ƲIA DEVIA: THE BY-WAY: Mis-leading the weake and vn­stable into dangerous paths of Error, by colourable shewes of Apo­cryphall Scriptures, vnwritten Traditions, doubtfull Fathers, ambiguous Councells, and pretended Catholike Church.

Discouered By HVMFREY LYNDE, Knight.

Scriptura Regula credendi certissima tutissi­má (que) est. Bell de Verb. Dei 40 1 cap 2.

LONDON, Printed by Aug. M. for ROB. MIL­BOVRNE, and are to be sold at his Shop at the Grayhound in Pauls Churchyard. 1630.

TO THE IN­GENVOVS AND Moderat Romanists of this Kingdome; H. L. Wisheth the knowledge of the Safe way, that leadeth to eternall Happinesse.

CHristian is my name, and Ca­tholique is my Sirname: the one I chal­lenge from my Bap­tisme in Christs Church; the other from my pro­fession [Page] of All sauing Tru [...]th in Gods Word. If you question this my right or claime, I will produce my Euidence out of ancient and vn­doubted Records, and ioyne Issue with you vpon the marks of your owne Church;Antiquitie. Vniuersali­tie. Succession. and if I prooue not the Faith which I professe to bee Ancient, and Catholike, I will neither refuse the name, nor punishment due to Heresie.

As touching the Vi­sibilitie of our Church, [Page] I haue answered your Iesuites Challenge by the Title of Via Tuta, the Safe Way: wherein I haue appealed to the best learned of your owne side, both for the Antiquitie of our Reli­gion, and the Noueltie of your owne. If you require further satisfa­ction in this point, read & peruse the Articles of our Church, & tell me, without a preiudicate opinion, if our Church was not Ancient & Vi­sible long before Luthers [Page] dayes. Our 22. Bookes of Canonicall Scripture, were they not publi­shed and receiued in all ages before Luther? Our three Creeds, The Apostles, Nicene, Athanatius Creed. were they not anciently beleeued, and generally receiued in the Church before Luther? Our Liturgie, and Book of Common Prayer, was it not the same for substāce which was taught and profes­sed in the bosome of the Romane Church be­fore Luther? Our two Sacraments of Baptisme [Page] and the Lords Supper, were they not institu­ted by Christ; were they not published and re­ceiued in all ages before Luther? These are the Foundations of our Church, and all these in despight of malice it selfe, must bee acknow­ledged by our aduersa­ries, that they are taught by vs, and were vniuer­sally receiued long be­fore Luthers dayes. And as touching the particu­lar tenets of our Church (opposite to your Trent [Page] Creed,) our spirituall receiuing of Christ by faith (onely,) whereby wee are made truely and really partakers of Christs body crucified, is agreeable to all Christi­an Confessions, and taught by all antiquitie before Luther. Our pub­lique Communion of Priest with people, had Antiquitie and Vniuer­salitie in the best and first ages,Bel. de Mis­sa. lib. 2. ca. 9 & 10. by Bellarmines confession long before Luther. Our Prayer and Seruice in a knowne [Page] tongue, was publique­ly deliuered, and anci­ently taught (by Bellar­mines confession) long before Luther. Bell de verbo Dei lib. 2. cap. 16. Our Communion in both kinds, was instituted by Christ, and continu­ed in the Primitiue Churches (by Bellar­mines confession) long before Luther. Idem de Euch. lib. 4 cap. 24. Nay more, the Psalmes of Dauid, which vvee sing, (and some of you blas­phemously tearme Ge­neua Iigges) were in an­cient vse amongst the [Page] common people long before Luther. In Beth­lem, where Christ vvas borne, turne whither thou wilt (saith Hierome) the Husbandman holding his Plough, Hier. in 1. Epist 17. ad Marcel. continually singeth Alleluia: the Mower when hee sweateth (and is wea­rie) refresheth himselfe with Psalmes: the Gar­diner, as hee dresseth his Vine with his hooke, hath some piece of Dauid in his mouth. These (I say) are the chiefe principles of our Religion: these vvee holde vnder the [Page] Charter of the great King; and all these by the testimonies of our aduersaries themselues, were publikely known, and generally practi­sed long before Luthers dayes. Doe you looke for an outvvard Forme of a glorious and Visi­ble Church in obscure ages? Doe you looke for A Citie vpon a Hill in the darke night of errour and ignorance? I appeale to your ovvn consciences; to vvhat purpose were the pro­phecies [Page] of Christ and his Apostles, that the Church should flie into the wildernesse, and lie hid there? that Faith should not bee found on the earth: that the time will come, when they will not suffer wholsome doctrine, but shal be giuen to (Legends &) fables? that some should giue heed to the spirit of er­rour, and doctrine of De­uills? that after a thou­sand yeeres Sathan should be let loose, and deceiue the foure quarters of the earth? were all these things [Page] foretold, that it might bee fulfilled what was spoken, & are the thou­sand yeeres long since expired, and yet shall vve thinke that none of these prophesies are ac­complished?

Admit the man of Sinne bee not reuealed, yet the Mysterie of iniqui­tie began to vvorke in the Apostles time; and the Euangelist tells vs, the tares vvhich the thiefe fovved in the night, had almost choa­ked the good corne; and [Page] lest there might be some expectation of a great multitude, which shold assume the Title of an eminent and glorious Church, our Sauiour himselfe by way of pre­uention, cals his Church by the name of A little flocke, Luke. 12.32 as if a small num­ber were the ancient Character of the true Church. The malignāt Church hath many he­retikes and hypocrites, which indeed make a great noyse for a visible Church, when as those [Page] wicked persons (saith Au­sten) although they seeme to bee in the Church, August. de Bapt. lib. 6. cap. 3. yet they appertaine not to the true Church. That many are called, is the Church vi­sible: that few are cho­sen, is the Church inui­sible. Neither doe vvee hereby make two chur­ches, when we consider this Church after a two fold maner.Bellar. de Eccles. li. 3. cap. 15. In the Church something is beleeued, some thing is seene; we see that company of men which is the Church, but that this cōpany is the true Church, [Page] we do not see it, but beleeue it: this is Bellarmines confession, this is ours. Againe, looke back, and take a briefe Suruey of the Church in seuerall ages. It began with two in Paradise; there remai­ned in the flood but eight persons, & in that number there vvas an accursed Cham. In So­dome not ten persons, nay scarce three righte­ous to be found; there was but one Ioshua and Caleb, of many thou­sands that entred the [Page] land of Canaan: In the fiery trial, but three chil­dren, at the comming of Christ, there was Simeon and Anna, Ioseph, and Mary, Zacharie, and Eli­zabeth, and not many more knowne to bee sincere professours of Gods Trueth, in the Church of Hierusalem. In the Colledge of the Apostles, there were but twelue, and one was the sonne of perdition. In the time of persecution for three hundred yeres af­ter Christ, Eusebius tels [Page] vs,Euseb lib. 8 cap 2. the Church was ouer­whelmed to the ground, and the Pastors of the Chur­ches hid themselues heere & there. In the ages fol­lowing for 300 yeeres more, the Arrian heresie so infected the Church, that the ship of the Church was almost sunke, Hieron. ad Lucif. saith Hierome.) If therfore in the first and best ages the Church was much darkned and obscured, what splendor and visi­bility should we expect in these latter dayes, wherein the deuill is let [Page] loose, seeking to deceiue if it were possible the very E­lect themselues.

Let it suffice, as God himselfe first planted his church in Eden with two; so he hath watred it in the Garden of his Spouse, with the increase of many, best knowne vnto himselfe, and hath promised a continuall preseruation of it, where two or three are gathered together in his Name; and according to this Rule, (which our aduersaries cannot deny) vve haue [Page] at this day, a Church in Spaine, in Italie, in the East and West Indies, in euery place where the Inquisition reigneth, al­though the outward face of the Church doe not visibly appeare.

Your Church of Rome is too too visible in this Kingdome, although you haue not toleration of publike Exercise, nor is your Idol of the Masse set vp in the Temple, (which our good God, and gracious King for­bid) I speake not this in [Page] any sort to decline the visibility of our Church; for the Church is like the Moone, which hath often waxings & way­nings, and vvee know the Moone at full, and and the Moone at the waine, is one and the same Moone, although not alike conspicuous It was a Quaere in the dayes of Salomon, Who can finde a vertuous wo­man?August. de Tempore. Serm 217.but (saith Austen) in that hee said, who can find her, shewed the diffi­cultie, not the impossibitie [Page] of finding her: and this woman was the Church. He that made that que­stion, was the wisest a­mong men; and he that expoūded his meaning, knew well how to di­stinguish the right wo­man from the counter­fet; yet both agree in this, that the true Church was not easie to be dis­cerned Saint Iohn tels vs, this woman tooke her flight into the wildernesse, and there shee was fed. If the Apostle had fore­told the place as well as [Page] her flight, happily shee had beene pursued and found of many; but the place vvas a desart, ob­scure and vnfrequented, and therfore known to few; and for certain she was found of some, for otherwise shee had not bin fed. In vaine (I must confesse) had Christ cō ­maunded vs to tell the Church, if there had been no Church to heare, and his precept had bin need­lesse to bid vs heare the Church, if there had been no Church to speak; yet [Page] hee that warned vs to heare the Church, forwar­ned vs, that after his de­parture Grieuous wolues would enter into the church and speak peruerse things. Acts 20.29. He that taught his Dis­ciples to obserue to doe according to all the Scribes and Pharisies should teach thē, enters this caue at against their false glosses:Math. 23.3 Beware of the leauen of the Pharisies. He that said, Blindnes in part was hapned to Israel, told vs also, that the Church of Rome, if she [Page] did not continue in her goodnes,Rom. 11.22 shee should also be cut off. And it is obser­vable, the same Church of Ierusalem, which the Prophet Dauid called the Citie of God, Psal. 48.19. was ter­med an Harlot by the Prophet Isay in his time; and that Temple which Solomon termed a House of Prayer in his dayes,1 Kin. 8.20. was afterward by Christ called a den of theeues, Math. 21.14 the one shewed what the Church was, the other how it was altered, yet both agree, they were [Page] one & the same church.

The Christian church was neuer brought to a lower ebbe, then was the Iewish Synagogue at the coming of Christ, & yet a man at that time might haue seen Simeon and Zachary, Ioseph and Mary, Anna & Elizabeth, the true seruāts of Christ standing together with the Sadduces in the same Temple, which might wel be accounted as the house of Saints, in re­gard of the one; so a den of theeues in respect of [Page] the other. If therefore wee haue corrected the errours of the Romane church (as Christ whipt the theeues and money changers out of the Tē ­ple) we doe not hereby make a new Church, but renew that house of Prayer, and restore it to the ancient and true ser­uice of Christ. If we had left our Mother, when we first found her sick, shee might haue iustly taxed vs of disobediēce, and want of dutie to­wards her; but when [Page] the Priest saw her, and passed by, when the Le­uite looked on her, and forsook her, Luther and Caluin perform'd the of­fice of the good Samari­tan, they came neere vn­to her, and saw her, and tooke care to cure her wounded soule; and frō that time her children became Physicians, to heale, not parents to be­get a new Church. To heale a sore, to purge a sick and diseased body, is not to make a new body, but to renew it, [Page] and restore it to his for­mer health: let me giue you but one familiar example of your owne in this latter age. Saint Francis established the Order of Frāciscans, and they according to the meaning of their first Founders, did for a long time follow the Institu­tion of their first Orders: afterwards, when cer­taine errors and corrup­tions had crept in amōg them, they separated themselues frō the rest, and were called the Re­collects. [Page] Vpon this occa­sion a suit was cōmen­ced, to decide whether the Recollects, or the o­ther Franciscans did ad­here to the true orders of S. Frācis. After exami­nation, & deliberation had, the Recollects were found to adhere to the ancient Institutions of their Order, and there­vpon Iudgement was published on their be­halfe, and they were af­terwards called the Re­formed Franciscans. Such is the state of the Refor­med [Page] Churches at this day; the true Church was first planted and establi­shed by Christ and his Apostles; continued sound in Head & mem­bers for many ages: af­terwards whē error and superstition had crept in, and gotten the vpper hand, there were certain Recollects, which com­plained of the corrupti­ons and errours, which had sprūg vp in the Ro­man church; wherupon after mature deliberati­on had of the true do­ctrine [Page] of Christ and his Apostles, publication was made in the behalf of the Recollects, that they were found to ad­here to the ancient In­stitutions of Christ and his Apostles, and from and after that time they were called the Refor­med Churches.

Will you bring a Quo Warranto, and examine for what cause, and by what authority the Pro­testants haue reformed the errours of your Church? I will tell you [Page] in briefe. If for no other cause, yet for this alone, because you are taught to eate your God, Mariana. and kill your King, they might iustly seeke a reformati­on in doctrine and ma­ners: but the trueth is,1. Iohn 4.1. there were false Prophets gone out into the world; and for that cause Christ gaue his commission to try the spirits, whether they were of God; and accor­dingly they proceeded to examination of the doctrine of the Scrip­tures, by Fathers, & coū ­cels, [Page] and after publica­tion of witnesses, they receiued vvarranty frō the anciēt Bish. of Rome, and your owne famous Councell of Trent, the one commending that doctrine to the Christi­ans of their daies, which we now profess; the o­ther commanding a re­formation (in the Romā church) of such errours in faith & maners as we condemne. I will giue you instances in both.

Your worship of Ima­ges, (which you receiue [Page] as an article of faith) for feare of Idolatry we haue reformed, if you require warranty from the Ro­mane Church, Gregory Bishop of Rome pro­claimes it to the Christi­ans of his time:Greg lib. 9. Epist 9. Let the children of the Church bee called together & taught by the testimonies of holy scrip­tures, that nothing made with hands may bee wor­shipped. Your doctrine of Transubstantiation, which you haue decreed for an Article of Faith, we haue reformed; if [Page] you expect warrantie from the Roman church, Gelasius Bish. of Rome published and professed our doctrine flat cōtrary to the faith of Transubst In the Sacrament is cele­brated an image, Gelas cont. Eutych. & Nestor. or resem­blance of the body & bloud of Christ, and there ceaseth not to be the substance and nature of bread and wine. Your halfe Cōmunion we haue reformed; if you require warranty from the Roman Church, Iu­lius Bish. of Rome, spea­king of the deliuering [Page] to the people, a sop dipt in vvine, for the vvhole Communion, tels vs:De Conse­crat. Dist. cum omne. In Christs institution there is recited the deliuering of the bread by it selfe, & the cup by it selfe, lest inordinate and peruerse deuices wea­ken the soundnesse of our faith. These are funda­mental points, & agree­able to the tenets of our Church, and are warrā ­ted to vs by the ancient Bishops of Rome them­selues; and if the Popes doctrine be infallible in points of faith, (which [Page] you teach and professe) without doubt they may bee sufficient war­ranties for you to allow this Reformation.

I wil come neerer vn­to you, & descend from the ancient Bishops of Rome, to your late Coū ­cell of Trent, which in­tended & wished a Re­formation in faith and manners, euen of those things wch we haue re­formed: your Prayer & Seruice in an vnknowne tongue, we haue restored to the vnderstanding of [Page] the hearer; if you expect warrantie from your ovvne Church, your Councell of Trent, (al­though they reformed not this doctrine) yet for the better satisfactiō and instruction of the ignorant, lest (say they) the sheepe of Christ should thirst, Conc. Trid. Sess. 22. c. 8. & the children craue bread, and none should bee ready to giue it them, it was decreed, that the Priests & Pastors should frequently expound, and declare the mysterie (of that vn­knowne Seruice to the [Page] people.) Your supersti­tious ceremonies of ma­ny lights and candles, and your certaine num­ber of Masses, vve haue reformed. If you expect warranty frō your own Church,Quarundā verò Missa­rū et Can­delarū cer­tū numerū qui magis à superstitio­so cultu quā à verā Reli­gione inuē ­tus est, om­ninò ab Ec­clesia remo­ueant. I­dem cap. 9. your Councell of Trent confesseth, They were first inuented rather out of superstitious deuoti­on, then true religion; and therfore say they, let thē be altogether remooued frō the Church. Your Indul­gences, (which are made an article of Faith) we haue reformed; if you [Page] expect warranty from your ovvn Church, you may answere with the Fathers of the Trent Coūcell:Quastorum abusus vt corū emen­dationi spes nulla relicta videatur, &c. The Popes Offi­cers in collecting money for Indulgences, gaue a scan­dall to all faithfull Christi­ans, which might seeme to be without hope of Refor­mation; and therfore we haue reformed thē.Ab Ecclesiis verò Musi­cas eas, vbi siue organo, siue cantus lascivū, aut impurum aliquid miscetur— Your lasciuious & wanton songs which are mingled with your Church Musicke, vve haue reformed; if you expect warrantie from your own church, your [Page] owne Coūcel complai­ned of it, and wished it might be reformed, and they giue the reason for it:Vt Domus Dei verè domus ora­tionis esse videatur. Idem ibid. That the House of God may appeare to bee the house of prayer. Your Su­perstition, your Idolatrie, your Couetousness, which you confesse to haue crept into the Masse, by the error of time, and wic­kednesse of men, vve haue reformed; if you require warrantie from your own church,Ordinarii locorū Epis­copi ea om­nia prohibe­re atque è medio tolle­re sedulò curent ac teneantur, quae vel a­uaritia i­dolorū ser­uitus, vel superstitio induxit. Idē Can. 9. your Coū ­cell decreed, That the Ordinary should bee very [Page] carefull to remoue all those things, which either coue­tousnes, or worship of idols, or superstition had brought in. Lastly, your priuate Masse we haue refor­med, and restored to the Communion of Priest and people; if you expect warrantie from your own Church, Anacletus, and Calixtus, (both Bi­shops of Rome) decreed; that after Consecration all present should cōmunicate, Dist 1. E­piscopus &. 2. Peracta. or else bee thrust out of the Church. And your late Councell of Trent, al­though [Page] they reformed not this doctrine, yet Optaret quidē sacrosancta Synodus; The Coūcell could wish, that the people might cōmunicat with the Priest; and there they giue the reason for it: Because it would be more fruitful and more profitable. Sess. 22. c. 6.

If therefore we haue changed your Sacrifice into a Sacrament; your carnal and grosse eating of Christ, into a spiritu­all receiuing by faith; your half Communion into the whole Sacra­ment [Page] of the body and blood of Christ; your priuate Masse, into the publike communion of Priest and people: your adoration of Images, in­to the true worship of God in spirit and truth; your prayer and seruice in an vnknown tongue, into the vulgar lāguage to be vnderstood of the cōmō people; your lasci­uious & wanton songs, into Dauids Psalmes: we haue don nothing here­in, but what the Apo­stles, what the holy Fa­thers, [Page] what the ancient Bish. of Rome taught in the first & best ages, and what your grand Coū ­cell of Trent intended, and wished to be refor­med in this latter age. Nay more, since your Councell hath made se­uerall Decrees for Refor­mation; The Coun­cel of Trent began An 1545 and ended Ann. 1563. Bell. Chro. pa. 121. 123. since they can neither plead vvant of Authority, nor vvant of time, during the liues of [...]ight Popes, and eighteen yeres continuance, why they did not proceed, & put in execution those [Page] Decrees. I hope wee shal deserue the greater thāks from your Popes and Cardinalls, for re­ctifying those abuses which they themselues condemned, and from their owne Decrees and faire pretēces, may iust­ly arrogate to our selues that honorable Title of Reformed Churches.

Giue me leaue there­fore by way of counter-challenge to your Iesuit, to vse the words of so­bernes & truth: Where was your Church & Trent [Page] doctrine before Luther? for I call God and his heauenly Angels to wit­nes, that notwithstan­ding you obtrude the invisibility of our church as a stumbling blocke to the ignorant, not­withstāding your great brags of an outward face of an eminent, and glorious Romane Church; yet your Trent faith and doctrine vvas far frō the knovvledge of Christ & his Apostles: nay more, if any Iesuite, or all the Iesuites aliue, [Page] can proue your Roman Faith had Antiquity, Vni­uersalitie, and Succession, in al ages, and that your Trent Articles were plain­ly, commonly and con­tinually taught, & recei­ued de Fide, as Articles of Faith, before Luther, let all the Anathema's in your Trent Councel fall vpon my head. And as touching the great noise and rumors of your Ca­tholike Church, if you wil consider and vveigh it vvith wisdom and moderation, you shall find, [Page] it wholly depends vpon tvvo doubtfull and vn­certain cōclusions (viz.) The Infallibilitie of the Pope, and the Intention of the Priest. These are but tvvo slender threds to vphold the Vniuersall faith of all Christians; and therfore blame not vs, if such things seeme harsh and vntunable in our eares, that many millions of soules shold depend vpon the Infalli­bility of one man; & that man by your own sup­posall, may draw vvith [Page] him innumerable soules to hell. That man vvho hath the name and na­ture of Antichrist in his person; in the one as he is against Christ and his doctrine; in the other as he claimes to be Christs Vicar, & sit in his stead, (for the very name of An­tichrist imports both.Anti-Christ signifies, Against Christ, and to be in the place of Christ.) That man vpon vvhose forehead, (by the testi­monies of learned Au­thors) the vvord Myste­rie, Dr. Iames in his Epist. Dedicatory of the Cor­ruption of the Fathers &c. the very mark of the Beast was sometimes writtē. That man who [Page] is pointed at by the A­postle, [...]. to be that Anti­christ, by his habitation seated vpon seuen hills. Reuel. 17. That man, who hath the character of the man of sin, 2. Thess. 2.4 which aduāceth him­selfe aboue all that are cal­led Gods; I haue said you are Gods Psal. 82.6. (viz) the Kings and Princes of the earth. That man, who hath published the doctrine of Deuils, 1. Tim 4. by forbidding of meats, and Marriage vnto Priestes. Lastly, that man whose Infallibility, Conc. Flor. in Decret. Eugenij. whose Succession, whose Orders, whose Baptisme, [Page] and Christianitie it selfe, depends vpon the Inten­tion of a silly Priest,Bell de Iu­stif. li 3. [...].8. of whose Intention none can be assured by your owne confessions.

It is not the great soūd of a visible Church that must outface the truth; (for the emptiest vessels make the greatest soūd) neither is it the name of Catholike, (which you wholly appropriate to your selues) sufficient to proue your Church Ca­tholike: nay more, your pretences of Scriptures, [Page] of Traditions, of Fathers, of Councels, of an Infalli­ble Church, are but figge-leaues, to couer the na­kednesse of your nevv borne faith: for it shall appeare, (by this small Treatise) that your chie­fest scriptures, on which you build your Trent doctrine, are Apocryphal; your Traditions, which you haue equalled to the Scriptures, are Apo­staticall: your Fathers, which you assume for Interpreters of the Scrip­tures, are spurious and [Page] counterfet: your Coun­cels, which depend vpō the Infallibilitie of the Popes iudgment, are er­ronious & doubtful; and your pretēded Catholike Church, which is made the onely rule of Faith, is neither a whole, nor yet a sound member of the Catholike and Vni­uersall Body. This way therefore which you take, is a cloke & colour to darken truth, by out­ward shewes, and spe­cious pretences, and therefore Via Deuia, a [Page] vvandring and By-way.

Neither is it your bit­ternesse and inuectiues against a Lay man, shall make me silent in Gods cause; for I say with Mo­ses, Num. 12.29 Would God al the Lords people could prophecie: and I hope there will neuer be wanting a Mildab, & a Medab, to assist Moses and Aaron, that may bee able to vindicate Gods Honor and Truth, & ease our painful Pastors and Ministers, which most laboriously performe the work of an Euangelist, and [Page] conuert soules by prea­ching, which yours per­uert by Controuersies of Disputations: I hope, I say, there wilbe alwaies some, who wil publish to the shame of your Romish Pastors, the pal­pable ignorance of the Laitie, who with an implicite faith, & inuol­ued obedience, resigne vp their sight and senses to blind guides. Let the Trueth of God and his Church flourish, & no rayling accusation of an Aduersary shall deterre [Page] mee from my seruice to his cause. In the meane time I will appeale to your own consciences, whether it bee Catho­like doctrine, or sauour of Christian Charitie, wch your Iesuites teach, (viz. Haereticos non magis audiendos esse etiamsi vera et sa­cris literis cōsentanea dicant aut doceant quā Diobolum. Mald. in Math. 16.6) That the Reformed Churches are no more to be heard, then the deuill him­selfe, although they speake trueth, and agreeable to the Scriptures; nay more, I speak it with shame and griefe,Discept. T [...]ol. Sect. 2. the Pope at this day allowes the Talmud of the Iewes, and yet [Page] prohibites the Books of Protestants.

Giue mee leaue there­fore to speake to you, as somtime S. Austen spake to the Donatists: Aug. contr. Pet [...]l lib. 3. cap. 59. If you will be wise, & vnderstand the trueth, it is well; if o­therwise, it shall not grieue mee, that I haue taken this paines for you for though your hearts returne not to the peace of the Church, yet my peace shall returne to mee in the Church. The cause is Gods, the la­bour is mine; if you wil reade it impartially, and [Page] can shew me any error clearely, faithfully, and moderately, I wil make a work of Retractations, and professe openly with righteous Iob: Iob 31.35, 36. O that mine aduersary would write a Booke against mee, I would take it vpon my shoulder, and bind it as a Crowne vnto me.

H. L.

The Contents.

Sect. 1.
THe safest and onely in­fallible way to finde out the true Church, is by the Scriptures. Pag. 1.
Sect. 2.
Our Aduersaries pretences, from the obscuritie of Scrip­tures, and inconueniences of the Lay peoples reading them, an­swered. p. 16.
Sect. 3.
The Scripture, according to the Iudgement of the ancient Fathers, is the sole Iudge of Controuersies, and Interpreter of it selfe. p. 43.
[Page] Sect. 4.
Our Aduersaries, howsoeuer they pretend by taking an oath, to make the Fathers Interpre­ters of the Scriptures, yet indeed they make themselues sole Inter­preters of Scriptures and Fa­thers. p. 58
Sect. 5.
The intire Canon of Scrip­tures which wee professe (with­out the Apocryphall additions) is confirmed by pregnant testi­monies in all ages, and most of them acknowledged by the Ro­manists themselues. p. 86
Sect. 6.
Our Aduersaries pretences from the Authorities of Fa­thers, and Councels, to proue the Apocryphall Bookes Canonicall, answered. p. 122
[Page] Sect. 7.
The Romanists in poynt of Traditions, contradict the truth and themselues: grounding most of their erronious. Do­ctrine vpon vnwritten Tradi­tions, and yet frequently alledge the written Word for them. p. 144
Sect. 8.
The most generall pretended Traditions of the Romane Church, were vtterly vnknown to the Greeke Church, and want Antiquitie, Vniuersalitie, and Succession, the proper markes of true Traditions in the Roman Church. p. 167
Sect. 9.
The Scriptures are a cer­taine, safe and euident direction to the right way of Saluation, and consequently to ground [Page] Faith vpon vnwritten Tradi­tions, is an obscure, vncertaine and dangerous By way. p. 245
Sect. 10.
Our Aduersaries make great boast of the Testimonies of the ancient Fathers in generall, yet when they come to fifting par­ticular poynts, either by secret evasion they decline them, or openly reiect them. p. 280
Sect. 11.
The most substantiall poynts of Romaine Faith and Do­ctrine, as they are now taught and receiued in the Church of Rome, were neuer taught by the Primitiue Church, nor re­ceiued by the ancient Fathers. p. 307
Sect. 12.
Saint Augustine in parti­cular is much disparaged by [Page] the Romanists; and for in­stance in many seuerall poynts of moment, wherein hee profes­sedly concurreth with vs, is expressely reiected by them. p. 335
Sect. 13.
Saint Gregorie, pretended to be the Founder of the Ro­mane Religion in England, by sending Austen the Monke, for conversion of this nation, in his vndoubted writings, direct­ly opposeth the Romish Faith in the maine poynts thereof. p. 347
Sect. 14.
Councels which are so highly extold, and opposed against vs, were neither called by lawfull authoritie, or to the right ends, as is confessed by the ingenuous Romanists. p. 370
[Page] Sect. 15.
Councells, which our Aduer­saries pretend, as a chiefe Bul­wark of their faith, giue no sup­port at all to the Romish Religi­on, as it is proued by particular obiections made against seuerall Councels in all ages, by the Ro­manists themselues. p. 386
Sect. 16.
The Councell of Trent, which is the maine Pillar, and last re­solution of the Roman faith, is of small or no credit at all, because it was neither lawfully called, nor free, nor generall, nor gene­rally receiued by the Romanists themselues. p. 420
Sect. 17.
In the Roman Church, which our aduersaries so highly extoll aboue the Scriptures, there is neither safetie nor certaintie, [Page] whether they vnderstand the Essentiall, or Representatiue, or the Virtuall, or the Consistoriall Church. p. 452
Sect. 18.
The most common Plea of the Romanists drawne from the In­fallibilitie, Authoritie, and Ti­tle of the Catholike Church, is proued to bee false, vaine, and friuolous. p. 468
Sect. 19.
The Church which our Ad­uersaries so much magnifie a­mong themselues, is finally resol­ued into the Pope, whom they make both the Husband and the Spouse, the Head and the Body of the Church. p. 496
Sect. 20.
The Church is finally resol­ued into the Pope, who wants both Personall and Doctrinall [Page] succession, as appeares by seue­rall instances, and exceptions, both in matters of Fact, and matters of Faith. p. 513
Sect. 21.
The infallibilitie of the Popes Iudgement, which is made the Rule of Faith, to determine all Controuersies, is not yet deter­mined by the learned Roma­nistes amongst themselues. p. 545
Sect. 22.
The Church vpon which the learned Romanists ground their Faith, is no other then the Pope: and the Church vpon which the vnlearned Romanists doe re­lie, is no other then their Parish Priest. p. 572
Sect. 23.
Eminent and perpetuall Vi­sibilitie, is no certaine Note of [Page] the true Church, but the con­trary rather, as it is prooued by instances from Adam to Christ. p. 592
Sect 24.
The Latencie and obscuritie of the true Church is p [...]ooued by pregnant testimonies of such who complained of corruptions and abuses, and withall decreed a Reformation in all ages, from the time of Christ and his A­postles, to the dayes of Luther. p. 610
Sect. 25.
The aforenamed corrupti­ons, and most remarkable de­clination of the Church of Rome in the later ages, was foretold by Christ and his Apostles in the first Age. p. 666
[Page] Sect. 26.
The Conclusion of this Trea­tise, shewing in sundrie parti­culars, the certaintie and safetie of the Protestant, and the vn­certaintie and danger of the Romish Way. p. 675


SECT. I. The safest, and onely infallible way to finde out the true Church, is by the Scripture.

WHen the Dona­tists, in the most flourishing times of Christian Re­ligion, arrogantly and pre­sumptuously appropriated the Catholique and Vni­uersall [Page 2] Church, to their hae­reticall and particular facti­on: St. Austen encountring them,Quaestio est vbi sit Ec­clesia: quid ergo facturi sumus? an inverbis no­stris eā qua situri, an in verbis capi­tis sui Dom. nostri Iesu Christi? Pu­to quod in illius potius verbis eam quaerere de­bemus, quia veritas est, & nouit corpus suū. Aug. de v­nit. Eccles. cap. 2. states the poynt of Controuersie in this ma­ner. The question is where the Church should bee, what then shall we doe? shall wee seeke it in our owne wordes, or in the words of our Lord Iesus? In my iudgement we ought rather to seeke the Church in his owne words, for that he is the truth, and knoweth his owne body.

You haue heard the que­stion propounded, and an­swered by the Oracle of that age. Such is the difference at this day, betwixt the Church of Rome and vs; and I heartily wish, wee might ioine issue with them vpon the like tearmes, and [Page 3] both agree with one vnani­mous consent to seeke the Church of God in the word of God; then should wee be gathered, as sheep to one sheep-fold, and the weake in faith should be receiued, not to doubtfull disputations, but to the reading of the Scriptures: and they that now question the Visibilitie of our Church before Lu­ther, would first examine the infallibilitie of their owne, by the Touchstone of the Gospell; and the rather, be­cause it is agreed on both sides, that whatsoeuer Church professeth, that faith and doctrine, which Christ and his Apostles taught in the first age, the same Church and doctrine [Page 4] hath continued more or lesse visible in all ages. But to returne to the Donatists.

Cant. 1.7.When Christ in the Can­ticles, demanded of his Spouse where she rested Meridie, at Noone-day, the Donatists concluded Christs question with their owne answere, that the Church did rest Meridie, and that was in the South: & from this ground, excluded all other Chur­ches, but their owne in the South of Africk: The Dona­tists claime, was seemingly deriued from the authoritie of the Scriptures (for Dona­tus, and Austen, heretique and Catholique, both vrge the Scriptures;) but obserue the difference; Saint Austen puts the whole issue of his [Page 5] cause vpon the Scripture: the Donatists claimed their doctrine by the publique voyces of the Africans, they assumed to themselues the title of the Catholike Church: they magnified the Councels of their Bishops; they glori­ed in their frequent, though fained miracles: these were the principall grounds of their Church,Remotis er­go omnibus talibus, Ec­clesiam suā demonstrant si possunt, non in ser­monibus & rumoribus Afrorum, nō in Conciliis Episcoporū, nō in literis quorum li­bet disputa­torum, non in signis & prodigiis fallacibus, quia etiam contra ista verbo Dom. praeparati et cautired diti sumus sed in prae­scripto Le­gis, in Pro­phetarum praedictis, in Psalmorum cantibus, in ipsius Pasto­ris vocibus, in Euange­listarū prae­dicationibus et laboribus (hoc est) in omnibus Ca­nonicis San­ctorū libro­rum autho­ritatibus. Aug. de v­nit. Eccles. cap. 16. and vpon these they challenged that great Champion: but heare what answere hee makes them. Let the Donatists, if they can, shew their Church, not in rumors and speeches of the men of Africa, not in the Coun­cels of their Bishops, not in dis­courses of any Writers whatso­euer, not in signes and miracles that may bee forged, for we are [Page 6] forewarned by Gods word, and therefore fore-armed against those things: but in the pre­script of the Law, in the predi­ction of the Prophets, in the verses of the Psalmes, in the voices of the Shepheard him­selfe, in the preaching and workes of the Euangelistes, that is in all the Canonicall au­thorities of the sacred Scrip­tures.

If Saint Austen had been liuing in these dayes, either he must haue retracted this Protestant doctrine, or hee would haue beene reputed for an heretique; for all these marks, which were an­ciently maintained by the Donatists, are proclaimed by our aduersaries to be vi­sible characters of the true [Page 7] Church: neither did this learned father require more of the Donatist, then the Catholiques of those times were willing to performe on their parts; and therfore hee bindes himselfe to the same conditions which hee required of his aduersaries, and withall renders the rea­son of his demand.Nec nos proptareà dicimus no­bis credere oportere ad in Ecclesia Christi sumꝰ quia ipsam quā tenemꝰ, commenda­uit Mileui­tanus Opta­tus, vel Me­diolanensis Ambrosius, vel alii in­numerabilis nostra com­munionis E­piscopi, aut quia nostro­rum Colle­garum Con­ciliis praedi­cata est aut quia per to­tum orbem in locis san­ctis qua fre­quentat no­stra com­muni [...]tant [...] mirabilia fiunt. Aug. de vnit. Ec­cles. cap. 16. Quia nec nos propterea dicimus, &c. Because wee our selues doe not say wee must therefore be belee­ued, for that wee are in the Church of Christ, or else for that Optatus and Ambrose, and infinite other Bishops of our Communion, haue com­mended the Church which wee hold, or because our Church hath bin published in the Coun­cells of our Colleagues, or be­cause [Page 8] in all places of the world where our Communion is fre­quented, there are so many mi­racles wrought. This was the doctrine of Saint Austen, and the ancient Fathers, and this is ours; they required no more of the Donatists, but to lay apart all preten­ded titles, and relie onely vpon the word of God, we offer to the Romanists, no lesse then to accept the same conditions vpon triall of that title, and relie only vp­on that word.

I must confesse, I thinke a more speedy way might haue been found to haue gi­uen an answere to the Con­trouersies of that age: for Saint Austen might haue poynted at the Church in [Page 9] the West, which was then as conspicuous as the Sun at Noone day; hee might haue answered them, it was a Citie vpon a hill, which was visible to all. He might haue produced the Apostle for a witnesse, that her faith was published throughout the whole world: he might haue con­futed them with sacred Councells, and Doctrine of the ancient Fathers, and confirmed his trueth with the death of constant Mar­tyrs, which sealed their do­ctrine with their blood in the testimonie of the true faith. Certainely, all these proofes were pregnant in his time, and he might easi­ly haue produced them in behalfe of his Church (as [Page 10] our aduersaries in these dayes doe for theirs:) but hee left these brags to these latter times, and sends them to the Law, to the Testimo­nies, to the word of Christ, that speaketh better things then was possible for man to vtter;Ne in Ec­clesia erra­res, ne quis tibi diceret Christus est qui non est Christꝰ, aut Ecclesia est quae non est Ecclesia, audi vocem Pastoris — ostendit Ec­clesiam ne quis te fal­lat in no­mine Eccle­siae. Aug. Psal. 69. and to that end (saith hee) thou mightest not erre in the Church, and lest any man should say this is Christ, who is not Christ, or this is the Church which is not the Church, heare the voyce of the Shepheard, hee hath shewed thee the Church, that the name of the Church may not deceiue thee. The summe and substance there­fore of St. Austens doctrine was this, that neither Bi­shops, nor Councels, nor Miracles, nor rumors of the [Page 11] Catholique name, doe de­monstrate the Church of God to be Catholique (for all these are common to he­retiques, as well as Catho­liques;) but the holy Scrip­tures which beare the testi­mony of Iesus, they onely carry the infallible markes of his trueth,In Scriptu­ris didicimꝰ Christum, in Scripturis didicimus ecclesiam. Aug. ep. 166 and in them (faith hee) wee haue knowen Christ, in them we haue knowen the Church.

Neither was this the o­pinion of Saint Austen only; for Saint Hierom tels vs, that in his dayes the Church was not gone out of her limits of the holy Scriptures, Non est e­gressa de fi­nibus suis, id est de Scrip­turis san­ctis. Hier. lib. 1. c. 1. in Mich. and from thence the timber and materi­alls must bee taken, with which the house of wisedome is to bee built. And Saint Chrysostome [Page 12] as a wise Master-Builder in this house, gaue this Caueat to the worke-men in after ages;Chrys. in o­pere imper­fecto. Hom. 49. It can no way be knowen which is the true Church (nisi tantummodó per Scripturas) but onely by the Scriptures; Non enim per alios di­spositionem salutis no­stra cogno­uimꝰ, quam per ees per quos euan­gelium per­uenit ad nos quod quidē tūc praeconi­auerunt, po­steà verò per Dei volun­tatē in scripturis nobis tradiderunt fundamen­tum et Co­lumnā fidei nostrae futu­rum. I [...]en. advers. hae­res. l. 3. c. 1. o­therwise if they had regard to other things, they should bee of­fended and perish, and not vn­derstand which is the true Church. And lastly, the lear­ned Father Irenaeus assures vs; Non per alios, &c. by no other haue wee knowne the way of our saluation, but by them, by whom the Gospel came to vs, which verily they then preach­ed, and afterwards by the will of God deliuered the same to vs in the Scriptures, to bee the Foundation, and Pillar of our Faith.

[Page 13]Tell me then in this lat­ter age and time of Con­trouersie, wherein it is com­monly voyced in our eares, Loe heere is Christ, and there is Christ, this is the true Church, and that is the true Church; how shall the reli­gious man, which loueth trueth, and seeketh comfort, resolue himselfe? to which Church shal he safely ioine himselfe, when perhaps he wants the learning, perhaps the leasure to looke backe­ward for 1600 yeeres, and rightly examine the do­ctrine of both Churches? If hee seeke the Protestant Church, behold shee being poore, & despised for want of continued eminencie, is become a stumbling blocke [Page 14] to the ignorant. If he looke on the Roman Church, be­hold,Reu. 17.2, &c. Shee is arayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones, and the inhabitants of the earth haue beene made drunke with the wine of her fornicati­ons, and they that follow her, wonder with great admiration. And without doubt the Popes triple Crownes, the golden crosses, the Legend of Saints, the multitude of professed Orders, their pompe in Processions, their rich cloathing of Images, their pretended power of their Priesthood, the great rumour of their Catholique cause, their Iubilies, and Pardons, their Merits and Miracles doe so dazle the [Page 15] eyes of the ignorant and common people, that they thinke there is no Church true and visible but the Ro­mane Church: and certen­ly the case thus standing, wee haue no better plea for our Church,Vtrum nos schismatici sumꝰ an vos, nec ego, nec tu sed Chri­stus interro­getur vt in­dicet eccle­siam suam. Aug. cont. lit Pet lib. 2. c. 85. then the holy Father Saint Austen, some­times made to Petilian the Donatian heretique; Whether of vs be Schismatiques, we or you, aske you not me, I will not aske you; let Christ bee asked, that hee may shew vs his owne Church.

SECT. II. Our aduersaries pretences from the obscuritie of Scriptures, and inconueniences of the Lay peoples reading them, answered.

I Speake not this, as if the Romanists of these times did wholly waue the Scriptures: for if wee may credit Doctor Sanders; There are most plaine Scrip­tures in all poynts for the Ca­tholique Faith, Rocke of the Church cap 8. p. 193 and none at all against the same. And their owne Bristow would make the world beleeue,Brist. Mot. 48. from the beginning of Genesis, to the end of the Apocalyps, there is no text [Page 17] that makes for vs against them, but all for them. If these men haue spoken the trueth, let them beare witnesse of the truth, onely let me tell you, the Rhemists in their Annota­tions vpon the Gospel, pro­fesse in the name of their Church, that, if wee should, Rhem. An­not. in 1. Cor. 1.5. when wee came to yeeres of dis­cretion, be set to picke our Faith out of the Scriptures, there would bee a mad worke, and many Faiths among vs. And their fellow Ecchius pro­claimes to all the world,Ecch. Eu­chirid c. 4. that the Lutherans are dolts, which will haue nothing belee­ued, but that which is expresse Scripture: for all things are not deliuered manifestly in the Scriptures, but very many are left to the determination of the [Page 18] Church. Haeresin esse si quis dicit necessarium esse vt Scripturae in vul­gares lin­guas cōuer­tantur. Sand. visib. Monar. hae­res. 191. And their Proselyte Sanders, who pretends such euident testimonies of the Scriptures in behalfe of his Church, accounts it no bet­ter then heresie to translate them. And Peresius his fel­low Iesuite, complaines; It is the Deuils inuention to permit the people to reade them. Diaboli in­uentum esse vt populus Biblia lege­re permitte­retur. Pe­res. de Tra. part. 1. assert 3. And it is the generall vote of the best learned Romanists, The reading of the Bible makes more hereticall Lutherans, then Roman Catholiques. If therefore the Scriptures are such pregnant & plaine testimonies in behalfe of the Romane Faith (as some Romanists pretend) why do they condemne the transla­ting of them? why do they not permit the people to [Page 19] reade them? and if all pla­ces of Scripture make for them, and none for vs, how comes it to passe, that by reading them, many Papists by their own confession be­come Protestants?

It is the blasphemous as­sertion of Albertus Pigghius; Nō vt scri­ptu illa prae­essent fidei et Religioni nostrae, sed potiùs vt subessent. Pig Hierar. lib. 1. c. 2. that the Apostles haue writ­ten certaine things, but not to that end their writings should rule our faith, but ra­ther that they should be vnder, and ruled by our faith and Re­ligion. And heereupon hee quarrels with all those that submit their knowledge to the authoritie of the Gos­pell:Si dixeris haec referri oportere ad iudicium Scriptura­rum cōmu­nis te sensus ignarū esse comprobat, sunt enim scriptura muti Iudi­ces. Pigh. cont. 3. de Eccles. If thou shalt teach (saith hee) that those things must be put to the Iudgement of the Scriptures, thou shewest thy selfe [Page 20] to bee voyd of common reason: for the Scriptures are dumbe Iudges, & cannot speake. Nei­ther is this the opinion of some priuate spirits, which of late haue declined the authority of the Scriptures: but if wee looke beyond Luther, wee shall finde that almost 300 yeares before his dayes, the Romanists did endeauor by all meanes to extinguish the light of the Gospell.

About the yeare 1255, there was a great conten­tion betwixt the Vniuersi­tie of Paris, and the Order of Franciscan Fryers, in which dissention the Fryer Mendicants published a book called Euangelium aeternum, Mat. Paris. in Hist. An. 1256. the eternall Gospell: in this [Page 21] Booke it was declared, that the Gospell of Christ was not the euerlasting Gospell; that it was to cease and determine as the olde Law did at the com­ming of Christ, that the Go­spell of Christ should from that time continue but 50 yeares, and that their new Gospell did containe as much or more, then the whole Bible, that theirs was the Gospell of Christ, and the eternall Gospell. Neither was this wicked blasphemy pub­lished by one man, but by a whole Order of Monkes and Fryars. Neither were they vpstart opinions (like mushromes growne vp in a night) but they were set a­foot fifty fiue yeares before that time. This and much more of the like doctrine [Page 22] is to bee read in Mathew Pa­ris, B. Vsher de Eccles. suc­cess & statu cap 9. p. 278 and more particularly in that excellent Treatise of the Succession and state of Christi­an Churches.

Thus the Romish Priests of the former and latter a­ges, agree like Pilate and He­rod, both to the condemna­tion of Christ & his Word; and as Herod (saith Ambrose) burnt the Scriptures, Ambr. in Luc. lib 3. lest by meanes of such ancient Re­cords, some doubt might after­wards be made of his posterity; In like manner our late Ro­manistes haue silenced the Scriptures, lest by such an­cient Euidences their new Articles of Faith should be discouered; and had it not beene for feare or shame, I am verily perswaded, they [Page 23] had fulfilled in a sense to litterall the words of the Apostle: The fire shall trie euery mans worke, of what sort it is. Now can any man imagine why these men should bee so angry with Christ and his Apostles? Can they say the Scriptures are subiect to errours, and neede an Index Expurgato­rius? No, they dare not, they will not say so; but they say,Lind. lib. 2. Strom. c. 2. &c. they are dead cha­racters, a killing letter without life, a matter of contention, a wood of theeues, a shop of here­tiques, imperfect, doubtfull, fall of perplexities, not to be per­mitted to the common peo­ple:Laicis lecti­onē scripturarum per­mittere esset sanctū dare canibus & Margaritas antè porcos proiicere. Hos. de ex­press verbo Dei. for this were all one (saith Hosius) as to giue that which is holy vnto dogges, and cast [Page] [...] [Page] [...] [Page] [...] [Page] [...] [Page] [...] [Page 1] [...] [Page 2] [...] [Page 3] [...] [Page 4] [...] [Page 5] [...] [Page 6] [...] [Page 7] [...] [Page 8] [...] [Page 9] [...] [Page 10] [...] [Page 11] [...] [Page 12] [...] [Page 13] [...] [Page 14] [...] [Page 15] [...] [Page 16] [...] [Page 17] [...] [Page 18] [...] [Page 19] [...] [Page 20] [...] [Page 21] [...] [Page 22] [...] [Page 23] [...] [Page 24] pearles before swine. Nay more, Cardinall Bellarmine assures vs, that the people will not onely reape no benefit, but detriment, by reading them: for they would easily take occa­sion to erre both in manners and doctrine. Populus non solum non caperet fru­ctum ex Scripturis, sed etiā ca­peret detri­mentum. Bell. de ver­bo Dei lib. 2 cap. 15. Bell. ibid. And for confirma­tion of his assertion among other proofes he giues this instance: If an ignorant lay­man should reade of the adul­tery of Dauid, of the incest of Thamar, of the lyes of Iudith, and many such like things con­teined in the Scriptures, either it would cause him to imitate their examples, or hee would thinke them to bee lying inuen­tions, or being not able to re­solue them, would be in danger to beleeue nothing at all. These & the like examples (which [Page 25] in trueth concerne the liues and manners of men, not the doctrine,) are registred by the will and mercie of that good God, to preuent despaire in others, who may vnhappily fall into the like sinnes; and yet that no man might presume to commit the like sinnes, by their ex­amples; hee who reades of the adultery of Dauid, shall read likewise of the punish­ment allotted to his sinnes: and hee that reads the par­ticular examples of Tha­mar and Iudith, shall finde such seuere and fearefull iudgements in generall de­nounced against those sins, that he shal haue little cause or comfort to follow their examples in such particu­lars; [Page 26] but from hence rather we may obserue the since­ritie of the Pen-men of the holy Ghost, who impartial­ly set downe the vices of the best men, and greatest Patriarkes, as well as their vertues: and by this decla­ration of the sinnes of the regenerate, and best seruants of Christ, wee are taught to humble our selues, and to flie to our Sauiour for mer­cie and grace, that euery tongue may confesse to thee, O God, Thou onely art holy: And certainely from hence (I meane from these & the like examples,) Saint Austen, Saint Hierom, and the ancient Fathers, confuted the Pelagian Heretikes, who with Bellarmine and his as­sociates [Page 27] maintained the per­fection of righteousnesse in this life. But admit these and many such like places were hard to be vnderstood in Scriptures,Est fluuius planꝰ et al­tus, in quo agnus am­bulet, et e­lephas na­tet. Greg. ad Leand. praef. Ioh. cap. 4. yet there is milke for babes, as well as stron­ger meate for stronger men there is depth (saith Gregorie) for the Elephant to swimme, and shallow fords for the lambe to wade in. Hee that gaue a heart and wisedome to the Apostles to preach that heauenly word, opened the heart of Lydia, (a poore ig­norant woman) to vnder­stand it: and for that pur­pose (saith Chrysostome) the Spirit of God hath so ordered and disposed the Scriptures, Chrys. in Conc. 3. de Lazaro. that Publicanes, and Fishers, and Tent-makers, and Shepheards, [Page 28] Apostles and vnlearned men, should be saued by those bookes: and to that ende no ignorant man should pretend obscuritie for his excuse, it is ordained that the labourer and seruant, the widow woman, and the most vnlearned man, by hearing them, should reape some bene­fit. Nay more (saith he) to whom are the Scriptures ob­scure, who is there that heareth the words, Blessed are the meek, Blessed are the merciful, Blessed are the pure in heart, and the like, that shall need an Exposi­tor? Besides the words, the Miracles, the Histories, they are knowne and euident to all: and lastly he concludes, that the difficultie and ob­scuritie of the Scriptures, (which the Romanists pre­tend [Page 29] at this day) Is but a vaile and pretext to cloake idle­nesse. Praetextꝰ est et causatio pigritiaeque velamentū. Chrysost. Nos libē [...]èr f [...]emur tūc tēporis Lai­cos in Scrip­turarum le­ctione fuisse versatos. Azor. Tom. 1. Moral. li. 8 cap 26 Ita prouidit dulcis pater­neminē esse tam rudē et imperitum, quin si hu­militèr le­gat multa illie vtilia vera (que) in­telligat, ne­minem tam doctū quin illic multo plura igno­ret quā sci­at. A [...] of l. 2 de Christo Reuel. c. [...]. This doctrine was so frequent & generall among the Ancients in the Primi­tiue church, that Azorius the Iesuite is inforced to confesse, We willingly grant, that in those dayes the lay people were conuersant in the reading of the Scriptures. And if we looke vpon the lay persons of their times, Acosta his fellow Iesuite ingenuously professeth, that Our graci­ous God hath so prouided in ho­ly Writ, that there is none so rude and ignorant, but by rea­ding the Scriptures in humility, may vnderstand many things both profitable and true, as like­wise there is none so learned, but hee may still bee ignorant of [Page 30] more then he knowes: nay more (saith hee) I haue seene some men vtterly vnlearned, Vidi viros prorsus illi­teratos, &c. Idem. cap. 5. and scarce knowing Latin, haue ga­thered out of the Scriptures such profound knowledge, that I haue wondred at them. But the spirituall man iudgeth all things. Heere is a free con­fession, and a faire euidence from two learned Iesuites: the one testifieth that the scriptures were vsually read by the Lay people in the Primitiue Church; the o­ther witnesseth of his owne knowledge, that an igno­rant man hath receiued great benefit, and likewise that great profite may re­dound to the people by reading them in these daies.

But put the case a Lay [Page 31] man should not vnderstand those things which are con­tained in the Scriptures: notwithstanding (ex ipsà Le­ctione) out of the very rea­ding of them, there will arise great holinesse and sanctitie of life. Admit many things are hard to bee vnderstood in the Scriptures, (which neuer any Protestant denyed) yet saith Hierome, Hiero. in Epist. ad Paulinum. there is the Booke of Genesis, most plaine for euery mans vn­derstanding; therein you may see the creation of the World, the beginning of Mankind, the confusion of Languages plainely descri­bed: and as touching the booke of Iob, there you may learne a patterne for Pati­ence, and there you may see [Page 32] the Resurrection plainly de­ciphered:Magna vti­litatis est ipsa obscuri­tas eloquio­rū Dei quia exereet sen­sum vt fa­tigatione ditatetur, &c. Greg. lib. 1. Hom. 6. in Ezek. nay more, The obscuritie of the Scripture is very profitable (saith Gregory) for it doth exercise the senses, whereby one may vnderstand that which otherwise hee would be ignorant of: for if the sa­cred Scriptures were easie and familiar in all places, they would be neglected: which ob­scure places, by study and in­dustry being knowne, and vn­derstood, do comfort and reuiue the Reader, by how much the more they are with industry and difficultie sought and vnder­stood.

But that which is obserua­ble, these men, who so much complaine of the obscuritie of the Scriptures, doe both wittingly and willingly in­deauour [Page 33] in their Translati­ons, to make them abstruse, and hard to be vnderstood, by their strange & vncouth phrases: looke vpon their old Testament in their Do­way Translation, instead of Foreskin, Gene. 17. Exod 12. 2. King. 15. 1 Chron. 6. they haue put Prae­puce; for Passeouer, Phase; for vnleauened bread, Azyms; for high places, excelces; for the Holy of Holiest, Sancta Sancto­rum. Againe, looke vpon their Rhemist Testament, and there you shal obserue these strange wordes, Depositum, Rhem. Test. in M. Fulks Preface to the Reader. Exinanited, Parasceue, Di­dragmes, Neophyte, and the like, which shewes, that al­beit the Scripture of it selfe were neuer so plaine and perspicuous to euery mans vnderstanding, yet there [Page 34] need an expositor: for these inkehorne termes, whereas in trueth, although those words were most agreeable to the Hebrew, Greeke, or La­tine, yet ought they rather to giue the most significant and plaine termes (the true sense of Scripture alwayes premised) that stands best for the capacitie and vnder­standing of the Reader.

It is not then the preten­ded obscurity of the Scrip­tures, which giues a iust cause of restraint to the lay people, for not reading of them: (for this is but a colour and a vaine pretext of them, saith Chrysostome) the trueth is, they feare, lest by rea­ding of them, their Trent doctrine, and new Articles [Page 35] of Faith should be discoue­red: for it would trouble the best learned Priest, to shew his disciples, in what place of Scripture they are commanded to worship I­mages, to call vpon dead Saints, to pray in an vn­knowne tongue, to forbid the Scriptures to the Laity, to deny Mariage to Priests, to adore the reliques of Saints; by what Scriptute his Holinesse hath power to depose Kings, to free soules out of Purgatory, to gather into the Treasurie of the Church, the superabundant satisfaction of Saints? It is a crime worthy of the In­quisition with them to haue a Bible; but for the igno­rant lay man to make such [Page 36] enquirie after Scriptures, for that doctrine which was not conceiued in the Scripture, is a sinne worthy of death.

Looke vpon the Tenets of their owne Church, and take but their owne confes­sions. The Church of Rome doth represent God the Fa­ther, by the image of an olde man: yet Vasques the Iesuit confesseth:Vasq. lib. 2. de Adorat. c. 3. disp. 4. n. 74. The Scrip­ture saith plainely, God did forbid the Iewes to represent Him by an Image. The Church of Rome doth or­dinarily make vowes to Saints:Cum scribe­rentur Scripturae sanctae nondū caepe­rat vsus vo­uēdi sanctis. Bell. lib. de cultu Sanct. cap. 5. yet Cardinall Bel­larmine professeth: When the Scriptures were written, it was not the vse to vow to Saints. The Church of [Page 37] Rome hath defined, and de­clared Indulgences for an ar­ticle of faith; yet their Syl­uester Prierias, tells vs:Indulgentiae authoritate Scripturae non innotu­êre nobis, sed &c. Prier. cont. Luther. pro Indulg. They are not made knowne to vs by the authoritie of Scriptures: The Church of Rome tea­cheth, that the wordes of Christ, This is my body, doe effect Transubstantiation, yet Cardinal Caietan confes­seth;In 3 part. Tho. super quae 75. art. 1. vt Ioseph Ang. Flores Theol. quae. in 4. sent q. 4. Non apparet ex Evan­gelio: It doth not appeare that those words are properly to bee vnderstood by force of Scrip­tures: but which is more to bee lamented, these men are so farre from building their Church vpon the Scriptures, that, as it were in despight of Christs pre­cept, they decree their halfe Communion for an article [Page 38] of Faith, with a Non obstante. Notwithstanding, Christ did institute in both kinds: Conc. Cōst Sess. 13. And their Councell of Trent ac­knowledgeth that the Apo­stle called concupiscence sinne: Hanc con­cupiscētiam quam ali­quando A­postolus pec­catū appel­lat, sancta Synodus ac­clarat, &c. Conc. Trid. Sess. 5. but withall commands the contrary beliefe, with a curse to them that teach the Apostles doctrine; in so much as their owne Posseui­nus confesseth in sober sad­nesse:Apostolus concupis [...]ē tiam pecca­tum vocat, at non licet nolis ita lo­qui. P [...]st. Appar. Sac. Ver Patr. antiqui. The Apostle calls concu­piscence sinne, but (saith he) it is not lawfull for vs so to doe. This is so truly knowne and vnderstood of those who haue a dispensation to read the Scriptures, that Petrus Sutor, a Carthusian Monke, a­mongst other inconuenien­ces for which hee would haue the people debarred [Page 39] from reading of them, al­leadgeth this,Cum multa palam tra­dantur ob­seruāda quae sacris in li­teris expres­se non habē ­tur, nonnè Idiotae haec animaduer­tentes faci [...]è murmura­bunt?—Nó­ne et facilè retrahentur ab obserua­tione Insti­tutionū Ec­clesiasticarū quandò eas in lege Chri­sti animad­uerterint non conti­ners? Sutor de Translat. Bib. cap. 22. in speciall for one; Whereas many things are openly taught to bee obserued, which are not to bee expressely had in the whole Scriptures, the simple people obseruing these things, will quickly murmure and complaine, that so great burdens should be imposed vp­on them, whereby the libertie of the Gospell is so greatly impai­red, and they also will bee easily drawen away from the obserua­tion of the ordinance of the Church, when they shall obserue that they are not conteined in the Law of Christ. It is not then the obscuritie of the Scriptures; but a feare by their owne confessions of some strange discouery that would be made by reading [Page 40] of them, and in that feare they rather intimate a plain­nesse and easinesse in the vnderstanding them: for o­therwise what need they feare the peoples reading them, if they were so full of obscuritie (as they pretend) that they could not vnder­stand them.

As therefore wee denie not that there is difficultie and obscuritie in the Scrip­tures,In iis quae aperiè in scripturis posita sunt, inueniun­tur illa om­nia quae cō ­tinent fidē mores (que) vi­uendi. Aug. de doctr. Christ. lib. 2. cap. 9. so wee professe like­wise, that there are plaine and euident testimonies, which illustrate those diffi­cult and obscure places, and that in those plain and euident places al things cocerning faith and good manners are contai­ned: This was Saint Austens doctrine, this is ours; let vs [Page 41] therefore follow that sweet counsell, which that holy and ancient Father, by way of preuention, gaue the Christians of his time. We are brethren, why doe we striue? Aug in Psa. 21. expos. 2. Our Father dyed not vntestate, hee made a Testament and so dyed. Men doe striue about the goods of the dead, till the Testa­ment bee brought foorth, then that is brought, they yeeld to haue it opened and read: the Iudge doth hearken, the Coun­sellers bee silent, the cryer bid­deth peace, all the people are at­tentiue, that the words of the dead may bee read and heard. He lyeth voyd of life, and fee­ling in his graue, and his words preuaile, Christ doth sit in hea­uen, and is his Testament gain­said? Open it, let vs reade, we [Page 42] are brethren, why doe we striue? Let our mindes be pacified, our Father hath not left vs with­out a Testament, he that made the Testament, is liuing for euer. Hee doeth heare our words, he doth know his owne words, let vs reade why doe we striue?

SECT. III. The Scripture, according to the Iudgment of the ancient Fa­thers, is the sole Iudge of Con­trouersies, and Interpreter of it selfe.

BVsaeus the Iesuite, knowing that the Scriptures were not such euident testimonies of the Roman faith,Si non potes effugere vel disputatio­nē, vel colla­tionē de re­bus fidei cū haeretico (cui tamē de do­ctrinâ infe­riorem non esse existi­mas) primū ab eo percū ­ctare vnde argumenta suav lit de­promere cō ­trà fidē Ca­tholicam, si respondeat vt solent ex scripturis diuinis, op­pone illi, nul lāvel incer­tā ex Scrip­turis sperari victoria, ni­si prius con­stet veri sint possessores scripturae il­li an nos? & vbi sit vera fides et potestas ex­ponēdi scri­pturas. Bu­saeus in Pa­natio Tit. Haeres. as his fel­lowes pretended; by way of preuention giues this caueat to his disciples; If you can­not auoyd disputation with an heretique, touching poynts of faith; although you finde you are able to match him, yet first demand of him, from whence [Page 44] hee will deriue his arguments against the Catholique faith; if he answere, as commonly they doe, Out of the sacred Scrip­tures: tell him, there is no vi­ctory, at least but vncertaine, to be hoped for from them, vnlesse it may appeare who hath best right to the Scriptures, and to whom belongs authoritie to ex­pound them. By this Iesuites confession, the poynts in controuersie, are sub judice in question, to which side the right of Scriptures doe belong, and to whom au­thoritie to expound them; and sooth to say, the con­trouersies of this age, are now brought to this nar­row issue, that our aduersa­ries are well content, to trie their cause by Scriptures, if [Page 45] the Reformed Churches would graunt them but this one poore request, That they may be sole Iudges and Interpreters of the Scrip­ture.

A request no doubt, which in most mens vnder­standing, will seeme vnrea­sonable, that Christ and his Apostles should bee iudged by man, or that a man should bee Plaintiffe, and Iudge in his owne cause. It was the constant profession of Saint Austen; August lib. Confess. 13. c. 23. Men spiri­tuall, whether they rule or bee ruled, iudge according to the Spirit, but they iudge not of the spirituall knowledge, which shineth in the firmament (of the Scriptures,) for it is not lawfull for any man to judge [Page 46] ouer so high authoritie: for bee the man neuer so spirituall, yet must hee be a doer, not a Iudge of the Law. And in the con­clusion of the Chapter, hee giues his speciall reason for it: There a man is said to bee Iudge, where he hath power and authority to correct. He there­fore who shall first dare to correct the scripture, let that man by S Austens rule assume authoritie to iudge them: and as touching that Tenet, that a man should be Plain­tiffe, and Iudge in his owne cause, it was a doctrine so different from the Primi­tiue Church, that in the midst of heresies; I say, in the first and best ages, wher­in Saint Austen and Epipha­nius mention aboue foure­score [Page 47] heresies; euen then when the Fathers had grea­test reason to stand vpon the priuiledge of their Church, they neuer made answere (like the Romanists) You must heare the Church, and our Church is that Catho­lique Church that is the sole Iudge of controuersies, and according to our Inter­pretation (whose right it is to iudge of the Scriptures) it is so and so; but on the contrary, they made the Scriptures sole Iudges of their cause, and withall pro­fessed, the Text of Scripture was the truest Glosse in ex­pounding of it selfe.

