. by the mouth of Moyses, he determined the like in other offenses of the people of Israel.

In consideration of which seuere de­termination, it is most wonderful and dreadful to consider, (our selues being so The dili­gence of auncient auncient in resisting sinne. negligent herein as we are,) what great attention, watche, care, and feare, holy Saintes of God in times past had, in this point of resisting sinne, and the very first motions and temptations therof. In times past (I saie) in thos blessed daies of anti­quitie, when the spirite of God was yet hoate and boiling in the breastes of his deuout seruants, and when recheles sen­sualitie [Page 328] had not so ouerwhelmed the world as now it hath. We read of the iust and most blessed man Iob, that notwithstanding all his integritie & per­fection Of Iob. of life; yet did he diligently dis­cusse and feare euery the least of his owne Iob. 9. actions; being wel assured (as he prote­steth,) that God doth not pardon such as are negligent, and doe offend him therin. Holy Dauid also, though he were a king; yet did he euery night, brushe or svveepe his Of Dauid. spiri e, by diligēt examination or the very Psal. 76. cogitations and inward motions of his hart. In which exercise S. Paul, that most Of S. Paul. worthie Apostle and exact obseruer of his maisters commaundemētes, was so precise and careful; as albeit he were assaulted with many strong and violent tempta­tions of the flesh, by Satans suggestion: yet by his owne diligent resistance together with the assistance of Gods holy grace, 1. Cor. 4. which was giuen vnto him particularly for that combat; he preserued his minde so pure and vnspotted from al blot of cō ­sent: as after the victorie obtained, he durst affirme of him self, that to his knowledge, he was guiltie of no fault or 2. Cor. 12. offence.

For better obtaining of which vi­ctorie, it is most probable, that he vsed External helpes for the resisting of sinne. 2. Cor. 6. 11. 1. Tim. 1. thos external helpes & remedies of much fasting, lōg praying, paineful watchig, & rigourous chastising of his owne bodie, which he mentioneth in his writinges. To which ende appertained in like ma­ner, [Page 329] the same and like exercises recorded by S. Paul and other writers, to haue bene 1. Cor. 9. vsed by the rest of the Apostles; that is to saie, Thes thīges Bunney clip­peth as not so necessarie for Mini­sters. diuers and frequent austerities, and bodely mortifications, therby to bring their flesh in subiection to their spirites, and to make them selues more able to withstand al sinful temptations and sug­gestions of the aduersarie. So Egisippus, Eusebius, and others doe make wonderful Egis apud Enseb. li. 2. lust. cap. 23. Of S. Iames narrations of the strait diet, apparrel, and forme of life vsed by S. Iames the iust, in whom they recorde among other thinges, that with continual praying vpon his knees, the skine therof was made so hard as the braune of a Camels knee. The like or rather more straunge thinges, doth Philo Philo. lib. 4. de vit. con­tempt. Of S. Mark the Iewe set foorth in the life and exer­cises of S. Marke, & of his disciples that li­ued in Alexandria, who by their exquisite seueritie in this behalf, droue into admi­ration euen thos, that were aduersaries of their religion. By imitation of which first and perfect Christians, in this combat of resisting sinne, diuers other did afterward take in hand that strait course of life, wherof we read with admiration in aun­ciēt writers, as Bunney doubteth vvhether S. Anthonie had sufficiīt ground­vvorke of his dainge; but Atha­nasius doub­ted not. S. Anthonie, whos life is recorded by holy Athanasius; Paul and Hilarion, whos wonderful actes are set doune by S. Ierome; and infinite other, whos most admirable and rare austerities are described by Cassianus, almost twelue 10. Cass. de Inst. hundred yeares gone.

Al which exercises tended to this only. [Page 330] ende, to enhable them selues the better to stand in the fight and bataile against al wickednes and sinne. This was the begin­ning of austeritie of life, in thos first fa­thers and founders of our religion. This was the cause of first leauing the world The reason of Monasti­cal life in the begin­ninge. and flying to the desert. This was the ori­gine of al Monasteries, Cloisters, Eremi­tages, Celles, & Solitarie habitatiōs. And finally, this was the reason of al breach and separation from flesh and blood, and from al wordly conuersation; therby to eschue al occasions of external tempta­tions, and by that meanes, to gather the more force and strength, for resistance of the internal. In which internal conflict not with standing, the combat oftentimes was so sharpe and vehement; as it is most wonderful to consider, what is recorded by the forsaid writers, touching assaults endured in this behalfe, by thos auncient Saintes that had left the world, and what extreme paines and afflictions they su­steined willingly, for continuing their resistance against their spiritual aduersa­rie. Which thinges were sett doune (no doubt) & left writen to vs by Gods holie prouidence, for our confusion that now liue, who are so careles and negligent in resustinge th' assaultes and temptations of synne as we make no accompt or estima­tion ther of at all.

S. Ierome in a certaine epistle beareth A [...] exāple of 5. Ierom. witnes of him self, that hauing abādoned the world, and retired him self into a [Page 331] wilde desert of Syria: was most terribly tempted (not vnlike to S. Paul,) with sug­gestions 2. Cor. 12. of the fleshe. But what did he for resisting of this temptation? and what suc­cesse had he therin? You shal heare repor­ted by this his owne declaratiō. ‘O (saieth Hiero. epi. 22. ad Eust. he,) how often being in the wildernes & vaste desert, burnt vp and scorched by the extreame heates of the Sunne, (wherin the Moūkes of my time had their vglie ha­bitations,) was I tempted with cogita­tions of Romane delights? &c. I sat alone, for that I was replenished with sorowe and bitternes. The partes of my bodie were now become deformed, and vglie with continual wearing of my sacke: and my skinne was as blacke, as the skinne of an Ethiopian. I wept daily and passed my time continually in groning: And when at length, sleepe came vpon me against my wil; I laic doune & did beate my bare bones, scarse hanging togither, against the ground. Of my meate & drincke I wil The auste risie of olde Mounkes. saie nothing; wheras in this place, we that are Mōkes, doe vse only colde water euen when we be sicke, and doe thincke it a great delicacie to taste any one thing that sauoureth of the fire.’

‘I therfore being in this case, and ha­uing shut my self vp in this prison for feare of helfire, & for auoyding of sinne; being fellow now only to scorpions and wilde beastes, and wholy worne out with con­tinual fasting: yet could I not auoide the temptations of the flesh &c. Wherfore I [Page 332] did cast my self doune at the feet of Iesus: I did bathe the ground about me with S. Ieroms cōbat vvith tentatiōs of the fleshe. teares, and dried the same vp againe with my owne heare. I did represse my rebel­lious flesh, with continual abstinence of whole weekes togyther. I am not asha­med to confesse this miserie of my wret­ched estate. I remember that I cried vnto Iesus whole daies and nightes togyther, and ceassed not to beate and knocke my breaste, vntil he arose & rebuked my eni­mie, and therby restored to me my former tranquillitie. I perseuered in praier in that forlorne and sauuage desert, (being angrie and rigourous against my self,) & I ham­pered with imprisonment my miserable flesh, as our Lord is my witnes, vntil at length after infinite teares shed, and my verie sighte dazeled with long looking vp and beholding the heauens, I seemed The conso­lation of stryuinge, in stryuinge ende. againe to be restored to the companie & felowship of Angēls. Wherwith being made exceeding ioyful, and replenished (as it were) with al kinde of diuine and Celestial solace; I beganne to sing againe within my self, that most pleasant songe: vve shal novv rūne after the svvet sauour of thy Cant. 1. fragrant ointments, O Lord.

Thus did thes blessed fathers & Saintes of God behaue them selues: and thus did The mise­rable state of mosie Christiās at this daye. they esteeme them selues bound to doe, for resisting of sinne, and for maintenance of their integritie, against the wicked as­saultes of their ghostly enimie; remem­bring wel how it is written; fight valiantly [Page 333] for thy soule, and striue vnto death for mainte­nance of iustice. But (alas) deare brother, Eccle. 4. how doe we behaue our selues in this im­portāt busines? what doe we? what paines take we? what attention, what vigilance doe we hold vpon our thoughtes, wordes and actions? what caution doe we vse? what resistance doe we make? Is ther any man that flieth the occasions of sinne, or rather prouoketh not the same? is ther any now adayes that mortisieth his fleshe, or rather doth not cherishe and pamper it to wickednes? is ther any man that re­presseth his owne appetites? that standeth in fight against sensual suggestions? nay rather, doth not al the world runne after their owne concupiscences? doe they not yeeld them selues as slaues to euery temp­tatiō that doth arise? to euery assault that the enimie maketh? doe they not deuoure euery hooke which the deuil layeth for their intrappinge, and swalow doune eue­rie poisonned baite, that is cast for their destructiō? O merciful Lord, what a pitiful state of the world is this? harcken (good Christian) how this case of a careles sen­sual man is described, euen by the very fin­gar of God hym self. ‘I looked forth through the barres of my wīdowe (sayeth The des­cription of a man than follovveth his concu­piscence. Prou. 2. the diuine wisdome of God;) and I sawe and considered a fond yong fellowe, who walked by corners of the streates ī darke­nes, &c. And ther ranne vnto hym a wo­man, decked vp like an harlot, and prepa­red to deceyue soules, &c. she enticed hym [Page 334] by flatterie, and many sweet speeches, and entangled hym with stronge alluremētes. Presently, he folowed her as an oxe ledde vnto the slaughter, and as a wanton skip­pinge lambe that is caried to the sham­bles; like a birde that maketh haste to the snare; so foloweth he, not knowing seely sotte, that he is drawen to fetters, and that the daunger of his soule dependeth thereon, vntill his harte be strocken through. &c.’

This is the description which the holy The bon­dage and daunger by yeldinge to our concu­piscence. Ghoste vseth, to set out vnto vs the mise­rable condition of a dissolute and recheles Christian, which hath no care of resisting temptations, but folovveth euery sugge­stion of his owne sensual appetite, and therby, not only woundeth to death his owne hart and soule, by euery consent he yeeldeth: but also, (as the Scripture here noteth,) enthralleth him self in such mise­rable bondage and captiuitie, and casteth him self into so strong bandes & inextri­cable fetters of his ennimie; as he can not possibly afterwardes deliuer him self, but by some wonderful extraordinarie mira­cle wrought by God. For as truly Chri­stes Apostle writeth; he that yeeldeth to [...]; Ioa. 8. becòmeth the bondslaue of sinne. And the holy spirite of God in an other place, saieth; the vvicked man is vvrapt in the bades or chaines Pro. 5. of his ovvne vvickednes. Which bandes and chaines, are so nexed, knit, and strongly lincked together in a sensual man; that, being once entangled within the com­passe [Page 335] therof, he is drawen from lincke to The Chai­nes of sinne. lincke, & compassed about with so many foldes; that he seldome can escape, vntil he come to the ende therof, which is fa­stened euen in hel it self. This thing doe the holie See [...]. Greg. lib. 4. Moral. c. 27. Isod. li. de sum. bo­no. cap. 23. Fathers of Gods Church ex­presse by this deduction: to wit, that in ca­reles and negligent Christians, Suggestiō (which is the begining of this daūgerous and infernal chaine,) draweth after it co­gitation; cogitation, draweth affection; affection, delectation; delectation, con­sent; consent, operation; operation, cu­stome; custome, desperation of Gods mer­cie; desperatiō, bringeth in the defending of sinnes cōmitted; after which foloweth immediatelie both vaūtinge, bosting, and glorying in wickednes, which is the next inseparable lincke to damnation it self.

To thes miseries (loe) and inexplicable The mise­ries of them that resist not sinne. calamities, is the world brought, by not resisting the temptations of sinne, but yeelding to euery vnlawful motion of our sensual appetites. According as it was foretolde so long ago, If thou permit thy soule Prou. 7. to haue her concupiscences; she vvill make thee a ioye and pray to thy enimies. Oh ye children of Adam, whye consider ye not this thinge? ô worldlinges, ô careles Chri­stians, whie forget ye this pointe so ne­cessarie to be pondered? is it possible that men should be so negligent, in their owne apparent, and irremediable daungers? The world is come now to that desperate cō ­dition described by Iob, wherin men [Page 336] drinke vp sinne as beasts doe water: that is, without all difficultie, scruple, remorse Iob. 15. of conscience, feare of hell, care, doubt, examination, or cogitation. We are now come to that obstinate cōtempt forepro­phetied by Daniel; vvicked men vvil doe Dan. 12. vvickedlie, and vvill not vnderstande. Nay, the most parte of men are entered into that dreadful & most horrible plight, wherof the wisman said. The vvicked and impious man Pro. 18. vvhen he is come to the deapthe of vvickednes, contemneth all. But what are the wordes immediatlie ensuinge? His ignominie shall follovv hym. Which S. Paul expoundeth more plainlie in this maner. VVhose ende Philip. 3. shaibe death or destruction vvith confusion.

Wherfore, he that is a good Christian in deede, and desireth to enioye the fruite The cōclu­sion of this parte. of that vocation: lett hym beware of this perilous laberinthe, and learne to resiste his fleshlie appetites betime. Let hym crushe the head of the serpent at the first enterance of vnlawful suggestions, as in the second parte of this directorie, he shal more particule lie be instructed to doe. In the meane [...] this alredie spoken shalbe sufficient to declare the greate importā ­ce, weight, and necessitie of this affaire, and the manifolde mischiefes which ensue vnto the world for wante of watcheful­nes and diligence in this warre.

AND THVS HAVING shewed THE. 2. parte. OF labou­ring i good vvorkes. how euil souldiars we are in resisting our enimie; it remaineth to cōsider, how pru­dent marchātes and labourers we are for [Page 337] encrease of our gaine and spiritual riches, by the exercise, negotiation, and trafique of good workes. About which point is to be obserued, that man from his first fal in paradise, was assigned to trauaile and take paines in this kinde of exercise, and in no sort to be idle. For so it is plainlie set doune in the booke of Genesis; man vvas placed in paradise to labour. And after Gen. [...] that, in diuers other places of the olde te­stainent, the spirite of God exhorted men Pro. 12. Eccle. 20. Iere. 4. to be paineful, industrious, and diligently to til such land, as God hath lent them for their gaine. Which the prophet Osce in­terpreteth thus; Seminate vobis Iustitiam, ‘en­rich Osee. 10. you selues by sowing iustice.’And the wise man more plainly; vvhat soeuer thy hād Eccle. 9. can doe, doe it instantly. The reason of which exhortation, is set doune by the same in­strumēt of Gods spirite, in an other place: Anima operantium impinguabitur. ‘The soule of such as labour and take paine, shal be fattened; And againe: Seminanti Institiam, merces sidelis. To hym that soweth iusticc or good deeds, ther remaineth a faithful and sure reward.’ In respect wherof in the description of a blessed and fortunate mā, it was put for one principal qualitie by the prophete; that he receyued not his soule in Psal. 23. vaine, but laboured and employed the same to his greatest benefite. And this in the old testament.

But in the new, wherin the most ex­cellent Of laboring in the nevv. testament. merites of Christ, doe yeeld ine­stimable dignitie to al good workes that [Page 338] are done in his name, this precept of la­bouring, hath much more place, and is more seriouslie recommended; for that by Christes spirite and aboundance of grace, we are more enhabled to performe the same; as may appeare by the wordes of God him self in Ezechiel, wher foretel­ling the times of the Messias to come, saieth. At that day, vvil I place my spirite in Ezech. 36 you, and vvil bring to passe, that you shal vvalke in my commaundements, and shal labour and take paines. Which labour is to be vnderstoode, in performance of good workes, accor­ding as S. Paul describeth the condition of Christian people, when hecalleth thē, an acceptable people, clensed by Christes blood, to Tit. 2. The defini­tiō of a good Christian. Ephe. 2. be a folovver of good vvorkes. And in an other place he defineth a good Christian to be, the had vvorke of God, created ī Christ, to vvalke in good vvorkes. And yet further Christ him self in the Ghospel declareth plainly, what the state and condition of Christiās is in this life, by the parable wherin he likeneth hym self to the riche banker, who committed diuers summes of money to his seruantes, with this charge; Nego­tiamini dum venio. ‘Make ye your trafique Luc. 19. and commoditie, vntil I come and cal for an accompt.’

By al which is most manifest, that the life and vocation of a Christian in this The voca­tion of a Christian. world, is to labour and make his gaine by the talentes that God hath lent him; and to fructesie in al good vvorkes, as S. Paul ex­horteth Gal, 6. vs. Hereby also doth appeare, [Page 339] that the time of this our life, is nothing els but a certaine season alotted vs, wheri to sowe & plant; nothing els, but a fayer or marte wherin to trafique, negotiate, & make our exchaunge for the kingdome of heauen. In which affaire and negotiation, he that is diligent, painful, & industrious, is accompted a vvyse man, euen by Gods owne mouth: as on the contrary part, the Pro. 10. careles, slouthful, and negligent mā, is cal­led the childe of confusion, voide of wit, and subiect to al miserie, contempt, and beg­garie. Herehence are thos speeches of ho­lie Scripture, Manus sortium dominabitur: Pro. 12. ‘The hande of him, that laboureth with courage, shal preuaile and be potent.’ And againe; Robusti habebunt diu. tias. The stout & Pro. 11. painful shal haue welth at wil. And yet further; he that diligently tilleth his soile, shal aduance to great hight his rickes of corne. And to Eccle. 20. the negligent it is said on th' other side, Egestatem operata est manus remissa. ‘The lazie Pro. 10. and slouthful hand, doth worke vnto his maister nothing els but beggarie.’ And finally, the more to confound our foly & lazines in this point, and to make deeper impression therof in our hartes, we are by holy writ referred, euen vnto the schoole and instruction of vnreasonable creatures in this behalfe. Goe thou slouthful and lither sellovv, (sayeth the wisdome of God) vnto Pro. 6. the Ant or emmote, and consider his vvayes, and by hym learne vvisdome. He hath neither gouer­nour nor maister to teach hym, and yet doth he in sommer make prouision of soode vvheron to liue [Page 340] and sustaine hym self in vvinter. By which wordes we are admonished, not only what is our dutie in this life, concerning labour and trauaile in good workes: but also, that the most excellent and supreme point of wisdome, which possibly can be imagined, is, to gather store in this time present, for the time to come, and to make our bancke here in this world, wheron to liue in the countrie wherunto we take our iourney.

This is that great and rare wisdome, which is called in scripture, the vvisdome of Christian vvisdome vvherin it consisteth. Prou. 9. Rom. 11. 2. Cor. 1. Esa. 33. Eccle. 6. Saintes, or rather as S. Paul termeth it, the wisdome of God him self, not knowen to the world. That wisdome, which Esay cal­leth diuitias salutis, the treasure of saluatiō. That, wherof the wise man saith; cogitare de illa sensus est consummatus, to thinke onlie and ponder vpon this kinde of wis­dome, is most perfect vnderstanding and prudent knowledge. And againe: God loueth no man but hym that dvvelleth or remay­neth Eccle. 7. vvith vvisdome. And finallie, to stirre vs vp to this kinde of wisdome, he maketh an ample exhortation, with a declaration of the nature, dignitie, & vtilitie therof, in thes wordes. ‘Come to this wisdome, as he Eccle. 6. that soweth vpon hope of haruest; & haue patience for a tyme, to expect her fruites. Thou must labour and take paines a litle in her worke, and soone after shalt thou taste of the commodities she bringeth forth. Oh how vngrateful is she to the ignorant; and a foole will not abide her. [Page 341] She is not reueiled to many; but to whom she is once knowen, with them she re­maineth, vntill she bringe them vnto the sight and presence of God hym self &c. Harken therfore my sonne, & follow her wayes with all thy force &c. For that, at the last daye, thou shalt finde rest in her, & she shal turne thee to great ioye and con­solation.’

This was that blessed and wise mans counsaile: and for fulfilling of this coun­sail, as also for obtaining the rest, ioye, & final consolation wherof here is mentiō; S. Paul crieth so vehementelie vnto vs, exhorting vs euerie wher to doe good workes, and that abundantelie, instante­lie, Gal. 6. in al tymes, to all men, vpon al occa­sions, with immoueable constancie; assu­ring 1. Cor. 15. vs, that our labour herein shall not be lost, but that the tyme shall come, whē we shall reape incessantlie. To which purpose also, appertaineth the parable propounded by our Saueour of the pru­dent Steward, with a verie effectual ex­hortation Luc. 16. in the ende, that in this life we should purchase our selues friendes, by the vse and distribution of our wicked mam­mō, which friendes maye afterward make vs place in heauen. To this effect are dire­cted all those admonitions of holie scripture. VVorke your ovvne saluation: And againe; bretheren, be ye careful to make your vo­cation Philip. 2. 2. Pet. 1. and election sure by good vvorkes. And yet further S. Paul adioyneth an other cir­cumstance, therby to moue vs the soner, [Page 342] saying; VVbile vve haue tyme lett vs doe good vvorkes; insinuating hereby, that this tyme Gal. 6. present was allowed vs onlie for that purpose, and that this tyme being past, ther would be no more place for such matters, a cording to that sage admoni­shement of our Saueour hym self; the night Ioan. 6. vvill come, vvhen no man can vvorke any more.

For preuenting of which night, and The diligē ­ce of [...] Christiās to vvoorke vvhile they had time. to take the tyme while it serued, verie straunge it is to cōsider, the paines, watch­fulnes, and diligence, which auncient holie Christians in former ages did vse, and the sensles forgetfulness wherin we passe our dayes now. They imitated the good husbandman, who is careful to cast his seede into the grounde whiles faire wether lasteth; and the diligent marchāt, who euer stippeth not to lay owe his mo­ney while the good market ēdureth. They knew the tyme would not be lōge, which they had to worke in, & therfore they be­stirred thē selues seriously whiles oppor­tunitie was present. Hereof among other thinges, proceeded all thos goodlie [...] of almes-deedes and charitable workes, yet exstant to the world, as wit­nesses of their excercise in this kinde of wisdome. So many commō wealthes esta­blished, so many churches builded and in­dued with abundant maintenāce; so many All thes [...] [...] for the Church [...] [...] [...] as no good deeds, though he doe dedicate the booke to an Archbishop, and doe seed of the rentes hym self. So lea­ueth he [...] also hospi­tals. &c. By shopprickes, deanries, Archedeacon­ries, Chanonries, Prebendes, Chantries, and Benefices. So manie Hospitales and houses of Orphanes & fatherles infantes, [Page 343] as also for the reliefe of other poore im­potent and distressed people. So many Se­minaries, Schooles, Halles, Colleges, and Vniuersities, for increase of learninge. So many Bridges, highe-wayes, Caussies, Townhouses, and other publique commo­dities. So many places of prayer and deuo­tion; as Monastaries, Abbayes, Priories, Couuentes, Nunries, Eremitages, Cells, Oratories, and other like, for repose of vertuous people that would leaue the worlde, and betake them selues onlie to contemplation of heauenlie thinges, and excercise of a more holie and retired life.

