[Page] THE Council of Trent EXAMIN'D and DISPROV'D BY Catholick Tradition. In the main Points in Controversie be­tween Us and the Church of Rome; WITH A Particular Account of the Times and Oc­casions of introducing them; PART I. To which a PREFACE is prefixed con­cerning the true Sense of the Council of Trent and the Notion of Transubstantiation.

The Second Edition Corrected. WITH An APPENDIX in Answer to some late Passages of J. W. of the Society of Jesus, Concerning the Prohibiting of Scripture in Vulgar Languages.

LONDON, Printed for H. Mortlock at the Phoenix in S. Pauls Church-yard, 1688.


THere is it seems a Train in Controversies, as well as in Thoughts; one thing still giving a start to another; Conferences produce Letters; Letters, Books; and one Discourse gives Occasion for another. For this follows the former as a necessary Pursuit of the same Argument against Tradition.

I. S. in his last Letter, had vouched the Authority of the Council of Trent proceeding upon Tradition, and he instanced in three Points, Transubstantiation, Sacramen­tal Third Letter p. 64. Confession and Extreme Unction. The Examination of this I thought fit to reserve for a Discourse by it self; wherein, instead of confining my Self to those three Par­ticulars, I intend to go through the most material Points there established, and to prove from the most Authentick Testimonies, that there was no true Catholick Tradition for any of them. And if I can make good what I have undertaken, I shall make the Council of Trent it Self the great Instance against the Infallibility of Tradition.

This is a new Undertaking; which the impetuousness of our Adversaries setting up Tradition for the Ground of their Faith, hath brought me to. But besides the shewing that really they have not Tradition on their side; I have endeavoured to trace the several steps and to set down the Times and Occasions of Introducing those Points which [Page ii] have caused that unhappy breach in the Christian world, whose sad effects we daily see and lament, But have little hopes to see remied, till these new Points be discarded and Scripture interpreted by truely Catholick Tradition, be made the Standard of Christian Communion.

I do not pretend, that all these Points came in at one Time or in the same Manner; for some Errours and Corruptions came in far more early; some had the favour of the Church of Rome in a higher degree; some were more ge­nerally received in the Practice of the Church in later times, than others; and some were merely School Points before the Council of Trent, but as far as the Thomists and Scotists could be made to agree there against the Re­formers, these passed for Articles of Faith. For, this was one of the great Arts of that Council to draw up their Decrees in such Terms, as should leave Room enough for Eternal Wranglings among themselves, provided they agreed in doing the business effectually against the Here­ticks, as they are pleased to call them. I therefore for­bear to urge these as Points of Faith, which have been freely debated among themselves since the Council of Trent, without any Censure. We have enough in the plain Decrees and Canons of that Council, without medling with any School-Points. And so I cannot be charged with Misrepresenting.

The great Debate of late hath been about the true Exposi­tion of the Points there defined; and for my part, I am con­tent to yield to any just and reasonable Methods of giving the true sense of them. And such I conceive these to be,

I. Where the Council of Trent makes use of Words in a strict and limited Sense, there it is unreasonable to un­derstand them in a large and improper Sense. As for in­stance, Sess. 6. c. 26. It decrees that Justified Persons [Page iii] do verè promerere; truely merit Eternal Life; and Can. 32. there is an Anathema against him who denies true Merit in the good Works of justified Persons, both as to Increase of Grace and Eternal Life. There is no one conversant in Ancient Writers, but knows that there was a large and improper Sense of the Word Merit; but how is it impossible to apply that Sense, where such Care is ta­ken, that it may be understood in a strict and limited Sense? If the Council had left the Word in its General Sense, there might have been Reason to have given the fairest Interpretation to it; but when it is certainly known, that there had been a difference of Opinions in the Church of Rome about true and proper Merit, and that which was not (however it were called,) and the Council de­clares for the former, no man of understanding can believe that onely the improper Sense was meant by it. As in the Point of the Eucharist when the Council declares that the words of Christ, This is my Body, are truely and properly to be understood; Would it not be thought strange for any one to say, that the Council notwithstanding might mean that Christ's Words may be figuratively understood? And we must take the true notion of Merit not from any large expressions of the Ancients, but from the Conditions of true and proper Merit among themselves. But of this at large afterwards. So as to the Notion of Sacraments; every one knows how largely that Word was taken in An­cient Writers; but it would be absurd to understand the Council of Trent in that Sense, when Sess. 6. Can. 1. De Sacramentis, it denounces an Anathema not merely against him that denies seven Sacraments; but against him that doth not hold every one of them to be truely and properly a Sacrament. And in the Creed of Pius IV. one Article is, that there are seven true and proper Sacraments How vain a thing then were it for any [Page iv] to Expound the Sacraments in a large and improper Sense?

II. Where the Council of Trent hath not declared it self, but it is fully done in the Catechism made by its Ap­pointment, we ought to look on that, as the true Sense of the Council. As in the Case of the Sacraments; the Council never declares what it means by true and proper Sacraments; but the Catechism makes large and full a­mends for this Defect. For after it hath mention'd the Catechism Rom. Part 2. use of the Word in Profane and Sacred Writers, it sets down the Sense of it according to their Divines for a sen­sible sign which conveys the Grace which it signifies. And after a large Explication of the Nature of Signs, it gives this Description of a true and proper Sacrament, that it is a sensible thing, which by Divine Institution not only hath the force of signifying but of causing Grace. And to shew the Authority of this Catechism for explicating the Doctrine of the Sacraments we need only to look into Sess. 24. c. 7. de Reform. where it is requi­red that the People be instructed in the Sacraments ac­cording to [...]it. It is supposed that the Catechism was ap­pointed to be made in the 18th Ses [...]ion at the Instigation of Carolus Borromaeus, (since Canonized) but it was not finished while the Council sate, and therefore Sess. 25. it was refer'd to the Judgment and Authority of the Pope. I confess therefore it hath not a Conciliar Autho­rity stamped upon it, but it hath a sort of transfused In­fallibility, as far as they could convey it; and as much as a Council hath, when it borrows it from the Popes Con­firmation. It was near two Tears hammering at Trent, viz. from 26. of Feb. 1562. to Decemb. 1563. when the Council rose; Afterwards, it was preparing at Rome three Years longer, and then presented to the Pope to be ap­proved, and published by his Authority, after it had been [Page v] carefully review'd by Cardinal Sirlet, Borromeo, and o­thers; and hath since been universally received in the Ro­man Church; so that we can have no more Authentick Exposition of the Sense of the Council of Trent, than what is contained in that Cat [...]chism.

III. Where the Council of Trent declares a thing in general to be lawfull and due, but doth not express the manner of it, that is to be understood from the generally receiv'd and allowed Practices at that time. For, other­wise the Council must be charged with great unfaithfulness in not setting down and correcting publick and notorious Abuses, when it mention'd the things themselves and some Abuses about them. As in the 25th Session, concerning Purgatory, Invocation of Saints, Worship of Images and Relicks, it goes no farther than that the sound Doc­trine be taught, that Saints are to be Invocated, Images and Relicks to be Worship'd; but never defines what that sound Doctrine is, what bounds are to be set in the Wor­ship of Saints, Images and Relicks, which it is unlawfull to exceed. So that in this Case, we have no other way to judge of the Meaning of the Council, but by comparing the Publick and Allow'd Practices of the Church with the General Decrees of the Council. And we have this farther Reason for it, that we are told by the latest Expo­sitors of it, that the Sense of the Church in speculative Points, is to be taken from Publick Practices. For, thus one of them expresses himself, Moreover, even her Spe­culative Reply to the Defence of the Expo [...] ­tion, &c. p. 134. Doctrines are so mixed with Practical Ceremo­nies, which represent them to the Vulgar, and instruct even the meanest Capacities in the abstrusest Doctrines, that it seems ever impossible to make an alteration in her Doctrine without abrogating her Ceremonies, or chang­ing her constant Practices.

[Page vi] IV. Where the Decrees of the Council, are not suffi­ciently clear, there we must take in the Canons to make the Sense more plain. This Rule I take from the Council it self, which in the 6th Session, just before the Canons saith, that those are added, that all may know not only what they are to hold and follow, but what they are to shun and avoid. As in the famous Instance of Transub­stantiation; suppose, that the Words of the Decree do not determine expresly the Modus; yet it is impossible for any one to doubt of it who looks into the Canon, which denoun­ces an Anathema against him, not only that denies Tran­substantiation, but that asserts the substance of Bread and Sess. 13. Can. 2. Wine to remain after Consecration. Therefore he that asserts Transubstantiation according to the Council of Trent, must hold it in such a manner, as thereby to un­derstand that the Substance of Bread and Wine doth not remain. Otherwise he is under an Anathema by the ex­press Canon of the Council.

Therefore it is so far from being a fatal Oversight, (as a late Author expresses it,) to say that the Council of Trent hath determin'd the Modus of the Real Presence, that no man who is not resolved to oversee it can be of ano­ther Opinion. And herein the Divines of the Church of Rome do agree with us, viz. that the particular Modus is not only determin'd by the Council, but that it is a Mat­ter of Faith to all Persons of the Communion of that Church. As not only appears from the 2d Canon, but from the very Decree it self, Sess. 13. ch. 4.

The holy Synod declares, that by Consecration of the Bread and Wine, there is a Conversion of the whole Substance of the Bread into the Substance of the Body of Christ, and of the whole Substance of the Wine into the Substance of his Blood, which Conversion is fitly [Page vii] and properly by the holy Catholick Church called Tran­substantiation. In which Words the Council doth plainly express the Modus of the Real Presence to be, not by a Presence of Christ's Body together with the Substance of the Bread, as the Lutherans held, but by a Conversion of the whole Substance of the Bread into the Substance of the Body, &c. And since there were different Man­ners of understanding this Real Presence, if the Council did not Espouse one so, as to reject the other as Heretical; then it is impossible to make the Lutheran Doctrine to be de­clared to be Heretical, i. e, unless the Council did deter­mine the Modus of the Real Presence. For, if it did not, then notwithstanding the Decrees and Canons of the Council of Trent, Persons are at liberty to believe either Transubstantiation or Consubstantiation, which I think no Roman Catholick will allow.

But. it is said, that the meaning of the Decree is, that the Real Presence is not to be understood after a Natural, but a Sacramental Manner; But doth it not plainly tell us, how that Sacramental Manner is to be understood, viz. by a Conversion of the whole Substance of the Bread in­to the whole Substance of the Body, &c. And if other ways be possible, and all others be rejected, then this parti­cular Modus must be determin'd.

I grant, that the Council doth not say, there is an An­nihilation of the Elements; and I know no Necessity of using that Term, for that which is supposed to be turned into another thing cannot properly be said to be Annihilated (which is the reducing it to nothing) but the Council doth assert a Total Conversion of one Substance into another, and where that is, that Substance must wholly cease to be what it was; and so, there can be no Substance of the Ele­ments remaining after Consecration. For, as Aquinas ob­serves, Quod convertitur in aliquid factâ Conversione [Page viii] non manet. If then the Substance of the Elements doth 3 Q. 75. A. 2. not remain after Consecration, by virtue of this total Con­version, then the Council of Trent by its Decree hath plainly determin'd the Modus of the Real Presence, so as to exclude any such Manner, as doth suppose, the Sub­stance to remain, whether it be by Impanation or Consub­stantiation, or any other way.

What if Rupertus thought the Bread might become the Real Body of Christ by an Union of the Word to it? All that can be infer'd is, that the Modus was not then so determin'd, as to oblige all Persons to hold it. But what is this to the Council of Trent? Can any one hold the Substance to remain, and not to remain at the same time? For, he that holds with Rupertus must allow the Substance to remain; he that believes a total Conversion must deny it. And he that can believe both these at once, may believe what he pleases.

But the Council only declares the Sacramental Pre­sence to be after an ineffable manner. I say, it deter­mines it to be by a total Conversion of one Substance in­to another; which may well be said to be ineffable, since what cannot be understood can never be expressed.

Our Dispute is not about the use of the Word, Transub­stantiation, for I think it proper enough to express the Sense of the Council of Trent; but as the Word Consub­stantial did exclude all other Modes how Christ might be the Son of God, and determin'd the Faith of the Church to that Manne [...]; so doth the Sense of Transubstantiation, as determin'd by the Council of Trent, limit the Manner of the Real Presence, to such a Conversion of the Sub­stance of the Elements into the Substance of Christ's Bo­dy and Blood, as doth imply no Substance to remain after Consecration.

[Page ix] It is to no purpose to tell us, the Council uses only the Word Species and not Accidents; for whatever they are called, the Council denounces its Anathema against those who hold the Substance to remain after Consecration; and denies the Total Conversion of the Substance of the Bread and Wine into the Substance of the Body and Bloud of Christ. If the Substance be not there, the Modus is to purpose determin'd. And whatever remains, call it what you will, it is not the Substance; and that is sufficient to shew, that the Council of Trent hath clearly determin'd the Modus of the Real Presence.

V. We must distinguish the School Points left undeter­min'd by the Council of Trent, from those which are made Articles of Faith. We never pretend, that it left no School-Disputes about the Points there determin'd; but we say it went too far in making some School-Points to be Points of Faith, when it had been more for the Peace of Christendom to have left them to the Schools still. Thus in the Point of Transubstantiation, the elder School-men tell us, there were different Ways of explaining the Real Presence; And that those, which supposed the substance to remain, were more agreeable to Reason and Scripture than the other; and some were of Opinion, that the Modus was no matter of Faith then. But after the Point of the Real Presence came to be warmly contested in the time of Berengarius, it rose by degrees higher and higher, till at last the particular Modus came to be determin'd with an Anathema by the Council of Trent.

When Berengarius, A. D. 1059. was forced to Recant by Nicolaus 2d, with the Assistance of 113. Bishops; no more was required of him, than to hold that the Bread and Wine after Consecration; are not only the Sacra­ment, but the true Body and Bloud of Christ, and that [Page x] it is sensibly handled and broke by the Priests hands, and eaten by the Communicants. Here is no denying the Sub­stance of Bread to remain; and Joh. Parisiensis observes, that the words cannot be defended but by an Assumption of the Bread; for, saith he, If the Body of Christ be truely and sensibly handled and eaten, this cannot be understood of Christ's Glorious Body in Heaven, but it must be of the Bread really made the Body of Christ after Consecration.

The Sense which the Canonists put upon the Words of this Recantation is absurd, viz. that they are to be un­derstood of the Species; For Berengarius his Opinion related to the Substance of Christ's Body which he denied to be in the Sacrament. And what would it have signified for him to have said that Christ was sensibly broken and eaten under the Species of Bread and Wine? i. e. that his Body was not sensibly broken and eaten but the Species were. It had signified something, if he had said, there was no Substance of Bread and Wine left but only the Species. But all the design of this Recantation was to make him assert the Sacrament to be made the true and real Body of Christ in as strong a manner, as the Pope and his Brethren could think of. And although the Canonists think, if strictly taken, it implies greater He­resie than that of Berengarius; yet by their favour, this Form was only thought fit to be put into the Canon-Law, as the Standard of the Faith of the Roman Church then; and the following Abjuration of Berengarius was only kept in the Register of Gregory the seventh's Epistles.

For about twenty years after by Order of Gregory VII. Berengarius was brought to another Abjuration, but by no means after the same Form with the former. For by this he was required to declare, that the Bread and Wine are sub­stantially Converted into the true and proper Flesh and [Page xi] Bloud of Christ, and after Censecration are the true Body of Christ born of the Virgin and Sacrificed upon the Cross, and that sits at the right hand of the Father; and the true Bloud of Christ which was shed out of his Side, not only as a Sacramental Sign, but in propriety of Nature and Reality of Substance.

This was indeed a pretty bold Assertion of the Sub­stantial Presence. And so much the bolder, if the Com­mentary on S. Matthew be Hildebrand's. For there he saith, the manner of the Conversion is uncertain. But as far as I can judge, by Substantial Conversion he did not then mean, as the Council of Trent doth, a total Con­version of one substance into another, so as that nothing of the former Substance remains; but that there was a Change by Consecration not by making the Body of Christ of the Substance of the Bread, but by its passing into that Body of Christ which was born of the Virgin. For, upon comparing the two Forms, there we shall find lies the main difference. Pope Nicolaus went no farther than to the true Body of Christ; which it might be as well by Assumption, as Conversion; Gregory VII. went farther and thought it necessary to add that the Change was into the Substance of that Body which was born of the Virgin, &c. And so this second Form excludes a true Body merely by Assumption, and asserts the Change to be into the Substance of Christ's Body in Heaven; but it doth not determine, that nothing of the Substance of the Elements doth remain. For when he puts that kind of Substantial Conversion which leaves nothing but the Accidents, and the Body of Christ to be under them, which belonged to the Substance of the Elements; he declares this matter to be uncertain. Which shews, that however a Change was owned into the Substance of Christ's Body, yet such a total Conversion, as is deter­mined [Page xii] by the Council of Trent, was not then made an Article of Faith.

But from this supposition made by Hildebrand it appears, that the Dectrine of Substance and Accidents was then well known; and therefore the introducing Aristotle's Phi­losophy from the Arabians afterwards could make no Al­teration in this Matter. For the words of Hildebrand are as plain as to the difference of Substance and Acci­dents, as of any of the School-men; and that the Acci­dents of the Bread and Wine might be separated from the Substance of them; but this was not then made a Matter of Faith; as it was afterwards.

But the case was remarkably alter'd, after the Lateran Council under Innocent III. For Transubstantiation being admitted there among the Articles of Faith; and so entred in the Canon-Law in the very beginning of the Decretals; this did not merely become a School-Term, but by the Inqui­sitors of that time, it was accounted Heresie to deny it. It may be sufficiently proved by the School-men and Canonists, that a difference of Opinions, as to the Modus did still con­tinue, (but that belongs to a more proper place) and Joh. Parisiensis declares (p. 103) that the Lateran Coun­cil in his Opinion did not make Transubstantiation a Point of Faith; or at least that Substance was not to be taken for the Matter, but the Suppositum; but the Inquisitors went more briskly to work and made it down­right [...]esie to assert, that the Substance of the Elements did remain after Consecration.

Of this, we have full Evidence in the Register of Court­ney Arch-Bishop of Canterbury, (which is no Invisible Manuscript.) For there we read f. 25. that he called a select Convecation of Bishops, Divines and Canonists, May 17. A. D. 1382. to declare some Propositions to be Heretical, and s [...]me to be Erroneous and contrary to the [Page xiii] determination of the Church. Among the first, these two are set down in the first Place,

1. That the material Substance of the Bread and Wine doth remain in the Sacrament of the Altar after Consecration.

2. That the Accidents do not remain without their Subject in that Sacrament after Consecration.

After this the Arch-Bishop sent forth his Mandate to all his Suffragans not only to prohibit the preaching of that Doctrine, but to inquire after those who did it. And June 12. Robert Rygge Chancellour of Oxford and Tho­mas Brightwall appeared before him and were examined upon these Propositions; which they declared to be Here­tical: who thereupon required the Publication of them as such in the University; and the proceeding against those who were suspected to favour them.

The Ground the Arch-Bishop went upon, was, that these had been already condemned by the Church, and there­fore ex abundanti, they declared them to be so con­demned; as appears by the Monition given to Robert Rygge himself as too much suspected to favour the con­trary Doctrine; as well as Nicholas Hereford, Philip Reppyndon D. D. and John Ashton B. D.

Against these the Arch-Bishop proceeded as Inquisitor Haereticae Pravitatis per totam suam Provinciam, as it is in the Record; who appearing desired a Copy of the several Propositions, and then they were required to give in their judgment upon them. Ashton refused, but the other promised, which they performed soon after; and to these two Propositions, their Answers were,

To the first that as far as it was contrary to the De­cretal, Firmiter Credimus, it was Heresie.

To the second that as far as it was contrary to the Decretal, Cum Marthoe, it was Heresie.

[Page xiv] These Answers were judged insufficient, because they did not declare what that Sense was And the Arch-Bi­shop put this Question to them, whether the same Nu­merical material Bread which before Consecration was set upon the Altar, did remain in its proper Substance and Nature after Consecration, but they would give no other Answer at that time. But afterwards Reppyndon abjured, and was made Bishop of Lincoln.

From hence it appears, that it was then thought that the Modus was so far determin'd by the Lateran Council, that the contrary Doctrine was declared not merely Er­roneous in Faith, but Heretical.

In the first Convocation held by Th. Arundel Arch-Bishop of Canterbury A. D. 1396, A Complaint was Regist. f. 47. brought, that several Divines and others of the Univer­sity of Oxford held some heretical and erroneous opinions; the first whereof was,

That the Substance of Bread doth remain after Con­fecration; and doth not cease to be Bread; which is there affirmed to be Heresie, speaking of material Bread.

The second, that the Court of Rome in the Can. Ego Berengarius, had determined that the Sacrament of the Eucharist is naturally true Bread.

It is very hard to say, how this came to be then ac­counted Heretical Doctrine, when no less a man than Durandus in the same Age affirms, that the Canonists grant that the Opinion of the ceasing of the Substance was grounded on the Can. Firmiter Credimus, i. e. on the Lateran Council; but that of the remaining of the Sub­stance on that, Ego, Berengarius. But however it passed for Heretical, or at least very Erroneous Doctrine here; but the main Heresie was to hold, that the Substance remained.

[Page xv] For A. D. 1400. (as appears by the Register p. 2. f. 179.) William Sawtre alias Chatris a Parochial Priest in Lon­don, was summoned before the same Arch-Bishop in Con­vocation upon an Information of Heresie; and one of the main Articles against him was that he held the Substance of the Bread to remain in the Sacrament of the Altar after Consecration; and that it doth not cease to be Bread. Sawtre answered, that he believed, that after Consecration the Bread did remain with the Body of Christ; but it doth not cease to be simply Bread, but it remains holy and true the Bread of Life and Body of Christ. The Arch Bishop examined him chiefly upon this Article; and because he did not answer home to the point, he was condemned for a Heretick, and was the first who was burned for Heresie in England. And yet his Answer was, that he could not understand the matter; then the Arch-Bishop asked him, if he would stand to the Churches Determination; he said, he would so far as it was not contrary to the Will of God. Upon which he was decla­red an Heretick and delivered over to the Secular Power.

In the same Convocation John Purvey made an Abjura­tion of Heresie, and the first he renounced was that after Consecration in the Sacrament of the Altar, there neither is, nor can be an Accident without a Subject, and that the same Substance and Nature of Bread remained which was before.

In the Examination of William Thorp by Thomas Arundel, Arch-Bishop of Canterbury A. D. 1407. (which is not in the Register being defective, but the account is preserved from his own Copy) The Arch-Bishop decla­red, that the Church had now determined, that there abideth no Substance of Bread after Consecration in the Sacrament of the Altar. And that if he believed other­wise he did not believe as the Church believed. Thorp [Page xvi] quoted S. Augustin and Fulgentius to prove that the Sub­stance remained; and the very Mass on Christmas Day. The Arch-Bishop still pressed him with the Churches De­termination. Thorp said this was a School-nicety whe­ther Accidents could be without a Subject; no, said the Arch-Bishop, it is the Faith of the Church I go upon. Thorp replyed, it was not so for a thousand years after Christ.

In the Examination of the Lord Cobham A. D. 1412. by the same Arch-Bishop we find that he owned the Real Registr. Arundel p. 2. f. 143. Presence of Christ's Body as firmly as his Accusers; but he was condemned for Heresie, Because he held the Sub­stance of Bread to remain. For the Arch-Bishop decla­red this to be the Sense of the Church; that after Con­secration, remaineth no material Bread or Wine which were before, they being turned into Christ's very Body and Bloud. The Original words of the Arch-Bishop as they are in the Register, are these.

The faith and the determination of holy Church touching the blestfull Sacrament of the auter is this, that after the Sacramental Words ben said by a Prest in his Masse, the material bred that was before is tur­ned into Christ's veray body. And the material Wyn that was before is turned into Christ veray blode, and so there leweth in the auter, no material brede ne ma­terial Wyn the wich wer ther byfore the saying of the Sacramental words.

And the Bishops afterwards stood up and said; It is ma­nifest Heresie to say that it is Bread after the Sacramen­tal Words be spoken; because it was against the Deter­mination of holy Church.

But to make all sure, not many years after, May 4th. A. D. 1415. the Council of Constance Session 8. declared the two Propositions before mentioned to be heretical; [Page xvii] viz. to hold that the Substance doth remain after Conse­cration, and that the Accidents do not remain without a Subject.

Let any impartial Reader now judge, whether it be any fatal Oversight to assert, that the Modus of the Real Presence was determin'd by the Council of Trent, when there were so many leading Determinations to it, which were generally owned and received in the Church of Rome. But there were other Disputes remaining in the Schools relating to this Matter; which we do not pretend were ever determin'd by the Council of Trent. As,

(1.) Whether the Words of Consecration are to be un­derstood in a Speculative or Practical Sense? For, the Scotists say, in the former Sense, they do by no means prove Transubstantiation; since it may be truly said This is my Body, though the Substance of Bread do remain; and that they are to be understood in a Practical Sense, i. e. for converting the Bread into the Body, is not to be deduced ex vi verborum, from the mere force of the Words, but from the Sense of the Church which hath so understood them. Which in plain terms is to say, it can­not be proved from Scripture, but from the Sense of the Church; and so Scotus doth acknowledge, but then he adds, that we are to judge this to be the Sense of Scrip­ture, because the Church hath declared it. Which he doth not think was done before the Council of Lateran. So that, this Council must be believed to have had as In­fallible a Spirit in giving this Sense of Scripture as there was in the writing of it; since it is not drawn from the Words, but added to them. On the other side, the Tho­mists insist on the force of the Words themselves; for, if, say they, from the Words be infer'd that there is a Real Presence of the Substance of Christ's Body, then it follows [Page xviii] thence, that there is no Substance of the Bread remaining; for a Substance cannot be where it was not before, but it must either change its place, or another must be turned in­to it; as Fire in a House must either be brought thither, or some other thing must be turned into Fire; but, say they, the Body of Christ cannot be brought from Heaven thither, for then it must leave the place it had there; and must pass through all the Bodies between; and it is impossible for the same Body to be Locally present in seve­ral places; and therefore the Body of Christ cannot other­wise be really and substantially present, but by the Conver­sion of the Substance of the Bread into it.

(2.) In what Manner the Body of Christ is made to be present in the Sacrament? The Scotists say, it is impossi­ble to conceive it otherwise than by bringing it from the place where it already is; the Thomists say that is im­possible, since that Body must be divided from it self by so many other Bodies interposing. The former is said to be an adductive Conversion, the latter a productive; but then here lies another difficulty, how there can be a pro­ductive Conversion of a thing already in being. But my business is not to give an account of these School-Disputes; but to shew how different they were from the point of Tran­fubslantiation; and that both these disputing Parties did agree that the Modus of the Real Presence was defined to be by changing the Substance of the Elements into the Body and Blood of Christ; but they still warmly disputed about the Modus of that Modus; viz. how a Body al­ready in being could be present in so many places without leaving that Place where it was already. And no Man who hath ever look'd into these School Disputes can ever ima­gine that they disputed about the Truth of the Doctrine of Transubstantiation, but only about the manner of explain­ing [Page xix] it. Wherein they do effectually overthrow each others Notions without being able to establish their own; as the Elector of Cologn truly observed of their Debates about this matter in the Council of Trent.

VI. Where the Sense of Words hath been changed by the introducing new Doctrine, there the words ought to be understood according to the Doctrine at that time received. Of this we have two remarkable Instances in the Council of Trent;

The first is about Indulgences, which that Council in its last Session never went about to define; but made use of the old Word, and so declares both Scripture and Antiqui­ty for the use of them. But there had been a mighty change in the Doctrine about them, since the Word was used in the Christian Church. No doubt there was a Power in the Church to relax Canonical Penances in extraordinary Cases; but what could that signifie when the Canonical Discipline was laid aside, and a new Method of dealing with Penitents was taken up, and another Trade driven with Respect to Purgatory Pains? For here was a new thing carried on under an old Name. And that hath been the great Artifice of the Roman Church; where it hath evidently gone off from the old Doctrines, yet to retain the old Names, that the unwary might still think, the things were the same, because the Names were. As in the present Case, we deny not the use of Indulgences in the Primitive Church; as the Word was used for Relaxations of the Canonical Discipline; but we utterly deny it as to the Pains of Purgatory. And that this was the Sense then receiv'd in the Church of Rome, appears from the Papal Constitutions of Bon face the 8th, Clemens the 6th, and Leo the 10th. But of these more hereafter.

[Page xx] The other Instance is in the Word Species used by the Council of Trent, Sess. 13. Can. 2. where an Anathema is denounced against him that denies the Conversion of the whole Substance of the Elements into the Body and Blood of Christ, the Species of Bread and Wine only remaining. Now a Controversie hath been started in the Church of Rome, what is to be understood by Species, whether real Accidents or only Appearances.

Some of the Church of Rome who have had a Tast of the New Philosophy, reject any real Accidents, and yet declare Transubstantiation to be a matter of Faith, and go about to explain the Notion of it in another manner. Among these one Emanuel Maignan, a Professor of Divi­nity Maignan Phi­losophia Sa­ [...]ra. Part 2. Append. 5. at Tholouse, hath at large undertaken this matter. The Method he takes is this.

(1.) He grants, that nothing remains of the Bread af­ter Consecration, but that whereby it was an Object of Sense; because that which is really the Being of one thing cannot be the Being of another. And he confesses that the Modus as to the not being of the Substance after Conse­cration, is determin'd by the Councils of Constance and Trent.

(2.) He asserts, that real Accidents, supposing them se­parable from the Substance, are not that whereby the Ele­ments are made the Objects of Sense; because they do not make the Conjunction between the Object and the Fa­culty.

(3.) Since he denies, that Accidents have any real Be­ing distinct from the Substance they are in, he grants, that it is as much a matter of Faith, that there are no real Accidents after Consecration, as that there is no real Sub­stance; and he brings the Authorities of the Councils of Lateran, Florence and Trent to prove it.

[Page xxi] (4.) As the Substance did by Divine Concourse so Act upon the Senses before, as to make it be an Object of Sense; so after Consecration, God by his immediate Act makes the same Appearances, although the Substance be gone. And this, he saith, is the effect of this Miraculous Conversion, which is concealed from our Senses, by God's immediate cau­sing the very same Appearances, which came before from the Substance. Which Appearances, he saith, are the Spe­cies mention'd by the Council of Trent; and other elder Councils and Fathers.

Against this new Hypothesis, a famous Jesuit, Theo­philus Raynaudus, opposed himself with great vehemency; and urged these Arguments against it.

(1.) That it overthrows the very Nature of a Sacra­ment, leaving no external visible sign; but a perpetual il­lusion of the Senses, in such a manner, that the Error of one cannot be corrected by another.

(2.) That it overthrows the Design of the Sacrament, which is to be true and proper Food. My Flesh is meat indeed, &c. John 6. Which, he saith, is to be under­stood of the Sacrament, as well as of the Body of Christ, and therefore cannot agree with an imaginary appea­rance.

(3.) It is not consistent with the Accidents which befall the Sacramental Species, as to be trod under foot, to be cast into indecent places, to be devoured by Brutes, to be Putrified, &c. If the Body of Christ withdraws, there must be something beyond mere Appearances.

(4.) He makes this Doctrine to be Heretical, because the Council of Constance condemned it as an Heretical Proposition, to affirm, that in the Eucharist Accidents do not remain without their Subject; and because the Council of Trent uses the Word Species in the Sense [Page xxii] then generally received, and so it signified the same with Accidents. Which, saith he, farther appears, because the Council speaks of the Species remaining; but if there be no real Accidents, the Species doth not remain in the Object; but a new Appearance is produced. And it seems most reasonable to interpret the Language of the Council according to the general Sense wherein the Words were understood at that time.

VII. What things were disputed and opposed by some in the Council, without being censured for it, although they were afterwards decreed by a Major Party, yet cannot be said to have been there received by a Catholick Traditi­on. Because Matters of Faith which have been univer­sally received in the Church, can never be supposed to be contested in a Council without Censure; but if it appears that there were Heats and warm Debates among the Par­ties in the Council it self, and both think they speak the Sense of the Catholick Church; then we must either al­low that there was then no known Catholick Tradition about those matters, or that the Divines of the Church of Rome assembled in Council did not understand what it was. And what happens to be decreed by a Majority, can never be concluded from thence to have been the Traditi­on before, because there was a different Sense of others concerning it. And since in a division, a single Person may make a Majority, it will be very hard to believe, that he carries Infallibility and Catholick Tradition along with him.

But I think it Reasonable in the enquiry after Catho­lick Tradition to take notice of the different Opinions in the Council; and among the School-men before it; and not only to observe, what was the Sense of the Roman [Page xxiii] Church, but of the Eastern Churches too; and where the matter requires it, to go through the several Ages of the Church up to the Apostolical Times; that I may ef­fectually prove, that in the main Points in Controversie be­tween us, which are established by the Council of Trent, there cannot be produced any Catholick and Apostolical Tradition for them.


SOme Postulata about Catholick Tradition, Page 1.

I. Point examined about Traditions being a Rule of Faith equal with Scriptures, 2.
  • The Sense of the Council of Trent concerning it, 3.
  • No. Catholick Tradition for it shew'd from the diffe­rences about it in the Council, 4.
  • From the Divines of the Roman Church for some Ages before the Council, 5.
  • The Testimonies of the Canon Law against it, 17.
  • Of the Ancient Offices of the Roman Church, 20.
  • Of the Fathers, 21.
  • The first step of Traditions being set up as a Rule by the second Council of Nice, 26.
  • Not receiv'd as a Rule of Faith till after the Coun­cil of Lateran under Innocent III. 27.
  • The occasion of it set down from new Points of Faith there determin'd, 28.
  • Never established for a Rule till the Council of Trent, 29.
II. About the Canon of Scripture defined by the Coun­cil of Trent, 30.
  • The Sense of the Council, ibid.
  • [Page] The difference there about it, 31.
  • A constant Tradition against it in the Eastern Church. 33.
  • No Catholick Tradition for it in the Western Church, 35.
  • The several steps as to the Alteration of the Canon set down, 38.
  • The different meaning of Apocryphal Writings, 40.
III. About the free use of the Scripture in the vulgar Language prohibited by the Council of Trent, 43.
  • The Sense of the Council, ibid.
  • No Catholick Tradition about this proved from the Writers of the Roman Church, 44.
  • The General Consent of the Catholick Church against it proved from the Ancient Translations into Valgar Languages, 46.
  • The first Occasion of the Scriptures being in an un­known Language, 52.
  • The first prohibition by Gregory VII. 56.
  • Continued by the Inquisition after Innocent III. 58.
IV. About the Merit of Good Works, 59.
  • The Sense of true Merit cleared from the Divines of the Church of Rome, ibid.
  • No Catholick Tradition for it proved from ancient Offices, 61.
  • From Provincial Councils and eminent Divines in several Ages before the Council of Trent, 63.
  • The several steps how the Doctrine of Merit came in, 68.
V. Of the number of Sacraments, 74.
  • An appeal to Tradition for 500. years for Seven Sa­craments [Page] examin'd and disprov'd, 75.
  • As to Chrism, 77.
  • As to Drders, 80.
  • As to Penance, 85.
  • As to Extreme-Unction, 92.
  • As to Patrimony, 97.
  • The sense of the Greek Church about the Seven Sa­craments, 102.
  • The Sense of other Eastern Churches, 110.
  • When the number of Seven Sacraments came first in, 112.
  • The particular occasions of them, 116.
VI. Of Auricular Confession, 117.
  • No Catholick Tradition confessed by their own Wri­ters, 118.
  • >The several steps and Occasions of introducing it, at large set down, 127.
  • The difference between the ancient Discipline and Modern Confession, 128.
  • Of voluntary Confession, 133.
  • Of the Penitentiaries Office, 135.
  • Publick Discipline not taken away at Constantino­ple when the Penitentiary was removed, 136.
  • Proved from S. Chrysostom, 140.
  • Publick Penance for publick Sins, 142.
  • Private Confession came in upon the decay of the An­cient Discipline, 144.


THere are Two things designed by me in this Trea­tise,

1. To shew that there is no such thing as uni­versal Tradition for the main Points in Contro­versie between us and the Church of Rome, as they are determined by the Council of Trent.

2. To give an Account by what Steps and Degrees, and on what Occasion those Doctrines and Practices came into the Church.

But before I come to particulars, I shall lay down some reasonable Postulata.

1. That a Catholick Tradition must be universally recei­ved among the sound Members of the Catholick Church.

2. That the force of Tradition lies in the Certainty of Conveyance of Matters of Faith from the Apostolical Times. For no New Doctrines being pretended to, there [Page 2] can be no Matter of Faith in any Age of the Church, but what was so in the precedent and so up to the Apostles times.

3. That it is impossible to suppose the Divines of the Catholick Church to be ignorant, what was in their own time received for Catholick Tradition. For, if it be so hard for others to mistake it, it will be much more so for those whose business is to enquire into, and to deliver Matters of Faith.

These things premised, I now enter upon the Points themselves; and I begin with,

I. Traditions being a Rule of Faith equal with Scriptures.

This is declared by the Council of Trent, as the Groundwork of their Proceedings.

The words are Sess. 4. That the Coun­cil receives Traditions both as to Faith Necnon Traditiones ipsas tum ad [...]idem tum ad mores pertinentes, tan­quam vel ore tenns â Christo vel à Spiritu sancto dictatas & continuâ successione in Ecclesia Catholica con­servatas, pari pietatis affectu ac re­ [...]erentià suscipit & veneratur. and manners, either delivered by Christ himself with his own mouth, or dictated by the Holy Ghost, and preserved in the Catholick Church by a continual Succession with equal Piety of Affection and Reve­rence as the Proofs of holy Scripture.

Where the Council first supposes there are such Tradi­tions from Christ and the Holy Ghost distinct from Scrip­ture which relate to Faith; and then it declares equal Re­spect and Veneration due to them. No one questions but the Word of Christ and Dictates of the Holy Ghost deserve equal Respect, howsoever conveyed to us; But the Point is, whether there was a Catholick Tradition before this time [Page 3] for an unwritten Word, as a Foundation of Faith, toge­ther with the written Word.

1. It is therefore impertinent here to talk of a Traditi­on before the written Word; for our Debate is concerning both being joined together to make a perfect Rule of Faith: and yet this is one of the common Pleas on behalf of Tradition.

