ADMONITION To Doctor BURGES; And to those who either COMPOS'D Or caused to be RE-PRINTED, That Seditious PAMPHLET, Entituled, The Common-Prayer-Book Ʋnmasked; And to all others, who endeavour to Maintain that Factious Opinion, That the use of the Liturgie of the Church of England, is sinfull.

By EDMUND ELIS, Rector of East-Allington in Devon.

London, Printed by Matthew Inman, for James Magnes, living in Russel-street near Covent-Garden, 1661.

To Doctor BURGES, &c.


IF you believe There is a GOD that shall judge the World, be not overhasty to condemn this Paper directed unto you, from one whose Prin­cipal Encouragement to such attempts is, That it being the Love of God, which inclines him thereunto, to Comply with those inclinations by the help of the same SPIRIT, from which they proceed, is it self a Reward, becoming the Giver of every good and perfect Gift: for (of late) my heart has been much vers'd in the appre­hensions of this Truth, That the Happiness of man wholly consists in Doing His Will, who is the Fountain of LIFE and LIGHT, and LOVE. If it shall please GOD to give any successe to this Attempt by piercing your Hearts, through my words, by the Sword of his SPIRIT, my de­sire is that it may never come to my knowledge, unless the knowledge of it may prompt me to some fresh attempts of the like nature, &c. lest perhaps it should prove a tem­tation unto me to Expect the Praise of men, and by that means deprive me of (that which I now enjoy) the praise of God.

[Page 2] Saith this Erroneous Opinion, That the use of the Ly­turgie of the Church of England is Sinfull, Superstitious, and Idolatrous, was one of the greatest causes of those horrid Com­bustions in this Church and State, which HE by whom KINGS Reign has so wonderfully Supprest, and we hope in time will quite Extinguish. I cannot but esteem those men as notorious Incendiaries, who endeavour still to keep the people they have already Seduced, in this Factious Opinion, and continually to draw others into it. I boldly appeal to the Judgement of all Impartial men upon the face of the Earth, whether these two opinions which usually go toge­ther, Viz. that the people may fight against their lawfull Prince, so it be for Reformation, &c. and that our Religi­on, as to publick Worship, is sinfull and Antichristian, so bad that tis necessary it should be Reformed, do not tend directly to the stirring up of a new Rebellion? Yea, was not this Opinion the Entrance into that Labyrinth of Error, wherein those Wretches had Lost themselves, who were lately Drawn, Hangd, and Quarterd for being in Actuall Re­bellion against him, who has hitherto appeard to be not only the most Gracious of Princes, but also the Meekest of Men? But it may be you will say, That you do not teach the People that it may be lawfull for them in some cases to take up Arms against their King: but you plainly do that which is almost as bad: You endeavour to perswade the People, that That way of Worshipping God in publick, which is practised by the King and the Bishops, is sinful, and by consequence, that there is a very great need of Reformation in our Church; Which Imagination was one of the Roots and Principles of our late Rebellion; and in the mean time it is most evident that you Connive (at lest) at this Cursed Opinion, That in case there be need of a Reformation, the People may justly take up Arms against their Lawfull SOVERAIGNE, if it may not be affected by other means.

Thus I have briefly discovered the Considerations, which moved me to make this Address unto you, To Charge you be­fore God; and the Lord Jesus Christ, that you be not so Rash and Precipitant in endeavouring to engage the mindes of [Page 3] the ignorant Vulgar in such averseness to that excellent Set-form of prayer, which was composed, and is still used by so many men of Eminence for Parts, and Learn­ing, and Piety, whereas most of the Arguments which you produce against it, are so notoriously weak and frivo­lous, that I cannot but fear that the most learned of you do not believe your selves those things to be Truthes, which you would impose as such upon the Mindes of others. What an Argument is this (which some of you have Print­ed) that the Common-Prayer cannot please God, because it pleases the Papists: (which I have answered, or rather expos'd to contempt, in a small Treatise I lately published?) What an Argument is this against that excellent Hymn, en­tituled Te Deum, which (who that loves the Lord Jesus Christ in Sincerity can possibly read or hear, but must needs be affected with some Spiritual Delight in attending unto it?) That Reasons shewing the necessiry of Reformation, &c. P. is a piece ta­ken out of the Mass-Book. If you meant that twas composed by a Papist, tis unquestiona­bly false: If you mean that the Papists make use of it in their publick Worship, may you not Argue in the same maner against the use of many portions of Scri­pture? But suppose it had been composed by a Papist: shall we not make use of that which in it self is intirely good, be­cause he had some bad opinions who was the Author of it? Oh, blush, & be ashamed, that ever you published such Folly as this. Some of you have said that this part of the Letany, By Common-Prayer-Book unmasked. P. 27.the Mystery of thy holy Incarna­tion, by thy holy Nativity and Circumcision, by thy Baptisme Fasting, and Temptation, by thine A­gony and bloody Sweat, by thy cross and Passion, by thy precious Death and Burial, and by the coming of the Holy Ghost, Good Lord deliver us, is not better then that Conjuring or Juggling of of the Magicians, whereby they seemed to imitate Moses his work­ing of Miracles.