I speake not this, as if our reueren'd Diuines did make the Scriptures sole Iudges [Page 48] of our cause, excluding the testimonie of the Church: for we haue a church as wel as they, we haue churchmen as well versd in Scriptures, and Fathers as themselues: neither doe wee denie the authoritie of the Fathers, which ioyntly agree in poynts of faith, for the right expounding of the Scriptures; onely wee say, the Authour of the Word who best knew his owne meaning, was best able to expound himselfe: and in this manner the ancient Fa­thers, as they grounded their Church vpon the Scriptures, so likewise they referred backe the meaning of the Scriptures vnto the Authour of them, as if hee [Page 49] that was Iudge of all men, should bee iudged of none, and such wee know is the wisdome and goodnesse of God,Eaverò quae in mysteriis occultat, nec ipsa eloquio superbo eri­git quo non audeat ac­cedere mens cardiuscula et in erudi­ta, quasi pauper ad diuitem, sed inuitat om­nes humili sermone, quos nō solū manifestâ pascat sed etiā secretâ exerceat ve­ritate hoc in promptis qd [...]recondi­tis habens. Aug. Ep. 3. that hee hath often­times hidde these things from the wise and learned, which he hath reuealed vnto babes and sucklings; and, as for those things which it hideth in mise­ries (saith Austen) it lifteth them vp, not with stately speech, whereby an vnlearned minde should not presume to approach as a poore man to a rich, but with a lowly speech inuiteth all men, that it might not only feed them with manifest, but also exercise with obscure trueth, hauing that in manifest, that it hath in obscure places: and as concerning obscure places, the same holy Father tells [Page 50] vs,Illi verò qui ea quae in diuinislibris obscura sunt intueri ne­quiuerint, arbitrentur se digitum quidē meū ineuers posse sydera verò quibꝰ demō ­strandis in­tenditur vi­dere no posse et illi ergo et isto me reprohēdere desinant et lumen ocu­lorum diui­nitùs sibi praeberi de­preceantur. Aug. de doct. Chris. l. 1. Prolog. that, if they cannot see the things which are obscure and dark in the Scriptures, the fault is in themselues, not in the pre­cepts, as if I should poynt with my finger at a starre, which they would gladly see, and their eye-sight were so weake, that al­though they did see my finger, yet they could not see the starre, at which I poynt: let them cease to blame me, and let them pray to God, that hee will giue them eye-sight. And in his foure Books of Christian Doctrine, where he purposely treateth of expounding the Scrip­tures, he plainely prooueth, that the meaning of the Word, is learned out of the Word, and the obscure pla­ces are expounded by the manifest: and heerein hee [Page 51] toucheth the freehold of the Romane Church:Magnificè et salubritèr spiritꝰ sanctꝰ ita Scriptu­ras sanctas modisi auit vt locis a­pertioribus fami occur­reret, obscu­rioribus au­tem fastidia detergeret. Nihil enim fere de illis obscuritati­bus eruitur, qd [...]on pla­nissimè di­ctū alibi re­peritur. Aug. de doct. Chris. lib. 2. [...]a. 6. for (saith hee) In this great plentie of Scriptures, wee are fed with plaine things, and exercised with obscure, those driue away hunger, these contempt, the ho­ly Ghost hauing tempred them so of purpose: and then he con­cludeth with the Tenet of our church; There is scarce any thing drawn out of these obscure places, which hath not been spo­ken, (quod non planissimè) most plainely some other where. Neither was this the opinion of this learned Father only, but it was the confession of S Ambrose, Multa ob­scuritas in Scripturis propheticis, [...]d si [...] anu [...]ā mē [...] [...] [...] [...] a scr [...] tu­ [...]arū, [...] [...]e [...] qua sunt oc­culta dili­gentèr exa­mines, pau­latim inci­pies rationē colligere di­ctorū et ope­rietur tibi, Non ab alio sed à verbo Dei. Amb. in Psal. 118. Serm. 8. There is much obscu­rity in the Scriptures, but with­all, if thou knocke at the doore with the hand of thy vnderstanding, thou shalt gather by [Page 52] little and little the reason of that which is there spoken, and the doore shall bee opened vnto thee, (non ab alio, sed à verbo Dei) and that by no other but by the Word of God it selfe. And with these Doctors of the Latin Church, agreeth the Greeke Fathers. Behold (saith Basil) and heare the Scripture expounding it selfe, Basil. Hexā. Hom. 4. Yea (saith he) what things be or seeme to bee couertly spoken in some places of holy Scrip­ture, Quae ambi­gua sunt & tectè dicta esse in qui­busdā diui­nae scripturae locis, viden­tu [...], ab aliis locis mani­festis declarātur. Idē. quaest. cōp. Expl. quaest. 267. Ad ipsū diuina Script. scopū ince­damus quae­seipsam in­terpretatur, quāuis sacra Scriptura cum nos tale quiddā do­cere vult, seipsā expo­nit et audi­torē errare non sinit. Chrys Hō. 13. in Gen. Chrys. in 1. Thes. Hō 7. Siquidē em­pturꝰ vestē, quāuis artis Textoriae imperitꝰ sis, haec verba non dicis. Nescio eme­re illudunt mihi, sed fa­cis omnia vt discas — fac illa quae facienda et re­ctâ ratione quaere à Deo et ille tibi omnino re­ue [...]abit. Idē Homil. 33. in Act. the same are expounded by other plaine places elsewhere. And (saith Chrysostome) Let vs follow the scope of the holy Scripture in interpreting of it selfe, when it teacheth some hard thing, it expoundeth it selfe, and suffereth not the hea­rer to erre. Let vs not feare [Page 53] therefore (saith hee) to put our selues with full saile into the sea of Scriptures, because wee shall be sure to find the Word of God for our Pilot. And lastly, as it were forestalling that Popish opinion; (that the Scriptures are obscure, and therefore not to be read by the vulgar people) hee ele­gantly incites a Gentile to the reading of the Scrip­ture, by a familiar and com­mon reason; When thou buy­est a garment, though thou haue no skill in weauing, yet thou sayest not, I cannot buy it, they will deceiue mee: but thou dost vse all meanes to learne how to know it: doe therefore those things which are to bee done, seeke all those things of God, and hee altogether will reaueale it [Page 54] vnto thee: So that if any doubt or difference happe­ned in the Primitiue church amongst the true beleeuing Christians, they referred the determination of it to the Inquest of Christ & his 12 Apostles, and they one­ly were made the sole Iud­ges of the question. And that wee might know this Protestant doctrine conti­nued for many ages in the Church, Pope Clement the first almost sixe hundred yeeres since, professed it for the Catholike doctrine of his time,Integra & firma regu­la veritatis ex Scriptu­ris. Dist. 37. cap 14. that a man must take the sense of truth from the Scripture it selfe, seeing that e­uery man may haue the full and firme rule of faith and truth in the Scriptures. If we [Page 55] descend frō the Pope to the great Councell of Basil, it was the general vote of many B. and Cardinalls, and confir­med likewise by the Pope himselfe. The Diuine Law, (or holy Scripture) the pra­ctise of Christ, of his Apostles, Lex diuina, praxu Chri­sti, Apostoli­ca, et Eccle­sia primiti­na vnâ cum Cōciliis Do­ctoribusque fundantibꝰ se veracitèr in eadē, pro verissimo et indifferente Iudice in hoc Basili­ensi Consilia admittatur Conc. Basil. Sess. 4. and the Primitiue Church, to­gether with Councels and Do­ctors, grounding themselues truely vpon the Scriptures, shall bee admitted, for the most true and indifferent Iudge in the Councell of Basil. The reso­lution of the ancient Father Optatus, in the question be­twixt the Catholiques and the heretiques, whether one should bee twise baptized, may serue for a proofe, and a full conclusion of the premisses; You say it is law­full, [Page 56] wee say it is not lawfull, (betweene yours it is lawfull, and ours it is not lawfull) the peoples soules doe doubt and wauer, De coelo quaerendus est Index, sed vt quid pulsamus ad coelum, cum habemus in Euangelio Testamen­tum. Opt. lib. 5. contr. Parmen. Donat. let none beleeue you nor vs, wee are all contending par­ties, Iudges must be sought for: if Christians, they cannot be gi­uen on both sides, (for truth is hindred by affections.) A Iudge without must bee sought for; if a Paynim, hee cannot know the Christian mysteries; if a Iew, hee is an enemie to Christian Baptisme: no iudgement ther­fore of this matter can bee found on earth, a Iudge in hea­uen must bee sought for. But why knocke we at heauen, when wee haue the Testament of Christ in the Gospell. And thus I haue briefly shewed you the deputed Iudges, [Page 57] and Interpreters of the Scripture in the Primitiue Church: now let vs ob­serue by what Rule the Scriptures are expounded in the Roman Church.

SECT. IIII. Our aduersaries, howsoeuer they pretend by taking an oath to make the Fathers Interpre­ters of the Scriptures, yet in­deed they make themselues sole Interpreters of Scrip­tures and Fathers.

Bulla Pij quarti Art. 2.IT is an Article of the Romame Creed, publi­shed by Pope Pius the fourth, and by the oath their Foreman hath taken, all Priestes and I suites are sworne, Not to receiue or in­terpret the Scriptures, but ac­cording to the vnifo [...]me consent of Fathers. It is a large and faire promise, and deliuered [Page 59] vpon oath: and for my part, if the church of Rome can make good the vni­forme consent of Fathers, for all their twelue newe Articles of Faith, (which hath been often promised, but neuer as yet by any one performed,) I shall willing­ly listen to their interpre­tation, and preferre it before any priuate, or latter Expo­sition.

It was the profession of our late King of famous memory,Apolog. for the oath of Alleag. pa. 36. What euer the Fa­thers of the first foure hundred yeeres did with one vnanime consent agree vpon, to be belee­ued as a necessary poynt of sal­uation, I will beleeue it also, or at leastwise will bee hum­blie silent, not taking vpon [Page 60] mee to condemne the same.

I speake not this, as if we should decline the practise of the ancient Church in expounding Scripture by Scripture,Concil. Trid. Sess. 1. but to demon­strate to the world, that our aduersaries in this poynt of their faith, haue neither fol­lowed the ancient Church, nor the Decree of their Trent Councell; whereby it shall appeare, that either this Article was newly cre­ated, or the former Popes and Councels haue disa­greed from the latter.

Cardinall Caietan was so farre from subscribing to the Popes Creed in this poynt, that on the contrary hee giues this Praemonition to the Reader of the Scrip­tures; [Page 61] Not to loathe the new sense of the holy Scriptures for this, Nullus ita (que) detestetur nouū sacra scripturae sē ­sum, ex hoc qd dissonat à priscis Do­ctoribus, sed fcrutetur perspicacius textū ac có­textū Scrip­turae, & si quadrare inuenerit, laudet Deū, qui nō alli­gauit ex­positionem Scripturarū sacrarum priscorū Do­ctorum sen­sibus Caiet. in Genes 1. that it dissenteth from the ancient Doctors, but to search more exactly the Text and co­herence of the Scriptures; and if hee finde it agree, to praise God, that hath not tyed the ex­position of the Scriptures, to the sense of the ancient Doctors. This Protestant doctrine is farre different from the Te­net of the Roman Church, insomuch that Bishop Canus his fellow Romanist was much troubled, that a prime Cardinall should oppose an Article of the Romane Creed: one while he char­geth him, that acutiùs mul­tò quam foelicius: hee expoun­ded the Scriptures in some pla­ces more wittily then happily: [Page 62] an other while he would so seeme to excuse him, that hee might be convinced by this or the like argument, To follow the Fathers in all, Canus ibid. were to condemne our owne witts, and depriue our selues of the meanes to finde out the trueth. What arguments might preuaile with the Cardinall, I cannot tell, but sure I am, his doctrine dis­agreed from the Article of the Roman faith. And Do­ctor Payna Andradius, a prin­cipall Pillar of the Trent Councell, rebuketh Canus for his rash reproouing of Caictan, and defendeth his Tenet with the same do­ctrine.Andra. def. fid Tricen lib 2. Hee teacheth, that when the Fathers seeke the li­terall sense of the Scriptures, [Page 63] they doe not alwayes find them, but giue diuers senses, one vn­like to an other. Hee profes­seth; Wee may forsake their senses all, and bring a new vn­like to theirs. He addeth fur­ther; that experience forceth vs to confesse, vnlesse wee will bee vnthankefull to most ex­cellent wits, that very many things in Moses and the Pro­phets, are in this our age ex­pounded more exactly, through the diligence of learned men, then euer they were before: And thereupon he conclu­deth, that the holy Ghost (the onely and faithfull Interpreter of the Scriptures) would haue many things to bee knowne to vs, which our Ancestors knewe not, and hath wrought by meanes vnknowne to vs, knowne [Page 64] to him, that the Fathers noted good and godly mysteries out of very many places of the Scrip­tures, whereof the right and naturall sense hath been found out by posteritie. And thus Canus against Cajetan, and Andradius against Canus, and Cajetan and Andradius both against the Trent Article, allowe the Exposition of Scripture by Scripture, and somtimes against the streme of Fathers. I proceed to the examination of more witnesses, and I call Car­dinall Bellarmine to testifie the same doctrine, that neither hee, nor his associ­ates, doe holde themselues tyed by their new Article of faith, to the Exposition of the Fathers; It is one [Page 65] thing (saith hee) to interpret the Law as a Doctor, Aliud est interpretari legem more Doctoris, a liud more Iudicis &c. Bell. de ver­bo Dei. lib. 3. cap. 10. an other thing as a Iudge: of the one is required Learning, of the other Authoritie: the opinion of the Doctors is to be followed accor­ding to reason; but the Iudges opinion is to bee followed of ne­cessitie. Saint Austen, and the Fathers in their Expositions, supplyed the places of Doctors, Scripta Pa­trū nō sunt Regulae, nec habent au­thoritatem obligandi. Idem ibid. which we may follow as wee see cause, the Pope and Councell supply the places of Iudges, with a Commission from God, and therefore they must be obserued and followed of necessitie.

Thus we haue seene three seuerall Iudges and Exposi­tors of the Scriptures. First the ancient Fathers made the Scriptures the onely Iudges, and true Interpre­ters [Page 66] of themselues, next the Trent Doctors, decreed the ancient Fathers for Inter­preters: and now at length, the later Schoolemen haue proclaimed their Popes and Councels, for their chiefest Iudges, and best Interpre­ters of the Scriptures: and These (say they) must bee fol­lowed of necessitie. Durum te­lum Neces­sitas. Pardon them, Necessitie is a deadly dart; there is no necessitie by their doctrine to obey the expositions of Fathers, which is the second Article of their Faith) but there is a necessitie to obey the au­thoritie of their late Popes and Councels, in their Ex­position, which is but mat­ter of opinion; and from hence it will follow, that [Page 67] either the Articles of the R [...]man Creed were newly created by Pope Pius the fourth, and that creation was not in his power; or that those Doctors, and Cardinals had not the oath administred vnto them; or we may iustly suspect they haue forsworne themselues. Neither was this the opi­nion of these particular men onely, but the Roman Church, (notwithstanding their solemne protestation, by which they are enioy­ned to interprete the Scrip­tures) doth in many things, by her owne confession, waue the Interpretation of the Fathers.Sanctissimos Patres quos Doctores Ecclesiae ob illorū subli­mem erudi­tionem me­ritò nominamus, quan­tūlibet spi­ritus sancti gratia prae aliis imbu­tos liqueat, in interpretatione scri­pturarū non semper ac in omnibus Ca­tholica Ec­clesia sequitur. Baron. Ann. Tom▪ 1 ad ann. 34 nu. mar. 213 It is the testi­mony of Cardinall Baroni­us, Although the most holy Fa­thers, [Page 68] whome for their great learning wee rightly terme the Doctors of the Church, were indued aboue others with the grace of Gods holy Spirit, yet the Catholique Roman Church doth not follow them alwayes, and in all things expounding of the Scriptures. Here is an other confession of a great Cardinall, (who was not ig­norant of the Articles of his faith, that (notwithstan­ding the Trent Decree, and the Popes Bull, the Church did not alwayes follow the exposition of the Fathers. Now if any shall require a reason why the Pope and Cardinalls of former ages dissent from others of these later times, in expounding of the Scriptures, Frier Stel­la, [Page 69] who doth not condemne the Exposition giuen by the ancient Doctors,Benè tamē scimus Pyg­maeos gygā ­tum hume­ris impositos plusquā ip­sos gygantes videre. Stel. enarrat in Luc. ca. 10. prote­steth, Hee knoweth full well, that Pygmeis being put vpon Gyants shoulders, doe see fur­ther then the Gyants them­selues. But Bishop Fisher doth more warily excuse it, and with plausible reasons assure vs, that Many things, Nec cuiquā obscurū est quin poste­rioribꝰ inge niis multa sint, tam ex Euangeliis quā ex scripturis &c. Roffeas Consur. Assert. Luther Art. 18. as well in Gospells, as in the rest of the Scriptures, are now more ex­quisitely discussed by later wits, and more clearely vnderstood, then they haue been heretofore; eyther by reason that the yee was not as then broken vnto the Ancients, neither did their age suffice to weigh exactly that whole sea of Scriptures, or because in this most large field of Scriptures, euen after the [Page 70] most diligent reapers, some eares will remaine to bee gathered, as yet vntouched.

How forcible motiues, these reasons may seeme to other men, I will not heere dispute: sure I am, they are vaine excuses for Romane Bishops and Cardinals, who are bound by their generall Councell, and the Popes Bull, to obey the Expositi­on of Fathers, as an Article of their faith.

But admit these opinions should bee excused for the particular Tenets of some priuate men, let vs see how faithfully the Popes & Pa­stors of these latter times haue interpreted the Scrip­tures, with the vniforme consent of Fathers.

[Page 71] Moses saith,Whit. & Durae [...]s in Camp 9. Reason pag. 269. God made man after his Image: Pope Adri­an interpreteth; therefore I­mages must bee set vp in Churches.

Saint Peter saith, Behold, De obed. & maior vnā sanctā &c. here are two swo [...]ds; Pope Bo­niface concludes: Therefore the Pope hath power ouer the spirituall, and the temporall.

Saint Matthew saith, Giue not that which is holy vnto dogs. Iewels Defence, p [...]2. Mr. Harding expounds it:Fiet vnum ouile et vnꝰ Pastor quod quidem de Christo in­telligi non potest s [...]d d [...] [...]liquo alio Ministroq [...] bres [...]t loco eius. Ioh de Par s [...]de pot. Reg & Papati c. 30. therfore it is not lawfull for the vulgar people to reade the Scriptures.

Saint Iohn saith, There shall bee one Fold, and one Sheep­herd. Iohannes de Parisijs tels vs: This place cannot bee ex­pounded of Christ, but must bee taken for some Minister ruling in his stead.

[Page 72]The Prophet Dauid saith, Thou hast put all things vnder his feet: Antoninus expounds it:Anton. in sum. part. 3. tit. 22. c. 5. Haebr. 2. Thou hast made all things subiect to the Pope, the cattle of the field, that is to say, men li­uing in the earth: the fishes of the sea, that is to say, the soules in Purgatory: the fowles of the ayre, that is to say, the soules of the blessed in heauen. And lastly, whereas our Sauiour Christ witnesseth of him­selfe:In Concil. Later. sub Leo 10. p. 671. All power is giuen to me both in heauen and earth. Ste­phen Archbishop of Patraca, applyed it to Pope Leo the tenth in the Councell of Lateran, in the audience of the Pope himselfe, who thankfully accepted it, and suffered it to bee published and printed: and as it is [Page 73] rightly obserued by lear­ned Du Moulin, Pope Inno­cent the third, in his Booke of the Mysteries of the Masse;Buckler of faith. pa. 30. the booke of sacred Ceremonies, Durants Ratio­nalls, Tolet, and Titleman, and others do most ridiculously wrest the Scriptures, altoge­ther different from their right meaning, and the Ex­positions of the Fathers: as for instance: The Scripture saith, The Rocke was Christ: therefore say they, the Al­tar must bee of stone. It is written, I am the light of the world: therfore Tapers must be set vpon the Altar: It is written: Let him kisse me with the kisses of his mouth: there­fore the Priest must kisse the Altar. It is written: Thou [Page 74] shalt see my back parts: Exod. 33.23 there­fore the Priest must turne his backe to the people. It is written:Laua me ampliús. Psal. 51. Wash mee againe, therefore the Priest must wash his hands twise. It is written,Exod. 3.5. Put off thy shooes, for this place is holy: therefore the Bishop at Masse changeth his hose and shooes. And last­ly, the Pope himselfe, at the time of his coronation, ca­steth certain copper money amongst the people, vsing the words of Peter: Siluer and gold haue I none, but that which I haue, I giue thee.

These and the like Expo­sitions doe much resemble the strict order of Monkes, who reading the words in Matthew, Districtissi­mi Mona­chorū—sim­plicitèr in­telligentes fecerunt sibi cruces lig­neas easque sibi iugiter humeru circūferentes, &c Ioh. de Polemar. orat in Cō ­cil. Basil. pag. 385. (Hee that taketh not vp his crosse and followeth me, [Page 75] is not worthy of mee) made themselues woodden cros­ses, and so carried them on their backes continually, causing all the world to laugh at them: for howso­euer they may seeme to bee the expositions of some pri­uate spirits, yet hee that makes oath in verbo Sacer­dotis, to receiue & expound the Scriptures, with the vni­forme consent of Fathers, and shall render such Expo­sitions of the Text, can bee no true Catholique:Hieron. 24. q 3. cap. Haeresis. For whosoeuer doeth otherwise vn­derstand the Scripture (saith Hierome) then the sense of the holy Ghost (who is the Penman of the Scripture) requires, al­though hee hath not departed from the Church, yet hee may [Page 76] bee tearmed an heretique. But (as the Fryar said wittily in his Sermon) the trueth which hee preached, was like holy water, which euery one called for apace, yet when the Sexton cast it on them, they let it fall on their backs: in like manner the Romanists seemingly call for the Scriptures, they commonly vaunt that they expound and receiue them according to the vniforme consent of Fathers; but (as Vincentius Lyrinensis said of the heretiques of his time,) When they shall begin not onely to vtter those sayings, Vbi caeperūt illas voces nō iam pro­ferre sede­tiam expo­nere non ad &c. Vincēt. Lyrin. c. 36. but also to expound them, then the bit­ternesse, then the sowernesse and madnesse is perceiued; then a new deuised poyson will be brea­thed [Page 77] out, then are prophane No­uelties disclosed, then may you see the bounds of the ancient Fathers to bee remooued, the Catholique Faith to bee then butchered, and the doctrine of the Church torne in pie­ces.

Pope Pius the fourth who first published the Articles of the Creed, was not ig­norant, that the Scriptures must be farre fetched, and hardly strayned, to make them speake for the Trent doctrine: hee well vnder­stood, that it was too gene­rall and strict a tye vpon e­uery Masse Priest, to receiue and interpret the Scriptures with the vniforme consent of Fathers, (knowing well, that many Masse Priestes [Page 78] were vtterly ignorant of the Fathers,) and therefore to qualifie the rigour of that oath, adioyned these words to the aforesaid Article;Artic. 2. Also that sacred Scripture, ac­cording to that sense which the Mother Church hath holden, (whose right is to iudge of the true sense and interpretati­on of holy Scripture) I doe ad­mit: so that by the latter part of the Article, they allow the Fathers to bee in­terpreters of the Scriptures; and by the first part, they make themselues sole inter­preters of the Fathers; to which addition an ignorant Priest will sweare, with a mentall reseruation, that he doeth not receiue nor ex­pound the Scripture, but [Page 79] with the vniforme consent of Fathers, that is, accor­ding to the sense and iudg­ment of the Roman church: for it is not to bee doubted, but the Church will allow of that sense which is most agreeable to that doctrine, and of that interpretation, (although it bee farre diffe­rent from the Ancients,) which is most consonant to their Religion, and the ra­ther I incline to this opini­on; for that Cardinall Hosi­us doth protest it for a vni­versall and Catholike do­ctrine of his Church.Si quis habet interpreta­tionē Eccle­sia Romana de loco ali­quo Scriptu­ra, etiamsi nec sciat nec intelli­gat an & quomodo cū Scriptura verbis con­ueniat, ta­men habet ipsissimum verbū Dei. Hos. de ex­presso verb. Dei. If a man haue the Interpretation of the Church of Rome, of any place of Scripture, hee hath the very words of God, though he neither know nor vnderstand, [Page 80] whether and how it agreeth with the words of Scripture. Now if it happen that those which are better in­structed, by comparing of Scriptures and Fathers, doe make a doubt of some place of Scripture, which the Church teacheth different from the Fathers, Cardinall Cusanus, by way of preuen­tion, giues him to vn­derstand,Non est mi­rū si praxis Ecclesiae vno tempore in­terpretetur Scripturam vno modo et alio tēpore alio modo, nā intellectꝰ currit cum praxi, intel­lectus enim qui cū praxi cōcurrit est spiritus vi­nificans, se­quuntur er­go scripturae ecclesiam et non è con­uerso. Nich. Cusan. ad Bohem. E­pist. 7. that there is Fi­des Temporum, a faith that followeth the time: Neither is it any maruell (saith hee) though the practise of the Church expound the Scripture at one time one way, and at an other time another way, for the vnderstanding or sense of the Scripture runneth with the practise, and that sense so a­greeing [Page 81] with the practise, is the quickening Spirit; and there­fore the Scriptures follow the Church, but contrariwise the Church followeth not the Scrip­tures. This learned Roma­nist tells vs, it is no wonder that the Scripture is at di­uers times diuersly expoun­ded: hee tells vs, the Scrip­ture attends the Churches pleasure: and lastly, which is most true, hee professeth the Romish Church fol­loweth not the Scripture, but the times.

That this Cardinall spea­keth truth, I think no Prote­stant doth make a question: but that you may be witnes also of the practise of these times, you shall obserue how fitly these men haue [Page 82] applyed the Scripture to their Church: whereas it is said to Peter in a vision, Arise, In voto Ba­ronij contrà Venetos. kill and eate: Cardi­nall Baronius being Inter­preter, will tell you: The Pope is Peter, and the Venetians are the meate which must bee killed and deuoured. In like manner, whereas Saint Paul saith, Haereticum deuitâ, A­uoyd an heretique: the sillie Fryar applies it to times and persons with this Ex­position:Erasm. En­com. Moriae Haereticum de-vitâ tolle: kill the heretique, mea­ning the Protestant: and in this manner according to the times, the sense runneth with the practise; or at leastwise I am sure, this pra­ctise runneth with these times.

[Page 83]Thus then you haue Fi­des Ecclesia, an Exposition of Scriptures according to the Article of the Romish Creed, and Fides temp [...]rum, an Exposition sutable to the times, and their owne do­ctrine. If therefore we ap­peale to Scriptures, they ac­count them dumbe Iudges, without the Exposition of their Church: if we require an Exposition with the consent of Fathers, they tell vs we must admit that sense which the Church hol­deth, whose right is to iudge of the true sense of Scrip­tures: If wee shew them, that their Expositions are senselesse, and disagreeing from the Ancients; they tell vs the Scriptures may re­ceiue [Page 84] different Expositions according to the times. And thus they make the Scrip­tures sound like Bells, ac­cording to their fancies, and violate their oath with a Saluo Iure, sauing a right to the sense and meaning of their owne Church. This way therefore is Via Deuia, a Wandring and By-way.

It resteth in the last and chiefest place, to obserue the difference bewixt the Church of Rome and vs, touching the intire Canon of Scriptures (for without doubt this is the onely and infallible rule of faith,) and there is a curse denounced by God himselfe against all those that adde to his word, Deut. 4.2. Reu. 22.18. or diminish ought from it. It shall [Page 85] appeare therefore by many pregnant and infallible te­stimonies of our aduersaries themselues, that the Canon of Scripture which we pro­fesse and beleeue, was the same which was taught and declared by Christ and his Apostles in the first age; the same which was published, & generally receiued by the ancient Fathers in succee­ding ages; the same which continued in the bosome of the Romane Church in all ages, till the dayes of Lu­ther.

SECT. V. The intire Canon of Scriptures which wee professe (without the Apocryphall additions) is confirmed by pregnant testi­monies in all ages, and most of them acknowledged by the Romanists themselues.

IT was the complaint of Campian the Iesuite, that the ancient Canon of Scripture was altered at the comming of Luther; and thereupon as a man inraged against the Lutherans, Camp. Rat. 1. hee makes this open out-crie: What incensed Luthers whelps, to put out of the true Canon of Scripture, Tobias, Ecclesiasti­cus, [Page 87] and the two bookes of Mac­cabees? Desperation: for by these heauenly oracles, they are expressely conuinced, as often as they dispute against the defence of Angels, as often as they di­spute against Freewill, as often as they dispute against Praying for the dead, as often as they dispute against Praying to the Saints. Surely, if this Ro­manist had beene as reall in his proofes, as he was vaine glorious in his speeches, he had gone beyond all the Romish Proselytes of our age: for neuer man made greater flourishes with poo­rer proofes: for it shall ap­peare, that wee haue publi­shed no other Canon of Scripture, then Christ and his Apostles taught, and re­ceiued [Page 88] no other then the ancient Fathers declared to be diuinely Canonicall (and those onely Canonicall) none other then the learned Doctors and Professors, in­tirely preserued in the bo­some of the Roman Church in all ages: so that if any curse be denounced against vs, for renouncing doctrines of faith, deduced from A­pocryphall Scriptures, I say it shall appeare by the same Decree, they haue layd an Anath [...]ma vpon Christ and his Apostles, and haue cur­sed the ancient Fathers, and the principall members of their owne Church.

In the first age, to Ann. 100.

First then wee must ob­serue,Rom. 3.2. Factique sunt (Iudaei) depositarii et custodes Eloquiorū Dei. Tolet. coment. in Rom. 3.2. according to Saint Pauls testimonie: Vnto the Iewes were committed the Ora­cles of God: these Oracles, as Gods pledges, were preserued by them, (saith Cardinall Tolet) and according to the num­ber of the Hebrew letters, they were diuided into two and twentie Bookes, which is the Canon of Scripture now taught and receiued by the reformed Churches. The other Bookes, (which wee terme Apocryphall) were neuer receiued of the Iewes for Canonicall,Bell de ver­bo Dei lib. 1. cap. 10. as Bellar­mine himselfe doth testifie. This Canon of the Iewes [Page 90] was so true and perfect at Christs comming, that nei­ther Christ, nor any of his Apostles complained of it: nay more, they cited many things out of the Canonicall Bookes of Scripture, for proofe of their doctrine, with this speciall character, As it is written: when as in all the Gospell of Christ, there is not so much as one authoritie cited by Christ or his Apostles, out of the Bookes which we terme A­pocryphall. This Canon of the Iewes, as it was intirely preserued by them, and is now receiued by vs, so it is likewise warranted by Christ himselfe: for Saint Luke tells vs, that our Saui­our after his Resurrection, [Page 91] beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, Luk. 24.27. expounded in all the Scriptures the things concer­ning himselfe; and what hee meant by all the Scriptures, hee afterwards expounds in the 44. verse of the same chapter:Ibid. ver. 44. These are the words which I speake vnto you, which were written in the Law of Mo­ses, and in the Prophets, and in the Psalmes concerning mee; and hee giues the reason in Saint Luke; Luk. 24.44. That all things must bee fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses, and in the Prophets, and in the Psalmes concerning me. Here then is the true Canon of Scripture deliuered, and rightly diuided by Christ himselfe, into three seuerall rankes; into the Law, the [Page 92] Prophets, and the Psalmes, vn­der all or any of which rankes the Books which we terme Apocryphall, neither are, nor euer were contei­ned. And this was the con­stant Tenet of the Primi­tiue Church, touching the true Canon of the Scrip­tures in the first Age.

In the second Age, An. 100. to 200.

Euseb. hist. Eccles. li. 4 c. 25. Melito Bishop of Sardis] In an Epistle to Onesimus, numbreth the Bookes of the Old Testament, where­in hee maketh no mention of Iudith, Tobit, Ecclesiasti­cus, nor the Maccabees: and this is likewise confessed by Bellarmine: Bell de ver­bo Dei. li. 1. cap. 20. Many Anci­ents [Page 93] (saith he) as namely Me­lito, did follow the Hebrew Ca­non of the Iewes. Cum diligē ­ter de omni­bus explora­uerat, omni inuestigati­one compe­rit hos li­bros esse à veteris Te­stamēti Ca­none retici­endos. Eus. li. 4. ca. 26. And Euse­bius more plainely tells vs, that when hee had made dili­gent search of all the Bookes of Scripture, hee accounted those bookes (which wee terme Apo­cryphall) to bee reiected from the Canon.

In the third Age. An. 200. to 300.

Origen] in his Expositi­on vpon the first Psalme, saith; We may not be ignorant, there are two and twentie books of the Old Testament after the Hebrewes, which is the number of the letters among them. This is likewise witnessed by Eusebius, that as Origen [Page 94] receiued the Canon of the Iewes, Euseb. lib. 6 cap. 18. so likewise he reiected those sixe bookes which wee terme Apo­cryphall with the Iewes.

In the fourth Age, An. 300. to 400.

Hilary Bishop of Poictiers] tells vs, The Law of the Olde Testament is contained in two and twentie bookes,In viginti duos libros lex Testa­mēti veteris deputetur, vt cum li­terarū nu­mero conue­nirent: qui ita secundū Traditiones veterū de­p [...]tantur: vt Mosi sint libri quin (que) Iesu Naue sextus, Iu­dicum & Ruth septi­mus, &c. Hilar. in Prolog. in Psal expla­nationem. according to the number of the Hebrew letters. And there he tells vs further, how they are disposed, and put in order according to the tradition of the Ancients, (in this manner) There are fiue bookes of Moses, Iosuah is the sixt, the Iudges and Ruth the seuenth, the first and second of Kings the eight, the third and fourth of Kings the ninth, [Page 95] the two bookes of Chronicles the tenth, Esdras the eleuenth, Psalmes the twelfth, Solomons Prouerbes, Ecclesiastes, Canti­cles, 13. 14. 15. the twel [...]e Prophets the sixteenth, Esay, Ieremy with the Lamentations, Daniel, Ezechiel, Iob and He­ster, doe make vp the number of 22. bookes.

Cyril of Hierusalem] giues the like lesson to the Reader. Veteris Te­stamenti li­bros medi­tare duos et viginti. Tu ita (que) cum sis filius Ec­clesia non transgredi eris illius terminos. Cyril. Ca­tech. 4. Peruse the two and twen­tie bookes, but meddle not with the Apocrypha; meditate dili­gently vpon those Scriptures, which the Church doth confi­dently reade, and vse no o­ther.

Athanasius] tells vs, Sunt itaque Canonici veteris Testa­mentilibri 22. literis Hebraicis numero pa­res, praetèr istos autem sunt adhuc alii etusdem veteris in­strumenti libri nō sunt Canonici, qui Cate­chumenis tantum le­guntur Sa­pientia So­lomonis &c. Athanas in Synops Nec ab hâc sententia alienus fuit Damasce­nꝰ et Atha­nasius, quos Theologi multi secuti sunt. Canus loc. Theol. lib. 2. ca. 10. Euse. Chro. li. 2. ex Hier. versione. Eusebio at (que) reliquis licuit ali­quando dubitare. Can. lib. 2. ca. 10. The Christians had at that time a definite number of bookes com­prehended in a Canon, and of [Page 96] that Canon touching the Olde Testament, they were twentie two bookes, equall to the num­ber of the Hebrew letters: and as touching the Apocryphall books, as namely, the book of Wisedome, Maccabees, and the rest, libri non sunt Cano­nici; they are read onely to the Catechumens, but are not Ca­nonicall. This testimony is so true, that Canus confesseth, hee was not onely of our opi­nion, but also drew many Di­uines after him to this opinion.

Eusebius Bishop of Caesa­rea] saith; The Hebrew Hi­storie of the Maccabees, reckons from thence, the raigne of the Grecians; but those bookes are not receiued among the diuine [Page 97] Scriptures. This Authour is likewise acknowledged in this Tenet to be ours. Haec sūt quae Patres in­tra Canonē concluserūt, ex quibus fi­dei nostrae assertiones constare vo­lueruut, sci­endū tamen est, qd et alii libri sūt qui nō sunt Ca­nonici, sed Ecclesiastici à maioribus appellati sūt vt sapienti­a Solomonis et alia Sapi­entia quae dicitur filii Syrach, eiusdem ordinis est liber To­biae, et Iu­dith, et Ma­chabaeorum libri—qua omnia legi quidē in Ec­clesiis voluerunt, nō ta­mē proferri ad authori­tatem ex his fidei confir­mandam. Ruff. siue Cypt. in ex­plic. Symb. Bell. de ver­bo Dei lib. 1. cap. 20. Quod verò Ruffinꝰ asse­rit ex patrū Traditione eos libros à canone reii­ciendos pace Lectoris di­ctum sit, pa­trū traditi­ones igno­rauit. Can. lib. 2. c. 11. Sicut Iu­dith et To­biae, & Ma­cabaeorū li­bros legit Ecclesia, sed eos inter Canonicas scri­pturas non recipit; sic et haec duo vo­lumina sa­pientia Solo­monis et Sy­rach legit ad adifica­tionē plebis non autho­ritatē dog­matum cō ­firmandum. In Praefat. lib Solom. Admitto Hieronymū ea fuisse opinione quia nondū generale Cō ciliū de his libris ali­quid statue­rat, &c. Bell de ver­bo Dei lib. 1. cap. 10. Ipso ergo sa­cra Codicis [...] pandam tibi, Omnes libellos &c. vltimū no­men duplex cui est An­gelum Ma­lachiam. Greg. Naz. Car. Iamb. ad Seleucū Iamb. 3. De quibꝰ ta­men nunc dubitare ne­fa [...] est, ante­quam autē ab Ecclesiâ cōmuni cō ­sensu recep­ti essent, ni­hil piaculi fuit eos in Canonicorū numerū ac sedē mini­mè admit­tere. Iacob. Bill. in Iam. 3. Nazian. Non opor­tet libros qui sunt extrà Cano­nem legere nisi solos Ca­nonicos No­ui et Veteris Testamenti Concil. La­od. Can. 59.

Ruffinus] as some say Cy­prian, in reciting the Canon of the Scripture, testifies the like in this age; These be the bookes which our Fathers haue included within the Canon, out of which they would haue the assertions of our faith to ap­peare: but yet wee must know, that there bee also other bookes, which are not Canonicall, but are called of our Ancestors, Ec­clesiasticall; as is the Wisedome of Solomon, Ecclesiasticus, To­bias, Iudith, and the bookes of Maccabees: all which they will indeed haue to bee read in the Church, but not to bee alledged for confirmation of faith. Bel­larmine confesseth (with vs) [Page 98] that Ruffinus did follow the Hebrewe Canon: but his fellow Canus is not conten­ted with such a moderate confession, but returnes this answere, Although Ruffinus did affirme, that the bookes of Maccabees were to bee reje­cted by the tradition of the Fa­thers, yet by the Readers leaue hee was ignorant of that Tra­dition.

Saint Hierome] is our wit­nesse; As the Church readeth Iudith, Tobias, and the Mac­cabees, but receiueth them not for Canonicall Scriptures: so these two bookes (namely) the Wisedome of Solomon, and Iesus the sonne of Syrach, doth the Church reade for the edificati­on of the people, not to confirme thereby the authoritie of any [Page 99] doctrine in the Church. This is likewise confessed by Bel­larmine, I admit (saith hee) that Hierome was of that opi­nion, because as yet in those dayes a generall Councell had decreed nothing touching those bookes, except the booke of Iu­dith, which Hierom afterwards receiued.

Gregory Nazianzen] wri­ting to Seleucus, promiseth him, that he will shew him a catalogue of the Canoni­call bookes, and according­ly beginning from Genesis, cites the bookes in order to Malachie, the last of the Pro­phets. This authoritie in our behalfe is likewise con­fessed by Iacobus Billius, a Romanist in his Commen­tary vpon those verses, but [Page 100] hee excuseth him in this manner, That hee omitted other bookes, as namely Iudith, the Maccabees, &c. of which notwithstanding to make a doubt in these dayes, would bee accounted a wicked thing: but before they were generally re­ceiued of the Church, it was no sinne not to admit them a­mongst the number of Canoni­call Scriptures.

The Councell of Laodicea] Wee ought to reade onely the bookes of the Old and New Te­stament: and in that 59. Ca­non, the Councell recites onely those Canonicall Bookes of Scripture which we allowe; and the Canons of this Councell are con­firmed by the sixt Generall Councell in Trullo, and Binius [Page 101] himselfe confesseth, that the booke of Iudith, by the autho­ritie of this Councell, is rejected amongst the Apocrypha. And this was the constant opi­nion of the Primitiue Church, Can. 2. Liber Iu­dith autho­ritate huius Prouincia­lis Concilii inter Apocrhyphos reiicitur. Binius in Concil. Rom. sub Syluest. Not. touching the in­tire rule of Scripture in the fourth Age.

In the fifth Age, An. 400. to 500.

Epiphanius] after he had reckoned vp the Canon of two and twentie Bookes,Vtiles qui­dem sunt et cōmodi sed in numerū receptorum non refe­rūtur qua­re neque in Aaron, ne (que) in Testa­menti Ar­cam repositi sunt. Epiph. li. de Mens. & Ponder. censureth the Bookes of Wisedome, and Ecclesiasticus, in these words: They are fit and profitable, but not reckoned amongst those bookes which are [Page 102] receiued by our Church, and therefore were neither layd vp with Aaron, nor in the Arke of the new Testament.

In Macha­baeorū libris etsi aliquid Mirabilium numero in­serendū conveniens fu­isse ordini inueniatur, de hâc tamē nullá curâ fatigabi­mur quiae tantū agere proposuimus vt de Diui­ni Canonis Mirabilibus exiguā ex­positionem tāgeremus. Aug. de Mi­rab. sacrae Scrip. l. 2. c. 34. Has suppu­tatio non in Scripturis sanctis quae appellantur Canonica, sed in aliis inuenitur in quibꝰ sunt et Macha­baeorū libri. De civ. Dei l. 18. c. 36. Saint Austen] Although there may something bee found in the books of Maccabees meet for this order of writing, and worthy to bee ioyned with the number of Miracles, yet we will not we [...]ry our selues with any care thereof, for that we haue intended onely to touch a short rehearsall of the miracles con­teined in the diuine Canon; And for a further explana­tion of the true Canon, dif­ferent from the Apocry­phall Scriptures, he tells vs, This reckoning is not found in the holy Scriptures that are called Canonicall, but in cer­taine other bookes, amongst [Page 103] which are the bookes of the Maccabees. And as concer­ning the authoritie of these bookes, when it was obie­cted against him, that Razis killed himselfe, and there­fore it was lawfull by the Scripture for a man to kill himselfe: amongst other answeres hee returnes this for one; The Iewes doe not esteeme this Scripture called the Maccabees, in such sort,Scriptura quae appell [...] tur Macha­baorum re­cepta est ab Ecclesia non in [...]tilitè [...] si sobrie lega­tur vel au­diatur ma­ximè prop­ter illos Machabaeos qui pro Dei le­ge indigna perpess. sunt. Aug. contra Se­cundū Ep. Gaud. li. 2. c. 23. as the Law, the Prophets, and the Psalmes, to which Christ giueth testimony, as to them that beare that witnesse of him, saying, It behoued that all these things should be fulfilled that are writ­ten of mee in the Law, the Pro­phets, and the Psalmes: but it is receiued of the Church not vnprofitably, so that it bee read [Page 104] and heard with sobrietie, espe­cially because of these Macca­bees, which indured grieuous persecutions for the Lawe of God.

In the sixth Age, An. 500. to 600.

Quarehi li­bri nō inter Canonicas Scripturas currunt. M. Quoniam apud Haebre­os quo (que) su­per hac dif­ferentia re­cipiebantur sicut Hier. cateri (que) te­stātur. Iun. de part. di­uinae legis lib. 1. cap. 3. Sūtpratereà alii quidem libri vt Sa­pientia Solo monis, liber Iesu filii Sy­rach, et lib. Iudith et Tobiae, et libri Machabaeor­qui legūtur quidē sed nō scribūtur in canone. I­sid. Praenot. Elucid. de script. & Scripturis sac. c. 6 & 7.Iunilius Bishop of Africa] excludeth from the Cano­nicall bookes, Iudith, the Maccabees, and the booke of Wisedome: and concerning them, he puts this question, and resolues it: Why are not these books inserted amongst the Canonicall Scriptures? Because (saith he) the Iewes did make a difference of them, as S. Hierom and others doe testifie.

Isidore] is a witnes, that our doctrine was professed in [Page 105] the church in his daies: there are other bookes, as namely, the Wisdom of Solomon, the book of Iesus the son of Syrach, the books of Iudith, and Tobias, and the Maccabees, which are read, but not written in the Canon.

In the seuenth Age, An. 600. to 700.

Gregory the Great] did ac­count the bookes of Macca­bees Apocryphall:De qua re non inordi­nate agi­mus si ex li­bris licet nō Canonicis, sed tamē ad aedificationē ecclesiae edi­tis testimo­nium profe­rimus. In Iob. lib. 19. cap. 13. B. Gregoriꝰ authoritate vt opinor Hier motu [...] videtur cō ­cedere illos non esse Ca­nonicos cum tamen de tis producat testimonia. Cathat. o­pusc. de lib. Canonicis. Secundum Greg. in Mo­ralibus liber Iudith, Tob. et Machabe­orū, Ecclas. at (que) lib. Sa­pientiae non sūt recipiēdi ad cōfirmā ­dū aliquid de fide. Occ. Dial. part 3 tract. 1. l. 3. c. 16. Wee doe not amisse (saith hee) if wee pro­duce a testimony out of the bookes of Maccabees, though not Canonicall, yet published for the instruction of the Church. This is witnessed also by Catharinus their own Schole­man: Gregory (saith hee) led as I conceiue, by the authoritie [Page 106] of Saint Hierome, did seeme to graunt; that those bookes were not Canonicall, although hee produced testimonies out of them. But learned Occham more plainely declares his opinion touching Gregorie; According to Gregories do­ctrine (saith hee) the booke of Iudith, Tobias, the Maccabees, Ecclesiasticus, and the booke of Wisedome, are not to bee recei­ued for the confirmation of any doctrine of faith.

In the eighth Age, An. 700. to 800.

Damascene.] who was ca­nonized a Saint, for his ser­uice at the 2.d. Councell of Nice, tells vs, it is operae pre­ti [...]m, &c worth our paines, to [Page 107] search and know, [...]. Da­masc. Orth. fid. l. 4. c. 18. that there are two and twentie bookes of Cano­nicall Scripture; and as touch­ing the Apocryphall, hee termes them, [...], they are full of vertuous instructions, but are not numbred amongst the Prophets, neither were they layd vp in the Arke.Nec ab hâc sententia alienus fuit Damascenꝰ quos Theo­logi multi secuti sunt. Canus loc. Theol. lib. 2. cap. 10. This Author is confessed to bee ours in this poynt: inso­much as Canus professeth, that Damascene and Athana­sius were of his opinion, and were followed in this by many Diuines.

In the ninth Age, An. 800 to 900.

Nicephorus, Patriarch of Constantinople] giues vs to vnderstand, [...] Niceph. Pa­tr. C.P. Ca­non Script. in operibus Pithei. In libro Iesu filii Syrach hac praefata sentētia le­gitur quē librū B. Hier. at (que) Isidorꝰ inter Apo­chry. (id est) dubias scri­pturas de­putatū esse ab (que) dubita tione testā ­tur. Qui e­tiā liber non tēpore Pro­phetarū sed sacerdotum sub Simone Pont. Max. regnāte Pto lemao Euer­gete cōscrip­tus est. Al [...]. aduers. Elip. l. 1. col. 941 that the bookes of [Page 108] the Old Testament were twenty and two. And in treating of the Apocryphall bookes, hee mentioneth in particular, the books of Maccabees, the Wisdome of Solomon, Ester, Iu­dith, Susanna, Tobit.

Alcuinus, Abbot of Saint Martins at Tours in France,] writing against Elipantus, Bishop of Tolledo, tells him, that hee vrged authorities out of the booke of Iesus the sonne of Syrach: but (saith hee) Saint Hierome did testifie, that without question it was to bee reputed amongst the Apocry­phall and doubtfull bookes; and withall addeth: This booke was not written in the time of the Prophets, but vnder the [...]igne of Ptolomey, and Simon the high Priest.

In the tenth Age, An 900. to 1000.

Aelfrick Abb [...]t of Malms­bury] in his Saxon treatie of the old Testament, Aelfrick of the old Te­stament. pa. 17. 22. 23. tells vs, There are two bookes more placed with Solomons workes, as if he had made them, which for likenesse of stile, and profi­table vse, haue gone for his, but Iesus the sonne of Syrach com­posed them: one is called Li­ber Sapientiae, the booke of Wisedome; and the other Ec­clesiasticus, very large bookes, and read in the Church of long custome, for much good instru­ction: amongst these bookes the Church hath accustomed to place two other, tending to the glory of God, and intituled, Maccabeorum, I haue tur­ned [Page 110] them into English, and so reade them you may if you please, for your owne instru­ction.

In the eleuenth Age, An. 1000. to 1100.

Petrus Cluniacensis] after the recitall of the Canoni­call bookes, saith, There are besides the authenticall bookes, sixe others not to be rejected, as namely, Iudith, Tobias, Wise­dome, Ecclesiasticus, and the two bookes of Maccabees, which though they attaine not to the high dignitie of the former, yet they are receiued of the Church,De author. veter. Test. Epist. contr Petro Bu­s [...]nos. as containing necessary and pro­fitable doctrine.

In the twelfth Age,Omnes ergo fiunt nume­ro 22, sunt praterea a­lit quidē li­bri vt Sapi­entia Solo [...] ­monis, liber Iesu filis Syrach, et liber Iudith, et Tob. et libri Machab qui legūturqui dem, sed non scribuntur in Canone. Hugo de S. Vict. Praeno. Elucid de scrip. et scrip sacris. ca. 6. & cap 7. Omnes sunt numero 22 sūt pratereà et alii libri vt sapientia &c. Rich. Except li. 2. cap. 9. An. 1100. to 1200.

Hugo de Sancto Victore] All the Canonicall bookes of the Olde Testament, are twentie two: there are other bookes also, (as namely) the Wisedome of Solomon, the booke of Iesus the sonne of Syrach, the bookes of Iudith, Tobias, and the Mac­cabees, which are read, but not written in the Canon.

Richardus de S. Victore] was liuing at this time, and hath the same words, All the bookes are twenty two: there are other bookes also, (as name­ly) the booke of Wisedome and Maccabees, and which are read in the Church, but not written in the Canon.

In the thirteenth Age, An. 1200. to 1300.

Hugo Cardinalis] speak­ing of the bookes reiected by vs,Hugo in Prologum Galeatum. saith, These bookes are not receiued by the Church for proofe of doctrine, but for infor­mation of manners. And in his Preface to Tobias (hee saith) they are not accounted amongst the Canonicall Scrip­tures. Prolog. in Tobiam.

Bonauenture] in his Pre­face before the Exposition of the Psalter, sheweth which are the Canonicall bookes of Scripture: and passing by the bookes of the New Testament, hee reckoneth all those, and those onely that Hierome doth, sorting them into their seuerall [Page 113] rankes and orders as the Hebrewes doe.

In the fourteenth Age, An. 1300. to 1400.

Gul. Occham] saith, Ac­cording to Hierome in his Pro­logue before the booke of Pro­verbs; and Gregory in his Mo­ralls, the bookes of Iudith, To­bias, and the Maccabees, Eccle­siasticus, and the booke of Wis­dome, are not to bee receiued for confirmation of any matter of faith:Occham Dial. part. 3 Pract. 1. li. 3. cap. 16. so also it readeth those two volumes of Ecclesia­sticus, and Wisedome, for the edification of the people, but not for confirmation of poynts of faith and religion.Postquam auxiliante Deo scripsi super libros sacrae scrip­turae Cano­nicos—alios intēdo scri­bere qui non sunt de Ca­none, scil. li­ber Sapien­tiae, Ecclus. Iudith, To­bias, et libri Machabao­rum. In Praefat. To­biae.

Nicholas Lyra] After that (by the assistance of God) I haue [Page 114] handled the Canonicall bookes of Scripture, beginning from Genesis, and proceeding to the end of the Apocalypse; being confident of the same ayde and assistance, I purpose to write of those bookes, which are not in the Canon, as namely the booke of Wisedome, Ecclesiasticus, Iudith, Tobias, and the bookes of Maccabees. This Author is so truely ours in this poynt, Nicholas Lyra in pra­fatione in librū Tobia dicit, neque eum, neque Iudith, ne (que) Machabao­rum, neque Sapientiae, ne (que) Eccle­siasticū, ne­que Baruch ne (que) vltimos Esdrae in Canone ha­beri, recipi tamen in Ecclesia, le­gi (que) ad mo­res informandos, quanquaem eorum authoritas ad pro­banda ea quae in contentionem veniunt minus idonea reputetur. Ioh. Fr. Pic. Mirand. Theorem. 5. that Picus Mirandula professeth, Lyra saith, Nei­ther the bookes of Tobit, nor Iudith, nor the Maccabees, nor Wisedome, nor Ecclesiasticus, nor Baruch, nor the last bookes of Esdras, are to bee reckoned in the Canon; but notwithstan­ding they are receiued of the Church, and are read for recti­fying of manners, although [Page 115] their authoritie is of lesse ac­count for proofe of those things which are in controuersie.

In the fifteenth Age, An. 1400. to 1500.

Alphonsus Tostatus] giues his voyce with the refor­med Churches. Quanquam isti libri ab Ecclesia recipiantur nullius au­thóritatis solidae sunt, ideò ad con­firmandū et probandū ea quae in dubi­um vene­rint inuti­les sunt &c Tost. praef. in lib. Pa­ralip. q. 2. Deni (que) liber iste non est de Canone id est inter Scripturas Canonicas cōputandus, quamuis de eius veritate non dubi­tatur. Dy­onis. Carth. prolog. in Ecclesiast. Perer. in Dan. lib. 16. p. 742. Although (saith hee) the bookes (in question) bee receiued of the Church, yet are they not of any solid authoritie; and therefore they are improfitable to prooue, and confirme those things which are called in question, according to Saint Hierom.

Dionysius Carthusianus] in writing vpon Ecclesiasticus, [Page 116] (saith) That booke is not of the Canon, (that is) amongst the Canonicall Scriptures, although there bee no doubt made of the trueth of that booke. This is confessed likewise by our aduersaries: Dyonisius Car­thusianus, and Lyra, doe not denie the Historie of Susanna to bee true, but they denie the bookes of Iudith, Tobit, and the Maccabees do appertaine to the canonicall Scriptures.

Ita 22 volu­mina suppu­tātur quibꝰ quasi literis et exordiis in Dei do­ctrina &c. Wald. doct. fidei lib 2. art. 2. circa initium. Anton. par. 3. tit 18. ca. 6. juxt. finē.Thomas Waldensis] cites out of Hierome, the Canon of the olde Testament in these words, As there are twentie two letters, by which we write in Hebrew all that wee speake, so there are accounted twentie two bookes, by which as letters, wee are instructed in the doctrine of God; and with­all [Page 117] addeth, Dicit Tho­mas 2.2. Nichol de Lyra super Tobiam, scil. isti non sunt tanta authorita­tis quòd ex dictis eorum posset effica­citer argu­mentari, in his quae sunt fidei, sicut ex aliis libris sacrae scrip­turae, vndè fortè habent authoritatē talem qualē habent dicta sanctorum Doctorum approbato ab Ecc [...]esia. that the whole Canonicall Scripture is contei­ned in the two and twentie bookes.

Antoninus] tells vs, that Aquinas, and Nicholas de Ly­ra say, the Apocryphall bookes reiected by the Hebrewes, are not of that authoritie that a man may argue from their say­ings as efficaciously touching poynts of faith, as from other writings of the sacred Scrip­tures; and therefore happily they haue such authoritie as the sayings of holy Fathers, which are approued by the Church, but not as the Canonical Scrip­tures themselues.

In the sixteenth Age, An. 1500. to 1600.

Reliqui, viz. Iudith, Tobiae, Ma­chabeorū li­bri, cū Sapi­entia et Ec­clesiastico à Diuo Hier. inter Apo­crypha locā ­tur. Nec turberis (Nouitie) si alicubi reperias libros istos inter Canonicos supputari vel in sacris Cōciliis, vel in sacris do­ctoribus Nā ad Hierony­mi lineam reducenda sunt, tāver­ba Concilio­rum quam Doctorū, sic vt libri isti non sint Ca­nonici, id est regulares ad firmand [...]m ea quae sunt fidei, possunt tamen dici Canonici, id est regulares ad aedifi­cationē Fi­deliū. Caiet. in finecom. Hist. veter. Testament. Cardinall Cajetan] tells vs, The bookes in question be­twixt vs (as namely) Iudith, Tobit, the Maccabees, the books of Wisedome, and Ecclesiasti­cus, are reckoned by Hierome amongst the Apocryphall books; neither be thou troubled, (saith hee) O Nouice, if elsewhere you finde these bookes reckoned amongst the Canonicall Scrip­tures, both by sacred Councells, or by the holy Doctors of the Church, for they are to bee re­duced to the rule of Hierome, that those bookes may not bee accounted Canonicall, that is, to regulate our faith, but they may bee termed Canonicall for the edification of the faithfull. [Page 119] This testimony of Cajetan, against the Tenet of the Church of Rome, fully a­grees with vs, in so much that Ambrosius Catharinus, a Romanist professeth, that Cajetan in this poynt com­mitted almost as many sinnes as hee deliuered words. And his fellow Canus protesteth, that hee is ashamed, that a man otherwise ingenious and lear­ned, and a godly pillar of their Church,In huius ve­ro confirmatione argu­menti Am­brosius Ca­th [...]rinus, Caietanum affirmat tot peccata ad­misisse, quot verba penè effudit. Can lib. 2. cap. 11. should so much dege­nerate from the learned profes­sors of the Romane Faith, that when all Writers agree, that the name of Canonicall is sacred and diuine, onely Cajetan should say the Bishops and Councels did otherwise vnderstand it. And for a conclusion, Arias Montanus, in his Edition of [Page 120] the Bible, Accesserunt et huic Edi­tioni libri Graecè scrip­ti quos Ec­clesia Orthodoxa Hebra­orum Cano­nem secuta inte Apo­chryphos re­cēset. Arias Mon. in the Frontispice of the Bi­ble Edit. Antwerp. ex Offic. Plant. Ann. 1584. tells vs, there are added to that Edition bookes writen in Greeke, (as namely, Toby, Iudith, Hester, the Booke of Wisedome, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, the Additions to Da­niel, and the two bookes of Maccabees) the which bookes (saieth hee) the Orthodoxe Church following the Hebrew Canon, reckons amongst the A­pocrypha. And thus by our aduersaries owne confessi­ons, the true and Orthodox Church did reiect those A­pocryphall bookes which our Church refuseth, which the Trent Councell allowes at this day for Canonicall. And thus briefly I haue produced a Catalogue of ancient Fathers, and mo­derne Writers in the Ro­mane [Page 121] Church, who haue witnessed with vs the same Canon of Scripture which wee professe at this day, whereby I haue giuen you a taste of that challenge, (which God willing I pur­pose heereafter to make good in the principal points of our Religion) that our Church and doctrine hath continued Visible in all a­ges, euen to the dayes of Luther.

SECT. VI. Our Aduersaries pretences from the authorities of Fathers, and Councels, to prooue the Apocryphall bookes Canoni­call, answered.

THe former Testi­monies are so true, and pregnant in our behalfe, that our learned ad­uersaries are inforced to confesse, that most of those Authours did reiect the bookes in question for A­pocryphall. To say nothing of the Trent Anathema, layd vpon those reuerend Fa­thers, and learned Doctors, of the ancient and moderne [Page 123] Churches, who reiected those bookes in all ages; let vs weigh their chiefest rea­sons and arguments for de­fence of their cause, and it will appeare, there are no solid and certaine authori­ties, to proue the Apocryphall books in question for cano­nicall:Bell. lib. 1. de verbo Dei c. 12. To instance in parti­culars: Bellarmine saith, the booke of Iudith was held by Hierome for Canonicall; and withall pretended this rea­son for it, This booke hath a singular testimony from the fa­mous and first generall Coun­cell of Nice. It is true, that both contending parties subscribe to this first and best Councell of Nice; but I pray where is that Canon to be found? and sure I am [Page 124] there is no such testimony extant,Asseruit esse Apocryphū. Salm. Com. in Hebr. disp. 2. Acost. lib 2. de Christo Reuel c. 13. Quod mihi dubituntis suspicionem subindieare videtur, nā Nicena Sy­nodus olim hunc librū in Canonem redegerat cur annis 80 post non ac­censet eum Synodꝰ Lao­dicena? cur Nazianze­nus, eius non meminit? quid sibi vult quod idem &c. Lind. Pa­nopl lib. 3. cap 3. as is pretended by the Cardinall: nay more, Salmeron his fellow Iesuite protesteth, Saint Hierome af­firmed the booke of Iudith A­pocryphall. And Acosta the Iesuite professeth, (è Canone exemit) hee exempted it out of the Canon: and as touching the Councell of Nice, their owne Lin­danus proclaimeth, that this assertion giues him great cause of doubting: for if the Nicene Councell did anciently reckon the booke of Iudith in the Canon, why did not the Councell of Laodicea reckon it? why did not Nazi­anzene make mention of it? what meant hee to say, the Church at that time did reade [Page 125] the bookes of Iudith, Tobie, and the Maccabees, but did not re­ceiue them amongst the Canoni­call Scriptures.

Againe, looke vpon the Councell of Laodicea, called in the yeare 364, there you shall finde the booke of Iu­dith, Bin. Not. in Concil. Rom sub Syluest. by the testimony of Binius himselfe, reiected for Apocryphall, and this Coun­cell is confirmed by the se­cond Canon, of the sixt Ge­nerall Councell of Trullo; which the Fathers of that Councell would neuer haue done, if the first Generall Councell of Nice had de­creed the contrary.