2. It is likewise impertinent to talk of that Tradition whereby we do receive the written Word. For the Coun­cil first supposes the written Word to be received and em­braced as the Word of God, before it mentions the unwrit­ten Word; and therefore, it cannot be understood con­cerning that Tradition whereby we receive the Scrip­tures. And the Council affirms, That the Truth of the Gospel is contained partly in Books that are written, and partly in unwritten Traditions. By the Truth of the Gos­pel they cannot mean the Scriptures being the Word of God, but that the word was contained partly in Scrip­ture and partly in Tradition; and it is therefore imperti­nent to urge the Tradition for Scripture to prove Tradi­tion to be part of the Rule of Faith, as it is here owned by the Council of Trent.

3. The Council doth not here speak of a Traditionary sense of Scripture, but of a distinct Rule of Faith from the Scripture. For of that it speaks afterwards in the Decree about the use of the Scripture; where it saith, no man ought to interpret Scripture against the Sense of the Church to whom it belongs to judge of the true Sense and Meaning of Scripture, nor against the unanimous Consent of the Fathers. Whereby it is evident, the Council is not to be understood of any Consequences drawn out of Scripture concerning things not expresly contained in it; but it clearly means an unwritten Word distinct from the written, and not contained in it, which, together with [Page 4] that, makes up a Complete Rule of Faith. This being the true sense of the Council, I now shew that there was no Catholick Tradition for it.

Which I shall prove by these steps:

  • 1. From the Proceedings of the Council it self.
  • 2. From the Testimony of the Divines of that Church before the Council for several Centuries.
  • 3. From the Canon Law received and allowed in the Church of Rome.
  • 4. From the ancient Offices used in that Church.
  • 5. From the Testimony of the Fathers.

1. From the Proceedings of the Council about this matter.

By the Postulata it appears, that the Catholick Tradition is such as must be known by the sound members of the Church, and especially of the Divines in it. But it ap­pears by the most allowed Histories of that Council, this Rule of Faith was not so received there. For Cardinal Pallavicini tells us that it was warmly debated and can­vassed even by the Bishops themselves. The Bishop of Fano (Bertanus) urged against it, that God had not given Hist. Concil. Trident. l. 6. c. 14. n. 3. equal firmness to Tradition as he had done to Scripture, since several Traditions had failed. But the Bishop of Bi­tonto (Mussus) opposed him and said, Though all Truths were not to be equally regarded, yet every word of God ought, and Traditions as well as Scripture were the word of God, and the first Principles of Faith; and the greater part of the Council followed him. It seems then there was a division in the Council about it; but how could that be if there were a Catholick Tradition about this Rule of Faith? Could the Bishops of the Catholick Church, when assembled in Council to determine Matters of Faith, [Page 5] be no better agreed about the Rule of Faith; and yet must we believe there was at that time a known Catho­lick Tradition about it, and that it was impossible they should err about such a Tradition? Nay farther, the same Authour tells us, that although this Bishop had gai­ned the greatest part of the Council to him, yet his own heart misgave him, and in the next Congregation him­self proposed, that instead of equal it might be put a like Veneration; and yet we must believe there was a Catho­lick Tradition for an Equal Veneration to Scripture and Tradition. But the Bishop of Chioza, (Naclantus) he saith, inveighed more bitterly against this Equality, and in the face of the Council charged the Doctrine with Impie­ty; N. 4. and he would not allow any Divine Inspiration to Tradition, but that they were to be considered onely as Laws of the Church. It's true, he saith he professed to consent to the Decree afterwards, but withall he tells us, that he was brought under the Inquisition not long after, upon suspicion of Heresie; which shews they were not well satisfied with his submission. We are extremely be­holden to Cardinal Pallavicini for his Information in these matters, which are past over too jejunely by F. Paul.

2. I proceed to the Testimony of the Divines of the Roman Church before the Council of Trent. It is ob­served by some of them, that when the Fathers appealed to the Tradition of the Church in any controverted Point of Faith, they made their Appeal to those who wrote be­fore the Controversie was started; as S. Augustin did a­gainst the Pelagians, &c. This is a reasonable Method Aug. l. 2. c. Julian. of proceeding, in case Tradition be a Rule of Faith: and therefore must be so even in this point, whether Traditi­on be such a Rule or not. For the Divines who wrote before could not be ignorant of the Rule of Faith they re­ceived among themselves.

[Page 6] Gabriel Biel lived in the latter end of the 15th Century, and he affirms, that the Scripture alone teaches all things ne­cessary Et caetera nostrae saluti necessaria, quae omnia sola docet sacra Scriptu­ra. Lection. in Canon. Missae 71. to salvation; and he instances in the things to be done and to be avoided, to be loved and to be despised, to be believed and to be hoped for. And again, that the Haec autem in sacris Scripturis discuntur, per quas solas plenam in­telligere possumus Dei voluntatem. ib. Will of God is to be understood by the Scriptures, and by them alone we know the whole Will of God. If the whole Will of God were to be known by the Scripture, how could part of it be preserved in an unwritten Tradition? And if this were then part of the Rule of Faith, how could such a Man, who was Professour of Divinity at Tubing be ig­norant of it? I know he saith he took the main of his Book from the Lectures of Eggelingus, in the Cathedral Church at Mentz; but this adds greater strength to the Argument, since it appears hereby that this Doctrine was not confined to the Schools, but openly delivered in one of the most famous Churches of Germany.

Cajetan died not above 12 Years before the Council, who agrees with this Doctrine of Biel or Eggelingus (and he was accounted the Oracle of his time for Divinity) for he affirms that the Scripture gives such a perfection to a Man of God (or one that E [...]e quo tendit utilitas divinae Scripturae ad perfectionem hominis Dei (hoc est qui totum seipsum Deo dat) perfectionem inquam ta­ [...]em ut sit perfectus ad omne bonum exercendum. In 2. ad Tim. 3. 16. devoutly serves him) that thereby he is accomplished for every good Work; How can this be, if there be another Rule of Faith quite distinct from the Written Word?

Bellarmin indeed grants, that all things which are simply necessary to the Salvation of all, are plainly contained in Scripture, by which he yields, that the Scripture alone is the Rule of Faith as to necessary points; and he [Page 7] calls the Scripture the certain and stable Rule of Faith, yea the most certain and most secure Rule. If there be then Dico i [...]a omnia Scripta esse ab Apo­stolis quae sunt [...]mnibus ne­cessaria, & quae ipsi pa­lam omnibus vulgò praedi­caverunt. Bellarm. de verbo Dei. l. 4. c. 11. Illud imprimis statuendum erit Propheticos & Apostolicos libros juxta mentem Ecclesiae Ca­tholicae verum esse verbum Dei & certam ac stabilem Regulam fidei. Id. l. 1. c. 1. At sacris Scripturis quae Propheticis & Apostolicis literis continentur, nihil est notius, nihil certius. Id. c. 2. Quare cum Sacra Scriptura Regula credendi certissima tutissimáque sit. Ibid. any other, it must be less certain and about points not necessary to Salvation; i. e. it must be a Rule where there is no need of a Rule. For if Mens Salvation be suf­ficiently provided for, by the Written Rule; and the Divine Revelation, be in Order to mens Salvation, what need any other Revelation to the Church, besides what is Written?

He asserts farther, that nothing is de fide, but what God L. 4. c. 9. hath revealed to the Prophets and Apostles, or is deduced from thence. This he brings to prove that whatsoever was received as a matter of Faith in the Church, which is not found in Scripture must have come from an Apostolical Tradition. But if it be necessary to Salvation, according to his own Concession it must be written; and if it be not, how comes it to be received as a matter of Faith? unless it be first proved, that it is necessary to Salvation to receive an unwritten Rule of Faith, as well as a written? For, either it must be necessary on its own Account, and then he saith it must be written; and if not, then it can be no otherwise necessary than because it is to be believed on the Account of a Rule, which makes it necessary. And consequently that Rule must be first proved to be a ne­cessary Article of Faith: Which Bellarmin hath no where done; but onely sets down Rules about knowing true Apostolical Traditions from others in matters of Faith, wherein he wisely supposes that which he was to prove.

[Page 8] And the true Occasion of setting up this new Rule of Faith is intimated by Bellarmin himself in his first Rule of judging true Apostolical Traditions. Which is, when the Church believes any thing as a Doctrine of Faith which is not in Scripture, then saith he, we must judge it to be an Apostolical Tradition. Why so? Otherwise the Church must have erred in taking that for a matter of Faith which was not. And this is the great Secret about this New Rule of Faith; they saw plainly several things were imposed on the Faith of Christians, which could not be proved from Scripture; and they must not yield they had once mistaken, and therefore this New, Additional Less certain Rule for unnecessary Points must be advanced, although they wanted Tradition among themselves to prove Tradition a Rule of Faith, which I shall now farther make appear from their own School Divines before the Council of Trent.

We are to observe among them what those are which they strictly call Theological Truths, and by them we shall judge, what they made the Rule of Faith. For, they do not make a bare Revelation to any Person a sufficient Ground for Faith; but they say Et quantum ad ea quae pro [...]onantur omnibus cre­denda quae per [...]inent ad fiaem. 2. 2. q. 171. prol. the Revelation must be publick, and designed for the general Benefit of the Church; and so Aquinas determines 1. q. 1. a. 5. that our Faith rests onely upon the Revelations made to the Prophets and Apostles; and Theological Truths are such as are immediately deduced from the Principles of Faith, i. e. from publick Divine Re­velations owned and received by the Church. The modern School men, Melch. Can. l. 12. c. 3. who follow the Council of Trent make Theological Truths to be deduced from the unwritten as well as the Written word; or else they would not speak consonantly to their own Doctrine. And therefore if those before them deduce Theological Truths onely from the Written Word, then it will follow that they did not [Page 9] hold the unwritten Word to be a Rule of Faith.

Marsilius ab Inghen was first Professor of Divinity of Heidelberg (at the latter end of the 15th Century saith Bellarmin, but Trithemius saith the 14th) and he deter­mines, that a Theological Proposition is that which is posi­tively Marsil. in 4. lib. Sentent. l. 1. Prooem. q. 2. art. 2. asserted in Scripture or deduced from thence by good Consequence; and that a Theological Truth strictly taken is the Truth of an Article of Faith, or something expressed in the Bible, or deduced from thence. He mentions Apostoli­cal Traditions afterwards, and joins them with Ecclesia­stical Histories and Martyrologies. So far was he from sup­posing them to be part of the Rule of Faith.

In the beginning of the 15th Century lived Petrus de Alliaco, one as famous for his skill in Divinity, as for his Pet. de Alli [...] ­co in Sent. l. 1. q. 1. a. 3. Dignity in the Church, He saith, that Theological Dis­course is founded on Scripture, and a Theological Proof must be drawn from thence; that Theological Principles are the Truths contained in the Canon of Scripture; and Con­clusions are such as are drawn out of what is contained in Scripture. So that he not onely makes the Scripture the Foundation of Faith, but of all sorts of true Reasoning a­bout it. He knew nothing of Cardinal Palavicini's two first Principles of Faith.

To the same purpose speaks Gregorius Ariminensis, a­bout the middle of the 14th Century he saith, all Theo­logical Greg. Ari­min. q. 1. a. 2. Discourse is grounded on Scripture and the Conse­quences from it; which he not onely proves from Testi­mony, but ex communi omnium conceptione, from the ge­neral Consent of Christians. For, saith he, all are agreed that then a thing is proved Theologically, when it is proved from the Words of Scripture. So that here we have plain Tradition, against Traditions being a distinct Rule of Faith, and this delivered by the General of an Order in the Church of Rome. He affirms that the Principles of Theo­logy, [Page 10] are no other than the Truths contained in the Ca­non of Scripture; and that the Resolution of all Theological Discourse is into them; and that there can be no Theo­logical Conclusion, but what is drawn from Scripture.

In the former part of that Century lived Darandus, Durand. Prol. Q. 5. n. 9. he gives a threesold Sense of Theology. 1. For a habit whereby we assent to those things which are contained in Scripture, as they are there delivered. 2. For a habit whereby those things are [...]efended and declared which are delivered in Scripture. 3. For a habit of those things a. 13. which are deduced out of Articles of Faith; and so it is all one with the holy Scripture. n. 21.

And in another place he affirms, that all Truth is con­tained in the Holy Scripture at large; but for the People's L. 3. Dist. 25. q. 2. Conveniency the necessary Points are summed up in the Apostles Creed.

In his Preface before his Book on the Sentences he highly commends the Scriptures for their Dignity, their Usefulness, their Certainty, their Depth; and after all concludes, that in matters of Faith men ought to speak agreeably to the Scriptures; and whosoever doth not, breaks the Rule of the Scriptures, which he calls the Measure of our Faith. What Tradition did appear then for another Rule of Faith in the 14th Century?

But before I proceed higher I shall shew the Consent of others with these School Divines in the three last Centuries before the Council of Trent. In the middle of the 15th lived Nicholaus Panormitanus, one of mighty Re­putation for his skill in the Canon Law. In the Ch. Signi­ficâsti prima. 1. de Electione, debating the Authority of Pope and Council, he saith, Nam in concernentibus fidem eti­am dictum unius privati esset pra­ [...]erendum dicto Papae si ille movere­ [...]ur melioribus rationibus novi & veteris Testamenti quam Papae. If the Pope hath better Reason his Au­thority is greater than the Councils; and if any private person in matters of Faith [Page 11] hath better Reason out of Scripture than the Pope, his say­ing is to be preferred above the Pope's. Which words do plainly shew, that the Scripture was then looked on as the onely Rule of Faith; or else no Man's grounding him­self on Scripture could make his Doctrine to be preferred before the Pope's; who might alledge Tradition against him, and if that were an equal Rule of Faith, the Doc­trine of one Rule could not be preferred before the other.

At the same time lived Tostatus the famous Bishop of Avila, one of infinite Industry and great Judgment, and therefore could not be mistaken in the Rule of Faith. In his Preface on Genesis he saith, that there must be a Rule for our understandings to be Cùm ergo in omni veritate veri­tas divina sit certior & immutabili­or, ergo omnes aliae debent regulari per illam, & in quantum conforman­tur illi sunt verae; in quantum au­tem deviant ab illa, deviant à na­tura veritatis. Sacra autem Scrip­tura veritas divina est, ideo judici­um nostrum debemus regulare per il­lam applicando ad eam, &c. Tostat­in Ep. Hieron. c. 6. p. 28. D. regulated by, and that Rule must be most certain; that Divine Faith is the most certain; and that is contained in Scripture, and therefore we must regulate our under­standings thereby. And this he makes to be the measure of Truth and Falshood. If he knew any other Rule of Faith besides the Scriptures, he would have mentioned it in this place; and not have directed Men onely to them, as the exact measure of Truth and Falshood.

In the beginning of this Century Thomas Walden (Con­fessor to our Henry 5th, saith Trithemius,) disputed sharp­ly against Wickliff; but he durst not set up the Churches Authority or Tradition equal with the Scriptures. For when he mentions Tradition after Scriptures, he utterly disclaims any such thought as that of Equa­lity between them; but he desires a due Non quod in Auctoritate aequantur, absit; sed sequantur. Non quidem in subsidium Auctoritatis Canonicae sed in admonitionem posterorum, l. 2. Art. 2. c. 22. distance may be kept between Canonical Scripture and Ecclesiastical Authority or Tradition. In the first place he saith, we ought to believe the holy Scriptures; then [Page 12] the Definitions and Customs of the Catholick Church; but he more fully explains himself in another place, where c. 28. he plainly asserts, that nothing else is to be received by c. 27. such Faith as the Scripture and Christ's symbolical Church; but for all other Authorities, the lowest degree is that of Catholick Tradition, the next of the Bishops, especially of the Apostolical Churches, and the Roman in the first place; and above all these he places that of a General Council; but when he hath so done, he saith, all these Authorities are to be regarded but as the Instructions of Elders, and Ad­monitions of Fathers. So that the chief Opposers of Wick­liff had not yet found out this new Rule of Faith.

Much about the same time lived Joh. Gerson, whom Joh. Gerson. Exam. Doctr. p. 540. Part. 1. Cons. 5. Cardinal Zabarella declared, in the Council of Constance, to be the greatest Divine of his time, and therefore could not be ignorant of the true Rule of Faith. He agrees with Panormitan in this, that if a man be well skilled in Scrip­tures, his Doctrine deserves more to be regarded than the Pope's Declaration; for, saith he, the Gospel is more to be believed than the Pope, and if such a one teaches a Doc­trine to be contained in Scripture, which the Pope either knows not or mistakes, it is plain whose Judgment is to be pre­ferred. Nay, he goes farther, that if in a General Council he finds the Majority incline to that part which is contrary to Scripture, he is bound to oppose it, and he instances in Hi­lary. And he shews, that since the Canon of Scripture re­ceived by the Church, no Authority of the Church is to be equalled to it. He allows a Judgment of Discretion in pri­vate Cons. 6. persons, and a Certainty of the literal Sense of Scrip­ture attainable thereby. He makes the Scripture the onely standing infallible Rule Nihil audendum dicere de divi­nis nisi quae nobis à Sacra Scriptura tradita sunt. Cujus ratio est, quo­niam Scriptura nobis tradita est tan­quam Regula sufficiens & infallibi­ [...]i [...], pro Regi [...]ine totius Ecclesiasti­ci corporis & membrorum usque in finem seculi. Est igitur talis Ars, talis regula, vel exemplar, cui se non conformans alia Doctrina, vel abjicienda est ut haereticalis, aut suspecta, aut impertinens ad Reli­gionem prorsus est habenda. Exam. Doctr. Part. 2. Consid. 1. of Faith for the whole Church to the end of the world. And whatever Doctrine is not agreeable thereto, is to be rejected either [Page 13] as Heretical, suspicious, or impertinent to Religion. If the Council of Trent had gone by this Rule, we had never heard of the Creed of Pius IV.

In the beginning of the 14th Century lived Nicolaus de Lyra, who parallels the Scriptures in matters of Faith Lyra, Praesat. ad lib. Tobiae. with First-principles in Sciences; for as other Truths are tried in them by their reduction to First-principles, so in matters of Faith by their reduction to Canonical Scriptures, which are of divine Revelation, which is impossible to be false. If he had known any other Principles which would have made Faith impossible to be false, he would never have spoken thus of Scripture alone. But to return to the School Divines.

About the same time lived Joh. Duns Scotus, the head of a School, famous for Subtilty; He affirms, that the Scot. in Sen­tent. Prolog. Q. 2. n. 14. holy Scripture doth sufficiently contain all matters necessa­ry to salvation; because by it we know what we are to be­lieve, hope for, and practise. And after he hath enlarged upon them, he concludes in these words, patet quod Scrip­tura sacra sufficienter continet Doctrinam necessariam viato­ri. If this be understood onely of Points simply necessary, then however it proves, that all such things necessary to Salvation are therein contained; and no man is bound to enquire after unnecessary Points. How then can it be necessary to embrace another Rule of Faith, when all things necessary to Salvation are sufficiently contained in Scripture?

But Thomas Aquinas is more express Ea enim quae ex sola Dei volunta­te supra omne debitum Creatur [...], nobis innotescere non possunt, nisi qua­tenus in sacra Scriptura traduntur, per quam Divina voluntas nobis in­notescit. 3. q. 1. a. 3. in C. in this matter; For he saith, that those things which depend on the Will of God, and are above any desert of ours, can [Page 14] be known no otherways by us, than as they are delivered in Scriptures by the Will of God, which is made known to us.

This is so remarkable a Passage, that Suarez could not let it escape without corrupting it; for instead of Scrip­ture he makes him to speak of Divine Revelation in ge­neral, Suarez, in 3. p. 117. viz. under Scripture he comprehends all; that is, under the written Word he means the unwritten. If he had meant so, he was able to have expressed his own mind more plainly; and Cajetan apprehended no such mea­ning in his words, But this is a matter of so great con­sequence, that I shall prove from other passages in him, that he asserted the same Doctrine, viz. That the Scrip­ture was the onely Rule of Faith.

1. He makes no Proofs of matters of Faith to be sufficient but such as are de­duced Authoritatibus autem Canonicae Scripturae utitur propriè ex necessita­te argumentando; autoritatibus au­tem aliorum Doctorum Ecclesiae qua­si arguendo ex propriis sed probabi­litér. Inni [...]itur enim fides nostra Revelationi Apostolis & Prophet is factae, qui Canonicos libros scripse­runt, non autem Revelationi si qua fuit aliis Doctoribus facta. 1. q. 1. a. 8. ad 2. from Scripture; and all other Ar­guments from Authority to be onely pro­bable; nay although such Persons had par­ticular Revelations. How can this be consistent with another Rule of Faith di­stinct from Scripture? For if he had ow­ned any such, he must have deduced ne­cessary Arguments from thence, as well as from Canoni­cal Scriptures. But if all other Authorities be onely pro­bable, then they cannot make any thing necessary to be believed.

2. He affirms, that to those who re­ceive the Scriptures we are to prove no­thing Quae igitur fidei sunt non sunt ten­tanda probari nisi per Autoritates his qui Autoritates suscipiunt. 1. q. 32. a. 1. c. but by the Scriptures, as matter of Faith. For by Authorities he means no­thing but the Scriptures; as appears by the former place, and by what follows, Si autem ad veritatem eloquio­rum sc. sacrorum respicit, hoc & nos Canone utimur. Ib. where he mentions the Canon of Scripture expresly.

[Page 15] 3. He asserts that the Articles of the Creed are all contained in Scripture, and are drawn out of Scripture, and put together by the Church onely for the Ease of the People. From hence it ne­nessarily Dicendum quod veritas fidei in Sacra Scriptura diffusè contine­tur—ideó fuit necessarium ut ex sententiis Sacrae Scripturae aliquid manifestum summariè colligeretur, quod proponeretur omnibus ad cre­dendum; quod quidem non est ad­ditum Sacrae Scripturae, sed potius ex Sacra Scriptura sumptum. 2. 2. q. 1. a. 9. ad primum. follows that the Reason of be­lieving the Articles of the Creed, is to be taken from the written Word and not from any unwritten Tradition. For else he needed not to have been so carefull to shew, that they were all taken out of Scripture.

4. He distinguisheth the Matters of Faith in Scripture, some to be believed for themselves, which he calls prima Credibilia; these he saith every one is bound explicitly to believe; but for other things he is bound onely implicitly, or Quantum ad prima Credibilia, quae sunt Articuli fidei, tenetur homo explicitè credere, sicut & tenetur habere fidem. Quantum autem ad alia credibilia non tenetur homo ex­plicitè credere, sed solùm implicitè, vel in praeparatione animi in quan­tum paratus est credere quicquid Scriptura continet; sed tunc solùm hujusmodi tenetur explicitè credere, quando hoc ei constiterit in Doctrina fidei contineri. 2. 2. q. 2. a 5. c. in a preparation of mind, to believe what­ever is contained in Scripture; and then onely is he bound to believe explicitly when it is made clear to him to be con­tained in the Doctrine of Faith. Which words must imply the Scripture to be the onely Rule of Faith; for other­wise implicit Faith, must relate to what­ever is proved to be an unwritten Word.

From all this it appears that Aquinas knew nothing of a Traditional Rule of Faith; although he lived after the Lateran Council A. D. 1215. being born about nine years after it.

And Bonaventure, who died the same year with him, affirms, that nothing was Et nihil nobis dicendum est, prae­ter ea quae nobis ex Sacris Eloqui [...] claret. Bonav. in 3 Sent. Dist. 1. Art. 2. q. 2. to besaid, (about Matters of Faith) but what is made clear out of the holy Scrip­tures.

[Page 16] Not long after them lived Henricus Gandavensis; and he delivers these things which are very material to our purpose.

1. That the Reason why we believe the Guides of the Church since the Apostles, Quod autem credimus posterio­ribus circa quos non apparent virtutes divinae, hoc est, quia non praedicant alia quàm quae illi in scriptis certissimis reliquêrunt, quae constat per medios in nullo fuisse vi­tiata ex consensicne concordi in eis omnium succedentium usque ad tem­pora nostra. Hen. Gandav. Sum. A [...]t. 9. q. 3 n. 13. 2. who work no Miracles, is, because they preach nothing but what they have left in their most certain Writings, which are delivered down to us pure and uncorrupt by an universal consent of all that suc­ceeded to our times. Where we see he makes the Scriptures to be the onely Certain Rule, and that we are to judge of all other Doc­trines by them.

2. That Truth is more certainly pre­served in Scripture than in the Church; Quia veritas ipsa in Scriptura immobiliter & impermutabiliter semper cuf [...]ditur.—In personis au­tem Excclesiae mutabilis est & va­riabil [...]s ut dissentire fidei possit mul­titudo illorum, & vel per errorem, vel per malitiam à side discedere li­cet; semper Ecclesia in aliquibus ju­st [...]s stabit. Art. 8. q. 1. n. 5. because that is fixed and immutable, and men are variable, so that multitudes of them may depart from the Faith, either through Errour or Malice; but the true Church will always remain in some righ­teous persons. How then can Tradi­tion be a Rule of Faith equal with Scriptures, which depends upon the Testimony of Persons who are so ve­ry fallible?

I might carry this way of Testimony on higher still, as when Richardus de S. Victore saith, in the thirteenth Century, that every Truth is suspected by him, which is not confirmed by Holy Suspecta est mihi omnis veritas, quam non confirmat Scriptu [...]arum Auctoritas. Rich. de S. Victore, De Praepar. Animi ad Contempl. Part. 1. c. 81. Scripture; but in stead of that I shall now proceed to the Canon Law, as ha­ving more Authority than particular Testimonies.

[Page 17] 3. As to the Canon Law collected by Gratian, I do not insist upon its Confirmation by Eugenius, but upon its universal Reception in the Church of Rome. And from thence I shall evidently prove that Tradition was not al­lowed to be a Rule of Faith equal with the Scriptures.

Dist. 9. c. 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10. The Authority and In­fallibility of the holy Scripture is asserted above all other Writings whatsoever; for all other Writings are to be exa­mined, and men are to judge of them as they see cause.

Now Bellarmin tells us, that the unwritten Word is so De verbo Dei l. 4. c. 2. called, not that it always continues unwritten, but that it was so by the first Authour of it. So that the unwritten Word doth not depend on mere Oral Tradition, according to him, but it may be found in the Writers of the Church; c. 12. but the Canon Law expresly excludes all other Writings, let them contain what they will, from being admitted to any Competition with Canonical Scripture; and there­fore according to that, no part of the Rule of Faith was contained in any other than Canonical Scriptures.

Dist. 37. c. Relatum, A man is suppo­sed to have an entire and firm Rule of Cùm enim ex divinis Scripturis integram quis & firmam Regulam veritatis susceperit. Faith in the Scriptures.

Caus. 8. q. 1. c. Nec sufficere, The Scrip­tures Quibus sacris literis unica est cre­dendi pariter & vivendi Regul [...] praescripta. are said to be the onely Rule both of Faith and Life.

And the Gloss on the Canon Law there owns the Scrip­ture to be the Rule for matters of Faith; but very plea­santly applies it to the Clergy, and thinks Images enough for the Laity.

Caus. 24. q. 1. c. Non afferentes. The Scriptures are ac­knowledged to be the true Balance; and that we are not so much to weigh what we find there, as to own what we find there already weighed. Which must imply the Scripture alone to be that Measure we are to trust to.

[Page 18] Dist. 8. c. 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. It is there said, that Cu­stome must yield to Truth and Reason, when that is discove­red, and that for this Reason, because Christ said, I am Truth and not Custome. Now, if Tradition be an Infallible Rule of Faith, Custome ought always to be presumed to have Truth and Reason of its side. For, if we can once sup­pose a Custome to prevail in the Church against Truth and Reason, it is impossible that Tradition should be In­fallible; for what is that but Ancient Custome?

Caus. 11. Q. 3. c. 101. Si is qui proeest. If any one commands what God hath forbidden, or forbids what God hath commanded, he is to be accursed of all that love God. And if he requires any thing besides the Will of God, or what God hath evidently required in Scrip­ture, he is to be looked on as a false Witness of God, and a Sacrilegious Person. How can this be, if there be ano­ther infallible way of conveying the Will of God besides the Scriptures?

Caus. 24. q. 3. c. 30. c. Quid autem. In matters of doubt it is said that men are to fly to the Written word for satisfaction, Sed in han [...] insipientiam cadunt, qui cùm ad cognoscendam veritatem aliquo impediuntur obscuro, non ad Propheticas voces, non ad Apostoli­cas liter as, nec ad Evangelicas auc­ [...]oritates, sed ad seipsos recurrunt. and that it is folly not to doe it. It is true, Mens own Fancies are opposed to Scripture, but against Mens Fancies no other Rule is mentioned but that of the Written Word.

Joh. 22. Extravag. c. Quia quorundam. Tit. 14. makes his Appeal to Scripture in the Controversie then on foot about Use and Property; Dicunt nobis ubi legunt, &c. and he shews that if it were a matter of Faith, it must be con­tained in Scripture, either expresly or by reduction; otherwise the Scripture would Nec quasi hoc sacra Scriptura con­tineat, quo negato tota Scriptura sa­cra redditur dubia; & per conse­quens articuli Fidei, qui habeat per Scripturam sacram probari redd [...] ­tur dubii & incerti. be no certain Rule; and by consequence, the Articles of Faith which are proved [Page 19] by Scripture, would be rendred doubt­full and uncertain.

The Glosser there saith, Whence comes this consequence? and refers to another place; where he makes it out thus; that Faith can onely be proved by the Scripture, and there­fore if the Authority of that be destroy'd, Faith would Extrav. Joh. 22. Cum inter Gloss. per con­sequens. Turrecrem. de Ecclesia, l. 4. part. 2. c. 9. be taken away. The Roman Editors for an Anti­dote refer to Cardinal Turrecremata, who doth indeed speak of Catholick Truths, which are not to be found in the Canon of Scripture; and he quotes a passage in the Canon Law for it under the name of Alex. 3. c. cum Mar­thoe Extrav. de Celebr. Missae. but in truth it is Innoc. 3. Decretal. l. 3. Tit. 41. and yet this will not prove what he aims at; for the Question was about the Authour of the Words added in the Eucharist to those of Christ's Institution; and he pleads that many of Christ's words and actions are omitted by the Evangelists, which the Apostles afterwards set down; and he instances in Saint Paul, as to those words of Christ, It is more blessed to give than to receive; and elsewhere. But what is all this to Catholick Truths not being contained in Scrip­ture either in words or by consequence? The Cardinal was here very much to seek, when he had nothing but such a Testimony as this to produce in so weighty and so new a Doctrine. The best Argument he produces is, Turrecre [...]. l. 2. c. 18. a horrible blunder of Gratian's, where S. Augustin seems to reckon the Decretal Epistles equal with the Scrip­tures, Dist. 19. c. in Canonicis; which the Roman Cor­rectors were ashamed of, and consess that S. Augustin speaks onely of Canonical Epistles in Scripture. So hard must they strain, who among Christians would set up any other Rule equal with the Written Word.

4. I proceed to prove this from the ancient Offices of the Roman Church.

[Page 20] In the Office produced by Morinus out of the Vatican MS. which he saith was very ancient; the Bishop before Morin. de Ordinat. Sa­cris, p. 275. his Consecration was asked, If he would accommodate all his prudence, to the best of his skill, to the Sense of Holy Scripture?

Resp. Yes, I will with all my heart consent, and obey it in all things.

Inter. Wilt thou teach the People by Word and Ex­ample, the things which thou learnest out of holy Scrip­tures?

Resp. I will.

And then immediately follows the Examen about Manners.

In another old Office of S. Victor's, there are the same Morin p. 333. Questions in the same manner.

And so in another of the Church of Rouen lately pro­duced by Mabillon, which he saith was about William Mabillon A. nalect. To. 2. p. 468. the Conquerour's time, there is not a word about Tra­ditions; which crept into the Ordo Romanus, and from thence hath been continued in the Roman Pontificals. But it is observable, that the Ordo Romanus owns that the Examen was originally taken out of the Gallican Of­fices, (although it does not appear in those imperfect ones lately published at Rome by Th [...]masius) and there­fore we may justly suspect that the additional Questions about Traditions were the Roman Interpolations, after it came to be used in that Pontifical.

And the first Office in Morinus was the true ancient Gallican Office. But if Tradition had been then owned as a Rule of Faith, it ought no more to have been omit­ted in the ancient Offices than in the modern.

And the ancient Writers about Ecclesiastical Offices speak very agreeably to the most ancient Offices about this matter. Amalarius saith the Gospel is the Fountain Amalarius de Offi [...]i [...]s, l. 3. c. 5. of Wisedom; and that the Preachers ought to prove the [Page 21] Evangelical Truth out of the sacred Books. Isidore, that we ought to think nothing (as to matters of Faith) Isidor. de Of­fic. l. 2. c. 23. but what is contained in the two Testaments. Rabanus Maurus, that the knowledge of the Scriptures is the foun­dation Rab. Maur. de Inst. Cler. l. 3. c. 2. l. 2. c. 53. and perfection of Prudence, That Truth and Wise­dom are to be tried by them; and the perfect instructi­on of Life is contained in them. Our Venerable Bede agrees with them, when he saith, that the true Teachers Bed. in Cant. l. 5. De Taberna­culo l. 1. c. 6. take out of the Scriptures of the old and new Testament that which they preach: and therefore have their minds imploy'd in finding out the true meaning of them.

5. I now come to the Fathers; wherein I am in great Vindic. of the Answ. to some late Papers. measure prevented by a late Discourse, wherein it is at large shewed that the Fathers made use of no other Rule but the Scriptures for deciding Controversies; therefore I shall take another method, which is to shew that those who do speak most advantageously of Tradition, did not intend to set up another Rule of Faith distinct from Scripture.

And here I shall pass over all those Testimonies of Fa­thers which speak either of Tradition before the Canon of Scripture, or to those who did not receive it, or of the Tradition of Scripture it self, or of some Rites and Cu­stoms of the Church, as wholly impertinent. And when these are cut off, there remain scarce any to be conside­red, besides that of Vincentius Lerinensis, and one Te­stimony of S. Basil.

I begin with Vincentius Lerinensis, who by some is thought so great a Favourer of Tradition; but he saith not a word of it as a Rule of Faith distinct from Scrip­ture; Commonit. 1. c. 2. Cùm sit per­fectus Scrip­turarum Ca­non sibi (que) ad omnia satis supér (que) suffi­ciat. for he asserts the Canon of Scripture to be sufficient of it self for all things. How can that be, if Tradition be a Rule of Faith distinct from it? He makes indeed Catholick Tradition the best Interpreter of Scripture; [Page 22] and we have no reason to decline it in the Points in dis­pute between us, if Vincentius his Rules be follow'd.

1. If Antiquity, Universality and Consent be joyned.

2. If the difference be observed between old Errours and new ones. For, saith he, when they had length of c. 39. time, Truth is more easily concealed, by those who are concerned to suppress it. And in those Cases we have no other way to deal with them, but by Scripture and ancient Councils. And this is the Rule we profess to hold to.

But to suppose any one part of the Church to assume to it self the Title of Catholick, and then to determine what is to be held for Catholick Tradition by all Mem­bers of the Catholick Church, is a thing in it self unrea­sonable, and leaves that part under an impossibility of being reclaimed. For in case the Corrupt Part be judge, we may be sure no Corruptions will be ever owned. Vin­centius grants that Arianism had once extremely the ad­vantage c. 6. in Point of Universality, and had many Coun­cils of its side; if now the prevailing Party be to judge of Catholick Tradition, and all are bound to submit to its Decrees without farther Examination, as the Authour of the Guide in Controversies saith upon these Rules of Of the Necessi­ty of Church-Guides p. 201. Vincentius; then I say all men were then bound to de­clare themselves Arians. For if the Guides of the present Church are to be trusted and relied upon for the Doctrine of the Apostolical Church downwards; how was it possible for any Members of the Church then to oppose Aria­nism, and to reform the Church after its prevalency? To say it was condemned by a former Council, doth by no means clear the difficulty; For the present Guides must be p. 199. trusted, whether they were rightly condemned or not; and nothing can be more certain, than that they would be sure to condemn those who condemned them. But [Page 23] Vincentius saith, Every true Lover of Christ preferred the ancient Faith before the novel betraying of it; but then he must chuse this ancient Faith against the judgment of the present Guides of the Church. And therefore that, according to Vincentius, can be no Infallible Rule of Faith.

But whether the present Universality dissents from An­tiquity, whose Judgment should be sooner taken than its own? saith the same Authour, This had been an excel­lent Argument in the mouth of Ursacius or Valens at the Council of Ariminum; and I do not see what Answer the Guide in Controversies could have made. But both are Parties, and is not the Councils Judgment to be taken rather than a few Opposers? So that, for all that I can find by these Principles, Arianism having the greater number, had hard luck not to be established as the Catholick Faith. But if in that case, particular Persons were to judge between the New and the Old Faith, then the same Reason will still hold, unless the Guides of the Church have obtained a new Patent of Infallibility since that time.

The great Question among us, is, Where the true an­cient Faith is; and how we may come to find it out? We are willing to follow the ancient Rules in this mat­ter. The Scripture is allowed to be an Infallible Rule on all hands; and I am proving that Tradition was not al­lowed in the ancient Church as distinct from it. But the present Question is, how far Tradition is to be allowed in giving the Sense of Scripture between us. Vincentius saith, we ought to follow it when there is Antiquity, Uni­versality and Consent: This we are willing to be tryed by. But here comes another Question, Who is to be Judge of these? The present Guides of the Catholick Church? To what purpose then are all those Rules? Will they condemn [Page 24] themselves? Or, as the Guide admirably saith, If the present Universality be its own Judge, when can we think p. 199. it will witness its departure from the true Faith? And if it will not, what a Case is the Church in, under such a pretended Universality?

