AN ANSVVER To Mr. Tombes his Scepticall Examination OF INFANTS-BAPTISME:

Wherein Baptisme is declared to ingraft us into Christ, before any preparation: And the Covenant of the Gospel to Abraham and the Gentiles is proved to be the same, extended to the Gentiles children, as well as to Abrahams:

Together with the Reason, why Baptize children, is not so plainly set down in the Gospel, as Circumcise children, in the Law, and yet the Gospel more plain then the Law.

By William Hussey, Minister of Chislehurst in Kent.

HEBREWES 8.5, 6.

Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was ad­monished of God when he was about to make the Tabernacle: For see (saith he) that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount.

But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the Mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.

LONDON, Printed for Iohn Saywell, and are to be sold at his shop at the Sign of the Starre in Little Brittain, 1646.


Courteous Reader,

I Having read and seen the Labours of divers learned men that have undertaken the handling of this point; and seeing that this Doctrine of Anabaptists doth much spread, notwithstanding all the industry that hath been used by men of singular parts and piety; I did wonder that such a growing evill should spread and prevail with men that did pretend so much to prety; and finding that they cryed up the authority of the Scripture, as of men that did plead for baptisme of children, had nothing to countenance their doctrine, but humane authority, and set up mens inventions contrary to the Scriptures; when I saw that these An [...]ptists did so earnestly plead for the authority of Scriptures, and declare themselves so devoted to the rule of Gods Word, I had compassion on the affections of these men, willingly grant­ing that that was indeed the rule we ought all to be guided by, I did as unpar­tially sift, how truly and faithfully they had dealt in the applying them­selves to this sacred rule: I perceived, that they did rather steal away the heats of men with the shew only of pretended respect unto the Scriptures, then that they did with d [...]sing aged spirits search into the sense and meaning of the Holy Ghost, as men desirous to be lead by the authority of God. I heard men cry up Scripture, Scripture, nothing would prevail with them but Scrip­ture. I resolved to concurre with them in this, that the Scripture and only Scripture ought to be our ride, in these supernaturall things of Gods worship: and if I could have found that they had argued rightly out of Scripture, I should have most willingly joyned with them; but examining the sincerity of their dealing herein, I saw them carried on with a spirit of pride, imagi­ning, [Page]that because children had been baptized, and that those men which had maintained childrens baptisme, had maintained other errors; there­fore in the disaffection that they bear unto former times, they were re­solved to wrap up baptisme of children among other things, and throw out it also, together with those things that were indeed spurious and humane, out of the worship of God: they could not endure mans inventions in Gods wor­ship, and therein their zeal was good, if their knowledge had been answer­able: but here I saw much pride, vailed under the cloak of piety, men car­rying on their opinions with opposition and clamour of multitudes, rather then with sobriety and diligent enquiry into the state of the question: But whilest I saw this humour, wandering in the lower region of the unlearned, I did not so much wonder, though I were much moved for their sakes, because their souls were as pretious to me as other mens, yet when I heard that it soared aloft among the learned, I thought it then high time to bestir my self, to search into the ground and reason, why they also with others might be deceived in that point: wherein I took some pains to search into the cause, and have for the publike good given some small account thereof: and here I will turn sceptique with Mr. Tombes, and examine whether our books have stated up the question of Anabaptists high enough, and have sufficiently clee­red those Scriptures that are cited in the controversies. For my part, I con­ceive, that the main reason that hath so much prevailed with the multitude, is, because the ceremony of circumcision being put down, and that being re­quired of the Iews; so as that every circumstance of time, qualification of the person is expresse, he must be a male in the family of some believer: and no such plainnesse is used in the matter of the Sacrameut of baptisme; for want whereof, ignorant persons have proclaimed the baptisme of Infants, will-worship, because it is not said in plain terms, ye shall baptize children; this may be an excuse to men at first sight and consideration, but upon neerer enquiry; let it be considered, whether the different manner of the phrase be­tween the Gospel and the Law, hath not put the difference. The service of the Law was in shadows and