A DISCOURSE CONCERNING THE Basis and Original OF GOVERNMENT, WITH The Absolute and Indispensable. NECESSITY of it; Wherein the EXCELLENCY of MONARCHY Above any other Kind is Evidently Demonstrated. As it was Delivered by way of Charge to the GRAND-JURY, at a Quarter-Sessions of the PEACE held at Ipswich in the County of SUFFOLK.

By F. T. Esq One of His MAJESTY's Justices of the Peace for the said County.

[...]

Adag: Rabbin:

LONDON, Printed by W. G. for Robert Littlebury, and are to be Sold at [...]

THE Book-seller TO THE READER.

Courteous Reader,

THe Publication of this Discourse, hath been much Desired by seve­ral sober and judicious Persons; but such is the Modesty of the AUTHOR, that hitherto he hath had a Reluctancy thereunto, until now that by my Importunity I have prevailed with him to Expose it to Publick View for the Satisfaction of others, although not of himself.

R. L.

Imprimatur,

Tho. Cooke Reverend. in Christo Patri & Domino Dom. Gilberto Archiep. Cant. à Sacris Dom.

Errata.

Pag. 1. lin. 17. read [...] p. 2. l. 1. for [...], r. [...], p. 6. l. 15. for more r. better, p. 11. l. 20. r. [...] & [...] p. 18. l. 3. r. [...], p. 19. l. 28. r. [...] & [...]. p. 23. 1. 6. r. Bowels, p. 29. l. 16. r. Serpents do, p. 31. l. 27. r. [...]. p. 4. l. 26. r. [...]. p. 7. l. 7. r. [...]

Gentlemen of the Grand Inquest,

BEfore I enter upon the particular Heads of the Enquiry, I shall premise some­thing in General; lay down certain Theses and Positions, which, being rightly understood, will much fur­ther you in your Proceeding, and fa­cilitate the Work which lyes upon your hands; First, I shall shew you the Basis and Origi­nal of Government, and the absolute indispensable ne­cessity, with the Sacredness of it: Next, I shall shew you our Happiness in this Nation, that we have not only Government, but Monarchy, the best of Governments. To begin with the first thing propounded; Now Gent. That you may understand the Primitive Institution of Government, I shall clear it up to you thus; Man, you know, is a Congregative, a Sociable Creature [...] as it is well express'd by the learnedst of the Jews, Moses Ben Maimon in his Moreh Nebochim; Man (saith he) hath a Natural Propension, and Inclination to joyn himself unto Company; And herein he differs from other Creatures which stand not in need of such Society; And therefore when God made Man, lest he should be alone, he provided a Companion that was meet and fit for him, namely one of his own kind, a Woman; and this is a strong argument of the necessity of this bond of Society, even by a kind of natural In­stinct. Therefore 'tis, the Philosopher calls man [...] [Page 2] & [...], a peaceable and a sociable Creature, and tells us, that he which desires to be alone, must be [...] either a God or a Wild Beast: Me-thinks the Arabick words which signifie Man, doth very fitly express his Nature, [...] & [...] which are derived from [...] socium esse, associari. Now this Appetite of Association in Man, did, very probably, instigate and stir him up, not by any necessity of Cold, (as Vitruvius fondly dream'd;) nor from the admiration of Eloquence, (as Cicero imagined,) to excogitate and find out some way for the Conservation of his Species, and that was Order; which is Vinculum Vniversi, the bond of the World, without which it would drop in pieces as a Beesom un-bound: Now because Order could not consist without Government, which is the strong fortress of all Interests; therefore it came to pass that by the common consent of all, Soveraignty and Supreme Power was delegated, and devolved upon one or more that should personate the whole Community; and they should have power to make Lawes for the rewarding the good, and punishing the bad, which might be a means to secure them against all violence and oppression, [...], as Jamblichus a fa­mous Pythagorean Philosopher saith, for Men could not live safe without a Governour; All which is pointed at, though somewhat darkly, by Plato in his Dialogue of Po­licy or Civil Government, where he makes a graphical Description of the golden Age of the World under Saturn's Reign; who saith, That Men then being naked, [Page 3] lived abroad in the open Air, and were nourished with the fruits of the Earth which sprung up of their own accord without any labour of Tillage in great abun­dance; for the Hook and Sickle in Saturn's hand, sig­nified the plenty of that time, which they made him the Author of, as likewise the first Inventor of Agri­culture and Husbandry. The Famous Sulmonian Poet, (Ovid I mean) speaking of this Age, sings the same Note in these Verses,

—qui vi ndice nullo
Sponte sua sine lege fidem rectum (que) colebant,
Contenti (que) cibis nullo cogente creatis
Vivebant—

Then it was (to go on with the Relation) that Men had all things in common, they were mutual Benefactors one to another, and were free from all injury; they had as little mind, as cause, to do any wrong; for there was no in­justice in the World at that time, but Men did (as Seneca phrases it) aperto ostio vivere. Truth, Faith, Peace, Concord, Amity, and Righteousness carried the whole sway amongst men, and they were without Law, with­out Order, and without any Government, save only Theocraty; for God himself, by a singular Providence, did watch over them, and they were under his immediate Gubernation: Now some Poets say, that when Jupiter reigned, then began the Silver Age, being worse than the former, Justice having then taken hir flight from Earth to Heaven; Oppression, Fraud, Violence, Injustice, Sedition, Impiety, Prophaneness, (and what-Vice-not?) [Page 4] was practised cum licentiâ; and all things were counted lawful, save what was lawful: and so by degrees the World grew so bad, that it was called the Iron-age; a Description whereof Horace gives us in the Sixth Ode of his Seventh Book

Aetas parentum, pejor avis, tulit
Nos nequiores, mox daturos
Progeniem vitiosiorem—