The utmost use I can suppose then, Vincentius his Rules can be of to us now, is in that Case which he puts when Corruptions and Errours have had time to take root and fasten themselves; and that is, By an Appeal to Scripture and Ancient Councils. But because of the charge of Innovation upon us, we are content to be tried by his second Rule. By the Consent of the Fathers of greatest Re­putation, who are agreed on all hands to have lived and di­ed in the Communion of the Catholick Church: and what they delivered freely, constantly and unanimously, let that be taken for the undoubted and certain Rule in judging be­tween us. But if the present Guides must come in to be Judges here again, then all our labour is lost, and Vincen­tius his Rules signifie just nothing,

The Testimony of S. Basil is by Mr. White magnified Tabulae Suf­ [...]ragial. p. 54. above the rest, and that out of his Book de Spiritu Sancto above all others, to prove that the Certainty of Faith depends on Tradition; and not merely on Scripture. The force of it is said to lye in this, that the practice of the Church, in saying, with the holy Spirit, though not found in Scripture is to determine the Sense of the Article of Faith about the Divinity of the Holy Ghost. But to clear this place, we are to observe,

1. That S. Basil doth not insist on Tradition for the Proof of the Article of Faith, for he expresly disowns it in that Book; It is not enough, saith he, that we have it by Tradition from our [...]De Sp. Sancto c. 7. Fathers; for our Fathers had it from the Will of God in Scripture, as appears by [Page 25] those Testimonies I have set down already, which they took for their Foundations. No­thing can be plainer than that S. Basil made Scripture alone the Foundation of Faith as to this Point. And no one upon all Occasions speaks more ex­presly than he doth as to the Sufficiency of Scripture for De vera fide, p. 386. A. C. p. 391. C. a Rule of Faith; and he was too great, and too wise a Man to contradict himself.

2. That there were different forms of speech used in Ascet. Reg. 26. Reg 80. c. 22. the Church concerning the Holy Ghost, some taken out of Scripture, and others received by Tradition from the Fathers. When he proves the Divinity of the Holy Ghost De Sp. San [...]t. c. 9. he appeals to Scripture, and declares, that he would nei­ther think nor speak otherwise than he found there. But c. 10. it was objected that the Form S. Basil used was not found in Scripture; he answers, that the equivalent is there c. 21. found; and that there were some things received by Tra­dition, which had the same force towards Piety. And if we take away all unwritten Customs, we shall doe wrong to the Gospel, and leave a bare name to the Pub­lick Preaching. And from thence he insists on some Tra­ditionary Rites, as the Sign of the Cross, Praying to­wards the East, &c. His business is to shew that to the greater solemnity of Christian Worship several Customs were observed in the Church, which are not to be found in Scripture. And if other ancient Customs were recei­ved which are not commanded in Scripture, he sees no Reason that they should find such fault with this. And c. 29. this is the whole force of S. Basil's Reasoning, which can never be stretched to the setting up Tradition as a Rule of Faith distinct from Scripture.

Having thus shewed that there was no Catholick Tra­dition for this New Rule of Faith, I am now to give an Account how it came into the Church.

[Page 26] The first Step that was made towards it, was by the second Council of Nice. For, although the Emperour in the Synodical Epistle proposed to them the true ancient Mehod of judging in Councils, By the Books of Scripture placed on a Throne in the middle of the Council; yet they found, they could by no means doe their business that Way, and therefore as Bellarmin observes, they set up Tradition in the 6th and 7th Sessions, and pronounced Anathema's against those who rejected unwritten Tradi­tions. But although there were then almost as little pre­tence for Tradition as Scripture in the matter of Images; yet there having been a practice among them, to set up Richer. Hist. Conc. General. l. 1. c. 11. n. 13. and to worship Images, (which Richerius thinks came first into the Church from the Reverence shewed to the Emperours Statues) they thought this the securest way to advance that, which they could never defend by Scrip­ture.

But this prevailed very little in the Western Church, as is well known by the rejection of that Synod; howe­ver Pope Hadrian joined with them, and produced a wretched Tradition about Sylvester and Constantine to ju­stifie their Proceedings; as appears by the Acts of that Council. And from the time that Images were received at Rome, the force of Tradition was magnified; and by degrees it came to be made use of to justifie other Prac­tices, for which they had nothing else to plead.

Hitherto Tradition was made use of for matters of Practice, and the Scripture was generally received as the Rule of Faith; but some of the Schoolmen found it im­possible to defend some Doctrines held in the Church of Rome by mere Scripture, and therefore they were forced to call in the Help of Tradition. The most remarkable of these was Scotus, who although in his Prologue he as­serted, [Page 27] as is said already, that the Scripture did sufficient­ly contain all things necessary to salvation; yet when he came to particular Points, he found Scripture alone would never doe their business. And especially as to the Sacra­ments of the Church, about which he saw the Church of Rome then held many things which could never be Scot. in l. 1. Sent. Dist. 11. proved from thence. And this was the true occasion of Traditions being taken in for a partial Rule.

For after the Council of Lateran had declared several things to be of Faith, which were in no former Creeds, as Scotus confesses, and they were bound to defend them as Points of Faith, the Men of Wit and Subtilty, such as l. 4. Dist. 11. n. 15. Scotus was, were very hard put to it, to find out ways to prove those to have been old Points of Faith, which they knew to be very new. Then they betook them­selves to two things, which would serve for a colour to blind the common People; and those were,

1. That it was true, these things were not in Scrip­ture; but Christ said to his Disciples, I have many things to say unto you, &c. and among those many things they were to believe these new Doctrines to be some.

2. When this would not serve, then they told them, though these Doctrines were not explicitly in Scripture, yet they were implicitly there; and the Church had au­thority to fetch them out of those dark places, and to set them in a better light. And thus Scotus helped himself out in that dark Point of Transubstantiation. First he at­tempts n. 13. to make it out by Tradition, but finding that would not doe the business effectually, he runs to the Au­thority of the Church, especially in the business of Sacra­ments, and we are to suppose, saith he, that the Church doth expound the Scripture with the same Spirit which in­dited them. This was a brave Supposition indeed, but he offers no proof of it.

[Page 28] If we allow Scotus to have been the Introducer of Tra­dition, as to some Points of Faith, yet I have made it appear, that his Doctrine was not received in the Schools. But after the Council of Constance had declared several Propositions to be Heretical, which could not be con­demned by Scripture, there was found a Necessity of holding, that there were Catholick Truths not contained in Scripture. The first Proposition there condemned was, That the Substance of Bread and Wine remain in the Sa­crament of the Altar: the second, That the Accidents do not remain without their Subject: Now how could such as these be condemned by Scripture? But although one­ly some were said to be Heretical, yet all were said to be against Catholick Truth. But where is this Catholick Truth to be found? Cardinal Cusanus thought of a current sense of Scripture, according Scripturas esse and tempus adapta­tas & variè intellectas, ità ut uno tempore secundùm eurrentem univer­salem ritum exponerentur, mutato ri­tu iterum sente [...]tia mutaretur Cu­san. ad Bohem. Epist. 2. to the Churches Occasions; so that though the Churches Practice should be directly contrary, yet the Scripture was to be understood as the Church practised. This was a very plain and effectual way, if it had not been too gross; and therefore it was thought much better by Cardinal Turrecremata, to found Catholick Verities on unwritten Tradition, as well as on Scripture.

After this, Leo X. in his famous Bull against Luther, Exurge Domine, made a farther step; for 22 Proposition condemned therein, is That it is certain that it is not in the power of the Church or Pope to appoint new Articles of Faith. It seems then the Pope or Church have a Power to constitute new Articles of Faith; and then neither Scripture nor Tradition can be the certain Rule of Faith, but the Present Church or Pope.

This had put an end to the business, if it would have taken; but the World being wiser, and the Errours and [Page 31] Corruptions complained of not being to be defended [...] Scripture, Tradition was pitched upon as a secure Way; and accordingly several attempts were made towards the setting of it up, by some Provincial Councils before that of Trent. So in the Council of Sens, 1527. Can. 53. It is declared to be a pernicious Errour to receive nothing but what is deduced from Scripture, because Christ de­livered many things to his Apostles which were never written. But not one thing is alledged as a matter of Faith so conveyed; but onely some Rites about Sacra­ments and Prayer; and yet he is declared a Heretick as well as Schismatick, who rejects them. Indeed the Apo­stles Creed is mentioned, but not as to the Articles con­tained in it, but as to the Authours of it. But what is there in all this that makes a man guilty of Heresie?

Jod. Clicthoveus, a Doctor of Paris, the next Year wrote an Explication and Defence of this Council, but he mistakes the Point; for he runs upon it as if it were, whether all things to be believed and observed in the Church, were to be expresly set down in Scripture? where­as a just consequence out of it is sufficient. And the grea­test strength of what he saith to the purpose, is, that the other Opinion was condemned in the Council of Con­stance.

And from no better a Tradition than this did the Coun­cil of Trent declare the unwritten Word to be a Rule of Faith equal with the Scriptures.


II. About the Canon of Scripture, defined by the Council of Trent.

This is declared by the Council of Trent, Sess. 4. and therein the Books of Tobias, Judith, Wisedom of Solo­mon, Ecclesiasticus, Maccabees and Baruch are received for Canonical, with the twenty two Books in the Hebrew Ca­non, and an Anathema is denounced against those who do not. And presently it adds, that hereby the World might see what Authorities the Council proceeded on for con [...]rming matters of Faith as well as reforming manners.

Now to shew that there was no Catholick Tradition for the ground of this Decree, we are to observe,

1. That these Canonical Books are not so called in a large sense for such as have been used or read in the Church; but in the strict sense for such as are a good Foundation to build matters of Faith upon.

2. That these Books were not so received by all even in the Council of Trent. For what is received by virtue of a Catholick Tradition, must be universally received by the Members of it. But that so it was not appears by the account given by both the Historians. F. Paul saith, that in the Congregation there were two different Opinions Hist. of the Council of Tr. l. 2. p. 154. of those who were for a particular Catalogue; one was to distinguish the Books into three parts, the other to make all the Books of equal authority; and that this latter was carried by the greater number. Now if this were a Ca­tholick Tradition, how was it possible for the Fathers of the Council to divide about it? And Cardinal Pallavicini himself saith, that Bertanus and Seripandus propounded the putting the Books into several Classes, Ibid. l. 6. c. 11. p. 4. some to be read for Piety, and others to confirm Doctrines of Faith; and that Cardinal Seripando wrote a most lear­ned [Page 31] Book to that purpose. What! against a Catholick Tradition? It seems, he was far from believing it to be so. And he confesses, that when they came to the Anathema, the Legats and twenty Fathers were for it; p. 8. Madrucci and fourteen were against it, because some Ca­tholicks were of another opinion. Then certainly, they knew no Catholick Tradition for it.

Among these Cardinal Cajetan is mention'd, who was, saith Pallavicini, severely rebuked for it by Melchior Ca­nus; but what is that to the Tradition of the Church? Canus doth indeed appeal to the Council of Carthage, Innocentius I. and the Council of Florence; but this doth Can. Loc. Theol. l. 2. c. 11. not make up a Catholick Tradition against Cajetan; who declares that he follows S. Jerom, who cast those Books Cajet. in Ec­cles. fine. out of the Canon with Respect to Faith. And he answers the Arguments brought on the other side, by this di­stinction, that they are Canonical for Edification, but not Ad Ester c. 10. ad fin. for Faith. If therefore Canus would have confuted Ca­jetan he ought to have proved that they were owned for Canonical in the latter Sense. Cajetan in his Epistle to Clemens VII. before the Historical Books, owns the great Obligation of the Church to S. Jerom for distin­guishing Canonical and Apocryphal Books; and saith, that he hath freed it from the Reproach of the Jews, who said the Christians made Canonical Books of the Old Testament which they knew nothing of. And this was an Argu­ment of great consequence; but Canus takes no notice of it, and it fully answers his Objection, that men could not know what Books were truly Canonical, viz. such as were of divine inspiration, and so received by the Jews. Catharinus saith, in Answer to Cajetan, that the Jews Annot. in Ca­jet. l. 1. p. 37. had one Canon, and the Church another. But how comes the Canon to be received as of divine Inspiration which was not so received among the Jews? This were to re­solve [Page 32] all into the Churches Inspiration and not into Tra­dition.

Bellarmin grants, that the Church can by no means make De Verb. Dei, l. 1. c. 11. a Book Canonical which is not so, but onely declare what is Canonical, and that, not at pleasure; but from ancient Te­stimonies, from similitude of style with Books uncontrovert­ed, and the general Sense and Taste of Christian People. Now the Case here relates to Books not first written to Christians, but among the Jews, from whom we receive the Oracles of God committed to them. And if the Jews never believed these Books to contain the Oracles of God in them, how can the Christian Church embrace them for such, unless it assumes a Power to make, and not merely to declare Canonical Books? For he grants we have no Testimony of the Jews for them.

But Catharinus himself cannot deny that S. Jerom saith, that although the Church reads those Books, yet it doth not receive them for Canonical Scriptures. And he makes a pitisull Answer to it. For he confesses, that the Church taken for the Body of the Faithfull did not receive them; but as taken for the Governours it did. But others grant that they did receive them no more than the People; and as to the other, the cause of Tra­dition Jul. Ruger. de libris Ca­nonicis, p. 80. is plainly given us. And in truth he resolves all at last into the opinion of the Popes Innocentius, Gelasius and Eugenius 4. But we are obliged to him for letting us know the Secret of so much zeal for these Apocryphal Books, viz. that they are of great force against the Here­ticks, for Purgatory is no where so expresly mention'd as in p. 41. the Maccabees. If it had not been for this, S. Jerom and Cajetan might have escaped Censure, and the Jewish Canon had been sufficient.

[Page 33] But to shew, that there hath been no Catholick Tra­dition about the Tridentine Canon, I shall prove these two things:

1. That there hath been a constant Tradition against it in the Eastern Church.

2. That there never was a constant Tradition for it in the Western Church.

1. That there hath been a constant Tradition against it in the Eastern Church, which received the Jewish Canon, without the Books declared Canonical by the Council of Trent. We have very early Evidence of this in the Te­stimony of Melito, Bishop of Sardis, who lived not long after the middle of the 2d. Century, and made it his business to enquire into this matter, and he delivers but Euseb. l. 4. c. 25. 22 Books of the Old Testament. The same is done by Ori­gen in the next, who took infinite Pains, as Eusebius l. 6. c. 25. Philocal. c. 3. saith, in searching after the Copies of the Old Testament. And these Testimonies are preserved by Eusebius in the following Century: and himself declares, that there was no sacred Book among the Euseb. Demonstr. l. 8. p. 368. Chronic. Gr. p. 172. Jews from the time of Zorobabel; which cuts off the Books canonized by the Council of Trent. In the same Age we have the Testimonies of Athanasius, St. Athanas. Ep. 39. Cyril. Cabech. 4. Cyril of Jerusalem, Epiphanius, S. Basil, Epiph. de mensuris & ponder.S. Gregory Nazianzene, Amphilochius and Basil. in Origen. Philocal. S. Chrysostom: It is not to be imagined Greg. Nazianzen. in Carm. that a Tradition should be better attested Amph. in Canon. Ep. apud Balsam. in one Age than this was, by so considerable Men in dif­ferent S. Chrysost. in Gen. hom. 4. Churches, who give in the Testimony of all those Churches they belonged to. And yet besides these we have in that Age a concurrent Testimony of a Council of Bishops at Laodicea, from several Provinces of Asia; and Conc. Laodi­cea, c. 59. which is yet more, this Canon of theirs was received into [Page 34] the Code of the Catholick Church; and so owned by the Council of Chalcedon, which by its first Canon gives Au­thority to it. And Justinian allows the force of Laws to the Canons which were either made or confirmed by No [...]el. 131. the four General Councils. But it is the point of Traditi­on I am upon; and there [...]ore Justinian's Novel may at least be a s [...]rong Evidence of that in the 6th Century: In the 7th, Leontius gives his own Testimony, and that of The­odorus. Leont. de Sect [...]s, Act. 2. D [...]mascen. de [...]ide, lib. 4. c. 18. In the 8th, Damascen expresly owns the Hebrew Canon of 22 Books, and excludes by name some of the Books made Canonical at Trent. In the 9th we have the Test [...]mony of Nicephorus, Patriarch of Constantinople, if Niceph Chro­ [...]gr. p. 419. he be the Authour of the Laterculus, at the end of his Chr [...]nography; but if he be not, he must be an Authour of that Age, being translated by Anastasius Bibliotheca­rius. Anastas. Hist. p. 189. Not. in Can. 27. Carthag. Niceph. in Epigram. Metroph. Confess. c. 7. p. 82. Phil. Cyprii Chronic. Ec­cles. Graec. p. 459. In the 12th. Balsamon and Zonaras refer to the Council of Laodicea, and the Greek Fathers. In the 14th. Nicephorus Calisthus reckons but 22 Books of the Old Te­stament. And in this Age, we have the clear Testimony of Metrophanes, (afterwards Patriarch of Alexandria) who saith, there are but 22 Canonical Books of the Old Testament; but the rest, i. e. Tobit, Judith, Wisedom, Ec­clesiasticus, Baruch and Machabees are usefull, and there­fore not wholly to be rejected, but the Church never recei­ved them for Canonical and Authentical, as appears by many Testimonies, as, among others, of Gregory the Divine, Amphilochius and Damascen: and therefore we never prove matters of Faith out of them.

2. Let us now compare this Tradition with that of the Western Church for the New Canon of Trent. It cannot be denied, that Innocentius I. and Gelasius did enlarge the Ca­non, and took in the Apocryphal Books (unless we call in question the Writings under their Names;) but gran­ting them genuine, I shall shew that there is no compa­rison [Page 35] between this Tradition and that of the Eastern Church, and therefore there could be no possible Reason for the Council of Trent to make a Decree for this Tradition, and to anathematize all who did not submit to it. For,

1. This Tradition was not universally received at that time. Innocentius his Epistle is supposed to be written A. D. 405. Was the Western Church agreed before or af­ter about this matter? This Epistle was written to Eru­perius, a Gallican Bishop, (to whom St. Jerom dedicated his Commentaries on Zechariah,) but now it unluckily falls out, that the Tradition of the Gallican Church was contrary to this; as appears by S. Hilary, (who could Hilar. Prolog. in Psalm. not be ignorant of it, being a famous Bishop of that Church) and he tells us, there were but 22 Canonical Books of the Old Testament. I confess he saith, some were for adding Tobit and Judith, but it is very observable that he saith, that the other Account is most agreeable to ancient Tradition, which is a mighty Argument against Innocentius, who brings no Tradition to justifie his Ca­non. When St. Augustin produced a Place out of the De Praedest. Sanctor. c. 14. Book of Wisedom, the Divines of Marseilles rejected it; because the Book was not Canonical: Therefore in that time Innocent's Canon was by no means received in the Gallican Church; for by it this Book was made Canonical. But S. Jerom, who had as much learning as Pope Innocent, Prolog. Gal. Prolog. in lib. Salom. ad Paul. & Eust. ad Chromat. vehemently opposed this New Canon more than once or ten times; and not onely speaks of the Jewish Canon, but of the Canon of the Church. The Church, saith he, reads the Books of Tobit, Judith and Machabees, but the Church doth not receive them among Canonical Scriptures. What Church doth he mean? Not the Synagogue certainly. Pope Innocent saith, Those Books are to be received into the Ca­non; S. Jerom saith, the Church doth not receive them, but that they are to be cast out; Where is the Certainty [Page 36] of Tradition to be found? If Innocent were in the right, S. Jerom was foully mistaken, and in plain terms belied the Church. But how is this consistent with the Saint­ship of St. Jerom? Or with common discretion if the Church did receive those Books for Canonical? For e­very one could have disproved him. And it required no great Judgment or deep Learning to know what Books were received, and what not. If S. Jerom were so mistaken (which it is very hard to believe) how came Ruffinus not to observe his errours and opposition to the Church? Nay, how came Ruffinus himself to fall into the very same prodigious mistake? For he not onely rejects the controverted Books out of the Canon, but saith, he follow'd the ancient Tradition therein. What Ruffin. in Symbol. pag. 188, 189. account can be given of this matter? If Innocent's Tra­dition were right, these men were under a gross Delu­sion; and yet they were learned and knowing Persons, and more than ordinarily conversant in the Doctrines and Traditions of the Church.

2. This Opinion was not received as a Tradition of the Church afterwards. For, if it had been, how could Gregory I. reject the Book of Machabees out of the Ca­non, Greg. Moral. in Job. l. 19. c. 17. when two of his Predecessours took it in? It is somewhat hard, to suppose one Pope to contradict two of his Predecessours about the Canon of Scripture; yet I see not how to avoid it; nor how it is consistent with the Constancy of Tradition, much less with the pretence to Infallibility. He did not merely doubt, as Canus would Can. Loc. The­ol. l. 2. c. 11. ad 4. Cath. de Ca­ [...]o [...]icis Scrip. in Opuscul. p. 302. have it thought, but he plainly excludes them out of the Canon. Catharinus thinks he follow'd S. Jerom. What then? Doth this exclude his contradicting his Prede­cessours? Or was S. Jerom's Judgment above the Pope's? But it was not S. Gregory alone who contradicted the former Popes Canon; for it was not received either in [Page 37] Italy, Spain, France, Germany or England; and yet no doubt it was a very Catholick Tradition.

Not in Italy; for there Cassiodore, a learned and de­vout Man in the next Century to them, gives an ac­count of the Canon of Scripture, and he takes not any notice either of Innocent or Gelasius. He first sets down the Order of Scripture according to S. Jerom; and then Cassiodor. de Instit. Di­vin. liter. cap. 12, 13, 14. c. 6. according to S. Augustin; and in the last place, accor­ding to the old Translation and the LXX. and where himself speaks of the Apocryphal Books before, he follows S. Jerom's Opinion, that they were written rather for manners than Dactrine. He confesses there was a diffe­rence about the Canon; but he goes about to excuse it. But what need that if there were a Catholick Tradition then in the Church concerning it, and that inforced by two Popes?

But it may yet seem stranger, that even in Italy, one ca­nonized for a Saint by Clemens VII. should follow S. Jerom's Opinion in this matter, viz. S. Antoninus, Bishop S. Antonin. Sum. Hist. P. 1. Tit. 3. c. 4. of Florence. Who speaking of Ecclestasticus received in­to the Canon of the two Popes, he saith, it is onely re­ceived by the Church to be read, and is not authentick to prove any thing in matters of Faith. He that writes Notes upon him, saith, that he follows S. Jerom, and must be understood of the Eastern Church; for the Western Church always receiv'd these Books into the Canon. But he speaks not one word of the Eastern Church; and by the Church he could understand nothing but what he accoun­ted the Catholick Church. Canus allows Antoninus to Can. Loc. The­ol. l. 2. c. 11. have rejected these Books; but he thinks the matter not so clear, but then they might doubt concerning it. Then there was no such Evidence of Tradition to convince men. But Antoninus hath preserved the Judgment of a Part. 3. Tit. 18. c. 6. Sect. 2, & 3. greater man concerning these Books even Thomas Aqui­nas, [Page 38] who in 2. 2dae. he saith, denied these Books to have such authority as to prove any matter of Faith by them: which is directly contrary to the Council of Trent. If this passage be not now to be found in him, we know whom to blame for it. If Antoninus saw it there, we hope his word may be taken for it.

In Spain, we have for the Hebrew Canon the Testi­monies Eur in Adait. ad Lyram ad c. 1. Ester. & 7. Tostat. in Matt. Pr [...]f. q. 1. 2. Xim. Praef. ad Bib. Comp. of Paulus Burgensis, Tostatus, and Cardinal Xi­mines.

In France, of Victorinus, Agobardus, Radulphus Fla­viacensis, Petrus Cluniacensis, Hugo de S. Victore, and Richard de S. Victore, Lyra and others.

In Germany, of Rabanus Maurus, Strabus, Rupertus, Hermannus Contractus and others.

In England, of Bede, Alcvin, Sarisburiensis, Ockam, Waldensis and others. Whom I barely mention, because their Testimonies are at large in Bishop Cosins his Schola­stical History of the Canon of Scripture, and no man hath yet had the hardiness to undertake that Book.

These I think are sufficient to shew there was no Ca­tholick Tradition for the Decree of the Council of Trent about the Canon of Scripture.

I now proceed to shew on what pretences and colours it came in, and by what degrees and steps it advanced.

1. The first step was, the Esteem which some of the Fathers expressed of these Books in quoting of passages out of them. We do not deny that the Fathers did fre­quently cite them: even those who expresly rejected them from being Canonical, and not as ordinary Books, but as such as were usefull to the Church, wherein ma­ny wise Sayings and good Actions are recorded. But the many Quotations the Fathers do make out of them is the onely plausible pretence which those of the Church [Page 39] of Rome have to defend the putting them into the Canon, as appears by Bellarmin and others. The Book of Tobit, they tell us, is mentioned by S. Cyprian, S. Ambrose, St. Basil, and St. Augustin. Of Judith by St. Jerom who mentions a Tradition that it was allowed in the Council of Nice; but certainly S. Jerom never believed it, when he declares it to be Apocryphal, and not sufficient to prove any matter of Faith. The Book of Wisedom by S. Cypri­an, S. Cyril and S. Augustin. Ecclesiasticus by Clemens Alexandrinus, S. Cyprian, Epiphanius, S. Ambrose and S. Augustin. The Machabees by Tertullian, Cyprian, Cle­mens Alexandrinus, Origen, Eusebius, S. Ambrose, S. Au­gustin. But all these Testimonies onely prove that they thought something in those Books worth alledging, but not that they judged the Books themselves Canonical. And better Arguments from their Citations might be brought for the Books of the Sibylls than for any of these. We are not then to judge of their Opinion of Canonical Books by bare Citations, but by their declared Judgments about them.

2. The next step was, when they came to be read in Churches; but about this there was no certain Rule. For the Councils of Laodicea and Carthage differed chiefly up­on this Point. The former decreed, That none but Cano­nical Scripture should be read under the Name of Holy Wri­tings; and sets down the names of the Canonical Books then to be read, (and so leaves out the Apocalypse.) The latter from their being read, inferr'd their being Canonical; for it agrees with the other, that none but Canonical should be read, and because these were read, it reckons them up with the Canonical Books; for so the Canon concludes, We have received from our Fathers that these Books are to be read in Churches.

[Page 40] But the Council of Carthage was not peremptory in this matter; but desired it might be referred to Boniface and other Bishops beyond the Seas: Which shews that here was no Decree absolutely made, nor any Certainty of Tradition; for then to what purpose should they send to other Churches to advise about it?

3. When they came to be distinguished from Apocry­phal Writings. Whence those who do not consider the Reason of it, conclude them to have been Canonical. But sometimes Apocryphal signified such Books as were not in the Canon of Faith, as in the Authours before mentio­ned; sometimes such Books which were not allowed to be used among Christians. This distinction we have in Ruf­finus, who saith there are three sorts of Books; Canonical, as the 22 of the Old Testament; Ecclesiastical, of which sort he reckons Wisedom, Ecclesiasticus, Tobit, Judith and Machabees, and these he saith were permitted to be read in Churches, but no Argument could be brought out of them for matter of Faith, Apocryphal are such which by no means were permitted to be read. And thus Inno­centius his words may well be understood: For he con­cludes with saying, that other Writings were not onely to be rejected, but to be condemned. And so his meaning is to distinguish them from such counterfeit Divine Wri­tings as were then abroad. For these were not to be wholly rejected, and in that large sense he admits them into the Canon, taking Ecclesiastical Writings which were read in Churches into that number. And in this sense S. Augustin used the Word Apocryphal, when the Book of Enoch is so called by him, and such other counterfeit Writings under the Names of the Prophets and Apostles; Aug. de Civ. Dei, lib. 15. c. 23. l. 17. c. 20. but elsewhere he distinguishes between the Canonical Books of Salomon, and those which bear his Name; which he saith the more learned know not to be his, but the We­stern [Page 41] Church had of old owned their Authority. But in the case of the Book of Enoch, he appeals to the Canon, which was kept in the Jewish Temple; and so falls in with S. Je­rom; and he confesses it is hard to justifie the Authority of those which are not in the Hebrew Canon. Of the Machabees he saith, It is distinguished from the Writings Aug. de Civ. Dei, l. 18. c. 36. called Canonical; but it is received by the Church as such. What! to confirm matters of Faith? No. But for the glorious sufferings therein recorded; and elsewhere he saith, C. Gaudent. c. 29. it is usefull, if it be soberly read. S. Augustin knew very well that all Books were not received alike; and that many were received in some parts of the Western Church from the old Translation out of the LXX, which were not received in the Eastern; and therefore in his Books of Christian Doctrine he gives Rules in judging of Canonical De Doctr. l. 3. c. 8. Books; to follow the Authority of the greatest Number of Catholick Churches, especially the Apostolical; and that those which were received by all, should be preferred be­fore those which were onely received by some. But he very well knew, that the Hebrew Canon was universally re­ceived, and that the controverted Books were not; and therefore, according to his Rule, these could never be of Equal Authority with the other.

4. When the Roman Church declared that it received the controverted Books into the Canon. This is said to have been done by Gelasius, with his Synod of LXX Bi­shops, (and yet it is hard to understand how Gregory so soon after should contradict it.) The Title of it in the old MS. produced by Chiffletius, and by him attributed to Hormisdas, is, The Order of the Old Testament which Not. in Vigil. Taps. p. 150. the holy Catholick Roman Church receives and honours is this. But whether by Gelasius, or Hormisdas, I cannot understand, why such a Decree as this should not be put into the old Roman Code of Canons, if it had been then [Page 42] made. That there was such a one appears by the Copies of it in the Vatican, mentioned by the Roman Correctors of Gratian, and by mention of it by the Canon Si Roma­norum, Dist. 19. and De Libellis, Dist. 20. and by the lat­ter we understand what Canons of Councils and Decrees of Popes are in it, among whom are both Gelasius and Hormisdas. This they agree to be the same with that published by Wendelstin at Mentz, 1525. The Epistle of Innocentius to Exuperius with the Canon is there publi­shed; but not the other; and so is the Canon of the Council of Carthage; but that of Laodicea is cut off; and so they are in that published by Dionysius Exiguus and Quesnell, (Justellus his ancient Copy was imperfect there,) but both these Canons being in the Roman Code, are an Argument to me, that the controverted Books were received by the Roman Church at that time; but in such a manner, that S. Jerom's Prologues still stood in the vul­gar Latin Bible, with the Commentaries of Lyra, and Additions of Burgensis, which were stiff for the Hebrew Canon; and S. Jerom's Authority prevailed more than the Pope's, as appears fully by what hath been already pro­duced.

5. To advance the Authority of these Books one step higher, Eugenius IV. declared them to be Part of the Ca­non in the Instruction given to the Armenians. Which the Roman Writers pretend to have been done in the Coun­cil of Florence: But Naclantus Bishop of Chioza, in the Council of Trent, as Pallavicini saith, denied that any Hist. Concil. Trident. l. 6. c. 11. [...]. 12. such Decree was made by the Council of Florence; because the last Session of it ended 1439. and that Decree was signed Feb. 4. 1441. To this the Legat replied, that this was a mistake occasioned by Abraham Cretensis, who published the Latin version of it, onely till the Greeks departure; but the Council continued three years longer, as appeared by [Page 43] the Extracts of Augustinus Patricius, since published in the Tomes of the Councils. But he never mentions the Canon of Scripture; however, because Cervinus affirms that he saw the Original signed by the Pope and Cardi­nals, we have no reason to dispute it. But then it ap­pears how very little it signified, when Antoninus the Bi­shop of Florence opposed it, and Cardinal Ximenes and Cardinal Cajetan slighted it, and all who embraced the Council of Basil looked on Eugenius his Decree as void; and after all, that very Decree onely joins the Apocry­phal Books in the same Canon, as the Council of Carthage had done; but it was reserved as the peculiar Honour of the Council of Trent to declare that Matters of Faith might be proved out of them, as well as out of any Canoni­cal Scriptures.

III. About the free use of the Scripture in the vulgar Language, prohibited by the Council of Trent.

To understand the Sense of the Council of Trent in this matter, we must consider;

1. That it declares the vulgar Latin to be Authentick; i. e. that no man under any pretence shall dare to presume to reject it. Suppose the pretence be that it differs from the Original; no matter for that, he must not reject that which the Council hath declared Authentick, i. e. among the Latin Editions. But suppose a Man finds other La­tin Translations truer in some parts, because they agree more with the Original Text, may he therein reject the vulgar Latin? By no means, if he thinks himself bound to adhere to the Council of Trent. But the Coun­cil supposes it to agree with the Original. And we must believe the Council therein. This is indeed the meaning [Page 44] of the Council as far as I can judge. But what Catholick Tradition was there for this? Tes for a thousand years af­ter Gregory's time. But this is not Antiquity enough to found a Catholick Tradition upon. If there were no more than a thousand from Gregory, there were six hundred past before him; so that there must be a more ancient Tradi­tion in the Church, wherein this version was not Authen­tick; and how came it then to be Authentick by virtue of Tradition? Here then Tradition must be given up; and the Council of Trent must have some other ground to go upon. For I think the Traditionary Men will not maintain the vulgar Latin to have been always Authen­tick.

2. That it referred the making the Index of prohibited Books to the Pope; and in the 4th Rule of that Index, All Persons are forbidden the use of the Scripture in the vul­gar Tongue, without a particular Licence, and whosoever presumes to doe it without a faculty, unless he first gives up his Bible, he is not to receive Absolution.

My business is now to enquire what Catholick Tradi­tion the Pope and Council went upon in this Prohibition. But as to the Testimony of Fathers, I am prevented by some late Discourses on this Subject. In stead thereof therefore I shall,

1. Shew from their own Writers, that there could be no Catholick Tradition for such a Prohibition.

2. Prove the General Consent of the Catholick Church from publick Acts, as to the free use of the Scripture.

Thomas Aquinas grants that the Scripture was proposed Sum. 1. q. 1. a. 9. to all, and in such a manner that the most rude might un­derstand it. Therefore there was no Prohibition of such Persons reading it.

Cajetan there uses two Arguments for the Scriptures using Metaphors and Similitudes. 1. Because God pro­vides [Page 45] for all. 2. Because the Scripture is tendred to all. And the common People are not capable of understanding spiritual things without such helps. If the Scripture were intended for all, how comes a Prohibition of the use of it?

Sixtus Senensis grants, that in former times the Scrip­ture Sixt. Senens. Biblioth. l. 6. n. 152. was translated into the vulgar Languages, and the People did commonly reade it, to their great Benefit. Then a Prohibition of it must alter the Churches practical Tradi­tion.

Alphonsus à Castro yields to Erasmus, that the Scrip­tures Alphons. à Castro, l. 1. c. 13. were of old translated into the vulgar Tongues, and that the Fathers, such as S. Chrysostom, and S. Jerom, persuaded People to the reading them. But the Case is al­tered now, when such mischief comes by the Reading the Scriptures. And yet the Tradition of the Church conti­nues the same, and is impossible to be changed.

Azorius puts the Case fairly; he grants that the Scrip­tures Azor. Instit. Moral. l. 8. c. 26. were at first written and published in the Common Language; that S. Chrysostom admits all to reade the Scriptures; and that the People did so then; but they do not now. But he saith, the People then understood Greek and Latin, and now they do not. If it were their own Language they might well understand it; but why should not the Scripture now be in a Language they may un­derstand? For Greek and Latin did not make the com­mon People one jot wiser or better; and yet this Man calls it a Heresie now to say, the Scriptures ought to be translated into vulgar Languages. How much is the Faith of the Church changed?

2. I am now to prove the General Consent of the Ca­tholick Church in this matter from publick Acts, i. e. that all Parts of it have agreed in Translations of Scrip­ture into Vulgar Languages without any such Prohibi­tion.

[Page 46] If there had been any such thing in the Primitive Church, it would have held against the Latin Transla­tion it self. For I hope none will say it was the Original, however Authentick it be made by the Council of Trent. How then came the Originals to be turned into the common Language? (as I suppose Latin will be allow'd to have been the common Language of the Roman Em­pire.) There is no Objection can now be made against any modern Translations, but would have held against the first Latin Version. Who the Authour of it was is utterly unknown; and both S. Augustin and S. Jerom Aug. de Doct. Christian. l 2. c. 11. Hier. Praes. in Josuam. say, there was a great variety among the old Translations, and every one Translated as he thought fit. So that there was no restraint laid upon translating into the common Language. And unless Latin were an infallible Guide to those that understood it, the People were as liable to be deceived in it, as either in English or French.

But it was not onely thus in the Roman Empire, but whereever a People were converted to Christianity in all thè elder times, the Scripture was turned into their Lan­guage. The Ecclesiastical Historians mention the Con­version Socr. l. 4. c. 33. Soz. l. 6. c. 37. Nicep. l. 11. c. 48. Isid. in Chron. Gothorum. Walas. Strab. de Reb. Ec [...]l. c. 7. of the Goths, and upon that, the Translation of the Bible into their Language by Ulphilas their Bishop. Walafridus Strabo adds to this, that besides the Bible, they had all publick Offices of Religion performed in their own Language.

How soon the Churches in Persia were planted, it is impossible for us now to know; but in the MS. Eccle­siastical History of Abulpharagius (in the hands of Dr. Lof­tus) it is said, that a Disciple of Thaddaeus preached the Gospel in Persia, Assyria and the Parts thereabouts; and that by another Disciple of his 360 Churches were settled there in his time; and that he came to Seleucia, the Me­tropolis of the Persians, and there established a Church, [Page 47] where he continued fifteen years. And from him there was a Succession of the Patriarchs of Seleucia, which con­tinues still in the East; for upon destruction thereof by Almansor, they removed first to Bagdad, and after that to Mozal over against Ninive, where their residence hath been since; and this Patriarch had universal Jurisdiction over the Eastern Churches as far as the East Indies, as appears by Morinus his Books of Ordinations in the East, and the proceedings with the Christians of St. Thomas in the very end of the last Century.