I proceed to the examina­tion of the chiefest ground and principall cause of their Trent Decree; The third [Page 126] Councell of Carthage, called in the time of Siricius Bi­shop of Rome, about the yeere 399,Placuit vt praeter scripturas Cano­cas nihil in Ecclesiâ le­gatur sub nomine di­uinarum scripturarū: sunt autem Canonicae Scripturae, Tobias, Iu­dith, Hester, Esdrae libri duo Macha­beorū libri duo. Conc. Carth. 3. circa tem­pora Syri [...]ij Canone 47. touching the A­pocryphall bookes, makes this declaration; It pleaseth vs, that nothing be read in the Church, besides the Canonicall Scriptures: and there they publish for the Canonicall bookes, Tobie, Iudith, Hester, Esdras, and the two bookes of Maccabees: And to this Councell (say the Roma­nists) Saint Austen subscri­bed. This testimony I con­fesse, is extant in the 47. Canon of this Councell; but giue mee leaue to tell you, the Church of Rome doth not generally avowe that Canon of that Councell. It is the confession of Car­dinall [Page 127] Baronius; Haud omnes, Haudomnes Canones in hâc Synodo sanciti pro­bantur, sed diuersisaliis cōciliis Car­thaginensi­bus, vt inter alios iste, quo sacrorū librorū cer­tus numerꝰ definitur. Baron. An. 397. nū. 46. Canones 50. quorū tituli hîc assignā ­tur non om­nes in hâc Synodo, sed diuersisaliis cōciliis Car­thaginēsibꝰ sanciti pro­bātur inter alios 19.30. et 47. which last Canon is the Canō in question. Bin. in Cō ­cil. Carth. 3. &c. Not all the Canons of this Councell are established, but they are allowed in diuers other Councels of Carthage, as name­ly, that Canon wherein the number of sacred bookes were defined. And Binius the pub­lisher of the Councells, makes the like acknowledg­ment, that the 50 Canons, which were intituled to that Councell, were not all confirmed by it, but by other Councells of Carthage, (as namely) the 47 Canon: and that which argues suspition of a forged Canon, the bookes of Mac­cabees, which are inserted in the Latine copie of that Councell, are not to bee found in all, or any of the ancient Greeke copies or [Page 128] Manuscripts.Hic Canon Carthagi­nensis Con­cilii extat in collectio­ne Canonū Cresconii A­fricani Epi­scopi nondū edita sed ibi Machabee. rū libri non recensentur ne in omnibꝰ Gracis codi­cibus editis, & Mss. Christ. Iu­stellus ob­seru. & Not. in Cod. Ca­nonū Eccle. Africanae. Bell. de Ro­man. Pont. lib. 2. ca. 31. Quintum. Bell. de Cō ­cil. author. lib. 2. cap 8. Decimo. Neither is this Councell of that authori­tie as the Romanists them­selues pretend: for when our learned Protestants doe otherwise produce this Councell against the head of their Church, Bellarmine makes answere, This Prouin­ciall Councell ought not to bind the Bishop of Rome, nor the Bishops of other Prouinces. If wee oppose against it the Councell of Laodicea, which decreed those bookes for Apocryphall: Bellarmine makes answere, The Coun­cell of Carthage is of greater authoritie then that of Laodi­cea, because it is later, and be­cause it was Nationall; but the Councell of Laodicea was pro­uinciall. In the one place, [Page 129] when it seemingly makes for him, hee termes it a Nationall Councell, in the other, when it plainely makes against him, hee termes it Prouinciall. But, Oportet esse memorem, False­hood had need haue a good memory. It is vsuall with Bellarmine, with Canus, with Costerus, and the best learned Romanists, to excuse, Saint Hierome, Saint Austen, Saint Gregorie, and many others, which denied the Apocrypha for part of the diuine Ca­non, with this generall An­swere: It was no sinne, Bell de ver­bo Dei lib. 1. cap. 10. no he­resie in them to reject those bookes, because no Generall Councell in their dayes had de­creed any thing touching them. If therefore no Generall [Page 130] Councell had decreed the true Canon of Scripture in their dayes, how comes it to passe, that Bellarmine cites the Councell of Nice for the booke of Iudith? Why doe the Romanists claime the antiquitie of their Canon from the Councell of Car­thage? Why doe they pro­fesse in honor of that Coun­cell, that it was generally receiued, and that S. Austen subscribed to it: when as that Canon touching the Apocryphal Scriptures was not decreed, nor confirmed by that Councell by their owne confessions? But ad­mit the Councell of Car­thage had decreed it, yet can any man prooue that the Church at that time did receiue [Page 131] the bookes of Iudith, of Hester, of the Maccabees, and the rest, for the rule of faith? Shall we thinke that Saint Austen maintained the Canon of Scriptures con­trary to Saint Hierom? must wee beleeue that the Coun­cell of Carthage, within lesse then thirtie yeeres did de­cree contrary to the Coun­cell of Laodicea? nay more, is it so much as probable, that both those Councells should bee confirmed by one and the same generall Councell of Trullo; and yet one should decree a contra­ry Canon of Faith against the other? And as touching Saint Austens subscription to that Councell, it is a suf­ficient allegation against it, [Page 132] that the 47 Canon was ne­uer decreed in that Coun­cell; and the rather it ap­peares by this, for that St. Austen did not allowe the booke of Iudith, of Wisdome, of Ecclesiasticus, and the Mac­cabees for Canonicall, (all which are expressely de­creed in the Councell of Carthage for Canonicall.) Touching the booke of Iu­dith, St. Aug. de Ciuit. Dei. lib. 18. c. 26. & l. 17. c. 20 he tells vs, the Pewes ne­uer receiued it in to the Canon of Scriptures; & withal there he professeth, that the Canon of the Iewes was most authentical. Touching the bookes of Wisedome and Ecclesiasticus, hee tells vs, Solomon was a Prophet, as his workes (name­ly) the Prouerbes, the Canticles, and Ecclesiastes doe witnesse, all [Page 133] which are Canonicall, August. de Ciuit. Dei. lib. 17. c. 20. but Ec­clesiasticus, and the booke of Wisedome, were onely called his for some likenesse of stile: but all the learned affirme them none of his: yet the Westerne Churches held them anciently of great authoritie. And last­ly, touching the bookes of Maccabees, hee declareth by pregnant and seuerall rea­sons, that they are Apocry­phall; First, by way of di­stinction hee tells vs, this reckoning is not found in the Canonicall Scriptures, but in other bookes, which the Church receiueth for Canonicall Secondly, hee tells vs, they are accounted Canonicall for the suffering of holy Martyrs; whereas the Canonicall bookes are [Page 134] simply and absolutely of themselues and for them­selues Canonicall. Third­ly, hee tells vs, the Church did receiue them not vn­profitably, which is as poore a testimony as hee could haue giuen of his own works. Fourthly, they are receiued (with this condi­tion) if they be soberly read in the Church. And lastly, hee giueth this speciall reason in behalfe of the true Canon of Scripture; Christ giueth his Testimonie to those bookes, as namely, to the Law, to the Prophets, to the Psalmes, because all they beare witnesse of him: but the A­pocryphall bookes, neither witnes any thing of Christ, neither are they conteined [Page 135] vnder all, or any of those bookes, which Christ him­selfe diuided into the Law, the Prophets, and the Psalmes.

It is true,Proto cano­nici. Deutero­canonici. there was Canon Ecclesiasticall, wherein all, or most part of the Apocry­phall bookes, which are now read and receiued in our Churches, were anci­ently read for example of life, and instruction of man­ners, and for that cause were commonly called Canoni­call: and in this manner Saint Austen speaking of th [...] Maccabees, tells vs,Hos libros non Iudai, sed Ecclesia habet pro Canonicis. Aug. de ci uit. Dei lib. 18. cap. 36. These books the Church did account Cano­nicall, which the Iewes did not: yet withall he professeth in the same Tract, that those bookes which were not in the Iewes Canon, and yet [Page 136] were receiued of the Church for Canonicall, were of lesse force and authori­ritie; when as it cannot bee denied, that all the bookes truely and diuinely Cano­nicall, were alwayes reputed of equall force and authori­tie. Againe, there was Ca­non diuinus, Aug de Ci­uit. Dei. lib. 17 cap. 20. a diuine Canon, which was held the rule of Faith, wherein was num­bred onely the twentie two bookes of Scripture com­mitted to the Iewes; and this Canon, St. Austen (who termed the bookes of Mac­cabees Canonicall) doth di­stinguish from the Canon Ecclesiasticall, and giues his very instance in the bookes of Maccabees: In Macha­baeorum libris etsi ali­quid Mira­biliū de di­uini Cano­nis Mirabi­libus exiguā expositionē tangeremus. Aug. de Mi­rabil. sacrae Scrip. lib. 2. cap. 34. There may be something (saith he) found in [Page 137] the books of Maccabees, worthy to bee ioyned with the number of those miracles; yet hereof will wee haue no care, for that we intend the miracles, Diuini Canonis, which are conteined in the diuine Canon. And thus he distinguished the bookes of Maccabees, which he ter­med Canonicall, for instru­ction of life, from the di­uine Canon of Scriptures,Canon Morū, Ca­non Fidei. Caiet. which were receiued for confirmation of faith: and that diuine Canon onely, hee acknowledgeth to be giuen by inspiration from God, and to bee of most certaine credit and highest authority in the Church; and for that cause hee giues this further rule,Bell de ver­bo Dei lib. 1. cap. 10. The bookes which were receiued of all Churches (such [Page 138] as were in the diuine Canon among the Iewes) were of greatest authoritie, and ought to bee preferred before those which were not generally recei­ued of the all Churches: Diuum Augustinū fuisse certis­simū omnes libros Cano­nico [...]esse in­fallibilis ve­ritatis, sed nō fuisse ae­què certum de omnibus libris quos e­numeraue­rat qui essēt canonici, na si ità sentie­bat, rem nō fuisse adhuc à generali Concilio de­finitam et proptereà potuisse sine labe haeresios quosdālibros ab aliis non recipi. Idē ibidem. and thereupon, Bellarmine con­fesseth, by way of solution; That Saint Austen was most certaine, that all Canonicall bookes were of infallible truth, but was not alike certaine, that all the bookes of Scripture were Canonicall: for if he did think so, yet hee knew the poynt was not as yet defined by a generall Councell; and therefore without any staine of heresie, some books might not bee receiued of some persons for Apocryphall.

Since therefore the pre­tended Canon of the Nicene Councell is not extant, since [Page 139] their suggested Canon of the third Councell of Carthage, by their owne confessions, is not confirmed in that Councell; since the bookes of Maccabees, which are ioyned with the Apocryphall bookes, in the Latine co­pies are not to bee found in the Manuscripts of the an­cient Greeke coppies: nay more, since contrariwise, wee haue the testimonie of Christ and his Apostles for the intire Canon compre­hended in the Law, in the Prophets, and in the Psalmes: since we haue the Councell of Laodicca, in the Primitiue Church, generally recei­ued, and aftewards confir­med by a general Councel; since wee haue the consent [Page 140] of the ancient Fathers, and the ample testimonies of Bishops and Cardinals, and learned Writers, in the bo­some of the Roman Church, who witnesse with vs the Antiquity and Vniuersality of our Canon in all ages; I hope wee may with good reason reiect the Apocryphall Scriptures, as often as they are produced against vs for Freewill, for Purgatory, for Prayer for the dead, for In­vocation of Saints, for Worshipping of Angells, and the like: these things I say rightly considered, and patiently heard on both sides, I shall appeale to their owne learned Car­dinall Cajetans confession, who concludes for the an­tiquitie [Page 141] of our doctrine, and the Vniuersalitie of the Iewes Canon,Duas max­imas vtili­tates ex Iu­daeorū obsti­nacia per­cipimꝰ:—al­tera est fides librorū sa­crorum. Si enim omnes conuersi es­sent ad Christū putaret iam mundus Iu­daeorum ad inuentionē fuisse — quod fuerit promiss [...]s Messiis, sed vbi inimici Chri­sti Iudai perseuerant et testantur nullos alios apud Patres fuisse libros canonicè sa­cro [...]nisi i­stos. Cajet. Cōment. in Rom c 11. Bell. de verbo Dei. lib. 1. cap. 2. with one and the same reason: All Christians receiue a double benefit by the Apostacie and ob­stinacie of the Iewes; one is to know which are the true bookes of the Olde Testament: for if all the Iewes had beene con­verted to the faith of Christ, then would the world haue suspected that the Iewes had in­vented those promises which are of Christ the Messias: but now for as much as the Iewes are enemies vnto Christ, they beare witnesse vnto vs, that there are no bookes Canonicall, but those onely which the Iewes themselues acknow­ledged to bee Canoni­call.

[Page 142]To conclude therefore this first poynt, since the Scripture is the most certaine and safest rule of Faith, by our aduersaries owne con­fession, since the Canoni­call bookes of Scripture, (which are the onely rule of Faith) are conteined in the Law, in the Prophets, and the Psalmes, vnder all or any of which the Apocryphall bookes are not conteined, I say, to leaue this certaine and safe way, and receiue Apocryphall additions to that Word,Deut. 4.2. &c. 12.32. Prou. 30.6. Reuel. 22.18 when it is strict­ly forbidden by God him­selfe: Thou shalt not adde to this Word; this is Via dubia, a doubtfull and vncertaine way; this is Via Deuia, a wandring and By-way.

[Page 143]But because our aduersa­ries insist vpon an other ground, (viz.Nō aliundè nos habere Scripturam esse diuinā, et qui sunt libri sacri, quā ex Tra­ditioniꝰ nō scriptis. Bel. de verb. Dei lib. 4. c. 4.) That by no o­ther meanes wee can know the Scriptures to be diuine, nor the bookes to bee holy and (Cano­nicall) but onely from vn­written Tradition, I will leaue them to their Apocry­phall Scriptures, and pursue them in their vnwritten tra­ditions in the next place.

SECT. VII. The Romanists in poynt of Tra­ditions contradict the truth, and themselues; grounding most of their erronious Do­ctrine vpon vnwritten Tra­ditions, and yet frequently al­ledge the written Word for them.

IT is the first Article of the Romane Creed, to which all Bishops and Priests are sworne:Bulla Pij 4. Art. 1. I admit and embrace the Apostolicall and Ecclesiasticall Traditions, and the other obseruations and constitutions of the Church. What are meant by those Obseruations and Consti­tutions [Page 145] of the Church, and how the Priests are bound to imbrace them. The Councell of Trent decla­reth in this manner.Necnon Traditiones ipsas tum ad fidem tum ad mo res pertinē ­tes—pari pietutis af­fectu ac re­uerentia suscipit & veneratur Conc. Trid Sess. 4. De­cret. 1. Tradi­tions appertaining to faith and manners, as if they were dicta­ted by Christ himselfe with his owne mouth, or by the holy spi­rit; and preserued by a conti­nuall succession in the Catho­lique Church, the Councell re­ceiueth with equall reuerence and religious affection, as shee receiues the holy Striptures themselues.

Heere was the first alte­ration made, touching the rule of Faith; and from the Decree of this Councell, Bellarmines doctrine began to take place.Regula par­tialis nō to­talis. Bell. The Scripture is but a partiall, not a totall [Page 146] rule of Faith: for certainly till this time, Traditions concerning faith and man­ners, were neuer reputed of equall authoritie with the Scriptures, nor a part of the Rule of Faith. It was the Tenet of Aquinas, (and the later Schoolemen knew no other doctrine, till the Councell of Trent.Aquin. in 1. ad Tim. cap. 6.) The doctrine of the Prophets and A­postles is called Canonicall, be­cause it is the rule of our vnder­standing, and therefore no man ought to teach otherwise. But you shall obserue from, and after this time, the Ro­manists performed their oath (Ex abundanti) I may say more then enough. Cardinall Baronius tells vs, Tradition is the foundation of [Page 147] Scriptures, Baron. An. 58. n. 11.and excels them in this, that the Scriptures can­not subsist, vnlesse they bee strengthened by Traditions, but Tradition hath strength enough without the Scriptures. And that the world may know it is vsuall with our aduer­saries, not onely to equall their vnwritten Traditions, but also to aduance them a­boue the Scriptures, let their sayings bee weighed by any indifferent man, and it will appeare, the Scrip­tures are of so little vse or esteeme with them, as if they were not worthy to be named in poynts of contro­uersie betwixt vs.Lindan Pa­nopl. l. 1. c. 22. l. 5. c. 4. l. 1. c. 6. &c. Traditions (saith Lindan) are the most certaine foundations of Faith, the most sure ground of the sa­cred [Page 148] Scriptures, the impenetra­ble buckler of Ajax, the sup­presser of all heresies. On the other side, the Scripture (saith hee) is a nose of waxe, a dead and killing letter without life, a meere shell without a kernell, a leaden rule, a wood of thieues, a shop of heretiques, and the like. Costerus the Iesuite tels vs for certain. It was neuer the minde of Christ, either to com­mit his mysteries to parchment, or that his Church should de­pend on paper writings: but say the Rhemists, Rhem. Test. in 2. Thess. 2. v. 19. Wee haue plaine Scriptures, all the Fa­thers, most euident reasons, that wee must either beleeue Tradi­tions, or nothing at all: nay more, saith Costerus, The ex­cellencie of the vnwritten word doth far surpasse the Scriptures, [Page 149] which the Apostles left vs in parchments; Coster. Eu­christ. cap. 1 pag. 44. the one is written by the finger of God, the other by the penne of the Apostles; the Scripture is a dead letter writ­ten in paper or parchment, which may be razed or wrested at pleasure: but Tradition is written in mens hearts, which cannot be altered: the Scrip­ture is like a scabberd, which will receiue any sword, either leaden, or woodden, or brazen, and suffereth it selfe to be draw­en by any interpretation. Tra­dition retaines the true sword in the scabberd; that is, the true sense of the Scripture in the sheath of the letter. The Scrip­tures doe not containe clearely all the mysteries of Religion, for they were not giuen to that end, to prescribe an absolute forme of [Page 150] faith; but Tradition containes in it all truth, it comprehends all the mysteries of faith, and all the estate of Christian Religion, and resolues all doubts which may arise concerning faith, and from hence it will follow, that Tradition is the Interpreter of all Scriptures, the Iudge of all Controuersies, the Remouer of all errors, and from whose judg­ment we ought not to appeale to an other Iudge, yea rather all Iudges are bound both to regard and follow her judgement.

Now if we looke backe, and consider those blasphe­mous speeches vsed against the Scriptures, and compare those passages, with the re­uerend regard they giue vn­to Traditions, wee cannot but conceiue there were [Page 151] some speciall reasons that induced the Pope & Trent Councell to set Traditions in the first place.Quam Tra­ditionū au­thoritatē si tollas nuta­re iam & vacillare videbuntur Andrad. de Orth. expli. lib. 2. Andradius who well vnderstood the state of the Church of Rome, being present at the making of that decree, giues this generall lesson in their behalfe: Many poynts (of Ro­mane doctrine) would reele and totter, if they were not sup­ported by the helpe of Traditi­ons. But it may not bee for­gotten,Sutor. de Translat. Bibl. c. 22. their owne Monke Petrus de Sutor more parti­cularly shewes one speciall cause why the Scriptures were denied vnto the lay people. (viz.) Because many things being taught by the Ro­mane Church, and not contai­ned in the Scriptures, would [Page 152] more easily drawe the people from the traditions and obser­uances of their Church. And another reason why Tradi­tions are in that speciall re­quest aboue the Scriptures, is rendred by their owne Bishop Canus: Canus. loc. Theol lib. 3. cap. 3. Because Tra­dition is not onely of greater force against heretiques, then the Scripture, but almost all disputation with heretiques, is to bee referred to Traditions. Thus you see by the con­fessions of two learned Ro­manists, there was great cause why traditions should haue the first place amongst the Articles of the Creed; for the one saith, they pre­uent the reading of the Scriptures, which other­wise would discouer the [Page 153] doctrine of their Church: the other saith, they are more availeable then the Scriptures, to confute the doctrine of heretiques.

These testimonies pre­mised for the honour and authoritie of Papall Tra­ditions, let vs examine what are meant by Tradi­tions; and next, which are those Traditions, that are of that high esteeme in the Romane Church: for if their Traditions bee of equall authoritie with the Scriptures, and yet are not contained in the Scriptures, there is great reason they should bee approoued by testimonies and witnesses aequiualent to the Scrip­tures.

[Page 154] Kellis. Sur­uey. l. 8. c. 3.Doctor Kellison tells vs, that Tradition is nothing else, but an opinion or custome of the Church, not written in holy Scriptures, but yet deliuered by the hands of the Church from time to time, from Chri­stians to Christians euen to the last age. And Saint Austen declareth more properly: VVhatsoeuer the Vniuersall Church doth hold, Aug. lib 4. contra Do­nat. c. 24. not being ordained by Councells, but hath beene euer held, that is beleeued most rightly to be an Apostoli­call Tradition.

It appeares therefore that Papall Traditions, which are of equall authority with the Scriptures, must haue Vniuersalitie of Churches, and consent of ages, (or to vse the wordes of their [Page 155] Trent Councell, Such as are preserued by a continuall suc­cession in the Catholike Church. All doctrinall Traditions of this nature, are receiued by the Reformed Churches; for wee all professe with the same Father:Conc. Trid. Sess. 4. Whatso­euer is vsed by the Church throughout all the world, is to bee obserued, and it would bee most insolent madnesse to di­spute against the same. Let vs heare therefore out of their owne mouthes, what are those Traditions which are not written in any Apo­stolique Authour, and yet haue those requisite condi­tions, and speciall characters of the Roman Church, viz. Antiquity, Vniuersality and Succession.

[Page 156] Pet. à Soto in lib. cont. Brentium. Petrus à Soto giues vs to vnderstand, that the sacrifice of the Altar, the vnction of Chrysme, Inuocation of Saints, Prayers for the dead, the Popes Supremacie, Consecration of water in Baptisme, the whole Sacrament of Confirmation, Orders, Matrimony, Penance, Extreame vnction, Merit of workes, Necessitie of satisfacti­on, and confession to a Priest, are all Traditions of the Romane Church.Canis in Catech. c. 5. de precept. Eccles. Coster. in refut. script. Wallesij antith 6. Canus loc. Theol. li 3. ca. 3. Canisius and Costerus referre to Tra­ditions, the worship of Ima­ges, set times of fasting, all the Ceremonies of the Masse. Mel­chior Canus tells vs, the im­ploring helpe of holy Martyrs, and celebrating their memo­ries, the worshipping of Images, the consecrating and receiuing [Page 157] of the body and blood of Christ by the Priest, the Sacraments of Confirmation and Orders not to bee reiterated, are no where happily to bee found in Scrip­tures: but amongst all the Romanists, as it is obserued by reuerend Whitakers, there is none doth so fully and punctually set downe the Traditions of the Romane Church; as their Bishop Lindan, who amongst other Traditions,Whit. cōtr. 1. c. 5. quest. 6. mentions the Reall presence, the Communion vnder one kinde, priuate Masse, Indulgences, Purgatory, Peters liuing and dying at Rome. All or most of these Traditions are substantiall and funda­mentall poynts, and the de­nyall of them makes a man an heretike in their Church. [Page 158] Now it is very obseruable in the first place, that no vn­written Tradition hath any ground or foundation in the Scripture:Peres. de Tradit. p 4. for Tradition is so taken (saith Peresius) that it is distinguished against the doctrine, which is found in the Canonicall bookes of Scripture; and consequently touching all, or any of the Papall Traditions, there is no vse at all of Scriptures. Herein then stands the difference betwixt the Church of Rome and vs:Multa pertinere ad Christiano­rum doctri­nam et fidē, quae nec a­pertè nec obscu [...]è in sacris literis cōtinentur. Canus loc. Theol. ca. 3. fund. 3. There are ma­ny things (saith Canus) belon­ging to the doctrine & faith of Christians, which are neyther contained in the sacred Scrip­tures, manifestly or obscurely: and this he vnderstands by the Traditions of his owne [Page 159] Church: There is no point of Faith taught in our Church, which is not ex­pressely contained in the Scriptures, or by necessarie consequence deduced from thence; and if we receiue the witnesse of men, yet the witnesse of God is greater. 1. Ioh. 5.9. But that which is incongru­ous to common sense, and altogether different from the Romish doctrine, those men which generally pro­fesse, that vnwritten Tradi­tions are so called, because they are distinguished from the word written: & as Bel­larmine confesseth,Bell de ver­bo Dei. lib. 4. c 2. do signifie that doctrine which is not writ­ten by the first Author, in any Apostolique Booke, (either for want of a continued succes­sion [Page 160] in their Traditions, or to make the ignorant be­leeue, the Scripture makes in all poynts for them, I say for those very points (which they terme Traditions vn­written) they produce the Word written:See the Gag of the Go­spell. as for in­stance, Purgatory is termed an vnwritten Tradition, and therefore by Bellarmines te­stimony is not to bee found in any Apostolike Author: yet the Cardinall,Bel. de Pur­gatorio. for this very poynt, cites twentie seuerall places in the writ­ten Word to prooue it. In­vocation of Saints, is a Tra­dition vnwritten (and there­fore not to bee found in Scripture) yet the Cardinall prooues it out of the Word written:Bell. de san­cta. B [...]at. l. 1. c. 20. Goe to my seruant [Page 161] Iob, and he will pray for thee. The Communion in one kind is a Tradition vnwrit­ten, (and therefore not to be found in any Apostolique Author) yet Fisher Bishop of Rochester, proues it out of the Word written:Roffen ad­vers. Luth. A [...]t. 16. Giue vs this day our daily bread. Pray­er and Seruice in an vn­knowne tongue, is a Tradi­tion vnwritten, and there­fore not to bee found in Scripture,Ledes. de diuin. scrip. quauis lin­ [...]uâ non le­gendâ. c. 22. yet Ledesma the Iesuite prooues it strongly out of the Word written: Our Sauiour opened the booke of the Prophet Esay, and after­wards closed it. How poore and weake are these and the like authorities deduced from the Scriptures, I leaue to euery mans iudgement: [Page 162] but sure I am, the number of their Traditions is vn­certaine, and the nature of them is destroyed by their owne Tenets, when they confound the written word with their vnwritten Do­ctrines.

It was the ancient rule of Vincentius Lyrinensis, In ipsâ Ca­tholicâ Ec­clesia mag­nopere cu­randum est, vt id tenea­mus, qd vbi­que qd sem­per quod ab omnibꝰ cre­ditū, hóc est enim verè proprie (que) Catholicum qd ipsa vis nominis ra­tic (que) decla­rat Vincēt. Lyrin. c. 3. In the Catholique Church we ought to bee carefull, to hold that which hath been beleeued in all places, at all times, and of all persons, for that is truely and properly Catholique, which the force and reason of the name doth de­clare. Those men therefore which assume the name of Catholique, and accurse all those, who receiue not Tra­ditions with equall reue­rence and authoritie with [Page 163] the Scriptures; let them proue that their doctrinall Traditions, (before named) haue been euer held and be­leeued at all times, in all places, and of all persons; let them proue they were receiued with the vniforme consent of Fathers, let them proue they were decreed in a constant succession from age to age, from Christians to Christians throughout the whol vniuersal Church. These are requisite condi­tions, and ancient characters of Apostolique Traditions: But that there are any such, or euer were in the Chuch of Rome, excepting those onely which are expresse­ly, or by necessary conse­quence deduced from the [Page 164] word of God, although they are daily pretended by them, yet to this day were neuer proued. And hence it is, that for want of sure footing and foundation in the Scriptures, many Ritu­all Traditions, and Ob­seruations of the ancient Church are changed, and many doctrinall Traditions and Constitutions of the Roman Church are newly brought in, which are pre­tended to be ancient.

Touching Rituall Tradi­tions, [...]. Bass. de Spirit. sanct. ca. 27. Saint Basil tels vs: It was not lawfull for any man to kneele in the Church vpon the Sunday: and this Traditionn (saith he) was giuen vnto vs in secret charge by the Apostles of Christ. Yet this Tradition is [Page 165] altered. St. Austen saith, Be­tweene Easter and Whitsuntide it was not lawfull for any man to fast, Aug. ad Ca­sulanum. by the Tradition of the Apostles: yet this Tradition is abrogated.Sententiae haec infan­tibꝰ Eucha­ristiam esse necessariam cercitèr se­xentos an­nos viguit in Ecclesia. Mald. Com. in Iohn 6. The giuing of the Eucharist to Infants, was an ancient Tradition, & conti­nued in the Church six hundred yeeres after Christ, saith Mal­donat: yet this Tradition is abolished. And as touching the doctrinall Traditions and Constitutions of their Church, (which are made of equall authoritie with the Scrip­ture,) you shall scarcely find any of them; I say confi­dently, you shall finde none of them to haue been recei­ued de Fide, as Articles of faith, with the Vniuersalitie of Churches, the consent of [Page 164] [...] [Page 165] [...] [Page 166] Fathers, and continued suc­cession of the now receiued doctrine in all ages.

That this may the more plainely apeare, I will exa­mine the Tenets of the Pa­pall Traditions ab Initio, and see what the Romane Church in generall, and the Greeke Church in particu­lar, (which for many hun­dred yeeres communicated in the same Faith with the Romane) hath taught and beleeued concerning their doctrine.

SECT. VIII. The most generall pretended Traditions of the Romane Church, were vtterly vn­known to the Greeke Church, and want Antiquitie, Vni­uersalitie, and Succession, the proper markes of true Tradi­tions in the Roman Church.

TO examin the foun­dation of the Greek Church, let vs look vp to the time of the Apo­stles, where wee shall finde S. Iohn writing to the seuen Churches in Asia; Reuel. 1 11 and Saint Paul sending his Epistles to the Corinthians, to the Ephe­sians, to the Thessalonians, all [Page 168] principall members of the Greeke Church. In these Churches, according to the doctrine of the Apostles, there is nothing that makes for the now Romane Faith and Doctrine, but rather a­gainst it: and that the Ro­manists may not vainely ar­rogate to themselues the ti­tle of Catholike and Vni­uersall Church, (as if the whole Christian Faith were confined to the Bishop of Rome and his Diocesse) it is plaine and euident, that Saint Peter taught the word at Antioch, Saint Andrew in Greece and Muscouie, Saint Iames in Iudea, Saint Iohn in Asia, Saint Philip in Assyria, Saint Thomas in India, Saint Matthew in Aethiopia, Saint [Page 169] Thaddeus in Armenia, Saint Paul in all the countreyes from Arabia to Slauonia, St. Bartholomew in Scythia, Saint Simon in Persia, Ioseph of A­rimathea in Great Britaine: and all these published the same Faith for substance which wee at this day pro­fesse in the Church of Eng­land.

Looke vpon the Greeke Church in generall:Terra Grae­corum vn­di (que) desti­nata est fi­des. Aug. Ep. 178. & Ep. 170. Saint Austen tells vs, From the land of Grecia, the faith into all pla­ces was spread abroad: and in particular, Saint Chrysostome tells vs, The name of Christi­ans beginning first from the citie of Antioch, as from a spring, hath flowed ouer the whole world. And without doubt, that famous Citie [Page 170] in Greece gaue the first name and title to the Christians, and therefore was called, Theopolis, Antioch. the Citie of God.

It cannot bee denyed, that the Easterne Church is before Rome in time, shee hath larger bounds, and multitudes of people, al­most all the Apostolique Seas, most of the Patriarchs, seuen Vniuersall Coun­cells, the Syrian language wherein Christ spake, the Greeke, wherein the Scrip­ture of the New Testament was written, and withall a personall Succession, euen from the Apostles them­selues without interrupti­on; and that which is knowne to the meanest Gre­cian, [...]. the words of Church, [Page 171] of Bishop, of Priest, of Deacon, of Baptisme, of Eucharist, of Christian, are al deriued from the Greekes, and proue that Religion came from them, from whom those termes were borrowed. This do­ctrine is so true, that it in­forced the Bishop of Bitonto to professe openly in the Councell of Trent. Eia igitur, Graecia Ma­ter nostra, cui id totū debet quod habet Lati­na Ecclesia. Conc. Trid. orat. Episc. Bitont. It is our Mother Grecia, vnto whom the Latine Church (or the Church of Rome) is beholding for all that euer she hath. And thus much touching the founda­tion of the Greeke Church. Now that we may the bet­ter discerne the Antiquitie of our Religion, and the Noueltie of the Romane, let vs examine the Tenets of the Greeke Church, and [Page 172] by them wee shall discerne whether the Roman church hath continued visible in that doctrine which shee now teacheth, and con­sequently whether their pretended Apostolike Tra­ditions haue Antiquitie, Vni­uersalitie, and Succession in all ages.

Matthias Illiricus, being borne in Dalmatia, not farre from the confines of Graecia, and therefore may bee thought to be well acquain­ted with their orders, tells vs: The Churches of Grecia, the Churches of Asia, Macedo­nia, Misia, Valachia, Russia, Muscouia, and Africa ioyned thereunto, that is to say, in a manner the whole world, or at least the greater part [Page 173] thereof, neuer granted the Popes Supremacie, neuer al­lowed either Purgatorie, or Priuate Masses, or the Com­munion vnder one kind; wee may adde to these, Transub­stantiation, Prayer in an vn­knowne tongue, Forbidding of marriage to Priests, and Po­pish Inuocation of Saints, (as it is now beleeued) were vt­terly vnknown to the Greeke Church, and consequently want Antiquitie, Vniuersalitie and Succession, the proper markes of true Traditions in the Roman Church. To examine them in order.

The Popes Supremacie] is a Tradition Apostolicall, and declared for an Article of Faith in the Romane Church; yet this Tradition [Page 174] wants Antiquitie, Vniuersality and Succession.

Nemo de­cessorū meo­rū hoc tam prophano vocabulo v­ti cōsueuit-Nullus Ro­manorum Pontificum hoc singula ritatis nomē assumpsit. Greg. lib. 4. ep. 76. & 80Touching Antiquitie,] Pope Gregorie 600 yeeres after Christ, professeth pub­liquely, That none of his pre­decessors did euer assume that profane (Vniuersall) title.

Touching Vniuersalitie] Aluarez tells vs, that Prester Iohn sent vnto him, to know why the Pope diuided the Churches of Antioch and & Rome, seeing the Church of Antioch was in a manner the chiefe, and head of all Churches,Cathol. Trad. pag. wherein St. Peter gouerned & dwelt 5 yeres. Whereunto when hee an­swered, they were obliged by an Article of their faith; hee replied; If the Pope would vsurpe so great a [Page 175] prerogatiue, as to command things vnlawfull, they would make no reckoning of it: and if by such meanes their Abuna, (their Primate) would presume so far, they would burne the copie of such a command. In like maner Nilus Archbishop of Thessalonica, tells vs,Nilus lib. 1. de Primat. Papae. The Greeke Church, though it neuer denyed the primacy of Order to the Pope of Rome, yet their assu­med predominance of authori­tie it alwayes resisted.

Touching Succession] Bel­larmine himselfe confesseth,Bell. in Prae­fat. de Rom. Pontif. The first who most earnestly withstood the Supremacy of the Bishops of Rome, seeme to bee the Grecian Fathers: for since the yeere 381, they laboured to preferre the Bishop of Con­stantinople, [Page 176] the three Patriarkes of the East, in the second place next to the Bishop of Rome; and this (saith he) may bee vnderstood by the second Generall Councell. And as in this Councell of Constanti­nople, there was a resistance made against the power and iurisdiction of the Bishop of Rome: so likewise hee telleth vs further, that in the yeere 451,Bell. ibidē. the Greeke Fa­thers not being content with their determination, laboured to make the Bishop of Constan­tinople equall with the Bishop of Rome: for in the Councell of Chalcedon, the Greeke Fathers decreed it, (but deceitfully) in the absence of the Popes Legat, that the Bishop of Constantino­ple should haue the second place [Page 177] after the Bishop of Rome: not­withstanding hee should haue equall priuiledges with the o­ther. Thus two generall Councells, the one consi­sting of 150 Bishops, the o­ther of 630, by the testi­monies of the Popes Car­dinall, opposed the Suprema­cie of the Bishop of Rome, the which Supremacie (if in those dayes) it had been re­ceiued for an Article of faith, or a Tradition Apo­stolique, without doubt those two famous Councels would haue subscribed to it, without any resistance or opposition to the vniuersall Head of the Church. And that you may yet further know the Churches of A­sia, and Grecia, continued [Page 178] their Resolution in this poynt,Conc. Flo­rentinum. An. 1436. looke vpon the late Councell of Florence, and there you shall obserue,Paulus Ae­milius Pan­talcon. that Mi­chael Palaeologus, by reason hee submitted himselfe to the Pope in that Councell, was hated of all the people while hee liued, and being dead, was forbidden Chri­stian buriall. And Isidorus, the Archbishop of Kiouia in Russia, Math à Mi­chonia in Nouo Orbe Iewel. p. 411 for that he began for Vnities sake, to mooue the people to the like sub­mission, was therefore de­posed of his Bishoprick and put to death.

Thus the Popes Suprema­cie, wants Antiquitie, Vniuer­salitie, and Succession, the proper markes of Romane Traditions, and consequent­ly [Page 179] can bee no Article of Faith, no Apostolique Tra­dition, as is pretended in this first poynt.

Purgatorie] is reputed a Tradition Apostolicall, and receiued in the Romane Church for an Article of Faith; yet this doctrine wants Antiquitie, Vniuersality and Succession.

Touching Antiquitie] Ni­lus Archbishop of Thessalo­nica, professeth in the name of the Greeke Church, that it could bee no Tradition Apostolicall: for (saith hee) Wee haue not receiued by Tra­dition from our Fathers, Nil. de Pur­gat. igne. C [...]th. Trad. q. 16. that there is any fire of Purgatory, or any temporall punishment; and we know that the Easterne Church doth not beleeue it. [Page 180] And amongst other reasons why Purgatory was not re­ceiued by them,Marcus E­phes in Graecorum Apolog. de igne Purga­torio ad Concil. Flo­rentinum. they ren­der this for one: that where­as their Fathers had deliuered vnto them many visions and dreames, and other wonders concerning the euerlasting pu­nishment (in hell) yet none of them had declared any thing concerning the temporary fire of Purgatory.

Legat qui velit Grae­corū veterū Cōmentari­os et nullum quantum opinor aut quā rarissi­mè de Pur­gatorio ser­monē inue­niet. Sed ne (que) Latini simul omnes at sensim huius rei veritatem conceperunt ne (que) tā ne­cessaria fu­it, siue Pur­gatorii, fiue Indulgenti­arū fides in Primitiuâ Ecclesia at que nunc est Roffen A [...]t. 18 p. 496.Touching Vniuersalitie] It is the confession of Fisher, their owne Bishop of Roche­ster: Whosoeuer will reade the Commentaries of the ancient Greekes, so farre as I see, he shall finde very seldome mention of Purgatory, or none at all: and the Latins (in the Westerne Church) did not receiue the truth of this matter altogether, [Page 181] but by little and little; neither indeed was the faith, either of Purgatorie, or Indulgences so needfull in the Primitiue Church, as now it is. A strange confession of a learned Bi­shop, that two principall Articles of Faith (viz.) Pur­gatorie, and Indulgences, were scarce knowne in the anci­ent Church, nor yet very necessary to bee receiued at all times, and of all per­sons. Let it suffice, many poynts of the now Ro­mane Religion were vtter­ly vnknowne to the Greeke Church, (which in the first ages did wholly communi­cate with the ancient Ro­mane Faith:) and therefore their Alphonsus à Castro, thinkes it the best way to [Page 182] solue the poynt in question with this answere:Vnus ex no­tissimis er­roribus Grae­corū et Ar­menorū est, quo docent nullum esse purgatoriū locum quo animae ab hac luce migrantes purgentur à sordibus. Alph. à Cas. aduers. hae­res. lib. 12. It is one of the most knowne errours of the Grecians, and Armenians, whereby they teach there is no place for Purgatorie, where soules after this life are purged from their offences.

Touching Succession] St. Chrysostome, Gregorie, Neocae­saria, Olympiodorus, and di­uers ancient Fathers were vtterly ignorant of it; and Saint Austen a Latine Father was so farre from receiuing it as a poynt of Faith, that doubtingly hee professeth,Tale ali­quid etiam post hāc vi­tā fieri in­credibile nō est, et vtrù ita s [...] quaer [...] potest, & aut [...]e­n [...] [...]u [...] latere. Aug. in Enchirid. ad Laurent. cap. 69. It is not incredible, that some such thing should bee after this life; and whether it bee so or no, it may be [...] a question: and it may bee either found, or bee hidden. [...] we all know, [Page 183] and confesse, that if Saint Austen and the Romane Church, had receiued the doctrine of Purgatory in his dayes, (as it is now taught for an Article of Faith) certainely hee would ne­uer haue told vs, perhaps it is so, it may be, or it may not bee; and it is a doubt whether there be any such place or no. And howsoeuer it is pre­tended, that the Greeke Church at the Councell of Florence, for peace sake, was content to yeeld, that the middle sort of soules were in a place of punishment; but whe­ther that were fire, or darknesse, and tempest, or something else, they would not contend: yet, I say, if they had assented to this or the like doctrine, it [Page 184] was (1400) yeeres after Christ, and therefore most vnfit to be receiued for an Article of Faith: but the truth is, Marcus Bishop of Ephesus, who was one of the Legats of the Patriarchs of Antioch & Hierusalem, would neuer consent to this Do­ctrine; neither could the Greeke Church afterwards by any meanes bee drawne to yeeld to it. Besides, with­in two yeeres after, Cardi­nall Cusanus, and the Depu­ties of the Councell of Ba­sil, in the yeere 1438, doe sufficiently manifest the o­pinion of the Greek Church; wherein the Grecians begin their disputation in this ma­ner:Mart. Crus. in Turc. Graec. p. 186 A Purgatory fire, and a punishment by fire which is [Page 185] temporall, and shall at last haue an end; neither haue wee recei­ued from our Doctors, neither doe wee know that the Church of the East d [...]eth maintaine it. And from these and the like propositions, they make this peremptory conclusi­on. [...]. Ibid. Sacran. c. 2. For these reasons there­fore, neither haue wee hitherto affirmed any such thing, nei­ther will wee at all affirme it. I may adde to these Testi­monies the opinions of the Muscouites, who affirme that there is no Purgatory, but onely two receptacles for soules, Heauen and Hell. A­gaine, the Cophites, and the Abissines, the Georgians, and Armenians, together with the Syrians and Caldeans, that are subiect to the Patriarkes [Page 186] of Antioch and Babylon, from Cyprus and Palestina, vnto the East Indies, neuer made discouery of the new found land of Purgatory.

This doctrine therefore wants the proper markes of the Romane Church, (viz.) Antiquitie, Vniuersalitie, and Succession, and therefore can bee no Article of faith, no Apostolique Tradition, as is pretended in the second poynt.

Priuate Masse] wherein the Priest alone doth com­municate without the peo­ple, hath neither Antiquity, Vniuersalitie, nor Consent, and consequently hath not the true markes of Romish Traditions.

Touching Antiquitie] it [Page 187] is the confession of their owne Cochleus; Coch. de sa­crif. Missae contra Mus­culum. Anciently all the Priests and people did com­municate together, as appea­reth by the Canons of the Apo­stles, and writings of ancient Fathers. Odo in Ex­posit. Ca­nonis. And Odo Camera­censis professeth, that in the Primitiue Church they neuer had Masses without the conuen­tion of the people to communi­cate together.

Touching Vniuersalitie] it is the confession of Iohan­nes Hoffmeistenus: Cassand. Consult. de solit. Miss. pag. 906. The thing it selfe doeth speake and crie a­loud, both in the Greeke and Latin Church, that not onely the sacrificing Priest, but the other Priests and Deacons, and the rest of the people, or at least some part of the people, did communicate together: and [Page 188] how this custome ceased, it is to bee wondred, and it is to be en­deauoured, that this good cu­stome may bee restored to the Church.

Touching Succession] St. Chrysostome speaking to the lay people of his time,Chrys in 2. Thessal. Hom. 4. saith: Neither doe we receiue more, and you lesse of the holy table, but we taste therof equally both together. And St. Basil an other Greeke Father wit­nesseth the common vnion of Priests and people ex­pressely in these words:Liturg. Ba­silii. All wee receiuing of one bread and one cup, &c. the Quire singeth the Communion, and so they communicate together. I will adde to these the confessi­ons of their owne learned Authors: Cardinall Bessa­rion, [Page 189] a Greeke borne, decla­reth the maner of the Com­munion in his time;Primū con­secrare, de­inde frāgere postea distri­buere, quod nos in prae­senti facimꝰ Bessar. de sacr. Euch. An 1450. The very order of the things requi­red: first that we should conse­crate, (or blesse bread:) next, that we should breake it, last of all, that wee should diuide (or deliuer it to the people) which thing we (Grecians) doe at this present day. And for a conclusion of this poynt, Iustinian and Durand pub­likely declare and professe, that in ancient times, Iustin. in 1. Cor 10. Durand. Rat. 4 c. 53. diuers parts of one consecrated loafe were distributed to all, (the which the Greeke Church v­seth at this day) that by their Communion, their vnion with Christ might bee more plainely expressed.

Thus Priuate Masse wants [Page 190] the requisite conditions of the Romane Church, (viz.) Antiquitie, Vniuersalitie, and Succession; and therefore can bee no Catholike doctrine, no Apostolique Tradition, as is pretended in the third place.

The Communion in one kind] is reputed a Traditi­on Apostolicall, and recei­ued in the Roman Church for an Article of Faith; yet this doctrine wants Anti­quitie, Vniuersalitie, and Succession.

Touching Antiquitie] It is the confession of the Councell of Constance (where the Cup was taken from the people) that Christ did institute in both kinds, Concil. Const. 1414. and the Primitiue Church did continue [Page 191] it to the faithfull in both kinds. And Alphonsus à Castro tells vs,Alphons à Castr. cont [...]aeres. li. 6. that anciently for many a­ges, the Communion in both kindes was vsed among all Ca­tholiques.

Touching Vniuersalitie] Cassander witnesseth,Satis com­pertum est vniuersalē Christi Ec­clesiā mille ampliùs. Cassand. Consult. de vtra (que) spe­cie. that the vniuersall Church at this day, and the Romane Church for more then a thousand yeeres af­ter Christ, did exhibite the Sa­crament in both kinds, as it is most euident by innumerable testimonies both of Greeke and Latine Fathers.

Touching Succession] In later ages, Salmeron the Ie­suite professeth,Salmer. Tract. 35. It was the generall custome for lay people to communicate vnder both kinds, as at this day it is vsed among the Grecians, and was [Page 192] vsed in times past among the Corinthians, and in Africa. And Ieremie the Oecumeni­call Patriarch, returnes this answere to the defenders of the Faith in both kindes: [...]. Patr. resp. 1. c. 21. Dicitis, you say, that all ought to communicate vnder both kinds, and you say well: for we do so when we participate of the venerable mysteries.

Cassand. Liturg. c. 11 p. 28. Franciscus Aluarez tells vs, that in the kingdome of Prester Iohn, they vse in their Church to make a cake of honey, meale, and oyle, and powre wine into the cup, and all that communicate of the body of Christ, com­municate also of the Cup.

The Christians in Arme­nia, Idem Li­turg c. 14. p 32. after they haue com­municated with bread, in [Page 193] lieu of the cup, by reason there is no wine in India, they take dried grapes, and put them into water; and before the time they are to communicate, they presse them, and straine them, and vse that liquor instead of wine.

This doctrine therefore wants the requisite condi­tions of Antiquitie, Vniuer­salitie, and Succession; and therefore can be no Article of Faith, no Apostolique Tradition, as is presented in the fourth place.


TRansubstantiation] is re­puted a Tradition A­postolicall, [Page 194] and receiued in the Romane Church for an Article of Faith, yet this doctrine, if you respect the name, or nature of it, wants Antiquitie, Vniuersalitie, and Succession.

In Primiti­uâ Ecclesiâ de substātia fidei erat corpus Chri­sti sub speci­ebꝰ cōtineri, tamen non erat de fide, substantiam panisin cor­pus Christi cōuerti &c. Io. Yribarne in 4. d. 11. q. 3. disp. 42. Vnum addit Scotus quod minimepro­bandum qd ante Late­ranense Cō ­cilium non fuisset dog­ma fidei. Bell. li. 3. de Euch. c. 23.Touching Antiquitie] It is the confession of learned Yribarne: In the Primitiue Church, it was beleeued for a poynt of faith, that the body of Christ was contained vnder the formes of bread and wine, but it was not beleeued as a matter of faith, that after consecrati­tion, the substance of the bread was conuerted into the body of Christ. And their learned Scotus professeth, that before the Councell of Lateran (which was twelue hundred yeeres after Christ) Transubstantia­tion [Page 195] was not beleeued as a poynt of faith.

Touching Vniuersalitie] Eusebius a Greek Father, pa­raphrasing vpon the words of Christ; (The words which I speake vnto you, are spirit and life) deliuers this doctrine flat contrary to Transubstan­tiation: [...] Eu­seb. l. 3. Eccl. Theol. cont. Marcel. An­cyr. M ss. in Oxon. Bibli. publicâ. Doe not thinke that I speake of that flesh wherewith I am compassed, as if you must eat of that; neither imagine that I command you to drinke my sensible and bodily blood, but vnderstand well, the words which I haue spoken vnto you, are spirit and life. And Saint Chrisostom a principall mem­ber of the Greeke Church, in his Epistle written to Cae­sarius, hath these wordes;Etiamsi na­tura panis in ipso per­mansit. Chrys. ad Caesarium Monachum As before the bread be sancti­fied, [Page 196] we call it bread, but when Gods grace hath sanctified it, by the meanes of the Priest, it is deliuered from the name of bread, and is reputed worthy the name of the Lords body, al­though the nature of the bread remaine still in it. And to preuent that grosse opini­on, that after consecration, there remaine onely the shewes and accidents of bread and wine; Theodoret concludeth against the he­retique with this Catho­lique doctrine: [...]. The­od. in Dial. 2. Inconf. The mysticall signes, after the consecration, depart not from their owne na­ture; for they remaine in their former substance.

Euphraemius Patriarch of Antioch, giues his ioynt as­sent with vs flatly against [Page 197] the doctrine of Transubstan­tiation, hee tells vs:Ephrae de sacr. Antio. legibus lib. 1. in Phocij Biblio [...]hecâ Cod. 229. The Sa­crament of the body of Christ doeth neither depart from his sensible substance, and yet re­maineth vndiuided from in­telligible grace: and Baptisme being wholly made spirituall, and remaining one, doth retaine the propertie of his sensible sub­stance (of water I meane) and yet loseth not that which it is made. This holy Father, by comparing the Sacra­ments together, doth de­monstrate the faith of both; and as hee prooues that in the Sacrament of Baptisme, the substance of water still remaineth after consecrati­on, (which both Papists and Protestants acknowledge) in like maner (saith he) the [Page 198] substance of bread remaines in the Sacrament of the Eu­charist after consecration, which the Protestants con­fesse, and the Papists deny.

To omit many other proofes touching the vni­versalitie of our doctrine, let Pope Gelasius bee heard for the Catholike doctrine of the Romane Church in his time.Gelas. cont. Eutich. An Image or simi­litude (saith hee) of the body and blood of Christ, is celebra­ted in the action of the myste­ries: It is therefore apparant and euident enough, that wee must hold the same opinion of Christ the Lord which we pro­fesse, celebrate and receiue in his image: that as those signes by the working of the holy Ghost passe into the diuine substance, [Page 199] and yet remaine in the proprie­tie of their owne nature: euen so that very principall mysterie it selfe, whose force and trueth that Image assuredly represen­teth, doeth demonstrate one whole and true Christ, to conti­nue the two natures, of which he consisteth properly remaining. And that wee might the bettter vnderstand what he meant by those wordes, (viz.) The signes still abide in the proprietie of their owne na­ture, hee expoundeth him­selfe in these words, which vtterly ouerthrow the do­ctrine of Transubstantiation: Non desinit esse substantia, vel natura panis & vini: the substance or nature of bread ceaseth not, or perisheth not. Thus briefly I haue giuen [Page 200] you a taste of the generall doctrine of the Fathers in the first ages, who publike­ly professed the Protestant Faith, that the Eucharist was altogether a spirituall food, and that the nature of bread, and the very substance of bread did remaine after consecration.

Touching Succession] To let passe many Writers of eminent note in the Ro­mane Church, who in the later ages opposed Transub­stantiation, as namely Ber­tram, Aelfrick, Rupertus, Ra­banus Maurus, and diuers o­thers, who were neuer con­demned by their owne Church: Looke vpon the doctrine of the Greeke Church, and you shall find [Page 201] they haue kept the ancient faith of the Sacrament suc­cessiuely from their Prede­cessors. Pope Eugenius, af­ter hee had answered the Grecians at the Councell of Florence, that hee was well satisfied by them touching the Procession of the holy Ghost: Operae pre­tium est vt de Purgato­rio igne, & de summo Pontificis principatu, et de Azimo et fermēta­to pane a­gamus, vt omni ex parte con­iunctio no­stra sit ab­soluta. Con. Florent. Sess. 25. tells them further, it was well worth the labour, to treat of other points in dif­ference, as namely, of Pur­gatorie, of the Supremacie, of Leauened bread, and of Tran­substantiation, that their agree­ment might stand absolute in all respects. If Transubstanti­ation, and the other poynts of doctrine had bin succes­siuely receiued with the vni­forme consent of the Greeke Church, there had needed [Page 202] no reconciliation at that time betweene the Easterne and Westerne Churches for those Tenets: and that wee might yet farther vnder­stand, the difference be­twixt them was great in this very question; Marcus the Archbishop of Ephesus, speaking of the Romane Masse,Casaub. answ. to the Ep. of C. Peron p. 42. affirmes: It is mani­festly repugnant to the Exposi­tions and interpretations, which wee haue receiued by Tradition, and to the words of our Lord, and to the meaning of those words. And those which defend the Romane Rites concerning this matter, the same Marcus pronounceth: that they deserue to bee pitied, both in regard of their double ignorance, and their profound sottishnes.

[Page 203]It is true, [...]. the Greeke Church doth hold there is a mysticall transmutation in the Sacrament; but withall, they deny a Transubstanti­ation: they deny that any alteration is made by the wordes of consecration, (which is the generall Te­net of the Roman Church:) nay more, they call it bread after the words of Conse­cration are vttered. Touch­ing the first, Salmeron the Ie­suite, speaking in the person of the Grecians, deliuers their opinion in this maner.Dan. Chā. Panstr. lib. 6 de Euch. c. 7 For­asmuch as the Benediction is not superfluous or vaine, neither gaue Christ simply bread, it followeth, that when he gaue it, the transmutation was already made, and those words, (This is [Page 204] my body) did demonstrate what was conteined in the bread, not what was made by them. De diuino deni (que) sa­crificio quae­situm est â latinis, quo­modò prola­tū Christi verbù, accipite et com­edite, hoc est enim corpꝰ meū— vos hāc po­steà oratio­nem additis dicentes. Et fac quidem hunc panem pretiosum corpus Chri­sti tui san­cto tuo spi­ritu trans­mutans. Concil. Florent. Sess. 25. p. 595. Bi­nius. This confession is agreeable to that question the Roma­nists put to the Grecians at the Councell of Florence, (viz.) Why they vsed to pray after the words of Consecration in this manner? Make this bread the precious Bodie of Christ; and so call it bread af­ter Consecration? To which the Grecians made answere. Wee confesse, by these words, (This is my body) [...], the bread is consecrated, (which Binius most falsely hath translated, Transubstantia­ted) and becomes the body of Christ, and wee pray that the holy Ghost may descend vpon vs, and change the bread, and [Page 205] make it the body of Christ to vs, to the spirituall food of our soules. Transub­stantiari. And that wee may know what is meant by that change or transmutati­on in the Sacrament,Binius in Conc. Flor. Sess. 25. p. 695. the Patriarch tells vs: The body and blood of Christ are truely mysteries; Patr Resp. 1 ca. 10. & 13. not that these ( [...]) are changed into humane flesh, but we into them. And for further confirma­tion of our doctrine, that it is not the reall and sub­stantiall flesh of Christ which is offered: but the Sacrament of his flesh;Nec data est t [...]c [...]aro Domini quā gestebat Apostolis comedenda, ne (que) sanguis bibēdus, nec etiam nunc in sacro hoc ritu descen­dit Domini­cum corpus de coelo, [...] blasphe­mia enim hoc esset. patr Resp. 1 cap. 10. de Coenâ Do­mini. hee tells vs: The flesh of Christ which hee carried about him, was not giuen to his Apostles to bee eaten, nor his blood to bee drunke, neither doth the body of our Lord at this day descend [Page 206] from heauen in the Sacrament; for this (saith hee) were blas­phemy. And certainely, if neither Christs Bodie in which hee suffered, nor his body glorified be present in the Sacrament, (as this Pa­triarch professeth) there can bee no corporall, no reall and substantiall presence of that or any other body, and consequently no Transub­stantiation, no Article of Faith, no Apostolique Tra­dition, as is pretended in the fift place.

Prayer in an vnknowne tongue.

PRayer and Seruice in an vnknown tongue] is a Tra­dition [Page 207] of the Romane Church, and reputed of e­quall authoritie with the Scripture, yet this doctrine wants Antiquitie, Vniuersality and Succession.

Touching Antiquitie] Cas­sander tells vs;Cassan. Li­turg. c. 28. The Canoni­call prayers, especially the words of Consecration of the body and blood of Christ, the ancient Fa­thers did so reade it, that all the people might vnderstand it, and say Amen. And it is the confession of Mr. Har­ding to Bishop Iewel: Iewel. in 3. A [...]t Diu [...]s 28. Verily in the primitiue Church, (pray­er and seruice in a knowne tongue) was necessary when faith was a learning, and there­fore the prayers were made then in a common tongue knowne to the people, for cause of their in­struction. [Page 208] And Card. Bellar­mine professeth,Bell. de ver. Dei. l. 2. c. 16 that all the people in the first ages, in the time of diuine Seruice did an­swere one Amen, as vnderstan­ding the Priest, and ioyning with him in prayer.

Touching Vniuersalitie] It was the custome of the ancient Church (as appea­reth by the Popes Decretals) whereby it was publiquely proclaimed:Decr. Greg. lib. tit. 31. de offic. Iud. Ord. ca. 14. Wee command that the Bishops of such cities and Diocesses, (where nations are mingled together) pro­uide meet men to minister the holy Seruice, according to the diuersitie of their maners and languages.

Touching Succession] Bel­larmine confesseth,Bell. de ver. Dei. l. 2. c. 16. that the custome of celebrating di­uine [Page 209] Seruice in a knowne tongue, whereby the people answered the Priest, conti­nued long in the East and West Churches. And it plainely appeares by the ancient Li­turgies, ascribed to Chryso­stome and Basil, (which are in vse at this day) the diuine Seruice in the Greeke Church was publiquely de­liuered in a known tongue. And agreeably to this cu­stome, the Armenians, Egyp­tians, Acthiopians, Muscouites, and generally all the Easterne Churches, doe consecrate the Sacrament in the lan­guage of their owne coun­trey.

This doctrine therefore wants the requisite condi­tions of Antiquitie, Vniuer­salitie, [Page 210] and Succession; and therefore can bee no Apo­stolique Tradition, no Ca­tholique doctrine, as is pre­tended in the sixt place.

Single life in the Clergie.

Single life in the Clergie] is reputed a Tradition in the Roman Church, and made of equall authoritie with the Scripture, yet this doctrine wants Antiquitie, Vniuersalitie and succession.

Touching Antiquitie,] Their owne Doctors tell vs,Dist. 84. § Cum in praeterito, & Nichol. Cu­san. ad Bo­em. Ep. 2. post aliquot tempora vi­sum fuit &c. Nec ratione nec autho­ritate pro­batur quòd absolutè lo­quēdo Ordo Sacerdota­lis vel in quantū est Ordo, vel in quantū sa­cer est, impeditivus est matrimonii siuè antè, si­uè post, se­clusis omni­bus legibus, stando tan­tū his quae à Christo & Apostolis haebentur. Caiet Tom 1. tract. 27. that vntill the time of Pope Syricius, that is to say, for the space welneere of foure hundred yeeres after [Page 211] Christ, it was lawfull for all Priests to marrie, without exception, neither vow, nor promise, nor Law, nor ordi­nance, nor other restraint being then to the contrary. And their learned Cardi­nan Cajetan professeth. If we stand onely to the Tradition of Christ and his Apostles, it can­not appeare by any authority or reason, that holy Order can bee any hindrance to marriage, ei­ther as it is an order, or as it is holy.

Touching Vniuersalitie] It is the confession of Pope Stephen the second. The Tra­dition of the Easterne Churches is one, the Tradition of the ho­ly Church of Rome is an other, for the Priests, Deacons, and Sub-deacons of the Easterne [Page 212] Churches are ioyned in Matri­mony. Dist. 31. Aliter. This confession is a­greeable to the Decree of the ancient Councell hol­den at Ancyra, where it was ordained,Hii, si post modū vxo­ores duxe­rint, in Mi­nisterio ma­neant. Con­cil. Ancyr. Can. 9. That Deacons, as many as be ordered, if at the time of receiuing their Orders, they made protestation, and said that they would marry, for that they finde not themselues able so to continue without Marriage, if they afterwards marry, let them continue in the Mini­sterie.

Touching Succession] This doctrine was not generally receiued, no not in the We­sterne Churches, a thou­sand yeeres after Christ: for in the time of King Ru­fus, Anselme Archbishop of Canterbury, in a Dialogue [Page 213] between the Master, and the Scholler, makes this Quaere: Desideramꝰ certificari tuâ solutio ne super vul gari in toto orbe, quaesti­ne; quae ab omnibꝰ quo­tidie venti­latur, (scil.) An liceat Presbyteris post acceptū Ordinē vx ores ducere. Anselm. Di al. Inquisiti­one primâ. Wee are desirous by your an­swere, to bee certified about this common question, that is now tossed through the world, and yet lyeth vndiscussed, (I mean) Whether a Priest being within Orders may marry a wife. Whereby it appeares, that the Law of Single life, was a poynt questionable, and not resolued for an Aposto­lique Tradition in the Ro­man Church for many ages. About 400 yeeres after,Bell. de scri Eccles. ab An. 1400. to 1500. p. 288. Pa­normitan, an Archbishop, a Cardinall, and a principall Proctor for the Pope, re­solues the question about marriage in this manner.Si clare cō ­stet de ma­trimonio Papa, tunc aut vxor in­ducetur ad cōtinentiā, aut si nolu­erit, reddaet debitum, & nihilo mi­nùs stet in Papatù, quià non re­pugnat sub­stantiae Pa­patus, seu Clericatus, nā et Petrꝰ habebat vx­orē cū pro­moueretur in Papam— vnde vide­mꝰ qd Pres­byteri Graeci sine peccato contrahunt matrimoni um. Extr. ce Elect. C. li­cet de vitād Abb. Patriarch. resp. 1. c. 21. If it may clearely appeare (saith hee) that the Pope hath a wife, [Page 214] (as hauing married her be­fore hee was Pope) then ei­ther his wife must bee perswa­ded to liue single, or if shee will not, let the Pope yeeld her ma­riage duties; and yet neuerthe­lesse remaine in the Popedome still. For marriage dutie is not contrary to the substance and Office, neither of Popedome, nor of Priesthood: for Peter had a wife when hee was promoted to bee Pope. As for the rule of single life, it was brought in by the Ordinance of the Church. Hence is it, that we see the Priests of Graecia being within Orders, doe marrie wiues, and wee see they doe it (sine peccato) without sinne, or breach of Law, either of God or man.

Looke vpon the confes­sion [Page 215] of the Greeke Patriarch since Luthers time. We allow (saith hee) marriage to Priests before Ordination. Looke vpon the confession of their owne Cardinall Caietan: Caiet. tract 27. test. Greg. de Val. disp. 9. q 5. It was held lawfull in the Easterne Church, to marrie after Ordi­nation. Adde to these the Traditions of other Coun­treys, as namely the Priests in India, in Armenia, in Syria, in Russia, in Cyprus, in Mus­couia, daily marry, and exe­cute their offices of Priest­hood, being married per­sons.

The Lawe therefore of single life wants the requi­site conditions of Antiquity, vniuersalitie, and Succession, and consequently can bee no Apostolicall Tradition, [Page 216] no Catholique Doctrine, as is pretended in the seuenth place.

Invocation and worship of Saints.

Invocation and Worship of Saints] Is reputed a Tra­dition Apostolicall, and is receiued for an Article of faith in the Roman Church: yet this faith, (notwithstan­ding their great braggs of Catholike doctrine) wants Antiquitie, Vniuersalitie, and Succession.

Apostoli scribere hoc in sacris li­teris nolue­runt ne am­bitiosi vide­rentur ho­norem istum sibi ipsis am­bire, ne sub cultu illo de­fūctorū Gē ­tilium cul­tum inferre viderentur. Ecch. Ench. cap. de ve­ner. Sanct.Touching Antiquitie] I appeale to their owne Ec­chius: The Apostles (saith he) would not insert this doctrine into the written word, lest they [Page 217] should seeme ambitiously to as­sume that honour to themselues, and vnder pretence of worship­ping the dead, might bring in the worship of the Gentiles. This doctrine then, as it wants a foundation in scrip­ture, (which a point of faith ought to haue) so likewise it is most certaine, for the same reason, the Apostles would not deliuer it by Tradition: for without doubt they would neuer teach that doctrine of faith by word of mouth, which they refused to publish by their writings. This is not onely probable, but certain true; and therefore Ignatius, the Apostle St. Iohns Schol­ler, who could not bee ig­norant of a poynt of Faith, [Page 218] teacheth the virgins of that time another lesson, he doth not teach them to direct their prayers and supplica­tions to Saints and Angels, but to the Trinitie (onely.) O yee Virgins (saith hee) in your prayers set Christ (onely) before your eyes, Virgines so­lum Christū in precibus vestris antè oculos habe­te et Patrē illiꝰ, illumi­nata à spi­ritu. Ignat. ad Phila­delph. and his Father, being enlightned by the Spirit. And the Church of Rome being conscious of such an ancient Euidence against their Angel-worship, in the Greeke Originall haue tur­ned [...] into [...] Prayers into Soules. Ignat Lugd impress. An. 1572.

Touching Vniuersalitic] Iraeneus Bishop of Lyons, tels vs, that in his dayes, the Church per vniuersum mun­dum, Ecclesia per vniuersum mundum— nec Inuoca­tionibꝰ An­gelicis facit aliquid, nec &c. Iren. l. 2. c. 57. throughout the whole world, doth nothing by Inuoca­tions [Page 219] of Angels, nor by Incan­tations, nor any wicked curio­sitie, but decently, comely and manifestly directeth her pray­ers to God which hath made all, and calls vpon the Name of our Lord Iesus. And Tertul­lian, a learned Father in the Church of Africa, makes this open profession of his faith.Quacunque hominis & Caesaris vota sunt haec ab alio orare, non possum, quā à quo scio me con­sequaturū, quoniam et ipse est qui so [...] praesta [...] et ego fa­mulus eius qui eū solū obseruo. In Apol. ca. 30. Whatsoeuer are the wi­shes of man or Prince, these things I can aske of no other, then of him, from whom I know I shall obtaine them, because hee alone it is, who performeth these things, and I am his seruant, who depend vpon him alone.

Touching Succession] In Origens time this Trent faith was vnknowne: for when Celsus the Philosopher (be­gan to play the Romanists) [Page 220] and said of Angels: They belong to God, and in that re­spect wee are to put our trust in them, and make oblations to them, according to the Lawes, and pray vnto them, and that they may bee fauourable vnto vs. Origen makes him this answere:Origen. li. 8 contr. Celsū Away with Celsus his counsell, saying, Wee must pray to Angels; let vs not so much as affoord any little au­dience to it. For we must pray to him alone, who is God ouer all; and wee must pray to the Word of God his onely begot­ten, and the first borne of all creatures, and wee must intreat him, that hee as high Priest, would present our prayer (when it is come to him) vnto his God, and our God, and vnto his Fa­ther, and the Father of them [Page 221] that frame their life according to the word of God.