Then it was in this Age, that Government began to be instituted, and Laws were made for the suppression of Vice and Reformation of Manners: Now it is probable, That this Theorem and notion of the golden Age, Poets and Ancient Philosophers received, by Tradition from the Hebrews; as some other opinions of their Religion: Or else, they might gather it out of the Prophet Daniel. There the first Empire of the World under the Babylo­nians, is represented under the form of a golden Image: but however it is, we must not think it had its Denomi­nation from the great plenty of Gold, which was in that time; No, Plato in his Cratylus tells us, That was not the reason, [...], saith he, It was not so, in its own Nature, but is to be taken Tropically or Metapho­rically; for thereby was signified the happy and excel­lent Condition of Men in that Age. And Hierocles upon Pythagoras his Verses, speaks to the same purpose in these words, [...] We call it the golden Age (saith he) because it was the best, and pure Age of Men, taking the difference of Manners from the property of Metals; so that, under this Mythology, it seems [Page 5] clear to me, that this Truth is covertly insinuated, that the State of Man in the first Age of the World, was a State of Innocency and Integrity: He was pure and righ­teous, not contaminated with the pollution and defile­ment of Vices, but was in favour and well accepted with God. The elegant and complete Volume of the Protoplast Adam, in which was bound up the whole Species of Man, was such an accurate correct Copy, and so exactly printed by the Supreme Being, (that [...], as Plato calls God, The Father and Architect of the World, and all things therein;) that there were no Er­rata to be found, no blots at all: But though this Book was put forth in so fair and legible a Character, and was flourished with many Capital Letters, yet the Worm of Sin did quickly get into it, and did so fret and corrode it, that the whole Impression was utterly defaced and spoiled: Man, I say, continued not long in his happy prosperous E­state; the Sun of his Glory was soon set, & he was benighted with a sad and disconsolate privation of his Native purity and perfection; he did not abide in honour, he was but [...] the Son of a Night: nay, the Psalmist saith [...] he did not lodge one Night in Honour, (for so the Em­phasis of the Hebrew Words imports) but he fell from his primitive righteousness and holiness into the profound Abysse of Sin and Misery, (I joyn both these together, because, for the most part, they are Twins of the same Womb, and, as it was with Jacob and Esau, the one catch­eth the other by the Heel;) Then it was that all manner of Villanies and Outrages were committed: Every man became a Wolf and Beast of Prey to another, and the Earth, as the Scripture-phrase is, was filled with Cruelty, [Page 6] Gen. 6. 11. or, as the Chaldee paraphrase hath it, [...] i. e. rapinis with pillage and robbery, [...] is the word in the Samaritan Version which signifies Oppression: And [...] in the Persian Translation, which is Violence; all different words, though much to the same sense: yea, it is said in another place, The wickedness of Man was great. And it seems he was so habituated in an evil Course, and in all manner of Debauchery, that he was grown obdurate and hardned, and so the Arabick Translation glosses it, when, instead of the Imagination of the thoughts of his heart, it hath this word [...] i. e. pervicacia eorum, their Stiff-neckedness and obdurateness in Sin. And now you will say it was high time some Course should be taken for the reducing the World to some better Order, which could not probably be effected any other way more than by Government; so that the Summe of all, in one Word, is; That the Corruption of manners was the generation of Government. So, Gentlemen, I have given you the best Accompt I can, (considering the un-beaten Path I tread in) of the Golden Age and the first Institution of Government: And now I shall proceed to the Second thing I propounded to speak of, which I shall endevour to open to you, with as much perspicuity and plainness as I can.

Aristotle in his Polit. saith, That the true reason of Civil Society or a Common-wealth, consisteth principally in the Com­munion of those that live well and virtuously; and there­fore it is necessary that there should be some Governour and Ruler to adaequate and square Mens Actions for them, according to rule, which Rule is the Law: [...] [Page 7] [...], as the aforesaid Jamblichus saith, Which Commands those things that are sit to be done, and contrarily forbids those things which ought by no means to be done; The Heathens had a Con­ceit that Phoroneus, whom they feigned to be the first Law-giver, was likewise the first-man [...] and [...], as Nonnus calls him; as if all that lived be­fore him had not been Men for want of Government and Laws. Government, why, 'tis the great Atlas, which supports the vast Fabrick of the World; you may as well imagine the Sun can be without a Principle of Light, as the World without Government and Order, [...], as Gregory Nazianzen hath it: Order is the Mother and Security of the Being of all things that have a Beeing; were it not for this, the whole Foundations of the Earth would be out of Course, and the world would be resolved into its first principles of a miserable [...] & [...] as the Scripture-Phrase is: It's Government which Organizes, as I may say, and animates the body of the World; draws it out of its rude and indigested Chaos; and quickens it into Action and Usefulness. It's the Sun of the Political World, without which the World would be as a dark Dungeon; This is that which refines Men and makes them sit for Converse, who otherwise would be like irregular Stones in a Building, which are full of roughness and corners, and so take up more room than they fill, and, till they be polish'd and made eeven, o­thers too cannot lye neer them; Government is that, which, Orpheus-like tunes men into a Common-wealth-frame as, he is fabled to do, when by the sweet Melody of his Harp he drew after him Wilde Beasts, Woods, and Moun­tains; [Page 8] that is, Men that were wilde and savage by Nature became tame and were charmed into obedience: What a Jewish Author saith of the Divine Law, in that Ancient Book called Zohar, which the Jews believe was writ long before our Saviour's Coming, is true too concerning Poli­tical Law; namely, Lex assumpto Corpore venit in mun­dum, that the Law assumed a Body when it came into the World; that is, it was assimilated and made like unto us, it is accommodated and fitted to our necessities and im­perfections; Government is that which sounds a retreat to the Sons of Rebellion, who otherwise by their despe­rate wickedness would every moment [...], Confront God Almighty. Your ranting Beliallists, they are absolute Antinomians, and wish that all Law and Govern­ment were banish'd out of the World, that they might sin more freely; this is that which puts a restraint upon them, in their wicked Courses, and causes them to walk more regularly: Laws you know have generally in them a double power, Directive and Coercive; the first sets down the duty, the second appoints the penalty for non-perfor­mance of the duty. Now 'tis the latter only which lewd and licentious men are affected with; the fear of punish­ment is that which scares them into some handsome out­ward Conformity, when-as they have no principle of In­genuity from within inclining them to it; The penalty I say, of the Law is that which hales them like a Bear unto the Stake, out of the broad way of destruction, wherein they were posting apace, into the narrow Street mentio­ned in the Acts of the Apostles, called Strait, I mean Goodness and Virtue; Government, 'tis the Pruning hook to lop off all the luxuriant excrescencies of Vice, and to [Page 9] pare away the superfluity of naughtiness: The Sons of Anak Men of Giant-like Lusts, the mighty Nimrods, that are grown so audacious and incorrigible in their wicked practices, that like a Titan-brood they even threaten Hea­ven it self with an over-daring impudence, and would, if it were in their power, dethrone God Almighty; were it not for these Manacles of Government and Law where­with these unruly persons are tyed, they would run up and down, and make havock of all good men: yea, these prodigies of Impiety, (Devils incarnate I may call them) would so rage, and so fearfully terrifie and haunt good men, that, were they not bound down by the strong Cords of the Law, there would be no place of safety for men in the world, no rest for the soles of their Feet, no more than there was for that winged Mercury, Noah's Dove I mean, the Emblem of Innocency, which was sent out by him to make a discovery of the drowned World, in the time of the Flood: I say, were it not for this Curb of Government; Murders, Adulteries, Incests, Rapes, Robberies, Perjuries, Witchcrafts, and Blasphemies; would ride in Triumph up and down in every Town of the Country, and thorough-out the Kingdome, so as it might be said of them as of Gad, Behold a Troop cometh: yea, all kind of Villanies, Outrages, and savage Cruelty, would overflow the Nation; and the face of the Earth would be covered with blood as it was once with water: Were it not for Government, I say, we should all be a Company of Ismaels, Wild-men; our hands would be against every man, and every mans hand against us; all the several Counties of the Kingdome would be but as so many Dens of Wild Beasts; Cruelty would insolently [Page 10] strut it up and down in every place, with her Writ of Privilege in her hand: No mans Life, Goods, or Wife, could be secured; What, I pray you, do you think would become of Propriety, the Guardian and Tutelar-Angel of Commerce and Traffick, were it not for this Enclosure? Would not all things lye wast and common? Would not every Mans Lands and Goods become the possession of the strongest? So that our Patrimony, and all that we enjoy in the World, if we sold it but for a Mess of Pottage, the price of Esau's Birth-right, we should hardly think we made an ill bargain; And, as St. Augustine saith well, Talle Jura Imperatorum, & quis au­det dicere, Mea est illa villa; aut, Meus est iste servus; aut, Domus haec mea est; Take away Government, and none dare say, These Lands are mine, this Servant is mine, or I have right to this house; And as for Women, what think you of them? If they be such as resolve to preserve in­violably the choise Jewel of their Chastity, who would rather choose to dye than live an Example of dishonour to the rest of their Sex; What rage and fury would beastly libidinous men exercise towards such, who, like Lightning would rend most, where they find most resistance, and would vent their angry passions upon them in as high a manner as Cruelty could invent; and at last bereave them of their Lives whom they could not bereave of their Ho­nour. The men of Gibeah will abuse the Levite's Wife, yea, and professedly too, abuse her to Death. And what do you think of Life it self, if there were no Go­vernment? Would it not be a Burthen to us, for to live? and, to be born, a Misfortune? Life certainly would be but an empty flat Parenthesis of time, a very Wilderness; [Page 11] we should be in continual fear of being assassmated, Men would be afraid to abide in their own houses for fear that ravenous savage Beasts, should come and become Cut­throats and Cannibals to them; much less durst they ven­ture abroad; or if they did, What pannick fears would seize upon them; every step they took, how would they tremble and quake, as if they trod upon Ice, or as if they were doomed to the old Tryal of Ordeel. Our Lives would but, as the Scripture phrase is, hang before us just as Dumaris his pointed Sword, which hung over his head, while he was at his Banquet, only by a single hair, so that there would be no comfort at all in ones Life. And indeed, I know not how there should: for, as the Spanish Proverb is, Que Quien teme la muerte, no goza la vida, He that fears Death, doth not enjoy his Life: And, in fine, to say no more, Were there no Government, there would necessarily ensue a general Confusion of all things: we should be as the Fishes of the Sea, the greater destroying the smaller. And, as it is said by that Rabbi in Pirke Avoth, [...], Vnless there were Magistracy, one would devour another alive. But I shall not need to dilate further upon this Subject; The rise and ground of Government, and likewise the necessity of it, you do, I suppose, fully understand. Blessed be God, we here in this Nation have Government, and that the best too, which is the next thing, Gentlemen, that I would make appear to you, as that which may be of use to you, [...], by way of preparing you, to the main and principal business I aim at: Now, that Monarchy which is the Establish'd Government among us, is the most Excel­lent Government; God, Nature, Art, and Experience, [Page 12] will sufficiently demonstrate. First, I say, God. He is the sole Monarch of all the World, he is the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, as the Scripture styles him. He ruleth in the Kingdom of Men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will. Monarchy was the Government which God made choice of to set up, among his people: First in Moses, then in the Judges, then in the Kings. In the several Changes of the Names of the Jewish Government, God still avoi­ded Polyarchy. When Captains, but one Moses in Tem­porals, one Aaron in Spirituals: when Judges, but one Othniel: when Priests, but one Eli: when Prophets, but one Samuel: and, when for their own ease they joyned others in Commission with them, they presently degenerated and became corrupt; for the Elders of Israel complained that they turned aside after Lucre, took Bribes, and perverted Judgment. Divine Plato saith, God doth [...]: Which he meant in this sense; because, The Geometrical proportion was more agreeable & suitable to Regal Pow­er, because this makes no Confusion of all-together, but giveth unto every one according to his desert and wor­thiness; whereas the other, viz. Arithmetical proportion, giveth equally unto all, according to number: and there­fore it was, that Lycurgus chased out of Lacedemon Arith­metical proportion, as a popular thing, turbulent and apt to make Commotions.