Al which charitable deeds and many The chari­table deeds of our aun­cestours & vvāt ther­of in vs. more that can not be recounted, came out of the purses and coffers of godlie Chri­stians in auncient times; who very often gaue not only of their abondance and superstuities; but spared also from their owne sustenance and necessarie releefe; as also tooke awaie and aliened many things from their owne children and po­steritie, to emploie thē in thes charitable vses, for the benefite of their soules. Wheras on the contrarie side, we that now liue in this miserable corrupt time, are so farre of from geuing away our ne­cessaries, and plucking from our owne bodies to thes offices of charitie: that we make no scruple at all, to spoile the poore and godlie of thes benefites and re­leefes, which were left vnto them by our holie forefathers. And as for our owne superstuities and excesses, we seeke com­mōlie [Page 344] to emploie them, rather on haukes, and dogges, and other brute beastes, (as sometimes also vpō much more vile vses,) then in charitable deedes to the releefe of our poore brethern, and to the ease of our owne soules in the life to come. So vtterly faileth the whole world at this daie, in performing this point of doing good deedes.

Wherfore to drawe to a conclusion of this whole chapter: it may appeare by The per­fection of Christian vocation, if it vvere fulfilled. that which hitherto hath bene said; first, what a perfect and most excellent crea­ture a good Christian is; whos life is nothing els but a continual warfare and resistāce of al sinne, both I thought, word, and deed; and an incessant exercise of al pietie and good workes, which his hand or hart may possibly performe. Which kinde of life, if it were exactly fulfilled, in such sort as it was prescribed by Christ the authour of our profession: most eui­dent it is, that the common weale of Christianitie, should be a most heauenly, blessed; and Angelical estate vpon earth, wherin no fraude, no deceipt, no malice, no contention, no wickednes, iniustice, or violence should raigue: and consequēt­ly, either few or no tēporal lawes should be necessarie for punishment of the same. For that by the only lawe of religion and conscience, al would be simplicitie, al pu­ritie, al truth and honestie, concorde, loue, and charitie, one towardes the other; euē as we read, that it fel out in the first daies [Page 345] and ages of Christian religion, when this lawe of conscience was yet obserued. But now, for that the world hath abandoned commonlie in euery place, thes two prin­cipal partes of Christian dutie, (I meane the resistance of synne, and performance of good workes:) the most part of Chri­stians are become more sensual, and disso­lute in maners and life, then euer were the more ciuile part of Gentiles and In­fideles; which is a most intollerable and supreme dishonour to our Saueour, that gaue his life for reducing vs to a better conuersatiō. For which cause, in al reason, right, and equitie, the punishment of such vnworthie Christians, must needs be farre greater at the later daie, then of the verse Paganes, who had not that light and assi­stance for their direction; according to that speech of Christ to certaine ingrate­ful Townes & places wherin he had prea­ched:‘woe be to thee Corozain: woe be to the Bethsaida; for that, if the like thinges Mat. 11. Luc. 10. had bene done in Tyrus and Sidon (which are heathen Cities,) that haue bene done in the: they would haue repented; & ther­fore I tel you, that it shalbe easier for them in the daie of iudgement, then for you.’Which point, would God that men now adayes would attentiuely consider. The diffe­rence of the vertuous and vvic­ked in this vvorld and in the next.

Secondly; it may appeare by thes, and other thinges before set doune, what a maruelous different life the good and euil doe passe in this world; and consequently, how different a lot they are to receyue in [Page 346] the next, from hym that rewardeth eche man (as S. Paul saieth) according to his ac­tions, Rom. 2. 2. Tim. 4. either good or euil. For first, the vertuous Christiā, doth not only abstaine from committing sinne, (especially that which diuines cal mortal, & which eche man by Gods assistance may eschewe,) but also by cōtinual resisting & fightīg against the same, he encreaseth daily and hourely his Note that Bunny thrusteth out this vvord ML­RIT not onlie here, but in al the booke besi­des, vvhich is almost in euerie leafe of auncient fathers vvry tinges, as also expres­selie Eccles. 16. v. 15. & the value thereof, vvhich is re­tribution for good vvorkes, [...] in euerie place of scripture. Gen. 4. v. 4. Exod. 1. 20. Leu. 11. 43. Psal. 118. 112. Mat. 5. 12. 2. Tim. 4. 8. Heb. 11. 26. &c. merite, for the Crowne of heauē. But the careles man, by yeelding consent of hart to euery leude concupiscence that offereth it self; doth not only not gaine any merite at al, but heapeth vp sinne vpō sinne without ende or number. Againe, the careful man besides auoiding sinne, & the gaine which he gathereth by fighting in that combat; performeth also infinite good workes, at lest wise in hart and de­sire, which is accepted by God for deedes, wher further habilitie faileth. But the lose Christiā, neither in hart or deed doth any good at al; but in place therof com­mitteth infinite euils: so that, as the one employeth his whole mīde, hart, wordes, and handes, with al the forces, and other habilities that God hath lent him, to the doing of good and resisting of euil: so the other bendeth al his powers both of bo­die, minde, and fortune, to the seruice of vanities, the world, and of his owne flesh, and to the encrease of Christes enimies kingdome. And hereby, as the former en­creaseth hourely in merite before God, (wherunto by his holie promisse belon­geth [Page 347] encrease of grace in this life, and of glorie in the life to come:) so the later cō ­tinually, by all his thoughts, wordes, deeds, and endeuours, doth multiplie in stane frō time to time, wherunto of Gods iustice doe appertaine both vengeance and damnation, with the tormente of hel. And in this contrarie course, they passe ouer their liues, for twentie, thirtie, for­tie, more or fewer yeares, and so come to die, eche man with his cōtrarie accompt: which being such as I haue said; can it be maruailous to any man liuinge, if ther be so great diuersitie in their pavementes, & euerlastinge conditions for the world to come; seing their dealinges & recōninges were so opposite and vnequal in this life present?

Learne then (my deare brother) if The cōclu­sion vvith an exhortation thou be wise; by thes and like considera­tions, to awaken thy self while thou hast tyme. If thou finde by examination of the two forsaid partes of Christian dutie, that hyterto thou hast walked avvrye, & hast not perfourmed the life required in that vocation: thanke God for this so great a benefite, as is the reuciling of thy daunger while yet ther is tyme and place to make amendes. Many (no doubt) are this day in tormentes, and shalbe euerla­stinglie, who passed ouer their liues without euer thinking of thes affairs, and if they had receyued so special fauour as thou doest now, in hauing thes matters so particulerlie layed before the; perhappes [Page 348] they had escaped thos eternal calamities, wherin now they are fallen without possibilitie of redresse. Vse then Gods mercie to thy gayne (deare Christian) and not to thy greater and more intolle­rable damnation. Cast not awaye wil­fullie that most precious Inel thy soule, which Christ hath bought so dearlie, and which he desireth so vehementelie to saue, & enriche with grace & euer lasting glorie; if thou wouldest yeeld the same into his handes, and be content to direct thy life according to his most hoiie and sweet com­maundementes.

OF THE ACCOMPT WHICH CHRISTIANS MVST YEELD TO GOD of the duties and offices be­fore rehearsed. As also the Maiestie, seueritie, terrour, and other circumstances of that reconinge day, vvith tvvo seueral times appointed for that purpose. CHAPT. VII.

AS IN euerie office and charge com­mitted to a seruant A points of great vvisdome. in this life, it is a principall point of wisdome, to consi­der and beare in minde, what accōpt & reckonig shal be demaunded therof by him who placed him in that roome; as also, what nature and disposition his master is of in taking his audite; that is, whether exact or remisse, facile or rigo­rous, milde or sterne; and whether he haue power to punishe at his pleasure if he [Page 350] finde hym faultie: euen so it behoueth a careful Christian man, in the charge of his life and dutie before mentioned and declared, verie diligently to waighe and ponder with him self, what maner of reckoning his Lord and Saueour wil re­quire at his handes, and in what termes, either of rigour or lenitie, facilitie or se­ueritie, he will proceed with hym in that accompt or audite. Which thing a prudēt man may easelie conceyue by considera­tion of thes two points which ensue.

First; if he waighe the manner, order, and circumstances, wherby his charge, Hovv the lavve of good life vvas pub­lished. Exod. 19. & 20. that is, the lawe and rule of his conuersa­tion was published and proclaymed by God vnto the world. Which thing is set forth at large in the booke of Exodus, wher is described with what maruelous and dreadful maiestie, feare, terrour, thunder, and sound of trumpets, the ten commandements of God (which con­taine the perfect forme of a vertuous Act. 7. life) were pronounced by Angels vnto the people of Israel. Which terrour and maiestie, S. Paul applieth expressie to this Heb. 12. meaning, that we should greatly tremble to violate or transgresse this law, which was deliuered with such circumstance of dread and horrour: seing that the lawes of great princes & potentates, are exacted commonly and executed vpon the offen­dours, with much more terrour then they were proclaimed.

Secondly; the same in part may be con­ceyued; [Page 351] if we consider what Iudge or Au­ditour VVho and vvhat ma­ner of au­ditour shall receyue our accomptes. 2. Cor. 5. Luc. 12. 16. 19. 20. we shal haue in this accompt. Which S. Paul declareth plainly in thes words. VVe must al be sommoned before the tribunal seate of Christ, and euerie man receyue either good or euil, according as he hath behaued him self vvbiles he liued vpon earth. Which thing Christ hym self confirmeth in di­uers parables, when he promiseth to take accompt of al his talents lent vnto his seruants in this world. And in S. Mathews Ghospel he expresseth the particuler ma­ner Mat. 16. of that accompt, saing: The Sonne of man shal come vvith his Angels in the glorie of his Father to take an accompt, and then shal he giue Mat. 16. vnto euerie man according to his vvorkes. And yet more particularly and seuerely of the same matter and daie: I saie vnto you, that euerie idle vvord that men shal speake, they shal giue accompt therof in the daie of iudgment. By Mat. 12. which speech of our Saueour we are ad­monished, not only that we shal giue an accompt of our doinges, but also that we shal yeeld the same to him self, who saieth in an other place, Ego sum Iudex & testis, I am both Iudge and witnes in this ac­compt. Iere. 29. We are instructed also, that this ac­compt shalbe most exact and exquisite, not omitting the least errours and offenses that haue passed in our life: That parti­culer reward or punishment shalbe assi­gned to eche mā, cōfourme to the qualitie of his accompt: And finally, that this ac­compt or day of reconning, (for declara­tion of the terrour & maiestie that shalbe [Page 352] vsed therin,) is called here by Christ, a iudgment and tribunal, wherin sentence of life or death is to be pronounced.

Of which iudgmente or accompting daye, the scripture noteth vnto vs two Tvvo daies of Iudge­ment. kindes. The first wherof is called a parti­culer iudgment, for that it is exercised vpon euerie soule immediately after her departure from the bodie, according to the wordes of holie S. Paul; It is appointed 1. Particuler. Heb. 9. 2. General. for euery man once to die, and after that to haue his iudgment. The second is called a general iudgment, for that it shal be executed vpō al the world together at the last daie, when mankinde shalbe translated from this terrestrial habitation. And of this iudgement, are to be vnderstood aswel thos former wordes of Christ, touching his cōming in glorie, as also infinite other places and passages of Scripture, which doe forewarne and admonish vs of this most dreadful daie. And albeit in the first particuler iudgment, eche soule that de­parteth hence, receyueth an irrevocable sentence, either of life or death eternal, (as may appeare by the examples of La­zarus Iuc. 16. and of the riche glutton, wherof the one was determined to euerlasting re­pose, and the other to eternal torments immediatly vpon their separation from this world:) yet are ther alleaged by the holie Saintes of God, diuers most cleare, facile, and euident reasons, why his di­uine wisdome, besides that first priuate and particuler daie of trial, hath ordained [Page 353] also this second, which shalbe publicke, manifest, and vniuersal.

The first wherof, is; that the bodie of 1 man rising from his sepulcher at that daie, Fovver reasones vvhie ther is a second iudgement. may be partaker of eternal punishment or glorie with the soule, euen as in this life, it was participant of the vertues or vices which the soule did exercise. The second reason is; for that as Christ was 2 contemptible in this world, and disho­noured publiquily, and put to confusion with his Saints after him in the sight of al men: so was it conuenient that once in this world, he should shewe his power and maiestie, and that in the sight of al his creatures together, but especially of his wicked enimies, who after that daie are neuer to see or beholde him more. The third is; that both wicked sinners & 3 blessed Saītes of God, might receyue their rewardes and final paimentes openly, in the sight and hearing of eche other; to the more hart breake and confusion of the im­pious, and triumphāt ioye of the vertuous, who commonly in this world, were con­temned, ouerborne, and troden doune by the other. The fourth and last is; for that 4 men when they die, doe not commonly cary with them al the good or euil which they haue wrought; hauing left behinde them diuers thinges, which may encrease their merite or demerite after their deathes: as are their examples; their in­structions gyuen to other; their temporal faculties or abilities; bookes, preachings, [Page 354] exhortatiōs, & other like meanes, wher­by good or euil may proceede after their departure. The reward wherof, can not so conueniently be assigned vnto thē whiles this world endureth, for that their ioyes or punishmentes in the places wher they are, may daily be augmented, by the hurt or good that may be wrought in the world, by thos meanes which they left behind them.

So diuines doe holde, (for examples Oh that mē vvould cō ­sider vvel this reason. sake) that the glorie of S. Paul is encrea­sed daily in heauen, and shalbe vnto the worlds ende, by reason of them that daily doe profite by his writing and rare exam­plar life vpon earth: as also on the con­trarie part, that the tormentes of Arrius, Sabellius, and other wicked heretiques; Heretikes. are continually augmented, by the num­bers of thē who frō time to time are cor­rupted with their seditious and pestilent writiges. The like they holde of dissolute Loose Poe­tes. Poets and other loose writers, which haue left behind them lasciuious, wantō, and carnal deuises; as also of negligent parents, maisters, or teachers, who by Euil Pa­rentes. their rechelesnes and euil examples gaue occasion to corrupte the children, cho­lers, or seruants committed to their go­uerment and instruction. But after this general daie of iudgment once past, their shalbe no more place of meriting either good or euil; for that the world then and ther shal receyue an ende, and a final sen­tence be pronounced of what soeuer [Page 355] hath passed from the first foundation and establishment therof.

Of this last and general iudgment then, which containeth a confirmation or ra­tefying of the particuler going before, as also a final conclusion, clearing, and knit­ting vp of al accomptes and reckonings with mākinde, for his trafique & steward­ship in this worldlie pilgrimage: The Hovv ne­cessarie the [...] is of the last day of iudg­ment. holie Scripture of God amoni heth vs most carefully to haue continual remem­brance and consideration, as of the grea­test and most important busines that euer we shal deale in, and as the forceblest means to restraine vs from sinne. that pos­siblie may be deuised among [...] men in this life. For of this were vttered thos wordes especiallie, beare in minde the last end of all thinges, and thon shalt iot synne euerla­stinglie. Eccles. 7. Which holie Dauid seemed to haue experienced in hym self when he wrote as foloweth. I haue obserued the vvayes of my Lord, neither haue I committed vvickedness against Psal. 57. my God; for that his iudgements vvere alvvaye in my sight, and his iustice I haue not cast out of my mynd. And (by thes meanes) I shalbe vnspotted in his presence, and vvill keepe my self from com­mitting iniquitie. Hence it is that the blessed Prophet Moyses when he saw the peo­ple of Israel careles in committing synne, cried out in zeale; ō foolishe Nation vvithout Deut. 32. vvisdom or councel; vvould God they had vvitt and vnderstanding, and vvould forsee the end of thinges to come. As who would say; if they had so much witt as to consider this, and [Page 356] what accompt they must gyue to God at the last day of their doinges; they would not offend hym as they doe. But as the scripture saith in an other place, for that this day of reconing is disterred; and for that Gods iudgment is not pronounced presentelie Eccles. S. against the vvicked: the children of men doe com­mit vvickednes daylie vvithout ail feare. We haue then to consider in this place, for our owne instruction and good admoni­shement in life, what maner of accomp­ting daye this shalbe, whos remembrance is so much and often commended vnto vs in holie scripture. For better conceyuing [...] poīts of this chapter. wherof, we shall deuide this chapter into three principal heades or pointes.

The first wherof, shalbe of preparatiōs or 1 preābles, assigned to goe before this daye.

The second, of thinges that shall passe 2 and be executed at that daye.

The third, of that which is to ensue 3 vpon the sentence gyuen and the iudge­ment ended.

CONCERNING THE FIRST, it is THE. 1. parte. OF prepa­rations. to be noted, that for the more dread and Maiestie of this great daie, the eternal wisdome of God hath ordained and re­uealed vnto vs, that before the comming therof, when it approcheth nere, thershal most wonderful and horrible prepara­tions, signes, and tokens appeare in the world. The first wherof, shalbe the gar­boiles, tumultes, and commotions of all Nations, kingdomes, and people vpon earth. Which our Saueour hymself descri­bed [Page 357] in thes wordes to his Apostles: VVhen you shal heare the fame or brute of vvar­res and vprores; be not afraid: for that thes thinges must be, and yet presently the ende of the world shal not ensue. One nation shal rise Luc. 2 [...] against an other, and one kingdome shal impugne another: ther shalbe great earth-quakes, pesti­lence, and famine; most terrible signes and tokens from heauē. Vpon which wordes of our Sa­ueour Greg. hom. 35. in Euā. the blessed father S. Gregorie hath this discourse. ‘The last tribulation must haue many tribulations going before it; and by thes manifold afflictions precedēt, are declared the eternal afflictions that must ensue. And therfore Christ said, that after warres and vprores, the ende should not immediatly folowe: for that, it beho­ueth that many transitorie calamities should goe before; to denounce vnto vs the endles woes which are to come after.’

Thes warres, tumultes, and most dread­full confusions here signified by Christ, are specified more plainly in other places of holie writ; but especially by Ezechiel, Ezech. 38 Dan. 7. Apoc. 13. See S. Ierome com. in cap. 7. Dan. Daniel, and S. Ihon in his reuelations. Wher it is prophetied, that a litle before the last general daie of iudgment, ther shalbe reuealed the man of sinne, called Antechrist; who after the conquest of many kings & kingdomes, shal make hym self the Monarch and absolute owner of the world; and shal exercise vpon good Christians more barbarous crueltie, and shed more innocent blood, within the space of three yeares and a half (which [Page 358] shalbe the terme of his outragious tiran­nie, Dan. 12.) then al other ennimies of God haue done from the beginning. The matter is described most strangely by the Prophete Ezechiel. Who after declaration of one most bloodie bataile to be fought by Ie­rusalem, wherin he saieth figuratiuely, that the weapons of such as shalbe slaine, shalbe sufficient to make fire for seuen yeares after: he adioyneth in the person of God this narration. I haue spoken in my zeale, and in the fire of my wrath haue I promised, that in the last daies when Ezech. c. 38. & 39. Gog and Magog shal come into the world (by thes names are signified the armie of Antechrist,) ther shalbe a great commo­tion A moste vvonderful prophetie of the slaugo­ter to be cō ­mitted by Antechrist. vpon the earth, and the fishe of the sea, the birdes of the aire, the beastes of the field, & al that crecpeth on the groūd, together with al humane generation which liueth vpon the face of the earth, shalbe in an vprore before my face. ‘Hilles shalbe ouerturned; hedges shalbe broken doune; & euery strong wal shal fal to the ground. I wil cal against them the sword, from the toppes of al mountaines; and euery mans sword shalbe bent against his owne brother. My iudgment shalbe in pestilence, and blood, and vehement stor­mes, & in huge stones that shal fal doune. I wil raine fire and brimstone. &c. And thou sonne of mā tel vnto al the foules & birdes of the aire, and to al the rauenous beastes of the field: assemble your selues; make haste; come together, from al quar­ters, [Page 359] to feede of the sacrifice which I shal prepare vnto you: a great sacrifice, vpon the mountaines of Israel. You shal eate the flesh of stoute champions, and shall drincke the blood of Princes. You shall feede of their fat vntil you be cloide, and you shal drincke their bloode til you be druncke. You shal be filled at this my ta­ble, and al Nations shal see this my iudge­ment that I haue exercised, and in what maner I haue stretched out my potent hād vpon them.’

Thus much hath the word of God, and muche more, (which for breuitie I doe The 2. Kynde of prepara­tions. omit.) of the greate miseries & cōfusions that shalbe among men, some litle time before the daie of iudgment. Which time being expired; ther shal ensue other pre­parations in the heauens and eliments of the world, much more dreadful then thes. Which by Christ hym self and his Saintes are described in this maner.‘At that daie ther shalbe signes in the Sunne, in the Luc. 21. Mat. 24. Mar. 13. 2. Pet. 3. Moone, & in the starres. The sunne shalbe darkened; the moone shal giue no light; the starres shal fal from the skies; and al the powers of heauen shalbe moued. The firmament shal forsake his situation with great violence; the elements shalbe dis­solued with heat; and the whole earth with al that is in it, shalbe consumed with fire. The firme land shal moue and leaue her place, and shal flie away like a doae; the pressures of Nations vpō earth shalbe inestimable, by reason of thes thinges) and [Page 360] through the confusion of hideous noise from the sea and floudes; and men shal wither away and drie vp for feare and expectation of the thinges, which at that day shal happen to the vniuersal world.’ Thus farre out of the Ghospel.