In the succeeding Age, the ancient Councell of La­odicea decreed,Conc. Lao­dic. Can 36. Wee ought not to leaue the Church of God, and invocate Angels. And the Roman Church being like­wise conscious of this Eui­dence against their Invoca­tion of Angels, haue turned Angelos into Angulos: say­ing,Merlin. fol. 68. Edit. 1530 & Crabbe fol. 226 Edit. 1538. Wee must not leaue the Church of God, and haue re­course to Angles (or corners.) This Councell was called in the yeere 364, in Laodi­cea, a capitall Citie in Phry­gia, where this Angel-wor­ship was frequent, wherein they had Oratories & Chappels to pray to St. Michael, the chiefe Captain of Gods [Page 222] hoste among them. This Canon of the Councell, Photius doeth note to haue been made against the An­gelites, Phot. No­mocanon. tit. 12. c. 9. Aug. de hae­res. cap. 39. those heretiques that were inclined to the worship of Angels. And Theodoret, a Greeke Father, more parti­cularly makes twice menti­on of this Canon, and de­clares the meaning of it in these words.Theod. in Colos. 3. & in Col. 2. Whatsoeuer yee doe in word or deed, doe all in the name of the Lord Iesus, gi­uing thankes to God, and the Father by him. — The Synode of Laodicea also following this rule, and desiring to heale that old disease, made a law, that they should not pray vnto Angels, nor forsake our Lord Iesus Christ. Cardinall Baronius is not well pleased with [Page 223] Theodoret, for deliuering his opinion touching the sense of that councell.Ex hic vi­deas Theo­doretū haud foelicitèr (eius pa [...]e dictum sit assecutum esse Pauli verborum sensum. Baron. An. Tom. 1. An. 60. By this you may see (saith he) that Theo­doret did not well vnderstand the meaning of Saint Pauls wordes. But that which is most obseruable, the pre­tence which the heretiques made in those dayes for their Angel-worship, is the chiefe reason alleadged for their doctrine of faith by the Romanists in these times.Ambr. in Rom. cap. 1. We haue recourse (say they) to Angels and Saints, with deuotion and humilitie, that by their intercession, God may be more fauorable vnto vs. Now Saint Ambrose com­plaines, that the Heathen I­dolaters, to couer their shame for their neglecting of God, [Page 224] were wont to vse this miserable excuse, that by these they might goe to God, as by Officers wee goe to the King. But heare what answere hee makes to the vanitie of such worship­pers:Ambr. ad Rom. ca. 1. Goe to, is any man so mad, or so vnmindfull of his saluation, as to giue the Kings honour to an Officer? — For therefore doe men goe to the King by Tribunes or Officers, because the King is but a man, and knoweth not to whem to commit the state of the Com­mon wealth: but to procure the fauour of God, from whom no­thing is hid, (for hee knoweth the workes of all men) wee need no spokesman, but a deuout mind: for wheresoeuer such a one shall speake vnto him, hee will answere him. But of all [Page 225] the Fathers, Saint Chryso­stome is most plentifull in refuting this pretended rea­son, of Intercession by Saints and Angels:Chrysost. Serm. 7. de Paenitent. When thou hast need to sue vnto men, (saith hee) thou art forced first to deale with doore-keepers, and to intreate parasites and flatte­rers, and to goe a long way. But with God there is no such mat­ter, without an Intercessor he is intreated, without money, with­out cost he yeeldeth to the pray­er. Lastly, for an example hee sets before vs the wo­man of Canaan: Chrys. in dimissione Chananaeae. tom, 5. Edit. Sauil. p. 195. Shee intrea­teth not sames (saith hee) shee beseecheth not Iohn, neither doth shee come to Peter, but breake through the whole com­pany of them, saying, I haue no need of a Mediator, but taking [Page 226] repentance with me for a spokes­man, I come to the Fountaine it selfe. For this cause did he de­scend, for this cause did he take flesh, that I might haue the boldnesse to speake vnto him: I haue no need of a Mediatour, haue thou mercy vpon me.

It is true, that about this time Inuocation of Saints was practised by some par­ticular persons, but neuer till this later age receiued for an Article of faith. Gre­gorie Nazianzene was one of the first, who called vnto, rather then called vpon the spirits of dead men, in his Invectiues which hee wrote against Iulian the Empe­ror, [...]. makes this Invocation, Heare, O thou soule of Great Constantine, (if that thou hast [Page 227] any vnderstanding of these things.) And in his funerall Oration, which hee made vpon his sister Gorgonia, hee speaketh vnto her in this manner:Greg. Naz. Orat. 11 in Gorgon. If thou hast any care of the things done by vs; if ho­ly soules receiue this honour from God, that they haue any feeling of such things as these, receiue this Oration of ours, in­stead of many, and before many funerall obsequies. The first Invocations then were but Apostrophes at the Tombes of Saints, and those also deliuered doubtingly, with this supposition, If thou hea­rest, if thou doest vnderstand. Besides, Invocations at first were but wishes, and no prayers. But if any (saieth Cassander) would haue such [Page 228] compellations to bee taken also for a direct speaking to them, Cass. Ep. 19 ad Ioh. Molinaeum p. 1109. Idē Schol. in Hymn. Ec­cles operū. pag. 242. I doe not gainesay it; notwith­standing I would thinke that a tacit condition ought to bee vn­derstood in such an intimation, as was vsed by Gregorie Nazi­anzene, that is, (if they doe heare, if they doe vnderstand) or otherwise, that is to say, All yee Saints pray vnto God for me, should import as much, as if it were said, Would to God that all the Saints should pray to God for me.

But that which is remark­able, and as I conceiue, is worthy of all mens obser­seruation: Our aduersaries confesse, there was no Invo­cation of Saints before the comming of Christ, be­cause they were in Lymbo, [Page 129] and did not see God: and therefore, it is to bee noted, Bellar. de Sanct. Beat. lib. 1. c. 19. (saith Bellarmine) Because the Saints which dyed before the comming of Christ, did not enter into heauen, neither did see God, nor could ordinarily take knowledge of the prayers of such as should petition vnto them: therefore it was not the vse in the Old Testament to say, Saint Abraham, pray for mee. If this were the onely rea­son, why Invocation was not vsed in the old Law, for the same reason wee may confidently auer they ought not to produce the testimo­nies of ancient Fathers since the New: for most of the Greeke and Latine Fathers, did hold that the faithfull after death remained till the [Page 230] day of Resurrection, in cer­taine receptacles of Rest, without attaining the bles­sed vision of God.Iren. lib. 5. Aug. Euchi. c. 108. Hyll. in Psál. 120. Ambr. de Cain & A­bel. l. 2. c. 2. Bet n. Ser. 3. de omnibus Sanctis. Iraeneus termes them, Inuisible holds, Saint Austen, Hidden Recepta­cles; Saint Hyllarie, The bosom of Rest; Ambrose, Places of su­spence; Bernard, Atria, Out­ward Porches, or Courts. And for a further testimonie of these and other particulars, their learned Stapleton pro­fesseth,Tot illi et tā celebres an­tiqui patres Tertullia­nus &c. hu­ic sententiae (quae nūc in Concilio Florentino magnâ de mū conqui­sitione factà vt dogma fidei defini­ta est) quod iustorum a­nimae antè diē iudicii Dei visione fruuntur, non sunt as­sensi, sed sententiam contrariam tradiderūt Stapl def [...]s. Ecclesiast. authorit. cont. Whi­tak. l. 1. c. 2. That many famous ancient Fathers, (as namely) Tertullian, Irenaeus, Origen, Chrysostome, Theodoret, Oecu­menius, Theophylact, Ambrose, Clemens, Romanus, and Ber­nard, did not assent vnto this Sentence, (which now in the Councell of Florence, was at length, after much disputing, [Page 231] defined as doctrine of faith) that the soules of the righteous enioy the sight of God before the day of Iudgement; but did deliuer the contrary sentence thereunto. From hence ther­fore I may infallibly con­clude, that such as held that the Saints were not admit­ted to the sight of God, could not well hold, that men should pray vnto them in such manner as the Ro­manists vse now to doe; be­cause the Saints not enioy­ing the sight of God, are not able ordinarily to take notice of the prayers that are put vp vnto them.

Saint Austen tells vs, that in his time it was a great question,Respondeo magnā qui­dē esse quae­stionum — verum vel quatenùs, vel quomo­dò ea quae­circà nos a­guntur, no­uerint spi­ritus mor­tuorū. Aug. in Psal. 108. Enarrat. 1. (and not easily to bee determined) Whether at [Page 232] all, or how farre, or after what manner, the spirits of the dead did know the things that con­cerned vs heere. And Ansel­mus Laudunensis, in his inter­lineal glosse vpon that text; Abraham is ignorant of vs, and Israel knoweth vs not, Esa. 63. noteth, that Saint Austen saith, that the dead, euen the Saints, doe not know what the liuing doe, no not their owne sonnes.

Non propriè inuocamus Sanctos sed Deū, non e­nim aut Pe­trus aut Paulus au­dit Inuocā tes, sed gra­tiae quam habent (viz. apud Deum Resp Patr ad Ger. c. 21Adde to these testimo­nies, the confession of the Greeke Church: Wee doe not properly inuocate Saints, but God: for neither Peter, nor Paul, heare any of those that inuocate them, but the grace and gift that they haue, accor­ding to the promise; I am with you vntill the end of the world: [Page 233] meaning, (as it may be con­ceiued) that the Saints heare not them that invocate them; but Christ the Son of God, who was giuen vnto them, and promised to bee with them vnto the worlds end. Adde to these opini­ons, the sayings of their owne Schoolemen:Scotus in 4. dist 45. quaest. 4. Pet. Lomb. Sentent lib. 4 dist. 45. Scotus saith, it is probable; Peter Lumbard saith, It is not in­credible, that the Saints should heare our prayers. Adde to the vncertaintie of the Fa­thers opinions; some did vse wishes, and compellati­ons, not Invocations: others denyed the Saints could take notice of their prayers, by reason they did not as yet see God; others doub­ted whether they did heare [Page 234] when they were called vp­on;Altissid. in Sūm. part. 4. l 3. tract. 7. c. de orat. quaest 6. Biel. in Cā. Missa Sect. 30. others, (as namely Gui­lielmus Altisidorensis, and Ga­briel Biel) resolued, that nei­ther the Saints doe pray for vs, neither are wee to pray to them. These, (I say) and the like reasons consi­dered, I may safely con­clude, that Invocation of Saints wants Antiquitie, Vni­uersality, and Succession; and that opinions doubtfull and vncertaine, reasons probable and not incredible, are no sure grounds for the saluation of a Christian; and there­fore it is no Article of faith, no Catholique doctrine, no Apostolique Tradition, as is pretended in the eighth place.

Thus briefly I haue shew­ed [Page 235] you, that the Trent Tra­ditions, (which are receiued with the same reuerence as the Scriptures themselues) want the proper markes of their owne Church. I haue shewed you likewise, that the Greeke Church in the principall poynts of con­trouersie, is altogether diffe­rent from the Romane, and in the chiefest of those points agreeth wholly with the Protestants. And for this cause the Greeke Patri­arch congratulates with the Reformed Churches in this manner:Nunc Deo omnis gra­tia authori gratias agi­mus, et la­tamur cum multis aliis tum nō mi­nimum in hoc quod in multis ve­stra doctri­na cum no­stra conso­nat Eccle­sia. Patr. resp 2. in init. & resp. 1. p. 148. We giue thankes to God the Authour of all grace, and wee reioyce with many o­thers, but especially in this, that in many things your doctrine is agreeable to our Church. [Page 136] And certainly, we likewise haue great cause to reioyce in our owne behalfe and theirs, that the Greeke Church hath continued the truth of our doctrine in all ages, which plainely shewes the Antiquitie and Visibi­litie of our Church, in the affirmatiue poynts which we maintaine, and the No­ueltie of the Romane, in those Negatiue opinions, which we condemne.

If we looke beyond Lu­ther, we shall easily discerne, that the Muscouites, Armeni­ans, Egyptians, Aethiopians, and diuers other countreys and Nations, (all members of the Greeke Church) taught our Doctrine from the Apostles time to ours. [Page 239] This is so true an Euidence in our behalfe, that Bellar­mine, as it were in disdaine of the Churches,Bell. de ver. Dei. l 2. ca. vlt. in fine. makes this answere: We are no more mo­ued with the examples of Mus­couites, Armenians, Egyptians and Aethiopians, then with the examples of Lutherans, or A­nabaptists, and Caluinists: for they are either heretiques, or Schismatiques. So that all Churches (be they neuer so Catholique and ancient) if they subscribe not to the now Romane Faith, are ey­ther schismaticall or here­ticall.

But let these men obserue what Rules they list, let them brag of Antiquitie, V­niuersalitie and Succession; let them reiect the confessions [Page 238] of all Christian Churches but their owne, yet shal they neuer be able to proue those vnwritten Traditions Apo­stolique, and of equall au­thority with the Scriptures, which contrary the doctrine of the Apostles, or by con­sequence ouerthrowe the foundation of the written Word. If the Apostle teach vs to pray with the spirit, 1. Cor. 14. and to pray with the vnderstanding also: how can prayer in an vnknowne tongue, without vnderstanding, be prooued a Tradition Apostolicall? If the Apostle teach vs by the written Word, that the Communion in both kinds extend to all beleeuers, by the general words of Christ: Drinke yee all of this. How [Page 239] can the Communion in one kinde bee tearmed a Tradi­tion Apostolical, which im­poseth the contrary on the Non Conficient Priest, and the lay people, Drinke ye none of this? If the holy Spirit dictate by the mouth of an Apostle: Search the Scrip­tures: how can that doctrine be said to bee Apostolicall, which inioynes the contra­ry to the lay people, Search not the Scriptures? If the written Word proclaime it for an Apostolike doctrine:Vtrum (que) est malū et nu­bere et vri imò [...]eius est nubere quic quid recla­mēt aduer­sarii &c. Bell. de Mo­nach. l. 2. c. 30. It is better marrie then burne: how can that vnwritten Word bee tearmed a Tra­dition Apostolicall, which teacheth the contrary: It is better for a Priest to burne then marry? If an Angel from [Page 240] heauen proclaime of the re­all presence of Christs bo­dy: He is risen, he is not heere: and the Apostle declares it for an Article of beliefe, The Heauens containe him till his second comming. How can the corporall and reall pre­sence of Christ in the Sa­crament, be a Tradition A­postolicall, which affirmeth that Christs body is con­teined in the heauens, and in a Pix at one and the same time? If the Communion of the body and bloud of Christ, be a common vnion of Priest and people, and by the Apostles written Word Wee are all partakers of one Bread, and one Cup: how can Priuate Masse bee tearmed a Tradition Apostolicall, [Page 241] wherein the Priest receiues the Bread and Cup alone without the people? If God himselfe forbid by his Morall Law, the worship­ping of Images; and the same Lawe stood in force with Christ and his Apo­stles; how can that doctrine be made a poynt of Faith, and termed a Tradition A­postolicall, which on the contrary giues adoration to Images? Lastly, if an Angel from heauen forbids the worshipping of Angels by a particular instance in him­selfe: Worship not mee, for I am thy fellow seruant: How can it be reputed a Traditi­on Apostolicall, and an Ar­ticle of Faith,Art. 8. that the Saints reigning with Christ, are to bee [Page 242] worshipped and prayed vnto? These Papal Traditions vn­written, are different, if not flatly opposite to the Word written; and therefore I will say with Tertullian, who an­swered the heretiques in his dayes:Tert. praesc. advers. hae­res. c. 32. Their very doctrine it selfe being compared with the Apostolike, by the diuersity and contrarietie thereof, will pro­nounce, that it had neither any Apostle for an Authour, nor any man Apostolique. Now if a­ny Romanist shall take that poore exception, and say their Tenets are not flat con­trary to the Scriptures; let him take his answere from Saint Chrysostome: Non dixit si contraria annutiaue­rint, aut si totū Euan­gelium sub verterint, sed si vel paulū Euā ­gelizaue­rint prarer Euangeliū qd accepistis etiāsi quid­vis labefa­ctauerint. Anathema sint. Chrys. in Galat. c. 1 & Aug. in Ioh. Tra. 98 Saint Paul teacheth not (saith hee) if any man preach contrary to the Go­spell, or ouerthrow the whole [Page 243] Gospell; but if they preach any little thing besides the Gospell hee hath receiued, if hee ouer­throw any thing, whatsoeuer it be, let him be accursed. I say therefore, if this or the like vnwritten Traditions bee found praeterquàm, or contra­quàm, either besides or con­trary to the Scriptures (as certainly most of their Tra­ditions are) I say, it is im­possible to reconcile them for Apostolike Traditions, and consequently more ab­surd to equall them with the Scriptures, and make them a partiall rule of faith: for Although (saith Tertulli­an, Tertul. de praesc [...]. c. 26.) the Apostles did deliuer some things vnto their domesti­call friends (as I may call them) yet wee must not beleeue, that [Page 244] they deliuered any such things as should bring in another rule of Faith, different and repug­nant to that, which they gene­rally propounded in publique, as though they had preached one Lord in the Church, another in their lodging.

To leaue therefore a cer­tainty for an vncertaintie, to forsake the written Word, which is the safest and surest rule of beliefe; for vnwritten Traditions which haue nei­ther Antiquitie for their lea­der, nor Vniuersality for their assurance, nor Succession for their euidence; this I say, is Via dubia, a doubtfull and vncertaine way, this is Via Deuia, a wandring and By-way.

SECT. IX. The Scriptures are a certaine, safe, and euident direction to the right way of Saluation; and consequently, to ground Faith vpon vnwritten Tra­ditions, is an obscure, vncer­taine, and dangerous By-way.

I Confesse it for a trueth, that in the first ages of the world, the Ancients had the knowledge of God without writing, and their memories, by reason of their long liues, were Regi­sters, instead of Bookes: but afterwards, when God had taken the posteritie of Iacob to bee his peculiar people, [Page 246] the liues of men were short­ned; and therefore hee gaue them their lawes in writing, which writing was so true and perfect,Non desunt aliqui Ca­tholicorum qui negant nullū fuisse Traditionē non scriptā apud Iudaeos Bell. de ver­bo Dei non scrip. l. 4. c. 8 that some Roma­nists confesse, the Iewes had no­thing pertaining to the know­ledge and seruice of God, that was not written. And as in the creation of the world, before the Sun was made, the light was sustained and spread abroad by the incomprehensible power of God; yet after the Sun was created, God conuei­ed the whole light of the world into the body of the Sun: so that though the Moone and Starres should giue light, yet they should shine with no other light, but what they re­ceiued [Page 247] from the Sunne; Euen so in the constituti-of the Church, howsoe­uer God at first preserued and continued the know­ledge of his truth, by im­mediate reuelation from himselfe to some chosen men, by whose ministerie hee would haue the same communicated to the rest, yet when hee gaue his word in writing, he con­ueyed into the bodie of the Scriptures, the whole light of his Church, so that albeit there should be Pastors & Teachers ther­in, to shine as starres, to giue light to others, yet they should giue no other light, but what by the beames of the written [Page 248] Law was cast vpon them. And that wee might haue good warranty for the writ­ten Word, God himselfe shewed the first way by his owne example, who with his owne finger wrote the Decalogue in tables of stone; and (saith Moses) The Tables was the worke of God, Exod. 32.16 and the writing was the writing of God vpon the Tables. And as God was the first Author of wri­ting in the old Law: so our Sauiour Christ, God and Man, taught the same lesson by his owne example and direction in the New: For when the Disciples wrote (saith Austen) what Christ shewed and said vnto them, Cum illi scripserunt, qua ille o­stendit et dixit, ne­quaquā di­cendum est, quod ipse nō scripserit, &c. Aug. de consens Euangel. lib. 1. c. 35. it is not to be said that he did not write, be­cause the members wrought that [Page 249] which they learned by the indi­ting of the Head. For whatso­euer he would haue vs to reade of the things which he did and said, he gaue in charge to them, as his hands to write the same. And thus one and the same Spirit, that prescribed the old Law to Moses, gaue also expresse charge to the E­vangelist Saint Iohn: Scribe, Reuel. 1.11.19. write these things. And last­ly, the reason of this wri­ting, Saint Luke renders to Theophilus, Luke 1.4. That thou mightst know the certaintie of those things wherein thou hast beene instructed. Now as things written are of longer con­tinuance, and better assu­rance, whereby we haue the certaintie of our faith and doctrine: so likewise by that [Page 250] certainty we inioy the more safetie: and for that cause the Apostle Saint Paul tells the Philippians, that which hee deliuered by word of mouth being present:Phil. 3.1. To write the same things (saith he) to me it is not grieuous, but for you it is safe. And this may be a good comfort for all beleeuing Protestants, that wee haue these two be­nefits of the written Word, (by the doctrine of two A­postles) Certaintie and Saftie.

Scriptura Regula cre­dendi cer­tissima tu­tissima (que) est. Bell. de verbo Dei. lib. 1. cap. 2 Euseb. li. 2. cap. 14.This doctrine was right­ly obserued, and earnestly pursued by the true beleeuers in the Primitiue Church, in so much, as it is obserued by Eusebius, that the faithfull who had heard the preaching of Saint Peter, not thinking that [Page 251] sufficient, nor contented with the doctrine of that diuine prea­ching vnwritten, most earnest­ly intreated Marke, that hee would leaue them in writing, the Commentaries (or records) of the doctrine which they had deliuered vnto them br word; and ceased not till they had per­swaded him thereto. Now it is reported (saith hee) when the Apostle vnderstood this to haue beene done by the reuelation of the holy Ghost, he ioyed much in the desire of those men, & by his authority warranted this Gospel in writing to the reading of the Church. Here was a memo­rable example, both for the Certaintie, and Safetie of the Christian Faith; the faithfull heare the Word of God, yet fearing the vncer­taintie [Page 252] of that which might bee deliuered vpon report, from hand to hand, they in­treat Marke the Scholler and follower of Peter, that hee would commit the same to writing: this was perfor­med accordingly, and Saint Peter ioyed in the perfor­mance of it; and withall te­stified by his approbation, that their good motion proceeded from the Holy Ghost.

In like manner you shall obserue, as the Apostle St. Paul wrote those things which he deliuerd by word of mouth to the Philippians: so likewise hee deliuers the same things to the Corinthi­ans, 1. Cor. 15.3. which hee receiued accor­ding to the Scriptures. And [Page 253] from hence wil arise a third benefit, (which is the grand point in question) The Scrip­tures are alone sufficient with­out the helpe of Traditions: for that which Saint Paul hath testified of the Church at Corinth and Philippi, the same Nicephorus expresseth more particularly in these words:Niceph. Ec­cles. Hist. lib. 2. ca. 34. What Saint Paul being present, taught by word of mouth a­mongst the Corinthians, Ephesi­ans, Galathians, Colossians, Phi­lippians, Thessalonians, Iewes, Romans, and many other per­sons, whereunto the holy Ghost sent him, and whom hee begate in the faith of Christ, the same things in his absence bee com­pendiously reuoketh into their memory by his Epistles written vnto them. If therefore St. [Page 254] Paul set downe in his Epi­stles all that doctrine which hee deliuered by word of mouth to those seuerall Churches, & withall taught that doctrine which he recei­ued according to the Scriptures, it will follow of necessitie, that all things necessary to saluation, are contained in the Scriptures: for hee wit­nessed of himselfe: I haue not shunned to declare (all) the Councell of God. Acts 20.27.

Let vs appeale to him, touching the sufficiencie of the Scriptures: First, hee exhorts Timothy, 2. Tim. 3.14 to continue in those things which hee had learned, and had been assured of: neither doth he tell him, hee was assured of Traditi­ons, but plainly expresseth [Page 255] in that place his meaning of the Holy Scriptures; and that it might appeare the Scriptures were not denyed by the Apostles to children and ignorant per­sons, (as it is now vsed in the Church of Rome) hee testifieth in his behalfe, that from a child hee had knowen the holy Scriptures: Verse 15. and that it might yet further appeare the Scriptures were suffici­ent for his sauing know­ledge, without the helpe of Traditions, he protesteth to him,Ibidem. that they were able to make him wise vnto saluation. And lastly, lest it might bee thought a particular instru­ction to Timothie alone, and not to the rest of the faith­full, he proclaimes the writ­ten [Page 256] Word as a generall rule, and conclusion for all be­leeuers:Vers. 16.17. All Scripture is gi­uen by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for re­proofe, for correction, for in­struction in righteousnesse, that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished to all good workes. So that, if you re­gard the authoritie of the written word, it came from God by inspiration; if the vse of it, it teacheth, corre­cteth, improueth; if the end and perfection of it, that the man of God might bee throughly furnished to eue­ry good work. Now what­soeuer is so profitable vnto all these ends, to make a man wise vnto saluation; must needs bee sufficient of [Page 257] it selfe, and the rather, be­cause there is nothing can bee wished for, either to soundnesse and sinceritie of Faith, or to integritie and godlinesse of life, that is, to mans perfection, & the way of saluation, which, the Scrip­ture giuen by inspiration of God doeth not teach the faith­full seruants of Christ: nay more, if that which is writ­ten, bee not sufficient by the beliefe whereof we may at­taine to eternall life; with­out doubt, Saint Iohn, the beloued Disciple of Christ would neuer haue told vs:Iohn 20 31. These things are written, that wee may beleeue, and beleeuing we may haue eternall life.

I proceed to the examina­tion of the ancient Fathers, [Page 258] that out of the mouth of two or three witnesses, [...]. Athan. orat cont. Gen. in init. Sufficiebat quidē cre­dentibꝰ Dei sermo, qui in aures no­stras Euan­gelistae testi­monie-trās­fusus est? quid enim in eodem Sacramēto salutis hu­manae non continetur? aut quid fit qd reliquū est, aut ob­seurum? Plena sunt omnia vt à pleno et perfecto facta. Hil. de Trin. l. 2 Tert. contr. Hermo. c. 22 that written Word may be esta­blished.

Athanasius] the holy Fa­ther tells vs: The holy Scrip­tures giuen by inspiration of God, are of themselues suffici­ent to the discouery of the truth. And as concerning the ful­nesse of all truth, which is reuealed in the Scriptures. Saint Hillary assures vs, that in his dayes The word of God did suffice the beleeuers; yea, (saith he) what is there concer­ning mans saluation, that is not conteined in the Word of the E­vangelist? What doth it want? What is there obscure in it? All things there are full and perfect. And Tertullian him­selfe professeth, that hee ho­noureth [Page 259] the fulnes of the Scrip­tures, and denounceth a woe to Hermogenes the heretike, if hee take ought from those things which are written, or ad­deth to them. And Saint Cy­rill more expressely,Non omnia qua Domi­nus fecit conscript [...] sunt sed qua scribentes sufficere pu­turunt tam ad mores quam ad dogmata, vt rectâ fide et operibus et virtute ru­tilantes ad regnum coelorū per­veniamus. Cyr. in Ioh. li. 12 c. 68. In iis quae apertè in Scripturâ posita sunt, inueniun­tur illa om­nia quae cō ­ueninient fidem mo­res (que) viuen­di. Aug. de doct. Christ. lib. 2. cap. 9. All things (saith he) which Christ did, are not written, but those things are written, which the Writers thought sufficient, as well touching conuersation, as Doctrine, that shining with right faith, and vertuous workes, wee may attaine to the Kingdome of Heauen. And Saint Austen giues his con­sent with the rest of the ho­ly and ancient Fathers: that In those things which are layd downe plainely in the Scrip­tures, all those things are found which appertaine to Faith, and [Page 260] direction of life. And thus by the testimonies of the blessed Apostles, and the consent of holy Fathers, we haue certaintie, we haue safe­tie, wee haue assurance, wee haue all sufficiencie in the Scriptures.

Surely the ancient Fa­thers did little dreame, that the precious stones and tim­ber, on which the Church of Rome was first built, should bee repayred in her decaying age, with strawe and stubble of vnwritten doctrines, and vnknowne Traditions. Saint Cyprian, that blessed Martyr, was so farre from allowing Eccle­siasticall Traditions for a poynt of Faith, that hee makes this Quaere: Whence [Page 261] is this Tradition? Vnde ista Traditio? vtrumne de Dominica, &c ea enim facienda es­se qua scrip­ta sunt De­us testatur. Cypr Epist. 74. ad Pōp. is it deriued from the Lords authoritie, or from the precepts of the Apo­stles? for God willeth vs to doe those things which are written. But this quaere is so distasted by Bellarmine, that to this short demand, hee returnes this sharpe answere:Respond [...]o Cyprianum haec scrip­sisse eū erro­rem suum tuer [...] veilet & ideò si more erran­tium tunc ratiocina­retur &c. B [...] [...] vet Dei li 4. ca. 11. Cyprian spake this when hee thought to defend his owne errour, and therefore it is no maruell, if hee erred in so reasoning: yet wee may see what time and er­rours haue brought to passe, those authorities of Scrip­ture which the heretiques pretended for their vnwrit­ten Traditions in the anci­ent Church, are the very same which the Romanists at this day assume in be­halfe of their Traditions. [Page 262] Irenaeus tels vs, that in his time the heretiques com­plained,Iren. l. 3. c. 2 that they who were ignorant of Traditions, could not find the trueth in the Scrip­tures, for the truth was not de­liuered by writing, but by word of mouth. And for proofe of their assertion, they cite the words of Saint Paul. We speake wisedome amongst them that be perfect. 1. Cor. 2. Bellarmine al­ledgeth in this very Text,Bell. de ver. Dei. l. 4. c. 8. to proue, that many mysteries require silence, that it is vn­meet they should be explai­ned by the Scriptures, and therefore are onely learned by Traditions. Tertullian tells vs, that the heretiques confessed indeed, Tertul. de praescip. ad­vers. haeres. cap. 25. that the Apo­stles were ignorant of nothing, — but they say the Apostles re­uealed [Page 263] not all things vnto all men. And for proofe, they cite the Word written: O Timothy, keepe that which is committed to thy trust. In like manner Saint Austen tels vs, that All foolish heretiques doe seeke to colour their deuices by the pretext of this Gospell; Aug. in Ioh. Tract. 97. & 96. I haue yet many things to say vn­to you, but ye cannot beare them now. But (saith hee) seeing Christ himselfe hath been silent of those things, who of vs can say they are these and these? or if hee dare say it, how doth hee prooue it? These and the like places are cited by Bellar­mine, and the Romanists,Bell de ver­vo Dei. li. 4. cap. 5. for the honour and authoritie of their vnwritten Traditi­ons: nay more, they are vr­ged with such eagernesse in [Page 164] defence of their doctrine, that some of them publike­ly professed. Si Paulus ille Tharsensis, &c. Fauour. An­tiq. pag. 275 If that same Paul of Tharsus, the chiefe in­strument of diuine Philosophie, should condemne any Traditi­ons of the Catholike (Roman) Church, I would confidently prescribe him; abandon him, pronounce Anathema, with direfull execrations against this Saul.

Waltram Bishop of Naum­burg, a principall member of the Romane Church, and conuersant amongst the Monks of former ages, giues the reason which occasio­ned the Romanists of these later times to stand vpon iu­stification of their Traditi­ons. About the time the [Page 265] Deuill was let loose, (that is to say, a thousand yeeres af­ter Christ) certaine Monkes (saith he) for the vpholding of Pope Hildebrands facti­on, desired other doctrines, Alienas do­ctrinas ap­petunt & magisteria humana in­stitutionis inducunt. Lib. de vnit. Eccles. p. 233. and brought in masteries of humane Institution: and to preuent the knowledge of the truth, they permitted not yong men in their Monasteries, to studie the sauing knowledge (of the Scri­ptures,) to the end, Vt inde in­genium nu­triatur si­liquis daemo­niorum qua sunt con­suetudines humanarū Traditionū Ibid. p. 228. that their rude wit might bee nourished with the huskes of deuils, which are the customs of humane Tra­ditions, that being accustomed to such filth, they might not taste how sweet the Lord was. This learned Author giues vs to vnderstand, that the vnwritten doctrines in the Roman Church, were but [Page 266] filth and huskes of Deuils, which without doubt the heretiques of former ages had scattered and left be­hind them. And thus the Priests and Fryars haue re­ceiued the doctrine of Tra­ditions from the Monks, the Monkes from the heretikes, and both ioyntly sympa­thize with the heretike Eu­tyches in the generall Coun­cell of Chalcedon, and make one and the same generall acclamation.Concil. Cha. Act. 1 Thus I haue re­ceiued of my forefathers, thus I haue beleeued, in this faith I was baptized and signed, in the same haue I liued till this day, and in the same I wish to die.

I speake not this to de­cline the authoritie of Apo­stolique Traditions: for I [Page 267] know well, the same Apo­stle, who tels, the Scriptures are able to make vs wise vnto saluation, giues also this war­ning to the Church of Thes­salonica: stand fast, 2. Thess. 2.15. and hold the Traditions which yee haue been taught, whether by word or our Epistle. Here the Apo­stle calls his owne written Epistle a Tradition; and for ought can appeare, that which hee taught by word of mouth, was but the word written; (for a man may teach one and the same do­ctrine diuers waies) but what Protestant, I pray, did euer refuse to hold the traditions which Saint Paul and the rest of the Apostles taught by word of mouth? Wee generally confesse, that they [Page 268] were of equall authoritie with the Word written; but who can tell vs what Tra­ditions those were, if they were not written? We may grant without preiudice to our cause, that Saint Paul deliuered more to the Thes­salonians by word of mouth then was conteined in that Epistle (although the words alleadged, inforce no such thing,) for wee take not vp­on vs to maintaine that the first Epistle to the Thessalo­nians contained all the do­ctrine to saluation; but doth it therefore follow, that he deliuered more vnto them then was contained in the whole Scriptures?

When Paul came to Thes­salonica, three Sabbath dayes [Page 269] (saith the Text) hee reasoned with them out of the Scrip­tures: He taught them,Acts 17.2. that it behooued Christ to suffer, and rise againe from the dead, and that Iesus was Christ: and af­ter that,Acts 26.22. hee witnesseth both to small and great, saying none o­ther things then those which the Prophets and Moses did say should come. Therfore what­soeuer hee deliuered to the Thessalonians, although it be not found in his written Epistle, yet it must needs be contained in the holy Scrip­tures. Againe, if the Thes­salonians had insisted onely vpon vnwritten Traditions, yet the Apostle would by no meanes approoue of it: for hee professeth that the Iewes of Beraea, were more [Page 270] noble, then those of Thessa­lonica, and there he giues the reason for it:Acts 17.11. In that they re­ceiued the Word with all readi­nesse of mind, and searched the Scriptures daily, whether those things were so. And hence we haue an example of the vndoubted Traditions of the Apostles themselues, which were examined by the touchstone of the Scrip­tures: but no man can shew me that euer the Scriptures were examined by vnwrit­ten Traditions.

We say therefore that all vnwritten Traditions which concerne the saluation of the beleeuer, are either im­mediately, or at least by sound inference, deriued from the Scriptures, and [Page 271] those also haue a manifest and perpetuall testimony of the Primitiue Church, and the vniforme consent of succeeding Christians in all ages. And whereas our ad­versaries charge vs, that we likewise holde doctrinall Traditions, which haue no foūdation in the Scriptures, as namely the Canon of the Scriptures, the keeping of the Sabbath, the baptizing of In­fants, and the perpetuall Vir­ginitie of the blessed Virgin; it is sufficiently apparant, that these things are also deriued from the Scriptures: for as wee deny not, that the Ca­non of the Scripture may bee tearmed a Tradition in a large sense; yet wee say, euen that Tradition is deri­ued [Page 272] also from the testimony of the Apostle Saint Paul, yea and of Christ himselfe, who witnesseth, that what­soeuer he spake, was written in the Law, in the Prophets, & the Psalmes, vnder which none of the Apocryphall Books are contained. Tou­ching the Sabbath day, wee hold the obseruation of it to bee perpetuall,Acts 20.7. 1. Cor. 16.2. Reue. 1.10. and vn­changeable, because we find it noted in the Scriptures. Touching baptisme of In­fants, Bellarmine himselfe prooues it; first from the proportion betweene Bap­tisme and Circumcision: se­condly, from two places of Scripture. Iohn. 3.5. Math. 19.14 Lastly, concerning the perpetuall Virginitie of Marie, although for the ho­nour [Page 273] and sanctitie of that blessed Virgin wee beleeue it,Index Bibli­cus in Regi­is Biblus vocabulo (Maria) multis scri­pturae locis significari perpetuam virginita­tem Maria ostendit. yet this doctrine is not de necessitate, but de pietate fi­dei; it is more for pious cre­dulitie, then for necessitie; and yet if we require Scrip­ture for it, the Fathers proue it out of the 44 of Ezech. 2. as Hierome sheweth in his Commentaries vpon that place.

Now if any man list to be contentious, and demand of vs, where it is written that the Sonne of God is of the same substance with the Father? Where is it writ­ten, that Christ is God and man, subsisting in one per­son? Where is it written, that the holy Ghost pro­ceedeth from the Sonne as [Page 274] well as from the Father? or where is the word Trinitie to bee found written in the whole body of the Scrip­ture? If any man shall de­ny the truth of these things, because they are not plainly in the same words deliue­red in the Scriptures, what can his question argue lesse then a plaine cauilling, and shifting of a knowne truth; for as Athanasius in the like case answered the Arrians, touching the word [...], (of the substance with the Fa­ther. Athan. Ep. quod decre­ta Synodi Nicaenae cō ­gruis verbis sunt expo­sita.) Albeit the word bee not found in the Scriptures, yet it hath the same meaning that the Scriptures intend, and import the same with them whose eares are intirely affected towards Religion. And in like man­ner [Page 275] Saint Austen made the like answere:Quia etsi fortassè no­men ipsum non inueni­ret, res ta­mē ipsa in­veniretur; quid est e­nim conten­tiosius, quá vbi de re cō ­stat certare de nomine. Aug. Epist. 174. Albeit the word perhaps be not found there, yet the thing it selfe is found; and what more friuolous quarrell is it, then to contend about the word, when there is a certaintie of the thing? I will not re­quire of our aduersaries to shew mee in the Scriptures, the word of Transubstantia­tion, of Masse, of Supremacie, and the like, because they receiue them as Traditions which are not conteined in the Scriptures: but on the other side, if any Romanist will deny, that the Articles of the Apostles Creed are not contained in the Scrip­tures, and yet will shew me in expresse words, I beleeue in God the Father Almightie, [Page 276] maker of heauen and earth: or that, the holy Catholike Church and Communion of Saints, are the expresse wordes con­tained in the Scriptures, I will subscribe to the Arti­cles of the newe Romane Creed, and allow all Papall Traditions for Apostolical. For we doe not say that no­thing is to bee beleeued de fide, but what is written in the Scriptures in expresse termes, but wee professe it must be directly, or by ne­cessary consequence dedu­ced from the Scriptures. It was the answere of Epipha­nius to the disciples of Arius in the Primitiue Church. Wee all of vs doe confesse the Father to be vnbegotten, Epiphan. haeres. 69. nu. 71. & in­create; and it is surely an admi­rable [Page 277] saying, but shew mee if you can, where this saying is written: for neither doeth the Law of Moses, nor the Pro­phets, nor yet the Apostles make any mention thereof. If then we do piously acknowledge this saying, though it were not written any where; Idem. hae­res. 75. who can find fault with vs, though the word Coessentiall, or Consubstantiall be not written. As therefore we confesse the words, Vn­begotten, Increate, Consubstan­tiall, the word Trinitie, and the like, are not found in Scriptures: so I thinke no Romanists will or can deny, but that all those words are implyed in the Scripture, or by necessary inference deduced from them.

To conclude therefore [Page 278] this second poynt, and first Article of the Romane Creed, since Papall Traditi­ons haue no foundation in the Scripture, nor are con­tained in any Apostolike au­thor (by our aduersaries con­fession) since they want a continued succession from the Apostles time, with v­niuersalitie of Churches, & consent of Fathers, since they are not resolued of a certaine and definite num­ber of doctrinall Traditi­ons, (which ought to be re­solued in poynts of Faith.) Lastly, since the Scriptures by the testimonies of both sides, is the safest and furest rule for all beleeuers: and since many Papall Traditions are different, if not contrary to [Page 279] the Scriptures. To follow vnknowne, and vnwritten doctrines, for knowne and written verities, is Via dubia, a doubtfull and vncertaine way; it is Via deuia, a wan­dring and By-way.

I proceed in the next place to the examination of the ancient Fathers, where­by it shall appeare, the Ro­mish faith and doctrine, as it wants Antiquitie and Vni­uersalitie of Churches, so likewise it is vtterly desti­tute of the consent of anci­ent Fathers.

SECT. X. Our Aduersaries make great boast of the testimonies of the ancient Fathers in generall, yet when they come to sifting particular poynts, either by secret evasion they decline them, or openly reiect them.

Cant. 1.7. and 6.1. TEll mee then, O thou whom my soule loueth, where thou feedest, whither is thy beloued turned side, that wee may seeke him with thee? Shall wee seeke him in the Fathers? Oh (saith Campian) If wee once name the Fathers, Camp. Rat. 5. the field is fought, the wager is won on our side, for they are all ours. Yea, [Page 281] (saith Bristow) In most matters of Controuersie they are so plain on our side, Brist. Mot. 14. that it cannot with any colour bee denied, or called in question. Yea Duraeus the Iesuit claimes a peculiar in­terest in the behalfe of the Roman Church:Nos Patrū veri filii su­mus. Dur. coutr. Whi­tak p. 125. & 140. Wee onely are the true sonnes of the Fa­thers, wee doe not cite them by the halues, sometimes allowing one part of their doctrine, some­times reiecting another, but we embrace them all. And for confirmation of this asser­tion, the Romanists in their Apologie, or Petition of Lay Catholikes, make this generall acclamation:Apolog. or Pet. of Lay Cath. 1604. cap. 4. For one place of a Father, sometimes ill cited, sometimes falsified, sometimes mutilated, and some­times wholly corrupted, (by [Page 282] Protestants) we can produce a thousand, not by patches and mammockes, as they doe, but whole pages, whole chapters, whole bookes, and the vniforme consent of all the ancient Fa­thers, and Catholique Church.

Thus the wicked Iewes claimed Abraham for their Father; and thus the fran­tike Grecian claimed all the ships in Athens to bee his,Thrasi­laus. when the poore man had least interest in them. If Campian and his fellow Ie­suites had been liuing in the dayes of the ancient Fa­thers, surely they had been branded with the markes of heretikes for their false ala­rums: for Carosus the Euty­chian heretike, although his claime reach not to all the [Page 283] Fathers,Ego secun­dum exposi­tionem tre­centū octo­decem Pa­trum, sic credo &c. Concil. Chalc. Act. 4 p. 877. yet (saith he) accor­ding to the Exposition of three hundred and eighteene Fathers, so I beleeue, and in this faith was I baptized; what should ye say more to mee, I cannot tell. And Dioscorus the heretike, much like the Iesuit, makes an open outcry in the Coun­cell of Chalcedon: Ego cum Patribus eiicior, ego defendo Pa­trum dog­mata, ego horum ha­beo testimo­nia non sim­pliciter aut transitoriè, sed in ipso­rum libris expressum. Concil. Chalc. Act. 1. I haue the testimonies of the holy Fathers, Athanasius, Gregorie, Cyril, I varie not from them in any poynt, I am throwne foorth and banished with the Fathers, I defend the Fathers doctrine, I haue their iudgement vttered, not by chance, or vnaduisedly, but remaining expressed in their books. Thus Paynims & heretikes, Iewes and Iesuits claime Antiquitie and Vni­uersalitie in Traditions and [Page 284] Fathers: yea, the heretikes did glory and vaunt of the Fathers in the two famous Councels of Nice and Chal­cedon, in the very presence of the Fathers themselues; yea Pelagius the heretike, when he disagreed from the do­ctrine of the Fathers, (like a true Romanist, thought to aduance his owne heresie, by magnifying the Faith of Ambrose an ancient Father: Blessed St. Ambrose (saith he) that Bishop, Pelag. lib. 3. de lib. Ar­bitrio. q. in whose bookes the Roman faith especially appea­reth, who like a beautifull flow­er shined amongst the Latine Writers, whose faith and most pure vnderstāding of the scrip­tures, the enemy himselfe dares not reprehend. This is the ve­ry practise of the Romane [Page 285] church in these daies. They glory in the name of the Fa­thers, as if they were the true children, & only heires of their doctrine, when as in truth their chiefest points of faith were scarse known, much lesse beleeued de fide, in their dayes. Neither do I conceiue that the Roma­nists doe thus vaunt of the Fathers, because they are fauorable to their cause, but because they knowe the common people can learne nothing of the Fathers, but what they heare and vnder­stand from the report of their owne Priests.

Looke vpon the practise of the greatest champions in the Roman church: doth not Andradius, Card. Bellar­mine, [Page 286] and Card. Caietan (con­trary to the Article of the Roman Creed) decline the Exposition of the ancient Fathers? Doth not Cardi­nall Baronius professe that the Church of Rome doth not alwayes follow the con­sent of Fathers? Doth not their owne Lyra witnes, that the sayings of the holy Fathers are not of so great authoritie, Nam dicta Sanctorum Patrum nō sunt tantae authorita­tis, quin li­ceat contra­rium tene­re in tis quae per Scriptu­ras non de­terminātur Lyra. in Math. 1. but that it is lawfull to hold the contrary to them, in those things which are not determined by the Scriptures? Doeth not their Bishop Canus acknow­ledge, that the ancient Fa­thers sometimes erre, and a­gainst the ordinary course of Nature bring forth a monster? Canus loc. Theol lib. 7 c. 3 n. 7. Nay more, doe not their own Diuines at Doway make [Page 287] this publike declaration:Cum igitur in Catholi­cis veteribꝰ aliis pluri­mos feramꝰ errores, & extenuemꝰ, excusemus, excogitato commento persaepe ne­gemus, & cōmodum iis sensum af­fingamus, cū opponun­tur in di­sputationibꝰ aut in con­fictionibus cum aduer­sariis. Ind. Expur. Bel­gi [...]. p. 5. E­dit. Antw. An 1. 1571. We beare with many errours in the old Catholike Writers, wee ex­tenuate them, wee excuse them, and by inuenting some deuised shift, we oftentimes deny them, and faine some commodious sense for them, when they are ob­iected in disputations, or con­flicts with our aduersaries? If therefore the best learned Romanists, sometimes ex­cuse them, somtimes decline them, sometimes condemne them, shall we think the Fa­thers are all theirs? I ap­peale to their owne confes­sions. First, touching the words of Christ. Thou art Peter, and vpon this Rocke I will build my Church. Mal­donat the Iesuite makes this confession. The meaning of [Page 288] these words (viz. Mald. in Math. 16.19. p. 352.) That the Rocke is Christ) seemes not to mee to bee the true meaning, which all the Fathers thinke to be so, whom euer I remember to haue read, Hillary excepted. In like maner touching the words; Whatsoeuer thou loosest on earth, shall be loosed in Hea­uen, &c. he makes this pub­like profession; I will not in­terpret, Idem. Ibid. that this which is heere spoken to Peter, is spoken also in the same sense to the other Apo­stles, although I see all Interpre­ters to be of that mind, Communis sententia Theologorū admittit simplicitèr meritū de cōdigno, quae sentētia ve­rissima est. Bell. de Iu­stif. l. 5. c. 16 Origen onely excepted. Will you haue instances without ex­ception? It is the common sentence of all Diuines (sayeth Bellarmine) simply to admit merit of condignitie, which sen­tence is most true. Yet their [Page 289] owne Fryar Walden prote­sted confidently,Sicut omnes sancti prio­res vs (que) ad recentes Ca­tholicos & communis scripsit Ec­clesia. Wal. Tom. 3 de Sacram. tit. 1. cap. 7. that he was the sounder Diuine, and more faithfull Catholike, who doth simply denie such merit, —as all the former Saints, that is, (all the ancient Fathers) and the vniuersall Church (vntil the late Schoolemen) haue written. Againe, it is the generall vote of the later Romanists, that the words (This is my body) are the very formall and efficient cause of Tran­substantiation: yet their owne Archb. of Caesarea wit­nesseth,Christoph. li. 1. pa. 115. that all the orthodox Fathers both Greek and Latin, teach that Consecration is made by Christs prayer and benedi­ction, and not by those words, This is my body. Lastly, it is the generall Tenet of the [Page 290] Roman Church at this day, that the blessed Virgin was conceiued without original sinne: in so much as Bellar­mine professeth,Inter Ca­tholices non sunt nume­randi. Bell. de Amissa gra. l. 4. c. 15 they are not to be numbred amongst Catho­likes that thinke the contrary: and yet their owne Bishop Canus witnesseth with vs, that Sansti omnes, Sancti om­nes vno ore asseuerarūt beatam vir­ginē in pec­cato origi­nali concep­tam fuisse. Canus loc. Theol lib. 7 c. 1 n. 1. n. 3. All the holy Fathers, (vno ore) with one consent affirme, the blessed vir­gin to haue been conceiued in originall sinne. The Fathers then, by their good leaue, are not all theirs; & in some capital points, by their own confessions they are none of theirs, nay, they are reputed no good Catholiques by their own Tenets that teach not contrary to the Vni­forme consent of Fathers. [Page 291] I proceed to the examina­nation of more witnesses in the fundamentall poynts of their Roman faith. Touch­ing the Communion in one kind,Patres & Primitiua Ecclesia po­pulum à Cō ­munione calicis non prohibebant nos arcemꝰ. Aene. Syl. Epist. 130. it is the confession of Aeneas Syluius: The Fathers in the Primitiue Church did not forbid the people to drinke of the Cup, but wee driue them from it.

Touching the doctrine of Transubstantiation, it is the confession of Card. Cusanus: Certaine of the ancient Fathers are found of this mind, Cusan. ex­ercit. lib. 6. that the bread in the Sacrament is not transubstantiated, nor changed in nature.

Touching Priuate Masse, it is the confession of Cardinall Bellarmine: Bell. de Mis­sa. lib. 2. c. 9. There is no expresse testimony amongst [Page 292] the ancient Fathers, but it may be gathered by coniectures.

Touching Prayer & Ser­uice in an vnknown tongue, it is the confession of Cas­sander: Cassand. Liturg. cap. 28. The Canonicall Pray­ers, and especially the words of Consecration, the ancient Fa­thers did so read it, that all the people might vnderstand, and say Amen.

Touching Adoration of Images, it is the confession of Massonus, a learned Pa­pist:E Biblio­thecâ Papi­rii Massoni [...]eius li­bellis de pi­cturis et i­maginibus. There is no example in Scriptures or Fathers, for Ado­ration of Images: they ought to bee taken for ornament to please the sight, not to instruct the people.

Touching Indulgences, and Pardons, it is the con­fession of Cardinall Caietan: [Page 293] There is no authoritie of Scrip­tures or Fathers, Caiet. o­pusc. 16. c. 1. Greeke or La­tine that bring them to our knowledge.

Touching Purgatory, it is the confession of Fisher Bishop of Rochester:Roff Art. 18. contra Lutherum. Of Purgatory there is very little or no mention amongst the an­cient Fathers.

Touching the number of seuen Sacraments, it is Bel­larmines confession:Bell. de ef­fect. Sacra­ment. lib. 2. cap. 24. The Pro­testants ought not to require of vs to shew the number of seuen Sacraments in Scriptures or Fathers.

Lastly, touching the Ex­position of the Scriptures, Cardinall Baronius makes this ingenious acknowledg­ment:Baron. An­nal. ad An. 34. nu. mar. 213. Although the holy Fa­thers for their great learning [Page 294] bee rightly termed the Doctors of the Church: yet the Catho­like Romane Church doeth not follow them alwayes, and in all things, in expounding of the Scriptures.

These men therefore, which so much magnifie the Antiquitie of their Church, and doctrine of the ancient Fathers, vpon exa­mination and triall of their cause, plainly intimate vnto vs, that the most substantiall poynts, and chiefest articles of the Roman Faith, were altogether vnknowne, or at leastwise did want the vni­forme consent of Fathers: And that you may yet fur­ther know, notwithstanding they seemingly magnifie the Fathers amongst the cōmon [Page 295] people; yet there is scarce any ancient Father of note, but either they cite him by the halues, or condemne him as erronious, or reiect him for a counterfet at their pleasure. Nay more, there is scarce any poynt of the Roman Faith, which is not ratified and confirmed by our aduersaries from the au­thorities of some pretended ancient Father; the which authorities vpon other oc­casions are decreed by their owne fellow Romanist for vpstart and counterfet opi­nions: as for instance.

Linus the pretended suc­cessor of St. Peter, is cited by Coccius for proofe of Purga­tory: Cocc. tom. 1 l. 5. de sanct. art. 9. Vpon an other occa­sion his fellow Bellarmine [Page 296] makes answer:Bell. de Pōt. lib. 2. c. 9. The history of Linus is truely counterfet, and therefore of no authority at all.

Pig. Hier. lib. 6. c. 6. Anacletus Epistles are ci­ted by Pigghius and Staple­ton for proofe of the Supre­macie: Cusan. Cō ­cord. Cath. li. 2. c. 34. their fellow Cardi­nall Cusanus pronounceth them to be a matter of for­gerie.

Primasius vpon the He­brewes, is cited by Bellarmine for the Carnall presence, Bell. li. 2. de Euch. c 31. and the Sacrifice of the Masse: his fellow Salmeron makes an­swer:Salm. lib. 1. de Miss. c. 6. Primasius neuer wrote them, but Haymo a late Bishop in Germany.

Rhem. in Rom. 3.20.St. Hierom vpon the Epi­stles is cited by the Rhemists for Iustification by workes: Their associate Bellarmine elsewhere declareth: That [Page 297] this booke is a shamelesse coun­terfet, Bell. li. 4. de verbo Dei cap. 5. and hath for his Author, rather the heretique Pelagius, then such an holy Father.

St. Austen de Ecclesiae dog­matibus, Rhem. in 1. Cor. 11.28. is cited by the Rhe­mists for Auricular confession: Alph. hae­res. 10. tit. Bapt. Alphonsus à Castro denies the Tract to bee Austens, and con­demnes it for a craftie coun­terfet.

Athanasius Sermon,Bell li. 3. de Sanct. c. 16. De Sanctissimâ Deiparâ, is cited by Bellarmine for Inuocation of Saints: Baron. tom. 1. ad 48. num. 19. his fellow Baronius professeth that the Sermon is a meere counterfet.

Anselme in his Commen­taries,Bellar. de Purg lib. 1. cap. 6. Lib. 2. de Euch. c. 36. is cited by Bellarmine for Purgatory, for the Reall presence, for the blessed Vir­gines immaculate Conception, for Freewill: yet his fellow [Page 298] Posseuine professeth,Lib. 4. de amissa. grat. cap. 15. Lib. 5. de grat. & lib. arbit. c. 26. Posseu. Ap­par. verbo Herucus. that one Herueus Natalis, liuing about 250 yeeres since, is the wri­ter of those Commentaries falsely ascribed to Anselme. And thus the Romanists re­semble bad debters, who would satisfie their credi­tors, some with light gold, some with crackt, some with soldered, some with coun­terfet; protesting, that if they be not all English An­gels, yet they bee Flemish: at least they are stampt with the image of an Angel. But that which is most proper for euery mans obseruation (especially for those that study the Controuersies of these times) let them peruse the workes of their greatest Champion Cardinal Bellar­mine, [Page 299] and they shall find, as in euery point of Contro­uersie the Fathers are cited plentifully by him, in be­halfe of the Romane faith: so likewise vpon other oc­casions, when the same Fa­thers in the same Tractates are produced against them in our behalfe, he reiects the same Fathers and their au­thorities as counterfet, and accounts them rather as children, then ancient Fa­thers. As for example.

Dionysius the Areopagite is cited by Bellarmine for Inuo­cation of Saints, for Pugatory, Bell. lib. 1. de Sanct. cap. 19. Idem l. 1. de Purg. c. 6. Idem lib. 2. de Monach. cap. 5. Idē de con­firm. l. 2. c. 7. for Monasticall life: yet else­where he confesseth, it is vn­certaine whether the booke bee St. Denys, whose name it beares.

[Page 300] Bel. de grat. & lib. arb. l. 5. c. 25. Idem lib. 2. de Pont. c. 2 Clemens Recognitions is ci­ted by Bellarmine for Free­will: yet when they are al­ledged against the Popes Succession, shewing that Pe­ter dyed not at Rome, hee disclaimeth them as Apo­cryphall bookes.

Bell. lib. 2. de Euch. ca. 2. initio. Idē de Euch. l. 4. c. 26. Resp. Ignatius a Greeke Father is cited by Bellarmine for Transubstantiation, but when hee is produced by vs for the Communion in both kinds, he answereth, that Ig­natius Greeke writings are not much to be trusted to.

Bell. li. 3 de Euch. l [...]0. Lib. 2. de Miss. c. 2. Lib. 1. de Purg c. 6. Bell. li. 4. de Euch. c. 26. § Tertius locus. (v) Cyprian de Coena Domini is alleadged by Bellarmine for the Sacrifice of the Masse, for Purgatory, for Transubstanti­ation: but when it is produ­ced by vs for the Cup to the Lay people, hee disclai­meth [Page 301] the Sermon to bee Cyprians.

Abdias his workes are ci­ted by Bellarmine for Mona­sticall life: Bell. l. 2 de Mon. c. 27. yet elsewhere he confesseth that the learned of his owne Church hold the same for counterfet;Ego certe nullum ab eo testimo­nium petii. Idē de bo­nis oper. l. 2 c. 24. and for my part (saith hee) Ego nullum, &c. I haue had no te­stimony from him.

Amphilochius his Vita St. Basilij is cited by Bellarmine, Bell. li. 4. de Euch c 24. to prooue the Eucharist was giuen to the sicke in one kinde: Haud dubio falsa vel. supposititia. Idem de Scrip. Eccle. de Amphil. Ann. 380. and yet in his Catalogue of Ecclesiasticall Authors, he pronounceth the same book to be false and counterfet.

Damasus Pontificall, is ci­ted by Bellarmine for Images, Bell. li. 2. de Imag. c. 9. and to prooue, that Election of Bishops onely belongeth to [Page 302] the Pope: Idem lib. 1. de Cler. c. 8. Bellar de Scrip. Eccle. and yet in his Ca­talogue aforesaid, hee saith, It is known that Damasus was neuer the writer of that booke, but Anastasius onely the Master of the Popes Library.

Ann. 367. Bell. li. 4 de grat & lib. arb c. 14. Idem de Script Ec­cles an. 380 Obseru 3 Libri non videntur esse S. Greg. Nyss. Lib. 2. de Imag. c. 28. Li. de scrip Eccles. ann. 290. Gregorie Nyssen his eight Bookes De Philosophia, are cited by Bellarmine for Free­will: yet in his Catalogue aforesaid, he confesseth they seeme not to be the bookes of Gregory Nyssen.

Lactantius Verses are ci­ted by Bellarmine for Adora­tion of the Crosse: and yet he confesseth elsewhere, that it is doubted whether Lactan­tius were the Author.

Bell. li 1. de ver. Dei. ca. 14. Nec librum illum esse Augustini vt erudit fatentur. Bell. de Mis. lib. 2. c. 12.) Ad locum.Saint Austen is cited ad O­rosium by Bellarmine, to prooue Ecclesiasticus Cano­nicall Scripture: but else­where [Page 303] when he is obiected in our behalfe in that Tract, hee answeres it is not Saint Austens worke, as learned men confesse.

Iustin Martyr, Bell lib de Bap c. 25. Idem lib. de Confir. c. 5. Idem lib. de Euch. c. 2. Idem lib. 1. de Sanct. 1. 4 § 3. his Questi­ons are alleadged by Bellar­mine for Vnction in baptisme, for the Sacrament of Confir­mation, for Transubstantia­tion: but elsewhere hee de­clareth them to be the work of some new Authour, and not the workes of Iustin Martyr.

Origen in his Homilies on the Gospels, Lib. 2. de Euch. c. 8. lib 3. de pae­nit. ca 7. is cited by Bellar­mine for the Reall presence, and his Homilies on the Psalmes he cites for Auricu­lar confession: In lib. de Script Ec­cles. yet the one he disclaimeth as none of Ori­gens, the other he freely con­fesseth, [Page 304] it is doubted of who is the Author.

Cassianus is cited by Bel­larmine for an ancient Au­thor,Bell de Iu­stif. l. 1. c. 13 for the poynt of Iu­stification, Idē de bon. oper. cap. 2. lib. 2. and set times of fa­sting: yet elsewhere hee ac­knowledgeth the booke for Apocryphall and counter­fet,Bell li. 6. de lib. arb. ca. 4 § accedat. and condemned in a Ro­man Councell vnder Pope Gelasius.

Bell li. 2. de Pont. c. 14. Eusebius, his third Epistle is cited by Bellarmine for the Supremacie: yet he pro­fesseth elsewhere,Idem de Confirm. lib. 2. c. 7. it is not certaine who is the Author thereof.

Hee that shall reade these and many such like authori­ties of pretended Fathers in behalfe of the Roman Re­ligion, might at first sight [Page 305] happily bee induced to be­leeue, that all or most of the ancient Doctors of the Church belong to them, when as in truth our aduer­saries vse them but as Mer­chants vse their Counters, sometimes they stand with them for pence, sometimes for pounds, as they bee next and readiest at hand to make vp their account.

Thus one while they muster vp their forces by multitudes of authorities, as if they would make that good by number, which they want in weight. Some­times they condemne them as counterfet, sometimes they purge them, as if they were full of corruptions, & according to seuerall occa­sions [Page 306] they haue their seue­rall deuices, to produce them, or auoyd them at their pleasure:Si conficta historia non est vllius authoritatis Bell. lib. 2. de Pont. cap. 9. whereas, if they bee counterfeit, (as they are confessed to bee) they are of no authoritie: if Catho­lique and Orthodoxe, they make nothing for the points in Controuersie, as shall bee presented in the next place.

SECT. XI. The most substantiall poynts of Roman Faith and Doctrine, (as they are now taught and receiued in the Church of Rome) were neuer taught by the Primitiue Church, nor receiued by the ancient Fa­thers.

NEither are these men content to chal­lenge a right to all the Fathers, (although they confesse they are not all or­thodox and true Fathers) but they likewise charge vs, that,Sebast. Flash. in profess. Cath. we make no more account of them, then wee doe of the Turkes Alcaron, or Aesops Fa­bles. [Page 308] Nay (saith Bristow) it is well known to such as heare the Protestants Sermons, Bristow. Mot. 14. or bee in place to heare them, talke bold­ly and familiarly among them­selues, are not afrayd to confesse plainely, that the Fathers are all Papists. A strange and senselesse fiction deuised by these men, when not onely our learned Diuines, but the vulgar people, are all eye-witnesses, that the Booke written by the Iewel of our age, is published in all the Churches of our kingdom, whose challenge for the principall points of our Re­ligion is made good, and will euer remaine vnanswe­rable out of the Writings and Authorities of the an­cient Fathers. But admit [Page 309] some Protestants were so ignorant or senselesse, as to say priuately, All the Fathers were Papists: what stupiditie then may we think it in the chiefe Pastors of the Ro­mane Church, which by their publike writings, and open confession acknow­ledge the principall poynts of Controuersie; yea, their chiefe Articles of Faith, were vnknowne to the an­cient Fathers.

We confesse it for a truth, that the ancient Fathers, St. Austen, S. Ambrose, St. Hie­rome and the rest were lear­ned men, they were Instru­ments of Grace, and Mercy: we read them, we reuerence them, we giue God thankes for them: but withall wee [Page 310] learne this lesson frō them: Wee weigh not the writings of men, August ad Fortunat. Epist. 111. bee they neuer so worthy, and Catholique, as wee weigh the Canonicall Scriptures, but yeelding that reuerence that is due vnto them. Wee may mis­like and refuse something in their writings, if we find they haue thought otherwise then the trueth may beare: and such (saith Austen) am I in the writings of others, and such I would wish others to be in mine. Saint Austen thought it no preiudice to the Romane Church, nor disparagement to his own learning, to haue his writings examined by the rule of Scripture. Nay more (saith he) that which in my bookes thou thinkest to bee vndoubtedly true, Quod certū non habebis nisi certum intellexeris noli firmè retinere. Aug in Proae. lib 3. de Trinit. vnlesse thou [Page 311] perceiue it to bee true indeed, hold it not resolutely: St. Am­brose was so farre from wi­shing Prince or people to rely vpon his doctrine, that by way of preuention hee writes to Gratian the Em­perour:Nolo argu­mento ere­das sancte Imperator & nostrae disputationi Scripturas interroge­mus. &c. Ambros de Fide ad Grat l 1 c. 4 Beleeue not (O Empe­rour) our Arguments and our Disputations, let vs aske the A­postles, let vs aske the Prophets, let vs aske Christ. Now ad­mit a doubtfull Recusant at this day repaire for instru­ction to a Romish Priest or Bishop, will he answer him with Austen, Examine my doctrine by the rule of Scripture, and if you find it not agreeable to that Word, hold it not resolute­ly? or will he answer him with Ambrose, Heare not my [Page 312] arguments, beleeue not vs that are the professed Priests and Pastors of the Church; but read the Scriptures, con­sult with the Oracles of God, let Christ the Head of the Church resolue the doubts and controuersies of Religion? Surely nothing is more to bee wished for by vs, nothing is lesse to be ho­ped for from them.