But we are certain from the Greek Historians, that in Constantine's time the Christians in Persia were so nume­rous that he wrote to the King of Persia on their behalf. Eusebius saith that Constantine was informed, that the Chur­ches Euseb. de Vit. Const. l. 4. c. 8. were much increased there, and great Multitudes were brought into Christ's Flock; and Constantine himself in his Letter to Sapores saith, the Christians flourished in the best c. 13. parts of Persia; and he hoped they might continue so to doe. But after Constantine's death a terrible Persecution befell them, wherein Sozomen saith, the Names of 16000 Martyrs Soz. l. 2. c. 14. were preserved, besides an innumerable Multitude of un­known persons. The sharpest part of the Persecution fell upon the Bishops and Presbyters; especially in Adiabene, c. 12. which was almost wholly Christian, which Ammianus Ammianus Marcell. l. 23. Marcellinus saith was the same with Assyria, wherein were Ninive, Ecbatane, Arbela, Gaugamela, Babylon (or Soz. l. 2. c. 9. Seleucia) and Ctesiphon, of which Sozomen saith, Syme­on was then Archbishop. And he names above twenty Bishops who suffered besides, and one Mareabdes a Chor­episcopus, with 250 of his Clergy. After the time of Sapores several sharp Persecutions fell upon those Chur­ches in the times of Vararanes and Isdigerdes, of which the Greek Historians take notice, and one of them, saith Theodoret, lasted thirty years. This I mention to shew Theod. l. 5. [...]. 39. [Page 48] what mean thoughts those have of the Catholick Church who consine it to the Roman Communion. Theodoret Theod. de Cur. Graec. affect. Serm. 5. p. 555. Serm. 9. p. 615. Chrys in Joh. Hom 2 p. 561. and S. Chrysostom both affirm that the Persians had the Scriptures then in their own Language; and Sozomen saith, that Symeon Archbishop of Seleucia, and Ctesiphon before his own Martyrdom, incouraged the rest to suffer out of the holy Scriptures. Which supposes them well acquainted with the Language of it, and it is not very likely they should be either with the Hebrew, Greek or Latin; but the other Testimonies make it clear that it was in their own Tongue.

The Anonymous Writer of S. Chrysostom's Life affirms, Vit. Chrys. c. 113. that while he staid in Armenia, he caused the New Testa­ment to be translated into the Armenian Tongue for the benefit of those Churches. And this Tradition is allow'd by several learned Men in the Church of Rome. But the Armenians themselves say, the whole Bible was translated Conc. Eccl. Armen. cum Rom. c. 7. p. 63. into the Armenian Language by Moses Grammaticus, Da­vid and Mampraeus, three learned Men of their own, in the time of their Patriarch Isaac, about S. Chrysostom's time. Theodoret, in the place already cited, mentions the Armenian Translation, as a thing well known; and he was near enough to understand the truth of it.

Jacobus de Vitriaco, a Roman Cardinal, saith, that the Hist. Orient. c. 79. Armenians in his time had the Scriptures read to them in their own Language.

The Syriack Version for the Use of those in the Eastern parts who understood not Hebrew or Greek, is allowed by all learned Men to have been very ancient. I mean the old simple Version out of the Originals, and not that out of the LXX. of the Old Testament. As to the New, the Tradition of the Eastern People is, that it was done either in the Apostles times or very near them. Abraham Ecchellensis shews, from the Syriack Writers, [Page 49] that the Compleat Translation of the Bible was made in the Abr. Ecchell. not. in Ebe [...]. Jesu. time of Abgarus, King of Edessa, by the means of Thad­daeus and the other Apostles; and as to the time of Thad­daeus, Gregorius Malatiensis confirms it. Greg. Hist. Dynast. 6.

Postellus quotes an ancient Tradition (which my Ad­versaries ought to regard) that S. Mark himself Transla­ted not only his own Gospel, but all the Books of the Ne [...] Testament into the Vulgar Syriack. It is sufficient to my purpose, to shew that there was such an ancient Translation; which is owned by S. Chry [...]ost. bom. 2. in Joh. Ambros. Hex. 1. c. 8. Aug. de Civit. Dei, l. 15. c. 13. Diod. ad Gen. 27. 27. Theod in Psal. 3. 4. in Ps. 103. 26. in Ps. 112. 1. in Ps. 115. De Verb. Dei, l. 2. c. 4. S. Chrysostom, S. Ambrose, S. Augustin, Diodorus and Theodoret: which makes me wonder at Cardinal Bellarmin's affirming with so much confidence, that none of the Fathers speak of the Syriack Version, when Theodoret alone mentions it so often in his Commentaries.

Although the Greeks in Egypt might very well under­stand the Greek of the Old and New Testament, (espe­cially if that which is called the LXX. were done by the Alexandrian Jews, as some imagine) yet those who knew no other than the old Egyptian Language could not make use of it. And therefore a Coptick Translation was Prodr. Copt. c. 8. made for them; which Kircher thinks to have been 1300 years old. And he withal observes, that their ancient Liturgies were in the Coptick Language.

That it might not be susp [...]cted that Kircher imposed upon the World, he gives a particular account of the Books he had seen in the Vatican Library and elsewhere in the Coptick Tongue. The Pentateuch in three Tomes, distinguished into Paragraphs by lines. The four Gospels by themselves. S. Paul's Epistles and three Canonical E­pistles with the Acts in another Volume. The Apocalypse by it self; and the Psalter. The Liturgy of S. Mark with [Page 50] other daily Prayers. The Liturgy of S. Gregory, with the Prayers of S. Cyril in the Coptick Language; and a Liturgy of S. Basil, with Gregory and Cyril, with several other Rituals, Missals and Prayers, all in the same Tongue. All these, he saith, are in the Vatican Library. And in that of the Maronites College, he saith, is an old Coptick p. 1 [...]6. Martyrology about 1300 years standing, by which he finds, that the chief imployment of the old Egyptian Monks was to translate the Bible out of Hebrew, Chaldee and Greek in­to the Coptick Tongue.

Morinus saith, that in the Oratorian Lbrary at Paris, Dissert. Epist. 13. they had the Coptick Gospels brought from Constantinople by Monsr. de Sancy.

Petrus à Valle, a Nobleman of Rome, and a great Tra­veller, saith he had several parts of Scripture in the Cop­tick Epist. 14. Language; which were turned into Arabick, when the old Coptick grew into disuse.

Petraeus had in the Eastern Parts a Coptick Psalter, with an Arabick Version, which he designed to publish. Hottinger. Methurgem. p. 189.

The Congregation de propaganda Fide at Rome had several Coptick MSS. sent to them out of Egypt, among the rest the Coptick Book of Ordination Transloatd and Printed by Kircher; and since reprinted by Morinus.

Seguier the late Chancellour of France had in his Li­brary, the Consecration of a Patriarch in Coptick and Ara­bick, De Ordinat. sacris, p. 504. Catal. M S S. p. 31. and several Translations of the Bible, and Prayers in both Languages.

The Aethiopick Translation bears date with the Con­version Ludolph. Hist. Aethiop. l. 3. c. 4. of the Nation, according to their own Tradition, which some make to be in the Apostolical times, and o­thers in the time of Constantine; and their Publick Offi­ces are performed in their own Tongue. The Chancel­lour Seguier had not only many parts of the Bible, but Prayers and Offices in the Aethiopick Tongue.

[Page 51] I shall add but one thing more to this purpose, which is taken from the want of Antiquity in the Arabick Ver­sions; which is confessed by the learned Criticks on all sides. And even this tends to prove my design. For when the Saracen Empire prevailed, the People grew more acquainted with the Arabick than with the ancient Syriack or Coptick; and therefore the Scripture was then translated into Arabick; (as Vasaeus saith it was done in Spain after the Moors came thither by a Bishop of Se­vil) and this was the true reason why the Arabick Ver­sions have no greater Antiquity. For Gabriel Sionita ob­serves Gabr. Sionita de Arab. c. 12. that the Arabick is become the most Vulgar Lan­guage in the Eastern Parts. And because it was so in Syria as well as Egypt, therefore there are different Ara­bick Versions; the one called Codex Antiochenus, and the other Alexandrinus.

Thus I have proved that there was a Catholick Tradi­tion directly contrary to that established by order of the Council of Trent.

And now I proceed to give an Account of the Methods and Steps by which this Decree came to its ripeness.

1. The first Step was the Declension and Corruption of the Latin Tongue in the Western Church. It is observed by Polybius, that from the time of the first League between Polyb. l. 3. the Romans and Carthaginians, the Latin Tongue was so much changed even in Rome it self that very few could un­derstand the Words of it. And Festus in Latine loqui saith, that the Language was so alter'd, that scarce any part of it remained entire. Scaliger thinks these words were added to Festus by Paulus Diaconus; which seems much more probable, since he lived in the time of Charlemagn. At which time we may easily suppose the Latin Tongue to have been very much corrupted by the Writers, and [Page 52] not so easie to be understood any where by the Com­mon People in sudden Discourse, as it had been before. Which appears evident by the Latin Sermons made to the People in the several Provinces in the Roman Empire; as in Africa by S. Augustin and Fulgentius; in Italy by Petrus Chrysologus, Laurentius Novariensis, Gaudentius Brixiensis, Ennodius Ticinensis: In Spain by Isidore, Il­dephonsus and others: In Gaul by Caesarius, Eucherius, Eligius, and several others, whose Latin Sermons to the People are still extant. In the Council of Tours, in the Conc. Turon. 3. c. 17. time of Charlemagn, particular care is taken that the Ho­milies should be translated by their Bishops either into the Rustick Roman or the German, that the People might the easier understand them. These Homilies were either those which Charlemagn caused to be taken out of the Fathers, and applied to the several Lessons through the year, as Sigebert observes, or of their own composing; however Sigeb. ad An. 807. they were to be turned by the Bishops either into Ru­stick Roman, or German, as served best to the capacities of the People. For the Franks then either retained the Original German, or used the Rustick Roman; but this latter so much prevailed over the other, that in the so­lemn Oaths between Lewis and Charles upon parting the Dominions of France and Germany, set down in Ni­thardus, Nithard. l. 3. the Rustick Roman was become the Vulgar Lan­guage of France, and these were but the Grandchildren of Charlemagn. Marquardus Freherus thinks that onely Freher, in Exposit. Foe­deris inter Lud. & Car. the Princes and Great Men retained the German, but the generality then spake the Rustick Roman; as appears by the Oath of the People; which begins thus.

Si Lod [...]igs Sacrament que Son Fradre Carlo jurat conser­vat, v. Capitul. Caroli Calvi. Tit. 8. & Carlus meo Serdra de suo part non los tanit, si jo returnar non licit pois, ne io, ne neuls cui eo returnar nil pois, in nulla adjudha contra Lodwig nun li iver.

[Page 53] By which we may see what a mixture of Latin there was in the vulgar Language then used by the Franks, and how easie it was for the People then to understand the publick Offices being constant; but the Sermons not being so, there was greater necessity to turn them into that cor­ruptor Rustick Roman, which was thoroughly understood by them. In Spain the Latin was less corrupted before the Gothick and Arabick or Moorish Words were taken in­to it. Lucius Mariness saith, that had it not been for Marineus Si­cul. de Rebus Hisp. l. 5. [...]. 4. the mixture of those words, the Spaniards had spoken as good Latin as the Romans did in the time of Tully: and he saith, that to his time he had seen Epistles written in Spa­nish, wherein all the Nouns and Verbs were good Latin. In Italy the Affinity of the vulgar prevailing Language and the Latin continued so great, that the difference seemed for some hundred years, no more than of the learned and common Greek, or of the English and Scotch; and so no necessity was then apprehended of Transla­ting the correct Tongue into a corrupt Dialect of it.

But where there was a plain difference of Language there was some care even then taken, that the People might understand what they heard, as appears by these things:

1. Alcuinus gives an Account why one day was called Sabbatum in 12 Lectionibus, when there were but six Les­sons, Alchuin. de divin. Offic. c. 29. and he saith, it was because they were read both in Greek and Latin, they not understanding each others Lan­guages. Not because the Greek was a holy Tongue, but quia aderant Graeci, quibus ignota er at lingua Latina; which shews that the Church then thought it a reasonable cause to have the Scripture in such a Language, which might be understood by the People. The same Reason is given Amalar. de Offic. l. 2. c. 1,. by Amalarius.

[Page 54] 2. In the German Churches there were ancient Transla­tions of Scripture into their own Language. B. Rhenanus [...]en [...]. Rer. German. p. 112. attributes a Translation of the Gospels to Waldo Bishop of Freising, assoon as the Franks received Christianity, and he saith, it was the immortal Honours of the Franks, to have the Scripture so soon translated into their own Lan­guage; which, saith he, is of late opposed by some Divines: So little did he know of an universal Tradition against it. Goldastus mentions the Translation in Rhime by Ott­fridus Wissenburgensis, published by Achilles Gassarus, the Rer. Alem. To. 1. p. 120. To. 2. p. 119. Psalter of Notkerus, Rudolphus ab Eems his Paraphrase of the old Testament. Andreas du Chesn hath published a Preface before an old Saxon Book, wherein it is said, that Hist. Franc. To. 2. p. 326. Ludovicus Pius did take care that all the People should read the Scripture in their own Tongue, and gave it in charge to a Saxon to translate both Old and New Testament into the German Language; which, saith he, was perfor­med very elegantly.

3. In the Saxon Churches here, it was not to be expec­ted that the Scripture should be translated, till there were Persons learned both in the Saxon and the other Lan­guages. Bede, in his Epistle to Egbert, puts him upon in­structing the common People in their own Language, Bed. Epist. ad Egbert, p. 65. especially in the Creed and Lord's Prayer; and to further so good a Work, Bede himself translated the Gospel of St. John into the Saxon Tongue, as Cuthbert saith in the Epi­stle about his Death, in the Life of Bede, before his Sa­xon History. It appears by the old Canons of Churches, and the Epistles of Aelfric, saith Mr. Lisle, that there was an old Saxon Canon for the Priest to say unto the People the Saxon Trea­tise of the Old and New Te­stament. sense of the Gospel in English; and Aelfric saith of him­self, that he had translated the Pentateuch, and some of the Historical Books. The New Testament was translated by several hands; and an ancient Saxon Translation hath [Page 55] been lately published with the Gothick Gospels. And there were old Saxon Glosses upon the Gospels; of Aldred, Far­men and Owen. The last Work of K. Alfred was the trans­lating the Psalter; and if the MS. History of Ely deserves credit, he translated both the Old and New Testament.

4. It is not denied either by Bellarmin or Baronius, that the Slavonians in the 9th Century had a permission upon Bell. de Ver­bo Dci, l. 2. their conversion to Christianity, to enjoy the Bible, and to have publick Offices performed in their own Language. But Bar. ad An 880. n. 16. they tell us, it was because they were then Children in the Faith, and to be indulged; (but methinks Children were the most in danger to be seduced;) or there were not Priests enough to officiate in Latin at first: But this was no Reason then given, as appears by the Pope's own Let­ter published by Baronius, Wherein he gives God thanks for the Invention of Letters among them by Constantine a Philosopher; and he expresly saith, that God had not con­fined his Honour to three Languages, but all People and Languages were to praise him; and he saith, God himself in Scripture had so commanded; and he quotes St. Paul's words for it. One would wonder those great Men should no better consider the Popes own Reasons; but give o­thers for him, which he never thought of. It is true, he adds, that he would have the Gospel read first in Latin, and then in Salvonian, and if they pleased he would have the Mass said in Latin; but the Slavonians continued their Custom, and the Pope was willing enough to let them enjoy it, for his own convenience as well as theirs. For there was a secret in this matter, which is not fully un­derstood.

Aventinus, saith, that Methodius invented their I et­ters, Ave [...]in. An­nal. l. 4. p. 434. and translated the Scriptures into the Slavonian Tongue, and persuaded the People to reject the Latin Ser­vice; but this I see no ground for. But the Truth of the [Page 56] matter was, the Slavonians were converted by the means of Methodius and Cyril, (otherwise called Constantine) two Greek Bishops, and the Christian Religion was settled among them by their means, and they Translated the Scriptures and Offices of Worship into their own Lan­guage. The Pope had not forgotten the business of the Bulgarians, and he could not tell but this might end in subjection to another Patriarchal See; and therefore he en [...]eavours to get Methodius and Cyril to Rome, and ha­ving gained them, he sends a sweetning Letter to the Prince, and makes the concession before mentioned. For he could not but remember how very lately the Greeks had gained the Bulgarians from him; and lest the Slavonians should follow them, he was content to [...]ar. A. 869. n. 80. let them have what they desired, and had already E­stablished among themselves, without his Permission. All this appears from the account of this matter given by Constantinus Porphyrogenetus, compared with Diocleas his Regnum Slavorum, and Lucius his Dalmatian History.

It is sufficient for my purpose, that Diocleas owns that Constantine (to whom Andreas Dandalus, D. of Venice, in his M S History cited by Lucius, saith, the Pope gave Luci. de Reg­no Dalmatiae, l. 2. c. 3. the name of Cyril) did Translate the Bible into the Slavo­nian Tongue, for the benefit of the People, and the publick Offices out of Greek, according to their Custom. And the Chancellour Seguier had in his Library both the New Testament and L [...]turgies in the Slavonian Language, and Catal. M S S. p. 33, 34. in Cyril's Character; and many of the Greek Fathers Commentaries on Scripture in that Tongue, but not one of the Latin.

2. The next step was, when Gregory 7. prohibited the Greg. Regist. l. 7. Ep. 11. Translation of the Latin Offices in the Slavonian Tongue. And this he did to the King of Bohemia himself, after a [Page 57] peremptory manner; but he saith, it was the request of the Nobility, that they might have divine Offices in the Slavonian Tongue, which he could by no means yield to. What was the matter? How comes the Case to be so much altered from what it was in his Predecessor's time? The true Reason was, the Bohemian Churches were then brought into greater Subjection to the Roman See, after the Consecration of Dithmarus Saxo to be their Archbi­shop; and now they must own their Subjection, as the Roman Provinces were wont to do, by receiving the Language. But as his Predecessour had found Scripture for it, for Gregory pretends he had found Reason against it, viz. The Scripture was obscure, and apt to be misunderstood and despised. What! more than in the time of Methodi­us and Cyril? If they pleaded Primitive Practice, he plainly answers, that the Church is grown wiser, and hath corrected many things that Cum primitiva Ecclesia multa dissimulaverit quae à sanctis Patri­bus postmodum sirmataChristianita­te, & Religione crescente, subti [...] examinatione correcta sunt. were then allowed. This is indeed to the purpose; and therefore by the Authori­ty of S. Peter, he forbids him to suffer a­ny such thing, and charges him to oppose it with all his might.

But after all, it is entred in the Canon Law De Offi­cio Jud. Ord. l. 1. Tit. 31. c. Quoniam. as a Decree of Inno­cent 3. in the Lateran Council, that where there were Peo­ple of different Languages, the Bishop was to provide Per­sons fit to officiate in those several Languages. Why so? If there were a prohibition of using any but the Latin Tongue. But this was for the Greeks, and theirs was an holy Tongue. That is not said; nor if it were would it sig­nifie any thing; for doth any imaginary holiness of the Tongue sanctifie ignorant Devotion? But the Canon sup­poses them to have the same Faith. Then the meaning is, that no man must examin his Religion by the Scrip­ture, [Page 58] but if he rseolves beforehand to believe as the Church believes, then he may have the Scriptures or Prayers in what Language he pleases. But even this is not permitted in the Roman Church. For,

3. After the Inquisition was set up by the Authority of Innocent 3. in the Lateran Council, no Lay Persons were permitted to have the Books of the Old and New Testa­ment, but the Psalter, or Breviary, or Hours, they might have; but by no means in the vulgar Language. This is called by D'achery and Labbe the Council of Tho­louse, Labb. Concil. To. 11. p. 427. but in truth it was nothing else but an Order of the Inquisition, as will appear to any one that reads it. And the Inquisition ought to have the Honour of it, both in France and Spain. Which Prohibition hath been so grate­full to some Divines of the Church of Rome, that Cochlaeus calls it pious, just, rea­sonable, Cochl. c. Alex. Alesium, A. D. 1533. Andrad. Defens. Concil. Trident. l. 4. wholsom and necessary; Andradius thinks the taking of it away would be destructive to Faith; Ledesma saith, the Ledesma de Div. Script. quavis [...]ingua non leg. p. 155. true Catholicks do not desire it, and bad ought not to be gratified with it. Petrus Sutor, a Carthusian Doctour, calls the Pet. Sutor de Tralatione Bibliae, p. 99. p. 96. Translating Scripture into the vulgar Languages, a rash, useless and dangerous thing; and he gives the true Reason of it, viz. that the People will be apt to murmur when they see things required as from the Apostles, which they cannot find a word of in Scripture. And when all is said on this Subject that can be, by men of more Art, this is the plainest and honestest Reason for such a Prohibition; but I hope I have made it appear it is not built on any Catholick Tradition.

IV. Of the Merit of Good Works.

The Council of Trent Sess. 6. c. 16. declares, That the Good Works of justified Persons do truly deserve Eternal Life; and Can. 3 [...]. an Anathema is denounced against him that denies them to be meritorious, or that a justified Per­son by them doth not truly merit Increase of Grace, and Happiness, and Eternal Life.

The Council hath not thought fit to declare what it means by truly meriting; but certainly it must be opposed to an improper kind of Meriting, and what that is we must learn from the Divines of the Church of Rome.

1. Some say, That some of the Fathers speak of an improper kind of Merit, which is no more than the due Means for the attaining of Happiness as the End. So Vega confesses they often use the word Merit, where Vega de Ju­stif. l. 8. c. 8. there is no Reason for Merit, either by way of Congruity or Condignity. Therefore, where there is true Merit there must be a proper Reason for it. And the Council of Trent being designed to condemn some prevailing Opinions at that time, among those they called Hereticks, this As­sertion of true Merit must be levelled against some Doc­trine of theirs; but they held Good Works to be necessary as Means to an end, and therefore this could not be the meaning of the Council.

Suarez saith, the words of the Council ought to be speci­ally Suarez de Grat. l. 12. c. 1 n. 8. observed, which are, that there is nothing wanting in the good works of justified Persons, ut vere promeruisse censeantur; and therefore no Metaphorical or improper, but that which by the Sense of the Church of Rome was ac­counted true Merit in opposition to what was said by those accounted Hereticks must be understood thereby.

[Page 60] 2. Others say, that a meer Congruity arising from the Promise and Favour of God in rewarding the acts of his Grace in justified Persons cannot be the proper Merit in­tended by the Council. And that for these Reasons.

1. Suarez observes that although the Council avoids Suarez de G [...]t. l. 12. c. 1. [...]. 12. the Terms ex Condigno, yet because it still uses the words vere mereri, it implies something more than mere Congru­ity; and because it speaks of meriting the Increase of Grace, and not the first Grace; now a Congruity is allowed for the first Grace, which it excludes by mentioning the In­crease. And withal, it brings places to prove that the giv­ing the Reward must be a Retribution of Justice, and if so, the merit must be more than that of Congruity.

2. Because God's Promise doth not give any Intrinsick value to the Nature of the Act; no more than his threat­ning doth increase the Nature of Guilt. If the King of Persia had promised a Province to him that gave him a draught of Water, the Act it self had been no more meri­torious; but it only shewed the Munificence of the Prince; no more do God's Promises of Eternal Life add any merit to the Acts of Grace, but onely set forth the Infinite Boun­ty of the Promiser.

3. In the Conference at Ratisbon (the year this De­cree passed) by the Emperour's Order the Protestant Par­ty did yield, that by virtue of God's Promise the Reward of Eternal Life was due to justified Persons; as a Father Disputat. Ra­tisbonae An. 1546. p. 568. promising a great Reward to his Son for his pains in study­ing, makes it become due to him, although there be no pro­portion between them. And if no more were meant by Merit of Congruity, than that it was very agreeable to the Di­vine Nature to reward the Acts of his own Grace with an infinite Reward, they would yield this too.

[Page 61] 4. Cardinal Pallavicini gives us the plain and true Hist. Conc. Trid. l. 8. c. 4. n. 4. meaning of the Council, viz. that a Merit de Congruo was allowed for Works before Justification; but for Works after, they all agreed, he saith, that there was a Merit de condigno in them both for increase of Grace and Eternal Glory. By Merit de condigno is meant such an intrinsick value in the nature of the Act as makes the Reward in Justice to be due to it.

Some call one of these, Meritum secundum quid; which Rich. de Me­dia. Vill. in l. 2. sent. dist. 17. art. 2. q. 1. Nich. de Or­bellis in 3. sent. dist. 27. is the same with de congruo; which really deserves no reward, but receives it onely from the liberality of the Giver; and this hath not truly, say they, the notion of Merit; but that which makes the reward due is simple and true Merit, when it doth not come merely from the Kindness of the Giver, but from Respect to the worthi­ness of the Action and the Doer, and this is de condigno.

Let us now see what Catholick Tradition there was for this Doctrine, and whether this were taught them by their Fathers in a continued succession down from the Apostles times.

But that there was a change as to the sense of the Church in this matter, I shall prove in the first place from an Office which was allow'd in the Church before, and forbidden after. It was an Office with respect to dying Persons, wherein are these Questions.

Q. Dost thou believe that thou shalt Credis non pr [...]priis meritis, sed pass [...] Domini nostri Jesu Christi virtute & merito ad gloriam per­venire? come to Heaven, not by thy own Merits, but by the virtue and Merit of Christ's Passion?

A. I do believe it. Credo.

Q. Dost thou believe that Christ died Credis quod Dominus no [...]er Je­s [...]s Christus pro Salute nost [...] m [...]r [...]us sit; & quo [...] [...]x propriis meri [...]is, vel al [...]o in [...] [...]ull [...]s [...] salvari nis [...] in merito p [...]ss [...]nis ejus? for our Salvation, and that none can be saved by their own Merits, or any other way but by the Merits of his Passion?

A. I do believe it. Credo.

[Page 62] Now when the Indices Expurgatorii were made in pursuance to the Order of the Council of Trent, this pas­sage was no longer endured. For, in the Roman Index the Ordo baptizandi, wherein this Question was, is for­bidden till it were Corrected. But the Spanish Indices explain the mystery; that of Cardinal Quiroga saith expresly, those Questions and Answers must be blotted out; and the like we find in the Index of Soto major and San­ [...]oval. What now is the Reason, that such Questions and Answers were no longer permitted, if the Churches Tradition continued still the same? Was not this a way to know the Tradition of the Church by the Offices used in it? This was no private Office then first used, but al­though the prohibition mentions one Impression at Ve­nice (as though there had been no more) I have one be­fore me, Printed by Gryphius at Venice two years before that; and long before with the Praeceptorium of Lyra, A. D. 1495. where the Question to the dying Person is in these words, Si credit se Merito Passionis Christi & non propriis ad gloriam pervenire? Et respondeat, Credo. And the same Questions and Answers I have in a Sacer­dotale Romanum Printed by Nicolinus at Venice 1585. Cardinal Hosius says that he had seen these Questions and H [...]. Conf [...]ss. Petricovi, c. 73. p. 144. Answers in the Sacerdotale Romanum and in the Hortulus Animae; and that they were believed to be first prescri­bed by Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury. On what ac­count now, come these things to be prohibited and ex­punged, if the Churches Doctrine and Tradition about this matter, be still the very same? No doubt it was be­lieved that the Council of Trent had now so far declared the Sense of the Church another way, that such Questions and A [...]s [...]rs were no longer to be endured.

But before the Council of Trent the Canons of Colen a­gainst [...] [...]. 16. 2. Hermannus their Bishop, when he published his [Page 63] Reformation, declare, that God's giving Eternal Life up on good Works is ex gratuita dignatione suae clementiae, from the Favour which God vouchsafes to them. Which to my apprehension is inconsistent with the Notion of true Merit in the Works themselves; for if there be any Condignity in them, it cannot be mere Grace and Fa­vour in God to reward them.

The same Canons in their Enchiridion some years be­fore, Enchirid Co­lon. f. 176. 2. when they joyned with their Bishop, call it stupi­dity to think that good Works are rewarded with Eternal Life for any Dignity in the Works themselves. And if there be no dignity in them, there can be no true Me­rit; as the Council of Trent determines with an Ana­thema.

Pope Adrian VI. gives such an account of the Merit Adrian. de Sacr. Eucbar. f. 61. of our Works, that he could never imagine any condig­nity in them to Eternal Life. For, saith he, our Merits are a broken reed, which pierce the hand of him that leans upon them; they are a menstruous Cloth, and our best Acti­ons mixt with impurities; and when we have done all that we can, we are unprofitable Servants.

Petrus de Alliaco Cardinal of Cambray attributes no Pet de Allia­co, in 4. l. Sent. q. 1. art. 1. f. 225. [...]. other effect to good Works than of Causa sine qua non; and saith that the Reward is not to be attributed to any Virtue in them, but to the Will of the Giver. Which I think overthrows any true Merit.

Gabriel Biel attributes the Merit of Good Works not to Bicl in l. 2. sent. dis [...]. 27. art. 1. [...]o [...]. 3. any intrinsecal Goodness in them, but to God's acceptation. Which is in words to assert Merit, and in truth to deny it; for, how can there be true Merit in the Works, if all their value depends upon divine Acceptance?

Thomas Walden charges Wickliff with asserting the Walden. de Sacram. Ti [...]. [...]. c 7. Doctrine of Merit and incouraging men to trust in their own Righteousness, and he quotes Scripture and Fathers [Page 64] against it; and he blames the use of the term of Merit either ex congruo or ex condigno: which he saith was an Invention of some late Schoolmen, and was contrary to the ancient Doctrine of the Church. As he proves, not only from Scripture and Fathers, but from the ancient Offices too: as in the Canon of the Mass, Non aestimator meriti, seá veni [...] quaesumus largitor, &c. Fer. 4. Pass. Ut qui de meritorum qualitate diffidimus, non judicium tuum sed mi­seric [...]rdiam cons [...]quamur. Dom. 2. Adv. Ubi nulla suppe­tunt sufsragia meritorum, tuae nobis indulgentiae succurre praesidtis. How comes the Doctrine condemned in Wickliff to be established in the Council of Trent? For he was blamed for asserting true Merit, and the Council asserts it with an Anathema to those that deny it. And yet we must believe the very same Tradition to have been in the Church all this while.

Vega saith, that Walden speaks against Merits without Grace; but any one that reads him will find it otherwise, Vega i [...]Opu [...]c. Qu. 4. For he produces those passages out of the Fathers against Merits which do suppose Divine Grace, as it were easie to shew; but Friar Walden thought the notion of Merit inconsistent with the Power and Influence of Divine Grace necessary to our best Actions. God, saith he, doth not regard Merit either as to Congruity or Condignity, but his own Grace, and Will, and Mercy.

Marsilius de Ingen who lived before Walden reckons Marfil. in l. 2. [...]. [...]. 1 [...]. up three Opinions about Merit; the first of those who de­nied it, and of this, saith he, Durandus seems to be, and one Job. de Everbaco. The second of those who said that our Works have no merit of themselves, but as informed by d [...]ine Grace, and from the Assistance of the Holy Ghost, so they do t [...]uly merit Eternal Life, and of this Opinion he saith was Thomas de Argentina. The third was, of those who granted that true Merit doth imply an Equa­lity, [Page 65] but then they distinguish Equality, as to Quantity and as to Proportion, and in this latter sense they asserted an Equality. And of this Opinion he saith was Petrus de Tarantasia. But he delivers his own Judgment in these Conclusions.

1. That our Works either considered in themselves or with Divine Grace are not meritorious of Eternal Life ex condigno, which he proves both from Scripture and Reason, viz. because 1. No Man can make God a Debtor to him; for the more Grace he hath the more he is a Debtor to God. Ana 2. He cannot merit of another by what he receives from him. And 3. No man can pay what he owes to God, and therefore can never merit at his hands. 4. No man can merit here so much Grace as to keep him from falling away from Grace; much less then Eternal Life.

2. These works may be said to be meritorious of Eternal Life ex condigno by divine acceptation originally procee­ding from the Merit of Christ's Passion, because that makes them worthy. But this is Christ's Merit and not the true Merit of our Works.

3. Works done by Grace do merit Eternal Life de con­gruo from God's liberal disposition, whereby he hath ap­pointed so to reward them. It beeing agreeable to him to give Glory to them that love him. But this is an impro­per kind of Merit, and can by no means support the Tradition of true Merit.

Durandus utterly denies any true Merit of Man to­wards God; he doth not deny it in a large improper sense Durand. in sent. l. 2. di [...]. 27. q. 2. for such a Condignity in our actions as God hath appoin­ted in order to a Reward; which is by the Grace of God in us; but as it is taken for a free Action to which a Reward is in Justice due; because whatever we doe is more owing to the Grace of God than to our selves; but to make a Debtor to us, we must not only pay an equivalent [Page 76] to what we owe, but we must go beyond it; but to God and our Parents we can never pay an equivalent, much less ex­ceed it. And we can never merit by what God gives us, because the Gift lays a greater Obligation upon us. And n. 14. he saith, the holding the contrary is temerarious and blasphemous.

The two grounds of holding Merit were, the supposing a Proportion between Grace and Glory, and an Equality between Divine Grace and Glory in Vertue, Grace being as the Seed of Glory; and to both these he answers.

To the first, That the giving a Reward upon Merit is no part of distributive, but commutative Justice, because it respects the relation of one thing to another, and not the mere quality of the Person.

To the second, That the Value of an Act is not con­sidered with respect to the first Mover, but to the immedi­ate Agent: and as to Grace being the seed of Glory, it is but a metaphorical expression, and nothing can be drawn from it. So that Durandus concludes true Merit with respect to God to be temerarious, blasphemous and im­possible.

Ockam declares, That after all our good Works God may Ockam in 4. s [...]nt. q. 3. ad secundum. In. l. 1. dist. 17. q. 1. in l. 1. dist. 17. q. 2. without Injustice deny Eternal Life to them who do them; because God can be Debtor to none; and therefore what­ever he doth to us, it is out of mere Grace. And that there can be nothing meritorious in any act of ours, but from the Grace of God freely accepting it. And therefore he must deny any true Merit.

Gregorius Ariminensis saith, That no Act of ours though Greg. Arim. in l. 1. sent. dist. 17. art. 2. coming from Grace to never so great a degree, is meritori­ous with God ex condigno of any Reward either Temporal or Eternal; because every such Act is a Gift of God; and if it were at all meritorious, yet not as to Eternal Life, because there is no equivalency between them, and there­fore [Page 77] it cannot in Justice be due to it; and consequently if God gives it, he must do it freely. But, saith he, God is said to be just, when he gives bona pro bonis, and mer­ciful, when he gives bona pro malis; not but that he is merciful in both, but because his mercy appears more in the latter; and in the other, it seems like justice in a ge­neral sense from the conformity of the Merit and the Re­ward; but in this particular retribution it is mere Mercy.

Scotus affirms, that all the meritoriousness of our Acts Scot. in l. 1. sent. dist. 17. q 3. n 24. depends on divine Acceptation in order to a Reward; and if it did depend on the intrinsick worth of the Acts, God could not in justice deny the Reward; which is false; and therefore it wholly depends on the good will and favour of God.

Bellarmin is aware of this, and he confesses this to be Bell. de Just. l. 5. c. 17. the Opinion of Scotus and of other old Schoolmen. But how then do they hold the Doctrine and Tradition of true Merit? He holds that good Works are properly and truly good. So do we, and yet deny Merit. But he grants, that he denies that they bear any proportion to Eternal Life, and therefore they cannot be truly merito­rious of it. Bellarmin himself asserts that without the divine Promise good Works have a proportion to Eternal Life, and this he saw was necessary to defend the Do­ctrine of the Council of Trent; but then he adds, that there is no obligation on God's part to reward in such a manner without a Promise. Now here are two hard Points, 1. To make it appear that there is such a meri­toriousness in good Works without a Divine Promise. 2. That if there were so, there is no Obligation on God to reward such Acts in point of Justice. The former is so much harder to do from what he had proved before, c. 14. Viz. that they are not meritorious without a Promise; [Page 68] and here he proves that they have no proportion to the Reward, from Scripture, Fathers and Reason; because there is no Obligation on God to do it, either from com­mutative or distributive justice; and because we are God's Servants. These are good Arguments against himself for how can such Acts then become meritorious without a Promise? If there be no proportion or equality on Man's part, no Justice on God's part to reward, how can they possibly be meritorious? But this is too deep for me to comprehend. My business is Tradition, and I have evidently proved that there was no Tradition even in the Church of Rome for the true Merit defined by the Council of Trent. It were easie to carry this point higher, by she wing that the Fathers knew nothing of this Doctrine, but that hath been done by many already, and it is needless in so plain a case.

But I am now to give an account by what Steps and Occasions this Doctrine came to be established.

1. From the common Use of the word Merit with the Fathers and others, in another sense than it signi­fied at first. The original signification of it is Wages Jos. Scalig. in Varr. de L. L. p. 172. bud. in Pandect. pag. 362. Plir [...]. ep. l. 1. 8. paid in consideration of Service; and from thence Soul­diers were said merere (as Budaeus observes, and thence came the word merces) who truly deserved their pay by their labour and hazard; but by degrees it came to signifie no more than merely to attain a thing; which is some­times used by good Authors; but in the declension of the Latin Tongue no sense of this word was more com­mon than this, especially among Ecclesiastical Writers. Who frequently used it in a sense wherein it was impos­sible to understand it in its original signification; and it cannot imply so much as digne consequi, as in the in­stance brought by Cassander; when St. Cyprian renders Cassand. in Hymn. Eccl. p. 179. those words of St. Paul, Misericordiam merui, which we [Page 69] render, I obtained Mercy; but the Council of Trent al­lows there could be no true Merit here. And St. Au­gustin Aug. in Joh. Tr. 31. n. 9. saith of those who murdered the Son of God, Illi veniam meruerunt qui Christum occiderunt. And so the vulgar Latin often uses it, Gen. 4. 13. major est iniquitas mea quam ut veniam merear. Jos. 11. 20. & non mererentur ullam Clementiam. And in that sense it hath been used in the Hymns and other Offices of the Church, as in that expression, O felix culpa quae talem ac tantum meruit ha­bere Redemptorem! where it cannot be denied that the word is used in an improper Sense.

2. When the School Divines set themselves to explain the Mysteries of Theology, this plain and easie, but impro­per sense of Merit, would not go down with som of them; but they endeavoured to make out the notion of Merit with respect to God, in its proper and original Sense. The last considerable Writer before the Scholastick Age, was St. Bernard, and he pretended not to find out any such proportion between the best Works and Eternal Life, that God should be bound in Neque enim talia sunt hominion merita, ut propter ea vita aeterna deberetur ex jure, aut Deus injuri­am aliquam faceret, nisi eam dona­ret. Nam ut taceam quod merita [...]mnia Dona Dei sunt, & ita bomo m [...]gis propter ipsa Deo debitor est, qu [...]m Deus bomini, quid sunt meri­ta omnia ad tantam gloriam? Ber­nard Se [...]m. 1. de Aunur. Bellarm. de Justis. l. 5. c. 6. justice to bestow it as a Recompence for them; and the Reason he gives is plain and strong, because those things men pre­tend to merit by, are themselves the Gifts of God's Grace, and so by them they are more bound to God, than God to them; but besides, what are all mens merits to Eter­nal Glory? St. Bernard doth not speak of Merits without Grace, but with the supposition of it; and Bellarmin wisely left out the latter part, that he might seem to answer the former.