But S. Iohn the dearly beloued disci­ple of our Saueour, setteth out the same Apoc. 6. A moste vvonderful reuelation of S. Iohn. more at large, according as it was reuea­led vnto him, i this maner. ‘I heard (saieth he) a voice like the sound of a thunder, saing; come and see; and I did see. And beholde, a white horse and one that sat vpon him that had a bowe; and he went to conquere. After which folowed a blacke horse, and he that rode vpon him had a paire of balance in his hande. After him passed forth a pale horse, and he that sat vpon him was called, DEATH, and Death. Hel. HEL folowed behinde him; and he had authoritie giuen to him, to slea by sword, by death, and by the beastes of the earth. The earth did shake; the sunne grewe blacke like a sacke; the moone like blood; the Starres fel from heauē; the skie dou­bled it self like a folded booke; euery hil and Iland was moued from his place: the kinges of the earth, and princes, and tribunes, and the riche and stoute hid thē selues in dennes and in the rockes of hil­les. Then appeared ther seuen Angels Seuen trū ­petes & se­uen blastes. with seuen trumpetes, and eche one pre­pared him self to blowe his blast. At the first blast, came ther haile and fire mixt 1 with blood. At the second blast, came 2 [Page 361] a whole mountaine of burning fire into the sea, and the third part of the sea was made blood. At the third blast fel ther a 3 great Starre from heauen named Absinthiū, burning like a torch, and infected the ri­uers and fountaines. At the fourth blast 4 was stricken doune the third part of the sunne, moone, & Starres; & an egle flewe into the element crying with a hideous voice; woe, woe, woe to al them that dwel vpon the earth.’

At the fifte blast fel an other starre from
Apoc. 9.
heauen, which had the keye of the pit of 5 hel: & he opened the pit, and ther arose a smoke as from a great fornace; and ther came forth certaine locustes like scor­pions, who tormented al such as had not the marke of God in their foreheads. And at thes daies men shal seeke death and shal not finde it. And thes locustes were like
VVōderful locustes.
barbed horses, with Crounes on their heads. Their faces like men, their heare like women, their teeth like lions, and the noise of their winges, like the noise of many chariotes running together; their tales like scorpiōs, and their stinges were in their tailes: their king was an Angel of hel, named Abbadō; which sig­nifieth an vtter destroier. At the sixt blast 6 of the trumpet were loosed foure Angels tied before; & then rushed forth an army of horsmen in number twentie hundreth times tē thousand. And I sawe the horses, and they which sat vpon them had brest­places of fire and brimstone. The heads of [Page 362] thes horses were as lions, & out of their mouthes came fire, smoke, and brim­stone, wherby they slewe the third part of men which had not repented; and their strength was in their tales, which were like serpentes. Then was ther an Angel which putting one foote vpon the sea, & an other vpon the land, did sweare by him that liueth for euer and euer, that after the blast of the seuenth trumpet, ther should be no more time. And so when the seuenth 7 Angel had sounded, ther came great voi­ces
Apoc. 11.
from heauen, saying; the kingdome of this world is made to our Lord and his Christ, and he shal raigne foreuer.

‘And I heard a great voice saying to the seuen Angels; goe and poure out seuen Apoc. 16. The seuen cuppes of Codesire. cuppes of Godes wrath vpon the earth; and so they did. And the first brought forth cruel woundes vpō men. The lecōd turned the sea into redde blood. The third turned the riuers and fountaines into like blood. The fourth, afflicted men with fire and made them blaspheme God. The fifte made them eate their owne tongues for sorowe. The sixt dried vp the water. And I sawe three foule spirites like frogges, issue out of the mouth of a dragon. And finally the seuenth cuppe being poured out, ther came a mightie voice from the throne of God, saying; it is dispatched. And ther folowed lightenings, and thun­ders, and voices, and earthquakes, such as neuer were since men dwelt vpon the earth.’ Thus farre this Apostle, Euange list [Page 363] and prophet S. Iohn.

And now tel me, (my good Christiā bro­ther,) is it possible for any tongue either A inconsideratiō vpon the [...]. humane or Angelical, to expresse a thing more forceblie thē this is here set doune? what mortal hart can chuse but tremble, euen at the reading and remembrāce only of thes inspeakable and incomprehensi­ble terrours? What maner of daie will that be (trowest thou,) when the heauens shal mourne, the whole earth shal shake, the sunne and moone loose their light, the Starres fal doune, the sea and floods forsake their chanels and natural courses, al the elementes be dissolued, the face of the earth ouerflowed with blood, and the vniuersal world on a flaming fire? Is it maruaile now, if the Scriptures Sopho. 1. Psal. 74. auouch that the iust men and Angels them selues shalbe afraid of that daie? And then to reason as S. Peter doth; if innocency & 1. Pet. 4. Iustice shal scarsely esteeme them selues secure in that fearful trial: what shal be­come of sinne and iniquitie? what shal be­come (I saie) of the careles and dissolute Christian, when he shal see so infinite a sea of miseries rushe vpon him? O that mē would thincke vpon this daie while they haue yet time! O that they would awake and prepare them selues by vertuous life to stand secure & confident at this woful houre. Who is ther now a daye which taketh that care that holy Ierome did, who was wont to saie (hauing much lesse [...]. [...] 14. ad [...]. cause then wee,) that he did neuer eate, [Page 364] nor drincke, nor sleepe, nor take any other action in hand, without the fearful remembrance of this accompting daie. And this of the preparations. There fo­loweth the execution of thinges done in that iudgment.

VVHEN THE FORMER prepa­rations THE. 2. parte. OF thinges that must passe in this Iudgement. shalbe fulfilled and finished, and the whole world brought to that pitiful state and plight, which I haue described; ‘then (saieth the Scripture) shal the signe of the fonne of man appeare in the skie; and al the tribes of the earth shal see him cōming in the cloudes of heauē, amiddest Mat. 25. Iuc. 21. al his Angels, with much power and glo­rie, in great authoritie and maiestie. And ther in a moment, in the twinckling of an eye, he shal send his Angels with a 1. Cor. 13. trūpet, & with a great crie at midnight, & they shal gather together his elect from the foure partes of the world, euen from heauen to earth.’ Hitherto are the wordes of holie Scripture. Wherin is set doune the first act of this dreadful iudgment, which is the cōming of the Iudge to his throne and tribunal seate; so much the more terrible and ful of maiestie in this The com­ming of the Iudge. his second appearāce, by how much more contemptible he was and despised in his first being vpon earth for the worke of our redemption. So S. Iohn affirmed, that Apoc. 5. & 13. he which was siaine as a lambe, should come againe to iudge as a Lion. Of which cōming, the Prophete Malachies wordes are. Beholde our Lord shal come and vvho shalbe Mal. 3. [Page 365] able to abide the daie of his comming? And the Prophete Esaie addeth further touching the same cōming; that the verie mountaines Esa. 64. shalmelt at that daie before his face. And yet further he describeth the same in an other place thus. Beholde our Lord shal come in strength and sortitude, as a storme of haile, and as avvhyrle vvinde breaking and throvving doune vvhat soeuer standeth in his vvaie; as a rage of Esa. 28. many vvaters that ouer-stovve and rushe toge­ther &c. Wherunto the Prophet Dauid an­nexeth, that burning fire shal runne before his Psal. 49. face, and on euery side of him, a violent tempest.

This terrible Iudge then being set, and The maner of the Iudg­ment. al creatures of the world conuented be­fore him; the Scripture laieth doune vnto vs, the order of that iudgment, described by Daniel in thes wordes. I stoode (saieth Dan. 7. he) vvith attention; and I savve certaine seates placed, and the Auncient of yeares sate doune in iudgment. Thousand thousands vvere attendant to serue him; and ten hundreth thousand thou­sands, stood vvaiting before him. The iudgment vvas settled, and the bookes vvere opened. Thus much was reueyled to Daniel, without declaration what bookes thos were. But to S. Iohn the same were made manifest; who expoundeth the matter thus: I savve Apoc. 20. (saieth he) a great bright throne, and one that sate vpon the same, before vvhos face both heauē and earth did tremble. &c. And I savve al thos that vvere dead, both great and smal, standing before the throne. And the bookes vvere ther opened, and al thos that vvere dead had their iudgemēt, according to the thinges vvhich vvere [Page 366] vvriten in thos bookes; euery one according to his vvorkes. By which wordes we are gyué to vnderstand, that the books which at that daie shalbe opened, and wherby our cause must be discerned, shalbe the euidences of our deedes and actions in this life, recor­ded in the testimonie of our owne con­sciences, and in the infallible memorie of Gods inscrutable wisdome. Wherūto shal gyue witnes in that place against the re­probate, The store of vvitnesses agaīst as at the last day. both heauen and earth which were created for them; the Sunne and Moone with all the starres and planetes, which from the beginning of the world haue serued them; the elements and other creatures inordinately loued and abused by them; their compagnions ther present with whom they sinned; their brethern whom they afflicted; the preachers and other Saints of God whom they contem­ned; and aboue al other thinges, the en­signe and standard of their redemption, I meane the triumphant Crosse of Christ, which shal at that daie be erected in the sight of all the world. Al thes (I saye) with infinite other thinges, shal thē beare witnes against the wicked, and condemne them of intollerable ingratitude, in that they offended so gratious and bountiful a Lord, as by so manifold benefites allured The consi­dence of the good, and terrour of the vvic­ked. them to loue and serue him.

‘At this daie, (saieth the Scripture,) shal the iust stand in great constancie against thos by whom they were afflicted, and oppressed in this life. And the wicked see­ing [Page 367] this, shalbe surprised with a horrible Sap. 5. Luc. 25. Apoc. 6. feare, and shal saie vnto the hilles, fal vpō vs and hide vs, from the face of him that fitteth vpon the throne, and from the in­dignatiō of the Lambe; for that the great daie of wrath is now come.’ O merciful Lord, how great a daie of wrath shal this be? how truly said thy Prophete in his me­ditation of this daie; vvho can conceyue the Psal. 89. povver of thy vvrath, or vvho is able for very scare, to recount the greatnes of thine indignatiō? This is that daie of thine, wherof thy ser­uant said so long before; that thy zeale and Prou. 6. surie should spare none in this daie of reuenge, nether should yeeld or be moued vvith any mans supplication; nor should admit revvards for the deliuery of any man. This is that most dread­ful daie of thine, wherof thy holy Pro­phete admonished vs, when he said; Behold Esa. 13. the daie of our Lord shal come; a cruel daie, ful of indignation, vvrath, and surie, to bring the earth into a vvildernes, and to crushe in peeces the sinners therof. And an other Prophete of the self same daie: behold the daie of our Lord dot bcome; a daie of darknes and dimnes; a daie of Ioel. 2. cloudes and stormes; a most terrible daie, and such an one, as vvas neuer from the beginning of the vvorld, nor shalbe after in al eternitic. This is Godsday. thy daie (ô Lord) and so properly thou wilt haue it called; like as it pleaseth thy goodnes to terme the course of this pre­sent life, the daie of man. For that as in the time of this present world, thou art con­tent Mans day. to holde thy peace and be patient, and suffer sinners to doe their wil: euen so. [Page 368] at this last daie, thou wilt rise vp & pleade for thine owne glorie, and wilt make thy self knowen to the terrour of thine enimies, according as thy seruant Dauid foretold of the when he said; Cognescetur Dominus iudicia faciens. God wil be knowé, Psal. 9. when he shal come to doe iudgment.

Good God, what a maruailous daie shal this be, when we shal see al the chil­dren A dread­full daye. of Adam gathered together from al corners and quarters of the earth; when (as S. Iohn saieth) the sea and land shal Apoc. 20. yeeld their dead bodies, and both hel and heauenshal restore the soules which they possesse, to be vnited to thos bodies? What a wonderful meeting wil this be, (deare Christian,) how ioyful to the good, and how lamentable, doleful, and terrible to the wicked? The godlie and righteous, being to receyue the bodies wherin they liued, into the league & felowship of their eternal blisse; shal embrase them with al possible swetnes and delight, singing with the prophet; Behold, hovv good & plea­sant Psal. 132. a thing it is, for brethern (or parteners) to dvvel together in unitie. But the miserable damned spirites, beholding the carcaies which were the instruments and occasiós of their sinne; & wel knowing that their inspeakable tormentes, shalbe encreated by their mutual coniunction and associa­tion: shal abhorre and vtterly derest the same, & curse the daic that euer they were acquainted together; inueighing most bitterly against all the partes and semes [Page 369] therof, as against the eies, for whos cu­rious delighte so many vanities were seught; the eares, for whos pleasure and daliance so great varietie of sweet sounds and melodie was procured; the mouth and taste, for whos contentemēt and fond satisfaction, so innumerable delicacies were deuised. And to be short, the backe and belly with other sensual partes, for contentatió of whos riotous volupteoul­nes, both sea and land were sifted and turmoiled.

This shalbe the most sorowful condi­tion of thes infortunate soules at that daie: but this sorowe shal not auaile them. For the iudgment must passe on. And then (saieth the Scripture) shal christ separate Mat. 25. the sheepe frō the goates, & shal place his sheepe on the right hand, and the goates on the lest. O most dreadful separation: what would Alexander, Caesar, Pompeie, and other To late to repēt at the day of iudg­ment. such potentates of the earth giue at that daie, to haue but the lowest roome amōg them of the right hand. They (I saie) who had al the roome of this world at their pleasure, & al dignities vnder their owne commandrie, would now make more ac­compt of the meanest place and corner among Gods elect, then of al the pompe and brauerie of ten thousand worldes, if they were to liue againe: their cogitatiōs at this daie, being farre different from that they were vpon earth, and their iudgmēts wholy contrary. But (alas) ther is no time of alteration or amendment now. They [Page 370] must stand to that which is past, and ac­cording to their former demeanours they must receyue their doome. They haue a Iudge present, whose power they can not auoide; whos wisdome they can not de­ceyue; whos equitie they can not bowe; whos seueritie they can not mollefie; whos indignation they can not appease; whos determination they can not alter; and from whose sentence they can not possiblie appeale.

O my deare and louing brother; no tongue of man (beleeue me) can expresse, The treasure of a good cons­ciēce at the day of iudg­ment. what a singuler treasure a good consciēce wil be at this daie, when thou shalt see al the Princes and Monarches of this world stand ther naked, trembling, & appalled; being vtterly destitute of an answere to the whole multitude of their most secret sinnes, displaied openly before their faces An vnspottel conscience (I say) at this instant, shal be a greater consola­tion, then al the dignities or pleasures of a thousand worldes. For wealth wil not help; the iudge wil take no giftes; our owne submission wil not be admitted; in­treatie of friēdes wil not preuaile; inter­cession of Angels and other Saintes shal haue no place; for that their glorie shalbe at this daie (as the prophete saieth) to binde kings in fetters, & noble princes in yron manacles, to execute vpon them the iudgement Psal. 149. prescribed. Alas, what wil al thos delicate and daintie people doe at this instāt, who liue now in ease and pleasures, and can [Page 371] take no paine in the seruice of God, nor abide to heare the naming of this daye? what shift (I saie) wil they finde out ī thos extremities? whether wil they tur ne thē? whos help wil they craue? They shal see al things crie vengeance round about thē; al things yeeld them cause of feare and horrour; but nothing any one sparcle of hope or consolation. Aboue them, they A most [...] case and condi­tion. shal beholde their Iudge offended with their wickednes; beneath them, hel open, and the cruel fornace redie boiling to re­cevue them to torment. On the right hād, shalbe their sinnes accusing them; on the left hād, the Diuels redie to execute Gods eternal sentēce vpon them. Within them, shal lye their conscience gnawing; with­out them. al damned soules bewailing; on euery side the whole world burning.

O merciful Iesus, which art to behold this ruful spectacle; what a passage shal Attend ne­gligēt Chri­stian. this be? what wil the wretched sinner doe, saie, or thincke when he shal be enui­roned with thes inexplicable miseries? how wil his hart susteine thes anguishes? what waie wil he take? To goe backe is impossible; to goe foreward is intollera­ble; to stand ther stil is not permitted; what then shal he doe, but as thou (O Marc. 14. Lord) with thy sacred mouth hast fore­told; that he shal drie and wither vp for verie feare; seeke death, and death shal flie from him; crie and beseech the hilles and Apoc. 6. & 9. mountaines to fal doune and couer him, and they refusing to doe him that releefe, [Page 372] or afford him so great a comfort; he shal stand ther, as a most desperate, forlorne, and miserable catise, vntil he receyue that dreadful and irreuocable sentēce of thine; Goe yee accur sed into euerlasting fire. Math. 25.

THIS SHALBE THE LAST act and conclusiō of this woful tragedie. For THE. 3. part of this chap­ter. OF the end and that vvhich shal ensue. so it is recorded by the Iudge him self.‘Then shal the sonne of man saie to thos on his right hand. Come yee blessed of my father, and possesse the kingdome which is prepared for you, from the beginning of the world. I was hungrie and you gaue me to eate; I was a straūger and you gaue Math. 25. me harbour; I was naked and you clothed me; I was sicke and you visited me; I was in prison and you came to comfort me. And to them on his left hand he shal saie. Depart from me yee accursed into euerla­sting fire, prepared for the Deuil and his Angels; for I was hungrie and you fedde me not; I was a straunger and you harbou­red me not; I was naked and you clothed me not; I was sicke and in prison, and you visited me not. Then shal they saie vnto him; O Lord when haue we sene the hun­grie, thirstie, or a straunger, or naked, or sicke, or in prison, and did not minister vnto the? And he shal answere: I tel you, for that you haue not done thes thinges to one of thes lesser (your brethern;) you haue not done them to me. And then thes wicked shal goe into eternal punishment, and the iust into life euerlasting.’ Hitherto are the wordes of Christ him self.

[Page 373] In which may be noted, first; that in recounting the causes of thes miserable Notes vpon Christes last sentence. mens damnation, our Saueour alleageth not lacke of beleef, or that they were not faithful; wherof the reason may be that, which him self vttereth in an other place 1. Ioa. 3. of Infidels, saying; he that beleeueth not, is al­redy iudged. And S. Paul of an heretique; that he is condemned by his ovvne proper iudgmēt. Tit. 3. 2. Secondly; he obiecteth against them, not any actual enormous sinnes; wherof (per haps) maie be assigned for a reason, which S. Iohn doth insinuate and signifie, that 1. Ioa. 3. & 5. such kinde of manifest & deadlie sinners, are now euidently appertaining to the dominion of Satan. Wherfore Christ vr­geth only agaīst thes reprobates, certaine omissions of good workes and chari­table deeds, commended vnto vs by the rule of Christiā perfectiō. Maske vvel this pointe, ô carles Chri­stian. And for thes, he pronounceth against them, his most dreadful sentence of euerlasting damna­tion. Which sentence being once passed the Iudges mouth, and recevued in the eares of al that infinite assemblie ther pre­sent: imagine thou my soule, what an vni­uersal shoute and outcrie will therupon straight ensue: the saued; reioysing and sin­ging eternal praises in the glorie of their Saueour; the damned, bewailing, blasphe­ming, and cursing the daie of their natiui­tie; the Angels, commending and extol­ling the equitie of that iudgment, against which the parties that are conuicted, shal not be able to finde any lest exceptiō. Cō ­sider [Page 374] the intollerable vpbrading of thos most insolent infernal spirites, against the miserable condemned soules that are de­liuered to their praie: with how bitter scoffes and tantes, wil they traile them to their torments? with what intollerable insultation wil they execute the sentence of God against them? Consider, the eter­nal separation that now must be made of A vveeful separation. Fathers and children, of mothers and daughters, friendes and companions; the one to glorie the other to miserie, with­out any hope euer to heare or see any more the one the other. And that which shall be as great a grief as any of the rest; the sonne or daughter going to rest and ioye, shal not take pitie of their owne parents or friends that are caried to calamities: but rather shall reioice therat, for that it redoundeth to Gods glorie, for execution of his Iu­stice.

O my soule, which now art here con­sidering of thes thinges a farre of, and thē shalt be present to see them actuallie be­fore thine eyes; what a doleful separation wil this be? what a fare-wel? what a par­ting? whos hart would not breake at that daie, to abide this intollerable seuering, if a hart could then breake, & therby make some ende of his paines? But so much ease The vand­tie of al vvorldlie prefermētes as the List. wil not be permitted. O yee children and louers of this world; wher will al your delights, recreations, and vanities be at this daie? Al your pleasant pastimes; al [Page 375] your pride and brauerie in apparel; your glistering in gold; your sweet sauours of perfumes; your honours of cappe and knee; your adulation of flatterers? your delicate faire and daintie dishes; your mu­sike; your wanton daliances, and pleasant entertainments? Wher are all your good friēdes and merie compagniōs, accustomed to laugh and disport the time with you? Are al now gone. O vanitie of vanities; now when you haue most need of them, they are furthest of from you, and the re­mēbrāce therof shal doe nothing but tor­mēt you. O my deare brethern, how soure wil al the pleasures past of this world seeme at that howre? How doleful wil the cogitation therof be vnto vs? how friuolous a thing wil al our dignities, ri­ches, offices, and other preferments ap­peare, wherin we take such excessiue delight now, and doe weary out our spi­rites for gaining the same? And on the contrarie side, how ioyful wil that man be at this instant, who hath attended to lead a vertuous life, in resisting of finne & doing good works, albeit it were with much paine and contempt in this world? Most happie creature shal he be, that euer he was borne; and ouer-whelmed with al ioye that euer he tooke that path in hād; and no tongue but Gods, can expresse his happines.

Wherfore here (my louing brother) The cōclusiō of the vvbel chapter. to make an ende, and to frame no other cōclusion of al this whole declaratiō, but [Page 376] only that which Christ himself doth make vnto vs (who being the chief actour that shal deale in this affaire, knoweth best of al other what counsail to giue:) let vs có­sider with our selues, euē in the very bottō of our hartes, how easie a matter it is now in this life, with a litle paine and diligéce, to auoide the danger of this most dreadful daie. For which cause also it is most certaine, that the same is foretolde vs, and so often vrged in holy write to our remembrance; as in like manner, so particulerly described by our most merci­ful iudge & Saueour, to the ende we should by thes seuere & earnest admonishmits, be stirred vp to prepare our selues for it. So Christ himself doth most euidentlie de­clare, whē after al his former threatniges he cōcludeth in thes most sweete wordes of exhortation. ‘Looke about your selues; Marc. 13. watch and praie; for you knowe not whé the time shal be. But as I saie to you, so I saie to al men: be watchful.’And yet fur­ther Math. 24. in an other place he adioineth. ‘Attēd vnto your selues, that your hartes be not ouercome with eating, and drincking, & with the cares of this life, and so that daio ouertake you vpon the suddaine. &c. Be you therfore watchful, and alwayes praye, that you may be worthie to escape althes thinges which are to come, and to stand confidently before the sonne of mā at that daye.’