True it is, that St. Hierome in the question betwixt him and St. Austen, (whether St. Paul reprooued Peter colou­rably, or in earnest) allead­geth seuen Fathers against St. Austen; and withall de­sires him, to giue him leaue to erre with seuen Fathers. But what answere maketh Austen? He appeales to St. [Page 313] Paul, Ipse mihi pro his om­nibꝰ et suprà hos omnes Apostolus Paulus oc­currit ad ipsum con­fugio, ad ip­sum ab om­nibus qui aliter sen­tiūt litera­rū tractae­toribus pro­uoco Aug. Ep. 19. and (saith he) Instead of all, and aboue all, I haue Paul the Apostle, to him doe I runne, to him I appeale from all Wri­ters that think otherwise. Here wee see seuen principall members of the Church a­gainst the meaning of one Apostle, and yet all they were not able to remooue St. Austen from that one au­thoritie; which was preua­lent against all; and I thinke it cannot be denied, but that this Father went the right way to the Gospel. Againe, when hee was pressed by Cresconius a Gramarian, with a testimony out of Cyprian, hee returnes this answere, I am not bound to bee tyed to that Epistle, because I doe not ac­count of Cyprians Epistles as of [Page 314] the Canonicall Scriptures, Ego Episto­la huius au­thoritate nō teneor, quia &c. Aug. contr. Cres. lib. 2. c. 32. but I examine them by the Canoni­call Scriptures, and what I find in them agreeable to that word, I receiue it with commendati­ons; what I finde to disagree from it, with his good leaue, I leaue it.

This was the account the ancient Fathers made of their owne writings, and their fellow Bishops, euen at that time when the Church was most visible, and when the Fathers were in chiefest estimation in the Christian world.

I speake not these things, as if there were lesse hope to find the truth in the wri­tings of the ancient Fathers, then in new and vpstart opi­nions of some priuate spi­rits. [Page 315] It is the voice of God and Nature: Aske thy father, Deut. 32.7. and he will shew thee, thine an­cients, and they shall tell thee: and herein we are obedient children, and according to our dutie,Leu. 19.23. Wee rise vp before the hoarie head, and honour the person of the aged. We agree with the Fathers, wherein they agree with the Scrip­tures, and with themselues; and if in some particular poynts wee dissent from some particular Fathers, yet it is in those things which want vniuersalitie and con­sent, or are doubtfully vtte­red, or are deliuered as pri­uate opinions, and not as Articles of Faith: wee fol­low the Anciens as Leaders, not as Masters: for their wri­tings [Page 316] are no rules of faith, Scriptae Pa­trum non sunt regulae fidei, nec habent au­thoritatem obligandi. Bell. de Cō ­cil. author. lib. 2. c. 12. nei­ther haue they authoritie to binde: This is Bellarmines confession, this is ours. And that the world may know our aduersaries haue no such cause (as they pretend) to bragge of the authorities of the Fathers, let any Prote­stant or Romanist, examine the substantiall poynts of Controuersie, as they are now published,Bulla Pij 4. and decreed by the Popes Bull, and Councell of Trent, let them I say, obserue the questions, as they are now stated with Anathemas, for Articles of faith, & compare them with the doctrines of the ancient Fathers, and they shall easi­ly discerne, that our aduer­saries oftentimes obtrude [Page 317] the Tenets of particular per­sons for the generall con­sent of Fathers, and produce doubtful opinions, to proue Articles of faith: for I dare confidently avow, that in all fundamentall poynts of difference, either they want Antiquitie to supply their first ages; or Vniuersalitie, to make good the consent of Christian Churches: or vnitie of opinions, to proue their Trent Articles of be­liefe. And for tbe better manifestation of this my assertion, I will giue you instance in the principall poynts of the Roman faith and doctrine, that by com­paring the doctrine of the Fathers in the first place, with the Tenets of the Ro­manists [Page 318] in the later, it shall appeare, that the Northerne and Southerne Poles shall sooner meet together, then their opinions, standing as they doe, can be reconciled.

Hee therefore that will take vpon him to proue out of the ancient Fathers, that Christ is really present in the Sacrament to all faith­full Communicants, let him spare the labour, I will con­fesse it: (for wee acknow­ledge that Christ is really present, both spiritually by faith, and effectually by grace conferred vpon all worthy receiuers.) But let him proue, that Christs bo­dy is substantially, corpo­rally, and carnally in the Sa­cramēt, vnder the accidents [Page 319] of bread and wine; and that Reprobates, and creatures void of reason, much more of faith, may really partake of his flesh and blood, as is now taught and beleeued de fide in the Roman Church, and I will subscribe.

He that will proue out of the ancient Fathers, that the Sacramentall bread and cup were carried home to mens houses, in the time of perse­cution, and sometime pri­uately receiued, let him spare the labour, I will con­fesse it: but let him shew me, that priuate Masses, that is, the receiuing of the Eu­charist by the Priest alone, without a competent num­ber of Communicants, was the pulique practise of the [Page 320] ancient Church, as it is now vsed in the Romane, and I will subscribe.

Het at will proue out of the ancient Fathers, that the consecrated bread was som­times giuen without the cup to sicke folkes, to impotent, and abstenious persons; let him spare the labour, I will confesse it: but let him proue that the Fathers did generally forbid the Lay people, and the communica­ting Priest, to partake of the Sacramentall cup, and that the bread alone was adiud­ged sufficient without the Cup, as it is now receiued in the Roman Church De fide, as an Article of Faith, and I will subscribe.

He that will proue out of [Page 321] the ancient Fathers, that Prayers and Seruice in the Roman Church was com­monly taught and practised in the Latin tongue, let him spare the labour, I will con­fesse it; (for it was the com­mon and knowne language of the Latin Church) but let him shew mee that Prayers and Seruice was deliuered in a tongue vnknowne, and not vnderstood of the com­mon people, as it is now v­sed and receiued with Ana­thema in the Roman church, and I will subscribe.

He that will proue out of the ancient Fathers, that I­mages were allowed for memory, for history, for or­nament, let him spare the la­bour, I will confesse it: but [Page 322] let him prooue that they were allowed by the Fa­thers for publique and pri­uate veneration, or religious worship; and that such wor­ship was established as a do­ctrine of Faith, as it is now vsed in the Roman Church, and I will subscribe.

He that will proue out of the ancient Fathers, that the Bishop of Rome, and all o­ther Bishops had power to dispence with the rigour of Ecclesiasticall Penance, by Pardons, and Indulgences, let him spare the labour, I will confesse it: but let him proue that those Indulgences were the treasure of the Church, by the application of Saints merits, and that priuate satisfactions which [Page 323] were left to the discretion of euery Bishop were trans­ferred wholly to the power of the Pope, and so receiued de Fide, as an article of faith, as it is now vsed in the Ro­mane Church, and I will subscribe.

He that will proue out of the ancient Fathers, that Confirmation, Penance, Orders, Matrimonie, are oftentimes called by the name of Sacraments, let him spare the labour, I will confesse it: But let him proue the poynt in questi­on, that al those Sacraments were instituted by Christ in the new Testament, and that there are neither more nor lesse, then seuen termed by the name of Sacraments, [Page 324] and those onely were pro­perly so called, and that number of seuen was recei­ued de fide, as an Article of faith, and I will subscribe.

He that will proue out of the ancient Fathers, that St. Peter had a primacie of Or­der amongst the Apostles, and that the Bishop of Rome had the first place amongst other Bishops; let him spare the labour, I will confesse it: but let him proue that Peter had iurisdiction ouer the Apostles, and that the Bi­shop of Rome was helde Christs Vicar generall, and Head of the Vniuersall Church, and that such his power and Supremacie was receiued de fide, as an article of faith, as it is now taught [Page 325] in the Roman Church, and I will subscribe.

Lastly, he that will proue out of the ancient Fathers, that out of the Cath. church there is no saluation, let him spare the labor, I will cōfesse it: but let him proue, that the present Roman Church, is that Catholike Church, as it is decreed de fide, by their last Article of their Creed, and I will subscribe.

Thus briefly I haue giuen you my poore opinion how to examine the Trent Faith and doctrine, whereby you may easily discouer the va­nitie of those men, who challenge an interest in all the Fathers, in behalfe of their Religion: and certain­ly if this rule bee rightly [Page 326] obserued, and pursued by a­ny indifferent Iudge, he shal finde there is not greater distance in the times, then difference in their doctrine.

This is so well knowne to the best learned on their side, that when wee charge them, that they haue created new Articles of Faith, vn­knowne to the first and best ages: by way of preuenti­on they giue this solution; that true it is, many poynts of doctrine were not expli­citè reuealed, and publikely declared, as Articles of faith in the dayes of the ancient Fathers, because no here­tikes did then oppose them: but (say they) they were, implicitè, obscurely, secret­ly, reseruedly knowne, and [Page 327] receiued of the Ancients, with an implicit faith: by which confession, their la­ter errour will bee greater then the first; for as one way they would seemingly auoyd the creating of new Articles of faith: so by ac­knowledgement of an im­plicit faith, they ouerthrow by consequence the Visibi­litie of their Church: for if the Church of Rome had but an implicite beliefe in those things which are now publikely declared, without doubt the Church at that time was not visible in the faith, it was not like a Citie vpon a hill, knowne and conspicuous to all persons; and thereupon the grand poynt of Visibilitie, (which [Page 328] they so much magnifie a­mong themselues) will ea­sily be called in question.

For a conclusion of this poynt, I will giue you but one instance, whereby you may the better iudge of the rest. Looke vpon the lear­ned Treatise of the right Reuerend Bishop of Meath, (now Primate of Armach) wherein the iudgement of the ancient Fathers,An Answer to a chal­lenge made by a Iesuite in Ireland. 1624. touch­ing seuerall poynts of con­trouersie, is faithfully de­liuered in our behalfe: what Reply (might wee thinke) could bee made by our ad­uersaries, to those Authori­ties so rightly produced▪ Behold, a Iesuite by Order, W. Malone by name,A Reply to Mr. Vshers answere. hath made a Reply, wherein hee [Page 329] hath produced in number many more authorities of Fathers, in behalfe of the Roman Church, and Trent Doctrine. The encounter being made, the end of the victory may seeme doubt­full: for the Fathers are produced by both conten­ding parties, and seemingly they adhere to both sides, as if they made both for Pa­pist and Protestant, in one and the same substantiall poynts of doctrine. The reason being examined, it will appeare the Fathers do not vary from themselues, nor from vs in poynts of faith: but the Iesuite pro­duceth Authorities imper­tinent to the poynt in que­stion: As for instance in [Page 330] the first Article of Tra­ditions.

Our Reuerend Bishop tels the Iesuite by way of pre­uention,B Vsher cap. Tradi­tions p. 35. that Traditions of all sorts, are not promiscuously strucke at by vs, but such vn­written traditions which are obtruded for Articles of Reli­gion: As for example. It is the first part of the Article of the Roman Creed: I ad­mit and imbrace the Apostoli­call and Ecclesiesticall Traditi­ons. To this first part of the article, the reformed Chur­ches doe subscribe: but the other Obseruances and Consti­tutions of the Church, which is the latter part of the Ar­ticle, we thinke it great rea­son to gainesay: for vnder the pretence of (other Obser­uances) [Page 331] the Church of Rome doeth vphold her priuate Masse, her Latine Seruice, her halfe Communion, her Inuoca­tion of Saints, her worship of Images, & the like: all which are admitted for part of Gods worship, and accep­ted by them for Apostolike Traditions, when as in truth they are flat contrary to the doctrine of the written Word. The question then is not whether the doctrine deliuered by Christ or his Apostles by word of mouth were of equall authoritie with the Word written (for this neuer any Protestant denied:) but whether the vnwritten Doctrine now taught in the Romane Church, were deliuered by [Page 332] Christ and his Apostles: whether their Ecclesiastical Obseruations and Consti­tutions now vsed, bee of e­quall authoritie with the written Word: whether their Papal Traditions were alwayes, or euer admitted into the rule of faith: and lastly, whether the Scrip­tures are not sufficient for the saluation of the belee­uer, without the helpe of those Traditions. Let these questions bee rightly pro­pounded in our behalfe, and the multitude of the Iesuites authorities will fall to ground of themselues: for what Father hath hee produced to proue that the Papall Traditions now re­ceiued de fide, in the Church [Page 333] of Rome, were deliuered by word of mouth by the A­postles? what Father hath hee cited, to prooue that the Constitutions of their Church had a constant and continuall succession from the time of the Apostles, (as Articles of faith ought to haue?) what Fa her hath he vrged, that admitted do­ctrinall Traditions vnwrit­ten into the Rule of faith? Lastly, what ancient Father hath hee truely alleadged, that denies the Scriptures to bee sufficient for all belee­uers, without the helpe of Romish Traditions?

It were no difficult matter as I conceiue, to giue a full answer to the Iesuits replie in the right stating of the [Page 334] Questions, wherby it might easily appeare, that hee and his associates haue taken great paines to little pur­pose: but I submit my opi­nion to the iudgment of the learned, & proceed from the Fathers in generall, to parti­culars, wherin I wil instance in two principall Lights of the Westerne Church, St. Austen, and St. Gregory, the one Bishop of Hippo, the o­ther Bishop of Rome, where­by you shal plainly discerne how the later Popes and Bi­shops doe differ from the former, and how these two Fathers of the Church con­curre expresly with the do­ctrine professed in the Re­formed Churches, different from the Roman.

SECT. XII. Saint Austen in particular is much disparaged by the Ro­manists, and for instance in many seuerall poynts of mo­ment, wherein he professedly concurreth with vs, is expres­ly reiected by them.

TOrrensis the Iesuite hath abbreuiated all St. Austens workes, and published them in ho­nour of his Church, by the name of Augustiniana Con­fessio, Austens Confession. Brerely the Priest hath con­tracted his doctrine into a lesser modell, and more par­ticularly applyed it to the [Page 336] Roman faith, by the name of Saint Austens Religion, as if Saint Austen and the Roma­nists did professe one and the same Religion, & made one and the same confession of their faith. To say little of their great brags of this holy Father, I will giue you but one instance, and so de­scend into particulars,Is Author est Augusti­nus, vt eius sententia si vel nulla scriptura, nulla ratio­ne, nullis a­liis authoribus probare­tur sola per­sonae reue­rentia satis magna au­thoritatem meretur. Mal. in Ioh. 6. num. 68. Mal­donat the Iesuite tels vs, that Saint Austen is an Author of that esteeme, that his opinion, were it neither proued by [...]crip­ture, nor reason, nor any other Author, yet the sole reuerence of his person deserues sufficient authoritie of it selfe. Here is an ample testimony touch­ing the great light of the westerne Church: but look we backe to the Iesuits pro­ceeding, [Page 337] in that very Tract vpon the same Chap. within six foregoing Verses of the same Text, (where he giues this free & full approbation of this learned Father) and finding that S. Austens Expo­sition of an other Scripture did disagree from the Ro­mane Church,Non nego me huim interpreta­tionis authorem neminē habere, sed hanc eò ma­gis probo quā illā al­terā Augu­stini, caete­ra [...]ūalioqui probatissi­mam, quòd haec cū Cal­uinistarum sensu ma­gis pugnat. Mald. in Ioh. 6 n 62. and accord wholly with the Protestant faith, instantly, as it were with the same breath, cryes out against him: I confesse, I haue no author for my Expo­sition, but I rather allow it, then that of Austens, (although his of the rest be most probable) be­cause this of mine doeth more crosse the sense of the Caluinists. I will descend into particu­lars, and notwithstanding our aduersaries great brags [Page 338] of St. Austen, I will giue you instances in many principal poynts of doctrine, wherein they plainely intimate by their owne confessions he is wholly ours.

1. Touching the proofe of Purgatory: whereas Saint Paul saith,1 Cor. 3. The fire shall trie euery mans worke of what sort it is; for the day shall declare it. Aug. de fide & oper. c. 16 St. Austen (interprets) by this fire is meant the fire of tri­bulation in this world: Bell de Pur. lib. 1. cap. 5. but this opinion of his we haue reiected, saith Bellarmine.

2. Saint Austen saith, When Peter receiued the keyes, hee re­presented the holy Church: § Quarto. Aug. Tract. in Ioh. 50. and therefore the power of the keyes was not giuen to Peter onely. Albertus Pigghius is a witnesse against him, that [Page 339] hee is the onely man, De Augusti­no possem dicere quod vnus homo fuerit hâc in re, nec firmitèr se­cum nec cū aliis consen­tiens Hier. Eccles lib 6 cap. 4. who in this poynt neither agreeth con­stantly with himselfe, nor with others.

3. Saint Austen saith, by the daily sacrifice spoken of in the Prophet Malachie, is meant the prayers and prai­ses of Saints. Azorius makes answere:Aug. lib. 2 contr lit. cap [...]6. Reliquum veterū Pa­trū coetum atponimꝰ et Concil. Tri­dentini te­stimonium Azor. Instit Moral. part. 1. l. [...]0 c. 11. Aug contr. Adim. c. 12. Iewel. Art. 12 pa 346. Wee oppose against him the generall consent of other Fathers, and the testimonie of the Councell of Trent.

4. St. Austen saith, Christ spake these words, This is my body, when hee gaue a signe of his body. Master Hardin makes answere, that St. Austen fighting against the M [...]ni­chees, oftentimes vseth not his owne sense and meaning, but those things which by some means, howsoeuer it were, might [Page 340] seeme to giue him aduantage a­gainst them, so as he might put them to the worst.

5. St. Austen saith, Those words of Saint Luke, August de Consens. E­vang. lib. 3. cap. 1. I will not hencefoorth drinke of the fruit of the Vine, are to be vn­derstood of the Sacramentall Cup, and consequently the fruit of the vine, was wine in substance after consecra­tion.Dico Augu­stinum non expendisse hunc locum diligenter. Bellar. de E [...]ch. li. 1. cap 11. Bellarmine is a witnesse against him, that hee did not well consider of that text, which appeares by this, that hee passed it ouer lightly.

6. Saint Austen saith, The Israelites eate of the same spi­rituall meate, Aug in Ioh. Tract. 26. but not the same corporall which wee eate: for they eate Manna, wee an other meat, but both the same spiri­tuall meat. Maldonat confes­seth, [Page 341] this is the doctrine of the Caluinists:Hoc dico­persua um me habere [...] D. Augusti­nū si nostrâ fuisset aetate longè alitèr censurum. M [...]ld. in Ioh. 6. n. 50. but (saith he) I am verily perswaded, that if Austen had been liuing in these dayes, and had seene the Calut­nists so interpret Saint Paul, he would haue beene of an other mind, especially being such an vtter enemy to heretikes.

7. Saint Austen saith,Sine fide e­tiā quae vi­dētur bona opera in peccata ver­tuntur. Aug. contr. duas Ep. Pelag. ad Bonif l. 3. c. 5. Non sequē ­da illa opi­nio quam Tridentinū Concilium nuper merito damnauit (omnia infidelium opera esse peccata) quāuis maximū authorem Diuū Augustinū habuisse videatur. Mald. Com. in Math. 7.18. The workes which are done without faith, though they seeme good, are turned into sinne. Maldo­nat answers: Wee may not de­fend that opinion which the Councell of Trent did of late iustly condemne, although the great Father S. Austen seeme to be of that opinion.

8. Saint Austen saith: He [Page 342] crowneth thee, Coronat te quia dona sua coronat, non merita tua. Aug. in Psal. 10 [...]. Bish in his Refor. of a Cathol. de­formed. because he crow­neth his owne gifts, not thy merits. M. Bishop protesteth, that Saint Austen was too wise to let any such foolish sentence to passe his pen.

9. Saint Austen saith: I know certaine worshippers of Tombes and Pictures, August. de Mor. Eccles. li. 1. c. 34. Bell. de I­mag. c. 16. whom the Church condemneth. Bel­larmine answers: This booke was written in the beginning of his first conuersion to the Ca­tholike Faith. Aug. de cor­rept & gra. cap 1. D. Augusti­nus dū toto spiritus ac verborū ar­dore pro de­fensione di­uinae gratiae pugnat ad­uersus Pela­gianos libe­rū arbitriū cū iniuria diuinae gra­tiae ex [...]ollē ­tes in alte­rā quasi fo­ueam dela [...]s vtdetur, minus (que) in­terdum iri­buere quam par sit liberae hominis vol [...]tati. Sixt. Sene [...]. in Bib. sanct. l. 5 in Prefat. Nos nō mo­ueat Augu­stinus vel tantillum, &c. Episc. Bi­tont. com­ment in Ep. ad Rom. ca. 5. p. 270.

10. Saint Austen saith, In doing good none can bee free in will and act, vnlesse hee be free by him that said: If the Sonne free you, you are truely freed. Sixtus Senensis saith: Whilst Saint Austen doth contend ear­nestly against the Pelagians, for the defence of diuine Grace, [Page 343] hee doth seeme to fall into an o­ther pit, and sometimes attri­bute too little to Freewill: But saith the Bishop of Bitonto: Let not Saint Austen mooue vs at all: for it is proper ana pe­culiar to him, that when he op­posetth any errour, hee doeth it with that vehemencie, that hee seemes to fauour an other er­rour: euen so, when hee prose­cutes Arrius, hee seemes to fa­uour Sabellius; when Sabellius, Arrius; when Pelagius, the Ma­niches; when the Maniches, Pe­lagius: and this is very consi­derable, and ought especially to be noted in him.

Lastly, Saint Austen (vp­on the words of Christ) saith, Thou art Peter, August de verb. Dom. Serm. 13. and vp­on this Rocke which thou hast confessed, vpon this Rock which [Page 344] thou hast knowne, saying, Thou art Christ, the Son of the liuing God, will I build my Church— for the Rocke was Christ. Stapl. prin­cip. doct. lib. 6. c. 3. Sta­pleton answers: It was lapsus humanus, an humane errour, caused by the diuersitie of the Greek and Latin tongue, which either hee was ignorant of, or marked not. Bell. li 1. de Pont. ca. 10. Bellarmine re­plies: Saint Austen was deceiued by the ignorance onely of the Hebrew tongue. But Al­bertus Pigghius concludes with a witnes against him:Nusquam hanet, nus­quam figit, sed vbi (que) explorat, v­bi (que) tentat, et subera­tur omnia, et quicquid probabile occcurrit alicubi am­plectitur, qd cōtinuò post displicet & retractatur —Ociose se­cum inqui­rētu et tentātis omnia Alb. Piggh. Hier. Eccles. lib. 3. c. 5. Nusquam haeret, nusquam fi­git. He neuer resolues certain­ly vpon any thing, but (as if he were idle-headed, giuen to crotchets) hee fetcheth about this way, and that way, and at length lighting vpon some pro­babilitie, layeth hold on it, and [Page 345] then dislikes it, and presently retracts it.

Thus, if wee may credit their best learned Roma­nists, St. Austen did not a­gree constantly with him­selfe, nor others: his do­ctrine is opposed by the consent of Fathers in the Trent Councell: hee vsed not his owne meaning in fighting against heretiques: If hee had been liuing in these dayes, he would haue been of an other mind: He is inconstant, and fixeth in certaine vpon nothing, but as an idle-headed man; full of crotchets, one while hee resolues, an other while he retracts it.

You haue heard Saint Austens confession, and our [Page 346] aduersaries solution, touch­ing the chiefe poynts in question betwixt vs; wher­by as yet I see no cause why the Romanists should brag of the ancient Fathers in generall, nor of St. Austen in particular.

I proceed in the next place to examine the faith of Au­sten the Monke, that it may appeare, whether that do­ctrine, which hee published heere in England, aboue a thousand yeeres since, bee consonant to our Religion, or the doctrine of the Ro­man Church.

SECT. XIII. Saint Gregory pretended to bee the Founder of the Romane Religion in England, by sending Austen the Monke for conuersion of this Nation; in his vndoubted writings, di­rectly opposeth the Romish faith, in the maine poynts thereof.

AVsten the Monke, was sent into Eng­land by Gregorie the Great, about the yeere 600, and is tearmed by the Ro­manists of this latter age, Englands Apostle. To say nothing of the haughtinesse of his person, (through [Page 348] whose pride and contempt twelue hundred poor Chri­stians and holy men of Ban­gor were murdered, as it is related by Venerable Bede, Bede. Hist. Ang l. 2. c. 2) let vs obserue the doctrine of that age: and because we haue no Records of the Monkes doctrine, let vs re­flect vpon Gregory the Great, whose writings are extant; and who without doubt, professed the substance of that Faith, which by his Warrant and Commission was then published in Eng­land by Austen the Monke.

It is the generall vote of the Romanists in this latter age, that the Faith which Gregorie deliuered in his dayes, was so true and Ca­tholike, that If an Angell from [Page 349] heauen should teach other do­ctrine, then that we haue recei­ued from Gregorie, wee are not to heare him. Canus the Bi­shop of Canaries well vnder­stood, that this Assumpsit was of too large an extent, and therfore wisely by way of preuention, giues this ca­ueat to the Reader:Canus li. 11 loc. Theol. c. 6. p. 540. It is fit­ting for a Diuine to bee admo­nished, and not suddenly to bee perswaded, that all things are perfect which great and learned Authors haue written: as for example, Gregorie and Bede, the one in his Historie of Eng­land, the other in his Bookes of Dialogues, haue published such miracles, commonly receiued and beleeued, which the censu­rers of this age will thinke to be (doubtfull) and vncertaine. [Page 350] I speake not this to decline the doctrine of Gregorie, Quid est hoc quaeso te qd in hi [...] ex­tremis tem­poribus t [...]m multa de a­nimabus, &c Greg. Dial lib 4. cap. 40. for howsoeuer many ceremo­nies and strange opinions, through visions and appari­tions of dead men, (which Gregorie in his Dialogues complained of) sprung vp in his dayes, yet the princi­pall poynts of doctrine did as yet remaine sound and stable: so that (setting aside his Dialogues, which are but Aniles fabulae, no way fit to prooue Articles of Faith:) In his vndoubted Wri­tings, there will bee found few or no substantiall points which are not agreeable to the Tenets of our Church, and altogether different frō the Roman: and that this may become more manifest [Page 351] to the Reader, I haue com­pared the Trent Doctrine and ours with Gregorie, that by parallelling the Articles on both sides, the Antiqui­tie of the true Church may visibly appeare by the faith of Gregory.

The Canonicall Bookes of Scripture.

Gregorie] We doe not a­misse,Non inordi­natè agimꝰ si ex libris licet nō Ca­nonicis, sed tamen ad e­dificationē Ecclesia edi­tis testimo­nium profe­ramꝰ. Greg. Moral lib. 19. ca 13. Artic 6. if wee bring forth a testi­mony out of (the bookes of Maccabees) which though they are not Canonicall, yet are they set forth for the edification and instruction of the Church.

Church of England] The books of Maccabees the Church doeth reade for example of life [Page 352] and instruction of manners; but yet it doth not apply them to e­stablish any doctrine.

Conc. Trid. Sess 4. Church of Rome] If a­ny shall refuse the books of Mac­cabees for Canonicall Scrip­tures, let him be accursed.In hoc volu­mine omnia quae crudiūt cuncta quae aedificant scripta cōti­nētur. Greg. in Ezek. l. 1. Hom 9. A [...]tic. 6. Scripturae sine Traditionibꝰ nec fuerūt simplicitèr ne­cessaria nec sufficientes Bell. de ver. D nō scrip. c. 4. et Conc. Trid. Sess. 4 decret. 1.

The sufficiencie of the Scriptures.

Gregory.] Whatsoeuer ser­ueth for edification and instru­ction, is conteined in the Vo­lume of the Scriptures.

Church of England.] Holy Scriptures containe all things necessarie to saluation.

Church of Rome] Scrip­tures, without Traditions, are neither simply necessary, nor sufficient.

Reading of the Scrip­tures.

Gregorie.] The Scripture is an Epistle sent from God to his creature, (that is, to Priest and people) If thou receiuest a letter from an earthly King,Greg. lib. 4. Epist 40. ad Theedor. Medicum. This instru­ctiō was to a Physician a lay man. thou wilt neuer rest nor sleepe before thou vnderstand it. The King of Heauen, and God of men and Angels, hath sent his Letters vnto thee for the good of thy soule, and yet thou neg­lectest the reading of them. I pray thee therefore studie them, and daily meditate of the words of thy Creator, and learne the heart and mind of God, in the words of God.

Church of England] The Scriptures are Manna, and gi-giuen vs from heauen, to feed [Page 354] vs in the desert of this world.Iewel in his Treatise of the holy Scriptures pag. 46. 47. Let vs reade them, and behold them, and reason of them, and learne one of another, what pro­fit may come to vs by them: — for all haue right to heare the word of God, all haue need to know the word of God.

Index lib. prohib in obseruat. circa Regu­lam. 4. Church of Rome] Wher­as it is manifest by experience, that if the holy Bible should be permitted (to be read) in the vulgar tongue, it would bring more danger then benefit, by the rashnesse of men; therefore they are forbidden to the common people,See Hard. in Iewel. Art 15. diuis. 3. yea and to Regulars to reade or retaine any vulgar Translation, without the licence of their Bishops, or Inqui­sitor.

The Reall Presence.

Gregorie. Preciosi sā ­guin [...] effu­sione genus humanum Christus re­demit, & sacrosancti vi [...]sficies car poris sui & sanguinis mysterium mēbris suis tribu [...], cu­ius percep­tione corpus suum qd est Ecclesia, pascitur & potatur, ab­luitur & sanctifica­tur. Greg. in 6 Psal. poenitent.] Christ with the effusion of his most precious blood, redeemed mankind, and giueth vnto his members the most holy mysteries of his quic­kening body and blood, by the participation whereof, his body which is the Church, is nouri­shed with meat and drinke, and is washed and sanctified. Here Gregorie makes a plaine dif­ference betweene the body of Christ offered on the Crosse, and the mysterie of that body offered in the Sa­crament: and that we might know, it was not a corporall but a mysticall body, he tels vs, Christs Body is the Church: and that wee might yet fur­ther know, the members of [Page 356] Christ were not fed with reall flesh and blood: for, there is nothing more absurd, (saith Bellarmin) then to think the substance of our flesh should bee nourished with the flesh of Christ:Bellar. de Euch. lib. 2. cap 4. hee tels vs, they are nourished with meat & drinke, and withall are washed and sanctified, by the mysterie of his body. And to remoue all imaginations of a carnal presence, hee proclaimes it elsewhere in the words of an Angel: Greg. Hom. in Euan 21 Hee is risen, hee is not here: Christ (saith hee) is not here in the presence of his flesh, yet hee is absent no where, by the presence of his Deitie.

Church of England] The Body of Christ is giuen,Iewel Art. 5. p. 238. taken and eaten in the Supper, onely after a heauenly and spirituall [Page 357] maner. Wee seeke Christ aboue in heauen, and imagine not him to bee bodily present vpon the earth.

Church of Rome. Conc. Trid. Sess. 13. c. 1.] In the Sacrament of the Eucha­rist, after consecration, our Lord Iesus Christ, true God and man, is truely, really, and substantial­ly contained vnder the forme of sensible things.Si fuissent mille hostiae in mille lo­cis, eo tem­pore quo Christꝰ per­pendit in cruce, Cristꝰ fusset crucifi [...]ous in mille locis Holcot in Sentent (que) Insomuch as Holcot the Iesuit professeth, If there had been a thousand Hosts in a thousand places, at that very time when Christ hung vpon the Crosse, then had Christ been crucified in a thou­sand places.

Priuate Masse.

Gregorie.] Let not the Priest alone celebrate Masse: [Page 358] for as hee cannot performe it without the presence of the Priest and people:Sacerdos Missam solꝰ nequaquam celebret. Greg. in lib. Capitulari cap. 7. apud. Cassand. Liturg. 33. p. 83. so likewise it ought not to bee performed by one alone: for there ought to be present (some) to whom he ought to speake, and who in like maner ought to answere him: and hee must withall remember that saying of Christ, Where two or three are gathered together in my name, I will be present with them.

Church of England.] The breaking of bread which is now vsed in the Masse,Iewel. Art. 1. in fine signifieth a distribution of the Sacrament vnto the people; as Saint Au­sten saith vnto Paulinus, It is broken, to the end it may bee diuided.

Church of Rome.] If any shall say that Priuate Masses, in [Page 359] which the Priest alone doth Sa­cramentally communicate,Conc. Trid. Can. 8. Sess. 22. are vnlawfull, and therefore ought to bee abrogated: let him bee accursed.

Communion in both kinds.

Gregorie.] You haue lear­ned what the blood of the Lamb is, not by hearing,De Conse­crat Dist. 2. Q [...]i [...] sit sanguis §. but by drin­king. Againe, The blood of Christ is not powred into the hands of vnbeleeuers, but into the mouthes of the faithfull (people.)

Church of England.] The Cup of the Lord is not to bee denied to the lay people:Arti [...]. 30. for both the parts of the Lords Sa­crament, by Christs ordinance and commandement ought to be ministred to all Christian men alike.

[Page 360] Church of Rome.] Al­though our Sauiour did exhi­bite in both kinds,Conc. Trid. cap. 3. Sess. 21. yet if any shall say, the holy Catholique Church was not induced, for iust causes, to communicate the lay people vnder one kinde, and shall say they erred in so doing, let him be accursed.

Merit of workes.

Sunt non­nulli qui saluos se su­is viribꝰ exultāt suis (que) praecedenti­bus meritis redemptos se esse glori­antur, quo­rum profe­ctò assertio, inuenitur sibinetipsis contraria, quia dum Innocentes se asserunt, et redemp­tos, hoc ipsū in se redēp­tionis nomē euacuant. In 28 1. Iob l. 18. c. 22. Aliud est secundum opera, aliud propter ope­ra reddere. Idē 7. Psal, Poenit. Gregorie.] There are some which glory that they are saued by their owne strength, and brag that they are redeemed by their own precedent merits; but here­in they contradict themselues: for whilst they affirm that they are innocent, and yet redeemed, they frustrate the name of Re­demption in themselues. A­gaine, [Page 361] If the blessednesse of the Saints bee acquired by mercy, not by merits, how is it said, He will render to euery man accor­ding to his workes? If it bee according to his workes, how is it giuen of mercie? It is one thing (saith hee) to giue accor­ding to their workes, another thing to giue for their workes sake. And from this ground hee makes this his confes­sion. I pray to bee saued,Idem in 1. Psal. Paenit. not trusting to my merits, but pre­suming to obtaine that by thy mercie alone, which I hope not for by merit.

Church of England.] We are accounted righteous before God onely,Art. 11. by the merit of our Lord and Sauiour Iesus Christ, by Faith, and not our owne workes: For to haue affiance [Page 362] in our workes,Homily of goodworks as by merit of them to purchase to our selues remission of sinnes, and eternall life, is blasphemy.

Church of Rome.] Good workes are meritorious,Rhem. An­not. in Heb. 6. ver. 10. and the very cause of saluation, so farre that God should be vniust, if he rendered not Heauen for the same. Againe, All good works done by Gods grace, after the first justification,Idem in 2. Tim. 4.8. bee truely and properly meritorious, and fully worthy of euerlasting life, and that thereupon Heauen is the due and iust stipend, crowne or recompense, which God by his Iustice oweth to the persons so working by his grace, for hee rendreth or repayeth heauen, as a iust Iudge, and not onely as a mercifull Giuer; and the Crowne which hee payeth, is [Page 363] not onely of mercie, or fauour, or grace, but also of justice.

Worship of Images.

Gregorie.] In his Epistle to Serenus, Bishop of Masilia, saith: Greg. lib. 7. Epist. 109. Your Brotherhood seeing certaine worshippers of Images, broke the said Images, and cast them out of the Church: the zeale which you had, that no­thing made with hands should be worshipped, we praise: but wee thinke you should not haue broken them downe. For Pain­ting is therefore vsed in Chur­ches, that they which are vn­learned, may by sight reade that on the walles, which in bookes they cannot. Your brotherhood should therefore haue spared the [Page 364] breaking of them, and yet re­strained the people from wor­shipping them,Adorationē omnibꝰ mo­dis deuita. Lib. 9. Ep. 5. that the rude might haue had how to come by the knowledge of the Story, and yet the people not sinne in wor­shipping the picture.

Church of England.] The Romish doctrine concerning the worshipping and adoration,Art. 22. as well of Images, as of Reliques, is a fond thing, vainely inuen­ted, and grounded vpon no Warrant of Scripture, but ra­ther repugnant to the VVord of God.

Church of Rome.] Wee teach,Conc. Trid. Sess. 25. that the Images of Christ, the Virgin Mother of God, and other Saints, are chiefely in Churches to bee had, and retai­ned, and that due honor & wor­ship is to be giuen vnto them.

The Popes Supremacie.

Gregorie.Ego fiden­ter dico. Lib. 6. ep. 30 Mauricio Augusto. Idem lib. 6. ep 24. lib. 4. ep 32. 34. 36 38. 39.] I say confident­ly, Whosoeuer calls himselfe, or desires to be called the (Vniuer­sall Bishop) in the pride of his heart, is the forerunner of An­tichrist. For, the title of (vni­uersall Bishop) is the puffe of ar­rogancie, the word of pride, a new, pompous, a peruerse, foolish, a rash, a superstitious, a profane, an vngodly and wicked name, a name of singularitie, a name of errour, a name of hypocrisie, a name of vanitie, and a name of blasphemie. And writing to Eulogius Bishop of Alex­andria, hee makes this pro­fession: For mine owne part, Greg. lib. 7. ep. 30. I seeke to increase in vertues, and not in words; for if you call me Vniuersall Bishop, you denie [Page 366] your selues to be that, which you confesse to be wholly in me: but God forbid, let vs rather put farre from vs these words which puffe vp pride, and vanitie, and wound Charitie to the death.

Church of England.] It is plaine, that the Bishop of Rome challengeth this day a title that St. Peter neuer had, Iewel. Art. 4 Diuis. 4. that no holy nor godly man would euer take vpon him, that St. Gre­gorie vtterly refused, and de­tested, and called blasphemy.

Church of Rome.] The Supremacie of the Bishop of Rome may bee prooued by fif­teene seuerall Names or Titles,Bell. de Pōt. lib. 2. c. 31.as namely, the Prince of Priests, the High Priest, the Vicar of Christ, the vniuersall Bishop, and the like: and from those high and mightie Titles, [Page 367] they haue created this Ar­ticle of faith. Wee declare, Subesse Ro­mano Pont. omni huma­nae creaturae declaramꝰ, dicimus, de­finimus, & pronuncia­mus omninò esse de ne­cessitate sa­lutis. Bonif. 8. in extran. de Maior. & Obed. Cap. Vnam Sanctā &c. we pronounce, wee define, that euery creature vpon necessitie of saluation, must be subiect to the Bishop of Rome.

Thus briefly I haue giuen you the principall poynts of doctrine deliuered by Gregorie; and from these his seuerall confessions, I hope the Romanists will giue me leaue, to returne them their owne assertion: If an Angel from heauen teach other do­ctrine (Touching the books of Maccabees, the All-suffi­ciencie, and reading of the Scriptures, the Reall pre­sence, Priuate Masse, Com­munion in both kinds, Me­rit of workes, Worship of Images, and the Popes Su­premacy) [Page 368] I say with our ad­uersaries, If an Angel frō hea­uen teach other doctrine then (in these particulars) we haue receiued from Gregorie, we are not to heare him.

I proceed from Fathers to Councels; and vpon a re­viewe of the Fathers Do­ctrine, I will here conclude, Since the ancient Doctors are no Rules of our Faith, nor haue any power to bind (as Bel­larmine▪ confesseth,) since their bookes are sometimes purged, their authorities sometimes condemned as spurious and counterfet, as their Inquisitors confesse; since their Expositions with an vniforme consent, are sometimes decreed for an Article of Faith,Bulla Pij 4. Artic. 2. sometimes [Page 369] declined by their best lear­ned Romanists, as namely, Card. Bellarmine, Andradius, Card. Cajetan, and Card. Ba­ronius professe: And lastly, since the Scripture is the most certaine and most safe Rule of faith, Scriptura regula cre­dendi cer­tissima, tu­tissimaque. Bellar. (as it is acknowled­ged on both sides:) I say to leaue this certaine and safe rule, and to follow the Fathers in all, and tread in their steps, as children doe in sport, it is Via Dubia, a doubtfull and vncertaine way, it is Via De­via, a wandring and By-way.

SECT. XIIII. Councells which are so highly extold and opposed against vs, were neither called by lawfull authoritie, or to the right ends, as is confessed by ingenious Romanists.

ECckius the Romanist tells vs, the authori­tie of Councells is of that consequence,Tollatur Cōciliorum authoritas, et omnia in Ecclesia e­runt ambi­gua, dubia, pendentia, incert [...], nā omnes mox redibūt hae­reses. Ecck. Ench. Art. de Concil. that if they should be taken away, All things would become am­biguous, doubtfull, wauering, vncertaine, and all heresies would reuiue againe. And that the Romish proselyts might knowe, what obedience ought to be giuen to Coun­cels, [Page 371] Gregory de Valentia giues them this caueat:Si Synodus Episcopalis aut cōmu­nis cōsensus plurium Theologorū statueret a­liquam pro­positionem esse proposi­tā ab Eccle­sia vt de fi­de — tunc talis tene­retur, &c. Valent. in Tom. 3. disp. 1. q. 2. punct. 5. If you finde but an Episcopall Synod, or con­sent of diuers Diuines onely, af­firming such a doctrine to bee the sentence of the Church, you are bound to beleeue it, though it be a lie. Pardon me if I be­leeue them not: for our ad­uersaries giue iust cause of suspition, when their chie­fest respect tends to the ho­nour of Traditions, of Fa­thers, of Councels, and the sacred Word is made a by-word of Obscuritie and In­sufficiencie.

I speake not this, as if our Church did decline the au­thoritie of Councells; for wee professe that Generall Councels, are the represen­tatiue Body, and as it were a [Page 372] little Modell of the whole Church. We approoue the first foure Generall Coun­cells, confirmed by our Church,Eliz. 1. Whitak. Rat. 4. vers. Camp. and Acts of Parlia­ment: wee acknowledge with reuerend Whitakers, The name of Councels is hono­rable, their credit singular, and their authority of great esteeme: nay more, wee testifie with learned Bellarmine, Bell de Ec­cles. & Cō ­cil. li. 1. c. 10 in Initio. that Ge­nerall Councells are very profi­table, and in some sort necessary (for the suppressing of he­resies) yet (saith hee) they are not absolutely and simply ne­cessary, and of this I am easily perswaded for this reason. First, because the Primitiue Church for the first three hundred yeres had no Generall Councells, and yet perished not: Againe, as the [Page 373] Church during those three hun­dred yeeres continued safe with­out generall Councells, so with­out doubt it might haue conti­nued three hundred yeres more, and againe six hundred yeeres after that, and so likewise a thousand yeeres more: for in those (first) times, there were many heresies, many schismes, many vices & abuses, all which, notwithstanding they wanted the assistance of generall Coun­cells, could not indanger the Catholike Church.

But admit that Councels were simply necessarie, (which Bellarmine denies) yet their calling must be answe­rable to their beginning, and therefore let vs first in­quire by what authoritie they were first called, and ob­serue [Page 374] how the Commission hath beene executed from time to time, by warrantie of the first Author.

We reade in the booke of Numbers, Num. 10.1, 2. that the Lord com­manded Moses to make two Trumpets of siluer, that hee might vse them for calling of the Assembly. Moses ac­cording to Gods Law, did assemble the people; and, saith the Text,Deut. 33.5. Moses was king in Iesurum, when the heads of the people, and the tribes of Israel gathered together. Moses then had Ius Regale, a Regall power, (although in propri­etie of speech hee were no King) and by this Regall power hee assembled the people, and this authoritie was executed by him as by a [Page 375] King. This right was assu­med after him by King Da­uid, by king Solomon, by king Iosiah, by king Iehoshaphat, and so from Moses to the Maccabees they all practised the same power of calling assemblies, as Kings & Prin­ces, and there was none of Gods Prophets, I say not a­ny one that either opposed, or prohibited these assem­blies. At the comming of Christ this commission was renewed, but not altered, there was no new order for calling them, other then had bin taken in the old Law, & assoon as kings receiued the Christian faith, they execu­ted the same power of the Trumpets, which was first granted to Moses.

[Page 376]The first Councel of Nice it was the first and best Ge­nerall Assembly that was summoned in the Christian world, after the Apostles time; and this was called by the Emperor Constantine the Great.

The 2d. generall Coun­cell at Constantinople, was called by the Emperor The­odosius the elder.

The third at Ephesus, by the Emperor Theodosius the younger.

The fourth at Chalcedon, by the Emperor Valentinian and Martian. These foure generall Councels, are like­ned by Gregorie to the foure Euangelists, and these had their right calling by Kings and Emperours, and not [Page 377] by the Bishop of Rome.

If wee looke vpon parti­cular Councels, it will ap­peare, they were likewise called by Kings and Princes in their seuerall dominions, for many ages. The first Councell of Arles was cal­led by Constantine the Great. The Councell of Aquileia, was called by the Emperors Valentinian and Theodosius: The first of Orleance, by king Clodoueus: the second of Or­leance, by Chidelbert the French King; and this ma­ner of calling assemblies by Kings and Emperors con­tinued from Moses to Con­stantine, and from Constantine to Arnulphus, aboue 2400. yeeres: for otherwise if this new assertion must take [Page 378] place: The Pope must call Councels: the first foure Ge­nerall Councells, which all Christians had in such reue­rence, not one of them is a lawfull Councell, nay, saith our Reuerend and lear­ned B. Andrewes, D. Andrews in his Ser­mon of cal­ling Assem­blies. The Church of Christ hath to this day neuer a General Councell, Vnâ liturâ, with one wipe wee dash them out all, wee haue neuer a one, no not one. And that you may know it is not the testimo­nie of the Protestants alone, Cardinall Cusanus doth wit­nesse with vs,Cusan. Cō ­cord. Cath. lib. 3. ca. 13. & 16. that all the Generall Councels to the eight, inclusiuely, were all called by the Emperours: and that wee may iustly charge the Pope of Vsurpa­tion, both in calling, and [Page 379] assuming a preheminence of place and dignitie in Councels,Semper in­uenio Impe­ratores et Iudices suos cum Senatu Primatum habuisse & officiū Praesi­dentia per interloquu­tiones, et ex consēnsu Sy­nod [...] sine mandato conclusiones et iudicia fecisse. Cu­san de Con. lib. 3. c. 16. the Cardinall makes this confession: I e­uermore finde, that the Em­perors and their Iudges with the Senate, had the gouerne­ment, and Office of Presidence, by hearing and conferring of matters, and that they made Conclusions, and Iudgements with the consent of the Councel, and without any further Com­mission.

Those men therefore that are so earnest in calling vp­on vs for Councells, should first shew vs the lawfull cal­ling of their assemblies. If Demetrius and his fellowe craftsmen will assemble to­gether of their owne heads, and keepe a shouting and [Page 380] crying for the great Diana of their Religion, this rowt will prooue a ryot, and is punishable by the Lawes of God and man: away there­fore with this confusion, a­way with Demetrius assem­blies. If Pope Innocent the Third will assemble in his owne name, contrary to the Commission granted to Kings and Princes, by ex­presse warrant from Gods owne mouth; if, I say, con­trary to Gods command, after a continued succession in the right of Kings and Princes for 2400 yeeres, he will vsurpe the right of cal­ling Councells, the Pope will not bee found Inno­cent, nor his assemblies law­full: for the Towne-clerke [Page 381] of Ephesus could tell Dome­trius and his fellowes; If they enquire any thing, Acts 19.39. concerning matters, it (must) bee determined in a lawfull As­sembly.

The promises of Christ, no doubt, are many and gracious to his Church, but they are annexed to a con­dition, (if they come together in his Name) the condition then being once broken, the Obligation to the Church and Councell, becommeth voyde, of none effect. It will not be amisse therefore to vnderstand what it is to assemble in Christs Name, and then see whether the Church of Rome hath per­formed that second dutie in her assemblies.

[Page 382]It cannot be denied, that they are said to assemble in Christs Name, whom nei­ther respect of priuate gaine induceth, nor the ambitious desire of honour inuiteth, nor the prick of hatred and enuie incite and driue for­ward, but whom the infla­med loue of peace, and the feruent affections of Chri­stianitie impell, and not the spirit of contention. Sure­ly these conditions are re­quisite to their right cal­ling; and these were anci­ently performed in the first foure Generall Councells, (to which our Church sub­scribeth:) but as their owne Cardinal Cusanus protested, that the authority of Coun­cels doth not depend vpon [Page 383] the Pope; so likewise their owne learned Ferus profes­seth, that In matters of Faith, and things which concerne the conscience, it is not sufficient for them to say, Wee will and com­mand, but you must consider in what manner the Apostles dealt in their Assemblies: they came together in simplicitie of heart, seeking onely Gods glory, and the saluation of others, Nos aliter conuenimus nempe cum magnâ pō ­pâ, nos (que) ip­sosquaerimꝰ, at (que) n [...]bis [...]ollic [...]ur, nihil nobis non licere de plenitu dine pote­statis, & quomodò spiritꝰ san­ctꝰ eiusmodi conuentus probare pos­sit. Ferus super Acts 15. no maruell therefore if the Spirit of God was in that Councell: but (saith hee) Nos aliter con­uenimus: Our meeting is in another manner; namely with great pompe, and seeking our selues, and promising to our selues licence vpon fulnesse of power to doe any thing; and this being so, how is it possible for the Spirit of God to approue [Page 384] such assemblies. Heere then wee haue our learned Ad­uersaries confessions, that two principall conditions anciently in vse, are both abrogated by the latter Councels; the one is, The Pope calls Councells, that hath no right to call them: the other is, That they assemble in their owne name, and for their owne end, not for the Catho­lique peace, and Christian Charitie. And thus much briefely concerning the au­thoritie of Calling Coun­cells.

Let vs take a short view of Councels in all ages, and withall let vs adde to the Popes vnlawfull Calling, the errors of Councels, the [Page 385] vncertaintie of their Ca­nons, the manifest forge­ries of ancient Decrees, the palpable and grosse sugge­stions of new deuised Acts, with their senselesse con­demnation of true Decrees and Canons, that make a­gainst their Romish Faith, and Trent Doctrine, and tell mee if these men haue any cause or reason to e­quall Councells with the Scriptures, or to build vp­on them in matters of Faith, or to claime them all for theirs, when by their owne ensuing testimonies, they are doubtfull which are right, which are false, which are lawfull, which are counterfet. And lastly, when they are not agreed [Page 386] amongst themselues, whe­ther Councels rightly cal­led, are infallible, or stand subiect vnto errour.

SECT. XV. Councels, which our aduersaries pretend, as a chiefe bulwarke of their faith, giue no support at all to the Romish Religion as it is prooued by particular obiections made against se­uerall Councells, in all ages by the Romanists themselues.

CArdinall Bellarmine, who formerly told vs, the Church of God might safely subsist without Councels, giues vs likewise to vnderstand by [Page 387] way of preuention,Libri Con­ciliorū neg­ligenter conseruati sunt, & multis vi­tiis scatent. Bel. de Con­cil. l. 3, c. 2. that the Bookes of Councells, being neg­ligently kept, doe abound with many errours: and heereby we may guesse what is like to be the doctrine of those Councells that are guiltie of such errours; and what will bee the issue of that doctrine that depends vp­on such Councels. Whe­ther errors haue crept in by the negligence of the kee­pers, I cannot tell, but sure I am, many generall and par­ticular Councels haue erred, many Decrees and Canons of Councells, which are produced for the Romane Religion, are acknowledged by themselues to bee spuri­ous, & counterfet: and ma­ny true Canons and Coun­cels, [Page 388] which make against their Trent faith, are con­demned by our aduersaries as fallible and erronious, as shall appeare by their owne seuerall confessions in all a­ges, from the time of Christ till the dayes of Luther.

The first Age, to 100 yeeres.In the first Age.] The Councell at Hierusalem, ga­thered vnder the High Priest, wherein Caiphas was President,Marke 14. sought testimonie against Iesus: and excommu­nicated those who confes­sed Iesus to be Christ. Errauit in fide pernici­osissime Cai­phas cum v­ [...]iuerso Cō ­cilio cū iu­dicauit Ie­sum blas­phemasse. Bellar. de Conc. auth. lib. 2. c. 8. Bellar­mine tells vs, Before the com­ming of Christ, the Councels of the Iewes could not erre; but (saith hee) Caiphas with the whole Councell did erre most pernitiously, when they adiud­ged Christ a blasphemer. And [Page 389] this may serue for a leading case, to shew that Councels may erre, as they haue erred in the first Age.

In the second Age.The 2 Age, Ann. 100. to 200.] In the yeere 102, the Councel of Antioch is cited by Gret­zerus, by Turrian, by Baroni­us, for the Worship of Ima­ges: yet neither Merlin, nor Crabbe, nor Surius, nor Ni­cholinus, Co [...]e cen­sura Patrū. pag. 237. publishers of the Councells euer mention it; and Binius who produceth it, doeth acknowledge to haue receiued it from Baro­nius, and Baronius returnes his Author for the Iesuite Turrian, and Turrian profes­seth that Pamphilus found it in Origens Librarie. And this may serue to shew, that some Councels are deuised [Page 390] to proue the Trent doctrine, and the ra [...]her, because wor­ship of Images requires An­tiquitie, and Consent of Bi­shops, to proue it an Article of Faith.

The 3 Age. Ann. 200. to 300.In the third Age] In the yeere 258, the third Coun­cell of Carthage had foure­score and seuen Bishops; but saith Binius: Huius Pro­uincialis The Catholique Church doeth not receiue the Decrees of this Councell. Concilii de­creta non recipit Ca­tholica Ec­clesia. Bin. in marg. Concil. p. 149. And the reason is pregnant, This Synod toucheth the Popes Supremacie: for when as Stephanus Bishop of Rome called himselfe Episcopus E­piscoporum, The Bishop of Bi­shops, Saint Cyprian and the whole Councell opposed that new Title. And this may serue to prooue that [Page 391] some Councels rightly cal­led, are discarded by our aduersaries, when they make against their Trent faith.

In the fourth Age] In the yeere 317,The 4. Age Ann. 300. to 400. the Councell of Sinuessa is pretended to con­sist of 300 Bishops, besides Presbyters and Deacons; and this Councell is cited especially for the Popes Su­premacie: yet Binius, the publisher of the Councels professeth:Doctissimo­rū plurimi hac Acta spuria & nullius pon­deris esse, validis sanè argumentis probare co­nati sunt. Concil. Si­nuess. Bin. p. 184. that this Coun­cell Although it deserue great credit for the Martyrologies of the Church, yet very many learned men account the Actes to bee spurious, and of no force and validitie. And this may shew the faith of their Supre­macy is grounded vpon vn­certain & doubtful Coūcels.

[Page 392]The first Generall Coun­cell of Nice was called in the yeere 325, and is cited by Bellarmine in the 69 Ca­non,Bellar. de Vnct. li. 1. cap 4. to proue Extreame Vn­ction a Sacrament, and Mr. Hart saith, This Councell hath 80 Canons, and in those Ca­nons the Patriarkes are said to rule their subiects, as the Pope is head of all the Patriarkes, like Peter. Yet 60 of these Canons were denied by A­lipius Bishop of Tagasta, by Cyril Bishop of Alexandria, by Atticus Bishop of Con­stantinople, and by St. Austen, and the Councell of Africa, who allowed only twentie; and,Raynold. & Hart. cap 9. Diuis. 2. p. 575. saith Contius their Law­yer: Their bastardie is proued euen by this, that no man, no not Gratian himselfe durst alleadge [Page 393] them. And this may serue to shew, that some counter­fet Canons by their owne confessions, are produced for their doctrine of Faith and Sacraments.

The Councell of Elibe­ris] In the yeere 328 de­creed,Placuit pi­cturas in Ecclesia non debere. Canon 36. Suspicor in illo Canone imposturam Bar. An. ad an. 57. nu. 121. Bell de I­mag. l. 2. c. 9 That no Images should bee set vp in Churches: Baro­nius answeres: I suspect some iugling in this Canon. Bellar­mine answers: It was a Coun­cell consisting but of nineteene Bishops, & a Prouinciall Coun­cell, not confirmed, (by the Pope) and it seemeth to haue erred in other Decrees. Heere one Cardinall seemes to al­low the Councell, but not the Decree against Images; the other disallowes the whole Councell as fallible, [Page 394] both in that and other De­crees. Howsoeuer this may serue to shew, that there were Protestant Bishops in those dayes, who made pub­lique protestation against making and worshipping of Images, and yet neither Ca­nons nor Councels must be allowed, if they make a­gainst an Article of their new Creed.

The Councell of Millan was cited in the yeere 355, and was vniuersall, and con­sisted of three hundred and more Bishops: and yet this Councell did erre in the cause of Athanasius: Dyonisius. Eusebius. Paulinus. Lucifer. Rodanus. Zozom. l. 4. c. 8. for (saith Zozomen) Whereas 300 of the Westerne Bishops had consented that Athanasius should bee de­posed from his Bishopricke, there [Page 395] were onely fiue against fifteene score that withstood it.

The Councell of Arimi­num was cited in the yeere 360, and was vniuersall, and consisted of 600 Bishops:Multis pau­corum frau­de deceptis. Aug. contr [...] Maxim. lib. 3. cap. 14. but (saith Austen) Hereticall impietie vnder an hereticall Emperour assayed to ouerthrow the trueth, the multitude being deceiued by the subtiltie of a few. And saith Hierom: Nomine v­nitatis et fi­dei infideli­tas scripta est. Hier. ad­vers. Lucif. In the name of vnitie and faith, Infidelitie (was decreed) and written. And these are Eui­dences, that generall Coun­cels haue erred, & may erre.

In the fift Age] In the yere 455,The 5. Age Ann. 400. to 500. the generall Coū ­cell of Chalcedon was called; it consisted of 630 Bishops, and decreed,Conc. Chal. Can. 28. that the Church of Rome should haue the prima­cy, [Page 396] because the city of Rome was the Empire of the whole world. This reason was so vnplea­sing to Pope Leo at that time and the Romanists in these daies,Bellar. de Rom. Pont. l. 2. c. 17. that C. Bellarmine cō ­plaines: It was the Decree of a great Councell, but not law­fully made, and therefore of no force and authoritie: for (saith he) not onely the Popes Legates reiected that Decree in the Councell, but Pope Leo him­selfe, who confirmed the rest of the Decrees, condemned it. And this may serue to shew that the reasons and decrees of 630 Bishops, are no de­crees, no reasons, if the Pope or his Legats doe not allow them.

The 6. age Ann. 500. to 600.In the sixt Age] The fift Generall Councell of Con­stantinople [Page 397] was called, in the yeere 553, wherein both Pope Vigilius himselfe,Crak. def. Eccl. Angl. cap. 12. and three Chapters of his Decrees, were condemned as hereticall, and accursed. Lege Libe­rati Breuia­rium ca. 22. & Pont. fi­cale in vitâ Vigilij. And this may serue to shew, that the Pope may bee an heretike, that a Coūcell is aboue the Pope, who haue authority to con­demne him or his Decrees, as they find occasion; and that the Decrees of former Councels may be corrected by the latter; and conse­quently, there is no certain­tie, no infallibilitie in Pope or Councels.

In the seuenth Age] The sixt Generall Councell was called at Constantinople, The 7. Age. Ann. 600. to 700. in the yeere 681, and is pretended by Crabbe & Surius to haue [Page 398] nine Canons, whereof the se­uenth is cited by Bellarmine for Inuocation of Saints,Bel de fact. Beat. l 5. c. 19. & l. 2. de Confir. cap 40. Surius Can­did. lectori. yet their owne Surius tells vs: Those nine Canons are falsely ascribed to the sixt Synod; yea, those Canons are false and coun­terfet, Caranza Sum Conc. in Concil 6 Constant. saith Caranza. Againe, this Synode condemned Pope Honorius for a Mono­thelite. Put saith Bellarmine, wee may safely say, Tutò dicere possumus. Bel de Pōt. lib 4. c. 11. the Fathers did vndeseruedly reckon Ho­norius amongst heretikes, be­ing deceiued by false reports, and not vnderstanding the E­pistles of Honorius. Hence we may obserue, that some­times an Article of Faith, (as namely, Inuocation of Saints) is confirmed by our aduersaries, from the autho­ritie of a generall Councel, [Page 399] when it is knowne and con­fessed by themselues to bee counterfet: and sometimes the Pope himselfe is adiud­ged an heretike by a Gene­rall Councell, when as for the honour of the Popes Supremacie and Infallibili­tie, the whole Councel must bee condemned. Lastly, if from the Decrees of this Generall Councel, we shall note the errours of Coun­cells in generall: Albertus Pigghius a learned man (saith Canus) doeth demonstrate by many arguments, Canus loc. Theol. li. 5. cap. 1. that the Acts which beare the name of the sixt and seuenth (Generall) Councels, containe many errors.

In the eight Age] The second Councell of Nic [...], The 8. Age Ann. 700. to 800. called in the yeere 788, and [Page 400] termed (the Seuenth General Councell:) pronounced A­nathema against Pope Hono­rius. What answere there­fore can bee made to this Councell?Bell. de Pōt. lib. 4. c. 11. Bellarmine re­plies: This Councell was de­ceiued by the Presidents of for­mer Councels. This generall Councell then did not one­ly erre, but by this rule wee hath no certaintie, that other Councells are free from errour. And to speake plainely and truely, this ac­cursed Councell, that by blood and vsurpation first set afoot the worship of I­mages: This Synod (saith V­spergensis) was reiected in the Councel of Frankford, Vsperg. an. 793. & [...]ig. de Act. 6. & 7. Syn. ad Lectorem. as vtter­ly void, and not to be named the Seuenth, nor any thing else.

[Page 401]In the ninth Age] In the yeere 867,The 9. Age. Ann. 800. to 9 [...]0. the Eight Gene­rall Councell of Constanti­nople decreed with the con­sent of 383 Bishops, that whomsoeuer Photius, Turrian. li. de 6. 7. & 8. Synod p 93 Patriarke of Constantinople did depose or excommunicate, the Pope might not restore nor absolue; and whomsoeuer the Pope did de­pose or excommunicate, Photius might not absolue nor restore. Touching this Synod,Bellar. de Conc. auth. lib. 2. c. 11. Bel­larmine answers: This Coun­cell did erre, because the Popes Legates did contrary to the Popes instructions. He that shal read the Decrees & Canons of a Generall Councell, rati­fied and declared by almost 400 Bishops, would thinke it strange, that they al could erre in a point of faith, viz. [Page 402] touching the Popes Supre­macie; and it is no lesse to be wondred, that the Popes Legats, (either through ig­norance or wilfulnes) should so much digresse from the Popes instructions, as to de­termine things contrary to his command: but the truth is, as the former Councell (by the Cardinals confessi­on) was led by the Presi­dents of other Councels, to oppose the Popes Supre­macy: so likewise this Coū ­cell had power and autho­ritie in their dayes, to create and confirme their Decrees and Canons against Head and members, notwithstan­ding the Pope or his Le­gats had imposed contrary instructions.

[Page 403]In the tenth Age] In the yeere 963,The 10. age Ann. 900. to 1000. a Roman Coun­cell vnder Otho the Empe­rour was called, wherein Pope Iohn the twelfth was deposed, and Leo the eighth was substituted in his room. This Synod (saith Binius) was vnlawfull, Bin Not. in Conc. Rom. sub Ottone. p. 155. because the Bishops assembled without the Popes au­thoritie. And thus one Coū ­cell did erre, being misled by the presidents of others; a second, for want of good Instructions; a third, for want of a right calling: yet all tend to this, rather to condemne all Councels of errours, then suffer the Popes Supremacie, and an Article of Romish Faith, (which almost all Councels did condemne) should bee [Page 404] violated, and infringed.

The 11. age Ann. 1000 to 1100.In the eleuenth Age] In the yeere 1059, a Councell at Rome was called vnder Pope Nicholas the Second, Conc Rom. sub Nich. 2. where it was decreed: Not onely the Sacrament of Christs body, but the very body of Christ, was handled, broken, and chewed with the teeth of the faithfull. This decree was thought very doubtfull, and dangerous by the Roma­nists themselues; insomuch as the Glosse vpon Gratian giues this caueat:Grat de Conscer. d [...]st, 2. cap. Ego Beren­garius. Vnlesse you rightly vnderstand these words of Berengarius Recantation, you will fall into a greater heresie then Berengarius himselfe. And hence wee may learne, that a Councell confirmed by the Pope, (which Bellarmine [Page 405] saith, cannot erre) decreed that doctrine of faith, which neither the Pope, nor his Church dare avow for Ca­tholique Doctrine at this day.