Secondly, Nature shews it: The Image of this Govern­ment is to be seen in Sensitive and Inanimate Creatures: there are in them [...], as the Philoso­pher calls them, some faint adumbrations and resemblances of this Polity; as for Example, There is but one Sun, in the Firmament. Among Birds, the Eagle hath the Su­premacy: [Page 13] and therefore, because of his Dominion and Soveraign'ty over other Birds, you will find in Scripture, Kings are compared with it; particularly the King of Babylon, is shadowed out under the similitude of a Great Eagle: Among Beasts, the Lyon is Lord Paramount; if you dive into the Sea, there you will see a King of Fishes; In the Common-wealth of the Bees, there is one that is the King: In the Microcosm of Man, you may observe the same thing; Several Members do their homage and ser­vice to one Body, the several Senses of the body are go­verned by one Mind; and one Reason moderates all the various and manifold Affections of the mind.

Thirdly, Art, which imitates Nature, doth affect this political frame: In a Family, you know, there is but one Master; in an Army, but one General; in a Ship, but one Governour: And so, One King amongst the people.

Last of all, Experience doth irrefutably evince the truth of this Assertion; Consult all Authors that are most skilful in Politicks, and they will all tell you that Monar­chy doth excel all other Governments; To begin with Homer, doth not he say [...]. Hear what Aristotle speaks, that Lynceus of all political Science, [...] Monarchy, saith he, is to be pre­ferred as the most Divine Government; and, to name no more, although I could heap up infinite testimonies in this kind; take, in the last place, that lofty Athenian Poet Euripides, doth not he sing to the same Tune? [...] Two Governours (saith he) cannot stand together in one Kingdome, for it would be an occasion of Sedition and Commotion: But why do I spend time in giving you proofs in this kind? when [Page 14] Holy Writ it self, doth so pregnantly conclude the same thing? You read Judg. 21 In those dayes there was no King in Israel, and what follows? Every one aid what was right in his own eyes. Observe the words, for they are very Em­phatical; It is not said, There was no Government in those dayes, but they wanted Monarchy the most excellent Government, and this was the cause of all disorder both in Church and State; for the words, without any streining, will bear that Construction, viz. Every one did what was right in his own eyes, [...] So the Arabick Translation renders it, that is, Quod libebat, Every man did what he list; Mary, (may some say) there was a brave time indeed; that was a great privilege, For a man to be sui Juris, to act without control; Alas! that which you call priviledg is a great and sad Judgment, as you may see by compa­ring this place with the 78 Psalm, where it is said, God gave them their own desires, speaking of the peo­ple of Israel; and what followed? In the 31 Verse, you shall find, that The Wrath of God came upon them and slew them; Such a Liberty as this, for a Man to have his full Swinge in a Licentious Course, is worse than bon­dage; for, the greatest freedom in the World is to be able to do nothing but what we should do: Again, the Tryal that hath been made of other Governments both abroad and at home, will abundantly commend the excellency of this above any other: for, Contraria juxta se posita magis eluc [...]s [...]unt, is a Rule in Logick, Contraries do best appear, when most directly opposed. Travel into the Roman Empire, and you will find it verified there: The Romans when they shook off their Government by Kings, History testifies, they had so many Changes, that in the space of 600 years, [Page 15] they tryed all forms and kinds of Government in the world: Of Two, by their Consuls▪ of Three, by their Trium­virate; of ten thousand, by their Tribunes: But when they found that the further off they departed from Mo­narchy they lost themselves, and were involved still in greater mischiefs and dissentions, at last they set up One pro unâ vice unoque anno. These were their Dictators, and in time they grew to be Perpetual: which Perpetuity begat Monarchy. But what need we travel so far, when we here in this Nation, have had such sad and woful expe­rience of the truth thereof, in our late miserable confused Anarchy? when that [...], as Plato calls the un­ruly Multitude, The many headed Hydra, did reign, shall I say, or rather rage? when, like the great Leviathan it played his pranks among us. Truly did, that Glorious Martyr of ever-blessed memory, K. Charles the first, pro­phesy concerning this Government, in that incompara­ble Treatise of his [...]. As it makes a shew, saith he, to the People to have more eyes to sorcsee, so they will find it hath more mouths too, which must be satisfied; and, at best, is rather a monstrosity than any thing of perfection be­yond that of right Monarchy; where Counsell may be in many as the Senses, but the supreme power can be but in one as the Head. But I shall not need to labour in such a plain thing, which carries its Evidence with it: You have heard, We have Monarchy the most excellent Go­vernment: Now, Gentlemen, give me leave to tell you, as a further degree of our happiness, That the best kind of Monarchy obtaineth in this Kingdome: Bear with me a little, if I be too long in these things, I shall be very short in the other part of the Charge touching your Enquiries; [Page 16] But I would fain speak something to this Point, because it may be of no little use to you and others, to establish them in an obediential frame of Spirit. For as it is in Re­ligious matters, so it holds in Political too; that one which is not well grounded in the Fundamentals of polity and government, will quickly fall away, and become a Re­bel to his King; as he that is not well rooted and instru­cted in the first Principles and grounds of Religion, will prove an Apostate, and fall away from the Truth which he prefessed: We have, I say, absolute Monarchy, and herein we differ from the Lacedemonian-Kings, who were subject to their Ephori, which had a power above them: No, Oursagrees with the Persian-Government; for, their King had plenary power in all things, not subject to be called to account by any person whatsoever: and so is ours, if you will believe Cambden, a famous Antiquary; who saith, That the King of England, supremam potestatem, & merum imperium habet, He hath supreme power and abso­lute Command in his Dominions; and So Bracton, a sage profound Lawyer, in ancient time, speaks to the same purpose, Omnis quidem sub Bege, & ipse sub nullo, sed tan­tum sub Deo: So that it is an unquestionable truth, that the King is subject to no over-ruling power of man, and that he is free from all humane Coercion and Restraint, I do the rather insist upon this; because of those sediti­ous jesuitical Principles, that were infused into the minds of the Credulous vulgar, in the times of Confusion, by some Ambitious Democratical, Antimonarchical men; namely, That, Constituens est prius Constituto, Rex singu­i [...] major, universis minor; that The King is greater than any particular single man, but less than the whole Body of men [Page 17] in a Nation. What an absurd Tenet this is, will easily ap­pear if it be duly examined; I would fain