Hugo de Sancto Victore lived in the same Age, who first shewed the way to School Divinity, and upon the Hugo de S. [...]ict. Annot. Elucidator in Rom. same place which St. Bernard speaks of, Non sunt condig [Page 80] nae, &c. he puts the Question, how any temporal Acts can merit that which is eternal? And he denies any Condigni­ty, because there is more in the Reward than there was in the Merit; but then he adds, that there may be a three­fold comparison of things; either as to themselves, as a Horse for a Horse, Money for Money; or according to equi­ty, either in punishments or rewards; or by Pact or Agree­ment, as when a good summ is promised for a little work; and this, saith he, God hath made known to Mankind as to future rewards and punishments. Which plainly shews, he understood nothing of the proportion between Acts of Grace, and an Eternal Happiness; but resolved all into the Favour and Mercy of God.

Peter Lombard, called the Master of the Sentences, Lomb. Sent. l. 2. dist. 27. saith, Nothing of any Condignity or Proportion in our works to the Reward; but, he saith, they are themselves God's Gifts, and that the Reward it self is from the Grace of God, and quotes the noted Saying of St. Augustin, Cum coronat Deus merita nostra, nihil aliud coronat quam dona sua. But still this is nothing but Grace and Favour in God, first in enabling us to do good Works, and then in rewarding them.

Bandinus wrote a Book of the Sentences much about the time P. Lombard did, with so much agreement of Method and Expressions, that it is not known which took from the other. Genebrard hath produced this passage Genebrard. de Trinit. l. 3. p. 312. out of him, Debet, inciviliter de Deo dicitur, quia nihil omnino nobis debet, nisi ex promisso. If it be so rude to say God owes any thing to his Creatures but by promise, he could not imagine any Condignity in good Works, to which a Reward is due in Justice. And Genebrard thinks he had reason to deny, that God can be made a Debtor to us by any of our Works.

[Page 81] Robertus Pullus, who wrote another Book of the Sen­tences Pull. Sentent. Part. 1. c. 13. about the same time, mentioning that place, Non sunt condignae, &c. he saith, because our Works are not suf­ficient, being small and temporal, God by his Mercy makes it up; which not onely shews that God doth reward be­yond our merit, but that there is no proportion between the best Works and Eternal Glory.

But by the time of Gulielmus Antissiodorensis, there were two Parties in the Church about this point; some, Guliel. Antis. l. 3. tr. 12. q. 2. de m [...] ­rito virt. he saith, denied any Merit of Eternal Life, ex condigno, and others asserted it; and after laying down the Argu­ments on both sides, he concludes for the Affirmative; but in Answer to the place, Non sunt condignae, &c. he saith they are not ad proportionaliter merendum, but they are ad simpliciter merendum; so that still he denied any Proportion, though he held simple Merit.

But Thomas Aquinas coming after him, denies that 1. 2. q. 114. art. 1. there can be any simple Merit with respect to God, because that cannot be where there is so great inequality; and so there can be no equal Justice between them, but ac [...]ording to a proportion; which he afterwards explains, viz. as to the substance and Freedom of our good Works there is onely art. 3. a Congruity; but as they proceed from Divine Grace, so they are meritorious of Eternal Life, ex condigno.

This Doctrine had some followers in the Schools, but not many in comparison of those who opposed it, as ap­pears by what is said already.

Richardus de Mediavilla, though a Franciscan, follows Richard. in Sent. l. 2. dist. 27. art. 2. Q. 3. herein the Doctrine of Aquinas, and asserts, that by Acts of Free Will, informed by Grace, a man may merit Eternal Life, ex condigno, and he adds somewhat more, potest certissime; and he uses the same Answers to the Obje­ctions which the other did.

[Page 72] And Nich. de Orbellis follows Richardus, so that Aqui­nas Nich. deOrb. in Sent. l. 2. dist. 27. his Doctrine had prevailed beyond his own School.

But it was as vehemently opposed by others of that Fraternity, among whom Cardinal Hosius mentions Ste­phanus Brulifer, who maintained, that no Act of Grace, Hos. Confess. Petrico c. 73. p. 141. how good soever, was worthy of Eternal Life.

Paulus Burgensis, though he is said to have been con­verted from being a Jew, by reading Aquinas, yet utter­ly P. Burg. ad­dit. ad Lyram in Ps. 35. dissented from him in this matter: For he saith, that no man can by the Ordinary assistance of Grace Merit Eternal Life ex condigno, and therefore the Mercy of God is most seen in Heaven.

However the Reputation of Aquinas might gain upon some, yet this was very far then from being a Catholick Tradition.

But no Council ever interposed its Authority in this matter, till the Council of Trent, which resolved to car­ry the Points in difference to the height, and to establish every thing that was questioned. Nothing had been more easie than to have given satisfaction in this matter, consi­dering what Pighius and Contarenus, and even Genebrard, had yielded in it; but there the Rule was, that every thing that was disputed, must be determined first, and then defended.

And so it hath happened with this Decree, which, lest we should think the matter capable of softening, hath been since asserted in the highest manner. Bellarmin asserts Good Works of themselves, and not merely by com­pact, Bell. de justif. l. 5. c. 17. to be meritorious of Eternal Life, so that in them there is a certain Proportion and Equality to Eternal Life.

Costerus saith, that in Works of Grace, there is an equa­lity Coster. En­ [...]rid. p. 294. between the Work and the Reward.

[Page 73] Suarez, that they have an intrinsecal Dignity, whereby Suarez. de Grat. l. 12. c. 1. n. 18. Vasquez in 1. 2. Disp. 213. c. 5. they become worthy of Eternal Life.

Vasquez, that there is an Equality of Dignity between Good Works and Eternal Life, without which a Promise could not make true Merit.

The Rhemists say, that good Works are truly and pro­perly Bhemists on 2 Tim. 4. 8. meritorious, and justly worthy of Everlasting Life; and that thereupon Heaven is the just Due, and just Sti­pend, Crown or Recompence, which God by his Justice oweth to the Persons so doing by his Grace.

And again, that Good Works are meritorious, and the very cause of Salvation. so far that God should be unjust, On Heb. 6. 8. if he rendred not Heaven for the same.

Phil. Gamachaeus, a late Professour of Divinity in the Sorbon, speaks it round­ly, Gamach. in 1. 2. Th. Q. 114. c. 2. Concil. 2. Omnes Catholici fatentur justos suis bonis operibus mereri glo­riam de Condigno. that the Council of Trent did plainly mean to establish Merit ex condigno, and that all Catholicks are agreed in it.

The last Defender of the Council of Trent within these Aug. Reding Defens. Conc. Trident. Tr. 4. se [...]t. 2. ad sess. 6. c. 1. few years, saith, That there is an intrinsecal Condignity in good Works, whereby they bear a proportion commensurate with the Glory of Heaven. And without such Doctrine as this, he doth not think the Council of Trent can be defen­ded in this matter.

If after all it be said, that this is a mere subtilty concer­ning the proportion an Act of Grace bears to the state of Glory; I answer, the more to blame they, who have made and imposed it as a matter of Faith, as the Council of Trent hath done with an Anathema, and that without any pretence from Catholick Tradition.

But what made the Council of Trent so much concerned for a Scholastick Subtilty? There was a deep Mystery lay in this, They were wise enough to frame the Decree so, as to avoid Offence, and to make it appear plausible, [Page 74] but it was enough to the People to understand that the Merit of Good Works was allowed, and they were to be­lieve the Priests, both as to the Good Works they were to do, and as to the putting them into a state of Grace, to make them capable of meriting. And this was the true Reason of the Anathema, against those who should deny the true Merit of Good Works.

V. Of the Number of Sacraments.

The Council of Trent pronounces an Anathema in these words, If any one saith that the Sacraments of the new Law were not all appointed by Jesus Christ our Lord, or Sess. 7. Can. 1. that they were more or fewer than Seven, viz. Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance, Extreme Unction, Or­ders and Matrimony, or that any one of these is not truly and properly a Sacrament, let him be Anathema.

But what is it to be truly and properly a Sacrament?

It had been very reasonable to have defined a Sacra­ment first truly and properly, before such an Anathema pas­sed. But that defect may be said to be supplied by the Roman Catechism, published by Authority of the Coun­cil; and there we are told, that a Sacrament is a sensible C [...]tech. Tri­dent. Part. 2. n. 10. thing, which by divine Institution hath a power of causing as well as signifying holiness and righteousness. So that to a true and proper Sacrament two things are necessary:

  • 1. That it be of Divine Institution.
  • 2. That it confer Grace on those who partake of it.

And by these we must examin the Catholick Tradition about the number of Sacraments.

Bellarmin saith, that all their Divines, and the whole Church for 500 years, viz. from the time of the Master of Bell. de Sa­ [...]am. l. 2. [...]. 25. the Sentences, have agreed in the Number of the seven Sa­craments.

[Page 75] Here we see is a bold Appeal to Tradition for 500 years; but although, if it were proved, it cannot be sufficient to prove an Apostolical Tradition; for the Fathers might for a thousand years have held the contrary; and I do not think one clear Testimony can be produced out of Anti­quity for that number of Sacraments, truly so called; yet I shall at present wholly wave the debate of the former times, and confine my self to Bellarmin's 500 years; and I hope to make it appear there was no Universal Tradi­tion for it within his own time.

For Alexander Hales (who wrote, saith Possevin, his Summ of Divinity by order of Innocent IV. and it was ap­proved by Alexander IV. with seventy Divines,) affirms, there were but Four In quatuor quae sunt propriè dict [...] Sacramenta novae legis est forma in­stituta à Domino vel ab Ecclesia. Alex. Halens. Part. 4. q. 5. M. 3. 4. 2. proper Sacraments; now if this were the Catholick Tradition then, That there were Seven proper Sacraments, how could this Doctrine pass, and be so highly approved? He saith far­ther, that Christ himself only appointed two, viz. Baptism and the Lord's Supper; and for the rest, he saith, it may Memb. 2. a. 1. be presumed the Apostles did appoint them by Christ's Di­rection, or by divine I [...]spiration. But how can that be, when he saith, the Form even of those he calls proper Sa­craments, was either appointed by our Lord or by the Church? How can such Sacraments be of divine Institution, whose very Form is appointed by the Church? He puts the Question himself, why Christ appointed the Form only of Two Sacraments, when all the Grace of the Sacraments comes from him? He answers, because these are the prin­cipal Memb. 3. a. 2. sect. 3. Sacraments which unite the whole man in the body of the Church by Faith and Charity. But yet this doth not clear the Difficulty, how those can be proper Sacra­ments, whose Form is not of Divine Institution; as he [Page 76] grants in the Sacrament of Penance and Orders, the Form is of the Churches Appointment.

And this will not only reach to this gre [...]t School Di­vine, but to as many others as hold it in the Churches Power to appoint or alter the Matter and Form of some of those they call Sacraments. For, however they may use the Name, they can never agree with the Council of Trent in the Nature of the Seven Sacraments, which sup­poses them to be of Divine Institution, as to Matter and Form. And so the Divines of the Church of Rome have agreed since the Council of Trent.

Bellarmin hath a Chapter on purpose to shew, that the [...]ell. de Sacr. l. 1. [...]. 21. Matter and Form of Sacraments are so certain and deter­minate, that nothing can be changed in them; and this de­termination must be by God himself. Which, he saith, is most certain among them; and he proves it by a substan­tial Reason, viz. because the Sacraments are the Causes of Grace; and no one can give Grace but God, and therefore none else can appoint the Essentials of Sacraments but he, and therefore he calls it Sacrilege to change even the mat­ter of Sacraments.

Suarez asserts, that both the Matter and Form of Sacra­ments Suarez. in 3. p. Tb. Tom. 3. Disp. 2. sect. 3. are determined by Christ's Institution, and as they are determined by him, they are necessary to the making of Sacraments. And this (he saith) absolutely speaking, is de Pide, or an Article of Faith. And he proves it from the manner of Christ's instituting Baptism and the Eucha­rist, and he urges the same Reason, because Christ only can conf [...]r Grace by the Sacraments, and therefore he must appoint the Matter and Form of them.

Cardinal Lugo affirms, that Christ hath appointed both Lugo de [...]. D [...]p. [...]. [...]. 5. Matter and Form of the Sacraments, which he proves from the Council of Trent. He thinks Christ might have gran­t [...]d a Commission to his Church to appoint Sacraments, [Page 77] which he would make efficacious, but he reither believes that he hath done it, or that it was fitting to be done.

Petr [...]s à Sancto Joseph saith, that although the Council P [...]t. à Sanct. Joseph. Idea Theol. Sacr. l. 1. c. 3. of Trent doth not expresly affirm the Sacraments to be im­mediately instituted by Christ; yet it is to be so under­stood. And although the Church may appoint Sacramenta­lia, i. e. Rites about the Sacraments; yet Christ himself must appoint the Sacraments themselves; and he concludes, that no Creature can have authority to make Sacraments con­ferring Grace; and therefore he declares that Christ did appoint the Forms of all the Sacraments himself, although we do not read them in Scripture.

If now it appears that some even of the Church of Rome before the Council of Trent, did think it in the Churches Power to appoint or alter the Matter and Form of some of those they called Sacraments, then it will evi­dently follow they had not the same Tradition about the Seven Sacraments which is there deliver'd.

Of Chrism.

The Council of Trent declares the matter of Confir­mation Conc. Tri [...]. De Confirm. Can 2. Conc. Florent. Decret. U [...]is­nis. to be Chrism, viz. a Composition made of O [...]l of Olive and Balsam; the one to signifie the clearness of Con­science, the other the Odour of a good Fame, saith the Coun­cil of Florence. But where was this Chrism appointed by Christ? Marsilius saith from Petrus Aureolus, that Ma [...]il. in s [...]. l. 4 q. 5. 4. 1. there was a Controversie between the Divines and Ca [...]ists about this matter; and the latter affirmed that Chris [...] was not appointed by Christ, but ast [...]wards by th [...] Church; and that the Pope could dispense with it; which he could not do if it were of Christ's Insti [...]ion.

Petrus Aureolus was himself a great Man in the Church Aureol in 4. d. 7. q. 1. of Rome; and after he had mentioned this difference, and [Page 78] named one Brocardus (or Bernardus) with other Cano­nists for it; he doth not affirm the contrary to be a Ca­tholick Tradition; but himself asserts the Chrism not to be necessary to the Sacrament of Confirmation; which he must have done if he had believed it of Divine Institu­tion.

Gregory de Valentia on the occasion of this Opinion of Greg de Val. Tom. 4. Q. 5. Pun [...]. 2. the Canonists, that Confirmation might be without Chrism, saith two notable things. 1. That they were guilty of Heresie therein: for which he quotes Dominicus Soto. 2. That he thinks there were no Canonists left of that mind. If not, the Change was greater; since it is certain they were of that Opinion before. For Guido Bri­anson Gui [...]o Bri­anson in 4. sent. q. 5. Con [...]. 1. attests, that there was a difference between the Di­vines and Canonists about this matter; for Bernard the Glosser and others held, that Chrism was not necessary to it, because it was neither appointed by Christ nor his Apo­stles, but in some ancient Councils.

Guil. Antissiodorensis long before mentions the Opinion Guil. Antis. in l. 4. tract. 9. of those who said that Chrism was appointed by the Church after the Apostles times; and that they confirmed only by imposition of hands; but he doth not condemn it; only he thinks it better to hold that the Apostles used Chrism, although we never read that they did it. But he doth not lay that Opinion only on the Canonists; for there were Divines of great note of the same. For,

Bonaventure saith, that the Apostles made use neither of Bonav. in 4. d. 7. a. 1. q. 2. their Matter nor Form in their Confirmation; and his Re­solution is, that they were appointed by the Governors of the Church afterwards; as his Master Alexander of Hale had Alex. p. 4. q. 9. m [...]mb. 1. said besore him, who attributes the Institution of both to a Council of Meaux.

Cardinal de Vitriaco saith, that Confirmation by Imposi­tion J [...]. de Vitr. Hi [...]. occid. c. [...]7. of Hands was srom the Apostles; but by Chrism from [Page 79] the Church; for we do not read that the Apostles used it. Thomas Aquinas confesses there were different Opinions Aq. p. 3. q. 72. a 1. Resp. ad 1. about the Institution of this Sacrament; some held that it was not instituted by Christ nor his Apostles, but afterwards in a certain Council. But he never blames these for con­tradicting Catholick Tradition although he dislikes their Opinion.

Cajetan on Aquinas saith, that Chrism with Balsam was appointed by the Church after the Primitive times; and yet now, this must be believed to be essential to this Sa­crament; and by Conink it seems to be heretical to deny Conink de Sacram. q. 72. a. 3. dab. 1. it. For he affirms, that it seems to be an Article of Faith that Confirmation must be with Chrism, and no Ca­tholick, he saith, now denies it. Which shews, that he believed the sense of the Church not to have been always the same about it.

But others speak out, as Gregory de Valentia, Suarez, Filliucius and Tanner, who say absolutely, it is now a matter of Faith to hold Chrism to be essential to Confirma­tion; and that it is now not onely erroneous but heretical to deny it. Their Testimonies are at large produced by Petrus Aurelius, or the famous Abbat of S. Cyran. And even he grants it to be Heresie since the Council of Trent; Petr. Aurel. Oper. p 546, 547. p. 567. but he yields that Alensis, Bonaventure and de Vitri [...]co all held that Opinion, which was made Heresie by it. From whence it follows, that there hath been a change in the Doctrine of the Roman Church about Confirma­tion by Chrism. For if it be Heresie now to assert that which was denied without any reproach before, the Tra­dition cannot be said to continue the same.

Thus we have seen there was no certain Tradition for the Matter of this Sacrament, and as little is there for the Form of it. Which is, Consigno te signo Crucis, & confirmo te Chrismate salutis in nomine Patris, &c. But [Page 80] Sirmondus produces another Form out of S. Ambrose, Sirmo [...], Ant. 2. p. 64. Deus Pater omnipotens, qui te regeneravit ex Aqua & Spirit [...] Sancto, concessitque tibi peccata tua, ipse te ungat in vitam aeternam. And from thence concludes the pre­sent Form not to be ancient; and he confesses that both Matter and Form of this Sacrament are changed. Which was an ingenuous Confession; but his adversary takes p. 6 [...]. this Advantage from it; that then the Sacrament it self Petr. A [...]rel. Op. p. 5 [...]7. must [...]e changed, if both Matter and Form were; and then the Church must be a very unfaithful keeper of Tradition; which I think is unanswerable. Suarez proposes the Ob­jection Suarez. To. 3. q. 3. p. Th. [...]. 72. Disp. 33. sect. 5. fairly both as to the Matter and Form of this Sa­crament, that we read nothing of them in Scripture, and Tradition is very various about them; but his Answer is very insufficient, viz. that though it be not in Scripture, yet they have them by Tradition from the Apostles; now that is the very thing which Sirmondus disproves, and shew that the Church of Rome is clearly gone off from Tradition here both as to Matter and Form.

Of Orders.

I proceed to the Sacrament of Orders. It it impossible for those of the Church of Rome to prove this a true and proper Sacrament, on their own Grounds. For, they assert that such a one must have Matter and Form ap­pointed by Christ; but that which they account the Mat­ter and Form of Orders were neither of them of Christ's Institution. The Council of Florence, they say, hath de­clared D [...]ret. Uni [...]nis. both; the matter is that, by the delivery whereof the Order is confer'd, as that of Priesthood by the delivery of the Chalice with the Wine, and the Paten with the Bread; and the Form is, Accipe potestatem offerendi Sacrificium in Ecclesia pro vivis & mortuis. Now if neither of these [Page 81] be owned by themselves to have been appointed by Christ, then it necessarily follows, that they cannot hold this to be a true and proper Sacrament. Imposition of hands they grant was used by the Apostles, and still con­tinued in the Christian Church; and Bellarmin confes­ses Bell. de Sacr. Ordinis, l. 1. c. 9. that nothing else can be proved by Scripture to be the external Symbol in this Sacrament. And others are for­ced to say, that Christ hath not determined the Matter and Form of this Sacrament particularly, but hath left a latitude in it for the Church to determin it. Which in my opinion is clear giving up the Cause, as to this Sa­crament.

It is observed by Arcudius, that the Council of Trent Arcud. de Sa­cram. l. 6. c. 4. doth not declare the particular Matter and Form of this Sacrament, but only in general, that it is performed by words and external signs, Sess. 23. c. 3. From whence he infers, that the outward Sign was left to the Churches determination; and he saith, that Christ did particularly appoint the Matter and Form of some Sacraments, as of Baptism, and the Lord's Supper, and Extreme Unction, but not of others; and therefore in the Sacrament of Or­ders, he saith, Christ determined no more but that it should be conveyed by some visible sign; and so it may be either by the delivering the Vessels, or by the imposition of hands, or both. But we are to consider that the Council of Florence was received by the Council of Trent; and that it is impossible to reconcile this Doctrin with the general Definition of a Sacrament by the Roman Cate­chism, viz. that it is a sensible thing which by the Insti­tution of Christ hath a power of causing as well as signi­fying Grace; which implies that the external Sign which conveys Grace must be appointed by the Authour of the Sacrament it self; or else the Church must have Power to annex Divine Grace to its own appointments. [Page 82] But here lies the main difficulty, the Church of Rome hath altered both Matter and Form of this Sacrament from the primitive Institution; and yet it dares not dis­allow the Ordinations made without them, as is noto­rious in the Case of the Greek Church; and therefore they have been forced to allow this latitude as to the Matter and Form of this Sacrament; although such an allowance doth really overthrow its being a true and proper Sacrament on their own grounds.

Yet this Doctrine hath very much prevailed of late among their chief Writers. Cardinal Lugo confesses, L [...]go de Sac. Disp. 2. sect. 5. n. 85. that of old Priesthood was conferred by imposition of Hands with suitable Words; and he saw it himself so done at Rome, without delivering the Vessels by Catholick Greek Bishops. He saith farther, that the Fathers and Councils n. 92. are so plain for the conferring Priesthood by imposition of hands, that no one can deny it; but yet he must justifie the Roman Church in assuming new Matter and Form, which he doth by asserting that Christ left the Church at liberty as to them.

Nicol. Ysambertus debates the point at large, and his Resolution of it is, that Christ determined only the gene­ral Ysambert. de Sacram. Ordi­nis, Disp. 3. Art. 6. matter, but the particular sign was left to the Church; and he proves by Induction that the Church hath appointed the external sign in this Sacrament, and as to the Order of Priesthood he proves that Imposition of hands was of old an essential part of it, but now it is only accidental.

Franciscus Hallier confesses the Matter of this Sacra­ment Hallier de Sa­cris Elect. & Ordinat. sect. 2. c. 2. art. 1. to have been different in different times. In the Apostles times and many Ages after, hardly any other can be found but imposition of hands, as he proves from Scripture and Fathers. He carries his proofs down as low as the Synod of Aken in the time of Ludovicus Pius, and the Council of M [...]aux, A. D. 845. but afterwards [Page 83] he saith, that by the Council of Florence and the common p. 439. Opinion of their Divines, the delivery of the Vessels is the essential matter of this Sacrament. Here we find a plain change in the Matter of a Sacrament owned after the continuance of above 800 years; and yet we must be­lieve the Tradition of this Church to have been always the same. Which is impossible by the Confession of their own Writer. He cannot tell just the time when the change was made, but he concludes it was before the time of the Vetus Ordo Romanus, which mentions the Vessels.

Petrus a Sancto Joseph saith, that by Christ's Institution Petr. à Sanct. Joseph, Idea Theod. Sacr. l. 4. c. 1. p. 396. there is a latitude allowed in the matter of Orders; but he shews not where; but he thinks, of it self it consists in the delivery of the Vessels, but by the Pope's permission Imposition of Hands may be sufficient. Which is a Do­ctrin which hath neither Scripture, Reason nor Tradi­tion for it.

Joh. Morinus shews that there are five Opinions in the Morin. de Sacris Ordin. Part. 3. Ex. ercit. 7. c. 1. Church of Rome about the matter of this Sacrament. The first and most common is that it consists in the deli­very of the Vessels. The second, that Imposition of Hands together with that makes up the matter. The third, that they convey two different powers. The fourth, that Unction with Imposition of Hands is the matter. The fifth, that Im­position of Hands alone is it; and this, saith he, the whole Church, Greek and Latin, ever owned; but he saith, he can bring two demonstrations against the first, i. e. against the general sense of the now Roman Church. 1. From the Practice of the Greek Church, which never used it. 2. From the old Rituals of the Latin Church, which do not mention them; and he names some above 800 years old; and in none of them he finds either the Matter or Form of this Sacrament, as it is now practised in the [Page 84] Church of Rome; nor in Isidore, Alcuinus, Amalarius, Rabanus Maurus, Valafridus Strabo, although they wrote purposely about these things. He thinks it was first re­ceived into the publick Offices in the tenth Age. After­wards he saith, he wonders how it came about that any c. 3. n. 1. should place the essential Matter of Ordination only in de­livery of the Vessels, and exclude the Imposition of Hands, which alone is mentioned by Scripture and Fathers. And again he saith, it strikes him with astonishment that there should be such an alteration, both as to Matter and Form. n. 6. c. 6. And at last he saith, Christ hath determined no particular Matter and Form in this Sacrament. n. 2.

But still the Difficulty returns, how this can be a true and proper Sacrament, whose Matter and Form depend on divine Institution, when they confess there was no divine Institution for the Matter and Form in Or­ders?

Bellarmin (as is proved before) hath a Chapter on purpose to prove that the Matter and Form of Sacraments Bell. de Sa­cram. l. 1. c. 24. are so determin'd, that it is not lawful to add, diminish or alter them; and he charges it on Luther as a part of his Heresie, that no certain Form of words was required to Sacraments: and he makes it no less than Sacrilege to change the Matter of them. So that all such who hold the Matter and Form in Orders to be mutable, must either charge the Church of Rome with Sacrilege, or deny Or­ders to be a true and proper Sacrament.

Of the Sacrament of Penance.

The next new Sacrament is that of Penance. They are agreed, that Matter and Form are both necessary to a true and proper Sacrament. The Matter is the external or sensible Sign; and what is that in this New Sacrament?

There are two things necessary to the Matter of a Sa­crament:

1. That it be an External and sensible Sign; which S. Augustin calls an Element in that known Expression, Accedat verbum ad Elementum, & fit Sacramentum; which Aug. in Joh. Tr. 80. Bellarmin would have understood only of Baptism there spoken of; but S. Augustin's meaning goes farther, as ap­pears by his following Discourse, and immediately he calls a Sacrament verbum visibile; and therefore cannot be applied to Words as they are heard, for so they have nothing of a Sacramental sign in them. How then can Contrition make up any part of the Matter of a Sacra­ment, when it is not external? How can Confession, when it is no visible sign, nor any permanent thing as an Ele­ment must be? how can satisfaction be any part of the Sacrament, which may be done when the Effect of the Sacrament is over in Absolution?

2. There must be a Resemblance between the Sign and the Thing signified. Which St. Augustin is so peremptory in, that he denies there can be any Sacrament where there St. Aug. [...]. ad Bonifac. is no Resemblance. And from hence, he saith, the Signs take the name of the Thing signified; as after a certain manner the Sacrament of the Body of Christ is the Body of Christ.

And this was looked on as so necessary, that Hugo de Suarez. T [...]m. 3. in 3. C. Q. 60. Disp. 1. a. 3. sect. 4. Sancto Victore and Peter Lombard both put it into the Definition of a Sacrament, as Suarez confesses, viz. that [Page 86] it is the visible appearance of Invisible Grace, which bears the similitude, and is the Cause of it. But this is left out of the Definition in the Roman Catechism, and Suarez thinks it not necessary, for the same Reason; because it is very hard to understand the similitude between words spo­ken in Confession, and the Grace supposed to be given by Ab­solution, any more than in the words of Abrenunciation, and the Grace of Baptism. How can the Act of the Penitent signifie the Grace conveyed in Absolution? For there is no effect of the Sacrament till Absolution, by their own Confession; and therefore the Acts of the Penitent being antecedent to it, and of a different nature from it, can have no such Resemblance with it, as to signifie or repre­sent it.

However the Councils of Florence and Trent have de­clared, Concil Flor. Decr. Union. Concil. Trid. Sess. 14. c. 3. that the Acts of the Penitent, viz. Contrition, Con­fession and Satisfaction, are as the matter in the Sacrament. Quasi materia: What is this quasi materia? Why not, are the matter? Is not true matter necessary to a true Sacra­ment? If there be none true here, then this can be but quasi Sacramentum, as it were a Sacrament, and not truly and properly so. But if it be true matter, why is it not so declared? But common Sense hindred them, and not the difference between the matter here and in other Sa­craments. For in the Definition of Sacraments they were to regard the Truth, and not the kind of Matter. They are not solid and permanent Matter, saith Bellarmin; not Bell. de poenit. l. 1. c. 16. Soto in l. 4. sent. d. 14. q. I. Vasq. in 3. p. [...]. 34 Art. 1. n. 9. Matter externally applied, saith Soto; not any Substance but humane Acts, saith Vasquez; but none of these clear the point. For still if it be true Matter of a Sacrament, why was it not so declared? Why such a term of Diminu­tion added, as all men must understand it, who compare it with the expressions about the other Sacraments?

[Page 87] But they knew very well there was a considerable Par­ty in the Church of Rome, who denied the Acts of the Penitent to be the Matter or Parts of this Sacrament. The Council of Colen (but little before the Council of Trent) Enchirid. Co­lon. f. 180. excludes the Acts of the Penitent from any share in this Sacrament: which Bellarmin denies not, but blames Bell. de poenit. l. 1. c. 16. Gropperus, the supposed Author of the Enchiridion. But Gropperus was thought fit to be a Cardinal as well as Bel­larmin; and certainly knew the Tradition of the Church if there had been any such in this matter. The Council of Florence, it is plain, he thought not to be a sufficient declarer of it. No more did Joh. Major, who after it deni­ed Major. in 4. sent. dist. 14. q. 2. Biel in 4. dist. 14. q. 2. this Sacrament to consist of Matter and form, or that the Acts of the Penitent were the parts of it. So did Ga­briel Biel, who refutes the contrary Opinion, and saith Contrition can be no part, because it is no sensible sign; and satisfaction may be done after it. So that he cuts off two parts in three of the Matter of this pretended Sa­crament.

Guido Brianson, who lived after the Council of Flo­rence Brianson in 4. sent. Q. 8. Concl. 3. supposes no certain Tradition in the Church about this matter; but he sets down both Opinions with their Reasons, and prefers that which excludes the Acts of the Penitent from being parts of the Sacrament; although the Florentine Council had declared the contrary.

Durandus rejects two parts in three of those declared Durand. in l. 4. dist. 16. q. 1. by the two Councils, and for the same Reasons mentioned by Biel.

Ockam absolutely denies all three to be Parts of the Sa­crament. Ockam in 4. sen. q. 8. Scot. in l. 4. sent. dist. 16. Q. 1. And so did Scotus before him; whose words are remarkable, De Poenitentiae Sacramento dico, quod illa tria nullo modo sunt partes ejus, viz. These three are by no means any part of the Sacrament of Penance; and yet the Council of Trent not only declares that they are so, but [Page 88] denounces an Anathema against him that denies them to Cancil. Trid. Sess. 14. de Poenit. Sacr. Can. 4. be required, as the Matter of the Sacrament of Penance. And let any one by this judge what Catholick Tradition it proceeded upon; when some of the greatest Divines in the Church of Rome were of another Opinion.

As to the Form of this Sacrament the Council of Trent denounces an Anathema against thesewho affirm Absolution to be only declarative of the Remission of Sins: and yet Can. 9. I shall prove that this was the more current Doctrin, even in the Church of Rome, up to the Master of the Sentences.

Gabriel Biel saith, the ancient Doctors did commonly follow it; but it was supposed by Scotus, because it seemed B [...]l in 4. dist. 14. 1. 2. [...]ot. 2. to take off from the efficacy of Absolution, and consequent­ly make it no Sacrament, which is a cause of Grace. But af­ter he hath set down Scotus his Arguments, he saith, that Opinion were very desirable, if it had any Foundation in Scripture or Fathers. And to his Arguments he answers, that true Contrition obtains Pardon with God, before Sa­cerdotal Absolution, but not with the Church; and that Contrition supposes a desire of Absolution; which will ne­ver hold to make Absolution to confer the Grace of Re­mission, if the Sin be really forgiven before. For what is the desire of the Penitent to the force of the Sacrament administred by the Priest? And he saith, they all grant, that by true and sufficient Contrition the sin is forgiven without the Sacrament in act, i. e. the actual receiving ab­solution. So that here was an universal Tradition as to the Power of Contrition, but in the other they had diffe­rent Opinions.

Marsilius saith, that God forgives sin upon Contrition [...]. [...]. 4. [...]. [...]. 12. [...]. Authoritatively; the Priests Absolution is ministerial in the Court of Conscience, and before the Church. And those sins which God [...]irst absolves from principally and Authenti­cally, [Page 89] the Priest afterwards absolves from in right of the Church, as its Minister.

Tostatus saith, that the Priests Absolution follows God's. Tostat. De­fens. part. 1. c. 6. Ockam in l. 4. q. 9. a. 4. ad 1. Ockam, that the Priests then bind and loose, when they shew men to be bound or loosed; and for this he relies on the Master of the Sentences.

Thomas de Argentina, that the Power of the Keys doth extend to the Remission of the fault which was done before Thom. de Ar­gent. l. 4. Dist. 18. a 3. by Contrition; but it tends to the Increase of Grace in the Person.

Gulielmus Antissiodore, that Contrition takes away the Gul. Antis. l. 4. f. 254. guilt and punishment of Sin, as to God and Conscience, but not as to the Church, for a man is still bound to undergo the Penance which the Church enjoyns him.

Bonaventure, that Absolution presupposes Grace; for no Priest would absolve any one whom he did not presume God Bonavent. l. 4. dist. 18. q. 1. had absolved before.

Alexander Hales, that where God doth not begin in Ab­solution, Alex. Halens. part 4. q. 21. memb. 3. art. 1. Pet. Lomb. l. 4. dist. 18. part. 1. the Priest cannot make it up.

But the Master of the Sentences himself most fully han­dles this point; and shews from the Fathers, that God alone can remit sin both as to the Fault and the Punishment due to it. And the Power of the Keys, he saith, is like the Priests Judgment about Leprosie in the Levitical Law, God healed the Person, and the Priest declared him healed. Or as our Saviour first raised Lazarus, then gave him to his Disciples to be loosed. He is loosed before God, but not in the face of the Church but by the Priests Judgment. Ano­ther way, he saith, Priests bind by enjoyning Penance, and they loose by remitting it, or readmitting Persons to Com­munion upon performing it.

This Doctrin of Peter Lombard's is none of those in quibus Magister nontenetur; for we see he had followers of great Name, almost to the Council of Trent. But it [Page 90] happened, that both Th. Aquinas and Scotus agreed in op­posing this Doctrin; and the Franciscans and Dominicans bearing greatest sway in the Debates of the Council of Trent, what they agreed in, passed for Catholick Tradi­tion. And Vasquez is in the right when he saith, this Vasquez in 3. Q. 84. A. 3. dub. 2. 17. Doctrin was condemned by the Council of Trent; and so was Scotus, when he said, that it did derogate from the Sacrament of Penance; for in truth it makes it but a no­minal Sacrament, since it hath no Power of conferring Grace; which the Council of Trent makes necessary to a true and proper Sacrament.

The main Point in this Debate is, whether true con­trition be required to Absolution or not? Which Scotus saw well enough and argues accordingly. For none of them deny, that where there is true Contrition, there is immediately an Absolution before God; and if this be re­quired before the Priests Absolution, he can have no more to do, but to pronounce or declare him absolved. But if something less than Contrition do qualifie a Man for Absolution, and by that Grace be conveyed, then the Power of Absolution hath a great and real Effect; for it puts a Man into a State of Grace which he had not been in without it. And from hence came the Opinion, that Attrition with Absolution was sufficient; and they do not understand the Council of Trent's Doctrin of the Sa­crament of Penance, who deny it, as will appear to any one that reads the 4th Chapter of the Sacrament of Pe­nance, and compares it with the 7, and 8 Canons about Sacraments in general. It is true that Contrition is there said to have the first place in the Acts of the Penitent; but observe what follows: True Contrition reconciles a Man to God, before he receives this Sacrament. What hath the Priest then to do, but to declare him reconciled? But it saith not without the desire of it. Suppose not, yet [Page 91] the thing is done upon the desire, & therefore the Priests Power can be no more than declarative. And that such a Desire is so necessary as without Contrition avails not, is more than the Council hath proved, and it is bare­ly supposed, to maintain the Necessity of going to the Priest for Absolution; and so it will be no more than a Precept of the Church, and not a condition of Remission in the Sacrament of Penance. But afterwards, it declares that imperfect Contrition or Attrition doth dispose a Man for the Grace of God in this Sacrament; and by the gene­ral Canons, the Sacraments do confer Grace where Men are disposed. So that the Council of Trent did rightly com­prehend the force of the Power of Absolution, which it gave to the Priest in the Sacrament of Penance.

But what Catholick Tradition could there be for the Doctrin of the Council of Trent in thismatter, when Ha­drian Hadrian Quodlib. q. 5. 3. princip. 6. so little before it declares, it was a great difficul­ty among the Doctors, whether the Keys of Priesthood did extend to the Remission of the Fault? And for the Nega­tive he produces Pet. Lombard, Alex. Alens. and Bona­venture; and saith, that Opinion is probable, because the Priests Power of binding and loosing is equal; and as they cannot bind where God doth not, for they cannot retain the sins of a true Penitent; so neither can they loose where God doth not, i. e. where there is not true Contrition. But be­cause he saith others held the contrary Opinion, and had probability on their side too, therefore he would determine nothing. Notwithstanding this, in a few years after, the Council of Trent finds no difficulty, no Probability in the other Opinion; but determines as boldly, as if there had been an Universal Tradition their way; whereas the contrary cannot be denied by any that are conversant in the Doctrin of their Schools. But it was the mighty Pri­vilege of the Council of Trent, to make the Doctrins of [Page 92] Thomas and Scotus, when they agreed, to be Articles of Faith; and to denounce Anathema's against Opposers, although they reached to some of the greatest Divines of their own Church, within Bellarmin's compass of 500 Years.