In the twelfth Age] In the yeere 1120,The 12. age Ann. 1100. to 1200. the Coun­cell of Turon decreed, That the Eucharist giuen to sicke folkes,Burchard. lib. 5. c. 9. should bee dipped in the cup, that the Priest might truely say, The bodie (and blood) of our Lord Iesus Christ. Bellarmine saith,Bellar. de Euch. lib. 4. cap 26. that this Decree was amended: for in the third Councell of Bracara, the bread was forbidden to bee dipped; and it is obiected, that Christ did giue it in both kinds distinctly, the bread a­part by it selfe, and the cup by it selfe, although the Councell [Page 406] did not therevpon conclude it should bee giuen in both kinds. Idem. Ibid. Heere wee see Councell a­gainst Councell, and by Bel­larmines testimony, neither of both decreeing an Arti­cle of Faith according to Christs Institution.

The 13. age Ann. 1200. to 1300.In the thirteenth Age] In the yeere 1215, the Coun­cell of Lateran was called, and many things (saith Plati­na) were consulted vpon, Venêre multa tum quidem in consultatio­nē, nec de­cerni tamen quicquid a­pertè potuit Plat. de vitâ Innocent. 3. but nothing plainely defined, by reason of some wars which Pope Innocentius sought to compose, and died at Peru­sium. But Math. Paris, who was liuing at that time, pro­fesseth plainly,Conciliū il­lud genera­le qà more Papali grā ­dia fronte primâ praesetulit in vi­sum et scō ­mam desiit. Math Par. Hist. Min. That the same Generall Councell, which made a great flourish at the first, en­ded in ieasts and laughter, [Page 407] whereby all the Arch-bishops, Bishops, Abbots, Deanes, Arch­deacons, and all commers to the Councell were deluded. And hence wee may learne what certaintie of faith the Ro­manists are like to haue for their grand poynt of Tran­substantiation, (where it was first decreed for an Article of beliefe) when as (by the testimonie of their owne Writers) there was nothing plainely defined, and the whole Councell concluded in ieasts and laughter.

In the fourteenth Age] In the yeere 1302,The 14 age Ann. 1300. to 1400. Pope Boniface the Eight called a Councell at Rome, where he excommunicated Philip the French King, and about the same time, the King sum­mons [Page 408] a Councell at Paris, and therein appeales from the Popes sentence, and in­cites his Prelats and Barons against him,Naucl. An. 1300. & Parir. Mas. in vita Bo­nif. 8. and withall publikely declares, That the Pope was worthy to bee deposed, for heresie, for symonie, for murther, and other capitall of­fences. This is witnessed by their owne Nauclerus, and Papirius Massonus in the life of Boniface. Here you may see Councell against Coun­cell, the one contending for the Pope, the other for the Emperour, the Bishops of Italie maintaining Appeales to the Pope, the Bishops of France cōmanding Appeales to the Councell; the one withstanding the Suprema­cie of the Bishop of Rome, [Page 409] the other obeying it as an Article of Faith, yet both members of one body, and professing one and the same Faith, vnder one Head, the Pope. And hence we may obserue, there is no Vnitie betwixt Head and Mem­bers, no consent among the Bishops, to rely vpon Coun­cels.

In the fifteenth Age] In the yeere 1409,The 15. age Ann. 1400. to 1500. the Coun­cell of Pisa was called by the Pope, but is now con­demned by the Inquisitors in their Catalogue of bookes forbidden: and the reason is giuen by their owne Au­thors, Gregory the twelfth, Index Ex­purg. Ma­drid. p. 22. Platin. in Greg. 12. and Benedict the thirteenth were deposed, as Heretiques and Schismatiques: nay more, [Page 410] when Gregory, (who was a true and lawfull Pope by the testimony of Binius) had commanded his Cardinals,Anton. 3. part. ca. 5. & Bin. in Conc. Pisa. & Gobe. Pader. de hoc Conc. & exeo. Bin. that they should not at­tempt it: they, not regar­ding the Popes Supremacy, appealed from the Pope to a Ge­nerall Councell. And hence wee may obserue, that nei­ther Councel, nor the Popes Cardinalls, receiued the Popes Supremacie for a point of Faith, (as it is now taught & beleeued) for then certainly, as they would not haue opposed him, so they could neuer haue deposed him. And as concerning the validitie of Councels, it is manifest, that as two Popes were condemned by a Councell, so likewise that [Page 411] Councell (and the like may befall any Councell that tends to the preiudice of the Popes prerogatiue:) is reie­cted by the Inquisitors with a Deleatur, not to bee na­med amongst Councells. Briefly, there is no infallibi­litie, no certaintie in Coun­cels, nor in their Decrees & Canons; when they may be receiued or reiected at their pleasure, accordingly as they make for the Pope and his doctrine or against it, as may appeare by the ensuing testimonies of this Age.

The Councell of Con­stance] was called in the yeere 1414, by Iohn the 23 This Councell (saith Bellar­mine, touching the first Ses­sions, where they define the [Page 412] Councell aboue the Pope) was reiected by the Councell of Florence, Bellar de Concil. & Eccles. lib. 1 c. 7. and the last Councell of Lateran: but touching the last Session, (wherin the Communion in one kinde contrary to Christs Institu­tion) was decreed: Ab omni­bus Catholicis recipitur, Pope Martin the Fift, and all Catho­likes receiue them. And here­in, if you please, you may likewise credit their owne Gregory de Valentia, who af­firmeth vpon his credit, that the Decrees of the Councell of Constance, Greg. A­naly. Cath. l. 8. c. 7. haue no certaine au­thoritie, but those onely which were approued by Martine the Fift.

The Councel of Florence] was called in the yeere 1430, whereby it is preten­ded, [Page 413] that the Christians of Armenia and India, consen­ted to the Roman Church: but Binius the compiler of the Councels tells v [...]t is doubtfull and vncertaine, Whether the Armenians conti­nued at the Councell of Flo­rence; Bin. Tom. 4 Conc. p. 503 or whether after the de­parture of the Grecians, and Armenians, there were some o­ther Sessions of the Councel con­tinued, which haue not been re­corded, or whether there had beene an other Synod gathered the same yeere. Heere is no­thing but certaine vncer­taintie in this Councell.

The Councell of Basil was called in the yeere 1431, and is reputed Gene­rall, yet it is neither ge­nerally approued nor re­ceiued: [Page 414] For the Domini­cans obiect it was no lawfull Councell; the Minorites on the other side, answered it was true and h [...]ly, and called the Domi­nicans Heretikes for slandering the authoritie of the Councell: Iud. Viv. in Aug. lib. 20. de Civit. Dei c. 26. (and saith Viues) the matter had come to a shrewd passe, if Pope Sixtus had not forbid that dispute any longer. And for a conclusion of this poynt, Albertus Pigghius confident­ly affirmeth;Piggh. in Hierarch. That both the Councell of Constance, & Coun­cell of Basil erred shamefully: they decreed against the order of Nature, against the manifest Scriptures, against the autho­ritie of Antiquitie, and against the Catholike Faith. Conc. Con­stant. Sess. 4. And if you require a reason how they fell into this shamefull [Page 415] errour,Conc. Basil Sess. 33. the reason is preg­nant: They decreed the Coun­cell aboue the Pope.

Thus if wee reflect vpon the Decrees and Canons of Councels, many counterfet and spurious Acts are sug­gested and forged in be­halfe of their Romane Do­ctrine.Aquin. in opusc. cont. errores Grae­corum ad Vrbanum 4. Pont. Maximum. The Councell of Sinuessa is cited by Bellar­mine, to proue the Pope a­boue a Councell, yet this is condemned (saith Binius) by many learned Writers. The Councel of Chalcedon is ci­ted by Aquinas, to proue the Pope vniuersal Patriarke of the world; yet there is no such Decree extant in the Councel. The Councel of Nice, in the 69 Canon is ci­ted by Bellarmine, to proue [Page 416] Confirmation a Sacrament, yet that Canon is reiected by Baronius. The Councell of Constantinople, in the ninth Canon is produced for In­vocation of Saints; yet this Canon is reiected as coun­terfet (saith Caranza.)

Againe, looke vpon the true Canons and Decrees of Councels, if they be found to make against the Roman faith and doctrine, they are reiected or condemned as erronious. The Councel of Eliberis decreed against the making and worshipping of I­mages: what saith Baronius to this Councell: I suspect some iugling in this Canon. The Councel of Pisa is con­demned by the Inquisitors amōg the forbidden books: [Page 417] why? the cause is euident, it toucheth the Popes Su­premacie: for Gregorie the twelfth, and Benedict the thir­teenth, were deposed, saith Platina. The Councell of Laodicea is corrupted, and instead of Angels, they haue inserted the word Angles: why? the reason is preg­nant: it forbids Inuocation of Angels. The General Coū ­cel of Constantinople did erre, and the Popes Legats did contrary to the Popes In­structions; why? the rea­son is euident, the Councell decreed, that the Pope should not absolue whom the Patriarke did depose. The Councell of Constance is condemned of errour, onely in the first Sessions: [Page 418] Why? they decreed the Councell aboue the Pope. Againe, their Canons are receiued in the latter Sessi­ons: Why? they decreed the halfe Cōmunion which is now receiued for an Ar­ticle of Faith. And thus some Canons and Councels are forged, some true and Orthodox are condemned, some Sessions are approued by the Popes Legats, others reiected by the Popes Car­dinals and Prelates, inso­much it was rightly obser­ued by Ludouicus: V [...]v in Aug. de Ciuit. Dei l. 20. cap. 26. Then the Councells are of account with them, when they make for them, but if they make against them, they make no more account of them, then of a Couent of wo­men, pratling in a common [Page 419] bath, or a Weauers Shoppe.

I proceed to the six­teenth Age, wherein the Grand and admired Coun­cell of the Papall world; I meane the pretended Ge­nerall Councell of Trent shalbe examined.

SECT. XVI. The Councell of Trent, which is the maine pillar, and last resolution of the Romane Faith, is of small or no credit at all, because it was neither lawfully called, nor free, nor Generall, nor generally recei­ued by the Romanists them­selues.

AVgustus Thuanus, a chiefe Senator and Counsellour to the King of France, tels vs, that Pope Paul the third summo­ned a Councell at Mantua, and from thence translated it to Vincentia: and, because the Princes of Germanie [Page 421] could not agree vpon the place, assigned Trent, a citie seated vpon the confines of Germanie and Italie, where this Councell was called in the yeere 1546. This Coū ­cell then was called by the Popes vsurped power, not by the Emperor, & for that cause falls within the com­passe of Demetrius assem­bly, which wanted a right and a lawfull calling. But let vs see with what esteeme and authoritie this Councel is receiued in the Romane Church. Cardinall Bellar­mine tels vs:Si tollamus authoritatē praesentis Ecclesiae & praesentis Concilii, in dubiū reuo­cari possunt omniū alio­rum Conci­liorum de­creta, et to­tu fides Christiana. Bell. de ef­fect. Sacrā lib. 2. c 25. If we take away the authoritie and credit of the present Church and Councell of Trent, the Decrees of other Councels, and the whole Chri­stian Faith may bee called in [Page 422] question. This Iesuite, who first assured vs, That the Church might continue safe without Councels, (if occa­sion required) at least two thousand yeres: now, with­out any regard to the sacred Gospel of Christ, professeth, That if the Roman Church and Trent Councell were remoued, the Faith of all Christians would be indan­gered: and Campian his fel­low Iesuite, as man raui­shed with the fame of that Synod, proclaimes to after ages: The elder that Councell waxeth, the more it will flou­rish: and as a true Romish Proselyte cries out, to the astonishment of poore Pro­testants: O good Lord, with what diuersitie of people out of [Page 423] all Countreys, with what choyce of Bishops throughout all Chri­stendome, with what excellen­cies of Kings and Common­weales, with what profound Di­uines, with what deuotion, with what lamentations, with what abstinence and fasting, with what flowers of Vniuersities, with what knowledge of strange tongues, with what sharpe wits, with what studie, with what endlesse reading, with what store of vertues and exercises was that sacred place replenished? This Councell is like the great Diana of the Ephesians, that carries the vniuersall applause, let vs looke here­fore into the lawfulnesse and authoritie of this Councell: for if it be of men, Acts 5.39. it will come to nought, but if it bee of God, [Page 424] we cannot ouerthrow it, lest hap­pily we be found euen to fight a­gainst God himselfe.

First then, as this Councel wanted a right calling of the Emperor, so likewise it wan­ted a requisite condition to make it Generall: for that Councell is truly Generall, wherunto al christian States are summoned & assembled in his name; and shall this be held the great Councell of the Christian world, the chiefe supporter of all other Councels, and the whole Christian faith, which was confined to a small number, and some fewe Nations? Looke vpon the three Pa­triarks of Constantinople, An­tioch, and Alexandria, were they all present? Look vp­on [Page 425] the Grecians, Armenians, Medes, Persians, Egyptians, Moores, Aethiopians, were they summoned to this Councel? do not these peo­ple beleeue in Christ? haue they not Bishops? did their Ambassadours come from all these Nations to the Councell? Nay more, were the Legats of the kingdome of England, of Denmarke, of the King of Swetia, of Scotland, and the Duke­dome of Prussia there pre­sent? Looke vpon the as­semblie of their Bishops, and it will appeare by their Historie of Trent, Historie of Trent lib 2 p. 140. Engl that this Generall and great Coun­cell consisted but of fortie three Bishops, and some of those also were but Titular, [Page 426] as namely, Richard Pates, Bi­shop of Worcester, and blind Sr Robert, Bishop of Armach; these had the bare titles of Bishops, & were no Bishops at all; and two of those Bi­shops (saith Illiricus) were taken in adultery,Illyr. in Pro­test. contr. Conc. Trid. the one strucken with a dart, the o­ther taken in a trap by the husband, and hanged by the necke out of a window, to bee seene by all that passed by in the street.

Binius the publisher of the Councels, giues vs to vn­derstand, that the whole number of Patriarks, Arch­bishops, and Bishops vnder Pope Paul the Third, who gathered the Councell, by the greatest account, came but to 62; from which if [Page 427] we take the Titular Bishops, and those who through in­firmitie could not meet at one & the same time, there could not be present aboue 43, both as Illiricus, and as the Historie of Trent doe wit­nesse: and must we say, or can we think, that the whole Christian Faith, and decrees of all Councels must de­pend vpon the number of 62, if they were all allow­ed, and agreed together? And that which is most re­markable, in the fourth Ses­sion vnder the same Pope, the poynts of greatest mo­ment were discussed and de­creed by the number of fif­tie three Bishops: then I say, the prime Articles tou­ching the Canonical books [Page 428] of Scripture, touching Tra­ditions (then equalled to the Scriptures,) touching the authentical Edition of scrip­tures, touching the Iudge of all controuersies in poynts of Faith, were handled and resolued for Articles of Faith by those few Bishops, whereas sometimes it is ca­ried by a single voyce or two, and so the number of the whole, at most, is redu­ced to thirtie.

It is true I must confesse, that there were many other learned Diuines present, but it seemes they were chiefly gathered for the instruction of those Bishops; and (saith Stella) If you will make an­swere, Quod si re­sponder is quod hi Epi­scopi secum ducant Theologos qui eos illu­minent, vt contigit in sacro Tri­dentino Cō ­cilio, in hâc re quidem non possum me a risu temperare. Stell in Lu­cam. 6. p. 184. the Bishops bring with them learned Diuines which [Page 429] may instruct them what to say, what to answere, as it was vsed in the Councell of Trent; yet in this I cannot forbeare laughter. Neither was the accesse vn­to the Councell safe for all those that were inuited; nei­ther was it free for all men to dispute and argue the poynts of controuersie free­ly. Pope Iulius the third, af­ter the death of his prede­cessour Pope Paul, made a decree, That none of the Princes and free Cities of Germanie should haue audi­ence, except they would first vow their obedience to the Councell; and for that end and purpose, hee publi­shed his Breue. Erit Conci­lium, vt qui temere lo­cuti sunt dicta recan­taturi ve [...]i aut, aut eo­rū inaudita causa in ex­ecutione ita ordinatarū Constitutio­nū haeretici declarentur Breue Iuli [...] 3. citat. à Caluino. There shall be a Councell, that they which haue spoken rashly, either may [Page 430] recant their sayings, or else without further hearing or re­ceiuing of the matter, may bee denounced and condemned for heretikes, according to the Con­stitutions already made. Here was plaine dealing and short warning for euery man, ei­ther to resolue to subscribe to the Trent Doctrine, or else to be proscribed for an heretique. The Bishops of Apulia did intimate no lesse in the name of all the Bi­shops,Papalū Ro­manū adiu­tor ero ad defendendū cōtra omnes homines, sic me Deꝰ ad­iuuet, et sā ­cta Euāge­lia. Ca. E N Extra delu­re iurand. That they were nothing else but the Popes creatures, and his bondslaues: for there was an oath proposed seuerally to all, to bee taken in this maner: I will defend the Pa­pacie against all men: So helpe mee God, and his holy Gospell. And as there was an oath [Page 431] proposed in behalfe of the Papall doctrine, so likewise there was speciall care ta­ken, and caution giuen,Ne quum a [...]atui quo [...]llius Maiestati praeiu­d [...]ium vllū fieret, si quis in hoc pec­cat Concilio pellatur. Valer. in vi­ta Marcel 2 Canus loc. Theol. li 12 c. 12. § Ex­tat. that whosoeuer should speake against the Maiestie of the Pope, should be banished the Councell. We haue examples of both in this kinde: Cornelius Bishop of Bitonto professed openly in the Councell, that Christ in his last Supper did not offer vp his (reall) body and blood: but the Trent Fathers, (be­cause it was contrary to the Roman Faith) condemned and exploded him. Paulus Vergerius was but suspected for a Lutheran, Sleid. com­ment. li. 21. yet thereupon the Pope comanded him to de­part the Councell. Guilielmus Venetus, a Dominican would prooue the Councell of Con­stance [Page 432] was aboue the Pope, Valer. in vita Mar­cel. 2. be­cause the Councell did depose him: but hee was thought too lauish of his tongue, and therefore was banished the Councell. The Bishop of Chi­oza, professed in the Coun­cell,Craken. p. 158. that hee disliked the De­cree, which made Traditions equall with the Scriptures: but he was expelled the Councell. And as touching the Popes Holinesse, when a zealous and good Bishop had decla­red,Molin. Cō ­sil. de Trid. Conc. nu. 22 that God in the Scriptures was termed Holy; and there­fore it was honour sufficient for the Pope to bee called Holy, and not (most Holy,) the Bishop was sent from Trent to Rome, & there the Pope grieuously handled him for this capitall offence. Nei­ther [Page 433] doe I denie that there was safe conduct promised as well to the Lutherans, as to those which were vowed creatures to the Pope and his doctrine: but (saith Fa­britius) the learned Princes of Germany were kept so farre from the Castle of Disputation, that they could not bee suffered to approach to the entrie of it. Fateor extensionē &c. I grant (saith he) there was libertie extended to other Nations, but withall it is added, that the same forme of liberty should appertaine to none others, but only to them that would repent, and returne to the bosome of the Church. If we look vpon the Tenour of the conduct, we shal find it was very doubt­full, (and in trueth it might [Page 434] well bee thought strange, that a free and Generall Councell of all sorts of Christians, which should meet for Gods glory, and Christian peace, should come in feare and danger of their owne safetie:) for say they,History of Trent. lib. 4 p. 341. & 343. Engl. The holy Synod (as much as it can) grants publike faith, and full securitie, that is, safe conduct; but (saith the Histo­rie) the Protestants thought the forme of the safe conduct very captious, because as well in the Decree, as in the Tenor, there was this clause of reseruation, (As much as it can) when as no man demandeth of an other, that which is not in his power to grant. To let passe the like Conduct giuen to Hie­rome of Prague, and Iohn Husse [Page 435] at the Councel of Constance, can they prooue that there was free libertie of speech granted, as it is in all pub­like Consultations? Was there open conference and dispute allowed about the controuersies of Religion? was the Scripture appoin­ted to be Iudge, or the plea being against the Pope, ought the Pope to be plain­tife and Iudge in his owne cause? I confesse, the Ele­ctors and Princes of Germa­nie being assembled at New­burg, in the Popes name, and by the Popes Legats were summoned to the Councel; but withall they returned this answere: Mirari se &c. Epist. Rerū gest. sub Ferd. ann. 1561. apud Scard. They wondred vpon what groūd or reason, the Pope should bee so [Page 436] bold, how he durst proclaime a Councell to them, and call them to Trent: And there they giue this reason for it; Be­cause it was neither lawfull, Craken. p. 156. nor agreeable to Diuine or Human equitie, that the Pope should supply the place of a Iudge, when as both the dissention and ruine of the Church proceeded from himselfe. Thus if wee consider this Councels cal­ling, it was by vsurpation, not of ancient right. If we respect the nature of it as it was, Generall; many Kings and Princes were so farre from allowing it, that they made protestation again [...] it: if we obserue the number of Bishops in their a [...] semblie, when the greate [...] points of controuersie we [...] [Page 437] handled and resolued, there were but fiftie three. If we looke vpon the free accesse, it was doubtfull, and limi­ted to certaine conditions. And lastly, if wee respect a free conference,Historie of Trent. lib. 2 p. 126. The Pope made knowne by his Legats, that the Iudges were tyed to him by oath; whereas the plea being against the Pope and his doctrine, he himselfe ought not to bee Iudge. I conceiue it was but a harsh proceeding, that how many, or how great soeuer the differences were concerning Religion, yet there could bee no di­spute, nor yet admittance to the Councell, but by an in­forced protestation, & vow­ed obedience to the Pope and his doctrine; insomuch, [Page 438] their owne Thuanus giues vs to vnderstand, that the fault was not in the Protestants; for notwithstanding they conceiued their Conduct was not safe, yet they came to the Councell, and desi­red the Popes Legat to haue libertie to dispute; and be­ing made knowne, that the Protestants were ready to make good their confessi­ons, which at that time they exhibited to the Councell; The Trent Fathers were great­ly offended, Thua. hist. Tom 1. li. 9. ann. 1552. neither could the Protestants haue answer to their confessions, and therefore they desired leaue to be gone, which being easily granted them, they commended their cause to the Emperours Oratour, and so de­parted from the Councell.

[Page 439]I will giue you a short and generall view of the actions in this Councell. Andraeas Dudithius an Ambassadour, sent to this Councell, from the State and Cleargie of Hungarie, a man highly fa­uoured by Ferdinand, and Maximilian the second, and a knowne Actor in this as­sembly, giues the substance of their proceedings in few words very remarkable, and worthy of all mens reading.

What good (saith he) could be done in that Councell, Andr. Du­dith. in E­pist. ad Ma­ximil. 2. Cae­sarē de Ca­lice & Sa­cerdotum Coniugio. which onely numbred, but neuer consi­dered the weightinesse of any opinion, if either the cause or reason might haue made the encounter; or if a few assistants had but sided with vs, the day had been ours, albeit the enemy [Page 440] was very strong: but when on­ly number fought the field, in which wee fell short of them, though our cause was neuer so good, we could not come off with victorie: to euery one of vs the Pope was able to oppose one hundred of his owne; and if a hundred seemed but a few, hèe could suddenly raise a thousand, and send them to helpe their fellow Labourers: so that you might daily see seruile & poore Bishops, for the most part young men, and almost beardlesse, wa­sted with lusts, hasten to Trent, hyred and procured by the Pope to speake as hee would haue them, vnlearned men they were and simple, but for their impu­dencie and audacitie of much vse: assoone as these had accesse to the Popes flatterers, then did [Page 441] iniquitie reioyce to haue the vp­per hand, neither might any thing bee decreed, but what made for them, who made it their onely Religion, to main­taine their Popes power and ry­ot. One graue and learned man there was, Bishop of Granado. which could not away with such basenesse; he as no sound Catholike, what with feare and threatnings, and what with intreatie, was brought by the Councel to allow that which in heart hee disavowed. In briefe, it came to that issue, by the dishonestie of them that were made and ordained for that purpose, that the Councell seemed to consist, not of Bishops, but of shadowes, not of men, but of Images, which like the sta­tues of Daedalus, had no moti­on from themselues, but were [Page 442] carried vpon other mens shoul­ders. The Bishops for the most part were hyrelings, who like a paire of countrey bag-pipes, vnlesse they were still blowne, could make no musicke. The holy Ghost had not to doe with that Councell, wherein was no­thing but worldly wisedome, and that was wholly spent in propagating the Popes immode­rate and shamefull Lordlinesse, from whom, as from an other Delphos, they did wait for Ora­cles; and from him in a Carri­ers clokebag was the holy Ghost sent, of which they so much brag to sit at the sterne of their Councells: and, quod admo­dum ridiculum est, which is most ridiculous, when there fell good store of raine, the holy Ghost could not come vnto thē [Page 443] before the floods were abated: so it fell out, that the spirit was not carried vpon the waters (as wee reade in Genesis) but be­sides them. O strange and mon­strous madnesse, the Bishop like the people: No act or Decree of theirs could be established, vn­les the Pope were made the first Author of that Decree.

How truely this learned Bishop hath deciphered the state and condition of that Councell, I leaue to euery mans iudgement, sure I am, whilest many there carried the businesse with craft and ambition, in those things which appertaine to Gods glory, there was more attri­buted to the Councell of man, then to the grace of God. Adde to these testi­monies, [Page 444] the protestation of Francis the French King, who was so farre from approuing the Decrees of the Councell,Rex pubicè in co conuē ­tu protesta­tus se illud ne (que) pro [...]e­cumenico, ne (que) pro le­gitimo ha­bere, sed pro priuato cō ­uentu &c. Innoc Gent Trid. Sess. 12. & Hist. of Trent. lib. 4. p 319. Engl. that hee openly proclaimed, that for his part he neither held it for a Generall, nor yet for a lawfull Councell, but for a priuate Conuenticle, assembled for the ends of some priuate men; and that neither hee nor his subiects were bound to obey it; and that hee would haue this his Protestation in­rolled amongst the Decrees of that Councell. Adde to this the Protestation of all the Reformed Churches, and diuers Christian Nations, who at this day vtterly dis­avow the Trent doctrine. Adde to this the protesta­tion of the Ambassador to [Page 445] Charles the fifth, Illyr. in Protest. cont. Conc. Trident. who made his declaration in like man­ner: I Iames Hurtado Men­doza, in the name of the most mighty prince my lord Charles the Romane Emperour, by his especiall commission, and in the name of the Empire, & all other his Realmes and Dominions, doe protest, that the Legats and Bi­shops which are at Bonenia, for the most part bound to your Ho­linesse, & wholly hanging vpon your beck, haue no authoritie to make Lawes, in cause of Refor­mation of Religion and maners.

I forbeare to speake more largely of the politike pro­ceedings, and the doctrine of Faith created, and de­clared in this Councell;The Histo­ry of Trent published An. 1629. the former is accurately hand­led by the Historie of Trent, [Page 446] and the later is fully confu­ted by our learned Chemni­tius; Chemnitij examen. Conc. Trid. and as touching Coū ­cels in generall, let it suffice wee haue the testimonie of Cardinal Cusanus; Multu Con­cilia ritè conuocatu errasse le­gimus Cu­san. Con­cord. Cath. lib. 2 c. 3. In fidei de­finitionibus errasse etiā vniuersalia sanctoū Pa­trum Conci­lia compe­rimus. Pig. Hier. Eccle. lib. 6. c. 13. Many ple­narie Councells rightly called, haue erred, as we know by expe­rience. Let it suffice their own Albertus Pigghius giues his assent with vs, that In matters of Faith, Generall Councels haue erred, as namely the Councell of Ariminum, the second Councell of Ephesus, both were generall, and both doe wit­nesse, that Generall Councells lawfully called, may erre. Let it suffice, Panormitan, their chiefest Canonist and Pro­ctor for Pope Eugenius, af­firmeth plainly: A Councell may erre, as otherwise a Coun­cell [Page 447] hath erred, Panorm de Elect & E­lecti pote­state §. sig­nificasti. about marriage to be contracted betwixt the ra­uisher, and the rauished, and the saying of Hierom, as being of the sounder opinion, was af­terwards preferred before the Decree of the Councell. And to preuent that common obiection of the Romanists, that the Church would faile in faith, if Councels should erre hee giues this full solution to the question. Non obstat: Idem Ibid. It hindreth vs little, if it bee said, a Councell cannot erre, be­cause Christ prayed for his Church, that it should not faile. For though a Generall Councell represent the whole vniuersall Church; yet to speake trueth, the vniuersall is not there pre­cisely, but by representation, because the vniuersall Church [Page 448] consisteth of all the faithfull, and this is the Church which cannot erre; whereby it is not impossi­ble, but the true faith of Christ may continue in onely one per­son. Therefore the Church is not said to faile, nor to erre, if the true faith remaine in any one. And that no man might presume to relie in matters of faith, either vpon Fathers or Councels; St. Austen de­liuers it for a safe and sure rule;Aug lib. 2. de Baptist. contr. Do­nat c. 3. Whatsoeuer is found writ­ten in Scriptures, may neither be doubted nor disputed, whether it be true or right: but the wri­tings of Bishops may not onely bee disputed, but corrected by Bishops that are more learned then themselues, or by Councels, and Nationall Councels by Ple­nary or Generall, and euen Ge­nerall [Page 449] Councels may bee amen­ded by the later.

My conclusion therefore shall be this, Since the true Acts and Canons of Coun­cels, which make against the Supremacie, against Inuoca­tion of Saint, against Ima­ges, and the like, are adiud­ged spurious and counter­fet. On the contrary, since diuers Canons and Decrees are deuised for aduantage of their cause, and namely, to prooue their Reall Pre­sence, their Sacrament of Confirmation, their Sacra­ment of Extreame Vnction, the Popes Supremacie, and the like, which authorities are meerely forged and counterfet: since the Bookes of Councells being negligently [Page 450] kept, doe abound with many errours, by the testimonies of our learned aduersaries, I say, to seeke for the knowledge of infallible Trueth, or to search for the soundnesse of true sa­uing faith in Generall, or Prouinciall Councells, is but Via Dubia, a doubtfull and vncertaine way; it is Via Deuia, a wandring and By-way.

It resteth for our Aduer­saries last and best refuge, to flye to the Sanctuarie of their Church: for in trueth, whatsoeuer pretence is made of Scriptures, of Fathers, of Councells, yet if there bee sent out a Melius inquirendum, for the [Page 451] Authour of their newe Creed, and Trent doctrine, they must returne a Non est inuentus, and seeke him onely in the Church.

SECT. XVII. In the Romane Church, which our Aduersaries so highly extoll aboue the Scriptures, there is neither safetie, nor certaintie, whether they vn­derstand the Essentiall or Re­presentatiue, or the Vertuall, or the Consistoriall Church.

CAmpian the Iesuite, who formerly made his claime to all Fa­thers and Councels, now in the name of the Church, in­sults against the Protestants in this manner:Audito no­mine Eccle­siae hostis ex­palluit. Campian. Rat 3. So soone as the Aduersarie heard the Church named, he waxed wan and pale. Indeed I confesse, [Page 453] it would terrifie a religious and sober minded man, to heare such daily blasphe­mies vttered against the Maiestie of Gods word, and to sound out nothing but the honour and authoritie of the Church: who can but wax wan and pale out of pitty & charity, to heare the Church named, and see that she hath kept the name only, and lost her wonted nature? who can but waxe wan and pale, to see her spoiled and bereft of her Iewels & trea­surie of the sacred Scrip­tures, and retaine onely the caskets and boxes, (the bare name of a Church) where those Iewels lay? Looke vpon the best learned of the Roman Church, and tell me [Page 454] if they will not astonish a true beleeuing Christian, and make him change his countenance, to heare such odious comparisons, be­twixt the Scriptures and the Church:In altiori genere (viz) in genere causae effici­entis atque adeò aliquâ ex parte formalis. Stapl Re­lect contro. 4 q. 4. ar. 3. & 9. 3. ar. 1. The Church (saith Stapleton) is an infallible foun­dation of faith in a higher kind then the Scripture: for the Scripture is but a founda­tion in testimonie and matter to be beleeued; but the Church is the efficient cause of Faith, and in some sort the very for­mall: & In Relect. princ fid. dog. cont. 4. q. 5. nay more, if both of them bee properly considered, and compared together, the Church is a more noble subiect then the Scripture: Eam Eccle­sia authori­tatē esse — quia et scripturas quo (que) ipsas laxādi et consignā ­difacultatē &c Idem Princip. Anal. Pio sensupie (que) dici potest, scrip­turas si de stituantur ecclesiae au­thoritate non plus va­lere quā Ac­sopi fabulas Hos. li. 3. de autho sacr. Scripturae. yea, the Church hath such authoritie, that shee may set at libertie, or seale vp the Scriptures them­selues: [Page 455] yea, saith Hosius, a man may speake it in a good, a godly sense, the Scriptures are of no more account, with­out the authority of the Church, then Aesops fables.

Neither let this seeme strange, that the Romanists insist principally vpon the authoritie of the Church: for he that shall looke back, and obserue how the sacred Scriptures are condemned of Obscuritie and Insuffici­encie; he that will consider how the holy Fathers are censured, and reiected by them, as counterfet or er­ronious; he that shall note the Decrees and Canon of Councells condemned as spurious, or superfluous; these things I say conside­red, [Page 456] it is no maruell our ad­uersaries flie to the Ro­man Church,Dicitis prae­cepto Christi obediendum esse primo lo [...]o, deinde ecclesiae et si aliter prae­ceperit Ec­clesia quam Christus, nō Ecclesia sed Christo obe­die odū esse, certè in hoc est omnium praesumpti­onū initiū quādo iudi­cant parti­culares suū sensum indiuinis prae­ceptis cōfor­m [...]arē quā vniuersa Ecclesiae. Nich. Cusa. ad Proem. Epist 2. and for this speciall cause aduance the name of the Church aboue all. Cardinall Cusanus, by way of obiection, puts the question to the Bohemians, whether they were better obey the Word of God or the Church: You say, wee must first obey Christs Com­mandements, and afterwards the Church; and if the Church command vs to doe otherwise then Christ commandeth, wee must obey Christ, and not the Church. It is true, that the Protestants rightly propose that question, (which with­out all question) cannot o­therwise bee resolued: but heare what answere hee [Page 457] makes them: Verily, herein standeth the beginning of all presumption, when particular men thinke their owne iudge­ment to bee more agreeable to Gods commandements, Dicetū for­sitan quo­modò mutu­buntur pra­cepta Christi authoritate Ecclesia, vt tūc sint ob­ligatoria quando Ec­clesia placu erit. Dico nulla esse Christi pra­cepta nisi quae per Ec­clesiam protalibus ac­cepta sint, Mutato iu­dicio Eccle­siae, mutatū est Dei Iu­diciū. Idem Epist. 3. then the iudgement of the vniuersall Church: nay, hee puts the question further; Perhaps you will say, How shall Christes commandements be changed by the authoritie of the Church, that they shall binde vs, when the Church shall thinke it good? I tell thee (saith hee) there is nothing to bee taken for Christs commandements, vn­lesse it bee to bee so allowed of the Church: when the Church hath once changed her iudge­ment, Gods iudgement is likewise changed. Cardinall Ho­sius giues his consent with [Page 458] Cardinall Cusanus, and mor [...] plainly resolues the questi­on in few words:Quod Ec­clesia docet expressum Deiverbum est, et quod contra sen­sum et con­sensum Ec­clesia doce­tur expres­sum Diabo­li verbum est. Hos. de expresso verbo Dei. Whatsoe­uer the Church teacheth, is the expresse word of God; and whatsoeuer is taught against the sens [...] and meaning of the Church, [...] the expresse word of the Deuill. To say nothing of the do­ctrine of Deuils, (viz.) the forbidding of Meats, and Mar­riage, (foretold by the Apo­stle, and now fulfilled in the Church of Rome,) I will giue you an instance or two in the word of God, and the doctrine of the Romane Church, that you may the better discerne, whether the Church changing her iudg­ment, there be any variablenesse, or shadow of turning with Christ, and whether the doctrine [Page 459] of the Roman church bee not expressely against the Word of God.Etsi Aposto­lus lingua intellectâ preces velit celebrari, tamen san­ctā Ecclesiā iustissimis de causis cō tra statuisse Bened. Mont. in 1. Cor. 14.

Touching Prayer in an vnknowne tongue, it is the confession of Benedict, Mon­tanus, a Parisian Doctor: Et­si Apostolus &c. Although the Apostle thought good to haue Prayer in a knowne tongue, yet the Church, vpon good causes, hath decreed the contrarie. Touching Adoration of I­mages,Licet in le­ge veteri prohibita fuissent lege diuinâ ima­gines visibi­les, nedum ipsius Dei nihilo mi­nùs Eccle­sia. Ioh. Rag. orat▪ in Conc. Basil. de Cōmun sub vtra (que) specie. it is the confession of Iohannes Ragusius, in his Oration at the Councell of Basil: Licet in Lege, &c. Al­though in the old time the vi­sible Images of God, yea and of his Saints were forbidden by the Law of God, and no libertie was since granted either in the Old or New Testament, to make [Page 460] any such, yet (the Church) taught by the holy Spirit, hath not onely permitted, but decreed and ordained it. Touching the Communion in both kinds, it is the confession o [...] the Generall Councell of Constance, Conc. Con­stant. Sess. 13. Conc. Trid. Sess. 5. Can. 2. and the Councell of Trent, Licet Christus &c Although Christ did institu [...] the Sacrament in both kinds yet saith the Trent Councel he that shall say (the Catholik [...] Church) hath not altered it fo [...] good causes, or that they err [...] in so doing, let him bee accursed. These are speciall poin [...] with them, and the denya [...] of any of these, make a ma [...] heretike in the Church [...] Rome; yet by their ow [...] confession are decreed wi [...] Non obstante. Notwithsta [...] ding [Page 461] Christ and his Apostles taught the contrary. Obserue then the difference betwixt the Gospell of Christ, and the doctrine of the Ro­man Church; the Spirit of God denounced a curse, both against men and An­gels, that should teach any other doctrine, then that they receiued from the Scriptures; the Church of Rome pronounceth Anathe­ma against all those that do not teach, and beleeue the doctrine of their Church, although it be different from the Scriptures.

I confesse the name of the Church is honourable, and her credit singular; but that which stickes with mee, and as I conceiue is worthy of [Page 462] all mens obseruation; the name of the Church, which is so much magnified, and adored of all Romanists, and Romish Proselytes, I say, that Romane Church, is neither vnderstood by the ignorant what it is, nei­ther is it resolued by the learned amongst them, in certaine, what is properly meant & vnderstood by it.

First then, we must know, as the Church hath many parts to act;Ecclesia Essentialis. Representa­tiua. Virtualis. Cōsistorialis Bell. de Ec­cles. li. 3. c. 2. so likewise the Romanists make her of foure seuerall sorts: The Essentiall Church, and this (saith Bel­larmine) is a company of men professing the same Christian Faith and Sacraments, and ac­knowledging the Bishop of Rome to bee the chiefe Pastor and Vi­car [Page 463] of Christ vpon the earth. The Representatiue Church; and this is an Assembly of Bi­shops in a generall Councell, re­presenting the whole bodie of the Church. The Vertuall Church; and this is the Bi­shop of Rome, who is said to bee the chiefe Pastor of the whole Church, and hath in himselfe eminently and vertually both truth and infallibilitie of iudg­ment, and vpon whom depen­deth all that certaintie of truth which is found in the whole Church. The Confistoriall Church; and this consisteth of the Pope and Cardinals, and is termed by the S [...]rbo­nists, The Court of Rome. Curia Ro­mana. Tou­ching these seuerall accep­tions of the Church, there are seuerall and different o­pinions. [Page 464] The Glosse vpon Gratian put the first questi­on,Quaero de quâ Ecclesiâ intelligas, quoà hic di­citur quod non possit errare. Res. Ipsa congrae­gatio fideliū hîc dicitur Ecclesia. Causa 24. q. 1. c. A recta. Conciliū le­gitimū om­niū consen­su maximè propriè dici possit Eccle­sia. Bell de Conc. et Ec­cles. l. 1. c. 18 Per Ecclesiā intelligimꝰ Pontif. Ro­manum qui pro tē ­pore Eccle­sia nauiculā moderatur, et Ecclesiā Papā inter­pretantur non abnuo. Desp. ca. 10 lib. 3. de verbo Dei. Greg. de Val. disp. Theol. Tō. 1. disp. 1. q. &c. Apud moder nos maximè importat hoc nomen Ec­clesia quem­admodum hoc Eccle­sia Rom. vrbis dudū obtinutt, cu­ius ministri et Presidentes sunt Pa­pa et Cardi­nales ipsius, qui iam ex vsu quodam obtinuerunt dici Eccle­sia. Defens. pacis part. 2. cap. 2. Cerem. li. 1 Sect 8 c. 6. and thus resolues it: I would know what Church you vnderstand when you say, It cannot erre. I answere, It is the congregation of the faithfull, that is heere meant by the Church. To the second, Bellarmine replies: A lawfull Councell, by the most generall consent is most properly termed the Church. To the third, Gretzerus the Iesuite makes this confession I deny not, but by the Church wee vnder­stand the Bishop of Rome for the time being, who guides the Ship of the militant Church: and Gregory de Valentia, by the Church wee meane her Head, that is to say, the Romane Bi­shop in whom resideth the full [Page 465] authoritie of the Church. To the fourth, Marsilius Pata­uinus giues his free assent: that the name of the Church is of great consequence amongst the moderne Writers, whose Ministers and Presidents are the Pope and Cardinalls, which now by vse and custome haue at last obtained to bee called the Church: and of this Church the Pope himselfe hath made this declaration, Yee shall bee the Senatours of my citie, and like vnto Kings, the very hookes and stayes of the world, vpon whom the very doore of the Church Militant must bee turned and ruled. Now amidst these different opinions, it must needes seem questionable, to which of these Churches a poore [Page 466] ignorant soule (who desires satisfaction in matters of Religion) should addresse himselfe: if hee require iudgement of the Essentiall Church, there is little com­fort, and lesse assurance to be had from them, for they consist most of the ignorant and common people, and haue chiefest need of instru­ction themselues: besides, it is impossible to know the iudgment of all Christians, (who make the vniuersall Church) in all or any parti­cular poynts of Religion. If he appeale to Councells, their right calling is vncer­taine, their Decrees and Ca­nons are doubtfull, for ma­ny of them are adiudged by themselues erronious, [Page 467] many spurious and counter­fet: If hee would consult with the Pope and Cardi­nals in their Consistorie, it is a iourney too costly and tedious; besides, it will ap­peare they are subiect vnto errour.

It resteth then that we ex­amine the infallibilitie of particular Churches, and in particular that wee enquire whether the Roman church be that Church which wee are commanded to heare and obey, by the authoritie of the Scriptures.

SECT. XVIII. The most common Plea of the Romanists drawne from the Infallibilitie, Authoritie, and Title of the Catholique Church, is prooued to be false, vaine and friuolous.

TO giue the Church of Rome her due, let vs take a briefe suruay of her first founda­tion, and let vs fee what pri­uiledge did ancienly belong vnto her, and what autho­ritie shee claimeth at this day. First, the Apostle St. Paul in his Epistles to the Romans, congratulates with them, and sendeth them this [Page 469] greeting:Rom. 1.7. To all that bee in Rome, beloued of God, called to be Saints: hee testifieth fur­ther with prayer & thanks­giuing,Vers 8. that their Faith was spoken of throughout the whole world: nay more, he makes an earnest request to God, that he might see the mem­bers of that Church, and impart Spirituall gifts vnto them, to the ende they might be established. These testi­monies of the Apostle were speciall Caracters of an e­minent & glorious Church (although in truth; there is not so much as this name of a Church giuen to the Ro­mans in all the Scriptures,The church at Babylon elected. 2. Pet. 5.13. (vnlesse they will allow the Church at Babylon to bee the Church of Rome:) and [Page 470] heere was a probable assu­rance of continued stability and perseuerance in the Faith in all Ages: but be­hold the same Apostle, which did so much glory in behalfe of their Catho­lique Faith, which gaue God thankes for them; which, without doubt, pray­ed for the continuance of that Faith:Verse 9. (For God is my witnesse (saith he) without cea­sing I make mention of you al­wayes in my Prayers.) As if hee had foreseene by the spirit of Prophesie, they would glory in their owne worth and merits: shortly after, in his eleuenth Chapter of the same Epistle, giues them this speciall Caueat: Be not high minded, but feare: [Page 471] and withall giues a speciall reason of that Caueat. For if God spared not the naturall branches, take heede also lest hee spare not thee, behold there­fore the bountifulnesse and se­ueritie of God; towards them that haue fallen, seueritie; but towards thee goodnesse, if thou continune in his goodnesse; o­therwise also thou shalt bee cut off. This Doctrine of the Apostle doth trench so farre into the present estate of the Church of Rome, that the Rhemists forbeare their Annotations vpon this place, for the truth is these last words. Thou also shalt bee cut off, Doe plainely in­timate, that the Church of Rome from the time of the Apostles had a possibilitie [Page 472] of falling, and consequent­ly was but a particular Church: for so it befell the Church of Ierusalem, and much more (saith the Apostle) may it befall the Church of Rome.

Let vs compare the testi­monies and promises in be­half of the Roman Church, with other particular and famous Churches in the time of the Apostles, and see whether those promi­ses did more largely ex­tend to the faith of the Ro­man Church, then to other Churches: St. Paul (wri­ting to the Thessalonians, termes them by the name of the Church) he giues this large testimonie in their be­halfe:Thess. 1.8. From you sounded out [Page 473] the word of the Lord, not onely in Macedonia and Achaia, but your faith which is toward God is gone forth into all places, that wee haue no need to speake any thing: yea more, hee giues them a kinde of assurance for the perpetuitie of their faith; The Lord is faithfull, 2. Thess. 3 3 and will establish you, and keepe you from all euill: yet this Church is fallen away, and hath lost her first faith. The Ephesians are termed by the Apostle,1 Tim. 3.15 The Church of the liuing God, the Pillar & ground of truth. And for this Church the Apostle makes this con­fession:Ephes. 3.14 16. I bow my knees vnto the Father of our Lord Iesus Christ, that he would grant you according to the riches of his glory, to bee strengthened with [Page 474] might by his spirit in the inner man: yet we see this Church which was the ground and pillar of truth, and for which the Apostle earnestly pray­ed for, is rased to the ground, and vtterly fallen from the truth. The Corin­thians are tearmed by Saint Paul, 1. Cor. 1.2. The Church of God called to be Saints. And this Church is farther witnessed by the same Apostle, that shee was rich in all things through Christ, in all kinds of speech and knowledge, and that shee was not destitute of any gift: yea, he deliuers confident in be­halfe of that Church, that God would establish them vnto the end, euen the day of the Lord Iesus Christ: yet soone after some of them denied [Page 475] the Resurrection, they fell from the truth, and are now subiect to the Turke. If then the Church of the Thessalo­nians, of the Ephesians, of the Corinthians, (touching the outward face, and visibilitie of the locall Churches) if they are all fallen, notwith­standing such faire testimo­nies and large promises in their behalfe, (which also were accomplished in the Elect) what stabilitie could the Church of Rome pro­mise to her selfe, which had not so much as the name of a Church, but was threat­ned vpon the breach of a condition, that they also should bee cut off? Whether the condition be broken or no, I will not heere dispute: [Page 476] but this I may safely say, If the Iewes being the Lords peculiar people, and the na­turall branches, were bro­ken off, how much more the Church of Rome, being but a wilde Oliue branch, might bee cut off from the faith of Christ? No doubt the Spirit of God foresaw, that the Romanist would glory in the name of the Church, and aduance that name aboue his word; and therefore the word of God gaue not so much as a name of a Church, nor promise of infallibility & perseuerance vnto it, but a speciall caueat to put them in mind not to be high minded. I say therefore to the Romanist, as St. Hie­rom sometimes said to Pam­machius [Page 477] and Oceanus: Quisquis es assertor no­vorum dog­matū quaese te vt parcas Romanis auribꝰ, par­cas fidei quae Apostolico ore laudae tur; cur post quadi ingē ­tos annos docere nos niteris, quod antea nes­ciuimꝰ, cur profers in medium qd Paulus & Petrꝰ edere noluerunt, vs (que) ad hūc l [...]ē si [...]e istâ doct [...]inâ nund Chri­stianus fuit Hieron. ad Pammach. & Oceanū. Thou who art a maintainer of newe doctrine, whatsoeuer thou bee, I pray thee spare the Romane eares, spare the Faith that is commended by the Apostles mouth, why goest thou about now after 400 yeeres, (I may say 1400) to teach vs that Faith which wee before neuer knew? Why bringest thou forth that thing that Peter and Paul neuer vttered? Euermore vn­till this day the Christian world hath beene without this Do­ctrine.

But obserue the cunning of our Aduersaries, they doe as much glory of the Apostles testimonie, (that the Romane Faith was pub­lished through the world) (as if the ancient, and the [Page 478] now Romane faith were all one:) And to prooue an in­fallible Succession in their doctrine, they pretend, that St. Cyprian, a blessed Martyr, did witnesse to the world, that the Romane Church could not erre, and conse­quently the Trent doctrine is the ancient faith of Christ and his Apostles.

St. Cyprian (saith M. Bishop) tells vs, that Perfidiousnesse and falsehood in matters of Faith, can haue no accesse to the Church of Rome: so that by the Apostles confession, they challenge an eminent Visibilitie, and by this an­cient Fathers testimonie, they claime an assured sta­bilitie in matters of Faith. If these things were true, I [Page 479] should craue pardon of Cy­prian, not to beleeue him, because the Apostle teach­eth mee to beleeue the con­trary: but the trueth is, this testimony so often alledged by our aduersaries, makes nothing for their purpose; for if Cyprian say that Infi­delitie cannot come to the Ro­mans, whose faith was praised by the Apostles mouth, then can none of the people of Rome erre, because the faith of them all was praised by the Apostles mouth: but the trueth is, this holy Fa­ther speakes not there of matters of faith, nor of the stabilitie of the Romane Church, (although most Romanists so translate it and apply it) but of the tumul­tuous [Page 480] and disorderly cour­ses of certain lewd persons, who being censured by the Bishops of Africa, fled to the Bishop of Rome for prote­ction of their cause, and therupon vpbraideth them, that they came to Rome with lyes and tales, which could finde no admittance, nor harbour there,Nauigare audent et — à schisma­ticis et pro­fanis literas ferre, nec cogitare eos esse Roma­nos quorum fides Apostolo praedican­te laudata est, adquos persidia non potest habe­re accessum Cypr. lib. 1. Epist 3. when as they might wel vnderstand, that the Romans were men whose Faith was commen­ded by the Apostle, Et ad quos perfidia non potest habere accessum: vnto whom perfidi­ousnesse could haue no accesse; that is, they would giue no eare to their perfidious and calumnious suggestiōs. This therefore, I must needs say, is vnfaithfulnesse and perfi­diousnes [Page 481] in the Church of Rome, wilfully to misapply those things which make nothing for them.

I proceed from the infal­libilitie of the Church to the authoritie of it, wherein you shall likewise obserue, the Romanists doe insist e­specially vpon that knowne confession of St. Austen: Ego vero E­vangelio nō crederē nisi me Catho­licae Ecclesiae cōmoueret authoritas. Aug. contr. Ep. Fund. cap. 5. I should not haue beleeued the Gospell, except the Authoritie of the Church had mooued mee thereunto. But I pray, what doe these words concerne the Roman Church? why should they bee applied ra­ther to the Roman, then to his owne Church in Africa, or our Chuch in England? (for hee speakes not of the Roman Church, or any par­ticular [Page 482] Church, but of the Church indefinitly.) More­ouer, their owne Canus pro­fesseth,Canus loc. Theol. lib. 2. cap. 8. that St. Austen had to doe with a Manichee, who would haue a certaine Go­spell of his owne admitted without further dispute: In this case (saith he) St. Austen puts the question: What if you finde one, which doeth not beleeue the Gospell? what mo­tiue would you vse to such a one to bring him to your beliefe? I for my part (saith hee) should not haue beene brought to im­brace the Gospell, if the Chur­ches authoritie had not swayed with me. [...] re [...] Cy [...] Epi [...] And from hence al­so Bishop Canus drawes this sound conclusion. The faith of the Gospel is not founded vp­on the authority of the Church. [Page 483] This Exposition of their Romanist is agreeable to our belielfe: for wee pro­fesse, that the first outward motiue to bring men to the knowledge of the Scrip­tures, is the authoritie of Gods Church.Hooker Ec­cles. Polit. lib. 3. If I beleeue the Gospell (saith Hooker) yet is Reason of singular good vse, for that it confirmeth me in this my beliefe the more: If I doe beleeue as yet, neuerthelesse to bring mee to the number of be­leeuers, except reason did some­what helpe, and were an instru­ment which God doeth vse to such purposes, what should it boot to dispute with infidels and godlesse persons for their con­version and perswasion in that poynt.

Hee therefore that shall [Page 484] conclude from St. Austens doctrine, (which he profes­sed in the name of an here­tike) let him receiue his an­swer from the same Father, when he makes his confes­sion as a true Catholike:Ex veritatis ore agnosoo Ecclesiam participem veritatis. Aug. in Psal. 57. By the mouth of God which is the trueth, I know the Church of God which is partaker of the trueth. But as it happeneth sometimes, that hee who hath fallen into the hands of an vnskilfull Physician, is loath afterwards to com­mit himself euen to a good one:Aug. lib. 6. Confess. c. 4 So was it in the state of my soule (saith Austen) which could not bee healed by belee­uing, and for feare of beleeuing false things, it refused to be cu­red by true ones. And in the Chapter following, whilest [Page 485] hee was yet a Manichee, hee makes this humble confes­sion: Thou, Lord, Idem Con­fess. l. 6 c. 5. didst per­swade mee thus, I say not that they were blameable who belee­ued thy Bookes, which thou hast grounded by such authoritie throughout almost all the nati­ons of the earth, but that they indeed were blameable who be­leeued them not; and that no [...]are was to bee giuen to any, if peraduenture they should say to mee: How dost thou know that these Bookes were imparted to mankind by the Spirit of that one God, who is true in him­selfe, and most true, when hee speaketh to vs; for that is the very thing it selfe, which is especially to bee beleeued. Thus St. Austen the Catho­lique, interprets Austen the [Page 486] Heretique: After his con­version to the trueth, the blessed Spirit did perswade him, that there was no eare to bee giuen to those men which made such doubts and questions (as are dayly made in the Church of Rome) viz. How doe you know the Scriptures to bee the Word of God? but as the Samari­tans beleeued that Christ was the promised Sauiour vpon the report of a wo­man, yet afterwards when they heard him themselues, they professed they belee­ued him for his owne sake, and not for the womans re­port: So likewise this holy Father, first conferred with flesh and blood, as the most knowne & familiar meanes [Page 487] to introduce a sauing know­ledge; but after hee had re­ceiued the Spirit and word of trueth, he, like the Sama­ritans, beleeued the Gospel, not for the Churches sake, but for Christs own autho­ritie, and his Gospels sake.

The Authoritie of the Church is rightly compa­red to a Key, which ope­neth the dore of entrance into the knowledge of the Scripture: now when a man hath entred & view­ed the house, and by view­ing it, likes it, and vpon liking, resolues vnchange­ably to dwell there; hee doeth not set vp his reso­lution vpon the key that let him in, but vpon the goodnesse and commodi­ousnes [Page 488] which he sees in the house. I omit diuers Ex­positions of the learned Ro­manists, touching this say­ing of Austen: Durand. l. 3 Dist. 24 q. 1 Diedo. de Eccl. Script. & dogm. lib. 4. c. 4. Ge [...]s. de vi­ta spir. Ani­mae. lect. 2. Coroll. 7. Durand, Drie­do, and Gerson tell vs, That those words of Saint Austen had relation to the Primi­tiue Church, which both saw Christs person, and his mi­racles, & heard his doctrine. Aquinas saith,Augustinus de Ecclesia vt causa praeponente, non vt fun­damento fi­dei loquitur A quin. in 2 2. quaest. 2. art 7. that St. Austen spake of the Church as an ouer­ruling cause, but not as a foun­dation of Faith. And for a conclusion of this poynt; The minde of the faithfull beleeuer doth not rest in the iudgement of the Church: for (saith Stapleton) Although the Church by reason of her Ministerie and Mastership re­ceiued of God, Stapl. lib. 3. de author. Scrip. c. 12. doth cause vs to [Page 489] beleeue, yet the reason where­fore wee beleeue, is not the Church, but God speaking with­in vs, and witnessing his trueth vnto vs by his holy Spirit. Thus briefly touching the authoritie of the Church: now I proceed to our ad­uersaries claim touching the Vniuersalitie of it.

Lessius the Iesuite tells vs, The Church of Rome, Sola Eccle­sia Romana ei (que) adhae­rens multi­tudo Eccle­sia Catho­lica, &c. Less. in Consult. Consid. 6. and that Church onely and the multitude adhering to it, is the Catholique Church, the Religion of this Church is Catholique, the faith is Catholique, the doctrine is Catholique, and their followers are tearmed Catholikes. What is properly vnderstood by the Catholike Church, St. Austen deliuers in these words, Non haec, aut illa, It [Page 490] is not this Church, Toto orbe diffusa. Aug. de ru­dibus Ca­tech. c. 20. or that Church, but the Church di­spersed throughout the whole world: Maiores nostri Ca­tholicā no­minarunt vt ex ipso nomine o­stenderent quia per to­tum est. Aug de V­nit. Eccles. cap. 2. and from hence, Our Ancestours named the Church Catholique, that by that name they might demonstrate the V­niuersall. If then the Church of Rome can prooue their Church Vniuersall, there would be an end of all con­trouersies: for we professe our selues to bee members of the vniuersall Church, wee say that Church can neither erre totally, nor fi­nally; and wee willingly grant, that out of that Church there is no saluation. But cer­tainly this last Tenet doeth strongly euince, that the Roman Church is not Vni­uersall, for Saint Stephen, and [Page 491] St. Iames, and others suffered Martyrdome, and were sa­ued in the Church of Hie­rusalem, and in the Church of Antioch, before the Church of Rome was euer heard of; and they were all members of the vniuersall Church. But let the Church of Rome claime what title or prerogatiue she list, shee is in danger to fall vpon a Rocke: for if shee confesse that shee is a particular Church, shee stands subiect vnto errour; if shee assume the title of Vniuersall, she is altogether invisible: for V­niuersale sentitur non videtur: That which is Vniuersall, is vn­derstood, not seene. It is the Article of our Creed: I be­leeue the Catholique Church: [Page 492] and,Hoc enim veracitèr dicitur cre­di quod non potest vide­ri. Greg. Dial. 4. c. 4. that is truely said to bee beleeued which is inuisible, saith Gregorie. And that the world may know the Romanists are Nominals, such as vaunt of the name of Catholikes, as the Donatists did in the Primitiue Church, when they want the nature of the thing it selfe, their owne Waldensis, who well vnderstood how to make a difference betwixt the par­ticular Roman, and the V­niuersal Catholike Church, tels vs:Wald. de doctr. Fidei. lib. 2. art. 2. cap. 19. The Church whose faith neuer faileth, according to the promise made to Peter, is not any particular Church, as the Church of Africa, nor the particular Romane Church, but the Vniuersall Church, not ga­thered together in a Generall [Page 493] Councell, which hath sometimes erred; but it is the Catholique Church dispersed through the whole world, from the Baptisme of Christ vnto our times, which doeth hold and maintaine the true Faith, and faithfull testi­mony of Iesus. Neither was this the particular opinion of one priuate man, but ma­ny Bishops, and learned Do­ctors did professe publikely in the Councell of Ferara: Quacun (que) facultate Romana Eccles. prae­dita sit, vniuersali Ecclesiae infe­rior sit. Concil. Fe­rar. Sess. 10 With whatsoeuer power the Church of Rome is indued, yet it is inferiour to the Vniuersall Church. And if wee require a cloud of witnesses, behold both Princes, and Cardi­nalls, and Bishops in the great Councell of Basil, re­solued, and declared;Ecclesia Ro­mana non est vniuer­sa, sed est de vniuersali­tate corpo­ris mystici Concil. Ba­sil. in Ap­pendice. That the Church of Rome is not Vni­versall, [Page 494] but a part of that vni­versall mystical body of Christ, as appeareth by Gregorie: Therefore for as much as it is a member of the said body, it is not, neither can it be, the Head of the same body, since there is a difference betwixt Head and members.

Thus if wee looke for Infallibilitie, it is not found in the Romane Church: If wee looke for the Authoritie of the Church, it is inferiour to the Scriptures, vnlesse they say, the Scripture is vnder the Church, as some say the Sunne is vnder a cloud, when it is aboue it. If wee looke for Vniuersalitie, the Romane Church is but a member, and no sound [Page 495] member of the Vniuersall. Let vs therefore examine in particular, where, or in whome wee shall finde this Church, which doeth as­sume those great and glorious Titles to her selfe.

SECT. XIX. The Church which our Aduer­saries so much magnifie a­mongst themselues, is finally resolued into the Pope, whom they make both the Husband and the Spouse, the Head and the Body of the Church.

SAint Matthew tels vs, that our Sauiour Christ gaue charge to Saint Peter, as well as to the rest of his Disciples, that if any dissention did happen which they could not well re­concile among themselues, they should tell the Church. If Saint Peter himselfe was commaunded to tell the [Page 497] Church, and the Pope bee St. Peters Successor, it would somewhat trouble a doubt­ful Recusant, how to vnder­stand and beleeue the Pope for the Church: for if Christ had taken Peter for the Church, it is not probable, hee would haue bid him tell the Church; for that had beene all one as to bid the Church, tell the Church: Yes,Postremò dicere Ec­clesiae, id est, sibi ipsi Bel. de Concil. author. lib. 2. cap. 19. (saith Bellarmine) the Pope ought to tell it to the Church, that is, to himselfe. I take not vpon me to answer this learned Cardinall, but I dare avowe, that this Ex­position of Scripture is not according to the Article of his faith, with the vniforme consent of Fathers: How­beit, by this solution of Dic [Page 498] Ecclesiae, wee are informed where, and in whom wee may finde the Romane Church.