know of these men, whether the King is not bound as much to protect all his Subjects universally, as to protect any one singly; and are not all then bound no less universally than singly to honour the Kings Sacred Person, obey his Commands, and assist and defend him in all dangers? And another new devised State Quirk they had, to wit, That the King cannot be without the People, but the People may be without a King; and so conclude hence, The People are more excellent than the King. If there be any force in this way of arguing, by the same reason it will follow, that a Flock of Sheep are more Excellent than a Man, because the Shepherd is found out for the Sheep, and not the Sheep for the Shepherd; for if there were no Flocks of Sheep, there would be no need of a Shepherd. What a strange Inconsequence there is in this kind of Ar­gument you may easily discern. This makes as much to the purpose, as that Parson's argument, who would un­dertake to prove the Parish must pave the Church and not he, because it was written in the Prophet, Paveant illi, Ego non paveo; or, that no man ought to have the Sign of the King's-Head, Queens-Head, &c. hanging at his Dore, because the Scripture saith, There shall be no sign given but the Sign of the Prophet Jonas: We had need be careful, we be not infected with such Sectarian Prin­ciples, these are dangerous Sophisms that lead the way to Rebellion, and tend to the Alteration and Subversion of Government; therefore as an Antidote and Preserva­tive against such poysonous Positions as these, I shall pre­scribe you to take the wholsome Advice, which Solomon [Page 18] gives: Fear God, and Honour the King, and meddle not with them that are given to change: or as the Hebrew hath it [...] that is, with Rebels and Seditious persons, for the word in that language signifies both the former and latter.

But Gent. that I may come up closer to the business in hand, you have heard how necessary Government is: and the Excellency of Monarchy above any other kind, hath been fully demonstrated to you. Now you must know, as to the Exercise of this Government, that it is in the body Politick, as in the Natural body, every Member hath its proper Office and place assigned it; and all the Members do conspire together for the safety of the whole Body. You Gentlemen, are called here this day to bear a share in the Executing the Laws of this Government, in your Capacities; Now as Government cannot consist without Laws, so neither is Law of any validity or force without Execution, which is the life thereof: And here I desire to press this point of Execution, because I perceive there is a great defect in that particular: And I would not only speak to you Gentlemen, but to my self, and to you (pace quod fiat vestra) my noble and worthy Co-adjuta­tors, to whom the sacred Oracles of Justice are com­mitted, that we may be all stirred up, and quickned to the performing of the Duties of our several places; It is commonly said in reference to the Preaching of the Gospel, that Application is the Life of Doctrine. It is so in respect of the Law too; for all those great Privileges, and rich Commodities, which the Law is pregnant with, will all prove abortive without this. The Law, I say, hath no strength of it self to bring forth, unless the [Page 19] Magistrate obstetricates, and puts-to his helping hand by a diligent and serious Application. The Law without Ex­ecution is like a Cloud without Rain, which promises Rain but gives none; The Law, 'tis a deep Well of all things necessary for the support of our well Beeings, but the Magistrates are the Buckets, wherewith the people draw out the Waters of all their comfortable Enjoyments: As a Magistrate without Law, is a Workman without his Tools; so the Law without a Magistrate is but a dumb Idol. He it is that is [...] A Living Law. Ari­stotle saith, [...] As good no Law at all as not Executed: The whole body of the Law, without the Soul and Vital heat of Execution to animate and enliven it, is but as a Dead Carcass, and exposed to Contempt, therefore we must do by the Law, as we read Elisha did with the Child of the Shunamitish Woman; Holy Writ saith, that he lay upon the child, and put his mouth upon his mouth, and his eyes upon his eyes, and his hands, upon his hands, and he stretched himself upon the child, and the flesh of the Child waxed warm; So we must do by the Law, incumbere legi, stretch our selves, & lay out our utmost improved abilities upon it, pour into it the Aqua Vitae of Impartial Justice, which may Cause it to speak and revive, then move it up and down by a Spirit of activity, and by our nimble diligence, Magi­strates are styled Cods in Scripture, but if they do not use industry and assiduity in the Execution of the Law, these [...] will be but [...] meer Idol-Gods, and sig­nifie Nothing. The Law of it self is like Mephibosheth, lame, and cannot go, unless it leans upon the Staff of the [Page 20] Magistrates Authority. Or, it is like the Pool of Bethesda which we read of in the Gospel, where every diseased per­son that is infected with any ulcerous sore, or Contagion of Vice, may be washed from his filthiness and healed; but first the Angel must stir the water, I mean the Magi­strate, that is the Tutelar Angel of the Law, he must be active and stirring in putting of it in Execution, or else it will be of no efficacy. Although we stand up to the Chin in the waters of Privileges contained in the Law, have never so great a Confluence of them; yet we shall but Tantalize, and never be able to taste of the fruit thereof, unless the Magistrate plucks it for us, and hands it out to us. Gentlemen, by what I have said, you may perceive the necessity of the Laws Execution; and oh that you would be perswaded to Contribute towards its necessity! Oh that we would all in our several Spheres resolve to lay out our diligent endevours, for the effectu­al Carrying on of this laudable and excellent work. You may be sure it will quit Cost, for we shall have plentiful Comings in; it is that which you and we are called to this day, let us jointly bend our forces this way. It is repor­ted of the Serpent Amphisbena that it hath an head at ei­ther end, neither of which can move without the Con­sent of the other; and if they strive, they tear the body in pieces. How true this is, I know not; but I am sure, it is so with us, who are the Ministers of Justice in refe­rence to the Law; That can never be practicated and drawn out into use, unless we, that are Commissionated for the Keeping the Peace, and you Jury-men, and other subordinate Officers of the Court, in our several Orbs, do concurr and conspire for the promoting the ends there­of: [Page 21] If there should be any Contention among us, so as one should draw this way, another that way, there would be an Obstruction of the Streams of Justice, so as they would never run freely to our refreshment: and then that great Voluminous body of the Law, had as good be torn in pieces, for any benefit we shall have by it: It will be with us in this Case, as it was with those two Pitchers floating upon the water, which the States of the Vnited-Provinces, upon some difference between them and our Nation, gave for their Impress with this Motto, Si collidimur, frangimur, If we once fall a dashing, we shall all fall in pieces.