Of Extreme Unction.

We are now to examin another pretended Sacrament, viz. of Extreme Unction. The Council of Trent declares Concil. Trid. Sess. 14. Can. 1, 2. this to be a true and proper Sacrament, and denounces an Anathema against him that denies it to be instituted by Christ, and published by St. James; or that it confers Grace Cap. 1, 2, 3. and Remission of Sins; or that affirms it was appointed for bodily Cures. It farther declares from the place of St. James interpreted by Tradition, that the Matter is Oil consecrated by the Bishop; The Form, that which is now used, Per istam unctionem, &c. the Effect, the Grace of the Holy Ghost in purging away the remainder of Sin, and strengthening the Soul; and sometimes bodily cures, when it is expedient for the Health of the Soul. So that the pri­mary Intention of this Sacrament must respect the Soul, otherwise it is granted, it could not be a true and proper Sacrament. So Suarez saith in this Case, If the external Suarez in 3. part. disp. 39. sect. 1. n. 5. Sign be not immediately appointed for a spiritual Effect, it cannot prove a true Sacrament of the New Law; no not al­though the bodily cure were designed for the strengthning of Faith. And from hence he proves, that when the Apo­stles are said to anoint the sick, and heal them, Mark 6. 13. this cannot relate to the Sacrament of Unction, because their cures had not of themselves an immediate respect to the Soul. The same Reason is used by Bellarmin, Sacramen­ta Bell. de Extr. Unct. c. 2. Makl. de Sa­cram. Extr. Unct. q. 2. per se ad animam pertinent, ad corpus per accidens aut certe secundario. The same is affirmed by Maldonat, al­though [Page 93] he differs from Bellarmin about the Apostles anointing with Oil, which Bellarmin denies to have been Sacramental for this Reason, but Maldonat affirms it; and answers other Arguments of Bellarmin, but not this.

Gregory de Valentia carries it farther, and saith, that if Greg. de Val. To. 4. Disp. 8. Q. 1 Punct. 1. the anointing with Oil were only a Symbol of a miraculous Cure, it could be no Sacrament; for that is a Medium to convey supernatural Grace, and then it would last no longer than the Gift of Miracles.

So that we have no more to do, but only to prove that by the Tradition of the Church St. James his anoint­ing was to be understood with respect to bodily cures in the first place.

We cannot pass over so great a Man as Cajetan, who wrote on that place of St. James, not long before the Council of Trent, and a good while after the Council of Florence, which relies on this place for this Sacrament of Unction. But Cajetan saith, it doth not relate to it, be­cause the immediate effect is the cure of the Party in Saint James; but in this Sacrament the direct and proper effect is Remission of Sins. All that Catharinus hath to say Cath. [...]not. in Comment. Cajet. l. 5. p. 464. against this, is, that the bodily cure is not repugnant to it; but what is this to the purpose, when the Question is, what is primarily designed in this place?

The School Divines, from Peter Lombard, had gene­rally received this for a Sacrament; but the Canonists denied it, as appears by the Gloss on c. Vir autem de Se­cund. Nuptiis Decret. Gregor. Tit. 21. where it is said, that this Unction might be repeated, being no Sacrament but only Prayer over a Person. The Roman Correctors cry out it is Heresie by the Council of Trent; but the Glosser knew no such thing; and if it were so only by the Council of Trent, then not by any Catholick Tradi­tion [Page 94] before. For, I suppose matter of Heresie must reach to the Canonists, as well as the Divines.

But the plainest determination of this matter will be by the ancient Offices of the Church; for if they respected bodily Cures in the first place, then it is owned there could be no Tradition for any Sacrament in this Unction.

In the ancient Ordo Romanus it is called Benedictio Olei ad omnem Languorem quocunque tempore. I desire to know whether the Oil so consecrated be chiefly designed for the Body or the Soul. And in the Office it self, this place of St. James is mentioned: And then follows, Te Domine peritissimum Medicum imploramus, ut virtutis tuae Medi­cinam in hoc Oleum propitius infundas. And a little after; Prosit Pater Misericordiarum, febribus & dysenteria la­borantibus, prosit paralyticis, caecis & claudis simulque vex­atitiis, with abundance more; which manifestly shews that this consecrated Oil was intended primarily for the cure of Diseases.

In the Ambrosian Form, the Prayer is, Infunde sancti­ficationem tuam huic Oleo, ut ab his quae unxerit membra, fugatis insidiis adversariae potestatis, susceptione praesentis Olei, Sancti Spiritus Gratia salutaris debilitatem expellat & plenam conferat sospitatem, Where the effect relates to the soundness of the Members anointed, and not to the Sins committed by them.

In the Gregorian Sacramentary, published by Menardus, S [...]r. Greg. p. 252. there is a Prayer wherein this place of St. James is men­tioned; and presently it follows, Cura quaesumus Redemp­tor noster gratia Spiritus Sancti languores istius infirmi, &c. and immediately before the anointing, Sana Domine in­firmum istum, cujus ossa turbata sunt, &c. and while he was anointing, the Patient was to say, Sana me Domine; and where the pain was greatest, he was to be so much more anointed, ubi plus dolor imminet amplius perungatur. [Page 95] While the rest were anointing, one of the Priests was to pray, pristinam & immelioratam recipere merearis sani­tatem; what was this but bodily health? and yet this was per hanc Sacramenti Olei Unctionem: after which follows a long Prayer for Recovery from Pains and Dis­eases.

And such there are in the several Offices published by Menardus, in his Notes; although the general strain of them shews that they were of latter times, when the Unction was supposed to expiate the Sins of the several Senses.

Cassander produces many instances to shew, that the Cassand. not. in Hymn. p. 288. Prayers and Hymns, and the Form of anointing did respect bodily health. In one he finds this Form, In nomine Patris, & Filii, & Spiritus Sancti accipe sanitatem. Not the health of the Mind, but the Body.

Maldonat takes notice of Cassander's Offices, and the Maldonat. de Sacramen ex [...]r. Unct. q. 1. expressions used in them; but he gives no answer to the main design of them. But three things he owns the Church of Rome to have varied from the ancient Tradition in, with respect to this Sacrament. 1. As to the Form; the Council of Trent owns no other but that now used, Per istam Unctionem, &c. but Maldonat confesses it was In­dicative, Ego te ungo, &c. or Ungo te Oleo sancto, &c. and he runs to that shift, that Christ did not not determin any certain Form; whereas the Council of Trent saith, the Church understood by Tradition the other to have been the Form. Here the Council of Trent makes an appeal to Tradition, and is deserted in it, by one of its most zealous defenders; and Gamachaeus affirms this to Gamach. de Extr. U [...]t. c. 3. Suar [...]z in 3. p [...]r [...]. Disp. 4 [...]. [...]. 3. be an essential Change; and he thinks the Sacrament not to be valid in another Form. S [...]arez thinks the other Form not sufficient. But Maldonat affirms the other Form was used; and so at that time, there was no S [...]crament [Page 96] of extreme Unction, because not administred in a valid or sufficient Form. And yet in the Gregorian Office the Form is Indicative, Inungo te de Oleo sancto, &c. So in that [...]reg. Sacr. p. 252. Menard. Not. p. 337. of Ratoldus, Ungo te Oleo sanctificato in nomine Patris, &c. In the Tilian Codex, Inungo te in nomine Patris, & Filii, & Spiritus Sancti, Oleo sancto atque sacrato, &c. In the Codex Remigii the general Forms are Indicative, Ungo p. 342. te Oleo sancto, &c. but there being a variety of Forms set down, among the rest there is one, Per istam Unctionem p. 353. Dei, &c. Which afterwards came to be the standing p. 352. Form; and yet the Council of Trent confidently appeals to Tradition in this matter. Which shewed how very little the Divines there met were skilled in the Antiqui­ties of their own Church. Suarez shews his skill when he saith, the Tradition of the Roman Church is infallible Suarez ibid. in the Substance of this Sacrament, and that it always u­sed a deprecative Form; but Maldonat knew better, and therefore on their own grounds their Tradition was more than fallible; since the Roman Church hath actually changed the Form of this Sacrament. 2. Maldonat ob­serves another change, and that is as to the Season of administring it. For the Council of Trent saith it ought to be in Exitu Vitae, and therefore it is called Sacramen­tum [...]. 3. Exeuntium, the Sacrament of dying Persons; but Maldonat saith, it is an abuse to give it only to such; Mald. ib. q. 3 for, in the ancient Church, they did not wait till the par­ty were near death; but, he saith, it was given before the Eucharist, and that not once, but for seven days toge­ther, as is plain, he saith, in the ancient MS. Offices; and he quotes Albertus Magnus for it. So that here is another great change in the Roman Tradition observed and owned by him. 3. In not giving it now to Children; for in the ancient Writers he saith, there is no exception, but it was used to all that were sick; and he quotes Cusanus for [Page 97] saying expresly that it was anciently administred to In­fants. But the reason of the change was the Doctrin of the Schoolmen; for with their admirable Congruities they had fitted Sacraments for all sorts of sins; as Bellar­min Bell. de Sacr. l. 2. c. 26. informs us; Baptism against Original Sin, Confirma­tion against Infirmity, Penance against actual Mortal Sin, Eucharist against Malice, Orders against Ignorance, Ma­trimony against Concupiscence; and what is now left for Extreme Unction? Bellarmin saith, they are the Re­mainders c. 2. of sin; and so saith the Council of Trent. But what Remainders are there in Children, who have not actually sinned, and Original sin is done away already? Therefore the Church of Rome did wisely take away Extreme Unction from Children; but therein Maldonat confesses it is gone off from Tradition. I know Ale­gambe would have Maldonat not believed to be the Au­thor of the Books of the Sacraments; but the Preface before his Works hath cleared this beyond contradiction from the MSS. taken from his Mouth with the day and year compared with the Copy printed under his Name. But if Maldonat may be believed, the Church of Rome hath notoriously gone off from its own Tradition as to this Sacrament of Extreme Unction.

Of Matrimony.

The last new Sacrament is that of Matrimony; which having its institution in Paradise, one would wonder how it came into mens heads to call it a Sacrament of the New Law, instituted by Christ; especially when the Grace given by it supposes Mankind in a fallen condi­tion. Hower the Council of Trent denounces an Ana­thema against him that saith that Matrimony is not truly Conc. Trid. Sess. 24. c. 1. [Page 98] and properly a Sacrament, one of the Seven of the Evan­gelical Law, instituted by Christ.

That which is truly and properly a Sacrament must be a Cause of Grace, according to the general Decrees about the Nature of Sacraments. So that those who do not hold the latter, must deny the former.

Now that there was no Tradition even in the Roman Church for this, I prove from the Confession of their own most learned Divines since the Council of Trent.

Vasquez confesses that Durandus denies that it confers Grace, and consequently that it is truly a Sacrament, Vasq. de Sacr. Matri [...]. Disp. [...]. c. 1. (but he yields it in a large improper sense) and that the Canonists were of his Opinion; and that the Master of the Sentences himself asserted no more than Durandus. And which adds more to this, he confesses that Soto durst not condemn this Opinion as heretical, because Thomas, [...]. 3. Bonaventure, Scotus and other Schoolmen did only look on their own as the more probable Opinion. But, saith he, after the Decree of Eugenius and the Council of Trent it is heretical.

Gregory de Valentia saith the same thing, only he adds that the Master of the Sentences contradicts himself. So Greg. de Val. To. 4. Disp. 10. Punct. 5. certain a deliverer was he of the Churches Tradition; and wonders that Soto should not find it plainly enough in the Councils of Florence and Trent, that a true Sacra­ment must confer Grace.

Maldonat yields, that Durandus and the Canonists de­nied Matrimony to be a proper Sacrament, but he calls Mald. de Sac. Matrim. q. 1. them Catholicks imprudently erring.

Bella [...]min denies it not; but uses a disingenuous shift Bell. de Matr. Sa [...]r. l. 1. 0. 5. about Durandus, and would bring it to a Logical Nicity, whereas [...] very Arguments he pretends to answer, sh [...]w pl [...]y that he denied this to be a true and proper Sacrament.

[Page 99] But he offers something considerable about the Cano­nists if it will hold.

1. That they were but a few, and for this he quotes Navarr, that the common Opinion was against them; for Navar. Max. c. 22. n. 20. which he mentions the Rubrick de Spons. but I can find nothing like it through the whole Title; and it is not at all probable that such Men as Hostiensis and the Glosser should be ignorant of, or oppose the common Opinion. Hostiensis saith plainly, that Grace is not conferr'd by Ma­trimony, Hostiens. Sum. de Sacr. non iter. n. 7. and never once mentions any Opinion among them against it; and the Glosser upon Gratian affirms it several times, Caus. 32. q. 2 c. Honorantur, In hoc Sacra­mento non confertur Gratia Spiritus Sancti sicut in aliis. The Roman Correctors could not bear this; and say in the Margin, immo confert; this is plain contradicting; but how is it proved from the Canon Law? They refer to Dist. 23. c. his igitur, v. pro beneficiis. Thither up­on their Authority I go; and there I find the very same thing said, and in the same words; and it is given as a Reason why Symony cannot be committed in Matrimony as in other Sacraments, and in both places we are referr'd to 32 q. 2. c. connubia, and to 1. q. 1. c. quicquid invisibilis, the former is not very favourable to the Grace of Matri­mony; and in the latter the Gloss is yet more plain, if it be possible, Nota Conjugium non esse de his Sacramentis quae consotationem coelestis grati [...] tribuunt. There the Correctors fairly refer us to the Council of Trent, which hath decreed the contrary. But that is not to our bu­siness, but whether the Canonists owned this or not. And there it follows, that other Sacraments do so signifie as to convey, this barely signifies. So that I think Bellar­min had as good have given up the Canonists, as to make so lame a Defence of them.

[Page 100] 2. He saith we are not to rely on the Canonists for these Durand. in sent. l. 4. Dist. 26. q. 3. things, but on the Divines. But Durand [...] saith, the Canonists could not be ignorant of the Doctrin of the Ro­man Church; for some of them were Cardinals; and he gives a better Reason, viz. that the sense of the Roman Church was to be seen in the Decretals. For therefore Marriage was owned to be a Sacrament in the large sense, because of the Decret. of Lucius III. Extra de hae­ret. c. ad abolendam; but the Schoolmen argued from Probabilities and Niceties in this matter, which could not satisfie a Man's understanding; as appears by Duran­dus his Arguments, and Bellarmin's Answers to them.

1. Where Sacraments confer Grace, there must be a Di­vine Institution of something above Natural Reason, but there is nothing of that kind in Matrimony, besides the signifying the Union between Christ and his Church; and therefore it is only a Sacrament in a large, and not in a proper sense.

In answer to this Bellarmin saith, that it both signifies Eell. de Sacr. Matr. l. 1. c. 5. and causes such a Love between Man and Wife, as there is between Christ and his Church.

But Vasquez saith, that the Resemblance as to Christ and Vasq. da Sacr. Matr. Disp. 2. [...]. 6. Basil. Pont. de Matr. l. 1. [...]. 5. n. 10. his Church in Matrimony, doth not at all prove a promise of Grace made to it. And Basilius Pontius approves of what Vasquez saith, and confesses, that it cannot be infer'd from hence that it is a true and proper Sacrament.

2. Here is nothing External added, besides the mere Contract of the Persons; but the nature of a Sacrament impli [...]s some external and visible sign.

Bellarmin answers, that it is not necessary there should be in this Sacrament any such extrinsecal sign; because it lies in a mere Contract. And that I think holds on the other side, that a mere Contract cannot be a Sacrament, from their own Definition of a Sacrament.

[Page 101] 3. The Marriage of Infidels was good and valid, and their Baptism adds nothing to it; but it was no Sacrament before, and therefore not after.

Bellarmin answers, that it becomes a Sacrament after. And so there is a Sacrament without either Matter or Form; for there is no new Marriage.

4. Marriage was instituted in the time of Innocency, and is a natural Dictate of Reason, and therefore no Sacra­ment.

Bellarmin answers, that it was no Sacrament then, be­cause there was no need of Sacramental Grace. And al­though the Marriage of Adam and Eve did represent the Union between Christ and his Church; yet it was no proper Sacrament. But how doth it prove that it is a Sacra­ment upon any other Account, under the Gospel? And if that doth not imply a promise of Grace, then how can it now?

So that Durandus his Reasons appear much stronger than Bellarmin's Answers.

But Durandus urges one thing more, which Bellar­min takes no notice of, viz. that this Opinion of the Ca­nonists was very well known at that time, and was never condemned as contrary to any determination of the Church. Now, if there had been any constant Tradition even of the Church of Rome against it, it is impossible these Cano­nists should have avoided Censure; their Opinion being so much taken notice of by the Schoolmen afterwards. Jacobus Almain saith, it was a Controversie between the Ca­nonists Almain in 4. Dist. 26. q. 1. and Divines, whether Matrimony was a Sacram [...]nt; not all the Divines neither; for the confesses Durandus and others seemed to agree with them. What Universal Tra­dition then had the Council of Trent to rely upon in this matter? When all the Cano [...]ists, according to Almain, and some of the Divines, opposed it? He sets down their [Page 102] different Reasons; but never alledges matter of Faith, or Tradition against them, but only saith, the Divines hold the other Opinion, because Matrimony is one of the Seven Sacraments. But on what was the Opinion of the Ne­cessity of Seven Sacraments grounded? What Scripture, what Fathers, what Tradition was there, before Peter Lombard, for just that number?

The Sense of the Greek Church about Seven Sacra­ments.

But before I come to that, it is fit to take notice of what Bellarmin lays great weight upon, both as to the Number of the Sacraments in general, and this in parti­cular; Bell. de Sacr. l. 2. c. 25. which is, the consent of both the Greek and Latin Church for at least 500 Years. But I have shewed there De Matrim. Sacr. l. 1. c. 4. was no such Consent, as is boasted of even in the Latin Church. As to the Greek Church, he saith, it is an argu­ment of Universal Tradition, when they had the same Tra­dition even in their Schism.

To this I Answer.

1. We do not deny that the latter Greeks, after the taking Constantinople by the Latins, did hold Seven Myste­ries; which the Latins render Sacraments. For after there were Latin Patriarchs at Constantinople, and abundance of Latin Priests in the Eastern Parts, they had perpetual Disputes about Religion; and the Latins by degrees did gain upon them in some points; and particularly in this of Seven Sacraments, for the Latins thought it an advan­tage to their Church to boast of such a Number of Sacra­ments; and the Greeks that they might not seem to come behind them, were willing to embrace the same Num­ber.

[Page 103] The first Person among them who is said to have writ­ten about them, was Simeon Bishop of Thessalonica, whom Possevin sets at a greater distance, that the Tradition might seem so much elder among them; (for he makes Possev. in Ap­par. him to have lived 600 years before his time;) but Leo Allatius hath evidently proved, that he lived not two Leo Allat. de Concord. l. 2. c. 13. n. 13. De Simeon. Script. p. 185. &c. hundred years before him, (which is a considerable diffe­rence,) for Simeon dyed but six months before the taking of Thessalonica, A. D. 1430, as he proves from Joh. Anagno­sta, who was present at the taking it. From hence it ap­pers how very late this Tradition came into the Greek Church.

After him Gabriel Severus, Bishop of Philadelphia, wrote about the Seven Sacraments, and he lived at Venice in Arcudius his time, who wrote since Possevin; and Cru­sius wrote to this Gabriel A. D. 1580, and he was conse­crated Crusii Turc [...] Groec. by Jeremias A. D. 1577. So that neither his Autho­rity, or that of Je [...]emias, can signifie any thing as to the Antiquity of this Tradition among the Greeks.

Leo Allatius talks of the old as well as Modern Greeks, Leo Allat. de Concord. l. 3. c. 16. n. 4. who held Seven Sacraments, but he produces the Testimo­ny only of those who lived since the taking of Constanti­nople; as Job the Monk, Simeon, Johannes Palaeologus, Je­remias, Gabriel, Cyrillus Berrhoensis, Parthenius, and such like: But he very craftily saith, he produces these to let us see they have not gone off from the Faith of their Ancestors, whereas that is the thing we would have seen, viz. the Testimony of the Greeks before, and not after­wards. As to the ancient Greeks, he confesses they say nothing of the number. De numero apud eos altum silenti­um n. 9. est. And how could therebe a Tradition in so much silence? But some speak of some, and others of others, but all speak of all. This is a very odd way to prove a Tradition of a certain Number. For then, some might [Page 104] believe Three, others Four, others Five, but how can this prove that all believed just Seven? However let us see the Proof. But instead of that he presently starts an Objection from the pretended Dionysius Areopagita, viz. That where he designs to treat of all the Sacraments, he ne­ver mentions Penance, Extreme Unction, and Matrimony; n. 10. and after a great deal of rambling Discourse, he concludes that he did ill to leave them o [...]t; and that others Answers n. 15. n. 17. are insufficient. He shews from Tertullian, Ambrose and Cyril that the necessary Sacraments are mentioned; but where are the rest? and we are now enquiring after them in the ancient Greek Church; but they are not to be foun [...]. As one may confidently affirm, when one who professed so much skill in the Greek Church, as Leo Alla­tius, hath no more to say for the Proof of it.

2. Those Greeks who held Seven Sacraments, did not hold them in the Sense of the Council o [...] Trent. And that for two Reasons.

1. They do not hold them all to be of divine Institu­tion. Which appears by the Patriarch Jeremias his An­swer to the Tubing Divines, who at first seems to write agreeably to the Church of Rome in this matter, (except about Extreme Unction;) but being pressed hard by them in their Reply; he holds to the Divine Institution of Baptism, and the Eucharist, but gives up the rest, as instituted by the Churches Authority. Which is plain gi­ving Act. Theolog. Wirtemberg. p. 240. up the Cause. How then comes Bellarmin to in­sist so much on the Answer of Jeremias? The Reason was, that Socolovius had procured from Constantinople the Patriarch's first answer, and translated and printed it; upon which great Triumphs were made of the Patri­arch's Consent with the Church of Rome; but when these Divines were hereby provoked to publish the whole pro­ceedings, [Page 105] those of the Church of Rome were unwilling to be undeceived; and so take no notice of any farther An­swer. Since the time of Jeremias, the Patriarch of Ale­xandria, (as he was afterwards,) Metrophanes Critopulus Metroph. Confess. Eccl. Orient. p. 74. published an Account of the Faith of the Greek Church; and he saith expresly of Four of the Seven, that they are Mystical Rites, and equivocally called Sacraments. And from hence it appears how little Reason Leo Allatius had Leo Allat. de Concord. E [...]l. Occident. & Orient. l. 3. c. 17. to be angry with Caucus, a Latinized Greek, like himself, for affirming that the modern Greeks did not look on these Sacraments as of Divine Institution; but after he hath gi­ven him some hard words, he offers to prove his Asserti­on for him. To which end he not only quotes that passage of the Patriarch Jeremias, but others of Job and Gregorius; from whence he infers, that Five of the Sa­craments were of Ecclesiastical Institution, and he saith nothing to take it off. So admirably hath he proved the Consent of the Eastern and Western Churches!

2. They do not agree in the Matter, or Form, or some essential part of them, with the Council of Trent, and therefore can make up no Tradition for the Doctrin of that Council about the Seven Sacraments. This will be made appear by going through them.

1. Of Chrism.

1. As to the Form, Arcudius shews, that Gabriel of Philadelphia, Cabasilas and Marcus Ephesius, all place Arcud. d [...] Concord. l. 2. c. 6. the Form in the Consecration of it; but the Church of Rome makes the Form to lie in the Words spoken in the Use of it.

2. As to the Minister of it. Among the Greeks it is commonly performed by the Presbyter, though the Bi­shop be present; but the Council of Tr [...]nt denounces an [Page 106] Anathema against him that saith, the Bishop alone is not C [...]il. Trid. de [...]. C [...]. [...]. De Sa [...]ra [...]. [...]. 9. the ordinary Minister of it.

3. As to the Character. The Council of Trent declares that whosoever affirms that Confirmation doth not imprint an indelible Character, so as it cannot be repeated is Ana­thematized; but Arcudius shews at large, that the modern [...]. [...]. Greeks make no scruple of reiterating Confirmation. But Catumsyritus, another Latinized Greek, opposes Arcudius herein; and saith, that the Use of Chrism among the Geeeks, doth not relate to the Sacrament of Confirmation, but was a Symbolical Ceremony relating to Baptism; and for this he quotes one Corydaleus a Man of great Note in the Patriarchal Church at Constantinople. Therefore Cau­cus had reason to deny that the Greeks receive that which the Latins call the Sacrament of Confirmation. And if this hold, then the Tradition of the Seven Sacraments must fail in the Greek Church. For they deny that they have any such thing as a Sacrament of Confirmation di­stinct from Baptism.

2. Of the Sacrament of Penance.

1. The Council of Trent declares Absolution of the Pe­nitent to be a judicial Act, and denounces an Anathema a­gainst Concil. Trid. de Paenit. c. 6. [...]an. 9. him that denies it; but the Greek Church uses a de­precative Form, (as they call it,) not pronouncing Abso­lution by way of Sentence, but by way of Prayer to God. Which as Aquinas observes, rather shews a Person to be absolved by God than by the Priest, and are rather a Prayer [...]. [...]. p. q. 84. [...]. a [...]. 1. that it may be done, than a signification that it is done; and therefore he looks on such Forms as insufficient. And if it be a judicial Sentence, as the Council of Trent deter­mines, it can hardly be reconciled to such a Form, where­in no kind of judicial Sentence was ever pronounced; as [Page 107] Arcudius grants; and in Extreme Unction, where such a Arcud de Concord. 4. l. c. 3. p. 36 [...]. Form is allowed, there is, as he observes, no Judicial Act. But he hopes at last to bring the Greeks off by a Phrase used in some of their Forms, I have you absolved; but he p. 370. confesses it is not in their Publick Offices; and their Priests for the most part use it not. Which shews it to be an Innovation among the Latinizing Greeks, if it be so ob­served, which Catumsyritus denies, and saith, he proves Catumsyritus de vera Conc. Proleg. p. 153. it only from some Forms granted by Patents, which are not Sacramental; and supposing it otherwise, he saith, it is foolish, false and erroneous to suppose such a Form to be valid; because it is no Judicial Act.

2. The Council of Trent makes Confession of all Mortal Concil. Trid. de Poenit. c. 5. Sins, how secret soever, to be necessary in order to the benefit of Priestly Absolution in this Sacrament, and de­nounces an Anathema against those that deny it; but the Can. 7. Greek Church grants Absolution upon supposition that they have not confessed all Mortal Sins: As appears by the Form of the Patriarch of Antioch, produced by Arcudius, and another Form of the Patriarch of Constantinople, in Jere­mias Arcud. p. 373. his Answer. Arcudius is hard put to it, when to excuse this he saith, they only pray to God to forgive them; for this is to own that a deprecative Form is insufficient, and so that there is no Sacrament of Penance in the Greek Church.

3. Of Orders.

The Greek and Latin Churches differ, both as to Mat­ter and Form. The Council of Trent Anathematiseth those who deny a visible and exeternal Priesthood in the New Te­stament; S [...]. 2 [...]. de [...]. Or [...]i [...]. C [...]. 1. or a Power of consecrating and offering the true Body and Bloud of Christ, and of remitting and retaining [Page 108] of Sins. And this two-fold Power the Church of Rome expresses by a double Form, one of delivering the Ves­sels with Accipe Potestatem, &c. the other of Imposition of Hands, with Accipe Spiritum Sanctum.

But the Greek Church wholly omits the former, on which the greatest weight is laid in the Latin Church, and many think the Essential Form lies in it. When the Office of Ordination is over, the Book of the Liturgy, cal­led [...] is delivered to the Presbyter, but without any words; and there is no mention of it in their Ri­tuals, either Printed or MSS. so likewise a parcel of conse­crated Bread is delivered by the Bishop to him afterwards. And all the Form is, The Divine Grace advances such an one to the Office of a Presbyter.

If we compare this with the Form in the Council of Florence, we shall find no agreement either as to Matter or Form, in this Sacrament, between the Greek and La­tin Churches. For there the Matter is said to be that by which the Order is conferred, viz. the delivery of the Cha­lice with Wine, and the Paten with the Bread; and the Form, Receive the Power of offering Sacrifice for the Li­ving and the Dead. And it is hardly possible to suppose these two Churches should go upon the same Tradition. I know what pains Arcudius hath taken to reconcile them; but as long as the Decree of Eugenius stands, and is received in the Church of Rome, it is impossible. And Catumsyritus labours hard to prove, that he hath endea­voured thereby to overthrow the whole Order of Priesthood in the Roman Church.

4. Of Extreme Unction.

Bellarmin particularly appeals to the Greek Church for Bell. de Extr. Unit. l. 1. c. 4. its consent as to this Sacrament; but if he means in the modern sense as it is deliver'd by the Councils of Florence and Trent, he is extremely mistaken.

1. For the former saith, it is not to be given but to such of whose death they are afraid; and the Council of Trent calls it the Sacrament of dying Persons. But the Greeks administer their Sacrament of Unction to Persons in health as well as sickness, and once a year to all the People that will; which Arcudius saith, is not only done by the il­literate Arcud. de Concord. l. 5. c. 4. Priests, but by their Patriarchs and Metropoli­tans, &c. and they look on then as a Supplement to the ancient Penance of the Church; for they think the partaking of the holy Oil makes amends for that: but this Arcudius condemns as an abuse and innovation a­mong them. But the original Intention and Design of it was for the Cure and Recovery of sick Persons; as Ar­cudius confesses the whole scope of the Office shews; and p. 389. c. 5. c. 7. p. 403. in the next Chapter he produces the Prayers to that end. And the Greeks charge the Latins with Innovation in giving this Sacrament to those Persons of whose Reco­very they have no hope.

2. The Council of Trent requires that the Oil of Ex­treme Con [...]. Tri [...]. de Extr. [...], c. 1. Catumsyr. Vera Co [...]cord. Tr. 1. p. 156. Arcu [...]. l. 5. [...] c. 2. Unction be consecrated by a Bishop; and this the Doctors of the Roman Church, saith Catumsyritus, make essential to the Sacrament. But in the Greek Church the Presbyters commonly do it, as Arcudius shews at large.

5. Of Matrimony.

The Council of Trent from making this a Sacrament, Conc. Trid. S [...]ss. 24. Can. 7. denounces an Anathema against those who do not hold the Bond indissoluble, even in the Case of Adultery. And Bellarmin urges this as his first Reason, because it is a [...]ell. de Matr. l. 1. c. 16. sign of the Conjunction of Christ with his Church. But the Greek Church held the contrary; and continues so to do, as both Bellarmin and Arcudius confess.

So that though there be allow'd a consent in the Num­ber of Sacraments among the Modern Greeks, yet they have not an entire Consent with the Roman Church in any one of them.

The Sense of other Eastern Churches about the Seven Sacraments.

But to shew how late this Tradition of Seven Sacra­ments came into the Greek Church, and how far it is from being an Universal Tradition, I shall now make it appear that this Number of Sacraments was never re­ceived in the other Christian Churches, although some of them were originally descended from the Ancient Greek Church.

I begin with the most Eastern Churches, called the Christians of St. Thomas in the East-Indies. And we have a clear Proof that there was no Tradition among them about the Seven Sacraments. For when Alexius Mene­ses, Archbishop of Goa, undertook to reform them accor­ding to the Roman Church, (if that may be called a Re­formation) and held a Council at Diamper to that pur­pose, A. D. 1599. he found that they had no Sacrament of Chrism, or Penance, or Extreme Unction, of which [Page 111] they were utterly ignorant, saith Jarricus from Antonius Pet. Jarric. Rer J [...]dic. To. 3. p. 2. c. 12. Goveanus, who was Prior of Goa, and published the whole proceedings. Which Book was translated out of Portu­gese by Joh. Baptista a Glano into French, and printed at Brussels, 1609. From whence the Author of the Cri­tical History of the Faith and Customs of the Eastern Na­tions hath given an Account of these things; and he saith, Histoire Cri­tique, ch. 8. p. 104. they owned but three Sacraments, Baptism, Eucharist and Orders; that they knew nothing of the Sacrament of Chrism or extreme Unction, and abhorred Auricular Confession. p. 105. But in excuse of them he saith, that they joyned Confir­mation p. 112. with Baptism, as other Eastern Churches did; that the Sacrament of Extreme Unction as it is practised in the Church of Rome is known only to the Latin Church; p. 113. but the Eastern Church had the Unction of S. James for p. 13. the Cure of Diseases, as the Greek Church had.

Cotovicus affirms the same of the other Eastern Churches Cotov. Itin. Hierosol. & Syr. p. 206. called Chaldean, (who are under the same Patriarch with the Christians of S. Thomas) that they knew nothing of the Sacraments of Confirmation and Extreme Unction. This Patriarch is the same which is commonly called the Patriarch of Babylon; whose Residence is at Mozal; but called of Babylon, because Sele [...]cia, after the desolation of the true Babylon had the name given to it (as it were [...]asie to prove, if it were pertinent to this design) and upon the destruction of Sele [...]cia the Patriarch removed first to Bagdat and then to Mozal; whose Jurisciction extends over all those Eastern Christians, which are cal­led Nestorian.

In the Abyssine Churches, Godignus saith positively from those who had been conversant among them, that Godign. de [...] [...]. l. 1. [...]. [...]. they knew nothing of the Sacraments of Chrism and Ex­treme Unction; and that all the Confession they have is g [...]neral and rare; and that they have no Bishops under [...]. [...]. [Page 112] the Abuna, and believe the bond of Matrimony easily dis­solved. So that the Tradition of Seven Sacraments is wholly unknown to them, but as it was imposed by the Roman M [...]ssionaries; which imposition was so ill received there and brought such Confusion and Disorders among them, that they are for ever banished.

In the Armenian Churches, Joh. Chernacensis a Lati­nized Armenian saith, that the Armenians owned not the Clem. Ga [...]an. Conc. Eccles. Arm. cum Rom. c. 30. p. 516. Seven Sacraments, that they knew nothing of Chrism and Extre [...] Unction. Here we see a general consent as to the total ignorance of two of the Seven Sacraments in these Churches. But Clemens Galanus, who had been Clem. Galan. To. 3. p. 439. many years a Missionary among the Armenians endea­vours to prove that they had the Tradition of the seven Sacraments; but very unsuccessfully. For he produces none of their ancient Authors for it: but he names Var­tanus whom he sets himself to confute afterwards; and he confesses, that he took away the Sacrament of Penance, and made Burial of the Dead to be one of his seven. But more than that, he saith, the Armenian Churches have p. 636. forbidden Extreme Unction as the Nestorians had done Auri­cular p. 605. Confession. So that nothing like a truly Catholick Tradition can be produced for the Number of seven Sa­craments either in the Church of Rome or elsewhere, within Bellarmin's own term of 500 years.

I am now to give an account when this Number of seven Sacraments, came into the Church, and on what Occasions it was advanced to be a point of Faith.

The first I can find who expresly set down the Num­ber of seven Sacraments, was Hugo de S. Victore, who Hugo de S. Vict. de Offi­ [...] l. 1. c. 12. lived in the twelfth Century, not long before Peter Lom­bard. But that there was an Innovation made by him in this matter, I shall make appear by comparing what [Page 113] he saith with what others had delivered who were short of the Primitive Fathers.

Rupertus Tuitiensis lived much about the same time in Germany that Hugo did at Paris, and he gives a different Rup. Tuit. de Vict. Verbi. l. 12. c. 11. Resolution of the Question about the Principal Sacra­ments: For he names no more than Baptism, the Eucha­rist and the double Gift of the Holy Ghost; and, saith he, these three Sacraments are necessary instruments of our Salvation. But Hugo saith, there are seven principal Sa­craments; (which sufficiently shews, that he thought Hugo do Sac. l. 1. part. 9. c. 6, 7. there were other Sacraments besides these; and so he ex­presses his mind in another place, where he makes all symbolical Signs to be Sacraments,) but the principal Sa­cram [...]nts he saith, are those which convey Grace.

Fulbertus Carnotensis lived in France in the beginning Fulb. Carnot. Epist. 1. of the tenth Century; and where he Discourses of the Sa­craments he names no more than Baptism and the Eucha­rist. He calls the Body and Blood two Sacraments, and so did Rabanus Maurus before him. De Inst. Cler. l. 1. c. 31.

Who lived in the ninth Age, and was a Person of great Reputation; and he names no more Sacraments than Rab. Maur. de Inst. Cler. l. 1. c. 24. Baptism, and Chrism, and the Eucharist; where he pro­poses to treat of them; and had as just an Occasion to have mention'd the rest, as Hugo had. But Bellarmin saith, he handled all wherein the Clergy were concerned, Bell. de Sacr. l. 2. c. 27. and therefore omitted none but Matrimony. But were not they concerned to know whether it were a Sacra­ment or not? The Question is not whether he mention'd the things, but whether he called them Sacraments; but I do not find Extreme Unction so much as mention'd by him in the place he refers us to.

In the same [...]ge, Walafridus Strabo, where he pur­posely Walaf. Strab. de Reb. E [...]cl. c. 16, 17, 25. discourseth of the Sacraments names no more than Rabanus Maurus; and this had been an inexcusable [Page 114] omission in such who treat of Ecclesiastical Offices; and were to inform Persons of their duties about them. And there­fore I lay much more weight on such an omission in them than in any other Writers. I know Paschasius Radber­tus Pasch. Radb. de c [...]rp. & sang. Dom. c. 3. mentions no more than three Sacraments, Baptism, Chrism and the Eucharist; but Bellarmin and Sirmondus say he mention'd them for Example sake, because it was not his business to handle the Number of Sacraments; but this Answer will by no means serve for those who purposely treated of these matters; and therefore an o­mission in them is an argument that they knew nothing of them.

And this Argument will go yet higher; for in the beginning of the seventh Century, Isidore of Sevil trea­ted Isid. Orig. 1. 6. de Officiis. of these matters, and he names no more than Bap­tism, Chrism and the Eucharist; and he tells us, they are therefore called Sacraments, because under the covering of corporeal things a secret and invisible virtue is convey'd to the pa [...]takers of them. And this very passage is en­tred into the Canon Law c. 1. q. 1 c. Multi Secularium, &c. and there it passes under the Name of Gregory I. but the Roman Correctors restore it to Isidore.