Thes are the words and forewarnings of thy Iudge and Saueour, vnto thee my [Page 377] soule. And what more friendly and fa­therly The svveet and father­lie dealing of Christ vvith vs. 2. Pet. 3. exhortation couldest thou desire; Canst thou plead ignorance in this affaire hereafter? If thou thincke so; heare yet a further admonishment of his chief Apo­stle. ‘The daie of our Lord (saieth he) shal come as a theef (when men thincke not of it,) In which the heauens and elemēts shalbe dissolued; and al the earth with her inhabitants shalbe consumed with fire.’Which being so; what maner of men ought we to be in holie conuersation and pietie, expecting and going on to meet with this daie of our Lord &c.? In which wordes of S. Peter, is diligently to be noted, that this meeting with the daie of Iudgment, wherunto he exhorteth vs, is Hovv vve may goe & meete vvith the day of the iudgement. nothing els, but the due examination of our present perilous estate, and the spee­die amendment of our life, to the workes of pietie and holy conuersation: which in deed, is that onlie soueraine remedie, wherof the wise man forwarneth vs, when he saieth; Prouide a medecine before the Eccle. 18. maladie, and examine thy self before iudgment, and so shalt thou finde fauour in the sight of God. Wherunto S. Paul wel agreeth saying; If I. Cor. II. vve vvould iudge our selues, vve should not be iudged. But for that no man entreth into this due iudgemét of himself, his life, state, and actions: here of it cōmeth, that so few dot preuent this dangerous daie; so few prepare themselues; so fewe doe accept of the good counsaile of Christ; so feweare watchful; and so infinite doe fal a sleepe [Page 378] in the ignorance of their owne peril, to their remediles destruction and vnauoi­dable damnation. Our blessed Lord giue vs his holie grace to looke better about vs.

OF THE NATVRE OF SINNE, AND OF THE VNVVORTHINES OF HIM that committeth the same. For iustifyinge the seueritie of gods iudgement setdoune and declared in the chapter going before. CHAPT. VIII.

TO THE ende that no man may iustly com­plaine of the seuere accoumpte, whiche God is to take of vs at the last daye, or of the rigour of his iudgemēt, set doune in the chapter be­fore: it shal not be amisse to cōsider in this place, the cause why God doth shew such seueritie against sinne and sinners; as both by that which hath bene saide may ap­peare [Page 379] that he doth, as also by the whole Godes ha­tred against sinners. course of holy scripture, where in euerie place almost, he denounceth his extreme hatred, wrath, and indignatiō against the same: as where it is sayed of hym, that he Psal. 5. hateth al those that vvorke īiquitie. And againe: that both the vvicked mā and his vvickednes, are Sap. 14. Prou. 15. Iob. 11. Esa. 1. Psal. 13. Psal. 49. Eccle. 15. hateful in his sight. And finallie, that the whole life of sinners, their thoughts, wordes, yea and their good actions also, are abominations vnto him, whiles they liue i sinne. And that (which yet is more) he can not abide nor permit the sinner to praise him, or to name his testament with his mouth, as the Holie Ghost testifieth. and therfore no meruaile if he shew such seueritie against him at the last daye, whom he so extremelie hateth & abhor­reth in this life.

Of which great hatred there might be manie reasons alleaged; as the vndutiful transgressiō & cōtēpt of godes cōmande­mentes; the great ingratitude of a sinner in respect of his diuine benefites, and such other: which might iustifie sufficientlie his indignation and seuere hatred against him. But there is one reason aboue al the rest, which openeth the verie fountaine The reason vvhy God so hateth a sinner. and origine of the matter; and this is, the intollerable iniurie donne vnto almightie God, in euerie mortall sinne that we com­mit: which in deede is so opprobrious & abhominable an iniurie; as no meane worldly potentate could beare the same at his subiectes handes, and much lesse God [Page 380] him self (being the omnipotent Lord of al glorie and Maiestie,) may in reason tol­lerate an outrage so often iterated against him, as is sinne daily committed by the wicked.

For the better vnderstanding of which iniurie, we are to consider, that euerie time we cōmit a mortal sinne, there doth passe thorough our hart & minde (though we marke it not,) a certaine practik discourse of our vnderstandinge, (as there doth also in euerie other electiō,) whereby we lay before vs on the one side, the profit of that sinne which we are tempted to com­mit; that is to saie, the pleasure which al­lureth vs therunto: and on thother parte, the offence of God, which is, the leesinge of his grace and friēdshippe by that sinne, yf we yeeld vnto it. And thus hauinge as it were the balances there before vs, and setting God in one end therof, and in the The iniurie done to God by sinne. other the aforesaide pleasure; we stand in the middest deliberatinge & examininge the waight of both partes; and finallie doe make choise of the pleasure, and reiect almightie God: that is; we chuse rather to loose the fauour of God, together with his grace, and whatsoeuer he is worth besides, then to lacke that pleasure and delectation of sinne. Now then, what can be more opprobrious and horrible then this? what cā be more reprochful to God, then to prefer a most vile pleasure before his infinite Maiestie? is not this farre more intollerable, then the disgrace offred to [Page 381] him by the Iewes, when they made choise of Barrabas the murderer, and reiected Mat. 17. Marc. 15. Iesus their Saueour? surely, how hamous soeuer that sinne of the Iewes were, yet in two poites this doth seeme to exceede the same. First, in that the Iewes knew not whome they refused in their choise, as we doe. Secondly, in that they refused Iesus but once, wheras we refuse him both dai­ly and hourly, whensoeuer in our hartes we giue consent vnto mortal sinne.

And is it meruaile then, that God dea­leth so seuerely & sharplye with sinners in the worlde to come, whoe doe vse hym so opprobriouslie and contemptuouslie in this life? Vndoubtedly the malice of a sin­ner is greate towardes God, and he doth The malice of a sinner tovvardes God. not onlie dishonour hym by contempt of his commaundementes, and by preferring most vyle creatures before hym: but also beareth a secrete hatred & grudge against his maiestie, and woulde (if it lay in his power) offer his endeuour to pull hym out of his seate, or (at the least wise) [...] in his hart, there were no God at all to punish sinne after this present lyfe. Let euerie sinner examine the botome of his conscience in this point, whether he could not be content, there were no im­mortalitie of the sowle, no reckoninge after this life, no iudge, no punishment, no hell; and consequentlye no God at al; to the ende he might the more securelie en­ioye his pleasures?

And because God (who searcheth the [Page 382] harte and reynes) seethe well this most Sap. 1. Rom. 8. Psal. 7. vndutiful & trayterous affectiō towardes hym, lurking within the bowels of sinful men, (how smoth so euer their wordes may be:) here of it commeth, that in the whole course of holie Scripture, he de­nounceth them for his enimies, and pro­fesseth open warre and hostilitie against them. And then suppose yoa, what a piti­ful Rom. 5. Lacob 4. 1. Ioh. 3. case thes vnfortunate men are in, (being but seely wormes and wretches of the earth,) whē they haue so puissant an enimie to fight against them, as doth make the verie heauens to tremble at his looke. And yet that the case is so; heare what himself sayeth, what he threatneth, what he thundreth out against them. After he had by the mouth of Esaye the Prophet re peated many sinnes abhominable in his sight, as the taking of bribes, oppressing Sinners ene­mies to God and God to them. of poore people, and the like: He defieth the doers therof, as his open enymies, saying: This saieth the Lord God of hostes, the stronge Lord of Israel: Beholde I vvi. be reuenged vpon mine enimies, and vvill comfort my self in their destruction. And the Prophet Dauid, as he was a man in most high fauour with God, and made preuie to his secretes aboue many other: so he (more than any other,) doth expresse this seuere meaning of God, & his infinite displeasure against sinners; calling them his enimies, vessels of his wrath, and ordayned to eternal ruine and destruction; and complaineth that the world will not beleeue this [Page 383] point. An vnvvise man (saieth he) vvill not Psal. 90. learne this, neither vvill the foole vnderstand it. And what is this ô holy Prophet? it fo­loweth; That siners and vvorkers of iniquitie (after they haue appeared i the vvorld) doe perishe euerlastingly. And what is the reason of this? he answereth immediatly: because toy enimies (o Lord,) thy enimies (I saie) o Lord, shal perishe, & til they that vvoreke iniquitie shalbe cosumed. Wherby we see, that all sinners be eni­mies to God, and God to them, as also vpō what grounde and reason.

But yet (for the further iustifyinge of godes seueritie,) let vs consider in what measure his hatred is towardes sinne; how great; how far it proceedeth; withi what boundes it is comprehended; or whether it haue any limites or bondes at all, or ra­ther be infinite and without limitation. And to vtter the matter as in trueth it stā ­deth; Godshatred is infinite a­gainst sinne and vvhie. if all the tongues in the world were made one tongue, and all the vnderstan­dinges of all creatures (I meane of Angels and men) were made one vnderstandinge: yet, could nether this tongue expresse, nor this vnderstanding conceiue, the great hatred of gods harte towards euery mor­tall sinne which we commit. And the reason hereof standeth in two pointes. First, for that God by how much more he is better than we are: by so much more he loueth goodnes and hateth synne, than we doe. And for that he is infinitelie good: therfore his loue to goodnes is in­finite, and his hatred to euil, immesurable; [Page 384] and consequentlie, his rewardes to them both, are infinite; the one in hell, with euerlasting miserie; thother in heauen, by eternal felicitie.

Secondlie; we see by experience, that how much more great and worthie the VVhy eue­ry sinne de­serueth in­finite pu­nishment. person is, against whom an offence is cō ­mitted; so much greater is alwayes the of­fence: as for example, the self same blow or iniurie offred to a bond-slaue and to a prince, differeth greatlie in qualitie and in the nature of offence; and consequentlie, deserueth farre different hatred and pu­nishment. And for that euerie mortal sin­ne which we commit, is donne directlie against the person of God hym self, as hath bene declared before, whose digni­tie is infinite: therfore the offence or guilt of euery such sinne is infinite, and conse­quently, deserueth infinite hatred and in­finite punishment at gods handes. Hereof foloweth the reason of diuers thinges both sayed and donne by God in the scri­ptures, and taught by diuines towching the punishments of sinne, which seeme verie straunge vnto the wisedome of the Rom. 8. 1. Cor. 1. world, and in deede to them scarce credi­ble. As first of al; the most dreadful pu­nishment of eternal and irreuocable dam­nation of so manie thowsandes, or rather millions of Angels, that were created to The pu­nishmēt of Angels. glorie with almost infinite perfection, & that for one onlie sinne, but once commit­ted, and that onlye in thought, as diuines are of opinion.

[Page 385] Secondlie, the rigourous punishment Of Adam and Eu of our first parents Adam and Eue, and al their posteritie, for the eatinge of a seely aple; for which fault, besides the chastisinge of the offenders themselues, and al the creatures of the earth for the same, and al their children and ofspring after them, both before our redemption and after; (for albeit we are deliuered frō the guilte of that sinne, yet tēporal puni­shmētes doe remaine vpon vs for the same, as hunger, thirst, cold, sicknes, death, and a thousand other miseries:) besides also the infinite soules, damned for the same be­fore the comming of Christ, by the space offower thousand yeres; as also since, as wel, infidels, which are not baptized, as others: besides al this I say, (which in mās reason maye seeme seuere enough:) gods wrath and iustice could not be sufficiētly satisfied, except his owne onlie sonne had come downe into the worlde, & takē our flesh vpon him, and by his paines & death made satisfaction for the same. And when The value of Christes satisfactiō. he was now come into the world, & had in our flesh subiected him self vnto his fa­thers iustice; albeit the loue his father bare vnto him, were infinite, and euery litle paine that he endured for vs, or at leastwise euery droppe of bloode which he shed for our cause, had ben sufficient for the whole satisfactiō; (for that his fleshe being vnited to his godhead, made euerie such satisfactorie action of his, of infinite value and merite, and consequently of in­finite [Page 386] satisfaction, correspondent to the infinitie of our first parents sinne:) yet to the ende that God might shew the great­nes Esa. 53. of his hatred and iustice against the said sinne and al other; he neuer ceased to adde affliction to affliction, and to heape tormentes vpō the bodie and flesh of this his most deare and blessed sonne, (for by Esaye, he sayeth, that him self was the doer therof;) vntil he had brought him vnto that most rueful plight, that his flesh being all mangled and most lamentably torne in peeces, retained no one droppe of blood within it. He spared him not (I saye) euen then, when he beheld him so­rowful vnto death, and bathed in that agonie of blood and water, when he hard him vtter thos most dolorous and compas­sionable speeches, O my father, if it be possible, let this cuppe passe from me. And after that Mat. 26. Mar. 14. Luc. 22. againe, muche more pitifully vpon the Crosse: O my God, my God, vvhy hast thou for­saken me? Notwithstanding al which cries and lamentatiōs, his most merciful father, (louing him as he did,) would not deliuer him; but for satisfying of his Iustice, laied vpon him stripe vpon stripe, paine vpon paine, torment after torment, vntil he had Mat. 27. Psal. 21. Esa. 53. rendred vp his life & soule into his sayed fathers handes: which is a wounderful & dreadful documēt of godes hatred against sinne.

I might here mention the sinne of Esau The sinne of Esan. in selling his inheritance for a litle meate: of which S. Paule sayeth, he founde no place [Page 387] of repentance after, though he sought the same Gen. 25. & 27. Heb. 12. of Saul. 1. Reg. 15 & 16. 1. Reg. 9. & 15. & 16. vvith teares. Also the sinne of Saule, whos sinne beinge but one, and that onlie of omissiō, in not killinge Agag the kinge of Amalech and his cattel, as he was willed: was notwithstanding vtterlie cast of by God for the same, (though he were his annointed and chosen seruāt before;) & could neuer get remission therof, albeit both he and Samuel, Gods holie prophet, did greatly lament and bewaile, and made intercession in that behalfe.

In like maner might I alleage the exā ­ple of kinge Dauid, whose two sinnes 2. Reg. 12 Psal. 5. 34. 68. 108. 101. 29. 2 Reg. 12 albeit vpon his hartie repentance God forgaue; yet notwithstanding the said re­pentance and sorrow, and all the All thes bedilie pu­nishmentes Bun. leaueth [...], yet vvith stāding they be set doune in scripture. wee­pinge, fastinge, watchinge, lyinge on the grounde, wearinge of sackloth, and other bodilie chasticementes, which this holie prophet recordeth that him self did put in vre: God punished him besides, with maruelous seueritie; as by the death of his dearlie beloued childe, & by manie other continual afflictions, and temporal pu­nishementes, during the rase of his whole life. And al this to shew his hatred against sinne, & thereby to terrifie vs from com­mittinge the same.

Of this also doe proceede, al those harde Hard spee­ches in scripture against sin­ners. and seuere speeches of holie write tou­ching sinners, which comming from the mouth of the Holie Ghost, (and therfore no doubt both true and certaine,) may iustlie yeeld greate cause of feare, to al [Page 388] such as liue in sinful state; As for exam­ple, Eccle. 40. where it is saied: death, bloode, contentiō, edge of svvorde, oppression, hunger, contrition, Psal. 10. and vvhippes; all thes thinges are created for vvicked sinners. And againe: ‘God shal raine Psal. 9. snares of fyre vppon sinners; brimstone vvith tē ­pestuous vvindes, shalbe the portion of their cup.’And yet further ī manie other places, thes most dreadful speeches and comminations Psal. 3. Psal. 9. Psal. 36. Psal. 144. are to be founde:‘God wilbe knowen at the day of iudgement vpon the sinner, who shalbe taken in the workes of his owne handes: manie whippes belong vnto a sinner; let sinners be turned into hell; God shal scatter al sinners, and shal dash ther teeth out of their mouthes; God shal scoffe at a sinner when he seeth his daye of destructiō cōmeth on; the sworde of sinners shall turne into their owne Psal. 57. Psal. 36. Psā. 103. hartes: The armes of sinners shalbe crushed and broken, and they shal wither and dry vp like haye from the face of the earth: de­sire not the glorie and riches of a sinner, Psal. 140. for thou doest not know the suddaine subuersion which shall come vpon hym; Eccle. 2. Psal. 72. Esa. 13. for God hath gyuē him riches, to deceyue him therwith; beholde the daye of our Lord shal come; a cruel daye, and ful of in­dignation, wrath, and furie, to make deso­late the earth, and to crush in peeces her sinners within her. Thē shal the iust man reioice seinge this reuenge, and shal wash Psal. 7. his handes in the blood of sinners.’ Thes loe, my deare brother, and innumerable other such sentēces of scripture, pronoun­ced [Page 389] by the holie spirit of God against sin­ners, maye instruct vs of their pitifull estate, & of the vnspeakable hatred of his diuine Maiestie against thē, so lōg as they persist in their sinful life and cōuersation.

Of all which considerations, the self same holie scriptures, doe gather certaine conclusions greatelie to be obserued. wherof the first and more general is; that sinne bringeth al people to miserie; secondlie Prou. 14. Psal. 10. and more particulerlie: that he vvhich loueth sinne, bateth his ovvn soule; Or as the Angel Raphael vttereth the same ī otherwordes; Tob. 12. they vvhich commit sinne, are enimies to their ovvne soules. Wherfore they laye downe to al men, this general, seuere, & most ne­cessarie commaundement, vpon al the pai­nes before recited. Flee from sinne, as from the face of a snake. And againe: Bevvare thou neuer Eccle. 21. Tob. 4. consent to sinne. For how soeuer the worlde may make litle accounte of this matter, by whome (as the scripture noteth) the sinner is praised in his lustes, and the vvicked man Psal. 9. is blessed for his vvickednes: yet most certaine it is (for that the spirite of God auoucheth it,) that he vvhich committeth sinne, is of the de­uil, 1. Ioh. 3. and therfore is to receyue his portion amonge deuils and damned spirites, at the latter daye.

And is not al this sufficient (most deare brother) to breed in vs a detestation of The obsti­nacie of sin­ners. sinne, with feare and horrour to commit the same? Is not this of force and strength sufficient, to shake the hartes of them that wallowe perpetually in the pudle of sin­ne? [Page 390] and doe commit the same daylie with­out scruple, remorse, or consideration? what desperate obstinacie & obduration is this? Surely we find now by experiēce, that the holye Ghost prophesied ful truelie of thes men, when he sayed; sinners alienated from God, are possessed vvith a surit like a serpent, and like a deafe cocatrise vvhich stoppeth her eares, against the enchaunter. This surie (I saie) is the furie or madnesse of Psal. 17. willfull synners, which stoppe their eares like serpentes, to all the holy enchaunt­mentes that God can vse vnto them, for their conuersiō; that is, to all his internal motions and good inspirations; to all re­morse of their owne consciences; to all threatninges of holie scriptures: to al admonishmentes of gods seruauntes; to al examples of vertuous liuers; to al the pu­nishementes that light vpon the wicked; and to all the other meanes which God can vse for their saluation.

Good Lorde, what man would commit a mortal sinne, for the gayning of ten The losses that come by euerie mortall sinne. thowsande worldes, if he considered the infinite dōmages, hurtes, inconueniences, & mileries, which doe ensue by cōmitting of the same? For first, who soeuer sinneth 1 mortallie, leeseth the grace of God inhe­rent in his soule, which is the greatest gift that can be gyuen to man in this life; & cōsequētlie, he leeseth al those thinges which did accompanie that grace; as are Esa. 11. & Icro. Ibid. the vertues infused, and the seuen giftes of the Holy Ghost, wherby the sowie was [Page 391] beautified in the sight of her spouse, and armed against al assaultes of her ghostlie enimies. Secondlie, he leeseth the fauour 2 of God, and consequentlie, his fatherly protection, care, and prouidēce ouer him; & enforceth hym to be his professed eni­mie. Which, how great a losse it is, we may esteeme in part, by the state of a worldly princes seruant and fauorite, who being in highe grace and credit with his Soue­raine, should by some one great offence lose al his fauour at one instant, and in­curre his mortal hatred and displeasure.

Thirdly, he leeseth all his inheritance, 3 clayme, and title to the kingdome of hea­uē, Rom. 6. which is due onlie by grace, as S. Paul wel noteth; and consequentlie, he depri­ueth hym self of all dignities and commo­dities depending therupon in this life; as are the condition and high priueledge of being the sonne of God; the communion of Sainctes; the protection of holie An­gels, and the like. Fourthlie, he looseth 4 the quiet, ioye, and tranquillitie of a good conscience, and all the fauours, cherish­mentes, consolations, and other comfor­tes, wherwith the holie Ghost is wont to visite the mides of the Iust. Fifthly, he loo­seth 5 the merit and rewarde of his good workes done al his life before, and what­soeuer he doth, or shal doe, while he con­tinueth in that miserable and sinful state. Sixtlie, he maketh hym self guiltie of 6 eternall punishment, and enrolleth his name in the booke of perdition, and con­sequentlie, [Page 392] byndeth hym self to althose miseries and inconueniences, wherunto the reprobate are subiect; that is to saie, to be an inheritour of hel and damnation; to be in the power of the deuill and his An­gels; to be thral to synne and euerie tem­ptation Esa. 13. therof; and his sowle (which was before the temple of the holy ghost, the habitation of the blessed Trinitie, the spouse of God, & place of repose for holy Angels to visit:) now to be a dēne of dra­gons, The leesing of Christ by sinne. a nest of scorpions, a dongeō of de­uilles, a sincke & swine-stie of al filth and abhomination, and hym self a companion of the miserable damned spirites.

Lastlye, he abandoneth Christ, and re­nounceth al the interest and portion he had with hym, treading hym vnder his feete, defiling his most pretious blood, & Crucifying hym againe (as S. Paul auou­cheth,) in that he sinneth agaist him, who died for sinne, and maketh hym self a per­secutour of his redeemer. For which cause Heb. 10. Heb. 6. Rom. 6. the same Apostle pronounceth a most hard and heauie sentence against such men, in thes wordes: If vve synne vvillfullye novv Heb. 10. Rom. 26. after vve haue receyued knovvledge of the trueth: there remaineth no more sacrifice for synnes, but rather a certaine terrible expectation of iud­gement, and rage of fyre, vvhich shall consume the aduersaries. To which S. Peter agreeth, 2. Pet. 2. when he saieth: It had bene better not to haue knovvē the vvay of iustice, thē after such knovv­ledge, to slyde backe agayne from the holye com­maundement vvhich vvas gyuen.