Gentlemen, You ought to lead the way in this business, you being the Primum Mobile in it; you are our Eyes and Ears, and the Countries Mouth, we know nothing but what you present; and the Country, whose Representa­tives you are, relye upon you for the discovery of their Grievances. If things amiss be not reformed, you may thank your selves for it; if you would have your Disea­ses Cured, discover them: You, I say, must lead the way, and not stand off to see who will begin first (as the fashion of some is); that is a piece of ill-placed good manners: Even as the Rats in the Fable, they all agreed it was fit the Cat should have a Bell about her Neck, that they might have warning of their Enemies Coming; but the Demur was, Who should put it on, and none would do that. The Ravish'd Virgin under the Law Deut. 22. was to Cry out: So your Office is to Enquire, and to pre­sent Offences; and if you conceal them, your Silence in this kind is a Crying-Sin. You are so many political Chi­rurgions, and your duty is to launce the publick Sores of [Page 22] the Country, and to search the depth of those wounds that the Corrupt manners of Licentious men, have made in the Body Politick, by the Probe of your Inquisition, and to lay them open; and therefore, me-thinks, Your Name is sitly adapted to your Employment, You being called The Grand Inquest: But, Gentlemen, I shall now deal more particularly with you, and give you some Directions that you may Steer your Course aright, in the Business you are Embarqued in.

In the first place, You must be Careful to present No­thing but what you know; for a Rumor or Hear-say, is not a ground sufficient for your Presentment. As God said in the Destroying of Sodom, so should ye say, I will go down and see. And again, You ought to Present all you know; you must avoid Partiality, and not be like the Badger that naturally halts on the one side, unless the Ground be rising to its advantage; neither Fear should drive you, nor Love draw you, so as to swerve from Truth and Right. You must deal Impartially with all Offenders; Spare not any, though never so much your Friends, and make never such large Proffers to Bribe your Judgment; Admit no Parley with them, but, as the Poets fable Vlysses to have stopp'd his Ears at the Enchan­ting Voyces of the Syrens; So be ye, as the Deaf Adder to such Charmers. Be not Consenting and Complying with any Offender, lest you bring Guilt upon your selves. It was the Speech of an Advocate to a Judge in Germany, who was very much aggravating the fault of a Murderer that had killed Six men: No, my Lord, (saith he) he hath killed but one; you are Guilty of the Blood of the other Five, because you let him escape upon the first Murder, Spare [Page 23] no Malefactor (I say); for Clemency in that kind will Commence per saltum, and take its Degree at last in Cruelty to the Innocent Person, according to that Italian Proverb, Perdonando troppo à chi falla, si fa ingiuria a chi non falla: By pardoning too much the Offender, there is an Injury offered them who offend not at all. Let not the Bows of your Compassion yearn towards any obstinate Offen­der; for there is no more pity to be taken of such a one, than to see a Goose go bare-foot. In this Case you must, [...] as Hi­erocles upon Pythagoras Golden Verses hath it, Be like the Physician, who is wont to Cure Malignant Ulcers with Sections and Caustick Medicaments. The Physicia [...] putridis non parcit carnibus. ‘—non parcit ut parcat, crudelis est ut misereatur.’ As St. Hierome saith. But, Gentlemen, I look upon you as Knowing and Conscientious Men, and such as are well acquainted with the serious Nature of your Employment, and so shall not need to Enlarge further upon this Mom­tory Subject: Therefore, I shall now come briefly to the particular matters of your Enquiry, which I shall rank under two Heads: Namely, offences against the Church, and Offences against the State.

First therefore, To begin with Offences against the Church; those that Concern Religion, because the Civil Society is subordinate to the Religious; the Religious Society, or the Church, being far more Excellent and Worthy than any Civil Society: for therefore it is, That Men live together in Order, and be Governed by Magi­strates [Page 24] and Laws, to the end they may the better perform Acts of Religion, [...] as Suidas saith, The first thing that is provided for by Law amongst all Men, is the Worship of God. And, Gent. You cannot be ignorant that Order is an Essential Ingredient in God's Worship; for, the Welfare and Happiness of the Church, as well as the State, Consists in Order. The Church is made up of many persons, and without Order they could not meet together, but they would justle one another, and there would [...]rise many Contentions. One would say, I am of Paul; another, I am of Apollo; a third, I am of Cephas, that is, of Peter; for it is Nomen Hebraeo-Syrum, and signifies so: Nay, it may be, some may be as fondly ridieulous in their Concertations, as those in Luther's time; when one said, I am of Martin; another, I am of Luther; whereas they did but divide Martin Luther, for they were both of his Religion. Cer­tainly, The Eucrasy and good Constitution of the Church, consists in a due Symmetry and Agreement of all the parts in reference to the whole. But Gentlemen, now that I am speaking of Order, lest there should be an Ataxy and Confusion in my Discourse, you are to know, there are two principal Pillars which bear up the Church, viz. Do­ctrine and Discipline; Doctrine, that, is as essential to the Well-Beeing of the Church, as the Foundation is to a Building. Discipline, that is the Cement of it, for it Cements the lively Stones of the Church, to wit, Chri­stians, for they are meant by that Allegorical Phrase in St. Peter, and joyns them close together. Order and Discipline are as the Ligaments in the Natural Body, they knit every Member fast to the Mystical Body of the [Page 25] Church, by one Uniform way of Worshipping God; therefore you have Uniformity Emphatically represented under the Notion of Bands in Zechary, because it tyes Christians fast together in Love; thereby we come to serve God with one consent, as it is phrased in Zephany 3. [...] is the Expression in Hebrew; that is, with one Shoulder, viz, jointly; 'Tis a Metaphor taken from Oxen, that draw equally in the same Waggon. And therefore the Syriack Version, is very significant, [...] are the words, i. e. pari jugo: This is a Blessed thing in­deed, and becoming the People of God, when they with one Mind and one Mouth Glorifie God. Munster in his Exposition upon that place in Levit. 19. Thou shalt not let thy Cattle gender with a divers kind; quotes a certain Jew, who saith, that God by this precept shews that he dis­likes [...] any heteregeneous Mixture amongst People in his Worship: But he would have [...] a perfect Vnity and Concord in Professors of the same Religion. For God, as he would not have the several Species of things to be Mingled and Confounded; so, neither would he have Men of the same Church, to be Schismatically divided. Doctrine, and Discipline, are like the Two Pillars which you read of in the first of Kings, Jachin and Boos, called so from their strength, for both Names signifie the same thing. These, I say, are the Chief Suppor­ters of the Church: But there are some Persons, That, were they as Powerful as Malignant, would (Sampson­like) pull down these Pillars, although they ruined them­selves by it. The Idolatrous papist, he, labours to un­dermine the Foundation, The Doctrine of the Church. The Schismatical Separatist, he pulls with all his might [Page 26] and main, at that of Order and Discipline: They are both dangerous Enemies to the Churche's Peace: These Foxes (as Luther speaks) are tyed together by the Tails, though by their Heads they seem to be contrary. But, as for the former of these, The Papist: Some, may haply say, He is no such great Enemy, he is not irreconcileable; for we have heard, That, there is no such great distance between Vs and Rome, but that we may meet together, shake hands, and become friends. For my part, I am not of that Faith: and it is not unknown to me, That, many Divines of great Fame for Learning, are of another opinion; A­mongst whom, hear what a Reverend Father of our Church, Bishop Hall, [...] saith, in his Treatise, Entituled, No Peace with Rome: The Church (saith he) is at once one, in respect of the Common Principles of Faith; and yet in respect of Consequences, and that rabble of opini­ons which they have raked together, so opposed, that, nullo Concordiae glutine aut Unitatis vinculo copulari possint, It cannot by any glue of Concord (as Cyprian saith) nor bond of Vnity be Conjoyned. And Dr. Worship upon the same subject expresseth himself thus; There is (saith he) such an Antipathy between a Protestant and a Papist, as is between the two Birds, the Siskin and the Muskin; which will sight eagerly alive, and, being dend, if you mixe their Blood, it will run apart, and dissociate. They are like the two Poles of Heaven (saith another) which stand for ever directly and diametrically apposite.