But it may be objected, that Ivo Carnotensis made a Collection of Canons before Gratian; who handles the Iro Decret 2. p. c. 73. Sacraments in his first and second Part; and he seems to make the annual Chrism to be a Sacrament; for which he quotes an Epistle of Fabianus, who saith it ought to be consecrated every year, quia novum Sacramentum est; and this, he saith, he had by Tradition from the Apostles. Which Testimony the modern Schoolmen rely upon for a sufficient proof of this Apostolical Tradition. But this Ysamb. ad. q. 72. Disp. 1. [...]. 3. Epistle is a notorious counterfeit, and rejected by all men of any tolerable Ingenuity in the Church of Rome. Thus we trace the Original of some pretended Apostolical [Page 115] Traditions into that Mass of Forgeries, the Decretal E­pistles, which was sent abroad under the Name of Isi­dore.

Ivo produces another Testimony from Innocentius I. Ivo ib. c. 75: to prove that Extreme Unction was then owned for a kind of Sacrament, and therefore ought not to be given to Pe­nitents. If this Rule holds, then either Matrimony was no Sacrament, or Penitents might not marry; but the Canonists say even excommunicated Persons may marry, but one of them saith, it is a strange Sacrament excommu­nicated Persons are allow'd to partake of. Alex. Consil.

But this genus est Sacramenti signifies very little to those who know how largely the Word Sacrament was used in elder times, from Iertullian downwards. But our Question is not about a kind of a Sacrament, but strict and proper Sacraments; and if it had been then thought so, he would not have permitted any to administer it; unless they will say it is as necessary to Salvation as Baptism, which none do. It appears from hence, that there was then a Custome among some in regard to S. James his Words, if Persons were sick, to take some of the Chrism to anoint them, and to pray over them in hopes of their Recovery; but this was no Sacrament of dying Persons, as it is now in the Church of Rome.

If it had been then so esteemed, S. Ambrose (or who-ever was the Author of the Book of Sacraments) would not have omitted it, and the other supernumeraries, when he purposely treats of Sacraments; the same holds as to S. Cyril of Jerusalem. And it is a poor evasion to say, that they spake only to Catechumens; for they were to be instructed in the Means and Instruments of Salva­tion as they make all Sacraments to be.

[Page 116] And it is to as little purpose to say, that they do not declare there are but tw [...]; for our business is to enquire for a Catholick Tradition for s [...]ven true and proper Sa­craments,, as the Council of Trent determines under an Anathema. But if we compare the Traditions for two and for seven together, the other will be found to have far greater Advantage; not only because the two are mention'd in the eldest Writers, where the seven are not; but because so many of the Fathers agree in the Tradition, that the Sacraments were designed by the Wa­ter and Blood which came out of our Sa­viour's side. So S. Chrysostom, S. Cyril S. Chrys. in Joh. hom. 87. of Alexandria, Leo Magnus, but above S. Cyril. in Joh. l. 12. all S. Augustin who several times insists Leo in Epist. ad Flavian. upon this; which shews that they S. Aug. in Joh. Tr. 9. 15. in Ps. 40 De Ci [...]it. Dei, l. 15. c. 26. De Symbol. c. 6. thought those two to be the true and proper Sacraments of Christianity; how­ever there might be other Mystical Rites which in a large sense might be called Sacraments.

As to the Occasions of setting up this Number of seven Sacraments, they were these.

1. Some pretty Congruities which they had found out for them. The Number seven they observe was in re­quest in the Levitical Law, as to Sacrifices and Purifica­tions. Naaman was bid to wash seven times. And Bel­larmin in good earnest concludes that the whole Scrip­ture seemed to foretell the seven Sacraments by those things. Bell. de Sacr. l. 2. c. 26. But besides, he tells us of the seven things relating to na­tural Life which these have an Analogy with; the seven sorts of sins these are a remedy against, and the seven sorts of Vertues which answer to the seven Sacraments. But none of all these prove any Catholick Tradition.

2. Making no difference between Mystical Rites con­tinued in Imitation of Apostolical Practices, and true and [Page 117] real Sacraments. Imposition of Hands for Confirmation and Ordination is allowed to be a very just and reasonable Imitation of them; and as long as the Miraculous Power of Healing Diseases continued, there was a fair Ground for continuing the Practice mentioned by S. James; but there was no Reason afterwards to change this into quite another thing, by making it a Sacrament, chiefly inten­ded for doing away the Remainders of Sin.

3. Advancing the Honour of the Priesthood; by ma­king them so necessary for the actual Expiation of all sorts of Sins, and in all conditions. For no Sacrament is rightly administred by the Council of Trent without the Priest; and therefore clandestine Marriages are declared void by it. And it pronounces an Anathema against those who say any others than Priests can administer Extreme Unction; however it appears that in the time of Innocen­tius 1. any might make use of the Chrism when it was consecrated by a Bishop; but they are grown wiser in the Church of Rome since that time; and as they have al­tered a Ceremony of Curing into a Sacrament of Dying, so they have taken Care that none but Priests shall perform that last Office, that the People may believe they can neither live nor dye without them.

VI. Of Auricular Confession.

The Council of Trent declares, that the Universal Concil. Trid. Sess. 14. de Poenit. c. 5. Church always understood that Christ did institute an entire Confession of Sins; and that it is received by Divine Right to all who sin after Baptism, because our Lord Jesus Christ before his Ascension into Heaven, did leave Priests as his Vicars, to be Presidents and Judges, to whom all mor­tal sins were to be made known, and of which they were by [Page 118] The Power of the Keys to give Sentence, so as either to re­mit or retain them.

It farther saith, That the most holy and ancient Fathers by a great and unanimous Consent did use this secret Sacra­mental Ib. Confession from the beginning.

And it denounces Anathema's,

1. Against him that denies the Sacrament of Penance to Can. 1. be of Christ's Institution.

2. Against him that denies that our Saviour's words, Re­ceive 3. ye the Holy Ghost, Whose sins ye remit they are remit­ted, &c. are to be understood of the Power of remitting and retaining in the Sacrament of Penance, as the Ca­lick Church always understood them.

3. Against him that denies Confession to be a Part of it, or to have Divine Institution, and to be necessary to Sal­vation; 4, 6, 7. as it relates to all mortal though secret Sins.

Thus we see the Sense of the Council of Trent in this matter; and I shall now make it evident there was no such Catholick Tradition, as is here pretended for it, by the Confession of their own Writers.

1. As to the General Sense of the Church.

2. As to the Founding it on John 22. Those sins ye re­mit, &c.

1. As to the General Sense of the Church. Maldonat reckons up Seven several Opinions among themselves a­bout Maldonat de Sacr. Poenit. De Confess. c. 2. Confession. 1. Of those who denied it to be of Divine Right, but held it to be useful in the Church; and for this he quotes Rhenanus and Erasmus. 2. Of those who make it to be onely of Ecclesiastical Institution; and this, saith he, is the Opinion of all the Canonists. 3. Of those who thought it came in by Apostolical Tradition; of which he reckons Theodore Archbishop of Canterbury, 4. Of some [Page 119] Divines who held it to be instituted only by St. James. 5. Of others who held it to be of Divine Right, and not instituted by the Apostles, but insinuated by Christ; and for this he quotes Alexander Hales, and Bonaventure. 6. Of some who thought it instituted in the Old Testament. 7, Of those who held it instituted by Christ, but not as a Precept, but by way of Council; and for this he mentions Scotus and his Followers.

Vasquez reckons up among those whose Opinions are Vasquez in 3. Th. To. 4. Q. 90. art. 1. n. 4. not condemned, The Canonists, Erasmus, Bonaventure, Alexander Hales, and Scotus, who all differed from the Council of Trent.

Suarez mentions three Opinions among them 1. Of Suarez in 3. p. Th. To. 4. Disp. 35. § 1. those who said it was instituted in the Law of Nature. 2. Of those who attributed it to the Law of Moses. 3 Of those who d [...]nyed any Institution of it by way of Precept from Christ in the Law of Grace; and for this he quotes Hugo de Sancto Victore, Alexandèr Hales, and Bonaventure, and they went upon this Ground, that no such Instituti­on could be proved either by Scripture or Tradition.

Gregory de Valentia Confesses, some Catholick Authors Greg. de Va­lent. To. 4. Disp. 7. Q. 9. Punct. 2. denied the Divine Institution of Confession; for which he produces the Canonists, and Erasmus and Rhenanus. But he thinks they were not guilty of Heresie, because they were not obstinate; but that is not our business, which is to shew, that by their own confession there was not a con­stant Catholick Tradition in the Church about it.

Natalis Alexander, who hath lately pretended to an­swer Nat. Alex. de Sacr. Con­fess. p. 229. Daillè, confesses, that from the ninth to the thir­teenth Age, many Catholicks did hold, that Confession to God alone was sufficient to obtain Remission of sins; and he proves it from Lombard, Gratian and the Canonists. But he saith it was no heresie in them, the point not being yet settled by a general Council.

[Page 120] Boileau in his Answer to Daillè cannot deny that in Hist. Confes. Auric. c. 29. the time of Lombard and Gratian men held several ways about this matter; but he answers with Thomas upon the Sentences; that it was an opinion then, but since the Coun­cil of Lateran it is become a Heresie. But if it were no heretical Opinion then, what becomes of Infallible Tra­dition? If the Church defines by Tradition, that Tra­dition must be proved before the Definition, otherwise it hath no ground to proceed upon.

The Council of Lateran under Innocent III. (it seems) made it a Heresie to deny this Sacramental Confession. With­in much less than a Century before it, lived Peter Lom­bard and Gratian. Peter Lombard made it his business to collect a Body of Divinity out of the Sentences of the Fathers; and his work hath been universally esteemed in the Roman Church. When he comes to state this point of Confession out of the Fathers, i. e. to give an account of the Tradition of the Church about it; he tells us in the beginning, that learned men were of different opini­ons; Lom. sent. l. 4. dist. 17. and for what reason? because the Doctors of the Church seemed to deliver not only divers but contrary things, i. e. they had no certain and constant Tradition about them. And when he comes to the point of Con­fession to God only, he quotes for it, besides Scripture, S. Ambrose, and S. Chrysostem, and Prosper, and against it S. Augustine and Leo, and concludes himself for the latter; but saith not a word more to shew that the con­stant Tradition of the Church had been for this opinion.

Gratian puts the same Question, and for Confession to Grat. de Pae­nit. Dist. 1. God alone he quotes S. Ambrose, S. Augustine, and Prosper, besides Scripture, and argues largely for it after c. Conver­timini, &c. Then he sets down the Arguments on the other side from c. 38. and after c. 60. he sums up the force of them, and again after c. 87. and when he hath [Page 121] said all on one side and on the other, he concludes after c. 89. that he left all to the Readers Judgment; for both Opinions had wise and pious Defenders; and produces that saying as out of Theodore's Penitential; that some think that we ought to confess only to God, as the Greeks others that we ought to do it to the Priest too, as almost all the Church besides; but then he adds, that Confession to God purges away Sin, but that to the Priest shews how they are purged, i. e. by Contrition. So the Gloss interprets it. Bellarmin thinks that, ut Groeci, was foisted into the Ca­non, Bell. de poenit. l. 3. c. 5. and I shall not dispute against it, provided that which answers to it, ut tota ferè sancta Ecclesta, be allow­ed to be so too, as the Roman Correctors do confess.

Boileau hath taken another course, for he saith, this whole Distinction is without ground attributed to Gratian; Hist. Confess. Auric. p. 388. but how doth he prove it? From Ant. Augustinus his Dia­logue, where a MS. is cited that this was not Gratian's, but an elder Author's. And what is gotten by this? But the other answers, it must be Gratian's, because of the ci­tation out of the Digests, and other Books of Civil Law then lately found. If this will not do, he saith, Gratian hath many Errours, as the Roman Correctors observe. Yes truly do they; and about this Point several times; for the Councils of Lateran and Trent have otherwise deter­mined. But what is all this to the Tradition of the Church in Gratian's time?

Innocent III. in the Council of Lateran, enjoyns strict­ly the Practice of Confession once a year, under the Penalty of Excommunication, and of being deprived of Christian Burial; but there is not a Word of the Churches Tra­dition before, for the Ground of it. But finding several Opinions about it, and the Waldenses then opposing it, he resolves by his Authority to bind all Persons to it. But after this the Canonists allowed no more than Ecclesiasti­cal [Page 122] Institution for it; as is plain by the Gloss on the Canon Law, Dist. 5. de Poenit. Tit. In Poenitentia; but the Roman Correctours quote against it Council. Trident. Sess. 14. c. 5. i. e. a Council some 100 years after, must tell what the Tradition then was; but the Gloss saith, the Greeks had no such Tradition, and therefore were not bound to Confession. So that we have no evidence for any Catholick Tradition in this matter, before the Lateran Council.

2. But the Council of Trent hath gone beyond the Coun­cil of Lateran, and hath fixed the Divine Right of Con­fession on John 20. Whose sins ye remit, &c. and therefore I am now to shew, by the Confession of their own Writers, that this hath not been the Traditionary Sense of this Place.

Cajetan, not long before the Council first sate, in his Notes on this place confesses, that no Precept of Sacramen­tal Confession is contained in it. But how should it be of Divine Right in the sense of the Council of Trent, if there be no Command for it? Tes, by Cons quence, if they will obtain Remission of Sins; but this can by no means be in­ferred from hence, because the Remission of Sins by Bap­tism is implied in it; but none of them plead for par­ticular Confession before Baptism, in order to Remission; and therefore not after, unless some Command of Christ made it more necessary after Baptism than before, Vas­quez saith, that Cajetan means no more, than that it can­not Vasquez ubi supr. Catharin. in Cajet. p. 446. be proved out of this place; but Catharinus saith, that neither there nor in any other place doth Cajetan allow, that Auricular Confession can be proved out of Scripture.

Gabriel Biel confesses, he cannot find sufficient force to Biel in 4. sent. Dist. 17. q. 1. a. 1. conclude the Necessity of Confession from the Power of Abso­lution here granted; because it may be valid upon voluntary Confession of the Party; and therefore he resolves it into an unwritten Tradition.

[Page 123] Guide Brianson takes great pains to prove it out of this Brianson q. 8. Doc. 1. f. 138. place, but at last yields, that Christ's instituting such a Power, doth not bind Persons to confess their Faults to them that have it. For the Power of retaining doth not imply that no sins are retained which are not retained by the Priest upon Confession; neither then doth the Power of Absolution imply that no sins are remitted but such as are confessed to a Priest. And therefore he betakes himself as Biel doth, to unwritten Tradition; and so doth Nicol. De Orbellis ad l. 4. Dist. 17. Almain in 4. Dist. 17. de Orbellis.

Jac. de Almain debates the matter at large; and he says only that it is a probable Opinion, that this Confession is of divine Appointment; but he yields, that Christ's granting a Power of Absolution, d [...]th not make it a duty to confess to a Priest; and he saith, it is a false proposition, that where a Power of judging is given, others are bound to submit to it; for all that follows is, that their Sentence is valid if they do submit.

But the force of what the Council of Trent deduces from this place, lies wholly in this, as Vasquez observes, Vasquez ib. dub. 2. that because Christ hath given Authority to absolve, and they cannot exercise that Authority without Confession, therefore Confession is hereby made necessary. And he con­fesses, that scarce any have deduced the Argumert effectu­ally from this place. But he saith one thing very obser­vable, that if this place be extended to Remission of Sins in Baptism, then it can never prove the necessity of Sacra­mental Confession. And Greg. de Valentia as plainly owns, that the Fathers did understand it of Baptism; he names Greg. de Va­lent. de Ne­cessit. Confess. c. 3. Nat. Alex. de Sacr. Con­fess. p. 22. Cyprian ad Jub. Ep. 73. S. Cyprian, and S. Ambrose; but Natalis Alexander al­lows S. Cyril of Alexandria to have so understood it; and that Jansenius and Ferus followed him; but besides these S. Augustin interprets this place as S. Cyprian had done. For as S. Cyprian from hence infers the Power of Baptizing [Page 124] and granting Remission of Sins in the Guides of the Church; so S. Augustin saith, the Churches Charity by the H [...]ly Ghost looses the Sins of those who are her Members, and re­tains Aug. in Joh. Tr. 121. the sins of those who are not. And it may be obser­ved, that whereas St. Matthew speaks of the Power of Baptizing granted to the Apostles; S. John instead of that mentions this P [...]wer of remitting or retaining Sins, and S. Mark and S. Luke speak of Baptism; to which the one S. Mark. 16. 16. S. Luke 24. 47. joins S [...]lvation; and the other Remission of Sins. And the [...]efore this seems to be meant by our Saviour in the Words of S. John; and thus S. Peter exercised this Power of loosing on the converted Jews, Act. 2. 38. and his Power of binding on Simon Magus, Act. 8. 21.

Peter Lombard carries S. Augustin's meaning farther, Pet. Lomb. l. 4. Dist. 18. to the Power of Priests over the Sins of the Members of the Church; but then he limits this Power, and makes it no more than declarative; as I have observed already; and for this he quotes a notable passage of S. Jerom, Hieron. in Matth. c. 16. who saith, that Men are apt to assume too much to them­selves under pretence of this Power of the Keys, whereas God regards not the Sentence of the Priests but the Life of the Penitents.

But Natalis Alexander thinks there is no binding Power with respect to Baptism; Was there not as to Simon Magus? And as long as every year the Church judged of the com­petency of Persons for it? When Christ spake these words the Church was wholly to be formed, and it was a great Power lodged with the Apostles and their Successors to admit into the Church, or to exclude from it, not as private Persons, but by Authority from Christ himself. But then this Power is vain and idle in a constituted Church. By no means; they have still a Power of casting out and taking in again; and of imposing such Acts on Offenders, as may give satisfaction to the Church, whose [Page 125] Honour suffers, and whose Discipline is broken. But the question is, Whether by Christ's appointment under the Gospel no known mortal sin can be pardon'd to baptized Persons without Confession of it to a Priest? And whe­ther these words of our Saviour do imply it?

Scotus is by no means satisfied with mens Reasoning out of this place, that because Christ hath given such a Power, Scot. in l. 4. Dist. 17. q. unica. therefore it is mens duty to confess their sins; For, saith he, this only implies the usefulness and efficacy of this Power if it be made use of; as in Confirmation, none think themselves damned if they do not use it though it be very useful; and therefore he goes another way to work, viz. by joyning this precept and that of loving God and our selves together with it. But how doth this prove that a man ought to take this particular way? Truly, Scotus here shews his Sub [...]ilty. Suppose there be another way that is harder, and this be found more easie, he thinks a man is bound to take the shortest and easiest way, viz. by Confession and Absolution.

But for all this his heart did misgive him, and he could not but see, that this proved nothing, unless this way of Confession were first proved to be a secure way. And therefore he puts the Case, that if it be not proved by these Words, it may be by S. James, Confess your faults one to ano [...]her. No, saith he, this will not do; for which he gives this Reason, that it holds no more for confession to a Priest than to any other; therefore, after all, he is willing to resolve it into some unwritten Tradition, since there was no convincing evidence for it either in this or any other place of Scripture. Which shew'd they ran to Tradition, when they had nothing else to say.

Bonaventure denies that Christ himself app [...]inted t [...]e Bonav. in 4. Dist. 17. q. 3. Confession of sins; for which he gives this reason, lest it should prove an occasion of sinning; ne ex verbis Domini dare­tur [Page 126] aliquibus recidivandi occasio; but afterwards he thinks the Apostles appointed it, and S. James published it; which Scotus utterly denies. But to the place of S John, Bonaven­ture saith it was not enough to have it implied in the Priest's Power, because it being a harder duty than Absolution, it requir'd a more particular Command. Which was but rea­sonably said; especially when Bellarmin after others, Bell. de Poen. l. 2. c. 12. urges, that it is one of the most grievous and burthensome Precepts; but his Inference from it is very mean, that therefore it must have a divine Command to inforce it on the People; but Bonaventure's Argument is much stron­ger, that it ought then to have been clearly expressed. But as to the Peoples yielding to it, other accounts are to be given of that afterwards.

Alexander Hales observes, that if Christ had intended a command of Confession, John 20. it would have been ex­pressed Alex. Sum. 3. p. q. 18. num. 3. art. 2. to those who are to confess, and not to those who are to absolve; as he did to those who were to be baptized, John 3. Except a man be born of water, &c. so Christ would have said, except a man confess his sins, &c. and he gave the same Reasons why Christ did not himself insti­tute it, which Bonaventure doth, who used his very words.

And now who could have imagined that the Coun­cil of Trent would have attempted to have made men believe that-it was the sense of the Universal Church that Christ instituted Confession in John 20? when so many great Divines even of the Church of Rome so expresly de­nied it; as I have made appear from themselves.

But now to give an account by what steps and degrees and on what occasions this Auricular Confession came into the Church, these things are to be considered.

[Page 127] 1. In the first Ages, pu [...]lick, scandalous Offenders after Baptism, were by the Discipline of the Church brought to publick Penance; which was called Exomologesis; which originally signifies Confession. And by this, Bellarmin Bell. de Poen. l. 3. c. 6. saith the Ancients u [...]derstood either Confession alone, or joyned with the other parts of Penance; but Albaspineus shews, that it was either taken for the whole course of Albasp. Obs. l. 2. c. 26. publick Penance, or for the last and solemn act of it, when the Bishop led the Penitents from the entrance of the Church up to the B [...]dy of the Congregation, where they expressed their abhorrence of their faults in the most penitent manner, by their Actions as well as by Words. So that this was a real and publick Declaration of their sorrow for their sins, and not a Verbal or Auricular Confession of them. The same is owned by La Cerda. But Boileau pretends La Cerda. Advers. Sacr. c. 142. p. 2. Hist. Confess. Auric. c. 4. p. 72. that it had not this sense till after the Novatian Heresie and the Death of Irenaeus; and that before that time it signified Confession according to the sense of the Word in Scripture. This seems very strange, when Baronius himself confesses, that Tertullian us [...]s it for that part of Baron. ad A. D. 56. Penance which is called Satisfaction; and Bellarmin grants it is so used both by Tertullian and Irenoeus; when he saith the Woman seduced by Marcus, afterwards spent her days in Exmologesi. What! in continual Confession of Iren. l. 1. c. 9. her sin? No, but in Penitential Acts for it; and so Petavius understands it, both in Irenoeus and Tertullian, Petav. Not. ad Epiphan. p. 71. De la Penit. publique, l. 2. c [...]. 13. n. 9. and he saith, it did not consist onely or principally in Words but in Actions, i. e. it was nothing of kin to Au­ricular Confession, which is a part of Penance distinct from satisfaction. And to make these the same, were to con­found the different parts of the Sacrament of Penance, as the [...]ouncil of Trent doth distinguish them.

[Page 128] But besides this, there were several other Circumstan­ces. which do make an apparent difference between these Penitential Acts and the modern notion of Con­fession.

1. The Reason of them was different. For, as Rigal­tius Rigalt. not. in. Tert. de P [...]n. observes, the penitential Rigour was taken up after great Numbers were admitted into the Church; and a great dishonour was brought upon Christianity by the looseness or inconstancy of those who professed it. There were such in S. Paul's time in the Churches of Corinth, and elsewhere; but although he gives Rules about such, yet he mentions no other than avoiding or excommuni­cating the guilty Persons, and upon due Sorrow and Re­pentance receiving them in again; but he imposes no necessity of Publick or Private Confession in order to Re­mission; much less of every kind of mortal sin, though it be but the breach of the tenth Commandment, as the Council of Trent doth; yet this had been necessary in case he had thought, as that declares, that God will not forgive upon other terms. And so much the rather, be­cause the Evangelists had said nothing of it; and now Churches began to fill, it was absolutely necessary for him to have declared it, if it were a necessary condi­tion of Pardon for sins after Baptism. But although the Apostles had given no Rules about it, yet the Christian Churches suffering so extremely by the Reproaches cast upon them, they resolved, as far as it was possible, to take care to prevent any scandalous Offences among them. To this end, the actions of all Persons who professed themselves Christians were narrowly watched; and their faults, especially such as were scandalous, complained of; and then if they confessed them, or they were convicted of them, a severe and rigorous Discipline was to be under­gone by them before they were restored to Communion; [Page 129] that their Enemies might see how far the Christians were from incouraging such enormities as they were ac­cused of. They were charged with Thyestean Suppers and promiscuous mixtures; whereas, any Persons among them who were guilty of Homicide or Adultery were dischar­ged their society, and for a great while not admitted upon any terms; and afterwards, upon very rigorous and severe terms. And besides these, to preserve the purity of their Religion in times of Persecution, they allowed no Compliance with the Gentile Idolatry; and any tendency to this, was looked upon as a degree of Apostasie, and censured accordingly. And about these three sorts of sins the severity of the Primitive Discipline was chiefly exercised; which shews, that it proceeded upon quite different grounds from those of the Council of Trent about Auricular Confession.

2. The method of proceeding was very different; for here was no toties quoties allow'd; that men may sin, and confess, and be absolved; and then sin the same sin again, and confess again, and receive Absolution in the same manner. The Primitive Church knew nothing of this way of dealing with Sinners upon Confession. If they were admitted once to it that was all. So Pamelius him­self Pamel. not. 1. in Tert. de. Poenit. Albasp. Obs. l. 2. c. 5. Petav. ad E­piph. p. 236. Append. ad Epiph. c. 3. p. 91. grants, and produces several Testimonies of Fathers for it; and so doth Albaspineus and Petavius. Dare any say this is the sense of the Church of Rome about Con­fession, that a man cannot be received a second time to Confess and be absolved from the same sin? How then can they pretend any similitude between their Con­fession and the ancient Exomologesis? Besides, none ever received Absolution from the ancient Church till full sa­tisfaction performed. But in the Church of Rome, Ab­solution is given before Satisfaction; and although some [Page 130] have complained of this, as a great abuse; yet they have been sharply answer'd, that it is to call in question the Conduct of the Church for five hundred years; and they may as well question many other things, which depend up­on the Authority of the Present Church.

3. The Obligation to Confession is very different from what it was in the ancient Exomologesis. Now by the Doctrine of the Church of Rome, a person looks on him­self as bound in Conscience to confess every Mortal sin; but in the Ancient Church none can imagine that per­sons were bound to undergo the Exomologesis for every mortal sin, there being no Penitential Canons which did ever require it; but they had respect to some particular sins, and the Penance was proportion'd to them.

We ought to take notice of two things with respect to the Discipline of the Ancient Church, which will shew the different notion it had of these things from what is now current in the Church of Rome.

1. That it did not exclude those from all hopes of Sal­vation whom it excluded from Penance; as may be seen in the Illiberitan Council, where many are wholly shut out from the Church, whom we cannot think they [...]. Illiber. c. 1, 2, 3, &c. thought uncapable of Salvation. From whence it fol­lows, that they did not look on Confession and Absolu­tion as a necessary condition of Salvation; but now in the Church of Rome they allow Confession to all, be­cause they think they cannot otherwise be in a state of Salvation in an ordinary way. But in the Ancient Church they could not look on the desire of Confession as neces­sary, for to what purpose should they make that neces­sary when they denyed the thing? But in the Church of Rome, they make the desire necessary, because they hold the thing it self to be so, if there be means to have it.

[Page 131] 2. That the Penitential Canons never extended in the Primitive Church to all those sins which the Church of Rome now accounts Mortal, and therefore necessary to be confessed. The Council of Trent saith expresly, they must confess omnia & singula peccata mortalia—etiam occulta—and an Anathema is denounced against him De Poenit. can. 7. that denies it to be necessary to Remission of them. Now if we consider their notion of mortal sins, we shall easily discern the vast difference between the Obligation to Confession by the Council of Trent, and by the old Pe­nitential Canons. For mortal sins are not only all Vo­luntary Acts committed against the known Laws of God, but against the Laws of the Church; and even ve­nial sins may become mortal by the Disposition of the Person, and by other circumstances, which the Casuists set down at large; now the Council of Trent doth ex­presly oblige men, not only to relate the Acts them­selves, but all Circumstances which change the kind of Sin. And this is a racking the Consciences of Men far beyond whatever we find in the old Penitential Canons; for, Petavius confesses that many sins now accounted mortal, Petav. not. ad Epiph. p. 238. had no Penance appointed for them by the old Canons; and therefore I need not take any pains to prove it: If any one hath a mind to be satisfied, he may see it in Grego­ry Nyssen's Canonical Epistle, where he owns that seve­ral of those sins, for which the Scripture excludes from Greg. Nyss. Epist. ad Let. c. 4, 5. the Kingdom of Heaven, have no Canonical Penance pre­scribed them by the ancient Canons of the Church. Which shews a mighty difference from the Rule of the Council of Trent.

The most plausible place in Antiquity brought for all mortal sin, is that of S. Cyprian, where he saith, that some Cypr. de lap- [...]is, [...]. 23. confessed their very thoughts, though they had not proceed­ed [Page 132] to actual sin. It is true, that he doth speak of some such; but was it for sins of thought against the tenth Command? No; but it is very plain, that he speaks of that sin which was thought to imply a renouncing Christianity, and S Cyprian elsewhere calls summum delictum, and the Sin ag [...]inst the Holy Ghost; viz. con­senting to any Act of gentile Idolatry; and yet Saint Cypr. Ep. 10. Cyprian had much ado to perswade those who were actually guilty to submit to due Penance for it; but they obtained Tickets from the Confessors, and were ad­mitted to communion without undergoing the Disci­pline of the Church, the consequence whereof would be, that the Discipline would be lost, and the Church over-run with Apostates; this makes S. Cyprian plead hard against such practices, and among other argu­ments he uses this of the great tenderness of some, who because they had entertained such thoughts of doing as others did, for their own safety, they offered to unbur­then their Consciences before them, and desired remedy for small Wounds; how much more ought they to con­fess their faults whose wounds are greater? This is the whole force of his reasoning; where the Thought and Act relate to the same sin; and that said to be no less than denying Christ, and sinning against the Holy Ghost. But there is no parity in the case of other sins; which even S. Cyprian calls minora delicta, being against men Cypr. Ep. 12. immediately; and there is no intimation in him that ever the thoughts of those sins were discovered, or that Persons were under any obligation by the Rules of the Church to do it.

2. Private Offenders were sometimes advised in those first Ages for the ease of their Consciences to make Con­fession [Page 133] of their sins; of which we see an instance as to the Practice in one Case in S. Cyprian's time. And Ter­tullian compares such Persons who avoid it, to those who have such secret Ulcers that they chuse rather to perish than to discover them. Now in Cases of this nature he advises to Confession and publick penitential Acts, that so they may in the Judgment of the Church have the se­cret Wounds of their Consciences healed. And this is that which Origen doth advise to in such Cases, to seek out a wise spiritual Physician, and to make known his in­ward Orig. in Le­vit. Hom. 2. in Psal. 37. Hom. 2. in Luc. Hom. 17. distemper to him, and to follow his advice and di­rection, as to the Method of Cure. Now this we never oppose; but the only Question is, whether it be neces­sary for all Persons, and for every Mortal Sin, to make Confession of it to the Priest, that it may be forgiven; and Origen never once supposes this; for he mentions several other ways for the Remission of Sins after Baptism, by Martyrdom, by Alms, by forgiving and converting others, by great Love to God, and in the last place he brings in this of a Laborious Penance and Confession. Either the for­mer ways are sufficient without this, or not; if they are, then this is not necessary to the Remission of all mortal Sins; if not, to what purpose doth he mention so many ways, when this one is sufficient without them and all those are insufficient without this? For Boileau confesses, that no mortal sins according to them can be remitted, Hist. Confess. Auric. c. 5. n. 8. where there is not at least the desire of this. But Origen shews the different ways of obtaining Remission, or else he doth not answer the difficulty; which was that the Jews had several sorts of Sacrifices for the Expiation of Sins, to which we have none answerable under the Gospel, Yes, saith Origen, Baptism answers to one sort, Martyrdom to another, Alms to a third, &c. and last of all, Penance [Page 134] to the Offering baked in the Frying Pan. From whence it is plain, that he looked on this as one particular way proper to some Cases, and not as a general Method for the Remission of all mortal Sins. But he urges that Ori­gen quctes Scripture for the Confession of Sins, as necessary, Hom. 2. in Psal. 37. But what Scripture? Even the Words of the Psalmist, I will confess my Iniquity. And was Confession to a Priest necessary under the Law? How then can those words prove it necessary under the Go­spel? Although therefore Origen might think it very con­venient in some cases for Penitents to unload their Consci­ences by Confession to a Spiritual Physician, yet we find no proof of any necessity of it, as to all mortal Sins. It is confes­sed, that publick Faults, either confessed or proved, had pub­lick Penance appointed for them by the Penitential Canons; but Boileau, after Arnauld, pleads, that even secret Sins being mortal, were not thought remissible by the Keys of the Church, without publick Penance. But this can never be proved to have been the Doctrine of the Ancient Church, and it is unreasonable to suppose; for then, all Persons must have undergone publick Penance who had any mor­tal Sin, and it must have been frequently born by the same Persons, both which are inconsistent with the An­cient Discipline. But they saw there was no other way to maintain the Necessity of Confession, but by this. For they could find none but publick Penance, and that by the Penitential Canons was prescribed only for some par­ticular scandalous Sins; and therefore they fansied, that Persons who committed other faults, were bound to con­fess them privately, and to undergo publick Penance for them. I do not deny, but some great Penitents, for se­cret Faults, would of their own accord submit to the pub­lick Discipline; but this was a voluntary Act in them, [Page 135] that by this means they might assure themselves the More of the sincerity of their own Repentance; and it being looked on as an Act of Humility and Piety, it made it go down the better with Voluntary Penitents.

3. For the sake of such Voluntary Penitents in great Churches, whose Cases required particular and private Examination and Direction, there was a Penitentiary ap­pointed, whose Office it was to receive their Confessions, and to direct and order the Method of their Penance. Of this we have a famous Instance in the Church of Constan­tinople, in the time of Nectarius, about which so much pains hath been taken for different purposes. That which seems most probable to me, is, that the Penitentiary was appointed to examine and judge of such Penitential Causes which were brought before him, (not being notorious,) and to give sentence according to the Canons; but espe­cially of Voluntary Confessions of Persons, whose Consci­ences were oppressed with the Guilt of Secret Sins; and to those he was to appoint Penance without revealing their Faults. Where the Facts were notorious and scan­dalous, I suppose the ancient Discipline of the Church (part whereof is to be seen in the Canonical Epistles) to Pandect. Ca­non. Vol. 2. have still continued at Constantinople, as well as in other Churches. But there were many private miscarriages, wherein great Prudence and Judgment was required, both to determine the Penance, and to manage it so, that it did not break out into an open Scandal. And for Cases of this Nature the Penitentiary was appointed; to whom all Persons might resort in private cases, and open their Consciences to him, and take his Directions how to per­form their Penitential Acts. So it was with that Person of Quality at Constantinople, who gave occasion to the [Page 136] abolishing the Office of Penitentiary, both there, and in all the Eastern Churches. She first went to the Peniten­tiary, as a voluntary Penitent, and confessed her Faults to him, and took his directions; and while she was per­forming her Penance in the Church, the Fact was com­mitted with the Deacon, which she afterwards confessed to the Penitentiary. Who being enraged at the Deacon, in probability through his desire to have him punished, the Fact came to be discovered, and the People to be highly offended: And it is not reasonable to suppose that the Penitentiary put her upon a publick Confession of her secret fault; but that it came out by his means; and therefore Nectarius thought fit no longer to put such a Trust into any Man's hand, which through his discovery might redound to the Dishonour of the Church, as that did.

What the effect was of abolishing this Office, is the great Question, whether the taking away publick or pri­vate Confession. If the Historians may be believed, it was the Necessity of making any Confession at all in secret; for the Right of receiving such Confessions, was devolved upon the Penitentiary; therefore when his Office was put down, where the Case was not notorious, every one must be left to his own Conscience; and that both Socrates Socr. l. 5. c. 19. Soz. l. 7. c. 16. and Sozomen affirm was the consequence of it. If only publick Confession was taken away, as some imagine, a se­cret Confession was still continued, how was it possible for the Historians to mistake the matter so grosly, by ma­king that the consequence of it? For, is every Man left to his own Conscience, where he is bound to go to Confession before he partakes of the Eucharist? And why should publick Penance be taken away on this occasion, where there seems to have been none; for that Person under­went [Page 137] to publick Penance upon her former Confession, for then her Penance would not have been done in the Church, but out of it, among the Penitents. But as the former was voluntary, so was the latter too; for here was no Accuser but her self; and for what Reason should publick and solemn Penance for notorious Cri [...]es, be taken away for the sake of the discovery of a Secret Confession? Whether the punishment of the Deacon were the Occasion of its coming out, or whatever it was, it seems evident to me, that she was not obliged to any publick Consession; be­cause Sozomen saith, the Penitentiary was chosen for his Gravity, Silence and Wisdom; but what Silence was there, if the Confessions were to be made publick. And on the other side, it is impossible to conceive, that if all Persons were then obliged to confess all mortal Sins after Baptism, that one Penitentiary should be sufficient in so vast a City as that of Constantinople was. Therefore I think it most probable, that the case of notorious and scandalous Offenders stood as it did, and so continued in S. Chrysostom's time; but this Office of Penitentiary re­lating to voluntary and secret Offenders was taken away; because a greater Scandal came to the Church by the dis­covery, when such a publick Disgrace made the Fact be­come notorious. And so this Act of Nectarius in taking away the Penitentiary's Office, and the Approbation of it by other Churches following the Example, evi­dently proves, that they did not look on Confession of s [...] ­cret Sins, as necessary to the Remission of them.