[Page 393] This being so; let sinful worldlinges goe now and solace them selues in their Fonde ex­cuses of sume. vanities and watōnes, as much as they lift. Let them excuse and pleasantlye defend the same, by saing; pryde is but a pointe of gentrye; glouttonie, good fellowship; anger and reuenge, but an effect of cou­rage; lecherye and wantonnes, a trycke of yowth: they shall one daye finde, that these excuses will not be receyued: but ra­ther that al such pleasant deuises & toies, wilbe turned into teares; al such fond concepts into doleful lamentations. They shall proue to their great cost, that God will not be iested with, but that he is the Gal. 6. same God still, and will aske as seuere ac­counte of them, as he hath done of other before; although now it pleasenot them to keepe any accounte at al of their life and actions; but rather to turne all to dis­porte and pleasure, persuading them sel­ues, that how soeuer God hath delt be­fore with other; yet vnto thē he wil par­don al. But this is a mere madnes, and a voluntarie deluding of our selues; for that God hym self by his sacred word, instru­cteth vs to reason after an other sashion. Which I wil here breefly touch, exhor­ting euery prudent Christian seriously to examine the same.

At what time the great Apostle of the Gentiles S. Paul; tooke vpō him to make a Rom. 11. comparison betweene the grieuous sin­nes of his nation the Iewes (for which they were reiected and made reprobate [Page 394] by God,) and thos which Christians doe commit after their Redemption; he fra­med this collection concerning Gods iu­stice due vnto them both, saing: If God spa­red not the naturall boughes; take heede least he spare not thee. And there-vpon he inferreth Rom. 11. this admonition, noli altum sapere, sed time, Be not high minded, but feare. Againe, he rea­soneth thus vpon the olde and the new lawe. ‘He that brake the lawe of Moyses, being conuicted by two or three witnes­ses, Heb. 10. died for the same without commisera­tion or mercye: & how much more gree­uous punishment then doth he deserue, who breaking the law of Christ by wil­full sinne, treadeth the Sonne of God vn­der his feete, polluteth the bloode of the new testament, and reprocheth the holie Ghost?’ In like maner reasoneth S. Peter and S. Iude towching the sinne of Angels and ours. ‘If God spared not the Angels 2. Pet. 2. Ep. Iud. when they sinned, but did thrust them downe to hell, there to be tormented, and to be reserued vnto iudgement with eter­nall chaines vnder darckenes: how much lesse will he spare vs? And agayne; if the Angels which passe vs in power and 2. Pet. 2. strength, be not able to beare gods hor­rible iudgement against them: what shall we doe?’And yet further in an other place, the same Apostle reasoneth thus: ‘if the iust man shal hardlie be saued, where shal the wickedman and sinner appeare?’

By al which examples, we are instru­cted, 1. Pet. 4. how to reason maturely & sincerely [Page 395] in our owne cause. As for example, eche A good maner of reasoninge. man may truly saie thus vnto hym self: if God haue punished so seuerelie one sinne in the Angels, in Adam, and in others be­fore 1 recited: what shall I looke for, which haue committed so manie sinnes against hym? If God haue damned so manie 2 soules for lesser sinnes then mine, are: what will he do to me for mine that are farre greater? If God haue borne longer 3 with me, then he hath done with many other whom he hath cut of, without ge­uing them of repentance: what rea­son is there, that he should beare longer with me? If Dauill and others after their 4 synnes forgyuen, tooke such paines in af­flicting them selues, for satisfaction of the temporal punishement in this life: what punishemēt remaineth for me, either here or in the wold to come, for satisfaction of so manie sinnes cōmitted? If it be true 5 that our Sauvour saith, that the waye is Math. 7. Luc. 13. harde, and the gate narrow wherby men goe into heauen, and that they shal aun­swere for euerie ydle worde before they Mat. 12. enter therein: what shal become of me that doe liue so easie a life, and doe keepe no accounte at al of my deedes, and much lesse of my wordes? If good men in olde time did take such paines for their salua­tion, and yet (as S. Peter saieth) the verie iust were scarcely saued: what a state am I in, which take no paine at al, but doe liue in all kinde of pleasure and worldly con­tentations?

[Page 396] Thes argumētes, consequentes, and con­clusions, are more true (good Christian,) and would proue more profitable vnto vs, if we would excercise our selues ther­in, and therby enter into some cogitation of our owne daungers, and into iust feare of Gods seuere iudgementes, without flat­teringe or deceyuinge our selues. For wāt wherof either onlie or principallie, the most parte of enormous sinnes from time to time are committed, according as holy Dauid most euidentlie declareth, when Tvvo prin cipal causes of deceauīg our selues. hauing shewed and detested the multitude of sinnes which the world committeth; he reduceth (al as it were,) vnto two prin cipal causes. Wherof the first is, that men deceyue them selues and others, by vaine flatterie, in deminishing their sinnes; of whom he saith: they are taken in their ovvne deuises, for that they praise the vvicked man in the lustes & desires of his ovvne minde. The se­cond Psal. 9. is, for that this deceipt and flatterie is referred commōlie by the vitious man, to the driuing of Gods iudgementes out of his memorie, to the end he may sinne with lesse feare and scruple. For so saith the prophet expresselie; The sinner hath exa­sperated God against him, (in that he hath said,) god in the multitude of his vvrath, vvil not re­quire an accounte of my doinges. But what ef­fect ensueth of this? heare the wordes im­mediatelie folowing: he hath not God before his eyes; his vvayes are filthie from time to time. And what is the cause of al this? for that thy iudgementes (o Lord) are remoued from his sight: [Page 397] that is; for that he wil not see, he wil not behold, he wil not heare, he wil not con­sider or beare in mind thy iudgementes, ô Lord, but wil needes flatter, delude, and deceyue hym self. Herof it commeth, that he neuer maketh an end of his filthie life & wicked wayes, but exasperateth thie iustice o Lord, against him, vntil it be ouer late to repent or amende. Thus said this holie Sainte, of wicked sinners: but what of him self? heare his wordes (deare brother) and imprint them in thie memo­rie. I haue kept the vvayes of my Lord, (saith he,) & haue not donne vvickedlie in the sight of Psal 17. my God, for that al his iudgements are before my eyes, and I haue not tast his iustices from me. Be­holde the vertuous life of king Dauid, & The remē ­brance of Gods iudge­mētes, cause of vertue. beholde the cause therof. For that Gods iudgemētes were continuallie before his eyes; therfore was his life pure, and voide of wickednes; or as in other wordes at an other time he expresseth; I vvil cōfesse vnto Psal. 118. the (o Lord) in the direction (or puritie) of my hart, for that I haue learned the iudgementes of thie iustice. And againe in the same place: I haue chosen to vvalke the vvay of truth, for that I doe not forget o Lord thy iudgementes: that is, (as a litle after he expoundeth the same,) for that I doe feare and trēble at thy iudgementes. O most excellent effecte of the feare of Gods iudgementes. No maruaile though it be called the beginning of al wisdom, and the verie dore and entrance to eternal sal­uation: no maruaile if the same holie pro­phet in the verie same psalme doe pray so [Page 398] hartilie; strike through my flesh, vvith thy feare, ò Lord.

S. Paule after he had shewed to the Co­rinthians, Hovv the Apostles did persuad vs to feare. 2. Cor. 5. that we must al be presented before the tribunal of Christ, euerie man to receyue according to his merites; he maketh this conclusiō. VVe knovving ther­fore thes thinges (deare bretheren) doe persuade the feare of our Lord vnto al men. And S. Peter hauing made a longe declaration of the Maiestie of God, and of Christ now rai­ning in heauen; concludeth thus: yf then you cal him father, vvhich doth iudge euerie man ac­cording 1. Pet. 1. to his vvorkes, vvithout exceptiō of per­sons: doe you liue in feare, during the time of this your habitation vpon earth. A necessarie les­son (no doubt) for al men, but especiallie for such, who by reason of their sinful life, doe remaine in displeasure and hatred of almightie God, and hourelie doe stand obnoxious (as I haue shewed) to the se­ueritie of his most dreadful iudgementes. wherinto if once they fal; (especiallie by departure from this life:) the matter re­maineth remediles for all eternitie in­suinge, as God him self hath forwarned vs. Which thing being so: what man of wisdome would not feare? what Christiā that is careful of his owne estate, would eate or drinke, or take his repose with quiet, vntil by hartie repentāce, and other such means of holie Sacramentes, as God hath left for this purpose in his Church, he had discharged his conscience of the burden of sinne, and made an attonement [Page 399] betwene his soule & Saueour? O merciful Lord, how dangerous is his estate, vntil he haue donne it? how manie wayes may he fal into thos heauie handes of his eter­nal iudge, wherof S. Paul conceyued hor­rour in onlie thinking? One litle stone, falling from the house toppe as he passeth by; one slippe of his horse, as he rideth; one assault of an enimie, whē he thinketh not vpon him; one poore ague by a surfect or other distēperature; one suddaine mis­chance of a milliō that may fal vnto him; is able to bereaue him of this life, & to cast him into thos termes of euerlasting cala­mitie, wherehence the whole world shal not be able to deliuer him. And is not this then a matter to be feared? is not this a case to be preuented? O how trulie saith the holie scripture; blessed is the man vvhich alvvaies is fearful, and he that hath a hard hart, Pro. 28. shal fal into perdition.

Our Lord God of his mercie, gyue vs his holie grace, to feare him as we should, and to make such accounte of his iudgementes and iustice, as by threatning the same, he would haue vs to doe, for th' auoiding of sinne. And thē shal not we delaye the time, but shal resolue our selues to serue him, whiles he is content to accept of our ser­uice, and to pardon vs al our offen­ces, if we would once firmelie make this resolution from our hart.

AN OTHER CONSIDE­RATION FOR THE FVR­THER IVSTIFYING OF Gods iudgementes and manife­station of our grieuous offence. Taken from the inestimable Maiestie of him vvhom vve offende, and of the innume­rable benifites vvhich he hath be­stovved vpon vs. CHAPT. IX.

ALBEIT the most parte of Christians through their wic­ked life, arriue not to that state when holy Dauid was, when he sayed to God; thy iudgementes Psal. 118. ô Lord, are pleasant vnto me; (as in deed they are to all those that lyue vertuouslie and haue the testimonie of a good cons­cience:) yet at leastwise, that we maye be inforced to confesse with the same Pro­phet; that, the iudgementes of our Lord are true, Psal. 18. and iustified in them selues: I haue thought ex­pedient, [Page 401] to adde a reason or two in this chapter, wherby it maye appeare, how great our offence is, in sinnīg against God as we doe; and how righteous his iudge­mētes & iustice are agaist vs, for the same.

AND FIRST OF AL IS to be considered, the maiestie of hym, against THE. 1. part. MAIESTIE of God. whom we sinne. For most certaine it is, (as I haue noted before,) that euerie of­fence is so much the greater and more grieuous, by how much greater and more noble the person is, against whom it is done, and the partie offending, more base and vile. And in this respect, almightie God (to terrifie vs from offending hym,) nameth hym self oftentimes with cer­taine great and dreadful titles of maiestie; as to Abraham: I am an omnipotēt Lord. And Gen. 17. Esa. 66. agayne to Esay; heauen is my seate, & the earth is my footestole. And at an other time he cō ­maunded Moyses to beare to the people in his name, this ambassage: harden not your neckes any longer, for that your Lord and God, is Den. 10. the God of godes, and the Lord of lordes, a greate God, both potent and terrible, vvhich accepteth nether person nor bribes.

First then I saye, consider (gentle Chri­stian) of what an infinite maiestie he is, whom thow a poore worme of the earth, hast so often and so contemptuously offended ī this lyfe. We see in this world, that no man dareth to offende openly, or say one worde against the maiestie of a temporal Prince, within his owne domi­nions: But what is the maiestie of all [Page 402] earthly princes put together, if it be com­pared to the thowsand parte of Gods in­comparable & inestimable maiestie, who with one worde made both heauen and earth, and all the creatures therin, and Psal. 148. with halfe a worde could annihilate and destroie the same againe. Whom all the creatures which he made, both Angels, heauens, Starres, and elementes, doe serue at a becke, and dare not once offend; & vn­der vvhom (as holy Iob saieth) doe croucb and trēble, euē they that beare vp & susteine the vvorld. ‘Onlie a sinner is he, which embol­deneth Iob. 9. hym self against this maiestie, and feareth not to offēd the same, whom (See Cvr l. Catech. 3. Chrv. hom. 26. in Gen. Clem lib. 8. cap. 16. as the holye Catholique Church doth pro­fesse day lie, in her preface to the blessed sacrifice,) the Angels do praise, the domi­nations doe adore, the powers do trem­ble, and the highest heauens, together with Cherubins and Seraphins, thrones, and al other multitudes of celestial spi­rites, doe continually praise with hymnes of glorie.’

Remember then (deare Christian bro­ther,) that euerie tyme thou doest com­mit a capital sinne, thou gyuest (as it were) a blowe in the face to this great God of eternal maiestie, whos mansiō (as S. Paul describeth,) is in a light inaccessible such as no man in this vvorld can endure to be­hold. Wherof S. Iohn th' euangelist gyueth 1. Tim. 6. good testimonie, by his owne experiēce; who notwithstādig he were an Apostle, and most dearly beloued of his God and [Page 403] maister; yet when Christ appeared vnto him after his Resurrection, with certaine sparcles only of his dreadful gloric, vtte­ring Certaine de clar. iliōs of Gods Maie­stie. words of most sweet consolation vnto hym; he was for al that, so astonied & oppressed with feare, that he fel doune starke dead, as him self confesseth, vntil the same his Lord and Maister, vouchsafed to raise him vp againe. The like trial of this inexplicable maiestie, had Moyses the familiar friend and trustie seruant of God; who after many conferences, desiring once in his life to see him, whos wordes he had so often heard; made humble peti­tion for the same. But God answered, that no man might see hym and lyue. Yet not­withstanding, to satisfie his request, and to shew him in parte what a terrible and maiesticall God he was: he promised Moyses, that he should see some part of Exod. 33. his glorie; how beit he added, that it was needfull he shoulde hyde him self in the hole of a rocke, & be couered with Gods owne handes for his defence, whiles he, (or rather his Angel as diuines doe inter­prete,) did passe by in glorie. Who being once past; God remoued his hande, and suffered Moyses to behold the hynder par­tes only of the Angel, which was not­withstanding most terrible and dreadful.

The same maiestie was reuealed also in some part to Daniel, who sawe God (as he writeth) placed vpon a most glorious Dan. 7. throne; his apparell vvas as vvhit as snovv; bis beare lyke vnto fyne vvoolle; bis throne vvas of [Page 404] a flame of fyre, and his chariottes vvere a burning furnace; a svvift flud of fyre ranne from his face; thousand thousandes did serue him, and ten thou­sand hundred thousands did assist him: Al this and much more is recorded in holy scrip­ture, to admonishe vs therby, what a won­derful prince of maiestie he is, whom a synner doth offend. Which thing that iust and holie man Iob considering; and hea­ring but one word vttered by his friend which in his conceit did sauour of pre­sumption Iob. 26. against this God; burst forth into thes wordes. ‘Whom wilt thou teach (my friend?) wilt thou teach him which hath inspired breath into man? which hath stretched out the heauens ouer the vacuitie of this world, and hath hanged vp the earth in the aire without staie? before whom hel is wide-open and ther is no couering from perdition? The pillers of heauen doe tremble and quake at his only fight. And if we should heare but the lest whispering of his speech; who should be able to abide the thunder of his maiesties greatnes?’

Imagine then novv (my louing bro­ther, A contem­plation of Gods Ma­iestie.) after althes testimonies, that thou seest before thy face, this great and migh­tie king sitting in his chaire of maiestie, with chariottes of fire, vnspeakable light, and infinite millions of Angels aboute him. Imagine further, (which also is most trew,) that thou seest al the creatures in the world stand in his presence, and trem­bling at his maiestie, and most carefullie [Page 405] attending to doe that, for which he crea­ted them: as the heauens to moue aboute: the Sunne, moone, and Starres to geeue lighte and influence: the earthe to bringe foorth her sustenance: and euerie other creature diligently to labour for perfour­mance of the dutie assigned vnto him. Imagine besides, that thou seest al these creatures (how bigge or litle soeuer they be,) to hange and depende onlie of the power and vertue of this God; and therby only to stande, moue, and consist; and that there passeth from God to eche creature in the world, yea to euerie parte that hath motion or being in the same, some beame of his vertue: euen as from the sunne, we see infinite beames passe into the ayer. Consider (I say) that no one parte of anie creature in the world, (as the fishe in the sea, the grasse on the ground, the leaues of Hovv al creatures depende vpon the Creator. trees, or the partes of man vpon the face of the earth,) can grow, moue, or consist, without some litle streame of vertue and power deriued to it continuallie from God. So that, thou must imagine God to stand as a most glorious and resplendent Sunne, in the midle or center of al thinges created, and from him, to passe foorth in­numerable beames and streames of vertue, to all the creatures that are either in hea­uen, earth, the ayer, or waters, & to euerie parte and particle of the same; and that vpon thes beames of his deuine vertue, all creatures doe depend; in so much, as if he should stop or diuert but any one of them [Page 406] al; it would destroye and annihilate pre­sentlie some creature or other.

This I saye, if thou shalt consider tou­ching the maiestie of God, and the infinite dread that all creatures haue of him, ex­cept onlie a sinner, (for the deuils also doe feare him as S. Iames affirmeth:) thou Iac. 2. wilt not meruaile at the seuere iudgemēt appointed for his offence. For sure I am, that very shame of the world maketh vs to haue more regarde in offending the poorest friende we haue in this life, thē a wicked man hath in offending almightie God: which is an intollerable contempt of so great a maiestie; & such a cōtempt in deed as God him self doth account to pro ceede of plaine infidelitie. For wheras at a certaine time, he had declared his owne Lacke of feare pro­ceedeth of Infidelitie. great power, by the mouth of Ieremie, & threatened manie punishmentes to the Ie­wes for their wickednes: thei werenothig moued therwith. Wherupō he cōmaūded hī to returne againe vnto thē, & to say thes wordes. Heare thou folishe people, vvhich hast no hart; you that haue eyes and see not, eares and Ierem. 5. heare not. And vvil ye not then feare me? vvil ye not trēble in my sight? vvhich haue sett the sandes for a bounde vnto the sea, and haue gyuen him an eternal precept vvhich he shal not breake? &c. This people hath a faithles hart &c. Which is as much as if he had said, that this lacke of feare in the Iewes, proceeded of their defect of faith. For if they had belieued him to be in deed so powerful, terrible, & ful of maiestie, as the holie scripture set­teth [Page 407] him doune; they would haue concey­ued more feare in offending him.

BVT NOVV IF VVE adioine to THE. 2. part. GODs be­nefites. this contemplation of maiestie, an other consideration of his benefites bestowed vpon vs: our default wil grow to be far greater. For that to iniury him, who hath done vs good; is a thinge moste detestable euen in nature itself. And there was neuer yet so fearce a harte, no not among brute beastes, but that it might be wonne with curtesie and benefites. But much more among reasonable creatures doth benefi­cence preuaile, especiallie if it come from great personages, whose loue and friend­shippe (declared vnto vs but in small gyf­tes) doth greatlie by nde the hartes of the receyuers to loue them againe.

Consider then (deare Christian) the infinite good turnes and benefites which thou hast receyued at the handes of this great God, therby to winne the to his loue, and that thou shouldest leaue of to offende and iniurie him. And albeit no tongue created either of man or Angel, can expresse the one halfe of thes giftes which thow hast receyued from him, or the value therof, or the great loue and hartie good will, wherwith he be­stowed the same vpon the: yet for some better helping of thy memorie, & stirring vp thine affection to be grateful; I will repeate certaine generall and principall pointes therof, wherunto the rest may be easilie referred.

[Page 408] First then, cal to minde, that he hath be­stowed THE. 1. benefite. Or creatiō. vpō thee the benefite of thy crea­tion; wherby he made the of nothing to the likenes of hymself, and appointed the to so noble an ende, as is to serue him in this life, and to raigne with him in the life to come; hauing furnished thee besi­des, for the better attainmēt therof, with the vse, seruice, and subiection of al his other creatures. The greatnes of which benefite may partly be conceyued, if thou doe imagine thy self to lacke but any one parte of thy bodie, as a leg­ge, an arme, an eye, or the like: and that one should freelie euen of pure good wil and loue, supplie thy want, and gyue the same vnto thee. Or if thou wantest but any one of thy senses, as that thou were deafe, blynde, or dumme; and some man should restore thy sight, hea­ring, or fpeech vnto thee: howe wouldest thou esteeme of this benefite? how much wouldest thow professe thy self behol­dig vnto him for the same? And if the gyft of one of these partes onlie, would seeme vnto thee so singuler a benefite: how greatly oughtest thou to esteeme the free gyfte of so manie partes toge­ther?

Adde now hereunto, (as I haue sayde) that he hath created the, to thee lyknes of no other thing, but of him self; to no other ende, but to be his honorable ser­uante in this world, and his compartener in kynglie glorie, for all eternitie to [Page 409] come: and this he hath done to the, being only a peece of earth or claye before. Now ymagine then, of what sea of loue al this proceeded. But yet adde further, how he hath created all this magnificēt world for the, and all the creatures therof to serue thee in this busines: the heauens to gouerne the and to geeue the light: the earth, ayer, and water, to minister most in­finite varietie of creatures for thy behoof and sustenance: and of al thes hath made the Lord & maister, to vse them for thine auaile and benefite in his seruice. Which giftes being so manifold and magnificent as they are; I appeale to thine owne cōs­cience (good Christian brother) how in­tollerable an ingratitude it is, so greatly to dishonour & iniurie the giuer, as to ap­plie thes giftes to his offence, which he bestowed vpon the for his seruice.