As for the second sort, The schismatical separatist, under which Sect may be comprehended Fifth-Monarchy­Mon, Anabaptists, Brownists, Familists, Quakers, or any others of the same stamp, by what Names or Titles [Page 27] soever they are notified and distinguished: These do all strongly oppose the Discipline of the Church; but now light soever these Men make of it, this is no smal Offence, to rend themselves from the rest of the Body by their Separation. Aquinas affirms, Schism to be the greatest of all Sins against our Neighbour, and that, not only in respect of the many Circumstances which attend it, but like wise in respect of its own Nature, because it is the most contrary to Charity, and the Love of our Neighbor, for it is, Contra Spirituale bonum multitudinis, Against the Spiritual good of a Multitude.

And, besides, this is an undoubted Truth, That, we can never gratifie the Divel so much by any thing as by our Dissentions; There is no Musick sounds so melodi­ously in his Ears, as that which is made up of Discord: he will tripudiate for Joy, and Dance at such Musick: And this also you may be confident of, viz. That subtle Old Serpent, the mischievous Agent of Darkness, doth no less easily than slily insinuate and winde him­self, into such persons, whose ignorant minds are obnubi­lated and darkned with Erronious Principles. Now, Separation is a fruitful Mother and Nurse of all Errours, and the Source and Sluce of all Heresies, and it hath this Evil evermore accompanying it, That the Ring-Leaders thereof, have a strong and vehement Appetite of propa­gating their Factious Tenets, and endevour after nothing more, than to have their Names and Opinions, serve to the same end as Zisco, when he dyed, appointed for his Skin: who being Leader of the Taborites, a Faction in Bohemia, commanded, That a Drum should be made there­with, (as Dubravius saith) that something of Zisco might [Page 28] still be heard to sound in the Ears of his Followers, and their Enemies.

But, Gentlemen, That you may the better know these Sectarian Persons when you meet them, give me leave a little to describe them to you. They are the very Antipodes of Authority, a giddy wild Generation of Men, that are impetuously carried out, and ravished, as it were, with every Novel-Opinion, and Narcissus-like, they fall in Love with their own Speculative Shadows, and court frigid Sceptical Controversies, instead of the [...] The Radical Fundamental Principles of Re­ligion. The old way of Serving God is loathsom to them, and they are only taken with new things in Religion, be­ing like unto Materiae prima, which always desires and seeks after New Forms.

They will Espouse nothing about the Worship of God that is Established by Authority, but would be left to their own wanton and lascivious Liberty, that they might embrace their own wild fantastick Inven­tions, and Enthusiastick delusions; They are Swelling Bladders, of restless Minds, and as Unstable as Water; tanquam Figura Sphaerica in Corpore plano, like a Spheri­cal Figure in a plain Body; Their several ridiculous and fond Conceits, they interpret, to be the Various Disco­veries, and Clear Manifestations of Truth, which spring from the light within them (as some of them call it); al­though, indeed, it is nothing else but an Ignis Ja [...]uus, which Lucifer, who aspired to be an Independent-Light, hath set up in their blind and ignorant minds, on purpose to lead them into the Cimmerian Darkness of a Myriad of pernicious Errors.

[Page 29] Gentlemen, by this Character I have given, you may come to know them; and knowing them, you can­not but look upon them, as great Disturbers of the Church's Peace; For, this is an Undeniable Truth, That, if once the Hedge of Ecclesiastical Constitu­tions be broken down in the Church, The Abaddon or Apollyon will quickly lay it waste; as appears by Psalm 80. v. 12. 13. why hast thou broken down her Hedges? And mark what follows, The Bore out of the Wood doth waste it, and the Wild Beast of the Field doth devour it. But, let such Hedge-breakers as these, know, that they shall not pass with impunity. For as it is writ in Eccles. 10. v. 8. Who so breaketh an Hedge, a Serpent shall bite him; that is, as some Expositors say, A sudden and unexpected punish­ment shall over-take them: which they gather from that Phrase of the Biting of the Serpent; for, a Serpent doth usually lurk in the hollow place of some Hedge, and when it is broken down, then they rush forth upon a Man una­wares, and fastning their venemous Teeth upon him, do give him his deadly wound. R. Solomon interprets the Biting of the Serpent to be, [...] that is, Death coming upon a Man immediately by the hand of God. What an Havock these Fanatical Hedg-breakers made, in the times of the Nefarious Usurping Regicide, you cannot but be sensible of. The Solemnity of God's Worship in a decent orderly manner they stigmatized with Supersti­tion, and they affected no other Service of God, but such as was tumultuarie Compositus; these men, though of ordinary Vocations, yet, were of extraordinary Cal­lings, for they would have the Brother-hood and Sister­hood believe, That they had an Especial Call of God to [Page 30] reform Abuses and Corruptions, (as they termed it) which were crept into the Worship of God, and there­fore out of a great deal of Zeal, abolished the Service of God, for the Upholding of Religion. Places that were set apart for God's Worship were so distastful to them, that to shew their Dislike shall I say, or rather their Abhorrency of them, by a strange Antistrophe, they turned them into Stables, as they did by the stateliest Structure for a Church that this Land afforded, namely, St. Pauls, which they made a Receptacle for their Horses; taking more delight, it seems, to behold the silthy Ordure of Beasts, than the Comely Order of God's Worship in the Beauty of Holiness, as it is phrased in Psalm 29. v. 2. or as the Aethiopick Translation renders it, [...] i. e. in Aula Sanct a ejus: So, That by this Beauty of Ho­liness is meant the place where God was worshipped, where God's Honour is said to dwell, yet upon this place, did they cast such foul Contempt as I have told you, to the great Reproach of Religion. It was such a piece of prophane Beastliness, and beastly Profaness, that I want terms to express it: But I am not ignorant that these men that are so opposite to the Discipline of our Church, and turn their backs upon the publick Ordinances do pretend tenderness of Conscience, that they cannot joyn with us, because there is such a Corrupt mixture of humane Inven­tions in the Worship of God.

