Αντεροτεματα Thomae Dra [...]i.
TEN COVNTER­DEMAVNDS PRO­pounded to those of the Separati­on, (or English Donatists) to be directly, and distinctly answered.

1. WHether, that their rent, Schisme, and Separation from the Church and Con­gregations of England, can (in any probabilitie) bee pleasing vnto God, seeing, it hath had such vnhappy beginnings, the a first foun­der Maister Bolton. of it, comming to Iudas his shamefull and fear­full ende, hanging himselfe: and the b second to­tally Maister Browne. recanting it, and reioyning himselfe to our Church, as diuers of their proselites doe daily: see­ing also it hath had so small encreases, and so many dismall and fatall euents, and diuisions: one side ex­communicating the other, some of them turning Maister Nowell of Sheldon in Warwicke-shire &c. Anabaptists, and c others dying and distracted, by reason of irresolution.

2. Whether, that the quintessenced profession, Religion and discipline of these Nouations and In­nouators, [Page] as it standeth in opposition to the Church of England, and the rest of the reformed Churches) can bee of God, or, haue any approbation from God, seeing that it hath no vertue, power and effi­cacy in it (as the Gospell preached in our English assemblies by Gods blessing aboundantly hath) to winne, conuert, and drawe vnto their partie and profession, Atheists, Pap [...]sts, Heretikes, rude, profane and ignorant people: The Apostles, Euangelists, and ther holy successors, conuerted all sorts vnto God, but these refined reformers, onely seduce the sound, and peruert and estrange from vs, those, that are otherwise well affected, and of some vnderstan­ding and make them twofold more refractary then themselues.

3. Whether that (in the very separatists con­science) our reformed assemblies, (wherein the Gospell of Christ is sincerely preached and profes­sed, and the Sacraments duly and rightly admini­stred) Mat. 23. v. 2. 3. are worse then the Iewes Synagogues, in which notwithstanding Christ his Apostles preached; & our Ministers, worse then the Scribes and Pharisees, that sat in Moses Chaire, when Christ commandeth the people to heare, and obserue and doe, whatsoeuer (according to Moses Lawe) they did bid them ob­serue. Wherefore (to reason à minore ad maius) if our Lord Iesus, his Disciples, and the people did not separate from their Synagogues and assem­blies, that were in faith and maners farre more de­fectiue then ours are, much lesse ought they to se­parate from our Church and assemblies, wherein, all the grounds of Christian Religion are soundly held, and professed.

[Page] 4. Whether that those great multitudes of peo­ple (though hitherto wanting the pretended Church-constitution of the Separatists) that euen Mat. 14. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. fasting heard our Lord Iesus preach, and professed themselues his Disciples, (albeit many of them Ioh. 6. 5. 10. 11. were drawen, not by doctrine but by miracles, re­port, & with a desire to be fed) can with any reason bee denied to bee members of the visible Church, and whither those three thousands which blessed Ioh. 6. 27. Peter at one Sermon conuerted (for they were bap­tized, continued in the Apostles doctrine, fellow­ship, breaking of bread and praiers.) were not, be­fore that Presbyters and Deacons were chosen, true members of a visible Church, and this cannot bee refuted, and why are not our Church assemblies in England, (much more grounded in the truth) &c. a true visible Church? and then with what consci­ence, doe, or can these Separatists sequester and Act. 2. 37. 38. 41. rent themselues from them?

5. Whether, (to ascend no higher, and neerer the Apostles to me as I might) that in Constantines the first Christian Emperours time, and euer since vnto Mr. Iohn Caluins dayes, for the space of some thirteene hundred yeares, there was no Christian Churches in Asia, Africke, Europe, because they had the same outward constitution formal State, Bishops, Arch-bishops, Metropolitans, & Church-gouernment (for substance and substance of doctrine) that our English Church hath, and retaineth. And if those were true visible Churches, why are not ours (also?)

6. Whether, that the reformed Churches in the [Page] lower, and higher Germany, in France, the Church of Geneua &c. (that come neerer to their constituti­on and discipline, then ours doe in England,) bee true visible Churches, or no? if they be such, why then doe they not adioyne themselues to some of them, but distast them as much as they doe ours? And why doe they not in iudgment assent vnto any or all of those reformed Churches, that with a ioynt consent (as may appeare by the harmonie of Con­fession) acknowledge the Church of England to be a true visible Church, and giue vnto it the right-hand of fellowship? how dare they refuse such a cloude of witnesses? will these [...] put out all their eyes? is there no Church in the world but their Platonicall Idea?