Gretzerus the Iesuite puts the question touching the Pope, and returnes his an­swere in this manner:Ais tertio interpretá­tur Eccle­siam Papā non abnuo, quid tum? Gretz. def. c. 10. l. 31. de verbo Dei. Thou saiest they interpret the Church (the Pope;) I graunt it, what then? yet wee may doubt of his sentence: for how can wee bee certaine that he erres not? Yes (saith hee) from these sayings, I will giue thee the keyes, &c. The gates of Hell shall not pre­uaile &c. Whatsoeuer thou bin­dest, shall bee bound, &c. But who shall iudge of the sense of these places? How shall I know those things are spoken of the Pope? From Ecclesiasticall Tradition, from the consent of [Page 499] our Elders, from the Suffrage of all Antiquitie, from the Text it selfe, if there bee brought no peruerse or preiudicate opinion against it: to conclude, whether thou wilt or no (thou shalt be­leeue it) from the Popes owne Sentence and determination. To this Church then ly­eth an appeale from Scrip­tures, from Councels, from the Essentiall Church; and for that cause Cardinall Bel­larmine proclaimes it as the Popes Champion,Bellar. de Concil. au­thor lib. 2. cap. 17. Nos de­fendimus, Wee maintaine that the Pope is simply and absolute­ly aboue the vniuersall Church, and aboue Generall Councells: and as great men sometimes loue to bee soothed vp in their greatnesse, and are led with opinion of their Para­sites, [Page 500] to beleeue that for a trueth, which is but a sug­gestion of falsehood: so it came to passe touching the Popes power in these latter dayes; they did so much at­atribute to his Authoritie, and Infallibilitie deriued from Peter, that Cardinall Zabarella rightly obserued, and ingenuously confessed; They haue made the Popes be­leeue, Persuase­runt Ponti­ficibus quod omnia pos­sunt, & sic qd facerent quicquid li­beret etiam illicitet, & sint plusquā Deus. Za­barella. that they might doe all things whatsoeuer they listed, yea notwithstanding they were things vnlawfull: and thus, (saith he) they haue made him more then God. Bishop Beg­nius in the last Councell of Lateran, speaking to Pope Leo, cryes out in admirati­on of his Holinesse. Ecce venit Leo: Behold, heere com­meth [Page 501] a Lyon of the Tribe of Iuda, the Root of Dauid, Te Leo bea­tissime sal­uatorē ex­pectauimus, apprehende scutum &c Concil. La­ter 5. Sess. 6. in orat. Begn. ad Leon. 10. behold hee hath raised vp a Sauiour, which shall deliuer the people of God from the hand of the de­stroyer. Thou art hee, O most blessed Leo, whom we haue ex­pected as a Sauiour, take vp thy sword and buckler, and arise in our defence. And thus by de­grees, first Vox populi, the common people, by admi­ring his greatnesse, then Bi­shops & Cardinals by their flattering suggestions, haue at last ascribed infallibilitie of Iudgement to his Au­thoritie, (which I am verily perswaded neuer Pope did beleeue in himselfe) and hereby they haue aduanced him aboue Fathers, aboue Coūcels, aboue the Church; [Page 502] and now at last made him the whole Church, in so much that some of his own side are not ashamed to pro­fesse,Beard. Mot. 6. vide in Iewel. p. 49. that the Pope may dispense against the Apostles, yea, against the new Testament vp­on good cause, and also against all the precepts of the Old. Syl­uester Prierias, Master of the Popes palace goeth further, hee giues vs to vnderstand, that the authoritie of the Ro­man Church, Quicū (que) nō innititur doctrinae Ro­manae eccle­siae, ac Ro­mani Pon­tificis, tan­quā Regulae Dei infalli­bili, à quâ etiam sacra Scriptura robur tra­hit et au­thoritatem, hereticꝰ est. Sylu. Prier. contra Lu­ther. and of the Bishop of Rome, is greater (then the authoritie of Gods Word) and therupon he concludes, Whosoeuer leaneth not to the doctrine of the Roman Church, and of the Bishop of Rome, as vnto the infallible Rule of God, of which Doctrine the holy Scripture taketh force and au­thoritie, [Page 503] he is an heretike. And for a further confirmation of this beliefe, Gretzerus the Iesuite makes this conclusi­on:Id solum pro verbo Dei venera­mur ac suscipimus, qd nobis Pon­tifex ex Ca­thedra Pe­tri, &c. Def c. 1. l. 1. de Verbo Dei. p. 16. Wee doe receiue and reue­rence that onely for the Word of God, which the Pope as su­preame Master of the Christi­ans, and Iudge of all contro­versies, doth determine in the Chaire of Peter. Now if it happen that some Prose­lyte of a tender conscience, should make some scruple, whether the Pope ought to be heard and obeyed, when hee is a murderer, a Sorce­rer, and a wilfull subuerter of the truth, (as some Popes haue been) Hosius their Do­ctour, wisheth them not to trouble thēselues with such idle curiosities.Iudas ne sit an Petrus, au Paulus Deus attē ­di non vult, sed solū hoc qd sedet in Cathedrâ Petri—de cuius ore le­gem requi­rere iussus est. Hoc so­lū spectari vult. Hos. in Confess. Petricoui­en. ca. 29. God will ne­uer [Page 504] haue thee consider (saith he) whether the Pope bee a Iu­das, or a Peter, or a Paul; it is sufficient onely that he sitteth in Peters chaire, that hee is an Apostle, that he is Christs Am­bassadour, that he is the Angell of the Lord of Hostes, from whose mouth thou art comman­ded to require the Law. This thing onely Christ would haue thee to consider. Againe, ad­mit a Councel, a whole con­gregation of men should make a doubt whether the Pope may erre, and by rea­son of that scruple, would not readily obey him: Car­dinall Bellarmine by way of preuention,Si autem Papa erra­ret, praecipi­endo vitia vel prohi­bendo virtu­tes, tenere­tur Ecclesia credere vi­tia esse bo­na, et vir­tutes malas nisi vellet contra con­scientiā pec­care Bell de Pont. li. 4. c. 5. giues them this lesson: If the Pope should so farre foorth erre, as to command vices, and forbid vertues, the [Page 505] Church were bound to beleeue that vices are good, and ver­tues are euill, vnlesse shee will sinne against her owne consci­ence. Heere is an implicite faith commanded; let the Popes doctrine bee true or false, if the Romanists will resigne vp their senses and vnderstanding to this Ver­tuall Church, (which is the Pope) they shall haue a Priest & Cardinall for their Tutors; but by their leaue, they may make shipwracke of their faith, by being their Disciples. I proceed from an implicite faith to a blin [...] obedience; and therein I will giue you a remarke­able example from another Schooleman, who aboue all things doeth honour and [Page 506] commend a blinde obedi­ence to the Church (that is, to the Pope.) Gregorie de Va­lentia tells vs of an Italian Merchant of Placentia, who reasoned and resolued with himselfe in this manner: I hold it is better to professe the Romane Religion, Laurent. disceptatio Theolog. pag. 5. then the Lu­theran; First, because I can briefly learne the Roman faith: for if I say what the Pope sayes, and deny what the Pope denies; and if he speake, and I hearken vnto him, this alone is sufficient for mee: but if I should bee a Lutheran, I must learne a Ca­techisme, I must search the Scriptures, which in trueth I cannot intend, when I must look after the Ships of Italy, and my Merchandise beyond the Seas. You haue heard the reason [Page 507] why this Layman did dis­like the Protestants Religi­on, and what was the rule of his Roman faith, now heare what iudgement this lear­ned Schooleman giues con­cerning this Merchant; Deū nihil habiturum: God (saieth he) will haue nothing to lay to the charge of this man at the dreadfull day of Iudgement. To say nothing of this pre­sumption, I pray God that Pagans & Infidels who knew not Christ, arise not vp in Iudgment against them that teach such doctrine: for whereas all men by the A­postles rule, should be ready to giue an account of their Faith, and must bee iudged by the Word of God; this man by not knowing the Scriptures [Page 508] nor the articles of his faith, but onely for intending his Merchandise, with a blinde obedience, and an implicite faith, shal be free both from guilt and punishment: and no doubt, from this general beliefe, of the Popes autho­ritie, and infallibilitie, the saying of Gregorie the 13. is verified:D. 40 Si Papa in Annot. Men doe with such reuerence respest the Apostoli­call See of Rome, that they ra­ther desire to know the ancient Institution of Christian Religi­on from the Popes owne mouth, then from the holy Scriptures; and they onely inquire what is his pleasure, and accordingly they order their life and con­versation.

He therefore that will ap­peale to the Bishop of Rome, [Page 509] to Rome let him goe; but woe to the Recusants of England, & other countreys remote from Rome, which cannot heare the Church, being so farre distant from him: nay, woe to them at Rome, that liue in his Sea; for how can they heare him if hee neuer preacheth? But withall, most miserable is the condition of the hearer, notwithstanding he should preach: for his owne Car­dinall assures vs, that if his Holinesse teach not the whole Church,Bell lib. 4. de Rom. Pont. lib. 4. cap. 14. hee is in as much possibilitie to erre, as In­nocent the eight was when hee permitted the Norwegians to celebrate the Eucharist without wine. Thus from the multi­tude of beleeuers, which [Page 510] is the Essentiall Church, we are sent to the Councell, from the Councell, which is the Representatiue Church, wee are sent to the Pope, which is the Virtuall, and now at length being arriued at the Pope Consistory, his Cardinal giues vs to vnder­stand, that a man may re­turne happily as wise as he went, but withall intimate [...] [...] vs, that there are no [...] oracles, [...]o infallible do­ctrine to bee learned from his mouth, vnlesse hee will first declare by publike de­cree, that hee intends to preach to the Vniuersall Church, Besides, how the Vicar of Christ should bee the Spouse of Christ, how a particular member of the [Page 511] Church should become a Vniuersall Head of the Church: how Papa, the Pope, anciently a Father, should become the Church, which is alwayes a Mother, it is a mysterie vnsearcha­ble, & past finding out: for sure I am, if the Pope be the Church, let them pretend whomsoeuer they will for their Father, they can haue no Church except Pope Ioane for their Mother.

It remaineth then, that in the next place wee examine the certaintie of that faith, which must be learned from the Pope: for if the Pope haue not Infallibilitie of Iudgement, then is hee not that rule of faith, then is he not that Church, which is [Page 512] the pillar and ground of truth; and consequently miserable is the condition of those poore Christians, that relie vpon his opinion, as vpon the infallible Doctrine of the Church; and first I will proceed to the Popes Suc­cession in doctrine and per­son, & compare the doctrine of the ancient Bishops of Rome with the Popes of these later times, that there­by wee may discerne, whe­ther the Popes Infallibili­tie bee priuiledged by his Chaire, or whether the an­cient Roman faith bee suc­cessiuely deriued from the ancient Bishops of Rome, to the Popes of these latter ages.

SECT. XX. The Church which is finally re­solued into the Pope, wants both Personall and Doctri­nall Succession, as appeares by seuerall instances and excep­tions, both in matters of fact, and matters of faith.

HOsius the Romanist tels vs for certaine,Hos in Cō ­fess. Petri­cou. c. 29. that if we reckon all the Popes that euer were from Peter vntill Iulius the third, there neuer sate in his Chaire any Arrian, any Donatist, any Pelagian, or any other that pro­fessed any manner of Heresie. The reason of this as I con­ceiue is deliuered by Card. [Page 514] Cusanus: Veritas ad­haeret Ca­thedrae, vni­uersa Ca­tholica Ec­clesia ad Petri Ca­thedrā con­globata à Christo nū ­quam rece­dit. Cusan. ad Bohem. Epist 2. The trueth cleaueth fast to Peters Chaire; the whole vniuersall Catholike Church is rolled vp to Peters chaire, & shal neuer depart from Christ. I wil not take vpon mee to exa­mine the Pope, in what Of­fice, in what religion, in what piece of his life he hath suc­ceeded Peter: but that you may know, (howsoeuer the Popes faith is annexed to the Chaire) hee hath err [...], and is subiect to error as [...]e is Pope, I will compare the doctrine of the ancient Bi­shops of Rome, with the faith of the later Popes, and the later Popes Decrees and definitiue Sentences, with their flat contradictions, and contrary Decrees amongst themselues, whereby it shall [Page 515] appeare, that the later Popes haue not onely erred in dis­claiming the decrees of their Predecessours, but haue di­gressed wholly from the an­cient Roman Bishops, both in faith and manners, and withall they want that In­fallibilitie, that personall, and doctrinall Succession, which they so much mag­nifie amongst themselues.

Anacletus Bishop of Rome in the yeere 103, decreed, that after Consecration, Dist. 1. Epis­copus & 2. Peracta. all pre­sent should communicate, or else bee thrust out of the Church, for so (saith hee) the Apostles did set downe, and the holy Church of Rome obserueth. On the contrary, at this day it is made lawfull for the Priests to receiue alone, the people [Page 516] onely gazing and looking on; and withall Pope Iulius the fourth hath decreed in the Councell of Trent: Conc. Trid. Canon. 8. Sess. 22. If any shall say, that Masses, in which the Priest alone doeth communicate, are vnlawfull, and therefore ought to be abro­gated, let him be accursed.

Leo the Great, Bishop of Rome in the yeere 440, speaks of the death of Mar­tyrs in this maner:Leo. Epist. 81. Although the death of many Saints hath been pretious in the Lords sight, yet the death of no innocent per­son hath beene the propitiation for the world, that the righteous receiued crownes, but gaue none, that of the fortitude of the faithfull, haue grown examples of patience, not gifts of righte­ousnesse: that their deaths as [Page 517] they were seuerall persons, were seuerall to euery of themselues, and that none of them by his death, paid the debt of any other man; because it is only our Lord Iesus Christ, in whom all were crucified, all dead, all buried, all raised againe from the dead. On the contrarie,Haec opinio reprobata est à P [...]o 5. Pontifice, et à Gregorio 13. Bel. de Indul. lib. 1 cap. 40. Pope Pius the 5, and Gregorie the 13, both condemned, (saith Bel­larmine) the Diuines of Lo­vaine, and others, who de­fended, that the sufferings of the Saints, cannot bee true satisfactions, but that our punishments are remitted onely by the personall satisfacti­ons of Christ. Nay more (saith he) If the sufferings of Saints may not bee applied to vs, to free vs from the punishment due for our sinnes, lest they should seeme [Page 518] to bee our Redeemers, then cer­tainly wee our selues cannot re­deeme those punishments by our owne labours, Idem ibid. Resp. lest we also should seeme to be our owne Redeemers. But Pope Iulius the fourth, and the Councell of Trent, (saith the Cardinall) most plainly teach the contrary.

Gelasius Bishop of Rome, in the yeere 492 professeth, and declareth for an Article of his beliefe: In the Sacra­ment is celebrated an Image, Gelas. cont. Futych. & Nest. or semblance of the body and blood of Christ, and there ceaseth not to bee the substance or nature of bread and wine. On the con­trary, Pope Innocentius the Third, decreed it for an Ar­ticle of faith in the Coun­cell of Lateran, with a Fir­miter credimus: Wee stedfast­ly [Page 519] beleeue, Lib. 1. De­cret. cap. Firmitèr credimus. that the body and blood of Christ are truely con­tained in the Sacrament of the Altar, the bread being transub­stantiated into his body, and wine into his blood, by the di­uine power▪ so that there must be really, verily, and substanti­ally present, the naturall body and blood of Christ, which was conceiued of the Virgin Mary, and which is ascended into Hea­uen.

Touching the Commu­nion in both kind, the same Gelasius proclaimed to the communicants of his time:Aut integra Sacramenta percipiant, aut ab integris arcean­tur. Gelas. de Consecr. Dist. 2 Cō ­perimus §. Either let them receiue the whole Sacrament, or let them be driuen from the whole: for the diuiding of one and the same Sacrament, cannot be done without great sacriledge. On [Page 520] the contrary, in this latter age, Pope Martin the Fifth, hath decreed it with the consent of a whole Coun­cell:Conc. Con­stant. Sess. 13. If any shall obstinately maintaine, that it is vnlawfull or erronious, to receiue in one kind, hee ought to bee punished, and driuen out as an Heretike.

Gregorie the Great, Bishop of Rome, about the yeere 600, publisheth his instru­ction for the people touch­ing Images:Epist ex Regist. lib. 9. cap. 9. Let the children of the Church now dispersed, be called togeather, and taught by the Testimonies of the Scrip­tures, that nothing made with hands may be worshipped. And withall concludes: If any will make Images, forbid them not; but by all meanes let him avoyd the adoration of them. [Page 521] On the contrary, in this la­ter age Pope Pius the fourth declares it for an Article of Faith: I most firmely auouch, Bulla Pij 4. Art 9. that the Images of Christ, and the Mother of God alwayes a Virgin, and other Saints are to bee had and retained; and that due honour and veneration is to bee giuen to their Images. Againe, touching the vse and sufficiencie of the Scrip­ture, Sect 13. touching the Reall pre­sence, Priuate Masse, Commu­nion in both kindes, Merite of workes, the Popes Supremacie, and the like: Gregory is flat­ly opposite to the Popes of these later times. And that you may yet further heare, that the Popes haue no In­fallibility in their Determi­nations and Decrees, you [Page 522] shall find likewise, that the later Popes doe not onely vary from the Faith of the Ancients, but also differ a­mongst themselues, and con­tradict each other in many substantiall poynts of their owne doctrine.

Pope Caelestine the Third, in the yeere 1191, published a Decree,Alph. ad­uers haeres. lib. 1. c. 4. that of maried per­sons, if one fall into Heresie, the Marriage is dissolued, and the Catholike partie is free to mar­rie againe. Neither (saith Al­phonsus) was this errour of Ca­lestine such as ought to bee im­puted to negligence alone, that wee may say, hee erred as a pri­uate man, not as Pope: for this difinition of Caelestine was extant in the Decretals which I my selfe haue seene and read. [Page 523] On the contrary, Pope In­nocentius the Third, his im­mediate Successor decided the case, and confessed that one of his Predecessors, (which saith the Glosse,Decret li. 4. de diuortijs Quanto §. Praedecess. was Caele­stine) had decreed otherwise, whose resolution was in the olde Decretals, and it was euill that Caelestine said.

Pope Gregorie the Ninth, in the yeere 1227, proclai­meth it to the world,Greg. Ep ad Germ. Ar­chiep. Con­stant. apud M Paris. in Henr. 3. The not knowing the Scriptures, by the testimonie of trueth it selfe, is the occasion of errours, and therefore it is expedient for all men to reade or heare the same. On the contrary, Pope Clement the Eighth, forbids all the common people, yea [...]id Regulars also, to reade or retaine any vulgar Tran­slation [Page 524] of the Scriptures, without licence of their Bi­shop, or Inquisitor: and there hee giues the reason flatly opposite to the Tene [...] of his Predecessor:Azor Inst. Moral. part. 1. l. 8. c. 26. Because the common vse of Scripture is found by experience to bee ra­ther hurtfull then profitable.

Pope Nicholas the fourth, in the yeare 1288 decla­red in his Decretall,Sixti Decr. lib. 5. tit. 12. §. Exijt. that To renounce the proprietie of all things, not in speciall onely, but in common also, is merito­rious and holy, which Christ taught by Word, and confir­med by Example, and the first Founders of the Militant Church deriued to others by pa­terne of their Doctrine and Life: On the contrarie, his Successor Iohn the 22. pub­lished [Page 525] and declared,Extrauag. [...]ohn 2 tit 14 § Cum inter non­nullos. that It is Hereticall, to affirme that Christ and his Apostles had no­thing in speciall, nor in com­mon.

Pope Martin the fifth, in the yeare 1431. in the grand Councell of Basil, Conc. Basil Sess. 33. decreed the Councell aboue the Pope: Pope Eugenius the fourth, Bell de Ec­cles. & Cō ­cil. l. 1. c. 7. his immediate Successor, condemned that Session, & declared the Pope to bee a­boue a Councell. And, that which is most remarkeable, those Romanists which condemne the Translation of our Bible (as if the latter Translation did contradict the former) shall finde,The first Bible was printed at Rome 1590 the second, 1592. that Pope Sixtus Quintus publi­shed in the yeere 1590, and commanded to be read and [Page 526] followed vpon such pain [...] as are mentioned in his Breue; D. Iames his Apol. of Bellu [...]n Pa­pale p 27. within two yeere after was reiected by hi [...] Successor Pope Clement [...] 8. as a Translation erronious,Acta priorū Pontificum sequentes Pontifi [...]es aut infrin­gunt, iut omnino tol­lunt, nihil enim aliud isli Pontifi­culi cogita­bant, quam vt nomē et dignitatem ma [...]orū suo­rum extin­guerent. Plat in Ste­phan. & in Romano. and opposite to th [...] Truth. And thus saith [...] tina, The latter Popes, eithe [...] vi [...]lat, or vtterly repeale th [...] Decrees of their Predecessors▪ For the little pettie Popes ha [...] no other study to busie them­selues withall, but onely to de­fuce the name, and dignitie [...] the former Popes.

First then, wee may ob­serue, that the ancient Bi­shops of Rome, published and declared the same faith and doctrine, which the Protestants teach in the fundamentall poynts at this [Page 527] day. They commaunded Priests and people to com­municate together, contra­ry to the doctrine of Priua [...] Masses: they taught, that the Sacrament was a sem­blance of Christs body, and that the substance of bread did remaine after consecra­tion, contrary to the Faith of Transubstantiation: they commanded the cup to bee giuen to the lay people, which the later Popes for­bid at this day: They con­demned the Worship of I­mages, Merit of works, and the Popes Supremacie; all which doctrines are recei­ued by the later Popes and councels, and declared with Anathema's, to bee beleeued as Articles of faith.

[Page 528]Thus wee see the house di­uided against it selfe, Heu Domus antiqua quā dispari dominaris Domino. the later Popes repealing the Acts of the former, and both con­tradicting each other. Now how the house should stand which is diuided against it selfe; how the Pope should be the Rule of faith, and yet dissent from the faith of his Predecessours: how the Pope should bee the Pillar and ground of Trueth, and yet his Trueth opposed and contradicted by his Succes­sors, I may well conceiue it may be A mystery of Babylon, Reuel. 17.5. but I professe I cannot vn­derstand it. Briefly and tru­ly I may say of the Popes in these later ages, They haue succeeded their predecessors as Caiphas succeeded Aaron, [Page 529] or as sickenesse succeedeth health, or as darknesse suc­ceedeth light; & from these few examples in Faith and Doctrine, I will conclude with the saying of St. Am­brose: Non habent Petri hare­ditutem, qui Petri fidem non habent. Ambros. de Paenit. l. 1. c. 6 They haue not the suc­cession of Peter, that want the faith of Peter.

I proceed to the Popes Succession in person, which (although it be of no force and authoritie, by the testi­monies of our aduersaries, vnlesse there be also a right succession of doctrine in the same Church) yet I wil giue you some few instances and obseruations of their owne Writers, that the vncertain­tie of their Succession may more easily bee discouered by their owne confessions.

[Page 530] Gratian the Compiler of the Popes Decrees, well vn­derstood, that the Popes suc­cession would bee interrup­ted, if his faith and doctrine should bee compared with Peters; and therfore for more certaintie, (by transposing the word Faith into Scate) hath appropriated the right Succession to the Sea of Rome,Petri haere­ditatem non habent, que non habent Petri sedē. Grat. de Poenit dist. 1. c. Potest. in these words: They haue not the Succession of Pe­ter, that want the Seat of Pe­ter. To let passe these for­geries, it is strange to see what shifts the Romanists doe vse, to make good the li­neal descent of their Popes. Rather then they will want authoritie of Scriptures to proue Peters being at Rome, they wil confesse that Rome [Page 531] is meant by that Babylon, Annot. vp­on the Rhe­mish Te­stament. 1. Pet. c. 5. v. 13. which is spoken of in the 16 and 17 of the Reuelati­on, which without doubt is the Seat of Antichrist. Be­sides, they are not agreed a­mong themselues, whether Linus, or Clemens, or Cletus, Quidā post Petrū im­mediatè po­nunt Cle­mentem, vt Tertullianꝰ et Hierony­mꝰ, alii post Petrum po­nunt Linū, & posteà Clemente in &c. Bell. de Rom. Pont. l. 2. c. 5 or Anacletus succeeded Pe­ter, if he were at Rome. Nei­ther can they well resolue, whether the Pope should succeed St. Peter, or St. Iohn [...] for St. Iohn liued 33 yeeres after St. Peter (saith Baronius) so that the succession must bee either deriued from St. Iohn the suruiuour, or else the Pope, who immediately succeeded St. Peter, must bee greater then an Apostle, du­ring the time of Saint Iohns suruiuourship.

[Page 532] Quae tū fa­cies sanctae Rom. Eccle­siae quā foe­dissima cum Romae domi­narētur po­tentissimae aeque ac sor­didissimae meretrices, quorū arbi­trio muta­rētur sedes, darentur E­piscopi, et qd horrendū et nefandū est intruderen­tur in sedē Petri ea­rū Amasii, Pseudopon­tifices, qui non sint nisi ad consignā ­da tempora in Catalogo Pontificum scripti. Ba­ron Annal. in ann. 912.But admit that St. Peter was at Rome, admit the an­cient Bishops of Rome did rightly succeed Saint Peter, yet What was the face of the Roman Church (saith Baroni­us) and how most filthie did it appeare, when the most impo­tent and base Queanes bare all the sway at Rome, changed Sees, and gaue Bishoprickes a [...] at their pleasure; and which is most abominable, and not to be named, intruded their Para­mours into Peters Chaire, false Bishops, whose names are writ­ten in the Catalogue of Popes, onely to note and designe the times.

To passe by the two and twenty Schismes in the Pa­pacie, wherein it was que­stionable betwixt the Pope [...] [Page 533] and Anti-Popes, who were the true Successors of Peter. To let passe the vacancie in the Papall Sea for many moneths and yeeres, during which time the Pope fare at Auinium, & left the Sea of Rome. Their owne Gene­brard confesseth, there were fiftie Popes irregular, Apostatici, Apotactici. Genebr. Chron l 4. disor­dered and Apostaticall. And Bellarmine tells vs, at the Councell of Constance, Bell de Rō. Pont. li. 4. c. 14. there were three Popes, neither could it easily bee resolued, which of them was the true and legiti­mate Pope. Dubius Pa­pa habetur pro non Pa­pa. Bell. de Concil. l. 2. cap. 19. And (saith he) A doubtfull Pope stands for no Pope. If then there were false Popes by Baronius con­fession, if Apostaticall Popes, by Genebrards confession; if doubtfull, and consequently [Page 534] no Popes, by Bellarmins con­fession; what certainty, what assurance can these men haue of the Popes personall Succession?

It was a pertinent and full answer made to a Iesuite, by an acute & learned Doctor of our Church, touching the personall succession of D. Featly in his an­swere to a Iesuit tou­ching per­sonall Suc­cession. the Pope: If by Bishops you vnderstand rightly consecrated, and canoni­cally elected & inuested, Pope Pelagius the first was not so: for he was not or­dained by three Bishops. Pope Hildebrand was not so, who held the Papacie by an Imposture: nor Syl­uester, who aspired to it by Magicke: nor Eugenius, who was first promoted [Page 535] by faction, and afterwards held it in despight of the Councell of Basil. Again, If by true Bishops, you meane Orthodoxall Bi­shops, & preachers of the the truth, Pope Liberius was not such; for he was branded with the note of Arianisme by St. Hierome, and Pope Damasus. Pope Honorius was not such; for he was condemned for the heresie of the Monothelites in three Generall Coun­cells, confirmed by three Popes. Iohn the 23. was not such, who was char­ged in the Councell of Constance with the denyall of the immortality of the Soule, & the life to come, and for that and other [Page 536] blasphemous crimes was deposed by the Councell.

Alphonsus a Castro, was an obedient seruant to the Pope,Quāuis cre­dere tenea­mur ex fide verū Petri successorem esse supre­mum totius Ecclesiae pa­storem, non tamen tene­mur eadē fi­de credere Leonē aut Clementem esse verū Pe­tri successo­rē, quoniam nō tenemur ex fide Ca­tholicâ cre­dere eorum quēlibet ri­tè et cano­nicè fuisse electum. Alph. lib. 1. contr. haeres. cap. 9. yet would hee by no meanes allowe that euery Pope had Infallibilitie in a right line of succession from Peter: For admit (saith hee) that we are bound to beleeue out of Faith, that the true successor of Peter is the supreame Pastor of the Vniuersall Church, yet we are not bound to beleeue with the same faith, that Leo, or Cle­mens, is the true Successour of Peter, because we are not bound to beleeue it, as a point of faith, that either of them had a right and Canonicall election. The reason as I conceiue, why this Succession in person is become so doubtfull and [Page 537] vncertaine amongst them­selues, is partly grounded vpon their owne Councels, and their Popes Decrees:Conc. Flor. in Decret. Eugen. for the Councell of Flo­rence declared, that the in­tention of the Priest did or­deine the Sacraments, and consequently if his intenti­on did faile at the time of Consecration, the Sacra­ment of Orders was vtterly voyd, and the Priests Ordi­nation and Succession for want of intention, was of no effect, and as touching the Popes Decrees, Iulius the se­cond aboue 120 yeres since, published and declared by his Bull, (which all Cardi­nalls, at the entrance of the Conclaue, are sworne to obserue) That if it happen the [Page 538] election of the newe Pope bee made and done, Bulla Iulij 2. in lib. Constit. Pont. Con­stit. 1. & Novus Ho­mo. either by him that is chosen, or by any other of the Colledge of Cardinals, by the heresie of Simonicall con­tracts, giuing, promising, or re­ceiuing any goods of any kind, or by making of any other pro­mise, or obligation of what kind soeuer, whether it bee done by themselues, or others by a few, or by many, that not onely the ele­ction, or assumption so made shal bee from the very moment void and of none effect, but that safe­ly and lawfully they may hold, esteeme, and eschew him as a Magician, an Ethnicke, a Pub­lican, and an arch-heretique. Now if any man make a question, whether the Pope can commit any Simonie or no, let him take his answere [Page 539] from the Popes creature: Thomas Aquinas tells vs,Papa potest incurrere vitium Si­moniae sicut et quilibet alius. 2. 2. q. 100. that the Pope may incurre the sinne of Simonie as well as any other. Besides, the Popes Bull would neuer haue said (If any Pope happen to bee chosen Simoniacally) if they had not beleeued that the Pope might commit Simony. On the other side, if it bee de­manded what Pope in these latter times is guilty of that crime, their owne Treatise intituled, Novus Homo, The new Man, doth plainely ma­nifest, that Sixtus Quintus did climbe into the Chaire by foule Simony; and that since the death of Gregorie the thirteenth, his prede­cessour, there hath not been any true Pope, rightly and [Page 540] Canonically elected.

He who was sometimes a Pope, proclaimed to the world by his publike Wri­tings:Aeneas Syl. de Gost. Conc. Basil. lib. 1. Of the Popes of Rome, we might shew foorth very ma­ny examples, that they haue beene found either heretikes, or else defiled with other vices.

But it shall suffice for a conclusion of this poynt, the ground of Peters succes­sion is doubtfull, the Popes Infallibilitie deriued from Peter, is vncertaine, and con­sequently, the Romanists haue but a Morall & conie­cturall knowledge for their Rule of faith. I call Bellar­mine himselfe to witnes the truth of this assertion.Ius successi­onis Ponti­ficum Ro­manorum in eo funda­tur qd Petrꝰ Romae sedē suam &c. Bellar de Pont. lib. 2. cap. 1. Ratio suc­cessionis ex facto Petri. Ibid. c. 12. First, the right of Succession in the Popes of Rome, is founded in [Page 541] this (saith the Cardinall) that Peter by Christs appointment, placed his Seat at Rome, and there remained till his death. So that the reason of Succes­sion hath his beginning from the fact of Peter. From hence there will arise two questi­ons; the one, whether the Lord did command Peter to make his Sea at Rome: the other, whether the Pope did rightly succeed Peter, Non est im­probabile Dominū a­pertè iussisse vt Petrꝰ se­dē suā Romae figeret. Bell. de Pont. lib. 2. c. 12. Non est de fide, divino et immuta­bili praecep­to, Romae se­dē Petri esse constitutā, est tamen probatissi­mum, et piè credendum. Bel. de Pōt. lib 4 c. 4. Fortè nō est de iure di­uino Roma­nū Pontifi­cem Petro succedere. Idem ibid. §. Obser­vandum. if hee were at Rome. For re­solution of these points, the Cardinall makes these seue­rall answers: First, It is not improbable, that our Lord did plainely commaund Peter to make his Seate at Rome, yet this is no matter of Faith, nor yet of a diuine and vnchange­able precept, but it is most [Page 542] probable, and it is piously to bee beleeued. To the second he answereth: Peraduenture it is not (De Iure divino) from diuine right and authoritie, that the Pope succeedeth Peter, yet it doth appertaine to the Ca­tholike (Roman) Faith.

Thus by Bellarmines con­fession, it is but probable and piously to be beleeued, that Peter was at Rome, and made his Seate there: and therefore at the best it can bee but probable, that the Pope should succeed Peter in that Sea. Besides, there is no necessitie to beleeue it: for (saith hee) it is no point of Faith; and withall, if Christ gaue any such pre­cept, yet it may be changed. Againe, if the Pope doe [Page 543] succeed Peter, it is but with a Peraduenture, it may be so, and it may not bee so: for (saith hee) it is not of any Diuine right or command, although it belong to the Catholique Romane faith. Adde to these the vncertain­tie of their pastors Intenti­on in the ordination of their Priests, the vncertaintie of their Simoniacall contracts, which make void their ele­ction, the knowne and con­demned heresies of Popes in the Roman Sea, with the vncertaintie of Peters being at Rome, on which all the succession of person and do­ctrine doth depend: and tell me, if the Popes infallibili­tie, which is groūded whol­ly vpon probabilities, can [Page 544] bee the Rule of faith; tell me, whether the Pope or his predecessors haue had an vndoubted succession in do­ctrine and person; tell mee, whether to neglect the most safe and sure rule of Scriptures, and to follow this morall and coniecturall faith, bee not Via dubia, a doubtfull and vncertaine way, and Vid Deuia, a wandring and By-way.

SECT. XXI. The Infallibilitie of the Popes Iudgement, which is made the Rule of Faith, to deter­mine all Controuersies, is not yet determined by the learned Romanists amongst them­selues.

TO lay a sure Foun­dation, that this Pa­pall building may be strong and immoueable, Hostiensis, Papa & Christus fa­ciunt vnum Consistoriū, &c. Extr. de Translat Prael. C. Quanto Ab. by way of preuen­tion, giues vs to vnderstand, that the Pope and Christ make but one Consistory, so that (sinne excepted) to which the Pope is subiect, the Pope in a man­ner can do all that God can doe. [Page 546] He might more truely haue added, that the Pope can do more then God can do: for God cannot lye (saith the Apo­stle.) Howsoeuer, the Pope in this is much beholding to this Cardinall; for (with­out this exception of sinne) the Pope could not haue beene Antichrist, since hee must bee The man of Sinne. Neither is this man diffe­rent in opinion from his fellow Romanists: for Cor­nelius Bitonto pronounced o­penly in the Councell of Trent: Conc. Trid. sub Paulo 3. Orat. Cornel. Ep. Bitont. Who will so vniustly weigh things, but he will say, the Pope is the light that commeth into the world? Thus the Cardinal hath equalled him with God the Father, (ex­cepto peccato:) and the Bi­shop [Page 547] hath giuen him the proper attribute of Christ: and that an Infallibilitie might be granted him, Sal­meron the Iesuite proclaimes it for a certaine trueth:Tom. 1. pro­log. 9. princ. 5. Can. 1. c. 1. ad Hier. The Lord promised his Spirit to Christs Vicar, and the successor of Peter, and by his authoritie hee determines all matters of Faith. So that from these seuerall assertions, wee may confidently affirme, that ei­ther the Pope hath the Of­fice of the holy Ghost gi­uen him, to leade him into all truth;Reuel. 13.5, 7. or certainly There was giuen vnto him a mouth speaking great things and blas­phemies, to make warre with the Saints, and to ouercome them. First therefore let vs examine vpon what ground [Page 548] the Popes infallibilitie may be prooued, and whether it bee receiued as a doubtfull opinion, or as an Article of faith. Touching the first, according to their seuerall fancies,Non Cathe­dra facit Sacerdorē, sed Sacerdos Cathedrā. Chrysost. the Romanists haue deuised seuerall reasons: some pretend, that the truth is annexed to the Chaire, as if Christ had prayed for his Tribunals, Courts, & Con­sistories: others deriue it from the example of Cai­phas, who being High Priest by vertue of his office, right­ly prophecied of Christ, and consequently,Quādo De­us voluit etiā matū immentum rationabili­tèr loquutū est Nec ideò admoniti sunt homi­nes in deliberationibꝰ suis etiam Asinina ex­pectare con­silia. Aug Epist. 58. the Pope cannot faile in Iudgement. A wittie argument, no doubt, and available for the Deuill himselfe; for by the same reason, the Deuil may [Page 549] conclude, that he hath also the Spirit of God, for he te­stified of Christ: I know thou art Christ the Son of the liuing God. Now the Apostle doth witnesse accordingly: that No man can say the Lord Ie­sus, but in the spirit of trueth. 1 Cor. 12. He therfore that shall reade in the 11. of Iohn, that Cai­phas did not speake of him­selfe, but as High Priest, was guided by the spirit of pro­phesie: let him take his an­swere from Saint Matthew: Math. 26. that Caiphas himselfe the very same yeere, being high Priest, did publikely and Iu­dicially pronounce our Sa­uiour a blasphemer; and I thinke none will say, that this iudgement of his pro­ceeded frō the holy Ghost, [Page 550] vnlesse he wil say, when the Pope speaketh the truth, he doth it vnawares, like Cai­phas, when his heart and purpose was bent to ouer­throw the truth. There are others that cōfesse the Pope may erre as man, but not as Pope, as if his Manhood & his Popedome had two ca­pacities, and were in two distinct persons. Plato a hea­then Philosopher did note it as a thing ridiculous, that one in his dayes did main­taine:Plato de Repub. lib. [...]thuasm. A Magistrate could not erre as Magistrate, nor Prince as Prince. And their owne Alphonsus à Castro, scoffes at the Dominicans, Eos non ve­reri coram [...]opulo ia­ctare et di­cere qui semel habi­tum illius Ordinis susceperit, non posse in fide errare & deficere. Alph. lib 1. de haeres. cap 9. for that they were wont to brag before the people, that those which haue once vsed the habit of their [Page 551] Order, could not erre, nor faile in faith. Shall we say then that this new Diuinitie was learned from some old Phi­losopher, or that the Pope is chosen out of the Order of Dominicans, which haue the gift of Infallibilitie?

Glaber Rodolphus, who was liuing in the time of Benedict the Ninth, tells vs, that Bene­dict was chosen Pope at ten yeeres olde: shall wee say then, that this child had in­fallibilitie, and could not erre? or must wee beleeue the Trueth was annexed to his Chaire? and that he was able to guide the whole Church, and direct a whole Councell, when hee knew not the principles of Reli­gion? Againe, what shal we [Page 552] say of hereticall and wicked Popes, who haue neither Faith nor Religion? If we peruse the Councell of Basil, Eugenium contempto­rem sacrorū Canonum, pacis et ve­ritatis Ec­clesiae Dei perturbato­rem notori­um &c. Conc Basil. Sess. 34. Baron ann. 985. n 1. we shall find Pope Euge­nius condemned and deposed for a despiser of the holy Ca­nons, a Symonist, a forsworne man, a man incorrigible, a schismatike, a man fallen from the faith, and a wilfull here­tique. Boniface the seuenth, (saith Baronius) was a verie villaine, a Church-robber, a sa­uage thiefe, the cruell murderer of two Popes, and the invader of Peters Chaire. Iohn the 13 was accused and detected in a Synode of Bishops, Sigon reg. Ital lib. 7. ann. 963. for mur­ders, adulteries, incests, periuries and other vices of all sorts. A­lexander the sixth,Mach. de Princ c. 18. gaue his mind to nothing but villeny, [Page 553] and fraud, Mart. Pol. ann. 986. Platin. in Syluest. 2. whereby to deceiue men. Syluester the second, leauing his Monastery, betooke himselfe wholly to the Deuil, by whose helpe hee gate the Pope­dome, vpon condition, that after his death he should be the deuils both body and soule.

Must wee beleeue these Popes were guided by the holy Spirit, and led into all truth? that the trueth was annexed to their Chaire, and not to their Persons? must wee acknowledge (for what vertue wee know not) that these Bishops were the Virtuall and totall Church? were these the right succes­sors of Peter in faith and do­ctrine? or shall we say they erred as men, but not as Popes, they erred in their [Page 554] Pallace, but not in their Consistorie; they erred in matters of fact, but not in matters of Faith. These things are so groundlesse in themselues, that they rather deserue laughter, then an an­swer;Aliud stans, Aliud se­dens. they are riddles with­out sense, that a man, & not a Pope; in a stoole, not in the Chaire; in a company, not in a Councel, may fail [...], and not erre; wander, but not goe astray; misse the trueth, but not doe amisse. Cardinal Cusanus was so far from the beliefe of this new doctrine, that hee ieasted at Pope Eugenius, and vnder that pretext, derided the In­fallibilitie of the Pope.Quomodo potest Papa Eugenius dicere hoc verū esse. si ipse velit et non alitèr. Cusan. de Concord. Cath. lib. 2. cap. 29. How can Pope Eugenius (saith he [...]) tell this is true, if he will haue it [Page 555] so, and not otherwise, as though the inspiration of the holy Ghost were wholly at the Popes com­mand, to breath onely where hee will haue him?

It is confessed on both sides, that Christ is the Way and Trueth, and by his word he hath prescribed a sure & an infallible rule to find out the truth: If the Scripture were but a partiall rule, yet by Bellarmines owne confes­sion, it is the most certaine, Scriptura [...]egula cre­dendi cer­rissima tu­tissimaque est Bell. de Verbo Dei. lib. 1. cap. 2. and most safe rule of faith. Now [...]et vs see what is the most certaine rule of the Roman [...]aith, and on what assured meanes their proselytes may [...]est satisfied, and infallibly [...]nstructed for the saluation [...]f their soules. Suarez the [...]esuite tells vs, It is the Ca­tholike [Page 556] truth, Veritas Ca­tholica est Pontificem definientem ex Cathedrâ esse Regulā Fidei, quae errare non potest, quā ­do aliquid authenticè proponit v­niuersa Ec­clesia tan­quā de fide, &c. Suarez de Tripl. virt. Theol. Sect. 8. disp. 5. de reg. pag. 214. Censeo esse rem de fide ce [...]tā. Suar. ibid p. 214. that the Pope de­fining in his Chaire, is the rule of Faith, which cannot erre, that is, whē he doth propose any thing authentically to the vni­uersall Church, to be beleeued [...] a diuine faith: and thus (saith he) all Catholike Doctors teach in these dayes; and I thinke it [...] be a thing certainly to be belee­ued. This Iesuit maintain [...] the Infallibility of the Pope yet speakes but (as he thinks and withall tells vs, It is th [...] Catholike doctrine of these times, when as hee should haue prooued it by ancient Records, that it was the Ca­tholike doctrine of all ages: For there is no man liuing, let him be Papist o [...] Prote­stant, if hee be a man of [...]n­derstanding, but will hol [...] it [Page 557] most requisite, and absolute­ly necessary, that the rule of faith should be declared by Christ and his Apostles, by Catholike Traditions, by Generall Councels, by the consent of Fathers, and the whole Christian world, and certainly, if the Popes De­crees & conclusions be that rule of faith, they ought to be confirmed by al those te­stimonies, since on his judg­ment both Councels, & Bi­shops do depend; but especi­ally, since the error of the Pope is (adiudged) to be the error of the Vniversall Church.

Againe, he that deliuered what hee thought was the Catholike doctrine of these times, touching the Popes Infallibility in generall, tels [Page 558] vs of an other point at that time questionable, (viz.) Whether it was to bee beleeued as an Article of faith, Idem ibid. pag. 218. that the or that particular Pope were [...] true Pope: This doctrine (saith he) I taught at Rome affirma­tiuely, in the yeere 1585: but withall professeth, that many at that time thought otherwise. He that proclaimed it to the world, that the Popes defi­nitiue sentence in his chaire, was the rule of Faith, with­all professeth, that within these few yeeres it was not resolued, whether this or that particular Pope might erre or no. And as it was obserued by a judicious and religious Gentleman, M Noy of L. Inne. (for I shall gladly acknowledge a­ny thing that I receiued frō [Page 559] any man) this later question produced a new Quaere, viz If the Pope were not a true Pope, and Canonically ele­cted, then that person which worshipped a Saint canoni­zed by that Pope, commits flat Idolatry, by reason the Saint wants his right Cano­nization, for want of the Popes true and Canonicall election. Many such doubts (said he) were mooued tou­ching this Rule of Faith, which neither the Iesuite was able to resolue, nor the Church had as yet determi­ned. Hee that can but spell, and put these things toge­ther, would feare and trem­ble, to think he hath no bet­ter assurance of his saluati­on, then a doubtfull, vncer­taine [Page 560] questionable and vr­resolued way to guide him into the paths of sauing knowledge. And that the world may know the Rule of Faith, (which ought ge­nerally to bee receiued De Fide, of all the faithfull) is altogether doubtfull in the Roman church, I haue sum­moned 12 of the Popes dis­ciples to deliuer their seue­rall opinions, concerning the Popes Infallibilitie; but how they concurre in wit­nessing the trueth of this Doctrine, I leaue it to bee iudged.

Bellar. de Rom. Pont. l. 4. c. 6.1. Bellarmine] It is pro­bable, that the Pope, not onely as Pope cannot erre, but as a priuate man, cannot fall into Heresie, or hold any obstinate [Page 561] opinion contrary to the Faith.

2. Albertus Pigghius.Piggh. de Eccle. Hier. lib. 6. c. 13.] The Iudgement of the Pope is more certaine then the Iudge­ment of a Generall Councell, or else the whole world.

3. Hosius.Hos. lib. 2. cont. Brent.] Bee the wic­kednesse of Popes neuer so great, it can neuer hinder, but that this promise of God shall euer be true; The Popes shall shew thee the truth of Iudgement.

4. Iohannes de Turrecre­mata.Ioh. sum. de Eccles. lib. 2. cap. 112.] It is better to rest vpon the sentence of the Pope, which hee deliuers out of Iudgement, then the opinions of whatsoeuer wise men in matters of Scrip­ture: for euen Caiphas was a High Priest, and although hee was wicked; yet hee prophecied truely.

5. Siluester Prierias] Who­soeuer [Page 562] leaneth not to the Do­ctrine of the Romane Church, I'tier contr. Lutherum. and Bishop of Rome, as vnto he Infallible rule of God (of which doctrine the holy Scripture hath taken force and authoritie) hee is an heretike.

Episc. Bi­tont. Conc. ex Rom. 1. cap 14. Ro­mae habit.6. Cornelius Mus] I must ingenuously confesse, I would giue more credit to one Pope in matters of faith, then to a thou­sand Augustines, Hieromes, or Gregories, &c. For I be­leeue and know, the chiefe Bi­shop in matters of faith cannot erre, because the authoritie of the Church in determination of things belonging to faith, is re­sident in that Bishop; and so the errour of that Bishop should come to be the errour of the v­niuersall Church.

Thus the great Moun­taines [Page 563] were in labour, and at last appeares Ridiculus Mus: This man cares nei­ther for Fathers, nor Coun­cells; he knowes the Pope cannot erre, and he is a man of experience: You may beleeue him, for hee was a Preacher at twelue yeeres old, (saith Sixtus Senensis:) but there are six more of the Popes sworne seruants; they are Legales homines, and craue audience, hauing the said power and iurisdiction with the rest, onely they say they cannot flatter, they must and will speake the trueth in this, howsoeuer the rest bee diuided from them; and first concerning the first of the second ranke.

[Page 564]7. Alphonsus de Castro] We doubt not, Non dubi­tamus an hareticum esse et Pa­pam esse coire in v­nū possint. Non enim credo esse aliquem adeò impu­dentem Pa­pae asserta­torē vt ei tribuere hac velit, vt nec er­rare, nec in­terpretatio­ne sacrarū literarum hallucinari possit, cum constet plures Papas adeò illiteratos esse vt Grammaticam penitus ignorent, qui fit vt sacras literas interpretari possint? Alphonsus aduers Hae­res. lib. 1. cap. 4. whether one ma [...] may bee a Pope and an heretike both together: for I beleeue there is none so shameles a flat­terer of the Pope, that will graunt him that prerogatiue, that hee can neuer erre, nor bee deceiued in expoūding the scrip­ture, seeing it is well knowne, that diuers Popes haue beene so palpably vnlearned, that they haue beene vtterly ignorant of their Grammar, and therefore how can they be able to expound the Scriptures?

[Page 565]8. Lyra.Exhoc patet quod Eccle­sia non con­sistit in ho­minibus ratione po­testatis vel dignitatis Ecclesiasti­cae, vel saecu­laris, quia multi Prin­cipes, et sū ­mi Pontifi­ces inuenti sunt Aposta­taffe à Fide Lyra in Math. 6.] Hereby it appea­reth, that the Church standeth not vpon men, in consideration of their power or dignitie Ec­clesiasticall, or Temporall: for many Princes and Popes haue prooued Apostata's, and strayed from the Faith.

9. Arboreus.] The Pope may erre in Fai h; and he see­meth to me to bee in a foule er­rour that thinketh otherwise: surely they doe but flatter the Bishop of Rome, Papa infidē errare po­test, et tota mihi aber­rare vide­tur qui alitèr sentit, assentatur fanè Romano Pon­tifici qui faciunt eum immunem à lapsu hareseot & schismatis. Thesoph. lib 4. cap. 32. that make him free from falling into Schisme, or heresie.

[Page 566] Neque ali­quem sua dignitas ab increpatio­nibus tutū reddit, quae Petrum nō reddidit, multos (que) a­lios eodem praditos gradu, vt Marcellū, qd Diis li­b [...]sset, vt Calestinum qd cū Nesto­rio haretico senti [...]et. De Donat Constātini. Persona quaelibet singularis de Ecclesia cuius [...]un (que) dignitatis etiamsi Papalis, circundata est infirmitate et deuiabilis est, vt fallere possit & falli. Gerson. de examinat doctr. Consid. 1.10. Laurentius Valla] No mans dignitie doth defend him from controulment: for Peter was not so defended, nor many others that were aduanced to that degree, as Pope Marcelli­nus, in that he offered sacrifices vnto Idols, and Pope Caelesti­nus, in that he agreed with the heretike Nestorius.

11. Gerson.] Euery one of what degree soeuer in the Church, although hee bee Pope himselfe, is compassed with in­firmities, and subiect vnto er­rour, and is in possibilitie of deceiuing, and being deceiued.

[Page 567]12. Erasmus.Siverum est qd quidam asseuerant Romanum Pontificem errore iudi­cali nō posse vnquam er­rare, quid o­pus genera­libus Conci­liis? quid o­pus in Con­ciliū accer­sere Iuris consultes? ac theologos eruditos, si pronūtian labi nō pos­sit? cur datꝰ est apellati­oni locus? vet ad Syno­dum, vel ad eundē rectiꝰ edoctum po­stea quā semel de causa pro [...]ūtiauit Pontificē? quor­sum attinet Academia [...] in tractandis fidei quaestioni­bus distorquere, cum ex vno Pontifice quod verū est, [...]diro liceat? Imò qui fit vt Pontificis huius decreta [...]um illius pugnā Decretis? Eras. Annot in 1 Cor. 7.] If it bee true which some said, that the Bishop of Rome can neuer erre Iudically, what need Generall Councells, why are men skil­full in the Lawes, and learned in Diuinitie, sent for to Coun­cells? If hee pronouncing can­not erre, wherfore lyeth there any Appeale from the Pope to a Councell, or to the Pope him­selfe being better informed? To what purposes are so ma­ny Vniuersities troubled with handling questions of Faith, when truth may be had from his mouth? Nay, how commeth it to passe, that one Popes Decrees are found contrary to an other?

[Page 568]The learned Romanists are all vowed seruants to the Pope; but they giue not vp their verdict concerning the Popes Infallibilitie, by reason they agree not in cer­taine amongst themselues, and the reason as I conceiue of this their disagreement, is the want of good eui­dence, and pregnant testi­monies giuen to the Inquest in the Popes behalfe: for it is obserued by a Reuerend D. Feilds Append. to the 3. Book. c. 26 p. 340. Diuine, That the Infallibi­litie of the Popes Iudgement was so farre from being a thing resolued of in the Church of God before our time, that Stapleton confesseth of these times, It is yet no matter of Faith, but of opinion onely; because [Page 569] so many famous & renow­ned diuines haue euer hol­den the contrary, as Gerson, Almaine, Occam, almost all the Parisians, all they that thought the Councell to be aboue the Pope, Adri­anus Sextus, Durandus, Al­phonsus à Castro, and many moe. And it was likewise published & declared, with­in these two hundred yeres, by their owne generall and graund Councell of Basil, Vniuersalis Ecclesia sa­pe obedien­tiam Roma­nis Pontifi­cibꝰ subtra­xit, Mar­cellino, A­nastatio, Liberio, Io­hanni 12. Benedicto 9. Benedi­cto 13. Io­hanni 23— Certum est Papāerrare posse, sape experti su­mus et legi­mus Papam errasse. Epi. Synod. Cō ­cil. Basil. that the vniuersall Church did oftentimes withdraw her obedi­ence from the Romane Bishops, as namely from Marcellinus, Anastasius, Liberius, Iohn the twelfth, Benedict the ninth Benedict the thirteenth, and Iohn the 23: and (there the reason is giuen) because it is [Page 570] certaine, the Pope may erre, and this (say they) wee haue read and seene by experience.

These things being adui­sedly heard and considered, I haue again consulted with the Foreman of the Inquest, (who would haue it piously to bee beleeued, that the Pope cannot erre:) what should become of those that yeelde obedience to the Pope, when he may erre and teach false doctrine; or how shall a troubled mind learne the Law from his mouth, when he neuer preacheth? To this the Cardinall re­plies:Bell. de ver­bo Dei lib. 3. cap. 5. It is not materiall whe­ther you heare the Pope or no, when as there are Teachers in your owne Parish, who may in­forme you. And thus from [Page 571] the Essentiall Church, to the Councell, from the Councell to the Consistorie of Car­dinalls, from the Consisto­rie to the Pope, from the Pope wee are sent at last to the Bishop or Priest of the Parish; & this is Via Dubia, a doubtfull and vncertaine way, and this is Via Deuia, a wandring and By-way.

SECT. XXII. The Church, vpon which the learned Romanists ground their Faith, is no other then the Pope: and the Church, vpon which the vnlearned Romanists do relie, is no other then their Parish Priest.

TOllet the Iesuite ob­seruing, that diffe­rence of opinions might breed some distracti­on in the Church, and scru­ples in the minds of the ig­norant, resolues with what safetie the Romish Prose­lytes may relie vpon their Priests doctrine:Si rusticus circa arti­culos credat suo Episcopo propouēti a­liquod dog­ma haereti­cū meretur in credendo, licet sit er­ror, quia te­netur cre­dere donec ei constet esse contra Ecclesiam. Toll de In­struct Sa­cerd. lib. 4. cap 3. If one be­leeue (saith hee) his Bishop or [Page 573] Prelate preach contrarie to the Faith, thinking, that it is so be­leeued by the Church, such a one shall not onely not sinne, but also in beleeuing that falshood, shall performe an act meritori­ous. The beliefe then of the Romish doctrine, doeth not consist altogether in the trueth of it, but in the faith of the beleeuer: for let it be true or false, if it bee recei­ued with an affected igno­rance, and a blinde obedi­ence, the partie shall be safe, as it were by fire; that is, as they elegantly vnderstand it, shall goe through the fire of Purgatory to heauen.

Cardinall Cusanus, hath giuen his voice with Cardi­nal Tollet, that it is the safest and surest way to relie vpon [Page 574] the Priest as Ruler of the people, without further in­quirie of the trueth: and thereupon he cries out with admiration, as if hee would astonish his Disciples with the name of the Church:Quā firma est aedifica­tio Ecclesiae, quia nemo decipi potest etiam per malū praesidentem. Si dixeris Domine obediui tibi in praeposito, hoc tibi suf­ficiet ad sa­lutem, tu e­nim per o­bedientiam quam facis praeposito, quē Ecclesia [...]olerat, de­cipi nequis etiāsi prae­ceperit alia quā debuit: praesumit e­nim ecclesia de illa sen­tentia cui si tu obedie­ris magna erit me [...]ces tu [...]. Obede­en [...]t [...]tur irr [...]tionalis est co [...] su [...] ­m [...]ta obedientia et per fectissima, scil. quando obeditur si­ne inquisi­tione ratio­nis, sicut tu­mentū obe­dit domino suo. Cusan. Exist lib. 2. & lib. 6. O how strong is the building of the Church▪ for no man can be deceiued, no not by an euill Bi­shop, if thou say vnto God, O Lord, I haue obeyed thee in my Bishop; this shall suffice thee vnto saluation: for thou canst not bee deceiued by thy obedi­ence, that thou yeeldest to the Bishop, whom the Church suffe­reth, although hee commaund thee other things then he ought to doe: for the Church presu­meth his sentence to bee good; which sentence if thou obey, thy reward shall bee great. Obedi­ence [Page 575] therefore without reason, is a full and perfect obedience, that is, when thou obeyest with­out inquiring of reason, as a horse is obedient to his Master.

The Bishop or Priest then is the man we must o­bey and beleeue (for his lips preserue knowledge, & his tongue will tell no lies,) but what if hee faile in his do­ctrine? what if hee erre in his opinion? are we sure he doeth euer deliuer the con­stant Tenet of his Church? Admit then Saint Bernard were aliue; and if a poore ignorant soule should come vnto him, and demand of him, whether hee thinke it possible for a man to keepe the Commandements; will he say, that a man may keep [Page 576] them, for the Church tea­cheth so,Bernard in Can. Serm. 50. when as he himself confidently affirmeth; Ther­in thou shalt yeeld vnto vs that the Commaundements neither haue been fulfilled by any man in this life, nor indeed can bee. Admit that Thomas Aquinas were aliue, and one of his disciples should desire to be resolued, what worship to giue an Image, would he tell him, it must be worshipped with Dulia, an inferiour ho­nour, when as himselfe pro­testeth,Quod eâdē reuerentia exhibeatur Imagini Christi, vt ipsi Christo. Aquin. p. 3. q. 25. art 3. that the Image of Christ is to bee honoured with the same honour that Christ himselfe is? Admit that Car­dinal Caietan were aliue, and one should desire to know whether the Bookes of Ma­cabees were canonical Scrip­tures, [Page 577] would hee teach they were Canonicall, when his fellow Canus professeth,Canus li. 2. loc. Theol. cap. 11. hee was so farre from teaching it, that hee maintained the contrary? Looke vpon the grand & fundamental point of Transubstantiation, if a Ro­manist will consult with the Priests and Bishops of these late ages, it will appeare, there could be no certaintie for an ignorant lay man to build his faith vpon the re­solution of his Priest or Prelate. As for instance in this particular poynt: If a lay Papist had required sa­tisfaction of Bishop Fisher, Whether the doctrine of Transubstantiation was groū ­ded vpon the authoritie of the Scripture; it is presu­med, [Page 578] he would haue answe­red according to his owne writing:Roffens. contr. Capt. Babylonicā c. 10. N. 8. & O. Non potest per vllam Scripturam probare: It cannot bee proued by any (place of) Scripture. If hee had appea­led from the Bishop to a Court of Cardinals, Cardi­nall de Aliaco would haue told him,Patet quod ille modꝰ sit possibilis, nec repug­nat rationi nec autho­ritati Bibliae &c. Pet. de Alliac. in 4. Sent. q. 6. Art. 1. Caier. in 3. part q. 79. Art 1. The maner which supposeth the substance of bread to remaine, is possible; neither is it contrary to reason, nor the authoritie of the Scriptures Card. Caietan would haue told him, That part which the Gospell hath not expressed, wee haue receiued expresly from the Church: viz. the conuersion of the bread and wine into the bo­dy and blood of Christ. Card. Bellarmine would haue told him, It is not altogether impro­bable, [Page 579] that there is no expresse place of Scripture to prooue it, Bellar. de Euch. lib. 3. cap. 23. and it may iustly bee doubted, whether the Text bee cleare e­nough to inforce it. Againe, admit an ignorant lay man would require the iudge­ment of particular Priests in former ages; Bertram a Priest would haue told him:Bertr. of the body and blood of Christ. ann. 1623. In respect of the substance of the creatures, looke whatsoeuer they were before Consecration, they are euen the same after. Bellar. de Euch. l. 5. c. 15. Peter Lombard and Aquinas would haue told him, that the Sa­crament of the Altar was a commemoratiue sacrifice, be­cause it communicated the ef­fects of the real killing of Christ. Ante Late­ranense Cō ­cilium non fuit dogma fidei. Scot. in 4. Sent. dist. 11. q. 3. Scotus would haue told him, Transubstantiation was not be­leeued as a point of faith, before [Page 580] the Councel of Lateran, (about 400 yeeres agoe. Durand would haue told him, The materiall part of the consecra­ted bread was not conuerted. Durand. 4. d. 11. q. 1. & Bell. de Euchar. lib. 3. cap. 13. All these were Priests, and members of the Romane Church: they were Defen­ders of the Roman Faith in their times; they declared by their Writings and In­structions to the people, that doctrine which was al­together different, if not flatly opposite to the Tenet of the now Roman Church. And from hence it will fol­low, that either the Roman Church doth want that V­nitie in poynts of Faith, (which they so much mag­nifie amongst themselues) or otherwise it is an vnsta­ble, [Page 581] and a doubtfull way to relie vpon the instructions of his Bishop or Priest for the assurance of his right beliefe. Moreouer, that the Cardinals & Bishops main­tained a different doctrine from their owne Church, it will appeare by the seue­rall confessions, & confuta­tions of their own Church­men. Touching Bertram, Bellar. de Script. Ec­cles. Tom. 7 p 121. (Bellarmine saith) Paschasius Ratbertus liuing at that time, wrote a booke against him, and confuted his errour. Touching Peter Lombard and Aquinas, Bellarmine tells vs,Bellarm. de Euch. lib. 5. cap. 15. They were not carefull of that which is now in question, viz. the daily renewed reall sacrifi­cing of Christ. Touching Scotus, their own Suarez tels [Page 582] vs,Suar. in 3. Tho. Euch. disp. 5. sect. 2. he was to bee corrected for his opinion of the Sacra­ment. Touching Durand, Bellarmine professeth, That saying of Durand is hereticall, Bellar. de Euch. lib. 3. cap. 13. although hee is no heretike, be­cause hee is ready to submit to the iudgement of the Church. Thus for want of that sure rule of faith, which is squa­red by the Word of God, both Priests and people rest doubtfull of the issue and their successe in controuer­sie,1 Cor. 14.8. and if the Trumpet giue an vncertaine sound, who shall prepare himselfe vnto the bat­tell? (saith the Apostle.)

It is no difficult matter to runne through all ages, and all points in difference be­twixt vs, and to shew that many Priests and Bishops, [Page 583] who liued and died mem­bers in the Roman Church, taught different doctrine from the now Roman faith. This way therefore is cer­tainly vncertaine; and this was easily discouered by their Superiors, insomuch that Stapleton, by way of preuention, prescribeth this direction for the common people:Non quid sed quid lo­quatur fide­lis populus attendere debet—Or­dinarius Ecclesiae Do­ctor audien­dus est non indicandus. Stapl. princ. fid. doct. contr. 4 lib. 8. c. 5. & 9. They must not intend what is spoken, but attend to him that speaketh, for hee is to be heard, and not iudged. And because through such blind obedience, and implicit be­liefe, it might be thought a poore lay man will not bee able to render an account of his faith, the Rhemists pro­claime it for sound and Ca­tholike doctrine, that if an [Page 584] ignorant Papist be conuen­ted before the Commissionere for his Religion, he shall ap­peale onely to the Romane Church, and his owne Church shall sufficiently warrant his beliefe:Rhem. An­not. in Luk. 12.11. He saith enough, and defendeth himselfe sufficiently, say they, when hee answereth he is a Catholike man, and that hee will liue and die in that Faith, which the Catholique Church throughout all Christi­an Countreys hath, and doeth teach, and that his Church can giue a reason of all the things which they demaund of him. How poore an Apologie he makes for his Religion that saith, he is a Catholike, and thinkes to be saued by ano­ther mans faith, who doeth not vnderstand? Saint Peter [Page 585] who is pretended to be the Popes predecessor, taught the Catholiques of former ages an other lesson:1. Pet. 3.15. Be rea­dy (saith hee) alwayes to giue an answere to euery man that asketh you a reason of that hope that is in you with meekenesse and feare.

But obserue the policie of the Church of Rome, they pretend that Ignorance is the Mother of Deuotion, and therefore (say they) it will be sufficient for the lay peo­ple to beleeue the Priest, and to rest vpon the authoritie of the Church, and for that purpose, Bellarmine instru­cteth his Disciples, that the learned must labour, and search out the mysteries of Religion, but the ignorant [Page 586] may sit and take their ease: The oxen did plow and labour, Roues ara­bāt et asinae pascebantur iuxta eos, docet per bo­ues signifi­cari homi­nes doctos, per asinas homines imperitos, qui simplicitèr credentes in intelligētia maiorum acquiescunt Bell. lib. 1. de Iustif. c. 7 (saith Gregorie) and the asses fed by them: By the oxen (saith the Cardinall) are meant the learned Doctors of the Church, by the asses are meant the igno­rant people, which out of simple beliefe rest satisfied in the vn­derstanding of their Superiors. I will not applie the Cardi­nalls illustration, for I speak not this out of scorne and disgrace, but out of shame and pitie, to see the poore ignorant soule, not onely a­bused in the name, but in the nature of that thing, which concernes the salua­tion of his soule.