Next after this ensueth the benefite of thy redemption, much more excellent and The 2. be­nefite. OF redem­ption. bountiful thē the former; the effect wher­of is, that wheras thou hadst lost al those former giftes and benefites, and hadst made thy self guiltie by sinne of eternal punishmēt and damnation, (wherunto the Angels were now deliuered for their sinne committed before:) God chose to redeeme the, and not the Angels; and for satisfying of thine enormous fault, vouch­safed to deliuer his owne only soone to the most opprobrious death of the Cros­se. O Lord God, what hart can possibly conceyue the greatnes of this benefite? [Page 410] Suppose with thy self (gentle Christian) for better vnderstanding of this benefite; that thou being a poore and abiect per­son, vnder the dominion of some great & mightie Emperour, hadst with some of his principal Peres, committed grieuous cri­mes A supposi­tion for ex­pressing the great­nes of this benefite. against his Emperial Maiestie; thou oftentimes, and they but once; and being both by law conuicted, and redie to suster Iustice for the same; so singulerly should the Emperours fauour extend it self in thy behalf, as deliuerig ouer thos other great princes to execution for their demerites; he conceyued a desire to saue and pardon thee. And finding no other conuenient meanes in respect of his Iustice, how to doe the same, should vpon his only sonne and heire of al his Empire, laie the paines, shame, and tormēts of death due vnto thy trespasses. Tel me now, if being so abiect and cōtemptible a creature, thou shouldst receyue so great a grace of a mightie Em­perour, who had for fewer offences, euen in thy sight, put to death greate and glo­rious princes; (as God did thos princi­pal Angels:) how wonderfully wouldest thou thincke thy self bound and beholden vnto him for the same? But if further, this sonne and heire of this noble Monarch, refusing to speake one word for thos great princes, should not only accept willingly this dishonour and punishment laid vpon him by his father, for thy sake, but also should offer himself therunto, and craue most instantly, that he might by his death [Page 411] make satisfaction for thine offences, and not only this, but also to deriue vnto thee the participatiō of his inheritāce, making thee of a bondslaue, heire apparant to so Puissant an Emperour, & coheire to him self: could thy hart possibly conceyue so great a benefite? were it possible, that thy powers of bodie & soule should not dis­solue in the cogitation of so inspeakable a grace? would not thy bowels burst in sunder with the vehemencie of loue to­wards such a benefactour? Or can any mā of reason, euer imagine, that thou woul­dest willingly for a thousand worlds, of­fend any more so gratious a Lord? And yet is this benefite of thy redemption (deare brother,) by infinite degrees surpassing both this and al other temporal graces, that mans wit can imagine, in al and euery circumstance that before hath bene mentioned.

In the third place doe come to be con­sidered, THE. 3. and 4. be­nefites. OF voca­tion and iu­stification. two other benefites named voca­tion and Iustification. The first wherof is, that, wherby God of his infinite depth of mercies, hath called vs from infidelitie, to the state of Christians; and therby made vs partakers of this our redemption last mentioned, which infidels are not. For al­beit he payed the ransome for al in gene­ral; yet hath he not imparted the benefite therof to al, but to such onlie as best it pleased his diuine goodnes to bestow it vpon. After which grace of vocation, and Rom. 8. 1. Cor. 1. our acceptance therof, insued immediatlie [Page 412] our iustification wherby we were not onlie set sree from al our sinnes commit­ted before, and from al paine and punishe­ment dew to the same: but also our soules were beutified and enriched by the infu­sion of his holie grace inherent, accompa­nied Rom. 5. 1. Cor. 13. Esa. 11. with the vertues theological, as faith, hope, and charitie; & with the most pretious giftes of the Holie Ghost: and by this grace, wee were made iust and righ­teous in the sight of God, and entitled to the most blessed inheritance of the king­dome of heauen, the worthines of which gift, no tongue of man or Angels can ex­presse.

After these doe ensue a greate number of benefites together, apperteining pro­perly The 5. be­nefite. OF the Sa­cramentes. to such as are made the children and true frendes of God; euery one wherof in it self is of most infinite price and valew. Among which are in the first place to be nombred, the holie Sacraments of Christs Church, left vnto vs for our comfort and preseruation after we be entred into the bosome therof. They being nothing els in deed, but certaine sacred cōduits to cō ­uaie vnto vs the holie grace of God: espe­cially thos two which appertaine to al men in general, I meane, the holy Sacra­ments of penance and of the blessed bodie and blood of our Sauyour: wherof the first, is to purge our sowles from sin so The vse of Sacramētes often as she falleth; the seconde, to feede and comforte the same after she is purged. The first, is as a bathe made of Christs [Page 413] owne pretious bloode, to washe and clēse our woundes therein: the secōde as a most comfortable and riche garment, to couer our soule after she is washed. In the first, Christ hath left with his spouse the Church, al his authoritie, which he hath in heauē or earth to remit sinnes: in the se­cōd, he hath left him self, & his owne flesh and bloode, to be a pretious foode, wher­with to seede and cherish our soule after her sinnes be remitted.

Besides al thes; ther yet remaineth an other benefite which we cal the benefite The 6. be­nefite. Of preser­uation and inspiratiō. of Preseruation; wherby God hath kept and preserued vs from infinite dangers, wherūto many others before vs haue fal­len, and into which our selues had fallen in like maner, if gods-holie hande had not stayed vs: as from heresie and infide­litie, and manie other greeuous sinnes: but especially, frō death & damnation, which longe a goe by our wickednes, we deser­ued to haue bene executed vpon vs. Wherunto maie be annexed also the most singuler benefites of godlie inspirations and admonitions, wherby God hath of­ten both knocked inwardlie at the dore Apoc 3. of our conscience, and warned vs out­wardly by so many wayes and meanes, as are good bookes, good sermons, good ex­hortations, good companie, good exāple of others, & a thousand other most merci­ful means besides, which at diuers times he hath vsed and doth vse, therby to gaine vs and our sowles vnto his eternal king­dome, [Page 414] by stirring vs vp to abandon vitious life, and to betake ourselues to his holy and swete seruice.

Al which most rare and excellent be­nefites, being measured either according Circumstā ­ces of bene­fites. to their inestimable value in themselues, or according to the loue of that harte from which they do proceede, or els if we respect the maiestie of the giuer, or meanesse of the receyuer: ought in reason to moue vs most vehementlie to gra­titude towardes so bountiful a bene­factour. And this gratitude shoulde be, to resolue ourselues at length, to serue him vnsaynedlie, & to preferre his fauour be­fore al wordlie or mortal respectes whatsoeuer. Or if we can not obtaine so much of ourselues; yet at leastwise not to offende him anie more by our sinnes and wickednes.

There is not so fearse or cruell a nature in the world, (as I noted before,) but is mollisied, allured, and wōne by benefites: And stories do make reporte of straunge A Flian. in [...]. animal. examples in this kinde, euen among brute beastes; as of the gratitude of lyons, dog­ges, and other like, towardes their mai­sters and benefactours. Onliean obstinate sinner is he, among all the sauuage creatu­res that are, whom neither benefites can moue, nor curtisies can mollifie, nor pro­mises can allure, nor gyftes can gayne, to the faithfull seruice of God his Lord and maister.

The greatest synner that is in the [Page 415] world, if he geeue his seruante but twen­tie nobles a yeare, or his tennant some The intolle­rable ingra titude of a sinner to­vvards God litle farme to liue vpon; if they for this, should not serue him at a becke; he crieth out of their ingratitude. But if they should further malitiouslie seeke to offende him, and to ioyne in amitie with his professed enimie: how intollerable a matter would this seeme in his conceit? And yet him self, dealing much more ingratfullie and iniuriouslie with almightie God, estee­math it a matter of smal consideration, & easely pardonable. He dealeth (I saie) far more ingratfullie with God; for that he hath receyued a thousand folde for one, in respect of all the benefites that one mor­tal man can gyue vnto an other. Seing, that of God, he hath receyued al in al; the bread which he eateth, the grounde he treadeth, the light he beholdeth, the aire he enioyeth, and finally, what so euer he possesseth ether within or without his bodie: as also the minde with al her spiri­tual endumētes, wherof eche one is more worth, then ten thousand bodies.

Of this extreme ingratitude and iniurie, God himself is enforced to complaine in Godes com­plainte of sinners. diuers places of holy scripture, as where he saith; they repaied me euil for good. And yet much more vehemētlie in an other place, Psal. 34. he calleth the heauens to witnes of this iniquitie crving out: Obstupescite caeli super Iere. 20. hoc. O you heauens be you astonished at this. As if he should saye by a figuratiue kinde of speech; goe out of your wittes [Page 416] you heauens with meruaile, at this incre­dibile iniquitie of man to wardes me; For so he expoundeth the whole matter more Esa. 1. at large in an other place: Audite cals & auribus percipe terra, &c. Harken oye hea­uens, and thow earth bende hither thine eares: I haue nourished vp children and haue exalted them, and now they doe cō ­temne me.’ What a lamentable complaint is this of almightie God against most vile and base wormes of the earth? But yet he amplifieth this iniquitie more vehemētly by certaine examples and comparisons. The oxe (saieth he) knovveth his ovvner, & the asse knovveth the manger of his Lord and maister: but yet my people knovveth not me. VVoe be to this synful nation, to this people loden vvith [...], to this noughtie seede, to vvicked children. What complaint can be more vehement then this? what threatning can be more dreadfull then this woe, comming from the mouth of him which may punishe vs at his pleasure?

Wherfore (deare brother) if thou haue The cōclu­sion. grace, cease to be vngrateful to God any longer: cease to offend him which hath by so many waies preuented the with bene­fites: cease to render euil for good, hatred for loue, contempt for his father lie affe­ction towardes the. He hath done for the Isa. 4. al that he can: he hath geeuen the al that thow art: yea and (in a certaine maner) al that he is worth hym self: and meaneth besides, to make the partaker of al his glorie in the world to come, and requi­reth [Page 417] no more for al this at thy handes, but loue and gratitude. O my louing brother why wilt thou not yelde vnto him this his desire? why wilt thou not doe as much to him, as thou woldest haue an other mā to doe to the, for lesse then the ten thou­sand parte of thes benefites which thow hast receyued? for I dare bouldly saye, if thow haddest gyuen but an almes to a poore man at thy dore, thou wooldest thike him bounde to loue the for it, al beit besids this, ther were nothing in the that greatly might deserue his loue. But thy Lord and maister (setting a parte al his giftes bestowed vpon the) hath infinite causes to drawe thy loue vnto him, that is to saye, all the causes which any thing in the world hath in it to purchase loue, Causes of loue in God besides his benefites. and infinite more besydes. For, if all the perfections of thinges created both in heauen and in earth, that may procure loue, were ioyned together in one: as al their beautie, al their vertue, al their wis­dome, al their sweetnes, al their nobilitie, al their goodnes, and other like excellen­cies: yet thy Lord & Sauy our whom thou contemnest, surpasseth all thes, and that by infinite and infinite degrees: for that he is not onlie all thes thinges together: but morouer he is verie beautie it self, vertue it self, wisedome it self, sweetenes it self, nobilitie it self, goodnes it self, and the verie fountaine and welspring, from which by litles peeces and parcels al thes thinges are deriued vnto his creatures.

[Page 418] Be a shamed then (good Christian) of this thine ingratitude, to so great, so good, and so bountifull a Lord: and resolue thy self for the tyme to come, to amende thy course of life, and former behauiour towardes him. Say at lēgth with the Pro­phet, (hauing considered thine owne in­gratitude:) O Lord pardon me mine offences, for they are great in thy sight. I know there is nothing (ô Lord) which doth so much Psal. 24. displease the, or drie vp the fountaine of thy mercie, or so byndeth thy handes frō A brief Cō fession and Petition to God. doinge good, as doth ingratitude in the receyuers of thy benefites. Wherin hi­therto I haue exceeded al others. But I haue done it (ò Lord) in mine ignorance, not considering thy infinite giftes be­stowed vpon me, or what account thou wouldest demaunde againe of the same. But now, seing thou hast vouchsafed to make me woorthie of this special grace also, wherby to see & knowe mine owne errour & default: I hope hereafter by dire­ction of the same grace, to shew my self a better childe towardes the. O my God, I am vāquished at lēgth with cōsideratiō of thy loue: and how can I haue the harte to offend thee hereafter, seing thou hast pre­uented me so manie wayes with benefites, euen when I demaunded not the same? Can I haue hādes euermore to sinne agaīst thee, which hast gyuen vp thine owne handes, to be nayled on the crosse for me? No, no, it is to great an iniurie agaīst thee (ô Lord,) and woe worth me that haue [Page 419] dōneit so oftē heretofore. But by thy holy assistāce, I trust not to returne to such ini­quitie for the time to come, to which I beseeche the for thy mercie sake, from thy holie throne of heauen, to saye.

Amen.

OF WHAT OPINION WE SHAL BE CONCERNING THE MATTERS AFOR­said, at the time of our death. As also vvhat our state shalbe at that passage, and hovv different our iudgement from that it is novv. CHAPT. X.

THE holy scriptures doe teach vs, and experience maketh it plaine, that du­ring the time of this The indu­ration of some hartes. life, the commodi­ties, prefermentes, & pleasures of the world, doe possesse so stronglie the hartes of manie men, and doe hold them chained with so forcible enchauntmentes, being forsaken also vpon their iust desertes of [Page 420] the grace of God: that saye and threaten what a man can, and bring against then all the whole scripture, euen from the be­gynning of Genesis to the end of the A­pocalips, (as in decde it is al against synne and synners:) yet wil it preuaile nothing with them, being in that lamentable case, as either they beleeue not, or esteeme not, what so euer is saide to that purpose, against their setled lyfe and resolution to the contrarie. Of this we haue infinite ex­amples in scripture: as of Sodome and Go­morra, Gen. 19. with the cities ther about, which would not heare the warninges that good I ot gaue vnto thē. Of Pharao also and his court, whom al that euer Moyses Exo. 6. 7. 8. 9. could doe, ether by signes or sayinges, moued nothing at al. Of Iudas in like ma­ner, who by no sweet meanes or sharpe Math. 26. threatninges, vsed to him by his maister, could be brought to change his wicked resolution. But especially the holy Pro­phets sent by God, from tyme to tyme, to dissuade the people from their noughtie life, and consequentlie to deliuer them from the plagues that hanged ouer them; doe gyue abundant testimonie of this mat­ter, complaining cuerie where, of the hardnes of synners hartes, that wold not be moued with al the exhortations, prea­chings, promisses, allurementes, exclama­tions, threatnings, and thunderinges, that they could vse. The Prophet Zacharie shal testifie for all in this behalf; who faieth of the people of Israel a litle before their [Page 421] destruction. This sayeth the Lord of hostes, iudge iustije: wherunto presentlie he addeth: And they vvould not attende, but turning their backes Zach. 7. vvent avvaye, and stopped their eares, to the ende they might not neare; and they did obdurate their hartes as an adamant stone, to the end they might not heare the lavve, and the vvordes. vvhich God did send in his spirite, by the handes of the former Prophetes, vvherby godes great indignatiō vvas stirred vp against them.

This then is, and alwayes hath bene, the maner of dissolute worldlinges and re­probare people; to harden their hartes as an adamant stone, against any thing that can be told them for the amendement of their liues, and for the sauing of their soules. Whiles they are in health and pro­speritie, they wil not know God, as in an Esa. 1. other place himself complaineth. But yet as the Prophet saieth: God wil haue his daye, with thes men also, when he wilbe knowen. And this is, cognoscetur Dominus Psal. 9. iudicia saciēs. God wilbe knowen when he begineth to doe iudgmēt, which is, at the daye of their death; being in deed the next dore to their iudgement, according as S. Paul testifieth, saying; it is appointed for al Heb. 9. men once to die, and after that ensevveth iudge­ment.

This (I saye) is the day of God, most ter­rible, Isa. 2. 13. 34. 37. 61. sorowful, and ful of tribulation, to the wicked; wherin God wilbe knowen to be a righteous God, and to restore to euerie 2. Cor. 5. man according as he hath donne vvhile he liued: or as the Prophet describeth it; he vvilbe Psal. 75. [Page 422] knovven then to be a terrible God, and such as one, as taketh avvaye the spirite of princes; a ter­rible God to the kinges of the earth. At this daye, as there wilbe a great change in al The greate change of thinges at the daye of death. other thinges, mirth being turned into sorow, laughinges into weepinges, plea­sures into paines, stoutnes into feare, pride into despaire, and the like: so espe­ciallie wil there be a strange alteration in the iudgement and opinion of men: for that the wisedome of God, wherof I haue spoken in the former chapters, and which (as the scripture saieth) is accounted folie by the vvise of this vvorld; wil then appeare in 1. Cor. 2. her likenes, and, (as it is in verie deede,) wilbe confessed by her greatest enimies, to be the onlie true wisedome; and al carnal wisdome of worldlinges, to be Rom. 8. 1. Cor. 1. meere folie, as God calleth it.

This the holie scripture setteth downe clerelie, when it describeth the verie spee­ches and lamentations of the wise men of this world, at the last daye, concerning the state of holy men whom they despi­sed in this life. ‘We senseles mē, did esteeme their life to be mere madnes, & their end to be dishonorable: but looke how they are now acconnted among the children Sap. 8. of God, and their portion is with the sainctes. We haue erred from the waye of trueth, and the light of righteousnes, hath not shined before vs, nether hath the sunne of vnderstanding appeared vnto vs. We haue weried out our selues, in the waye of iniquitie and perdition, and we [Page 423] haue walked craggie pathes: but the waye of our Lord we haue not knowen.’ Hytherto are the wordes of holie scrip­ture: The lamē ­tation of vvicked mē in the ende. wherby we may perceyue, what great change and alteration of iudge­ment there wilbe at the last daye, from that which men haue now: what conses­sing of folie, what acknowledging of er­rour, what hartie sorow for laboure lost, what fruiteles repentance for hauing runne a-wrie. O that men would ponder and consider attentiuely these thinges now. VVe haue vveried out our selues (saye thes miserable men) in the vvayes of iniqnitie and perdition, and vve haue vvalked craggie pa­thes. What a description is this of lamen­table wordlinges, who beate their brai­nes dailie, and wearie out them selues, in the pursute of vanitie and chasse of this worlde, for which they suffer notwith­standing more paine often times, then doe the iust in purchasing of heauen? And when they arriue at the last daie, to the gate of death, weried and worne out with trouble and toyle; they finde that al their labour is lost, all their vexation taken in vaine. For that the litle pelfe which they haue scraped together in this world, & for which they haue struggled and drudged so extremely; wil auaile thē nothing at that instant, but rather en­crease exceedingly the burden of their af­flictions. Three cau­ses of great miserie in death. Which afflictions shalbe so ma­nifold, greeuous, and intollerable in the wicked: as no mind created may perfectly [Page 424] conceyue the same, but he that seeleth them; albeit in part some smal coniecture may be made therof by thes three general pointes ensuing, wherunto the rest may be referred.

THE FIRST IS, THE excessiue paines which commonlie mē suffer in the THE. 1. matter. OF miserie in death. separation of their soules and bodies; which hauing liued so longe time toge­ther, vnited as two deare frendes in loue and pleasure, are now most loth to parte, were it not that violently they are enfor­ced therunto. This paine may partlie be conceyued; if we would driue out life, but from the least parte of our bodie, as for example, out of our litle fingar, like as sur­geans are wont to doe, when they wil mortifie any one place, to make it breake. What intolerable paine doth a man suf­fer, before this member be dead? what ra­ging greefe doth he abyde? If then the mortifying of one litle parte onlie, doe so much afflict vs: Imagine, what the vio­lent mortifying of al the partes together wil doe. For we see that first the soule is driuen by death to leaue the extreamest partes, as the toes, feete, and fingers: then the legges and armes, and so consequently one parte dieth after an other, vntill life be restrained onlie to the harte, which holdeth out longest as the principal part; but yet finallie must be also constrained to render it self, though with neuer so much paine and resistance. Which paine how great and stronge it is, may appeare [Page 425] by the breaking in peeces of the verie stringes and holdes wherwith it was en­uironed, through the excessiue vehemen­cie of this deadlie torment.

Neuertheles, before it come to this pointe of yelding; no man can expresse the cruel conflict that is betwixt death and her, and what distresses she abideth in the time of her agonie. Imagine that a A simili­tude expres­singe the paines of death. prince possessed a goodlie citie in al peace, wealth, and pleasure, and greatlie frinded of al his neighbours round about him, who promised to assiste him in al his needes and affairs; & that vpon the sudden, his mortal enimie should come and be­siege this citie, and taking one holde af­ter an other; one wall after another; one castell after an other; should driue this prince onlie to a litle tower and besiege him therin, al his other holdes being beaten doune, and his men slaine in his sight: what feare, anguishe, and miserie woold this afflicted prīnce be in? How of­ten would he looke out at the windowes & loope holes of his tower, to see whe­ther his friendes and neighboures would come to help him or no? And if he saw them all to abandone him, and his cruel enemie euen readie to breake in vpon him; would he not (trow you) be in a most pitiful plight? Euen so then fareth it with a poore soule, at the hower of death. The bodie wherin she raigned like a iolie princesse in al pleasure, whiles it flori­shed; is now battered and ouerthrowen [Page 426] by her enimie, which is death: the armes, legges, and other partes wherewith she was fortified as with walles and wardes during time of health, are now surprised and beaten to the grounde, and she is dri­uen onlie to the harte, as to the last and extremest refuge, wherein also she is most fearcelie assayled in such sorte, as she can not possiblie hold out longe. Her dearest friendes who soothed her in time of pro­speritie, and promised assistance, as youth, agilitie, strength, courage, diet, phisicke, and other humane helpes; doe now vtter­lie abandone her: the enimie wil not be pacified or make any league at al, but night and daye assaulteth this Turret wherein she is retired, and which now beginneth to shake and shiuer in pecees, in such sort, as she expecteth hourelie when her enimie in most raging & dread­ful maner, wil burst in vpon her.

What thinke you is now the state of this afflicted soule? It is no maruaile if a wise man become a foole, or a stoute worldling most abiect in this instant of extremitie, as we often see they doe, in such sorte, that they can dispose of no­thing well either towardes God or the world at this houre. The cause wherof is, the extremitie of paines oppressing their mindes, (as S. Austē wel noteth) ge­uing An admo­nition of S. Augustin. vs ther withal a most excellent fore-warning of this daie, if men were so hap­pie as to follow it. ‘When you shalbe in your last sicknes deare bretheren (sayeth [Page 427] he) ò how harde and painful a thing wil Ser. 48. ad Frat. in Ercmo. it be, for you to repent of your faultes committed, and of good deedes omitted? and why is this? but onlie, for that all the intentiō of your minde wil runne thither, where al the force of your paine is? Manie impedimentes shall let men at that day. As the paine of the bodie, the feare of death, the sight of children, for the which their fathers shall often times thinke thē selues damned; the weeping of the wife, the flatterie of the world, the temptation of the deuil, the dissimulation of phisi­tions for lacre sake, and the like. And be­leeue thou (ò man) which readest this, that thou shalt quickelie proue al this trew vpon thy self; and therfore I beseech the, that thou wilt doe penance before thou come vnto this last daie. Dispose of thy house, and make thy testament whyle thou arte whole, while thou art wise, while thou art thine owne man: for if thou tarie vntil the last daie, thou shalt be led whether thou wouldest not.’Hi­therto are S. Austens words.