7. How can the Church, or, Church-assemblies of England, bee false, Antichristian, bastardized, wherein the Gospell, is so soundly and solemnly and substantially taught and professed, and the Sa­craments, so rightly administred and receiued, whose Bible translations, (specially the last English transla­tion done by his Maiesty command) are so pure, that the very Separatists rest in them: wherein are so many thousands, yea hundred thousands of true Converts and orthodoxe Christians, that hath bred and brought forth so many excellent and renowned Martyrs, who haue sealed the trueth of our religion with their bloud, and died members of the prote­stant Churches; wherein so many Christian exiles are comfortably harboured, wherein so many sound, religious and learned Pastors, Doctors, Prea­chers, as (for proportion) no Country in the world [Page] can afford the like; and by whose doctrine, writings, disputes, (not to speake of the Magistrates sword) the Romish Ierico hath bin more shaken, and the se­cond beast the Antichrist, more fatally wounded, then by any nationall Church whatsoeuer: and which Church, and the members thereof, haue beene so wonderfully blessed and protected, and so strangly deliuered from the rage, tumults, de­signes, treasons, conspiracies of the Romish Anti­christ and all his adherents: and in which Churches (as one of the princiall Separatists I. R. in his ad­monition ad lectorem, in his owne name and in the name of his faction, lately prefixed before the third booke of M. Robert Parker, de politia ecclesi. pag. 368. confesseth, that the grace of God by the Gos­pell, in respect of the cheife heads of true Christian faith, by diuers of the faithfull preached, doth so abound, that there are very many godly and holy men in these assemblies, both of Reformitants and Conformitants, which they acknowledge for bre­thren in Christ &c. We haue (by their owne con­fession) sound faith, and holinesse, why then doe they or how dare they sunder and rent themselues from such a Church, and why will they for acci­dents and circumstances, denie and renounce the substance of a Church? And if they (vpon bettercō ­sideration) estcēc vs brethren, with what warrant cā they seperate from holy brethren in Christ, is it not good and pleasant for to see brethren to dwell together in vnitie? Did not the conuerts in S. Peters dayes continue dayly with one accord in the Temple &c. And why doe not our Separatists who would be [Page] accounted conuerted Saints, imitate them, must wee leaue and forsake a goodly Cittie, for the weak­nesse of the walls? Act, 2. 46.

8. How can the formall state (as they call it) of the Prouinciall, Diocesan, Cathedrall & Parishionall Chur­ches of England, and the regiment thereof, be vn­lawfull, papall, Antichristian? And how doe, or, can the Lawes of the land, and Ecclesiasticall Cannons confirme it? seeing that the name, calling & office of B B: whether we respect ordination of ministers or power of iurisdiction, is (as hath ben, & will be proued) for substance expressed in diuers pla­ces of the new Testament; seeing, it hath had a con­tinuall succession from the Apostles time to this day, as all auncient Fathers and Counsells acknow­ledge: and seeing that (at least) this formall estate of Diocesan, Parishionall and Cathedrall Churches, hath bin in vse, long before Antichrist was hatched, for the Pope was not Antichrist before he had got­ten Anno. 1607. the Title of vniuersall Bishop, nor complete vntill he had gotten into his hands both swords, that is, both Ciuill and Ecclesiasticall Dominion: Doth not euery Bishop amongst vs, euery Pastor and ecclesiasticall officer, abiure the Prpes vsurped supremacie? Doe not our statutes, and Cannons directly make againg papistry and Idolafry? What will Sathan expell Sathan, and will the members of Antichrist fight against Antichrist? And admitt all bee, as you pretend, doe we not (at least) kill Anti­christ with his owne sword and weapons?

9. Whether, any new lawes can, or ought to be enacted, or any further reformation made without [Page] the Christian Princes or Magistrates consent, or e­uer in a well ordered Church hath bene enacted, or made and whether, they haue done well, to seperate with out the Kings Maiesties leaue and licence, and consent of the state?

10. Whether, it were not the separatists best course, to returne to Gods true Church and people, from which (vpon some concealed hard dealing) they haue made an vnlawfull rent, and therein to confer with the best learned, and if still their consciences be somewhat tender, to supplicate for some fauour and liberty, or if they will not take this course, whe­ther it were not good for them, for the avoiding of scandall, and in expectance of some pros­perous successe, by the permission of our noble King, and honourable Coun­sell to remoue into Virginia, and make a plantation there, in hope to conuert in­fidels to Christi­anitie?


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