Canus their owne Bishop of Canaries, professeth open­ly, that it was the custome [Page 587] of vnlearned men of Sara­cens, of Pagans, of Heretiques, Canus loc. Theol. lib. 12. cap. 4. to receiue the blind and sense­lesse opinions of their Sects, with­out iudgement and examinati­on. And Espenceus tells vs,Espenc. in 2 Tim. 3. Num. 17. It was the Colliers faith, who be­ing demanded what hee belee­ued, made answere, he beleeued what the Church beleeued, and the Church beleeued what hee beleeued. Is not this the pra­ctise of the church of Rome at this day? Are they not fully perswaded, that with­out deepe ignorance of the people, it is not possible for their Church to stand? doe they not in this point parti­cularly vrge these & the like Scriptures▪ Obedience is bet­ter then sacrifice: Heare the Church: The Priests lips pre­serue [Page 588] knowledge, and the like: How fitly, may I say, pro­phetically doth St. Hierome reflect vpon the Priests of these latter times, wherein they chase the people from the Scriptures, and suffer them vtterly to know no­thing:Nolint dis­cipulos rati­one aiscute­re, sed se Praecursores sequi. Hier. in Esay lib. 9 cap. 30. These men (saith hee) challenge vnto themselues such authoritie, that whether they teach with the right hand or the left; whether they teach good things or bad; they will not haue their disciples with reason to examine their sayings, but onely for to follow them being their leaders. And certainly here­in they much resemble the Iewes, who as Lyra repor­teth, had that conceit of their great Rabbies, in so much they made it their o­pen [Page 589] profession,Respōdendū est quicquid hoc modo proponitur, etiamsi di­cant dextrā esse sin: strā. Lyra in Deut. ca. 11. Whatsoeuer they say vnto vs, we must needs receiue it; yea, although they tell vs the right hand is the left. And this is the actiue au­thority the Bishop or Parish Priest doth exercise toward the people; and this is the passiue obedience, with an implicite faith, the people submits vnto the Priest. Giue me leaue therefore to speake vnto the Roman Bi­shop, or Parish Priest in the words of St Austen the anci­ent Father:Aug. contr. Epist Ma­nich c. 5. & Athanas. Tom 2 in Serm. contr. eos qui iu­bent simplicitèr cre­dere quae ipsi dicunt. Vsque adeò me stultum putas &c. Doest thou thinke mee such a foole, without reason rendred, I should beleeue what you would haue mee, and what you dislike, I should not beleeue? Shall I beleeue with­out iudgement or reason? shall [Page 590] I not inquire, nor consider, what is, what may bee, what is profi­table, what is decent, what ac­ceptable to God, what sutable to Nature, what agreeable to Truth?

Since then no humane au­thoritie can bee the Rule of faith, since there can bee no certaintie, no infallibilitie foūd in any particular Priest or Bishops, (for particular men may erre,) I will con­clude with that safe and in­fallible rule which St. Chry­sostome gaue to the Christi­ans of his time: Let vs not haue the opinions of many, but let vs, search the things them­selues: for if it bee not absurd for vs, not to beleeue and giue credit to others in receiuing of moneys; but that we will reckon [Page 591] and tell it after them; why doe wee, in matters of greater mo­ment, simply and in good faith follow the opinions of other men, especially, seeing wee haue the most exact ballance, square and rule of diuine Scriptures for the auouching of any authoritie. Obsecro et oro vos om­nes vt re­linqua tis quidnā huic vel illi vi­deatur, d [...] (que) his à Scrip­turis haec omnia in quirite. Chrys. Homil. 13. in 2. C. l. I request therefore, and beseech you all, to leaue & forsake what seemeth good to this or that (par­ticular) man, and of these mat­ters search yee all things by the Scriptures. And thus brief­ly I proceed from the do­ctrine of Papal Infallibility, vnto the grand point of the Visibility of the Church.

SECT. XXIII. Eminent and perpetuall Visibi­litie is no certaine Note of the true Church, but the con­trary rather, as is prooued by Instances from Adam to Christ.

THe Materials which hitherto haue beene brought, haue beene imployed onely to the lay­ing the foundation of the Church, wherin I must con­fesse I haue been somewhat long, and yet not without reason: for wee all know, that a good foundation be­ing once layd, the whole frame stands the more sure. [Page 593] Now as Foundations are not verie conspicuous till the building be reared high­er: so likewise in succee­ding Ages, when the whole building was coupled together, and became a glorious Temple in the Lord: yet, eminent and perpetuall Visibilitie was no sure Note of the true Church, as shall appeare both by particular instan­ces, from the time of Adam to the comming of Christ, as also by the testimonies of learned Romanists, who in part were witnesses of a latencie and obscuritie in their owne Church.

I speake not this to de­cline the Visibilitie of the Church; for their own Io­achim Abbot above (400) [Page 594] yeeres since tells vs,Ann. 1195. Ioach. Ab­bot in Reu. p. 2. that The whole Congregation of Saints shall bee hidden, for so shall the Elect of God being wise, be wise vnto themselues: so that they shall not presume, to practise openly, because that darkenesse shall prevaile: not that they shall leaue to animate and exhort the faithfull in secret, but because they dare not aduenture to preach Publique by: And Bonauenture ano­ther Schooleman, who li­ued in the Age following,Ann. 1260. giues the reason how such obscuritie may befall the true Church, insomuch as it can hardly bee discerned by the true members a­mongst themselues.Bonauent lib. 1. Dist. 1 The Church (saith hee) may bee hindred from our sight, three [Page 595] manner of wayes; First, Propter defectum organi, for want of a fit organ, if the eyes of our bodie, or minde, be wanting: Secondly, Propter defectum voluntatis, for want of will; when our affecti­ons are so depriued, that we will not see it, though it bee visible: Thirdly, Propter defectū lu­minis, for want of light: So in the time of Persecution, and Ar­rianisme it did not then visibly appeare. Now if our Ad­uersaries would reflect up­on themselues, and examine their owne thoughts, they should find that either their affections are wandring, or their will wanting, or their opinions forestalled, or else it would proue no such hard matter for them [Page 596] to discouer an ouersprea­ding Schisme in their owne Church, with a long and grieuous Persecution in ours, which caused this obscuritie. This did Gre­gorie de Valentia well per­ceiue, and thereupon he ad­uised his Proselytes to bee wary and quick sighted,Diligenter animaduer­ti debet, non sic accipien­dū esse quod dicimꝰ, Ec­clesiam esse semper con­spicuā, quasi velimus eā omni tem­pore dignos­ci posse aequè facilè. No­uimus enim &c. Greg. de Val An­not fid. lib. 6. cap 4. in discouering and finding out the true Church: For (saith hee) when we say the Church is alwaies conspicuous, this must not bee taken, as though wee thought this might at e­very season be alike easily dis­cerned, for wee knowe that sometimes it is tossed with the waues of Errors, Schismes, and Persecutions; that to such as are vnskilfull, and doe not discreetly weigh the cir­cumstances [Page 597] of things & times, it shall bee very hard to bee knowne. That this doctrine may the better appeare, let vs looke backe to the first Ages, and wee shall see in what state the Church began, and how it continu­ed in changes and altera­tions, and became more and lesse visible in all A­ges, till the dayes of Christ and his Apostles.

Before the Law we finde in Adam with whom the Church began, that being in Paradise full of the bles­sings of God, and hauing a Freewill to all good, lost at once both himselfe and it: And as the power of his will, and the faculties of his Vnderstanding, were ecclip­sed [Page 598] by his fall,Aliquando in solo Abel Ecclesia e­rat et ex­pugnatꝰ est [...] fratrema lo et perdito Cain, [...]li quando in solo Henoch Ecclesia e­rat, et trās­latus est ab iniquis: a­liquando in sola domo Noē ecclesia erat, et per­tulit omnes qui diluuio perierunt, et sola arca natauit in stuctibus & euasit ad ficcumi aliquādo in so­lo Abrahā ecclesia erat es quanto pertulit ab iniquis, no­uimꝰ in solo filio fratris eius Loth et in domo eius in Sodomis Ecclesia e­rat, et per tulit Sodo­morum in [...] ­quitates. August. in Psal. 128. in not re­garding the voice of God, So did his fall foretell, that the best Churces in their most flourishing State, had a possibilitie of falling into darkenesse and obscuritie, if they neglected the Word of GOD. Now we must knowe, as this number was small at the beginning, so it was subiect to Persecution: The Church (saith Austen) was sometimes onely in Abel, and he was slaine by his wicked brother Kayne; sometimes it was solely in Henoch, and hee was translated from the vn­godly; sometimes it was in the sole house of Noah, and hee swomme in the waues; sometimes in Abraham, and his family, and he suffered of [Page 599] the wicked; sometimes it remai­ned in sole Lot and his house, and he was vexed by the So­domites.

Againe, the Church was vnder a cloud when Tobias went alone to Hierusalem and serued God, and all the rest worshipped the Calfe in Nepthali. The Church doubtles was vn­der a cloud in the time of Achas & Manasses, 2 Chron. 34 31. when those Kings made the Temple to bee shut vp, when Vrias the High Priest placed a a Pagan Altar in the Tem­ple. The Church doubtles was vnder a cloud when the good King Iosias called for a Reformation, 2 Chron. 29 6, 7. and made a couenant to performe the words which were found in [Page 600] the House of the Lord, so that there was many times a cloud of errors that dark­ned the true Church, when there wanted a cloud of wit­nesses to testifie her truth.

In the kingdome of Isra­el vnder Ahab, 1. Kings 21. the greatest number were Idolaters. In Ieremies time the Priests and Prophets,Ierem. 7.4. which were the chiefe in authoritie, were false teachers, & yet (like the Romanists in these dayes) they cryed out, The Temple of the Lord, the Temple of the Lord. 1 Kings 19.14. In the time of Elias, there was a generall Apo­stacie in the Church of Is­rael, insomuch that hee be­ing a Prophet could not dis­cerne it: so that a visible and illustrious Church may [Page 601] appeare to bee the true Church, when shee beareth but the visor, and title of a true Church, & the Church of God may so lie hid, that the principall members, yea and eminent Pastors them­selues may bee ignorant where to finde it: for God hath not tied his Church to a visible company, that are known to all to be true pro­fessors at all times, neither hath hee commanded a Re­gister to bee kept of their names, that hee might call the Church after their names: for if any should call for the names of professors in all a­ges; nay, if any one should demand but the name of any one of those seuen thousand which neuer bowed to Baal, [Page 602] and were vnknowne to the Prophet himselfe, it would seeme a mysterie vnsearch­able, and a man past finding out.

Neither was this backe­sliding, or falling away in the Church caused for want of Gods promises, for they were gracious & far excee­ding those promises to the Church of Rome. The Pro­phet tells vs, that the glorie of God did sit between the Cherubins in the Sanctuarie, and God had promised that there should be his seat, and yet the Priests did corrupt it with superstition, & God left the place without any Holinesse. Hee extends his promises further: I will walke (saith he) in the midst [Page 603] of you, I will haue my Ta­bernacle amongst you for euer; my name shall bee in Hierusalem, I haue sanctifi­ed it that my name may be there for euer: yet of this Church, to which so many promises were annexed, the Prophet complaines:Esay 56.10, 11. The watchmen are become blinde, they do no good, they are dumbe dogs, they are shopheards that cannot vnderstand. Now as you see the Extent and pro­mises of his Church were large, so you must know, they were all alwayes anne­xed to a condition: If you be my people, if you serue mee, if you walk in my commande­ments, if you aske counsell at my mouth; agreeable to the answer of the Prophet [Page 604] Osea: Osea 4.6. Because thou hast reie­cted knowledge, I will reiect thee, that thou shalt be no Priest to mee; seeing thou hast forgot­ten the Law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

Now as you haue heard the Law was perished from the Priests, and Counsell frō the Ancients, (as if there had been a second deluge of People and Pastors:) so now the earth shall bring foorth her increase, that is, (as Hie­rom expounds it) the blessed Virgin, which comes of the earth, shall bring foorth the blessed fruit of her sanctifi­ed wombe, that what was lost by the first Adam, might bee repaired by the second: and surely it was high time to rectifie the ancient Do­ctrine; [Page 605] (for the leauen of the Pharises had almost sowred the whole lumpe:) neither doth Christ deferre the time by reason of his minoritie: for at 12 yeeres old hee dis­puteth with the great Rab­bies in their Synagogues; but obserue what entertain­ment they gaue him: Hee calleth for a reformation of life and doctrine: they re­plyed, he would destroy the Temple; he vrgeth and lay­eth open to them the Scrip­tures; they plead their owne Traditions; he discouers & shewes vnto them their false glosses; they answer, he had a Deuill: hee preached to them of the kingdome of heauen, they accuse him for speaking against the Maie­stie [Page 606] of Caesar: yet this Church of Hierusalem, if you regard Antiquitie, they were des­cended from Abraham; if Calling, they were Priests and Scribes; if Place, their Temple was the LORDS House; if Councels, they had solemne Assemblies and meetings: but if I should demand, where or in whom was the true Church before Christs comming, (as our aduersaries question ours before Luthers) they may answere, the Iewes had a visible Church in regard of Gods promises;Simeon. Anna. Ioseph and Mary. Zachary & Elizabeth. but I dare promise for them, they can giue vs the names of a very small number.

Compare then the church of Hierusalem, & the Church [Page 607] of Rome together; the Church of Hierusalem had her Priests, and Caiphas the High Priest, and Sacrifices, and Councells, and a Tem­ple, and Traditions, and Mo­ses Chaire, and the Oracles of God: The Church of Rome hath her Priests, her Sacrifice of the Masse, her Caiphas, the Pope that is guided by the Spirit of prophecie; shee hath her Temple, Traditions, and Pe­ters Chaire; and last of all, (because it is least with her in request) she hath the Go­spel of Christ. Now when we cal vpon the Church for a reformation of doctrine, they answer, Their Church is Catholike, & cannot erre: wee lay before them the [Page 608] word of God for a Rule to examine their Doctrine: they answere, the Word is not sufficient without the helpe of their Traditions: wee shew them their false glosses in Exposition of the Scriptures, they answere, that it is the right of their Church to iudge of the true sense of the Scriptures. But if we shall demand of them where, or by whom all their twelue new Articles, publi­shed within the memorie of man (by Pope Pius the 4,) were receiued and beleeued as Articles of Faith before the Councell of Trent, I am more then confident, they shall not find so many pro­fessors of that Faith and do­ctrine at Luthers comming, [Page 609] as there were true beleeuers in the Church of Hierusa­lem at Christs comming. And for the better manife­station of this Tenet, I will beginne from the time of Christ and his Apostles, and briefly relate the courses, and changes, the Visibilitie and obscurity, the alteration and long wished for Refor­mation of the Roman Faith and Doctrine in all ages, till the dayes of Luther.

SECT. XXIIII. The latencie and obscuritie of the true Church, is prooued by pregnant testimonies of such who complained of cor­ruptions and abuses, and withall, desired a Reformati­on in all ages, from the time of Christ and his Apostles, to the dayes of Luther.

2 Thess. 2.7IN the First age, the A­postle St. Paul giues vs to vnderstand, that the Mysterie of iniquitie began to worke. And St. Iohn tells vs of dangerous Heretiques in his time,1 Iob. 2.19. saying, They went out from vs, but they were not of vs. Now, as Iniquitie [Page 611] did closely worke, so like­wise Errour began to spread it selfe; insomuch, as both those who were called, and those also who were cho­sen by Christ, did erre grieuously, both in manners and doctrine; and through their fall, followed a laten­cie and obscuritie in the true Church. Iudas erred in Manners being called, when through couetounes hee betraied Christ: The Apostles erred in Manners, being chosen, whē they for­sooke Christ. Nay more, the Elect Apostles erred in Doctrine, when they thought the Kingdome of Christ to be earthly and not heauenly:Actes 1.6. for When they were come together they asked of [Page 612] him, saying, Lord wilt thou at this time restore againe the Kingdome to Israel? They did Imagine his Kingdome to bee like the Kingdomes of this world, presently to come, not after to be looked for; proper to Israel, not common to all Nations by vertue of the Promises: Nay more, when they had receiued the Holy Ghost in a greater measure from hea­uen, Peter (saith the Text) went not the right way to the Gospell; Galat. 2 14. Iohn would haue worshiped an Angell once or twice:Reu. 19.10. & 22.8. The Apostles and Brethren who were in Iudea, thought that the Word of God was not to be Preached to the Gentiles.Acts 11.2. These Ex­amples doe sufficienty wit­nesse, [Page 613] that the Elect and Chosen of God may take a fall, but fall away they cannot, and their errors in doctrine and manners fore­tell a possibilitie of failing, and consequently, an ob­scuritie in the true Church: and heereupon their owne Panormitan concludes:Possibile est quod vera fides rema­ner [...]t in v­no solo, at (que) ita verū est dicere quod fides non de­ficit in Ec­clesia. Hoc patuit post passionem Christi, n [...]m fides remā ­serat tantū in beata vir­gine. Extr. do Elect. Significast. Alb. It is possible that the faith of Christ may remaine in one alone, and so it is true to say, Faith failed not in the Church, this thing appeared in Christs passion, for then Faith remained only in the blessed Virgin: And with him consenteth Nicholaus Clemangis, The Church (saith he) may by Gods grac [...] maine in a woman alone, as it is repor­ted to haue remained in the blessed Virgin, at the time of [Page 614] Christs Passion. In s [...]la po­test mulier­cula per gratiā manere Ecclesia, si­cut in sola Virgine tē ­pore passio­nis mansiffe fertur. Clemang. super Mat. generalis Concil. Thus in the Colledge of Christ there were but twelue, and scarce twelue; in the Councell a­mong the Iewes, there was but one Iosepth of Arimathea, that stood for Christ: there was but one Gamaliel in the Councell of the Pharises that stood for the Apostles: So that the number of true beleeuers was but small, which did visibly appeare, euen at that time when the Church was most glorious, and therefore Eminent and perpetuall visibility is no certaine Note of the true Church.

Ann. 100. to 200.In t [...] second Age, Ege­sippus tels vs,Quod ad ea usque tem­pora Eccle­sia pura & incorrupta permanse­rit Virgo in locis obsuris & caligi­nosis &c. Niceph. lib. 3. cap. 16. The Church re­mained a pure Virgine vnto Traians time, which was 110 [Page 615] yeeres after Christ: for (saith he) such as indeauored to cor­rupt the perfect Rule, and sound Preaching of the Word, if there were any such, did hide them­selues in secret and obscure pla­ces: but after the sacred com­pany of the Apostles was come to an end, and that the genera­tion was wholly spent, which by speciall fauour had heard with their eares the heauenly wise­dome of the Sonne of God, then the conspiracie of detestable er­rour, through the deceit of such as deliuered strange doctrine, tooke rooting; and because that none of the Apostles suruiued, they published boldly with all might possible, the doctrine of falsehood, and impugned the manifest and knowne truth.

In the third Age,Ann 200. to 300. there [Page 616] arose a great contention a­bout the keeping of Easter, when as Victor Bishop of Rome went about to Ex­communicate all the Chur­ches of Asia, from their Cō ­munion, as not sauouring a­right. And at this time the heresie of Artemon, (who af­firmed Christ to be a meere man) daily increased. Those heretikes (saith Eusebius) were many, Euseb. lib. 5 ca. 25. and they corrupted the holy and ancient Scriptures, without any reuerence; they re­iected the Canon of the ancient Faith, they were ignorant of Christ, not searching what the holy Scriptures affirmed. And St. Cyprian makes a grieuous complaint of the Apostacie in his time from the Chri­stian Faith, as appeares by [Page 617] diuers passages in his booke De Lapsis.

In the fourth Age,Ann. 300. to 400. Euse­bius testifies as an eye wit­nesse: Wee saw the Church o­uerwhelmed to the ground, Sacras aedes precibus di­catas è sub­limi in so­lum funda­mentis ipsis conquassatis deiectas, di­uinas & sanctas Scripturas medio foro in rogum impositas, Ecclesia­rum Pa­stores hos in latebras, hic illic se cum igno­minia ab­dentei, il­los non si­ne dedecore prehensos et ab hosti bus ludibrio expositos, oculis no­stris aspexi­mus &c. Euseb. lib. 8. cap. 2. yea the very foundations themselues digged vp, the holy and sacred Scriptures burnt to ashes in the open Market place, the Pastors of Churches, some shamefully hid themselues here and there, some others were ignominiously taken and derided of their ene­mies; and thus it was comman­ded by Proclamation, by the Emperour Dioclesian, the Churches should be razed to the ground, the holy Scriptures should bee abolished, and the Pastors throughout all Parishes should bee imprisoned. Heere we see the Church was dri­uen [Page 618] into straights and cor­ners, till the time of Con­stantine the Great, the first Christian Emperour, about 300 yeeres after Christ; but you shall likewise ob­serue, that no sooner did this good Emperour appeare as an eminent part of the visible Church, but Ar­rius the grand Heretique so­wed his wicked Heresies,Ingemuit totus orbis et Arrianū se esse mi­ratus est. Hier ad­uers Luci­ferium. which Like a Canker so spread it selfe, that the Shippe of the Church (saith Hierom) was almost suncke, and the whole world groaned and wondred at it selfe, that it was become Arrian. And with this ho­ly Father agreeth the complaint of Vincencius Lyrinen­sis, Vincent. Lyrin c 6. The poyson of the Arrians did not infect a little portion, [Page 619] but in a manner the whole world; insomuch that all the Latine Bishops, partly by force, and partly by cunning were in­trapped, and had a kind of myst cast before their eyes. And when the Arrians did vaunt of the multitude of belee­uers, as if Amplitude and Splendor had been certaine markes of the true Church. Gregorie Nazianzene makes this Quaere: [...]. Nazian. in Orat 11. ad Arrianos. Where are those men which define the Church by a multitude, and despise the little flocke? And as touch­ing the perpetuall and emi­nent visibility of the church, it was so farre from his knowledge, that hee profes­seth, by reason of the scar­citie of true beleeuers in his Church, They were of­ten [Page 620] termed the Arke of Noah, Persaepe Ar­ca Neê vo­cati sumus, vt qui soli orbis vni­uersi diluvium effugis­semus. Greg Nazian. o­rat. 12. as those who onely were esca­ped drowning in the flood. In like manner, when Constan­tius an Arrian Emperor, had obiected the multitude of his Arrian side, and the pau­citie of Catholike Profes­sors on the other, Pope Li­berius returneth the Empe­rour this answere:Non referre numerū esse magnū aut paruum. Nam &c. Salm tract. 23. in verba Luc. It mat­tereth not whether the true pro­fessors be more or fewer, for the Church of the Iewes was once reduced to the number of three. Now there is no man will deny, but there were many excellent and famous lights of the Church in this Age, yet by reason of Persecuti­ons, it was so much darke­ned and obscured, that the holy Father Athanasius (who [Page 621] had a fellow-feeling of the persecuted members in the Church) puts the Question and resolues it.Quae nunc Ecclesia li­bere ado­rat? siquidē si pia est, pe­riculosa subiacet, si alicubi pii et Christi studiosi —vt magnus ille Propheta E­lias abscon­duntur. A­than ad so­lit. vitā a­gentes. What Church doth now freely serue Christ? For if it be godly, it is exposed to dangers, if there be in many places, faithfull seruants of Christ, (as in all places there be many) they, like the great Prophet Elias, are secret and hide themselues in dennes and caues of the earth, or wandring vp and downe remaine in the wildernesse. And without doubt, the latencie and ob­scuritie of the true Church was such,Mōtes mihi et sylua, et lacꝰ, et car­ceres, et vo­ragines sūt tutiores. Hilla [...]. cont. Auxent. that St. Hillarie professeth, at that time it was not to bee sought in houses, I rather reckon (saith hee) hills, and woods, and pri­sons, to bee places of more safe­tie, [Page 622] for in those, either the Pro­phets abiding of their owne ac­cord, or forced thither by vio­lence, prophesie by the Spirit of God. And from these few instances, it may plainely appeare, that eminent and perpetuall Visibilitie is no sure and certaine Caracter of the true Church.

Ann. 400. to 500.In the fift Age, St. Austen tels, the Church was like a Citie vpon a Hill, Ipsa est e­nim ouis quae perie­rat, ipse Pa­stor mons est, ouis ergò in humeris eius ciuitas est in mōte. Aug Serm. de Tempo­re. 218. but that Ci­tie vpon the hill (saith he) was the sheepe which was lost and went astray: and the shepheard is the hill, and the Sheepe vpon his shoulders, is the Citie vpon the hill. And thus the true mēbers of the Church may wander like stray sheepe, till the Shepheard finde them, and bring them home to [Page 623] the company of the faith­full. Moreouer, he that ter­med the Church, a Citie vp­on a hill, in his time well vnderstood, that it was not visible at all times, that is to say, in a great mist, or in the night time: yea, on the con­trary he tels vs,Epist. ad Vincent Epist. 80. ad Hesych. Enarrt. in Psal. 10. De Bapt. cōt. Donat. lib. 6. c 4. The Church shalbe sometimes obscured, and the cloudes of offence may sha­dow it. Somtimes it shall not ap­peare, by reason of the vnmea­surable rage of vngodly perse­cutors. Sometimes, it is like the Moone, and may bee hidde, yea so obscured, that the mem­bers thereof shall not know one an other. And howsoeuer in St Austens time the Church was very glorious and flou­rishing, yet (vnder correcti­on of better iudgements) I [Page 624] doe conceiue he did extoll the visibility of the Church, because the Donatists at that time did appropriate the Church wholly to their own Faction, excluding all other Churches but their owne in the South of Africke. For the trueth is, by reason of the multitude of Heretikes at that time preuailing, it could not chuse but bee much darkened and obscu­red, when as himselfe makes mention of fourescore and eight seuerall heresies in the Church.Aug. de V­nit. Eccles. ca. 2. & 16. Besides, both Au­sten and Chrysostome, who were liuing in this age, tell vs, That the Heretikes did so abound in multitude, and they had such outward marks of the trueth in Tra­ditions, [Page 625] in Fathers, in Coun­cels, in Miracles, vnder the very name and Title of the Catholike Church, in outward shew and semblance of the true Church, that there was no way left to find the true Church,Nisi tantū ­modo per Scripturas. Chrys. Ho­mil. 24. but only by the Scrip­tures. And Saint Chrysostom alluding to the desolation in the Temple in the latter dayes, aduiseth his profe­lytes,Idem in 1. Cor. Hom. 36. to flie to the mountaines of the Scriptures. And as tou­ching the Discipline of the Church, hee complaines, that Shee was like a woman which had quite lost her mode­stie, and did beare certaine bad­ges and tokens of her former felicitie; and being vtterly be­reft of her treasure, kept the emptie caskets and boxes of the [Page 626] precious things shee had before. And although in this age the Church (since the Apo­stles time) was most flouri­shing, yet it was not so con­spicuous as any earthly King­dome, Bell de Ec­cles. lib 3. cap. 13. (as Bellarmine would haue it:) for at this time St. Hierome likewise complai­ned of an Hereticall tempest rising in the countries of the East, Haretica in his prouin­ciis exorta tempestas nauē plenā blasphemi­arū intulit portui — et Romanae fi­d [...]i purissi­mum fontē coeno luīosa promiscuêre vestigiae. Hier. ad Princip. Marc. Epit. Tom. 1. carried a ship of blasphe­mies into the hauen of Rome,— and vncleane feet did mingle with mud, the most pure foun­taine of the Roman faith: yea he tels vs further, The faith of the Apostles was violated in most things, the Priests and people were drawne into the same consent, and the Bishop of Rome was abused by simplici­tie, and Marcella, a poore [Page 627] widdow did first openly resist it. And this may briefly serue, to shew that in the first and best ages, eminent and per­petuall Visibilitie was no sure and certaine note of the true Church.

In the sixt Age,Ann. 500. to 600. Pope Vi­gilius secretly fauoured Seue­rus and Anthemius, two He­retiques, who refused the faith established in the great Councell of Chalcedon. Li­beratus, who was liuing at the same time, giues vs to vnderstand of his writing to the Heretikes in this ma­ner: I signifie to you, Liberati Breuiarium cap. 22. that I haue held, and doe hold the ve­ry same faith which you also do hold. No man must know that I write these things vnto you: but your wisedome must thinke [Page 628] it best, to haue mee in suspition before all others, that I may with more ease, worke and bring that to passe which I haue be­gun. Pontificale in vita Vi­gilij. This Vigilius (if wee may beleeue their owne Pontifical) was a false witnes a­gainst his predecessor Pope Syl­uerius; he sought vndue means to remooue him, and to place himselfe; he kept him in prison, and sterued him for hunger, he gaue a great summe of money to procure the Popedome to himselfe. Hee killed his owne Notary, he killed a young man, being a widowes sonne; and of these and other crimes be­ing accused before the Em­perour, hee caused him to bee drawne by the necke round a­bout the Citie of Constantino­ple, and cast into prison, where [Page 629] hee was fed with bread and water. And hence we may obserue, that if the Pope of Rome bee the Virtuall and totall Church, if he be that Rule of Faith, vpon whose infallibilitie the whole Christian world must relie in matters of beliefe, (as the Church of Rome teacheth) then certainly the Church at this time was driuen into great straights, when as the Head of the Church, or ra­ther the totall Church fell into dangerous heresie; and consequently, eminent and perpetuall Visibilitie can be no sure Note of the true Church. But as it was right­ly obserued by Isidorus Plea­sitota, the declination of the true Church from the A­postles [Page 630] time, was caused through the distemperature of the Head; and thereupon hee makes this ingenuous confession:Isid. lib. 3. Ep. 408. In the dayes of the Apostles, and afterwards, when the Church flourished, and la­boured of no disease, the diuine Graces of God went as it were in a ring round about it: — but afterward it grew diseased, and was troubled with faction, then all those things fled away, not through his carelesnesse and negligence that first inriched her, but through their naugh­tinesse that gouerned not things as they should haue done.

Ann. 600. to 700.In the seuenth Age, Io­hannes de Molinis tells vs,In Speculo Carmelit. cap 6. from the time of Heraclius the Emperor, after the yeere 600, the day inclined to­wards [Page 631] the euening, and the Church hauing been in an ecclipse set in the West, and became almost deficient. And Gregorie himselfe com­plaines,Greg. Ep. 4. l. 1. Iud. 9. that the Ship of the Church was in danger of ship­wracke. Nay more;Diabolꝰ ita valdè in qui busdam ne­cessaris Ec­clesiae mem­bris dentes figit — vt omne (quod absit) citius ouile dila­niet. Greg. lib. 4. Ep 36 The De­vill (saith he) so strongly fast­neth his teeth in the necessarie members of the Church, that vnlesse by Gods grace the pro­uident company of Bishops ioyne together, hee will soone destroy the whole flock of Christ. Flens dico, gemens denuntio, I speake it with teares, Quia cum Sacerdotis ordo intus cecidit, fo­ris diu sta­re non po­tuit. I tell it with sighs of heart, seeing the Order of Priesthood is fallen within, it cannot now stand long without. The chiefe reason of this complaint was cau­sed by Iohn Bishop of Con­stantinople, [Page 632] who at this time assumed the Title of Vniuer­sall Bishop; and as new Lords are commonly said to make new Lawes, so from and af­ter this time, many alterati­ons succeeded in Faith and Manners, both in Head and members of the same house.

Thus wee haue heard in the first age, The mysterie of iniquitie began to worke: In the second, there was a con­spiracie against the Trueth: In the third, Heretikes arose and assaulted her: In the fourth, the Church was darkened by the multitude of Heresies: In the fift, she was most flourishing in her members, but knowne only by the Scriptures: In the sixt, the Head of the Church [Page 633] was diuided by heresie from the body: In the seuenth, there was a declination to­wards the West, and conse­quently there followed a darkenesse and obscuritie, more or lesse in succeeding ages.

Now as you haue heard complaints against heretikes and persecutors that inuaded the ancient Church in her first & best ages: so likewise you shall obserue, there fol­lowed corruptions and er­rours in Doctrine and Dis­cipline, whereby Obscuri­tie became the proper mark of the true Church almost in all ages, till the dayes of Luther.

In the eight Age, Paulus Diaconus calls to the Chri­stians [Page 634] of that time, to awake and listen vnto him: for, (saith he) You haue buried in contempt and obliuion the word of God, Wolph. Tom. 1.203. you haue made the Temple a denne of theeues, and instead of sweet melody, you re­sound blasphemies against God himselfe; and therefore verie shortly the vniuersall Catholike Cittie will fall to ground. And Venerable Bede calles to them of his time,Nec sine la­chrymis rem lachrymis dignam cō ­templētur quantū Ec­clesiae flatus ad petora quotidiè vel vt mitius dicā ad in­firmiora ge­rēda deuol uatur. Bed ii 4 in S [...]m cap. 2. p. 30 [...] to behold the lamentable estate of the Church: Neither (saith he) let them behold it without teares, which is worthy to bee lamented, in that it is growne worse and worse, or to speake more fauourably, it is at least fallen into great infirmities And Charles the Great makes this generall complaint tou­ching [Page 635] the doctrine and Do­ctors of the Church:Carolus Magnus de Imag. in Praefat. The Priests laying aside all sound and wholesome doctrine, and little regarding that of the A­postle, (If an Angell preach o­ther doctrine, let him be accur­sed) they transgresse the com­mandements of the Fathers, and bring into the Church such do­ctrine as was neuer knowne to Christ and his Apostles.

In the ninth Age, Ar­nulphus Bishop of Orleance, an eye witnesse of those times, professed openly: There is made a departure, not onely of Nations, but of Chur­ches, the Man of Sinne now be­gins to bee discouered, Religion is ouerthrowen, and the seruice of God is contemned by the chiefe Priests themselues: and [Page 636] that which is more, Rome it selfe, now almost left alone, is de­parted from her selfe.

Ann. 900. to 1000.In the tenth Age, Christ (saith Baronius) lay asleepe in the Ship of the Church; Bar. Tom 10. ann. 912 num. 8. & ann. 900. Sect 1. and which is worse, there was not any found amongst his disciples, who awaked our Lord, all of them being in a snorting sleepe. It was the age next to that, wherein the Deuill was let loose,Infaelix di­citur hoc saeculū ex­haustū ho­minibus in­genio et doctrinâ cla­ris, siue eti­am claris Princitibus et Pontifici­bus. Geneb. Chron. Vbr. 4. That vnhappy age (saith Genebrard) which was exhau­sted both of men for wit and learning, and of worthy Prin­ces and Bishops. In this time, saith Wernerus, Christian faith began much to decline from her first virilitie, when as in many Christian prouinces, neither the Sacraments, nor Ecclesiasticall Rites were obserued. And Ioa­chim [Page 637] Abbot, complaineth,Est et alia sicus quae malidictio­ne praeuar [...] ­cationis ex­arnit, Lati­na Ecclesia siue n [...]i­cula Petri. Morn. &c. that the Latin Church was an­other Fig tree dryed vp, which did beare nought else but tem­porall leaues, and bid her selfe vnder the Title of the Church, to the shame of the Pope and his Sea.

In the eleuenth Age,Ann. 1000. to 1100. Who will let me see the Church be­fore I dye (saith Bernard) as in the dayes of olde, Bernar in Cant. Serm 33. when the Apostles did cast foorth their Netts, not to take siluer and gold; but to take soules: There creepeth (saith hee) an ougly Rott, at this present, through the whole body of the Church, yea, the wound of the Church is inward, and past recouery. And a Canonized Saint of the Romish Church,Morn de Eccl p [...]2. Virgo [...] Mathilda. tells them of that Age, The [Page 638] Church of Rome which of long time did reuolt from Christ se­cretly, was neere revolting from him openly. And in the Raigne of Henry the first, Ann. 1100. inseratur. The Church of Leodium sends forth this complaint: In time past I was wont to In­terpret, Fulke in Rhem. Te­stam. p 892. that Peter by Baby­lon did signifie Rome, because at that time it was confused with Idolatrie and filthynesse, but now my sorrow doth inter­pret vnto mee, Pleri (que) omnes boni, iu­ [...]i, aperti, ingenu [...], simplices, tum imperiū An­tichristi coe­pisse quod ea quae Christꝰ seruator no fle [...] tot antè annos prae­cixerat, e­uenisse tē ­pore cerne­bant &c. Auent. de Tyrannide Pontificis. that Peter cal­ling the Church together in Ba­bylon, foresaw by the Spirit of Prophecie, that confusion of dissention wherwith the Church at this day is rent in peeces. And saith Sigebert, All good men and iust, and honest, and ingenious men, held that the Kingdome of Antichrist was [Page 639] then begunne, because they saw the accomplishment of those things which our Sauiour had so long time foretold.

In the twelfe Age,Ann. 1100. to 1200. Ho­norius of Authun in France openly cries out;Verte te ad ciues Babi­loniae et vi­de, veni h [...]c ad superci­lii montes vt cuncta possis cerne­re aed ficia damnatae ciuitatis — verte te ad Clerū et in uenies ibi Bestia ten­tortum Dei seruitiū negligūt, sacerdotium per inunditiam postuunt, po­pulum per simulationē seducunt, omnes Scripturas ad sa­l [...]tē perti­nentes ab dicant &c. Honor. Au­gust in Di­alog. de Prae­dest & lib. Arbitr. Mat. Paris in Hent. 3. Turne thee to the Citizens of Baby­lon, and see what they are, ascend to the toppe of the Moun­taine, from whence thou mayest behold all the buildings of that damned Citie: consider the prin­cipall persons there, and thou shalt find the Sea of the Beast: In the Cleargie thou shalt find the Beasts Tent, for they neglect the seruice of God, pollute his Priest­hood, seduce his people, reiect all the Scriptures which belong vn­to Saluation. And Mathew Paris describeth the state of the Church of England vn­der [Page 640] Gregory and Innocent: In those dayes Faith waxed cold, and scarsely seemed to sparkle, being almost brought to ashes, Religion is become base and vile, and the Daughter of Si­on is a bold faced Harlot with­out shame. He further com­plaines, that the Monkes and Fryars of that Age did wholly neglect the Preach­ing of Gods Word, and for that cause he pretends there was a deuised Epistle sent from Hell to the holy Fra­ternities,Math. Paris in Will Conquer. Wherein Sathan and all the company of Hell, did s nd thankes to the whole Ecclesiastical Order, that wher­as in nothing they were wanting to their owne pleasures, they suffered by their neglect of Preaching, such a number of [Page 641] soules vnder them to go to hell, Lat. abbots & Bishops. p. 383. as no Ages past had seene the like. And Robertus Gallus, re­puted a famous Preacher in those times, amongst cer­taine visions of his owne, shewes vs, That in those dayes there was scarse any bloud or life remaining in the members of the Church, when as the Doctrin which is the soule and life of the Church,Orabā flexis genibus ere­cta facie ad coelū iuxta Altare San­cti Iacobi Parisiis &c Robertus Gallus. was altered and decayed: I did pray (saith hee) on my knees, with my face towards heauen, neere to the Altar at St. Iames at Pa­ris, on the right hand, and I saw in the ayre before me the body of the onely high Priest, clad in white Silken robes, and his backe was towards the East with his hands lifted up to­wards [Page 642] the West, Morney. Myst. of Iniqu. pa. 401 or. 434. as Priests vsu­ally stand while they say Masse, I did not see his head, and be­holding wishly, whether he were altogether without a head or no, I saw his head leane, and withered, as if it had bene all of wood; and the Spirit of the Lord said, this signifieth the state of the Roman Church.

Ann. 1200. to 1300.In the thirteenth Age, Grosted Bishop of Lincolne, complained of many errors in the Church,Innocent. 4. in Math. Paris. in Henr. 3.844 & 847. & 848. and sought for a reformation, and for that cause, we may read (in Mathew Paris) the Pope re­solued to Excommunicate and accurse him: but this Bishop withstood the Popes Bulles, and for his courage in that good cause, was ter­med Romanorum malleus, the [Page 643] Hammer of the Roman Church; neither did hee oppose those abuses alone, but the Cardinalls at that time withstood the Pope in his behalfe, & affirmed, that the things wherewith hee charged the Pope, were most true, and thereupon they answered the Pope, it was not safe for him so to proceede, lest a tumult should follow, especially (say they) seeing it is knowne, there must bee a departure from vs, and a forsaking of the Roman See. Petrarch who well vn­derstood the Doctrine of those times, in his Latine Epistles which are full of wisdome and grauitie, tells them: Noui expertus, &c. [Page 644] I speake of my knowledge, Noui exper­tus vt nulla ibi pietas, nulla cha­ritas, nulla fides, nulla Dei reue­rentia. in the Pope and his followers there is neither Faith, godlinesse, nor Truth; the Popes Chaire is the Chaire of lying, that is, a defection, a reuolt, an apostacie of people which vnder the Stan­dard of Christ rebell against Christ, and fight for Satan, they esteeme the Gospell for a Fable, and the promises of the life to come for lyes. About the same time, Michael Ce­cenas Generall of the Order of Franciscans, affirming the different opinions of diffe­rent Members in the same Church,Mich Cece­nas contr. Tyrannid. Papae. proclaimeth, There were two Churches, the one of the wicked sort flourishing, in which the Pope raigned; the other, of godly and good men, and this Church he presecuted.

[Page 645]In the fourteenth Age,Ann. 1300. to 1400. Occham a learned Schoole­man makes this complaint: Alas the time, of which the blessed Apostle prophecied, when men will not suffer wholesome doctrine, &c. This Prophecie is altogether fulfilled in our dayes: for behold, there are ma­ny that peruert the holy Scrip­tures, deny the sayings of the holy Fathers, reiect the Canon of the Church, molest, persecute and bring into bondage, and without mercy torment and af­flict euen vnto death, them that defend the trueth: so that wee may rightly say of our times, Occham. procl. com. err. Iohan. 22. that which Daniel long since pronounced, Iniquitie is gone from Babylon, from the Elders and Iudges which seemed to go­uerne and rule the people: for [Page 646] many that should bee Pillars in the Church of God, and defend the trueth euen vnto blood, cast themselues headlong into the pit of Heresies.

Ann. 1400. to 1500.In the fifteenth Age, Gerson the Chancellour of Paris bids you open your eyes, Gers decla­rat defect. virorum. and see if the Houses of Nunnes be not Stewes of filthy Harlots, if the consecrated Monasteries be not Faires, Markets, and Innes; Cathedrall Churches, dennes of theeues, Priests vn­der pretence of mayds, keepe harlots: consider whether so great variety of pictures and I­mages be fit, and whether it oc­casion not Idolatrie in the sim­ple: looke vpon the number and varietie of religious Orders, the Canonizing of new Saints, though there bee too many al­ready, [Page 647] as Bridget of Swetia, Charles of Britain; the feasts of new Saints more religiously kept, then those of the blessed A­postles: enquire if there be not Apocryphall Scriptures, and prayers in processe of time, ey­ther of purpose, or of ignorance brought into the Church, to the great hurt of the Christian Faith: consider the diuersitie of opinions, as the conception of Marie, & sundry other things. Againe, in his Consolatory tract of Rectifying the Heart, amongst many other consi­derations, hee complaineth, There is intolerable superstiti­on in the worshipping of Saints, innumerable obseruations with­out all ground of reason, vaine credulitie, in beleeuing things concerning the Saints report in [Page 648] their vncertain Legend of their liues, superstitious opinions of obtaining pardon and remission of sinnes, by saying so many Pa­ter nosters in such a Church before such an Image, as if i [...] the Scriptures and authentical writings of holy men, there were not sufficient direction for all actes of Pietie and Deuotion, without these friuolous additi­tions: nay, which is worse, see if these obseruations in many coun­treys and kingdomes of the world, be not more vrged then the Lawes of God, euen as wee shall finde in the Decrees and Decretals, a Monke more se­uerely punished for going with­out his Cowle, then committing Adultery or Sacriledge, and more grieuously corrected in go­ing against one of the Popes [Page 649] Decrees, Idē de Di­rectione cordis Con­sid. 29. &c. then offending against the diuine precepts, and the Go­spell of Christ. This learned Author was Director of the Councell of Constance, and there complained of 75 ex­orbitant abuses and errours that were crept into the Ro­man Church, but found no amendment; nay more (saith hee) Wee must not looke for a Reformation in things that con­cerne Faith and Religion, or doctrine, or manners, except the Secular powers do seriously take it in hand. Experto crede,Experto crede, &c. Idem in Dial Apo­logetico. Beleeue me in what I say, I haue tryed it, dispute no more of it, speake not to deafnesse it selfe, thou shalt neuer bee heard. Lastly, when hee found there was little hope of re­ducing Religion to the for­mer [Page 650] purity of the Primitiue Church in Christs time, yet hee wished at least a resto­ring of the ancient Faith in the Fathers time;Ecclesia si non ad statū Christi et Apostolorū, saltem ad statum Syl­uestri resti tuenda. Gers. de Concil. Ge­ner. vnius obedientiae. In diebꝰ istis in ore cuius libet bonum fuit argu­mentū, te­nens tam de formâ quā materiâ, Hic est Fra­ter, ergo est mendax. Wals. Hist. Angl. in Rich. 2. p. 281. and (saith he) If the Church may not bee reformed according to the state [...] it was in the time of Christ and his Apostles, yet at least it should be brought to the state it was in the time of Syluester, which was about 300 yeeres after Christ. To let passe the obseruation of Tho. Walsing­ham, that in those dayes it was the common argument in euery mans mouth: He is a Fryar, Ergo a lyar. At this time Aluarez Pelagius wrote a Booke De Planctu Ecclesiae, of the Churches complaint, wherein hee tells vs, The Church which in her Primitiue [Page 651] state was adorned of her Spouse with many royall graces, Aluar. de planctu Ec­cles l. 2. art. 5. lit. Aleph. was clouded and ecclipsed with the blacke mists of ignorance, iniquitie and errour. In like manner,Et praser­tim qd ma­gis prodigi­osum est Pontificibus qui suas Traditione [...] diuinis lon­gè mandatis anteponunt Clem. de Corrup. Ec­cles. statu. ca. 14. & 26 Nicholaus Cleman­gis, Archdeacon of Baieux, wrote a Booke of the cor­rupt estate of the Church, wherein he complaines, The studie of Diuinitie was made a mocking stocke▪ and which was most monstrous for the Popes themselues, they preferred their own Traditions farre before the Cōmaundements of God. What doest thou thinke (saith he) of the prophecie of the Reuelati­on of St. Iohn: doest thou not thinke, that in some sort it be­longs to thee; thou art not grown so shamelesse as to deny it: con­sider therefore of it, and reade [Page 652] the damnation of the Great Whore, sitting vpon many wa­ters, there contemplate thy wor­thy actes, and thy future for­tune. Abusiones quo (que) Pa­ganica & superstitio­nes Diabo­lica tā mul­ta Romae qd diuinari be­nè non pos­sūt. Camer. de Squalo­ribus Rom. Eccles. p. 34. Cardinall Cameracen­sis wrote a Booke De Squa­loribus Romanae Ecclesiae, tou­ching the Deformitie of the Roman Church, (which book is to be seene in the Library at Westminster) wherein a­mongst many other com­plaints touching the Roman Church, he tells vs, That Pa­gan abuses, and diabolicall su­perstitions were so many at Rome, that they could not well bee imagined: C [...]mer. de Reform Ecclesiae. but (saith hee) as there were seuen thousand which neuer bowed to Baal, so it is to bee hoped, that there are some who desire the Churches Reformation: and according­ly [Page 653] it happened:Consil. Pi­san Sess. 20. for Pope A­lexander the Fift, in this age, and in the yeere 1411,Dixit quod ipse volebat vacare cir­ca reforma­tionē Eccle­sia &c. pro­mised solemnly to intend a Reformation; and for that purpose to assemble the most learned of all nations, and at the Councel of Senes, 1423, the proposition of Reformation was reuiued, but withall, it was adiourned de die in diem, and the Re­formation is not yet come.

In the sixteenth Age,Ann. 1500. to 1600. Hieronymus Sauanarola, a Do­minican by Profession, and for his Doctrine, and san­ctitie of life, termed a Prophet, was examined with tortures (saith Guicci­ardine) for inueying against the Cleargie, and Court of Rome, Vpon which examina­tion [Page 654] a Proces was publishd to this purpose, that he was not moued thereunto out of any euill in­tent, but this one thing he onely respected, that by his meanes a Generall Councell might be cal­led, wherein the corrupt man­ners of the Clergie might bee reformed, Guicciard. lib. 3. in fine and the degenerate state of the Roman Church (as farre foorth as was possible) might be reduced to the likenes of that it was in the Apostles time, or those that were neerest vnto them: and if hee could bring so great and so profitable a worke to effect, hee would thinke it a farre greater glory then to obtaine the Popedome it selfe. Comin. lib. 8. cap. 2. And Philip de Comi­nes giues vs likewise to vn­derstand, that hee told the French King, Charles the [Page 655] eight, He should haue great pro­sperity in his voyage into Italy, and that God would giue the sword into his hand; & all this, to the ende he should reforme the corrupt state of the Church, which if hee did not performe, he should returne home againe with dishonour, and God would reserue the honour of his worke to some other, and so (saith he) it fell out. This holy man thirsted for a Reformation, Hee complained against their Communion in one kinde, against Iustification by Works, against the ma­nifold Traditions and Con­stitutions of their Church, against the Popes Suprema­cie; and withall, proclai­med that the Roman Church taught not the Doctrine of [Page 656] Christ and his Apostles, and this was counted to him for Heresie, and for this hee was first hanged, and then burnt.

About this time, there was likewise written by Doctor Vicelius a Booke cal­led Methodus Concordiae Ec­clesiasticae: Vicelius. Wherein hee complaines also, of Traditions contrary to the word of God, hee calls for the translation of the Bible, and wished the Seruice were deliuered in a knowne tongue, hee complained of the worship of Images, of Prayers to Saints, of Pur­gatory as a doubtfull opini­on, he wished that Priests and people should rather marry, then liue loosely as [Page 657] they doe: and for these, and the like Articles, wher­in he desired a Reformati­on:Index. libr. prohib. de Sandoual. Madril. 1612. his Booke is condem­ned inter libros Prohibitos, a­mong the Books prohibited, & certainly the errors both in Doctrine and Discipline, were grown to that height, insomuch as Erasmus pro­fesseth, it was commonly argued in the Schooles: Whether the Pope might not ab­rogate that which was decreed in the Apostles Writings, Eras. Annot in 1. Tim. 1. Whe­ther hee might ordaine any thing contrary to the Doctrine of the Gospel, Whether he might create a new Article of the Creed, Whether hee had grea­ter power then Peter, or equall, Whether hee might command Angels, and take away Purga­tory [Page 656] [...] [Page 657] [...] [Page 658] altogether, Whether hee were a meere man, or God, or participat of both natures with Christ, Whether hee were more mercifull then Christ was, seeing it is not read that Christ called any man out of the paines of Purgatorie. Sixe hundred things (saith hee) of that sort were disputed and published in great volumes, by great Di­uines, especially famous for profession of Religion, and these things in the Schooles of Diui­nitie were seriously handled, And without doubt, abuses were growne so exorbitant in the Church; that Machi­auell Protested, The Kingdom of the Clergie had beene long since at an end, if the reputati­on and reuerence towards the pouertie of Fryars had not [Page 659] borne out the scandall of the Bishops and Prelates.

Amidst these manifold errors and corruptions in the Church, arose Martin Luther, and desired a Refor­mation, as his predecessors had done, and at that time things were in so bad estate (saith Guicciardine) that the blood of Christ was profaned, Guicciard. hist. lib. 13. the power of the keyes was made contemptible, and the redemp­tion of soules out of Purgatory, was set at a stake at dice, by the Pardon sellers, to be played for. This was so notorious, and visible to the world, that by the testimony of their own Historian, there were that yeere many meetings at Rome, to consult what was best to be done. The more [Page 660] wise and moderate sort wi­shed the Pope to reforme things apparantly amisse, and not to prosecute Luther▪ This reformation was long before wished for: (as wee see by the complainants in their own Church,) neither did Luther (as some pretend) oppose the errours of the Roman Church out of any prepensed malice:Tem. 7. Wittemb. 22. for Wee plainly and expressedly professe (saith hee) as our Bookes doe witnesse, that if they would not constraine vs to Articles openly impious and blasphemous, wee would defend them in other things.

Nec prodiit solus Luthe­rꝰ &c. Alp. à Castre ep. Nuncup. ad Phil 2 Hisp. Regem. Neither came Luther alone (saith Alphonsus) such is the vnhappinesse of this age, but garded with a great troope of [Page 661] Heretikes, who seemed to looke for him, that afterwards they might fight vnder his banner: for presently Philip Melan­cthon, Faber, Capeto, Lam­bertus, Conradus, Pellican, Andreas, Osiander, Martin Bucer, entred their names in his Booke, and many other in processe of time, in great num­bers, inserted themselues into his family. And as it is obser­ued by their learned Cassan­der, the Church Doctrine and discipline was so farre out of order at his cōming, and before, that many lear­ned Writers published and declared their long wished for Reformation of the Church.

Thus briefly in the Apo­stles times you haue seene [Page 662] the glorious rising of the Sunne; in the ages follow­ing, the Sunne at highest: from after 600 yeeres, you haue seene the Sun towards setting. In the first age shee was like the Moone in the first quarter, and daily in­creasing: in the ages fol­lowing shee was in the full, in succeeding ages shee was in the wane. In the first age, shee was like the Starre that appeared in the East, and guided the Wisemen; in the ages following, the Fathers were the fixed stars, and gaue light in the midst of Heresies; in the latter a­ges there were Stellae errati­cae, wandring starres that fell from heauen, such as St. Iohn speakes of, Priests and pro­fessors, [Page 663] that left their faith, (their first habitation.) And thus we see there is one glo­ry of the Sunne, another of the Moone, another of the Starres, and to all these the Church is rightly compa­red by Saint Austen: Ecclesia est Sol, Luna, et Stellae, quā ­do Sol ob scurabitur, et Luna nō dabit lucē, et Stellae ca­dent de coelo, Ecclesia non appare­bit impiis vltra modū saevientibꝰ. Aug. Ep. 80. The Church is the Sunne, and the Moone, and the Starres; and as the Sunne shalbe darkened, and the Moone not giue her light, and the starres shall fall from heauen: so the Church shall not appeare, by reason of persecuti­on, and worldly securitie: then the power of heauen shalbe mo­ued, and they that seeme to shine in grace, shall fall, and those that are most strong in faith, shall be troubled.

These things premised, wee may rightly inferre for [Page 664] a conclusion of this poynt, that there was alwayes a remnant of true beleeuers in the bosome of the Romane Church, who resisted the Papacie, and noted the abu­ses: neither were they igno­rant lay men, or an illitte­rate sort of Priests, but they were Bishops, & Cardinals, and learned Pastors, that complained of the latencie and obscuritie of the true Church: they longed for a Reformation in Doctrine, and Discipline, they wished that the true Religion might be restored to her first Inte­gritie, the Church to her ancient libertie, her Faith and Doctrine to the Primi­tiue sinceritie; and for this cause, a continuall voice and [Page 665] lamentation was made by many of her children, and shee would not be comfor­ted, because they were not such as shee first bred them. From these and the like te­stimonies, (who constantly and continually wished a Reformation in Faith and Manners) we may certainly conclude, that eminent and perpetuall Visibilitie is no certaine Note of the true Church.

I proceed in the next place, to shew that there was a kind of necessitie, for the latencie & obscuritie of the true Church, especially in the later ages, because it was foretold by Christ and his Apostles in the first Age.

SECT. XXV. The aforenamed corruptions, and most remarkable decli­nation of the Church of Rome in the later ages, was fore­told by Christ and his Apo­stles in the first Age.

AS the complainants haue made knowne vnto vs, that there was an Apostasie, a falling away from the trueth in the later ages, so likewise you shall obserue, that they told nothing of the defection in the Church, which was not foretold by Christ and his Apostles, at that time, when the Mysterie of Iniquitie be­gan [Page 667] to worke; whereby you shall see, the one foretels, the other answers; the Apostles spake of errours and here­sies that were to come; the complainants tell you of er­rours and heresies, that in their dayes were come, vt impleretur, that whatsoeuer was foretold, might bee ac­complished. Now, that the Church of Rome hath fal­len frō her first puritie, that she is that Church at which the Prophecies long since pointed, and is now fallen, that the Pope is that Man of Sin, that sits in the Temple of God, which was forespo­ken, and that there is not, neither can bee any other Church to which the Pro­phesies can fitly agree, I wil [Page 668] compare the Romish Do­ctrine with those Prophe­sies, that her Tenets in the Church may appeare to the Euidence of things fore­told, and her doctrine may appeare to be the accompli­shed Reuelation of St. Iohns Reuelation.

First then let vs examine, (by way of question and an­swer) Whether the Church of God hath not fallen from her first sinceritie more or lesse in all ages.

How comes it to passe, that the Pope of Rome as­sumes to himselfe the ful­nes of power, and is aduan­ced aboue the kings of the earth (which are called Gods? I haue said you are Gods Psal. 82.6.) It was foretold: The Man of Sinne shall be reuealed, which is [Page 669] an Aduersary, [...] Thess. 2.3, 4. and is exalted a­boue all that is called God, and that is worshipped, so that he as God sitteth in the Temple of God, shewing himselfe that hee is God.

How comes it to passe, that there are such lying wonders, and false miracles wrought in the Church of Rome in these latter times? It was foretold:Math. 13 14 The sonne of perdition shalbe reuealed, whose comming is by the effectuall working of Satan, 2 Thess. 2 9 with all pow­er, and signes, & lying wonders.

How comes it to passe, that the Shepheard of the flocke is become the wolfe, and the chiefe Pastors teach peruerse doctrine, to make Proselytes of their owne? It was foretold: After my [Page 670] departure, Acts 20.29. grieuous wolues shall enter in among you, not sparing the flocke, and shall speake per­uerse things, to draw Disciples after them.

How comes it to passe, that the common people are giuen to beleeue fables, and reade Legends in stead of Scriptures? It was fore­told:2 Tim. 4.1. The time will come when they will not suffer holesome do­ctrine, but hauing their eares itching, shall after their owne lustes get them a heape of Tea­chers, and shall turne their eares from the trueth, and shall be gi­uen to Fables.

How comes it to passe, that the Church of Rome makes a distinctiō of meats, and forbids Marriage vnto Priests? It was foretold: In [Page 671] the later times some shall depart from the faith, 1 Tim. 4.1. and giue heed to the spirit of errour, and doctrine of Deuils, forbidding to mar­ry, and commanding to abstaine from meats.

How comes it to passe, that Indulgences and Par­dons are granted for mony, and made the treasure of the Church? It was foretold: There shall be false teachers a­mong [...] by whom the way of trueth shall be euill spoken of, 2 Pet. 2.3. and through couetousnesse shall with fained words make mer­chandise of you. Reu. 18.3.

How comes it to passe, that the number of the faith­full are so few, that at all times they cannot easily be discerned? It was foretold:Luk. 18.8. When the Sonne of man com­meth [Page 672] he shall not find faith vp­on the earth. 2 Thess. 2.3 Againe, The day shall not come except there bee a falling away first, and that man of Sinne be reuealed.

How comes it to passe, that the Deuil hath seduced the people in these latter a­ages? It was foretold: When a thousand yeeres are expired, Reuel 20.7. Satan shall bee loosed out of his prison, and shall goe to deceiue the people in the foure quarters of the earth.

How comes it to passe, that the Church of God, (which is tearmed a Citie vpon a hill) should bee ob­scured, and scarcely discer­ned in these latter ages? It was foretold:Reuel. 12.6. The woman fled into the wildernesse, where she had a place prepared of God, [Page 673] that they should feed her there.

How comes it to passe, that in the time of peace and securitie, errours were brought in by the enemy of the Gospel? It was foretold: While the husbandman slept, Math. 13.25. there came the enemie, and sow­ed the tares among the wheat: and the enemy was the Deuill.

Lastly, how comes it to passe, that we haue made a departure from the Church of Rome? Vt impleretur: that it might bee fulfilled, which was spoken,Reue. 18.4. Goe out of her my people, that yee be not partaker of her sinnes, and that ye receiue not of her plagues.

And certainly, all these sayings are come to passe, that not one jott of his word should passe not ful­filled, [Page 674] so that wee see not any things fulfilled in the Church of Rome, which were not foretold; neither was any thing foretold, but in the fulnesse of time shall bee ac­complished.

SECT. XXVI. The Conclusion of this Treatise, shewing in sundrie particu­lars, the certaintie and safetie of the Protestant, and the vncertaintie and danger of the Romish Way.

THe Philosopher tels vs, that Trueth and Falshood are neere neighbours, & the outmost postes of their doores are both alike; yet their way is contrary: for the one lea­deth vnto life, the other vn­to death. If we shal inquire further how to distinguish the house of Truth from the house of Errour, hee giues [Page 676] this Character. The doore of Falshood is painted and beautifully adorned, but the doore of Trueth is plaine and homely; and heereby it appeares, that many times men are deceiued, and mis­take the doore, and goe into Errours house, when they seeke the Trueth.

These two wayes I haue briefly suruayed, and distin­guished by two seuerall Ti­tles, The Safe way, an [...] The By way: The one (like the house of Trueth) is plaine and naked, and knowne on­ly by the Scriptures; and this is Via Tuta, a certaine & Safe way. The other (like the house of Falsehood) is adorned with specious shewes, and colourable pre­tences [Page 677] of Traditions, of Fa­thers, of Coūcels, of a pom­pous outside, of an eminent and glorious Church; and this is Via Deuia, an vncer­taine and By-way. Let vs looke back, and take a short view of the particulars.

We say the Scripture is a sure, euident, & perfect rule of Faith, and this is Via Tu­ta, a certaine and Safe way: They say the Scripture is ambiguous, obscure, and in­sufficient; and this is Via Deuia, an vncertaine and By-way.

Wee say, all Traditions concerning Faith and ma­ners, that can bee proued by Scriptures, are of equall au­thority with the Scriptures; and this is Via Tuta, a certaine [Page 678] and Safe way: They say, that diuers Traditions of faith and manners, wher­of there is no ground nor euidence in the Scriptures, are to bee receiued with e­quall reuerence, & religious respect, as the Scriptures themselues; and this is Via Deuia, an vncertaine and By-way.

Wee say, the vndoubted writings of the ancient Fa­thers are to be followed, ac­cording to their owne rule, so farre as they disagree no from the Scriptures; and this is Via Tuta, Bulla Pij 4 pro Forma Iuramenti &c. a certaine and Safe way: They say, and take an oath, to follow the iudge­ment of the Fathers, making no distinction of true and doubtful Authors, nor limi­ting [Page 679] their doctrine to the Scriptures; and this is Via Deuia, an vncertaine and By-way.

Wee say, that Generall Councells lawfully called, are of great authoritie, and singular vse in the Church, to determine Controuersies of Religion, but yet are sub­iect vnto errour; and this is Via Tuta, a certaine and Safe way: They say, that Gene­rall Councells called and confirmed by the Pope, are of an infallible auhoritie; and their Decrees are to be obeyed vnder a curse by all Christians; and this is Via Deuia, an vncertaine and By-way.

We say, the Church is a Congregation of Pastors, [Page 680] & people, wherin the word of God is truely preached, and the Sacraments rightly administred, and these are Essentiall marks of the true Church, and this is Via Tu­ta, a certaine and Safe way. They say, sometimes a Councell, sometimes a Pope and his Consistorie, sometimes the Pope alone, is the Church, & the marks of their Church are ampli­tude, and splendor, and mi­racles, &c. and this is Via Deuia, an vncertaine and By-way.

Wee say, the Rocke vpon which the Church is built, is Christ; and this is Via Tu­ta, a certaine and Safe way: They say, the Rocke is the Succession of Popes deri­ued [Page 681] from Peter; and this is Via Deuia, an vncertaine and By-way.

We say, the effect of the Sacraments depends vpon the Institution of Christ; and this is Via Tuta, a cer­taine and Safe way: They say, the efficacie of the Sa­craments depends vpon the Intention of the Priest; and this is Via Deuia, an vncer­taine and By-way.

We say, we ought to call vpon God by Christ, and that he is our Mediator who onely knowes the secrets of our hearts, and sits at the right hand of God, to make intercession for vs: And this is Via Tuta a certaine and Safe Way: They say, wee ought to vse [Page 682] Saints and Angels for Inter­cessors, when as they haue no commission from God to present our prayers, nor can know the secrets of the heart, nor haue wee any as­surance that they heare us at all, and this is Via Deuia, an Vncertaine and By-Way.

We say wee ought to a­dore Christs bodily pre­sence in Heauen where he sits at the right hand of the Father, according to the A­postles Creed: and this is Via Tuta, the certaine and Safe Way: They say, wee ought to adore Christs ve­ry body and bloud in the Pix, vnder the accidents of Bread and Wine, according to their Trent Creed, and this is Via Deuia, an vncer­taine [Page 683] and By-Way.

Lastly, we say that we are all vnprofitable seruants, and no man liuing can bee iu­stified in the sight of God by his owne merits; and therefore all that expect sal­uatiō must lay hold on Christ by a liuely faith, and wholly rely vpon his merits only; & this is Via Tuta, a certaine and Safe way: They say, that the Law of God may be fulfilled in this life, and that they can merit and per­forme workes of Superer­rogation, and accordingly they rely partly vpon their merits, & partly vpon their superabūdant satisfaction of Saints, for their Saluation, and this is Via Deuia, an vn­certaine and By-Way.

[Page 684]Thus I haue set before you Truth and Error, Light and darkenesse, the Safe Way, and the By-Way. Giue Me leaue therefore by way of Conclusion to adiure You in the sacred forme of words, sometimes vsed by the great Prophet,Deut. 30.19 and faithfull Seruant of God. I call Heauen and Earth to re­cord this day against you, that I haue set before you life and death, blessing and cursing, therefore chuse life, that both thou and thy seed may liue.


This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. Searching, reading, printing, or downloading EEBO-TCP texts is reserved for the authorized users of these project partner institutions. Permission must be granted for subsequent distribution, in print or electronically, of this EEBO-TCP Phase II text, in whole or in part.