THE SECONDE THING which THE. 2. matter. OF miserie in death. shal make death most terrible and grie­uous to a worldlie man; is the sudaine parting, (and that for euer and euer) from al the thinges which he loued most dea­rely in this life; as from his riches, pos­sessiōs, honours, offices, faire buildinges, goodlie apparel, and rich iewels: as also from wife and children kindred and frin­des, and al other earthly delightes and [Page 428] commodities, wherewith in this life he thought him self a most happie man. And now to be plucked from thes vpon the sudaine, without hope euer to see or vse them againe, and that often times when he least doubteth any such matter: must needes be a pointe of extreme griefe; es­peciallie, if he be in the state which holie Iob describeth when he saith. The vvicked Iob. 21. man dieth vvhen he is strōge and vvhole of bodie, riche & happie; vvhile his entrals are ful of fatte, and vvhiles his bones are vvel vvatred vvith marooe. O Iesu, what a griping griefe, how intollerable a torment vvil this be? O how true an oracle is that of God which saieth: O mors, quam amara est memo­ria tua, homini pacem habenti in substantiis suid?Eccle. 41. O death, how bitter is thy memorie vnto a man, that hath peace and rest in his sub­stance’ & riches? as who would say, there is no greater bitternes or greefe in the world to such a man, then to remember or only thinke on death; but much more to taste and trie it himself, yea and that im­mediately, when it shalbe saied vnto him, as Christ reporteth it was vnto that great wealthie man in the Ghospel, which had his barnes ful, and was nowe come to the highest top of his felicitie; Thou soole, euen Luc. 12. this night thy soule shalbe taken from the; and then vvho shal enioy al that vvhich thou so pain­fully hast scraped together?

O deare Christiā, it is impossible for any The sorovv of leavinge al. mortal tōgue to expresse the doleful state of a worldlie man in this instāt of death, [Page 429] when nothing of al that he hath gathered together with so much labour and toile, and wherin he was wont to repose so great affiance, wil now auaile him any longer, but rather afflict his soule with the memorie therof, cōsidering that now he must leaue al to others, & goe him self to gyue accounte for the gathering and vsing of the same, (and that perhaps to his eternal damnation,) whiles in the meane time other companions in the world, doe liue merilie and pleasantlie vpon that he hath gotten; litle remembringe and lesse caring for him, that perhaps lieth bur­ning in vnquēcheable fire for thos riches vnrighteously heaped and left vnto them. This vndoubtedly is a most woful and la­mentable point, which shal bring manie a man, to greate sorow and anguishe of harte at the last daye; when al earthlie ioyes must be left, al pleasures and com­modities foreuer abandoned. O what a doleful daye of partinge wil this be? what wilt thou saie, (my frende) at this daye, when al thy glorie, al thy welth, al thy pompe, is come to an ende? What art thou the better now to haue liued in credit with the world? in fauour of princes, ex­alted of men; feared, reuerenced, and ho­noured of al sortes; seing at this instant al thy iolitie, pride, and pompe is at an ende, al thy former felicitie is arriued now to her euerlasting periode?

BVT NOVV BESIDES al this; THE. 3. matter. there is a third thing which more then al [Page 430] the rest, wil make this daie of death to be OF miserie in death. most dreadful & miserable vnto a world­lie man: to witt, the consideration what shall become of him, both in bodie and soule. And as for his bodie; it wilbe no smal horrour, to thinke vpon that saying of holie scripture; the end of the vvicked [...] Eccle. 10. fleshe, shalbe fire and vermine, and his inheritāce shalbe serpentes, beastes, and vvormes; that is, it must be throwen out to be the foode of vermine. That bodie, I meane, which was before so delicatelie entertained, with al varietie of meates, softe pillowes, and beddes of doune; so trimlie set forth in apparel, and other ornamentes; where­vpon the winde might not be su fred to blow, nor the sunne to shine: that bodie (I saye) of whose beautie there was so much pride taken, and wherby so great vanitie and sinne was dayly commited; that bodie, which in this world was ac­customed to all pampering and nicenes, & might abide no austeritie, or discipline at al: must now be forlorne and aban­doned of all men, and left only for apraie to be deuoured of wormes. Now the time is come, when thos wordes of God must be fulfilled which he vttered by his Pro­phet against delicate people: In that day God shal pul of al ornamentes, chaines, braselets, Esa. 3. ringes, Iuels, pomanders &c. and then shal be, in steed of svveet sauours, stinch; ī place of rich gird­les, [...] for could heare, [...]. &c. Al which bodilie disgrace and miserie, albeit it can not but breed much horrour in the [Page] hart of him that lieth a dying: yet is this nothing in respect of the dreadful cogita­tions, Cogitations of him that lieth in dying. which he shal haue touching his soule: to wit, what shal become therof; whether it shal goe after her departure out of the bodie? And then considering that she must appeare before the iudge­ment seate of almightie God, and there receyue sentence, either of vnspeakeable glorie, or insupportable paines: he falleth to consider more in particuler, the daun­ger therof, by comparing godes iustice and threates (set doune in holy write against sinners,) with his owne life: he begineth to examine the witues, (which is his conscience,) and findeth the same readie to laye infinite accusations against him, when he commeth to the place of iustice.

And now (deare Christian brother) beginneth in deed the inexplicable mise­rie of this poore afflicted man; now doe al the multitude of his sinnes present thē selues before his face; now doth he in deed see verified that sentence of sacred Scripture; In fine hominis denudatio operum. Eccle. 11. ‘The workes of euery man are laid open at his ende.’Now doe master before his eyes all Gods threats against wicked li­uers; nether is ther any one seuere saying of holy writ pronounced against sinners, which now doth not offer it self vnto his minde. Our ghostlie enimie which in this life laboured to keepe al these thinges frō our cōsideration, therby the more easely, [Page 432] to entertaine vs in sinne and pleasure; wil now laye al and more, before our face, amplifying and vrging euerie point to the vttermost, and alleaging our conscien­ce in euery thing for his witnes. Which when the poore soule in dying can not deny; she must needs therby most vehe­mently be terrefied: and so we see it daily come to passe, euen in many most vertuous and holie men: whereof S. Ierome repor­teth Ierom in vita Hila­rionis abba. a verie memorable example of bles­sed S. Hilarion, whos soule being greatly frighted with thes confiderations, and exceeding loth to depart from his bodie; at length after long conflict, he tooke hart & said, goe forth my soule, goe forth, vvhy art thou so sore affraid; thou hast serued Christ al­most threescore & ten yeres, & art thou novv so fearful to depart? To like effect also the holie martyr of god S. Cyprian telleth of aver­tuous Cyp. lib. de mortalit. and godlie bishoppe, which dyinge in his time, was greatlie terrified at the houre of death, notwithstanding he had liued verie vettuouslie; vntil at length Christ Note here that Bun. re­iecteth not only thes au­thorities of S. Cypriā & Possidonius, but also she vvhole dis­courses fo­lovving of S. Augu­stine, S. Gre­gorie, and of venerable Bede: for that they talke of apparitions. appearing vnto him in the forme of a goodlie yong man, rebuked him in thes wordes; you are affraid to suffer, and out of this life you vvil not goe; vvhat thē shal I doe vnto you? which wordes and example S. Austen did often vse to recount talking of this matter, as his scholar Possidonius re­cordeth in his life.

Now then, if good men and saintes are so a fearde at this passage, yea such as had serued God with al puritie of life, & per­fect [Page 433] zeale for the space of three score and ten yeres together: what shal they be, which scarcely haue serued him in deed one daye in al their liues, but rather haue spent their yeres in sinne and vanitie of this world? shal not these mē (trow you) be in greate extremitie at this passage? Surely S. Augustine describeth the same verie effectuously in one of his sermons, and (according to his manner) doth gyue a notable exhortation vpon the same. If you wil know dearlie beloued (saith he) Ser. 50. ad fiatres in Eremo, and cap. 1. de vanitate se­culi. with how greate feare & paine the soule of man doth passe from the bodie: marke diligently what I shal saie vnto you. ‘The Angels at that hower, shal come to take the soule and bring her before the iudge­ment seate of a most dreadful iudge: and then she callinge to minde her wicked deedes shal beginne exceedingly to feare and tremble, and would gladlie flie and leaue her deedes behinde her, seekinge to entreate the Angels, and to request but one hower space of delaye. But that wil not be graunted: and her euil workes cry­ing out al together shal speake against her, and save, we wil not staye behinde or parte from the, thou hast done vs, and we are thy workes, and therfore we wil fol­low the whether soeuer thou goest, yea euen vnto the seate of iudgement. This (loe) is the state of a sinners soule, which partinge from his bodie with most hor­rible feare, goeth onwardes to iudgemēt loden with sinnes, and with infinite con­fusion. [Page 434] Contrariwise the iust mans soule goeth out of his bodie with greate ioye and comforte, the good Angels accom­paininge her, with exultation. Wherefore (brethren) seinge these thinges are so; doe you feare this terrible hower of death now, to the ende you maye not feare when you come vnto it. Foresee it now, that then you maye be secure.’ Thus farre S. Augustine.

And for that this holie father & lear­ned Doctour in Christes Church, maketh mentiō in this place of good and euil An­gels which are redie at the houre of death Appearing of Augels at the houre of death. to receyue the soules of such as depart out of this life: it shal not be from our purpose to note, that oftentimes God doth permit the apparitions of Angels both good and euil, as also of other saintes, to some men lyinge on their death beddes, for a tast ether of comforte or sorow, touchinge that which shal ensue in the world to come. And this is also one singuler priui­ledge, among other belonging to this pas­sage. And concerning the iust, I haue she­wed before an example out of S. Cyprian and S. Augustine touching one to whome Christ appeared at the hower of his death. And S. Lib. 4. ca. 11. 12. 13. 14. &c. Gregorie the greate, hath diuers like narratiōs to that purpose i the fourth booke of his dialogues. As for ex­ample sake, of one Vrsinus, to whom the blessed Apostles S. Peter and S. Paule ap­peared. But as concerning euil spirites and wicked Angels, which shewed thē selues [Page 435] vnto diuers sinners at the houre of death, and denounced vnto them their eternal damnation, and horrible tormentes ap­pointed in hel: we haue manie and most terrible exāples, recorded in many graue & aunciēt writers. As among other, that recorded by S. Gregorie of one Chriso­rius Lib. 4. diad. cap. 38. a greate riche man, but as ful of sinne as of wealth, to whome lying on his death-bed, the infernal fiendes in most vglie māner appeared, shewing how now he was deliuered into their power, and therfore would neuer depart from him vntil he dying, left his soule vnto thē to be caried to eternal tormentes.

The like examples doth venerable Bede recount to haue happened in our countrie Lib. 5. hist. Angl. c. 14. about his time. And among other, of a cer­taine wicked Courtier in great fauour with king Coenride, to whom lying in the panges of death, and being now a litle recouered; both the good and euil Angels appeared visibly; the one laying before him a verie smal booke of his good deedes, the other a greate huge volume of his enormous crimes. Which after they had caused him to reade; by the permissiō of the good Angels, they seazed vpō him, assignig also vnto him the certaine houre of his departure, according as both him selfe confessed openlie, to al that came to visit him; and as by his horrible & despe­rate death ensuinge (at the very hower by them appointed,) he manifestlie con­firmed. The like storie recordeth he in the [Page 436] chapter folowing, of one whom he knew Beda lib. 5. cap. 15. him self; and (as both he, S. Gregorie, and S. Cyprian also doe note,) al these & such other visions, were permitted for our sake which doe yet liue, and maye take com­moditie by the same; and not for their good that died, whom they nothing at al auailed.

Which being so deare Christian bro­ther; The appli­cation of al that haith bene said. that is, this passage of death being so terrible, so daungerous, & yet so ineui­table as it is: seing so manie mē doe perish and are ouer whelmed daylie in passing ouer this perilous gulfe, as both holie scriptures and auncient fathers doe testi­fie by examples & recordes vnto vs: what man of discretion would not learne to be wise by other mens dangers? or what rea­sonable creature would not take heede & looke aboute him, being warned so ma­nifestlie and apparantlie, of his owne pe­ril? if thou be a Christian, and doest be­lieue in deede the thinges which Christiā faith doth teach the: thē doest thou know an I most certainlic belieue also, that of what state, age, strength, dignitie, or con­dition, so euer thou be now; yet must: hy self (which now in health & mirth doest real this point, and thinkest the same litle appertainig vnto thee) one of these daies, (and that perhaps very shortlie after the readinge hereof,) come to proue al these thinge, in thine owne person: that is; thou must with sorow and griefe been­forced to thy bed, and there after al strag­gliges [Page 437] with the dartes of death, thou must yelde thy bodie which thou louest now so dearly, to be the baite of wormes, and thy soule to the trial of iustice, for her doinges in this life.

IMAGINE THEN (my friend,) euē thou I saye, which art so fresh and froe­licke A VERY profita­ble consi­deration. VPON he premisses. at this instant, that the ten, twentie, or two yeres, (or perhaps two monethes or daies,) which thou hast yet to liue, were now come to an ende, and that thou were euen at this present, stretched out vpon a bed; wearied and worne with do­lour and paine; thy carnal frindes about the weepinge and howlinge and desiring thie goodes; the phisitions departed with their fees, as hauing gyuen the ouer; and thou lyinge there alone mute and dumme in most pitiful agonie, expecting from moment to momēt, the last stroke of death to be gyuen vnto the. Tel me in this instāt, what would al the pleasures and commo­dities of the whole earth auaile the? what comfort or ease would it be vnto the now to haue bene of honour in this world; to haue gathered wealth and purchassed much; to haue borne office, and enioyed the princes fauour; to haue left thy chil­dren and kinred in aboundance; to haue trodden donne thine enimies; to haue stir­red much, and borne greate swaye in this life? what pleasure (I saye) or benefite would it be to the, to haue bene beautiful, to haue bene gallant in apparel, goodlie in personage, glittering in golde? would [Page 438] not al thes thinges rather afflict then pro­fit thee at this instant?

No doubt but now, thou shouldest wel see & throughlie perceaue the vanitie of The cogi­tation and speeche of the soule at the last day. Prou. 11. thes trifles; thou shouldest proue true the saying of the wise man; non proderūt diuitie in die vltionis, riches wil profit nothing in the day of Gods reuēge. That most excel­lent demaunde of holie Iob, would often­times offer it self vnto thie remembrāce; Quid ad cum pertinet de domo sua, post se? ‘What Iob. 21. hath a man to doe with his house, fami­lie, or kinred after he is gone;’ what good, what comfort shal he take therby? VVho Iere. 15. vvil haue mercie of the, (saith God to Ierusa­lem by his prophet Ieremie,) or vvho vvil be sorovvful for the at this day? vvho vvil goe to intreate for thie peace? Thou bast abandoned me, saith God; thou hast gone from me; and novv vvil I strech out my hand, and kil the. And yet further by an other prophet he demādeth of wicked men; VVhat vvil ye doe in this day Esa. 10. of my visitation, and of calamitie that commeth vpō you? to vvhose helpe vvil ye flie? vvher vvil ye leaue your glorie? And in an other place expressīg yet more effectuallie their state and miserie, he saith: they shal crie to the Iere. 11. Godes vvhom they serued in this life, and they shal not saue them, in this time of affliction: that is, they shal crie & cal vpon their frēdes, acquaintance, wealth, honour, and other idoles which they serued more then God in this life, but they shal receaue no help or comfort from them.

O deare Christian brother, what diffe­rence [Page 439] of cogitatiōs, what chāge of iudg­mentes, what discouerie of vanities wil this day bring? Thy harte within thee wil now beginne to reason; Loe, heere is an A lamen­table com­plaint. end now of al my delites and worldlie prosperities. Al my ioyes, al my pleasures, al my mirth, al my pastimes, are now fini­shed. Where are my friendes that were wont to laugh with me; my seruātes wont to attende vpon me; my children wont to disporte the time with me? where are al my coches and horses, wherwith I was wont to make so goodlie a shew; the cap­pes and knees of people accustomed to honour me; the troupes of suters follo­wing me? where are al my daliances and trickes of loue; al my pleasant musicke; al my gorgeous buildinges; al my costlie feastes and banquettinges? And aboue al other, where are now my deare & sweete frindes, who seemed they would neuer haue forsaken me? But (alas) al are now gone, & haue left me heere alone to aun­swere the reckoninge for al, and none of them wil doe so much as to goe with me to iudgement, or to speake one worde in my behalfe. Woe worthe me, that I had not foreseene this daye rather, and so haue made better prouision for the same. It is now to late; and I feare me, I haue pur­chased eternal damnation, for a litle plea­sure; and haue lost vnspeakable glorie, for a fleetinge vanitie. O how happie, and twise fortunate are they, whoe so liue as they may not be a fearde of this daye? I [Page 440] now see the difference betwixt the endes of good and euil, & maruaile not though the scriptures saye of the one, the death of sainctes are precious: And of the other, the death of sinners is miserable: O that I had li­ued so vertuouslie, as some other haue donne; or as I had oftē inspirations from God to doe; or that I had done the good deedes I might haue donne: how sweete and comfortable woold they be to me now in this my last, & extremest distresse?

To thes cogitations and ruful speeches (my louing brother,) shal thie soule be The Con­clusion. driuen at this last howr of her depar­ture, if now thou preuent it not, by wis­dome and diligence. For which preuen­tion, To meās to preuent the terrour of death. the spirit of God hath reueiled vnto vs two principal means: the first wherof, is, the diligent excercise of good workes in this life, wherunto Christ him self as­sureth 1 a good and happie passage at our death. For so he pronounced plainlie by a voice from heauen, to his deare Apostle S. Iohn: they shal novv rest & repose from their labours; for that their good deedes doe follovv Apoc. 14. them. And holie Dauid the prophet, ex­presseth the maner of a good mans depar­ture more in particuler, saying: Dominus opem seret illi super lectum doloris cius. God Psal. 4. shal help and assist him vpon the bed of his sorow; that is, vpon the bed of his last departure, which to a worldlie man, may rightlie be called the bed of sorow, for that it is nothing els, but a collection and heape of al sorowes together.

[Page 441] The second meane wherby to preuent this sorowful day, is, continuallie to pre­meditate 2 and hold in mind the coming therof, as holie Iob did, who saith of him self: al the dayes of my life, doe I attend the com­ming Iob. 14. of my change or departure from this vvorld. Out of which attētion & premeditation, doe proceede sundrie most excellent ef­fectes and frutes, for preuention of al euil that may insue at that day. The first wher­of, 1 is, to stand in continual awe and feare of death, as holie Dauid did, who confes­sed of him self, that the feare of death vvas Psal. 54. fallen vpon him. Out of which feare doth proceed a second effect of great weight in 2 mans life, named heedfulnes or sollicitude, which the blessed mā Iob had by his for­named meditation of death; for so he saith of him self, that, by consideration, he vvas Iob. 23. made sollicitous vvith scare, and therupon he addeth further, that he doubted al his Iob. 9. vvorkes. In which case S. Paul also signi­fieth him self to be, when he exhorted al men to be careful to doe good vvorkee vvhiles 1. Cor. 7. they haue time; and, for that this time is but short; so to vse this present vvorld, as though they vsed it not. The third effect that followeth by the meditation of death, is the vnderstan­ding 3 of our owne basenes and vilitie, wherunto S. Paul exhorted the Corin­thians when he said vnto them. Except you be reprobates you knovv your selues. For he 1. Cor. 7. that thinketh often vpon the state of a dead man, shal easilie confesse with saint Iacob. 4. Esa. 4. Iames, that our life is a vapor; and with Esay; [Page 442] that al the glorie of man, is but as a flovver of the field. And wil finallie say to him self with the wise man. Quid superbit terra & Eccle. 10. cinis? Whie doth earth and dust ware proude, and take so much vpon it?

Thes are three most excellent effectes 4 that doe insue, by frequent meditation and consideration of death. But besides thes, ther followeth also a fowerth, which is the casting from vs of al superfluous worl­dlie cares, which are commonlie in them that consider not ther ende, according as the wise man warneth vs when he saith; God hath giuen (or permitted) to the sinner, Eccle. 2. affliction and superfluous care to scrape and ga­ther together, to leaue it to such as to God it shal best please. And out of this effect, is ingēdred 5 by litle and litle and by degrees, an other more high and excellent thing, called the cōtempt of creatures for the loue of their Greator, wherunto S. Paul was arriued when he wrote thos finie wordes; I doe Phil. 8. esteeme al thinges as dunge, for the gaining of 6 Christ. And from this proceedeth an other (which is the sixt and last,) called the cō ­tempt, or rather the loue and desire of death. Which S. Paul also had attained vnto, when he said of him self. I doe desire to be dissalued, and to be vvith Christ. And the holie prophet Dauid, who said in the be­ginning (as you haue heard,) that the feare of death vvas fallen vpon him: came at length to Psal. 41. crie out; my soule doth thirst after God, that is the liuelie vvel-spring; vvhen shal I come, and appeare before the face of God? So that from [Page 443] the feare of death, (which is the first ef­fect that springeth of the remembrance The highest felicitie of Saintes in this life. & meditation therof,) he was come now to the loue and most earnest desire of the same, which is the highest degree of com­fort, and the most supreme felicitie that saintes doe arriue vnto in this life.

Endeuour then (my deare Christiā bro­ther) by frequent and diligent premedi­tation The con­clusiō of al. of this passage, to attaine to this fe­licitie, or at least wise, to some parte or degree therof. Feare death now, that thou maist not feare it then. For as God by his holie spirite assureth the; he that feareth Eccle. 1. novv, shal be in securitie at the last, in the day of his departure. Nay, as holie Iob further des­cribeth Iob. 5. the matter; ‘he shal laugh at that day whē other mē are in spoile & famine; he shal not feare the beastes of the earth; his legue shal be with the stones of Na­tions; that is, he shal be no more moued or terrified with comming of death, then stones are; he shal see, that his taber­nacle shal be that day in peace; he shal en­ter into his sepulcher, in al aboundance, as a mow of corne in the haruest time: that is; he shal departe hence in aboundance of al grace and merit at the houre of his death, which to a vertuous man, is the day of haruest, wherin he shal reape the re­wardes of his good deedes which he hath sowen in this life.’Thus describeth Iob the blessed departure of a godlie man, cōcluding his whole discourse with this admonition and exhortatiue clause; [Page 444] Ecce, hoc ita est; quod auditum, mente pertracta ‘Behold, this thing is as I haue said; which Iob. 5. thou hauing vnderstoode, passe it not ouer sleightlie, but reuolue and dis­cusse the same diligentlie in thie minde.’