Hear O Heavens, and hearken O earth! What impudence is this? Could there ever be better words then these found out to be used in Prayer? What words can we [Page 4] ever compose that are more apt to bring the souls of those that hear or reed them, to an Inward Spiritual Sense of the mercy of God in CHRIST, in which consists the very Essence and Formality of true Prayer, or of the Worshiping of God in Spirit and in Truth? Surely I fear that those men who wrote this Pamphlet, had not Felt the power of Godliness working in their souls through a Faithful, or Practical Ap­prehension, or understanding of the Person of the Glorious [...], Our blessed Mediatour, the Son of God, and the Sone of MAN: for most improbable it is that any one who effectually apprehends the Mystery our great Salva­tion, canne so Quarrel with those words, whose Nature and Property is to Signifie it unto him, to Actuate our souls in the Notion of those several wayes By, or Through which CHRIST JESUS is made unto us of GOD, Wise­dom, and Righteousness, and Sanctification, and Redemption.

Rather then I would believe that this part of the Letany is no better then Conjuring, &c. I should think that those men are no better then Bewitched that esteem it so to be: so little is there in all the Arguments they can get to maintain their opinion, even of the appearance of Reason. You, the divers Ministers of sundry Counties Reasons, &c. Pag. 30. have said, that this expression in one of the Prayers after the Communion, Those things which for our unworthiness we dare mot, and for our blindness we cannot ask, vouchsafe to give us, &c. is a Contradiction: For (say you) while we say we dare not ask. (We) do ask, and pray him to give us; Can we pray thus in Faith?

Yes (say you, in the Person of a Respondent) When we pray for this for the worthiness of Christ, as after followeth: Well Answered, surely this Answer is sufficient for that Objection that it is a Contradiction: for sure I am any one of you who has not quite forgot his Logick, will not say but that without a Contradiction, a man may speak of the same persons that they dare, and not dare, viz. in divers respects the thoughts of our own unworthiness, and GODS glory when we draw nigh unto him, fill us with Reverence and [Page 5] Hebr. 12. 8. Godly Fear: But the thoughts of that Great Heb. 4. 14, 16. High Priest that is passed into the hea­vens, Jesus the Son of God, makes us come bold­ly to the throne of Grace. But you fly to another Argument. If our own unworthiness (say you) causeth us not to dare to ask, Why do we pray elsewhere for ought else at all? We who wor­ship God in Spirit, and in Truth, in the use of the Com­mon-Prayer, do not believe that we may ask any thing at all of God, but with confidence in his mercy, through the Worthiness of Jesus Christ: but I presume your selves will joyn with us in this Assertion, That it is not necessary in all our Vocal Petitions to name CHRIST, though that Petition shall never be granted, which is not put up unto GOD with some Confidence (Holy and acceptable to GOD) that it shall be granted, produced in our hearts by the Vir­tue of some Direct Apprehensions of his Person, which you know may remain in the heart, when those Apprehensions themselves are not Actually there. The rest of your Argu­ments against that Excellent, and most usefull Set form of Prayer, seem to me as weak and frivolous, as those I have here mentioned: so that I think that the shortest, and most Compendious way of convincing you of your Error, is this, To Exhort you in the Name of the GOD of Truth to look into your own hearts, and to consider seriously whether your selves do truly and sincerely believe those things to be True, which you pretend to Demonstrate unto others: I conceive that your belief of them is onely a Fancy, or such an Imagination, as is really the product of the First thoughts which we place upon those Truthes, which are any way ca­pable of opposition: but, I should be too favourable to your Cause, if I should grant that the Truthes you would op­pose, are capable of Oppostion, viz. of being rendred seeming­ly false (to any Considering person.) Can any of you (who are men of any Parts, or Learning) upon Second Thoughts or mature Deliberation, conceive that, that expression, Those things which for our unworthiness, &c. is a Contradiction, or that the Common-Prayer cannot please God, because it pleaseth the Papists, &c. Ah, Sirs, for your Countrys [Page 6] sake, for your souls sake, for your God's sake, Consider; what you doe▪ be not so forward to publish such Writings, as are so undoubtedly false, and can onely prevail upon the thoughts of those men, who are either blinde (through Ignorance) or Purblind through Prejudice.) Ah, Sirs, you have done wickedly? What! Cause such a multitude to fancy themselves to deserve the name of the godly, because (for sooth) they are not for the use of the Surplice, and the Book of Common-Prayer? Those of you, who have ever had any Scholastick Education, I conceive to be rather perverse, then simply Erroneous (as in effect I have said before) and therefore I do not think you so fit to be Disputed with, as to be Prayed for. If you swell with wrath, and inordinate Passion, upon the reading of what I have here written (as some of you have done upon the like occasion) Consider I beseech you, that the time draws on apace when you, and I shall appear before His judgement seat, who searcheth our hearts: who seeth his heart who wrote these lines, and the hearts of those that read them: And therefore I Conclude with that saying of the Apostle, with which you Conclude your Epistle to the Parliament, Let your Mo­deration be known unto all men; The Lord is at hand.


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