As for that Common Plea of Conscience, (although I should be loth to Censure all Persons that use it) neither on the other hand am I so great a Latitudinarian in Chari­ty, that I can extend it so far, as to believe that all those who do separate themselves from Publick Worship, are [Page 31] led to it out of such Principles. Some there are that pre­tend to Scruples, and yet have not one Dram of Consci­ence: They that would delude and catch the credulous Vulgar, who only look to the superficial Appearances of things, whereas [...] is [...] they need no other Bait than the Name of Conscience; It is a Word of En­chantment, a kind of Legerdemain to couzen simple peo­ple with: but Intelligent persons are not caught so; they are like the Chiromancer, they will see the Hand to judg the Heart, and seem to say with him in Plautus, with a little difference, only Changing Manus into Aures: Ocu­latae nostrae sunt Aures, credunt quod vident. What ever fair Shews some Men make of Conscience, as if by their feigned Strictness and Purity of Life, they meant to be matriculated in Piety, yet if they be narrowly searched into, [...] as St. Chrysostome saith, They would be found to have a Wolve's heart, under a Sheep's Skin; Their Eyes for the most part are directed to the North-Star of their own proper Interest, and their Course is shap'd by the Compass of their own pri­vate ends; Like unto the Labourer who lifts up his Arms to Heaven, but strikes his Mattock into the Ground. Conscience oft times is the great Palladium of Sedition and Rebellion, and all wicked treasonable practises have been Gilded over with that specious plausible pretence. You remember, I doubt not, how it was with those hor­rible Miscreants, those [...] Men of Bloods, (as the Idiom of the Hebrew-Tongue is): who, when they had devested an Innocent and most Glorious King of His Roy­al Robes of Majesty and Power, and covered him with the Raggs of Contumely and Disgrace, at last, they [Page 32] brought him to the Block; But alas! why name I that Accursed thing, which speaks nothing but Blood and Wounds, and brings forth nought but [...] Instru­ments of Death? But name it I must, The Block, I say, where he was; He was: oh!—No marvel, Gent. I hesitate thus, for not my Tongue, no, nor if my Heart were turn'd to Tongues could it sufficiently express the Horrour of that dismal Spectacle:It being a very dark day, and the sua not appea­ring all day. The Sun, drew Clouds up to hide his Face, as not being able to behold so pitiful a sight, had you been there where this Bloody and Stupendious Tragedy was acted: What said I, Tra­gedy? (nay, [...] what he suffered did exceed any, the most lamentable and doleful Tragedy.) You might, I say, if you had been present, have plainly read the Original of Mens Sorrow, in the Copy of their Countenances; their Lips were hung with Black, as if their Tongues were to pronounce some Fu­neral; and the Universal Lamentation that was made for his departed Royal Presence, did loudly proclaim his present Royal departure: And yet these men shall I say, or rather Monsters of Men, were so impudent, as they publickly justified in the Face of Death and Judgment, so horrid and detestable a Crime, from the Dictates of their private Conscience, and their following of God, as they term'd it. O horrid Blasphemy! Who can hear this and not stand astonished? If Conscience should be held a sufficient Plea, it would open a Gap to all manner of Li­centiousness; for, why may not such a one that hath a plausible Knack of cheating the common sort of People with the fair Shew of Conscience, under the pretence thereof, make Claim to a Liberty for to run into Excess [Page 33] and Riot, and to commit all kind of Wickedness with greediness, and think they are very hardly dealt with, if they be denyed it; and therefore it's no great wonder, that in those times of Anarchical-Confusion, some men, who were intoxicated with Principles of Libertinisme, should make this Proposition, viz. That nothing might be Punished with Death but Murder; A thing, that I can ne­ver think of, without Horrour and Amazement, that Men should be so loose, and given over to such a repro­bate sense, as to Contend to have Iniquity established by a Law. It is confess'd by most Men that are the strongest Assertors of Liberty of Conscience, that men, which are guilty of Offences against the Second Table, should be restrained by Punishment; and, What satisfactory ra­tional Accompt can be given, why the same Care should not be taken, for the preventing the Breach of the First Table, which hath respect unto those Duties which we owe unto God? Hath not Conscience Influence upon both? Is not Gods Glory concerned in one as well as the other? Or are the things of God less precious than the things of Men?

But I know, it will be objected, That no Man hath Do­minion over the Conscience but God alone, & 'tis he only that exercises Soveraignity therein. But in Answer to this, I would fain know, Whether the Supreme Lord, hath not delegated power to some men, and invested them with Authority to Check and Control the Exorbitant Practises and Ex­pressions of such persons, who break out in things which manifestly tend to the dishonour of His Name, and the Peace of the Church: Or otherwise, all Ordinances, Order, and Government, would be trampled under [Page 34] foot, Religion would be Banished quite out of the Land, and the habitable World turned into an Hell: And if this were not so, how comes it to pass, that under the Law, the false Prophet, and the Brother that spake to the Peo­ple to turn them away from the Lord their God, were put to Death? Deut. 13. And was not the Blasphemer stoned to Death? Levit. 24. 14. God, you know, many times Plagued Judah, and at last carried it into Captivity, because of their tolerating of Errour, and Idolatry; and, if you consult Josephus the Jewish Historian, you will find that the toleration of divers Sects among them, was the Procatarctick Cause of their utter Overthrow.

But Gentlemen, You have another sort of Men that can find in their hearts to come to Church, but they are afraid lest they should be too curious in matters of God's Wor­ship, and should be thought to Complement with God Almighty, who is a Spirit, and looks for the heart in such performances: Crassam rusticitatem pro sanctitate habent, as those did, that St. Jerome complains of in his time, they think God is best served in a slovenly manner; they deal by God Almighty as they do by some of their fami­liar friends, whom they meet with as they are walking abroad, they do not stop their Course, to give them a formal Salutation by Crindging, Bowing, and putting off their Hats, but only give them a nod as they pass along, or haply may mutter out that trite and thredbare Com­plement of, Your Servant, in that Transitory posture; So, I say, you shall have them do with God; when they come into his House to Worship him, they think a care­less Dress or Address of themselves is best becoming, and so serve God hand over head, as I may say; or as you [Page 35] have it Lev. 26. 21 [...] at all Adventures, for the Word signifies so, as well as Contrary, which our Tran­slation renders it: But you shall have these men plead for themselves, and say, that External Devotion doth not suite with these Evangelical times. But were they tho­roughly acquainted with the Gospel, which they so much talk of and so little practise, they would find that this fond Conceit of theirs is sufficiently Confuted by our Sa­viours Practice. Did not he lift up his Eyes to Heaven when he prayed for Lazarus, and fell on his Face when he prayed in his Agony? St. Paul, as himself saith bowed his Knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ: But these men, when they come into God's House, the Place of His Sacred Presence, you shall have them pre­sently Clap on their Hats, and sit on their Breeches in Time of Prayer. What a shame is this? The very Hea­thens shewed more reverence in the Worshipping of their Idol Gods: for I read in Plutarch, That they adored the Deity that beareth the Name of Honour with the head bare; And how rude those Sedentary persons are, who cannot find in their hearts, to kneel or stand in time of Prayer, will sufficiently appear, if you consider, what you read in Levit. 19. 32. viz. Thou shalt rise up before the Hoarie-head; If such Honour is required to be done to Old Men, then sure it will follow, We should much more rise up before the Ancient of Dayes, when we are Worshipping of him▪ Religion would lose that Native Veneration that is due to it, if it were not Accompanied with outward decent ge­stures of the Body. But me-thinks, I may speak to these Men that are so irreverent and profane in their Carriage to God, in the words of the Prophet Malachy; offer it now [Page 36] unto thy Governour, will he be pleased with thee, or accept thy Person? No, I warrant you. I durst Appeal to these per­sons, Whether they would do the same in their Addresses to any of us that are in Commission of the Peace? And yet are they thus sawcy with God Almighty, who is the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, as if they were hail fellow well met with him. I speak the more vehemently concerning this Miscarriage, because such persons deserve a severe reproof, and if any such be here present, I shall only say this to them, which is a certain Truth, although it be pungens, and not ungens; viz. That the Covering of their Heads, is a Discovering of their Singularity and Folly, or rather their foolish Singularity.