OF THE GREATE AND SEVERE PAINES AND PV­NISHMENTES APPOIN­ted by God for sinners after this life. As also of tvvo kindes and sortes: herof, the one temporal for them that shal be sa­ued, th' other eternal for the damned. CHAPT. XI.

AMONGST all the meanes which God vseth towardes the children of men in this life, to moue them to the resolu­tion, wherof I en­treate; the strōgest & most forcible is, the consideratiō of punishmentes prepared by him for rebel­lious [Page 445] sinners and transgressours of his cō ­maundemēts. Wherfore he vseth this mo­tiue often, as may appeare by al the pro­phetes, who doe almost nothing els but threaten plagues and destruction to of­fendours. And this meane hath oftentimes The force of feare. preuailed more then anie other that could be vsed, by reason of the natural loue which we beare towardes our selues; and consequentlie the natural feare which we haue of our owne danger. So we reade Ion. 5. that nothing could moue the Niniuites so much as the fortelling them of their im­minent Math. 3. destruction. And S. Iohn Baptist, albeit he came in a simple and contempti­ble maner: yet preaching vnto the people the terrour of vengeance to come, and that the Marc. 1. axe vvas novv put vnto the tree, to cut dovvne for the fire al such as repented not: he moued Luc. 3. the verie publicanes & souldiers to feare, (being otherwise people of verie harde metal) in such sort, as they came vnto him vpon this terrible embassage, and asked what they should doe to auoide these pu­nishmentes?

For which cause, hauing now cōsidered in the former chapters of death, and of godes seuere iudgment ensuing thervpon, (wherin euerie man hath to receyue ac­cording to his workes in this life:) it fol­loweth 2. Cor. 5. that we consider also of the pu­nishmentes which are appointed for thē that shalbe founde faultie ī that accounte, hereby at leastwise (if no other conside­ration wil serue,) to induce Christians to [Page 446] this resolution of seruinge God. For as I haue noted before, if euerie man haue na­turallie a loue of him self and desire to cō ­serue his owne ease: then should he also haue feare of peril, wherby he is to fal into miserie & calamitie. This expresseth S. Bernard verie excellently according to In serm. de primordii. his wonte. ‘O man (saieth he) if thou haue left al shame, (which appertaineth to so noble a creature as thou art:) if thou feele no sorow (as carnal men doe not:) yet loose not feare also which is founde eué in brute and sauage beastes. We vse to loade an asse and to werie him out with laboure, and he careth not, because he is an asse: but if thou wouldest thrust him into fire, or flinge him into a ditch, he would auoide it as much as he coulde, for that he loueth life and feared death. Feare thou then, and be not more insensible thā a beast: Feare death, feare iudgment, feare Prou. 9. hel. This feare is called the beginning of wisdome, and not shame or sorow; for that the spirite of feare is more potent to resist sinne, then the spirite of shame or sorow. Wherfore it is saide, remember the Eccle. 7. ende and thou shalt neuer sinne; that is, remem­ber the final punishmentes appointed for sinne, after this life.’Thus far S. Ber­narde.

First therfore to speake in general of Three con­iectures of shegreatnes of Gods pu­nishmētes. the punishmentes reserued for the life to come: if the scriptures did not declare in particular their greatnes vnto vs; yet are there manie reasons to persuade vs that [Page 447] they are most seuere, grieuous, and intolle­rable. Psal. 71. Deut. 10. For first, as God is a God in al his workes, that is to saye, greate, wounder­ful, and terrible: so especiallie he sheweth the same in his punishmentes: being called Psal. 4. Psal. 93. for that cause in holy scripture, Deus iusti­tiae, God of iustice: as also, Deus vltionum, God of reuenge. Wherfore seing al his other workes, are maiestical and excee­ding 1. His Maie­stie. our capacities: we may likewise ga­ther that his hande in punishment, must be also most wonderful. God himself tea­cheth vs to reason in this maner, when he Iere. 5. sayeth: And vvil ye not then feare me? and vvil ye not tremble before my face? vvho haue set the sande, for limites to the sea; and haue giuen the vvaters a commaundemēt neuer to passe the same; no not then, vvhen they are most troubled, and the vvaues therof most outragious? As who would say; if I be wonderful and doe passe your imagination, in these woorkes of the sea and other of this world, which you be­hould dailie: then haue yee iust cause to feare me, considering that my punishmētes are like to be correspondent to the great­nes of my other actions. 2. Gods mer­cie.

An other coniecture of the great and seuere iustice of God in punishing, may be the consideration of his infinite and vn­speakable mercie; which, as it is the verie nature it self of God, and consequently, without ende or measure, as his godhead Psal. 84. is: so is also his iustice. And these two, are the two armes (as it were) of his diuine Maiestie, embracing & kyssing one th' o­ther, [Page 448] as the scripture saieth. And therfore as in a man of this world, if we had the measure of one arme, we might easely cō ­iecture the length of the other: so behol­ding daily the wounderful examples of godes infinite mercie towardes them that doe repent: we may therby conceyue the seueritie of his Iustice towards such as he reserueth to punishment in the life to come, and whom for that cause, he calleth in holy writ, Vasa furoris; that is, vessels, Esa. 13. Psal. 7. of furie, wheron to exercise the rage of his dreadful and most terrible indigna­tion. Gods pa­tience.

A third consideration to induce vs to the vnderstāding of the greatnes of Gods punishmentes in general; may be his mar­uailous patience, and long suffering of sin­ners in this life. As that (for example) he permitteth diuers mē from sinne to sinne, from day to day, from yeare to yeare, frō age to age, to liue continually in the con­tempt of his Maiestie, and transgression of his commaundementes; refusing al per­suasions, allurementes, good inspirations, or other meanes of grace and fauor, that his merciful goodnes can deuise to offer for their amendment. And what man in the world could suffer this? or what mor­tal hart were able by inestimable sufferāce & for bearing in this life, to shew such pa­tience? but now if al this should not be requited with seueritie of punishment, in the worlde to come: it might seeme to be against the law of iustice and equitie, and [Page 449] so one arme in God to be longer then the other. S. Paule toucheth this reason in his epistle to the Romans, where he saith: duest thou not knovv that the benignitie of God is Rom. 2. vsed to bring thee to repentance? and thou by thy bard and impenitent hart, doest heape vp vengeace vnto thy self, in the day of vvrath and appearan­ce of Gods iust iudgementes, vvhich shal restore to euerie mā according to his vvorkes. In which sentence S. Paul vseth the phrase of hea­ping wrath or vēgeāce, to signifie therby, that like as the couetous man, doth laie vp money daily to make his heape en­crease; so the irrepentant sinner doth heape sinne vpon sinne: and God on the contrary side, heapeth vengeance to vengeance, vntil his measure be ful, to re­store in the ende, measure against measure, as Esa. 27. the prophet saith, and to paye vs home ac­cording to the multitude of our ovvne abhomina­tions. Iere. 16. Gen. 15.

This was the meaning of almightie God when he said to Abraham that the ini­quities of the Amorrheans vvere not yet com­plet: As also in the reuelations vnto S. Ionn Euangelist, when he vsed this conclusion of that booke: He that doth euil, let him doe yet more euil: and he that lieth in filth, let him yet Apoc. 22. become more filthie: for beholde I come quicklie, and my revvard is vvith me, to render to euerie man according to his deedes. By which wordes God signifieth, that his forbearance and tolleration with sinners in this life, is an argument of his greater seueritie in the life to come: which the prophet Dauid [Page 450] doth insinuate in like maner, when tal­king Psal. 36. of a careles sinner, he saieth: ‘God shal deride him for that he seeth before hand, that his daie vvil come.’ Which daie (no doubt) is to be vnderstoode the daye of account and punishmēt after this life; for so doth God more at large declare him self in another place, in these wordes. ‘And thou sonne of Ezech. 7. man, this saieth thy Lord God: the end is come; now (I save) the end is come vpon the. And I wil shew on the my furie, and wil iudge the according to thy waies. I wil laye against the al thine abominatiōs, & myn eye shal not spare the, nether wil I take anie mercie vpon the, but I wil laie thine owae waies vpon the, & thou shalt know that I am the Lord. Behold affic­tion commeth on, the end is come, the end (I saie) is come: it hath watched against the, and beholde it is come: destruction is now come vpon the: the time is come; the daie of slaughter is at hand. Shortlie wil I power out my wrath vpon the, and I wil fil my furic in the, and I wil iadge the ac­cording to thy waies, and I wil lay al thy wickednes vpō the: myn eye shal not pitie the, nor wil I take any compassion vpon the, but I wil lay thy waies vpon the, and thy abhominations in the middest of the, and thou shalt know that I am the Lord that striketh.’ Hitherto is the speech of almightie God deliuered by the mouth of his holie Prophete.

SEING THEN we now vnderstand OF hel. in general; that the punishmentes of God [Page 451] in the life to come are most certaine to be OF paines in parti­culer. AND of tvvo sortes, therof. Heb. 10. greate and seuere, to al such as fal into thē (for which cause S. Paul affirmeth, that it is a horrible thing to fal into the handes of the liuing God:) Let vs consider some what in particuler, what maner of paines and pu­nishmentes they shalbe. For better con­ceyuing wherof, it is to be noted, that there be two sortes of sinners in this worlde: the one, which die in the guilt of mortal sinne, and in the disfauour and ha­tred of almightie God, of whom it is said, Apoc. 21. the portion of vvicked men, shalbe in the lake bur­ning vvith fire and brimstone, vvhich is called the second death. The other, which haue the guilt of their sinne pardoned by their repentance in this life, but yet haue not made that temporal satisfaction to gods iustice, nor are so thoroughlie purged in this world, as they may passe to heauen without punishmēt: and of these it is wri­ten; 1. Cor. 3. Aug. in Psal. 37. They shal suffer detrimēt but yet they shalbe saued as by fire. Vpon which wordes of S. Paul, the holie father S. Austen writeth thus. Because S. Paul sayeth that these mē The paines of Purga­torie & the greatnes therof. shalbe saued by fire; therfore this fire is cōtemned. But surely, though they shalbe saued by it: yet is this fire more grieuous then whatsoeuer a man can suffer in this life: albeit you know how greate and in­tollerable thinges men haue or maie suf­fer. The same S. Augustine in an other pla­ce Hom. 16. ex 50. homi. expoundeth yet further the words of the said Apostle i this maner; ‘They which haue donne thinges worthie of tempo­ral [Page 452] punishment (of whom the Apostle saieth, they shalbe saued by fire,) must passe 1. Co. 3. through a firie riuer, and most horrible shallowes of burning flames, signified by the prophet, when he saith; and a fludd of Dan. 7. fire vvent before him; and looke how much matter there is in their sinnes; so longe must they sticke in passing through; how much the fault requireth, so much shal the punishment of this fire reuenge. And be­cause the word of God doth compare the soule of a sinner, to a pot of brasse, saying: put the pot emptie vpon the coles, vntil al the rust be melted of: therfore in this fire al idle speeches, al filthie cogitations, al light sinnes, shal boile out and consume, which by a shorte waie might haue bene sepera­ted from the soule in this life, by almes & teares.’ Hitherto S. Augustine.

And the same holie father in an other place hath these wordes. ‘If a sinner by his August. de vera & falsa poenitentia. cap. 18. conuersion escape death, and obtaine life, yet for al that, I can not promise him, that he shal escape al paine or punishment. For he that differred the fruites of repentance vntil the next life, must be perfited in pur­gatorie fire: & this fire (I tel you) though it be not euerlasting, yet is it passing gre­uous; for it doth far exceede al paines that mā can suffer in this life. Neuer was there founde out yet so greate a paine in flesh, as that is, though martyrs haue abidden straunge tormentes, and many wicked mē haue suffered exceeding greate punish­mentes.’

[Page 453] To like effect doth S. Gregorie write Gregor. in Psal. tertis. paenitent. Psal. 27. of the seueritie of this punishment, ex­pounding those wordes of Dauid. O Lord rebuke me not in thy surie, nor correct me in thy vvrath. ‘This is as if he said (saith S. Grego­rie) I know that after this life, some must be clensed by purging fire. And other must receyue sentēce of eternal damnation. But because I esteeme that purgīg fire (though it be transitorie) to be more intolerable, then al the tribulation which in this life may be suffered: therfore I doe not onlie desire, not to be rebuked in the furie of eternal damnatiō; but also I greatlie feare to be purged in the wrath of transitorie correction.’ Thus far S. Gregorie. And I might adde a hundred like other sayinges out Note that Bun. turneth of here, thes and al other fathers that speake of Purgatorie. He is not of their opiniō. of the auncient holie fathers, tou­ching the extreame seueritie of this pur­ging fire after death, and of the greate feare which they had therof. But that this alredy spoken may be sufficient to gyue admonishment to Catholique men that agree with thes Saints in beleef of this doctrine, more carefully to looke vnto them selues, for auoiding the rigour of this fier especially by thes two princi­pal meanes of Almes-deedes and teares, wherunto S. Augustine most earnestly ex­horteth August. in Psal. 37. them in the place before allea­ged; wher also he frameth this notable collection. ‘We see (sayeth he) what men doe or may suffer in this life: what rac­king, what tearing, what burning and the like: and yet al this is nothing in res­pect [Page 454] of that fire. Thes thinges therfore which we suffer heere, are much more easie then that fire: and yet you see, that men wil doe any thing rather then suffer the same: how much more then ought we to doe that litle which. God commaun­deth vs, to auoide that fire, which is by many degrees more grieuous?’ This was the feeling which learned S. Augustine had in thes affaires.

And truly it is verie straunge and won­derful The feare that olde saintes had of the fire of Purga­torie. Serm. 55. in cant. to consider, how great feare and terrour holie men of auncient time con­ceyued at the verie cogitation of this fire, and how slenderly we passe the same ouer now a daies, hauing infinite more cause to feare then they had. Among other that blessed deuout mā S. Bernard, who lead so examplar and strict a life as the world doth know; entering into contemplation of this matter, brake forth into thes words ensuing. ‘O would God some man would now before hand, prouide for my head abundance of water, & to mine eyes a fountaine of teares; for so perhaps the burning fire should take no hold, where running teares had clensed before. And againe; I tremble and shake for feare, of falling into Gods hands. I wolde gladlie present my self before his face alredie iudged of my self, and not to be iudged thē of him. Therfore I wil make a reckoning whiles I am here both of my good deedes and of my badde. My euil shalbe corrected with better woorkes; they shalbe wate­red [Page 455] with teares; they shalbe punished by fasting; they shalbe amended by sharp dis­cipline. I wil rip vp the verie bottome of my wayes & workes, to the ende he may finde nothing vntried at that day, or not fullie discussed to his handes. And then I hope in his mercie, that he wil not iudge the same faults againe, as he hath promi­sed.’ Hitherto are the wordes of S. Ber­nard. Naum. 1.

The like great feare vttered holy S. Ambrose in thes wordes: ‘O Lord, if thou Ambros. Praecat. prae parat 2. Ad Missam. reserue any thing in me to be reuenged in the next life: yet I humblie beseech the, that thou gyue me not vp to the power of wicked spirits, whiles thou wipest away my sinnes, by the paines of Purgatorie. And againe, in an other place: I shalbe Serm. 1. in Psal. 118. searched & examined as lead (in this fire) and I must burne vntil al the lead be mel­ted away. And if then there be found no siluer metal in me: woe be vnto me, for I Cor. 3. must be thrust doune to the profoundest partes of hel, or els wholie waste away as straw in the fire. But if anie gold or siluer be found in me, not through my workes, but by grace and Christes mer­cie, and through the ministerie of my pre­stoode;’ I shal also once say: surelie they that Psal. 30. trust in the, shal neuer be confounded. And thus much of this temporal punishment reser­ued euen for the purging of Gods seruants in the life to come.

BVT NOVV TOVCHING the re­probate, & such as for their wickednesse. [Page 456] are dessigned to eternal death: we must Imagine that with them the case standeth much more hardlie: for therunto may be applied, that saying of our Sauiour to the good women of Hierusalem, who lamen­ted his case, when he was going to his passion: If they doe these things in grene Luc. 23. vvord: vvhat shal become of the drie? which wordes S. Peter seemeth in some parte to expounde, when he saieth: If the Iudgement 1. Pet. 4. of God begin vvith vs vvhich are his seruants: vvhat shal the end of vvickedmen be? As who wold say, that in al reason, their ende must be intollerable. For more particuler con­ceyuing whereof, because the matter is of great importāce for al Christiās to know: it shal not be perhaps amisse, to consider brieflie, what the holie scriptures & aun­cient fathers of the Catholique Church, (directed no doubt by the holie Ghost) haue reueiled vnto vs, touching this pu­nishment.

And first of al, concerning the place it self of punishment appointed for the dam­ned, Of the na­mes of hel ix diuers tō ­gues. commonlie called hel; the scripture in diuerse languages, vsed diuerse names, but al tending to expresse the grieuous­nesse of torments therin to be endured. As for example, in the latin tongue, it is Esa. 5. & 38. INFER­NVS. called, INFERNVS, that is, a place beneath or vnder ground, as most of the olde fa­thers doe interprete. But whether it be vnder ground or no, most certaine it is, that it is a place most opposit to heauen which is said to be aboue, and from which [Page 457] lucifer was throune doune. And this Iob. 11. Esa. 14. name is vsed to signifie the miserable de­iection and hurling doune of the damned, to be troden vnder the feet, not onlie of almightie God, but also of al good men for euer. For so sayeth the scripture. Be­holde Mala. 4. the day of the Lord commeth burning like a fornace, and al proud and vvicked men shal be stravv to that fornace, and you that feare my name shal tread them dovvne, and they shalbe as burnt ashes vnder the soles of your feet in that day. And this shalbe one of the greatest mi­series that can happen to the proude and stoute potentates of the worlde, to be thrown doune with such contempt, and to be troden vnder the feet of thē, whom they so much despised in this world.

The Hebrue word which the scripture vseth for hel, is SEOL, which signifieth SEOL. Esa. 14. Mat. 14. properly a great ditche or dungeon. In which sense the same place is also called in the Apocalips, lacusirae Dei, the lake of Gods wrath. And againe, Stagnum ardens Apo. 14. Apo. 21. Mat. 11. In cō. supra verba, vide latenter. HADES. ZOPHOS. 2. Pet. 4. igne & sulphure, a poole burning with fire & brimstone. In greek the scripture vseth three wordes for the same place. The first is, HADES, vsed in the ghospel, which (as Plutarch noted) signifieth a place where no light is. The second is ZOPHOS, in S. Pe­ter, which signifieth darknes it self. In which sense it is called also of Iob. terra [...] & operta mortis caligine, a darke Iob. 10. Mat. 22. land and ouer whelmed with deadlie obs­curitie. Also in the ghospel, revebra exterio­res, vtter darknesse. The third greeks 2. Pet. 4. [Page 458] worde is TARTAROS, vsed also by S. Peter: TARTA­ROS. which worde being deriued of the yerbe tarasso, (which signifieth to terrifie, trou­ble, and vexe) importeth an horrible con­fusion of tormentors in that place: euen as Iob sayeth, there is no order, but euer­lasting horrour, which the holy Ghost in an other place describeth more at large in thes wordes; Ther are spirites created to re­uenge, and in their furie they haue sortified their Iob. 10. tormentes. VVhen the final daie shal come, they shal povver forth the force and rage of him that created them; fire, haile, famine, death, teeth of beastes, scorpions, and serpents.

The Chaldie worde (which is also vsed in Hebrew, and translated into greke) is GEHENNA. First of al vsed by Christ our Sa­ueour, Eccle. 39. GEHENNA. Math. 5. for the place of them which are damned, as S. Ierom noteth vpon the tenth chapter of S. Mathewes ghospel. And this Marc. 9. word being compounded of gee and bin­nom, signified a valley nigh to Ierusalem, The valley hinnom. called the valley of hinnom; in which the olde Idolatrous Iewes, were wont to burne aliue their owne children in the honour of the deuil, and to sound with trumpets, tvmprils, and other loud instru­ments, whiles they were making of this abhominable sacrifice, to the ende, the pitiful shrikes and cries of their children might not be heard. And this place was afterward vsed for the receipt of al fil­thines, dung, dead carions, and the like. And most probable it is, that our Sauiour vsed this word GEHENNA aboue al other, [Page 459] for hel; therby to signifie the miserable burning of soules in that place, the pitiful The loth­somnes of hel. clamours and cries of the tormented, the confuse and barbarous noise of the tor­mentors, together with the most lothsom filthinesse of the place; which otherwise is described in the scriptures, by the na­mes of adders, snakes, cocatrices, scor­pions, and other venemouse creatures, as hath bene and shalbe afterwards decla­red. And with this word GEHENNA, con­curreth also in signification an other vsed by the Prophet Esaie, to denote the same place; that is to saie, TOPHET. Which pro­perly TOPHET. signifieth the forsaid valley of the children of Hinnom; but is applied ex­presly to declare and represent the most horrible dungeon of dāned soules. Which Esaie, (talking of God as of a great king,) describeth in thes wordes. From eternitie is Esa. 30. TOPHET prepared by this king, a profound and spatious roome. His food is fire and store of vvood: The breath of our lords mouth doth kendle the same, like a maine riuer of brimstone.

AND NOVV HAVING thus de­clared OF the paines OF hel. the names of this place & thereby also in some part, the nature: it remaineth that we examine, what maner of paines men suffer in the same. For declaration whereof, we must consider, that as heauē and hel are contrary, assigned to contrary persones, for contrary causes: so haue they in al respectes contrarie properties, con­ditions, and effects; in such sort, as what­soeuer is spokē of the felicitie of the one, [Page 460] may serue to inferre the calamitie of the other. As for example; when S. Paule 1. Cor. [...]. sayeth, that no eye hath seene, nor eare hath beard, nor hart conceyued the ioyes that God hath prepared for them that shalbe saued: we may interre, that the pains of the damned must be of like proportion. So againe, when the scripture saith, that the felicitie of thē in heauen is a per