4. As the taking away the Penitentiary's Office shew­ed the Sense of the Church at that time against the Ne­cessity of Confession in order to Pardon, so it did likewise in order to the partaking of the Eucharist. For Socrates [Page 138] saith, that Eudaemon gave that Counsel to Nectarius, that Socr. l. 5. c. 19. he should remove the Penitentiary, and give every one leave to pass J [...]dgment on himself in his own Conscience, and so to partake of the Mysteries. The same is affirmed by Sozo­men. Which respects not the publick Discipline about Soz. l. 7. c. 16. Notorious Offenders, but the private Applications made by scrupulous Persons and secret Offenders to the Penitentia­ry in order to a right preparation for the Eucharist. And it is very probable, that it was then believed by many, that they could not be duly fitted for that Sacrament, un­less they had first unburthened their Consciences by a vo­luntary Confession to the Penitentiary, and followed his Directions. But this Office being taken away, the Questi­on now is, whether it were thought necessary to confess privately to any other? The Council of Trent declares, Concil. Trid. Sess. 13. c. 7. Can. 11. that Sacramental Confession is necessary to a worthy parta­king of the Eucharist, to every one that is conscious to him­self of any mortal sin; and whosoever holds the contrary is declared excommunicate ipso facto. But these Historians plainly deny it, and they are justified by S. Chrysostom, who speaks to the very Case; not about C [...]techumens, but such as would fit themselves for the Holy Eucharist. And he several times declares, that a man needs not reveal his sins to any but to God alone, in order to it. Nothing can be more Emphatical than what he saith to that purpose. For this Cause S. Paul saith, Let a man examin himself, and so let him eat of that [...]. S. Chrys. To. 6. p. 837. Hom. 8. d [...] Poenit. H [...]m. 28. in 1 ad Corin [...]. Bread, and drink of that Cup; he doth not lay open the secret Ulcer; he doth not bring the Accusation into a Theatre; he appoints no Witnesses of thy Transgressions; pass judgment within thine own Conscience, there examin thy faults, and call thy self [Page 139] to an account for the [...]ins of thy Life, where [...]o [...]e but God is present, who sees all things; amend thy faults, and so with a pure Conscience draw near to the holy Table, and partake of the Sacrifice there offered.

But left this should be thought one of those sudden elo­quent heats which Petavius saith, are hardly capable of Petav. Not. ad Epiphan. p. 244. good sense, if too strictly examined; we find him very cooly delivering the same Doctrine in his Exposition of those words of S. Paul. Than which nothing can be more inconsistent with the Doctrine and Practice of the Church of Rome, which makes Confession of our Sins to a Priest a necessary Preparation for the Eucharist. Catharinus saith, that if the Church had not limited the time, yet every Per­son Cathar. c. Ca­jetan. p. 453. would be bound to confess to a Priest, as often as he com­municated. And although he knew no mortal sin by himself, yet he would deserve the severest Censure for not confessing, because he took upon himself to be his own Judge. Can any 451. thing be more contrary to S. C [...]rysostom than this? Boi­leau confesses, that S. Chrysostom doth not here refer at Hist. Confess. Auric. p. 201. all to Confession to a Priest; then it follows, that he thought it not necessary to right participation of the Holy Eucha­rist. Here he speaks not of daily Examination of Con­science by the faithful; but of the solemn Judgment of Con­science by way of due Preparation; and so justifies the Fact of Nectarius in taking away the Penitentiaries Of­fice. But we are not to suppose so great and so zealous a Man would have done it against his Conscience, as he must, if he still thought Confession to a Priest necessary; and he doth not say, they need not go now to the Peniten­tiary, but that they need not diselose their sins to any. Not to a multitude, or in a theatrical manner, as some ex­pound [Page 140] it; but to none but God, which excludes the know­ledge of a sin [...]le Priest, as well as of a great number. I n [...]ed not insist on the other places in S. Chrysostom to that purpose, since these are sufficient for my design.

Cassian was a Disciple of S. Chrysostom, and he supposes Cassian. Col­lat. 20. c. 8. Confession to God alone to be sufficient for Remission of Sin, where mere modesty hinders men from consessing to men. Boileau answers, that he doth not speak of Sacramental Confession made to Priests; but of an Ascetick Confession a­mong Hist. Confess. Auric. c. 18. p. 286. the M [...]nks. But he speaks of a Confession to God as sufficient for Remission of Sins, and therefore must ex­clude the Necessity of any other.

5. After the taking away the Penitentiary's Office, the Publick Discipline of the Church, as to open and scanda­lous Offenders continued for some time in the Eastern as well as the Western Churches. No one speaks more ful­ly to this than S. Chrysostom; which makes me wonder at those who say the publick Penance was taken away by Nectarius, for in his 82. Homily on S. Matthew, towards the Conclusion he insists very much upon it; and not only charges the People not to come with their sins up­on them; but he speaks to those who ministred, to de­ny the Eucharist to open Offenders. And he saith, it would be charged as a great Fault upon them, if they knew such and permitted them to communicate. But how shall we knew them? I speak not, saith he, of those who are not, but of those who are known; and if any such did thrust themselves in, he bid them not be afraid to deny them; and if they durst not, he tells them, they should bring them to him, and he would rather lose his life than give that Sacrament to such unworthy receivers. But still he saith he speaks of open and notorious Offen [...]ers. Which [Page 141] shews plainly, that even S. Chrysostom never thought the publick Discipline was changed; since he declares so much Resolution to maintain it. And this could not be spoken by him while he was a Presbyter at Antioch, but after he came to the See of Constantinople. There was no doubt some alteration as to the Penitents, after the taking away the Penitentiary; but it was no more than his Office was concerned in. The old Penitential Canons remained still in force and were executed, as Oc­casion served; as appears by the Canons in Trullo so long after S. Chrysostom's time which refer to them. If all the publick Discipline had been laid aside so long before, to what purpose do those Bishops speak of them, as if they were still in force? See Canon 44, 46, 53, 54, 87. In the last Canon indeed they leave it to those who had the Power of binding and loosing to temper the severity of the Canons as they should judge convenient; but doth it hence follow, that the ancient Discipline as to publick Offen­ders was destroy'd? S. Chrysostom himself several times S. Chrys. in Matth. Hom. 71. In 2 Ep. ad. Cor. Hom. 18. Hom. 3 in Ep. ad Ephes. mentions those who were in the state of Penitents and the Prayer that was made for them; to what purpose, in case the whole Order of Penitents was taken away? He likewise speaks of the charge for the Penitents to go out. What a mockery, were this, if there were no Publick Dis­cipline then left? And lest it should be said, that these things were said by him at Antioch, before the fact of Nectarius, I have shew'd already that the latter Homilies on S. Matthew were made by him at Constantinople; and in his Liturgy there used the dismission of the Penitents was continued.

6. While the publick Discipline was kept in the seve­ral Churches none were injoyned to undergo it, but open and publick Offenders. The Evidence being so clear [Page 142] in Antiquity for the publick Penance of those who were bound to give the Church satisfaction before they re­ceiv'd Absolution from it; there was a necessity found by some learned Men of the Roman Communion to set up a new Hypothesis, viz. that by the Ancient Rules of the Church all Persons conscious to themselves of secret si [...]s were bound to undergo publick Penance for the Remission of their sins. The occasion of the debate was this. Some in the Church of Rome held no more necessary in case of mortal Sin to prepare men for Communion than Con­fession to a Priest and Absolution; others saw the fatal Petav. de la Penitence publique, l. 5. ch. 10. p. 64. Consequence of this, and therefore insisted on the Ne­cessity of Penance; both Parties made their Appeal to the Ancient Church; and both were mistaken. For, on the one side, there was no such Doctrine then held that Confession and Absolution did sufficiently prepare Persons for the Eucharist; and on the other, there was no good Evidence that any were enjoyned publick Penance for se­cret faults. But in the Case of such sins, the Confession was left to God in Secret; and a true and hearty Con­trition for them was thought the best as well as most necessary Preparation for the Eucharist.

Monsr. Arnauld saw well enough that without his Arn. de freq. Communione, Part. 2. c. 3. p. 205. Hypothesis, it was impossible to prove the Necessity of Confession in the Ancient Church; for he yields that the Church did not use the Power of the Keys but in Pub­lick. On the the other hand, Petavius urges, that on the Petav. l. 2, c. 5. n. 3. same Ground that they would reduce, as they pretended, the Ancient Discipline they must make many other altera­tions in the Church, and so justifie the Reformers. But Monsr. Arnauld was defective in his Proofs, as Petavius at large shews; not when he proves that the Penance was publick; but that all Persons under mortal sins were bound to undergo it. For Petavius makes it appear, [Page 143] that all such as are accounted mortal si [...]s in the modern sense, were not then thought necessary to be expiated by publick Penance; but only such as were notorious and scandalous, and he at large answers all Monsr. Ar­nauld's l. 6. c. 2, &c. Arguments. Notwithstanding which Morinus took up Monsr. Arnauld's Opinion, and without any Morin. Com. de Poenit. l. 10. c. 17. colour charges it on Theodore Archbishop of Ca [...]terbury, that [...]e first in his Penitential appointed publick Penance to be onely for publick Offences. But the learned Editor of the Abstract of Theodore's Penitential, hath fully vin­dicated him in this matter. Theod. Vind. p. 61, &c.

But after these, Boileau resumes the Opinion of Monsr. Arnauld, and lays it for the Foundation of his History of Auricular Confession. But he grants, that all the so­lemn Hist. Confess [...]. Auric. c. 2. and ceremonial Penance imposed by the Penitential Canons did not extend to all kind of mortal sins, but chief­ly to Idolatry, Adultery and Homicide; but this he in­sists upon, that some part of this publick Penance, viz. Ex­clusion from the Communion was inflicted on Persons guilty of secret mortal sins. But this will by no means do his business; for he is to prove that no secret mortal sin could be forgiven without Confession to a Priest; and that all persons were required by the ancient Church in case they were conscious to themselves of any such sins, to make them known, and to undergo publick Penance for them, before they could obtain Remission of them. We do not deny that Persons under Trouble of Conscience for secret sins, were from time to time advised to resort to their Guides, to make known their Cases to them, and to take their Directions; we do not deny that such Persons might be required by such Guides to withdraw themselves from joyning in the most solemn Acts of pub­lick Communion till they had manifested the sincerity of [Page 144] their Repentance, by Fastin [...], and Prayers, and other penitential Acts; we do not deny, that some of these Persons might either by Advice or of their own Accord joyn themselves with the publick Penitents, as is well known in the Case of Fabiola at Rome so much magni­fied by S. Jerom; but this is the thing we desire to see proved, that no sin whatsoever of a mortal nature (as it is defined in the Church of Rome) was then thought capable of Remission by the penitential Acts of the Party, (especially by true Contrition) without Confession to a Priest and Absolution from him. And this is the true state of the Case; and I can find nothing produced by him to this purpose which deserves to be considered.

7. As the publick Discipline declined, Persons were ex­horted to make private Confession of their sins; if they could not be brought to publick Penance. Thence in the Greek Church came the Penitentials of Johannes Jejuna­tor (who first took upon himself the Title of Oecumeni­cal Patriarch in the time of Mauritius to the great Of­fence of the Bishops of Rome) and of some others after him.

Morinus grants that there was a great alteration in the Joh. Morin. Com de Poen. l. 6. c. 22, 23. Greek Church about this matter; he thinks it began with the business of the Penitentiary, but after the publick Discipline was disused, instead of that, he saith, came up a secret Confession and Penance; which was left to the c. 23. n. 1, 2. honesty, and piety of the Penitent, and not required by any Canonical Authority among them; and so he saith it continued from the time of Nectarius to this day, as to the People. So that we have a plain Confession from him, that there is no Rule in the Greek Church requi­ring this secret Confession of Sins in order to the forgive­ness [Page 145] of them. But it is observable concerning the mo­dern Greeks, that if Persons do make Confession among them, they think themselves obliged to keep to the old Penitential Canons, and blame Joh. Jejunator for rece­ding from them; for Simeon of Thessalonica saith, they had them from the Fathers, and the Fathers by Tradi­tion down from the Apostles. But although they are there­in mistaken, yet they shew how different their Tradition is from that of the Roman Church, which thinks it self under no such obligation, but allows Absolution to be granted upon Confession, and a right of Communion without Penance performed, for which there is no co­lour, as to any ancient Tradition either of the Eastern or Western Church.

In the Western Church we find the publick Discipline fallen to decay in the beginning of the ninth Age, and Charles the Great summoning several Councils for put­ting things into as good an Order as they would then bear. In the second Council of Cavaillon, A. D. 813. we find a Complaint, Can. 25. that the old Canonical Penance was generally disused; and neither the ancient Order of Excommunicating or Absolving was observed. Which is a plain and ingenuous acknowledgment that they had gone off from the ancient Tradition of the Church; and therefore they pray the Emperor's Assistance, that the publick Discipline might be restored for publick Offenders, and the ancient Canons be brought into use again. From whence it follows, that at that time notorious Offenders escaped with private Confession and Pe­nance; and even that was done by halves, can. 32. and some thought it not necessary to do it at all, can. 33. And upon this Occasion, they do not declare it necessa­ry for the Remission of Sins to confess even the most se­cret [Page 146] mortal Sins to a Priest; but very fairly say, that both are useful; for Confession to God purgeth the Sin; and to the Priest, teaches men how their sins may be purged. For God who is the Author and giver of Health, giveth it often by the Inv [...]sible Operation of his Power, and often by the means of Physicians.

Boileau yields, that there were some then in the Roman Hist. Confess. Auric. c. 25. n. 3. Church, who denied Confession to Men to be necessary, but he saith, they were Adversaries and Rebels. This had been a good Answer, if the Council had called them so; which it doth not, but on the contrary declares, that God doth of­ten forgive sin immediately without the Priests Interposi­tion, or else the latter Clause signifies nothing. And the most it saith before, is, that Confession to a Priest is useful in the Church; which is not the the thing disputed by us, but the Necessity of it; and his Critical Observations of Utrumque signifie just nothing, unless he had proved that the Council had before said that both were necessary, which it doth not. He doth not deny, that the Opinion c. 29. p. 387. of the Sufficiency of Confession to God alone did continue in the Church to the time of the Council of Lateran, and that it gave Occasion to the Canon, which enforced the Necessity of Confession to a Priest; but he adds, that learned and pi­ous Men may have false Opinions before the Judgment of the Church. So that at last we find Universal Tradition is given up, and the Necessity of Auricular Confession is resolved into the Authority of the Roman Churches Defi­nition, or rather, the Pope's Declaration of it, either with or without the Consent of the Lateran Council. But he saith, The Fathers did not speak so exactly of the Trinity be­fore the Council of Nice; nor the Greek Fathers of Grace and Predestination before S. Augustin. If this be true, it is impos­sible to prove either of those great Points merely by Tra­dition; [Page 147] for those Fathers either delivered the sense of the Church, or they did not; if they delivered the sense of the Church, then either the sense of the Church was doubtful, or they did not understand it; if the sense of the Church were doubtful, then it is plain those Doc­trines could not be proved by Tradition; if the sense of the Church were not doubtful, but the Fathers did not understand it, then how is it possible that the Churches Tradition should be an Infallible Guide, when even the Fathers of the Church were mistaken about it? But I have sufficiently proved, that not only before, but even after the Council of Lateran there was no Universal Tra­dition for the Necessity of Auricular Confession.


A CATALOGUE of some BOOKS Printed for Henry Mortlock, at the Phoenix in S. Paul's Church-Yard.

A Bational Account of the Grounds of Protestant Religion, being a Vindication of the Lord Archbishop of Canterbury's Relation of a Conference, &c. from the pretended Answer by T. C. Wherein the True Grounds of Faith are cleared, and the False discovered; the Church of England vindicated from the Impu [...]ati­on of Scism; and the most important particular Controversie bêtween us and those of the Church of Rome throughly examined: By Edward Stillingfleet, D. D. and Dean of S. Paul's, Folio. the Second Edition.

Origines Britiannicae: Or the Antiquity of the British Churches; with a Preface concerning some pretended Antiquities relating to Britain, in vindication of the Bishop of S. Asaph. by Edward Stillingfleet D. D. Dean of S. Paul's, Folio.

The Rule of Faith: Or an Answer to the Treatise of Mr. J. S. entituled, Sure footing, &c. by John Tillorson D. D. to which is adjoyned, A Reply to Mr. J. S.'s third Appendix. &c. by Edward Stillingfleet. D. D.

A Letter to Mr. G. giving a true Account of a late Conference at the D. of P's.

A second Letter to Mr. G. in answer to two Letters lately published con­cerning the Conference at the D. of P's.

Veteres Vindicati: In an Expostulary Letter to Mr. Sclater of Putney, upon his Consensus Veterum, &c. wherein the absurdity of his Method, and the weakness of his Reasons are shewn; His false Aspersions upon the Church of England are wiped off, and her Faith concerning the Euch [...]rist proved to be that of the primi [...]ive Church: Together with Animadversions on Dean Boileau's French translation of, and Remarks upon Bertram.

An Answer to the Compiler of Nubes Testium: Wherein is shewn, That Anti­quity (in relation to the Points in Controversie set down by him) did not for the first five hundred Years Believe, Teach and Practice as the Church of Rome doth at present Believe, Teach and Practice; together with a Vindication of Veteres Vindicati from the late weak and disingenuous Attempts of the Author of Transubstantiation Defended by the Author of the Answer to Mr. Sclater of Putney.

A Letter to Father Lewis Sabran Jesuit, in answer to his Letter to a Peer of the Church of England; wherein the Postscript to the Answer to the Nubes Testium, is Vindicated, and Father Sabran's Mistakes farther discovered.

A second Letter to Father Lewis Sabran Jesuit, in Answer to his Reply.

A Vindication of the Principles of the Author of the Answer to the Compi­ler of Nubes Testium in answer to a late pretended Letter from a Dissenter to the Divines of the Church of England.

Scripture and Tradition Compared, in a Sermon preached at Guild-Hall-Chapel Nov. 27. 1687. by Edward Stillingfleet D. D. Dean of S. Paul's, the second Edition.

A Discourse concerning the Nature and Grounds of the Certainty of Faith, in Answer to J. S. his Catholick Letters. by Edward Stillingfleet, D. D. Dean of St. Paul's.

An Historical Examination of the Authority of General Councils, shewing the false Dealing that hath been used in the publishing of them, and the Diffe­rence amongst the Papists themselves about their Number. The second Edition with Corrections and Alterations.

AN APPENDIX, In Answer to some late Passages of J. W. of the Society of Jesus, concerning the Prohibition of Scripture in Vulgar Languages by the Council of Trent.

SInce the Publication of the foregoing Book, I have met with a Reflexion upon it made by J. W. in the Preface to a Treatise lately Reprinted by him. Wherein, he observes that a great part of the Objections made against them are either grounded on mistakes, or touch points of Discipline not of Faith, which alone they are bound to defend. This last Clause I could not but wonder at, since the new Title of his Book is, A Defence of the Doctrine and Holy Rites of the Roman Catholick Church, &c. Why should I W. take such needless pains to defend the Rites of the Church, if they are bound to defend nothing but Points of Faith? I had thought the Honour and Authority of the Church had been concer­ned in its Commands and Prohibitions, as well as in its [Page 150] Definitions and Decrees. And although it be not pre­tended, that the Church is Infallible in Matters of Dis­cipline; yet it is a strong Prejudice against any pretence to Infallibility in a Church, if it be found to err notoriously in any thing of general Concernment to the Catholick Church.

But how comes my late Book to be made an Example? As for instance, (saith he) I find in a Book newly Pub­lished, with this Title, The Council of Trent Examin'd and Disprov'd by Catholick Tradition, that for 15 Pages together Dr. St. labours to prove that there is no Catholick Tradition against Translating Scripture into Vulgar Langua­ges. Whereas I expresly say, that the Prohibition of reading the Scripture so translated without a particular License, was that which I undertook to shew could not be justi­fied by any Catholick Tradition; And that there was a General Consent of the Catholick Church, not merely for the Translations of Scripture into Vulgar Languages, but for the free use of them by the People. Which I made out by these Particulars,

1. That where-ever the Christian Religion prevailed, the Scripture was Translated into the Vulgar Language for the Peoples benefit. Which I proved from the Ancient Italick Versions before St. Jerom's time, the Gothick, Per­sian, Armenian, Syriack, Coptick and Aethiopick Translati­ons; without the least prohibition of the Common use of them.

2. That where a Language grew into Disuse among the People there the Scripture was Translated into the Tongue which was better understood. And for this I instanced in the Arabick Versions after the prevalency [Page 151] of the Saracens in the Eastern and Southern Parts, and after the Moors coming into Spain.

3. That even after the Primitive Times, Christian Princes and Bishops did take Care that the People should read the Scriptures in their own Language. For Princes, I instanced in Ludovicus Pius and Alfred; for Bishops, in Waldo Bishop of Fressing, Methodius and Cyrill, &c.

4. That the Pope himself in the 9th Century did approve of it; and for a Reason common to all times and Churches, viz. that All People and Languages were to praise God, and that God himself had so commanded.

5. That Gregory VII. was the first Person who for­bad the use of Scripture and Divine Offices in the Vulgar Tongue, and was not ashamed to own that the Church saw cause to alter several things from what they were in the Primitive Church.

6. That upon the setting up the Inquisition by In­nocent III. this Prohibition took place in France and Spain, and other Places.

7. That some noted Divines of the Church of Rome have highly commended it; and said that the taking of it away would be pernicious and destructive to Faith and Devotion.

8. That the Prohibition in the Church of Rome is built on the Authority of the Council of Trent, which appoin­ted the Index to be made, in which the fourth Rule for­bids all Persons the use of the Scripture in the Vulgar [Page 152] Tongue without a particular License, and whosoever presumes to doe it is to be denied Absolution.

9. From hence it follows, that the Council of Trent is evidently disproved, as to Catholick Tradition, for any Foundation of such a Prohibition.

And what now saith J. W. against all this? He would gladly know against whom I dispute. Against J. S. and all such who would make the World believe the Council of Trent did proceed upon Catholick Tradition. To prove I am mistaken, he tells me in his 6th Chap. I may find an Account of several new Translations of Scripture into Vul­gar Tongues, made by Catholicks and approved in the Ro­man Church. Then he mentions an English Translation made by the Rhemish and Doway Colleges; and in French by the Doctours of Lovain; and some others. What now follows from hence? Is it any Mistake in me to say, There was such a Prohibition of Reading the Scripture in the Church of Rome, and inforced by the Rule made by Appointment of the Council of Trent? This had been indeed to the purpose if it could have been proved. I do not deny, that there have been such Translations made, where it was found impossible to hinder all Trans­lations; and the use of them have been connived at or allow'd to some particular persons, whom they were o­therwise secure of. But such Translations are like the Galenists allowing some Chymical Medicines to their Pa­tients; they declare against their use as dangerous; but if the Patient will have them, then pray take them of my Apothecary, who is a very honest man and prepares mischievous Medicines better than another. This is just the Case of the Church of Rome, as to Translations of Scripture; If we ask their Opinion in general, whether [Page 153] Translations be allowable or not, their Answer hath been formerly very free and open, by no means; for they are very dangerous and mischievous things. And here be­sides those I have already mentioned, I could produce many more to the same purpose. But alas! these men lived before the Age of Mis-representing and Expounding. Now all is Mistake on our side, and Infallibility on theirs. We cannot for our hearts understand their Doctrines or Practices aright, although we take never so much pains and care to doe it. One would think by the present way of dealing with us, that the Church of Rome were like the New Name on the White Stone, which no man knows Apoc. 2. 17. but he that hath it; and so it were impossible for any else to understand it, but such as are in it. I thought my self pretty secure from Mistaking, when I pitched on the Council of Trent for my Guide. But it seems, I am mistaken here too: How so? Did not the Council of Trent appoint the Congregation of the Index at first, Sess. 18? Did it not own that the Matters of it were prepared be­fore its Dissolution? And if there were a Prohibition of the free use of the Scripture in Vulgar Languages by the Rules of the Index, is not the Council of Trent justly chargeable with that Prohibition? Especially when the Title in the Roman Edition is Regulae Indicis Sacrosanctoe Synodi Tridentinoe jussu editoe.

Jacob. Ledesma was one of the same Accedit ad hoc, locupletissimum Testimonium, atque Decretum ex Indice librorum prohibitorum per Patres à Tridentina Synodo delectos conscripto & Authoritate Sanctiss. D. nostri Pii 4. P. M. comprobato Regu­la. 4. Jac. Ledesma. De Divin. Script. quavis lingua non legend. c. 51. Society with J. W. and he frankly owns the Prohibition of reading the Scripture, made by the Rule of the Index, to have been done by the Authority of the Coun­cil of Trent.

The Faculty at Paris in the Articles sent to Gregory XIII. against the Translation of Rene Benoit; several times [Page 154] own the Rules of the Index as done by the Council of Trent. Quacunque Authoritate transferantur in Vulgarem linguam Biblia & edantur, vetat idem sacrosanctum Concilium ea passim sine discrimine permitti.

The same Ledesma goes farther, and vouches the Au­thority of the Council of Trent in this matter, from the Decree Sess. 23. c. 8. where it forbids all the Parts of the Mass to be in the Vulgar Tongue. Which could not be reasonable, if the Scripture were allowed to be translated. Alphonsus à Castro, thinks the case so alike, that a pro­hibition Alphons. à Castro de he­ret. Punit. l. 3. c. 6. of one amounts to a prohibition of the other too, because the greater Part of the Office is taken out of the Scriptures, and if the Scripture may be translated, he saith, it must follow that Divine Offices ought to be in the vul­gar Tongue. But to return to the Index.

The Congregation of the Index was (as is said) e­stablished by the Council in the 18. Session as the Coun­cil it self owns in the last Session; and withall, that the Rules of it were then formed, but because of the multi­plicity Concil. Trid. Sess. 25. c. 15. and variety of the Books, the matter of the Index was referred to the Pope, and to be published by his Au­thority, as likewise the Catechism, Missal and Breviary. So that the Rules of the Index have the same Authority in the Church of Rome with the Roman Catechism, Missal and Breviary.

Pius IV. in his Bull, when he first set forth the In­dex A. D. 1564. owns that it was finished by the Fathers appointed by the Council of Trent, but it was remitted to him by the Council, that it might be approved by him and published by his Authority. And he strictly commands the Rules of it to be observed under pain of Mortal Sin; and Excommunication, ipso jure. After him Clement VIII. in his Quod In­dice & Regu­lis confectisper Patres à Ge­nerali Synode T [...]identina de­le [...]os sanci­ [...]um est—Praeter ea quae T [...]dentino­rum Patrum Regul [...]s su­pradictis de­creta sunt. Instructions about the Rules of the Index owns [Page 155] them to be made by the Fathers of the Council of Trent, And the same Pope is so far from renewing the Power of granting Licenses to read the Scripture in the vulgar Languages, that he declares against them. For by the 4th Rule of the Index, the Ordinary and Inquisitor by the Advice of the Parish Priest or Consessor might permit Per­sons to read the Bible in the vulgar Language, so the Translation were made by Catholick Authours; and it was apprehended by some, that the new Printing the Rule might be giving new Authority to Bishops and Inqui­sitors to grant Licenses, therefore the Pope declares a­gainst it; and saith it was contrary to the Command and use of the Roman Church and Inquisition, which ought to be inviolably observed. In pursuance of this we find in the Roman Index of prohibited Books, these words, Bid­lia vulgari quocunque idiomate conscripta; i. e. All Bibles in vulgar Languages are prohibited. Therefore I cannot understand how the giving License to Persons since the Declaration of Clemens VIII. is consistent with the Duty which Persons of that Communion owe to the Authori­ty of the Roman See, unless they can produce a Revoca­tion of the Bull of Clemens VIII. and some latter Explica­tions of the fourth Rule which take away the force of his. But instead of that, Alexander VII. who published the Index again, after Clement VIII. owns that the first Index was made by Authority of the Council of Trent: Qui sacrosanc­ti Concilii Tridentini auctoritate prodierat. and it is observable that in his Bull A. D. 1664. he not onely prefixes the Rules of the Index, but the Observa­tions and Instruction of Clement VIII. and confirms all by his Apostolical authority; and injoyns the punctual Ob­servation of the Orders contained therein inviolably; un­der the same pains which were expressed in the Bull of Pius IV. Therefore as far as I can understand, the Fa­culty [Page 156] of granting Licenses to reade the Translations of the Bible is taken away as far as the Pope's authority can doe it.

To what purpose then are we told of some modern Translations, as long as the use of them is forbidden by the Pope's Authority? And no Ordinaries can have Authority to grant Licenses against the Popes solemn Declaration to the contrary; nor can any of that Com­munion with good Conscience make use of them.

But I am told there are Translations approved in the Roman Church. By whom have they been approved? By the Pope, or the Congregation of the Index? I do not sind any such Approbation given to any of them. But on the contrary even in France, such Translations have been vehemently opposed by the Bishops and Divines there, as being repugnant to the Sense of the Ro­man Church. And this is apparent by a Book publi­shed by Order of the Gallican Clergy, A. D. 1661. Where-in it is said that it was the common and unanimous Sense and Practice of all Or­thodox E quibus pateat fuisse semper com­munem & unanimem Orthodoxorum omnium sensum ac usum; divinos Libros ac Officia Ecclesiastica, ver­naculo Idiomate neutiquam redden­di; utpote Christianae Reipubl. dam­nosum, ac rudibus & imperit is scan­dali occasionem praebens. Collectio Auctorum Version. vulg. damnant. Monit. ad Lector. Persons, that neither the Scrip­tures nor divine Offices ought to be put into Vulgar Languages, it being injuri­ous to the Christian Church, and giving Occasion of Offence to the weak and un­learned. How then can we imagine that such Translations should not onely be allowed but approved among them?

And besides the entire Treatises there collected against them, of Card. Hosius, Lizetius, Spiritus Roterus, Le­desma, &c. and the Fragments and Testimonies of seve­ral others; we have a particular account of the procee­dings of the Sorbon as to this matter.

[Page 157] In the Censure of Erasmus, Dec. 17. 1527. the Sorbon declared Vulgar Translations of Scripture to be dangerous and pernicious.

The like Declaration had been made before A. D. 1525. and that all Translations of the Bible, or of the Parts thereof ought rather to be suppressed than tolerated.

A. D. 1607. The Faculty again declared, that it did not approve any Translations of Scripture into the Vulgar Language.

But J. W. instances p. 26. in some Translations that have been approved; as a French Translation by the Doc­tours of Lovain. But in the French Collection before men­tion'd, I find, that A. D. 1620. Dec. 1. a debate arose in the Faculty at Lovain about it; and the Faculty decla­red that it by no means approved of it.

Another is of Rene Benoit; which was so far from being approved, that it was first condemned by the Fa­culty at Paris, and then sent to Rome to be condemned by the Pope; which was effectually done; and Grego­ry XIII. directed his Bull to the Faculty of Divinity in Paris, Nov. 3. A. D. 1575. Biblia supradicta omnine prohi­bemus, & ab Ecclesia Catholicae sub Anathemate rejicimus. wherein he doth expresly forbid this Translation, and reject it with an Ana­thema.

And yet this very Translation of Rene Benoit is one of those made by Catholicks and approved in the Roman Church; which J. W. refers me to. One of us two must needs be under a great Mistake, but to whom it belongs I leave the Reader to determin.

The sense of the Gallican Clergy in this matter doth fully appear by the Representation which they sent to A­lexander VII. about the Translation of the Missal into French. Which was done by Voisin a Doctour of the Fa­culty, [Page 158] and was published at Paris by the Permission of Cardinal de Retz Archbishop there, and had the Appro­bation of some Doctours of the Sorbon. The rest of the Bishops and Clergy highly resented this matter, and As­sembled together to consult about it, Nov. 29. 1660. where they proposed two things to be considered. 1. The matter of Right, whether such a Translation were to be permitted or not. 2. The matter of Fact, whether this were a good Translation or not. The debate was ad­journed to Dec. 3. and from thence to the 7th on which they came to a Resolution to suppress it. And a Circu­lar Letter was sent to all the Bishops to forbid the use of it under pain of Excommunication; and the King de­sired to interpose his Authority in it. Dec. 9. they agreed to send an account of the whole matter to the Pope in the name of the Gallican Clergy; wherein they declare their great dislike of it, as contrary to the Custom of the Church, and as pernicious to the Souls Illam omnim i [...]p [...]ob [...]m [...] tan­quan ab Eccl siae consuctudine alie­nam, nec niji cum ingenti anima­rum perni [...]ie conjunction. of Men. And in the Body of it, they say that they look on the Translations of Scrip­ture into vulgar Languages as the great occasion of the Northern Heresies; and quote Vincentius Lerinensis, saying that the Scripture is the Book of He­reticks. And after add, that they bad sent to the Pope their Condemnation of all Translations of Scripture and Divine Offices into the Vulgar Languages. This was sub­scribed by the General Assembly of the Clergy, Jan. 7. 1661.

The Pope sent a Brief in Answer, which was received Feb. 25. wherein he very Tragically complains that some Sons of Perdition in France had to the ruine of Souls, and in Contempt of the Churches Laws and Practice, arrived to that degree of madness as to translate the Roman Mis­sal [Page 159] into French. And he charges the doing of it not one­ly with Novelty, but Disobedience, Sedition, Schism, &c. and declares that he abhorred and detested it; and for ever damned, reprobated and forbad it, under pain of Excommunication; and requires all Persons to deliver up their Books to the several Ordinaries that they might be burnt.

I now desire J. W. to inform me whether we are bound to believe that in France Translations of Scripture into the vulgar Language are allowed and approved? I am really so unwilling to mistake, that I take the best care I can to be rightly informed. I have no design ei­ther to deceive others, or to be deceived my self; and therefore have not trusted to second-hand Evidence; but searched and considered the Authours themselves, whose Testimonies I rely upon. I am certain I have fallen in­to no wilfull mistake, but have truly and impartially stated things according to the clearest Evidence I could find; and therefore I think it some what hard to be told, that our Objections are grounded on Mistakes, and especially as to this matter about the Prohibition of reading Scripture in the Vulgar Language; for I hope I have made it appear not onely that there is such a Prohibition but that it is founded on the Authority of the Council of Trent.

And if it be so, then it serves my main design, viz. to prove that it went off from Catholick Tradition, for if there were so many Translations of old without the least prohibition, and there be since the Council of Trent, so severe a one, backed with the Pope's Authority, here must be a very great change in Tradition. For that is accounted pernicious and mischievous to the Souls of men, which before was accounted usefull and benefi­cial to them. If the Physicians in one Age should [Page 160] condemn the common Reading of Hippocrates and Gale [...] as destructive to the Health of mens bodies, which those of former Ages extremely commended, would not any one say, there was a great Change in the Opinions of Physicians, and that they did by no means hold to the Judgment of those before them? If the common Lawyers [...]hould now say Littleton's Te­nures is a Book very unfit to be read by young Lawyers, that it fills their heads with seditious and dangerous Principles, and therefore ought to be taken out of their hands; would not any one say, here is a wonderfull Change, for no such thing was ever apprehended be­fore, but the Book was thought very usefull and pro­per to instruct Students in some fundamental Points of the Law?

When Manna was rained from Heaven in the Wil­derness for 40. years, and for 30. of them every man gathered his own share and proportion, and ate of it as he saw cause; would it not have been thought a strange alteration among them, if after 30. years a sett of Physicians should have risen up and told the People ‘it was true, Manna was Angels food, but if they had not great care in the taking it, and used it promiscuously, it would turn them to Devils; or at least it would fill them with such distempers, as they would never be able to reach to Canaan? This might be pretended to be great Care and Tenderness of them, in these new Physicians; but on the other side, they would tell them, ‘they had done very well with their eating Manna for 30. years together; and there had been no such distempers among them, but such as humane nature is always subject to; that such an alteration might be of worse Consequence than their [Page 161] common use of Manna; for so it was at first appoin­ted and so it had continued, and they could not tell but their new Physicians might be worse to them than their old distempers; and they could never be­lieve that could be so hurtfull which God himself had appointed for their food.’

The former Discourse makes the Application need­less.

But after all, it is said: This is but a point of Dis­cipline and not of Faith; and in such the Church may change her Measures. To that I answer,

1. It is more than a point of Discipline, for it is changing the Rule of Faith with respect to the People. While the Scriptures were in the hands of the People, they resolved their Faith into the Word of God, as it was delivered to them and understood by them. But when that is taken out of their hands and they are bid to Trust to the Churches Testimony for mat­ters of Faith; they have a different Resolution of their Faith and a different Ground and Reason of believing. For they cannot ground their Faith upon a written Rule who are uncapable of understanding it.

2. It is no matter of Discipline to overthrow the design of publishing the Scripture for the universal Benefit of the Church of God. And this the Janse­nists have well proved in Defence of their Translati­on of the New Testament against the Prohibitions of it. ‘For, say they, the Prohibition of reading the Scripture under pain of Excommunication, is it self Dialogue 1. p. 26. 29. contrary to the Gospel and ought not to be obey'd. For Bread and nourishment is not more necessary [Page 162] to preserve the Life of the Body, than the Word of God is to uphold the Life of the Soul. That for men to speak of so much danger in reading the Scripture is to reflect very dishonourably on the Providence and Groodness of God; for it was by means of Trans [...]ations in Vulgar Languages that God's Word came to be kno [...] to the World, and the Gospel was at first published in those Tongues, which were most generally understood. And there­fore those do manifestly oppose the design and me­thod of Providence for advancing the Gospel, who decry Translations of Scripture, as pernicious to the Souls of Men. And farther, that such a pro­hibition, p. 63. is a Contempt of our Lord Jesus Christ and a design to suppress the Gospel; and a Con­tradiction to the Will and Command of God; A Contempt of the Scripture, which was intended to be understood by all, A Contempt both of Councils and Fathers, which looked on the Scripture as the best Judge of Controversies, and who advised all be­lievers to a continual reading of the Word of God.’

If after all this, the Council of Trent could so no­toriously err not onely against Scripture and Reason, but Tradition too in such a Matter of Concernment to the Souls of Men, as this is, it will be hardly possible to persuade Men, it could not as well err in any Point of Faith. And it renders the whole proceeding suspi­cious as to particular Points, when the Rule of Faith is so industriously kept out of the hands of the People. For those who follow their Instructions, are never a­shamed to produce their Credentials.

As to what J. W. saith in his Book concerning Ju­piter, Dialogues in Answer to T. G. Part. 4. &c. I had answered it so fully many years since, [Page 163] that I have Reason to expect a Reply to what I had there said in my own Vindication, before I can think it fit to trouble the World with needless Repetitions. And it were hard for me to be put to Answer again to the same things, when a Person will not take the pains to see whether he were not Answer'd already.


This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. This Phase I text is available for reuse, according to the terms of Creative Commons 0 1.0 Universal. The text can be copied, modified, distributed and performed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.