But Gent. I shall now speak more particularly to the Ar­ticles you are to enquire of, though I shall not spend time in Enumerating of them all, for, I conceive that to be uunecessary, being ye hear them repeated every Sessions; and besides, you may find them almost in every Printed Justice of Peace Book; I shall only therefore name some of the most notorious and principal Offences.

First, If you know any person, Man or Woman, a­bove the Age of Sixteen years, not having some lawful Excuse, that do not come to Church or Chappel upon every Sunday, to hear Divine Service; you are to pre­sent the Offence, and the time how long they have ab­sented themselves. You ought to have an especial care to discover such, that a Mark may be set upon them as upon Cain, who is said, to goe out from the presence of the Lord, Gen. 4. 16. that is, he turned his Back upon the Church of God, the Place in which his Parents Worshipped God; called the Presence of the Lord, because God in [Page 37] an especial manner is present there. Such stragling Sheep as these, it is necessary the Law, as the Shepherd's Dog, should take hold of them and bite them, which may be a means to reduce them and gather them into one Sheep­fold.

You are to make Enquiry if any have blasphemed the Name of God by Swearing.

If any shall Profane the Sabbath-day, you are to pre­sent such: and there are two sorts of Persons that are guilty of this Offence; either such as use unnecessary la­bour, as Pedlers, Carriers, Hucksters, &c. Let such know, that if they neglect to sanctifie God on that Day, God will be sanctified upon them by his Justice. He that did but gather Sticks on the Sabbath-day, paid soundly for it; he heard of his fault, on both his Ears: and, because he rested not from his labour, on that day, was arrested by a multitude of Stones, which flew like Bees about him, and rounding him in the Ear, brought the sad mes­sage of Death to him.

Another sort of Men you have, that are so far from the Religious Observation of the Sabbath, that they make a sport of it, they devote themselves to all kind of Pleasure and Harmless Recreations, as they very man­nerly term Bowling, Dancing, Wrestling, I had almost said Cards and Dice too: They do indeed, call the Sab­bath a Delight; as the Phrase is in the Prophet Isaiah; but in the same sense the Jews take it, who spend the day in Mirth and Jollity, put on the richest and costliest Clothes they have, eat freely of all variety of Dainties, where­with their Tables are richly deck'd; and, in a word, use all things that make for the delight of the Body. So, [Page 38] these men they are wholly immers'd in Carnal Sensual Pleasures, and make no more use of that day, than the Leviathan doth of the Sea, only to take their pastime therein.

You shall present, &c.—But I shall say no more con­cerning Religion and matters of the Church, but shall come briefly to Offences against the State: And herein first, of those that are Committed against the King, and then of those Committed against the King's People.

First, As to the King, If any one have Conspired against the Life of the King's or Queens Majesty, or of their Eldest Son and Heir, the very Compassing and Ima­gination thereof is High Treason, if it can be proved by any Overt Act.

But all Matters of Treason are only Inquirable here, but not Punishable.

Secondly, If there be any that Revile the King, and speak Contemptuously of him, or use any Invectives a­gainst him or his Government, you are to present them: This is a greater Offence than People are aware of; St. Peter tells us, That such as despise Dominion, and speak evil of Dignities, are in an especial manner reserved to Judgment. We read in the Epistle of Jude, That Mi­chael the Archangel, when he Contended with the Divel, did not bring a railing Accusation against him, he did not revile him, no not in the heat of dispute: But some Men are so impudently vile as to revile the Gods, I mean Kings, whom Truth himself calls Gods; for Elohim in Scripture, which is Translated God, is an Equivocal Word, and is Competible both to Angels and Governours as well as God.

[Page 39] Next, As to those Offences which concern the King's People, they are of two sorts; either such as Concern their Life: or Secondly, such as Concern their Estate and Possessions.

First, As to Life, And the highest Offence against that is Petty Treason, which is, where one is killed unto whom the Offender did owe Obedience; as, The Ser­vant to the Master; The Wife to the Husband; The Clerk to the Prelate.

The second Degree, as to Life, is Murder and Homi­cide. The Spilling of Blood (Gent.) is an Offence of a Scarlet die, a Crying Sin, and you ought to take es­pecial Care of finding it out. There are a sort of Ruffi­ans, Roaring Blades, Gallants, they would Christen themselves, that make nothing of Stabbing and Killing for every petty Conceived Affront; it may be, for gi­ving the Lye; for taking the right Hand, or the Wall of them, or not pledging a Carouse or Health, which is to be drunk by a stated Measure and Proportion, (as those that make Profession of Skill in the Harmony of Bacchus know full well) but Novum genus hoc mensurae, ubi nullus est mensurae modus, as St. Basil saith, This is a new kind of Measure, where no Measure is kept: Such fiery hot Spirits as these, or, as they are commonly called, Sparks, ought to be quenched, lest the whole Country be set in a Combustion; Blood-shed with them, is held but the Cognizance of noble Resolution. The Clipping of the King's Coyne, is more odious and dangerous in their Accompt, than the Destroying of God's Image.

The Second Sort of Offences against the King's People, are such as Concern Mens Possessions and Estates. And [Page 40] here you are to Enquire of all Burglaries, Robberies, Cutting of Purses, and generally of all other Stealths. This Offence of Stealing is grown so Epidemical, that those Har­pies which use it, seem to plead Prescription for it, and are ready to Count it a lawful Calling. Luther tells of a Thief at Wittemberg▪ that had Continued his Stealing Sixty years, and being apprehended in the Fact, was asked by the Maior, How it went? He answered, As I drive, so it goeth. Some Persons have Contracted such an Habit by the frequent Repetition of Thievish Acts, that they ne­ver leave their Stealing till it hath brought them to the Gallows; whereas, did they meet with a Check at first, it might prevent their fatal Over-throw, although it were but some slight punishment that was Inflicted upon them; as that Conceited one was, that I have read of, which was after this manner. The Delinquent had a Coller of Iron clapp'd close about his Neck, which was riveled so fast with an Iron Pin, that it could not possibly be taken off, and a little Bell was hanging thereat, to the end that the ringing thereof, as often as he did stir or move, might give the Peo­ple warning to take heed of him.

You shall Enquire, &c.

[...]

Demosth. Orat. pro C [...]siph.
FINIS.

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