types; therefore the externall rise was plain: they had not any ground at all from reason, no, not grounded upon the Word for the use of them: the authority of God did fall upon the rise it self imme­diatly, without any other explication, but that it was the confirmation and [Page]seal of the Covenant made with Abraham and his seed, whereby they were made partakers of the blessing in Christ, the seed of Abraham: Now, the Gospel doth declare the promise to Abraham more plainly, and our ingraf­ting into Christ by baptisme more distinctly, according to the nature of the sacrament; and in a more rationall way, entitling us to the promise, requi­ring the Ministers of the Gospel to baptize all nations, males and females: without any limitation of yeers or sex, whereby the proffer of grace is made to all nations: the seal of this proffer is baptisme, whereby we are ingrafted into Christ, the promised seed; the promise of the Gospel is plainly decla­red to be the promise made to Abraham, enlarged not in it self, but by ver­tue of more ample dispensation: the promise to Abraham was not only to Abraham and his seed, but to all nations of the earth, though by provi­dence before Christ, kept within the nation of the lewes. The ignorance, or not attendance on this different manner of administration have caused men sorigorously to require such expresse direction in point of administration of the sacrament of baptisme; and by this means brought themselves into such difficulty, that if they should stand to their principles, they could not sinde out any way to administer the sacrament of baptisme at all, unto any person whatsoever, for want of more plaine and particular direction: And thus, while they go about to insist upon the Letter, and require the regulation of the Ordinance of Christ, to their own fancy, they make the Gospel more ob­scure then the Law, contrary to the constant declaration of the Gospel which proclaimeth it more plain and full, more distinct and cleer, then the cloudy, weak, and childish manifestations of the Law: The Law saith, circumcise a childe at eight dayes old in the family of Abraham, or any other believer; baptize all nations, saith the Gospel: circumcise males, saith the Law; males and females saith the Gospel: circumcise, this is my Covenant, saith the Law most obscurely; baptize into Christ, by whom we have accesse by faith into grace, Rom. 5.2. most plainly saith the Gospel: The Law giveth the ceremony therein most obscurely, wrapping up the pro­mise of Christ; the Gospel promiseth Christ most plainly, and most ra­tionally drawing after it the sacrament of baptisme; children are in Christ by election of grace, before they are born; this is plainly set down in the Gospel, but obscurely intimated in the Law. Now, sacramentally men [Page]are ingrafted into Christ by baptisme, but personally to judge men faithfull, and thereby in Christ, before they were ingrafted into him, were a contra­diction in adjecto; therefore are men appointed to baptize and preach the Word as being able to administer externalls only. The second delusion is, in that they interpret the histories of the Acts of the Aposties, wherein histo­rically is related, that persons baptized did believe, not that confession, or profession of faith was made to the Apostles; and that the persons baptized had their faith approved by the Apostles; and that that was the ground up­on which they baptized them, which is a plain addition to the Scripture: But my earnest request to Mr. Thombes, and all other Anabaptists, is, to look on the doctrine of the Gospel, in a more spirituall way, then to subject it to such a grosse and carnall apprehension, and finde out some means in a more satisfactory way to state the promise of the Gospel according to the Word of God, then heretofore.

Yours in the Lord, William Hussey.

I Have perused this Answer to Mr. Tombes his Book against Pedobaptisme, or the baptizing of children; and finding it to be, in my judgement, solid and judicious, I do allow it to be printed and published.

Iohn Downame.

SATISFACTION TO Mr. Tombes his scepticall Exercitation Concerning Infants-Baptisme.

THe Method that I shall take in the handling this Contro­versie shall be, first, to state the Doctrine of Baptisme, as it was delivered by Christ, and understood by the Apostles, as may appear by their practice; then answer the so­phismes and fallcies of Anabaptists, and in particular, of Mr. Tombs; and lastly, some arguments to prove the lawfulnesse of childrens baptisme: As for the baptisme of John, it was of God; God sent him to baptize, but as the Ministry, so the Baptisme of John was personall, began and ended in him; he was not a Minister of the Gospel, he was the greatest of the Prophets, but the least in the kingdome of Heaven is greater then he; he was pre­curser, the forerunner of Christ, of whose baptisme the Scripture is so silent, (if you consider the form and nature of it) that we may quickly affirm more of it then we can be able to prove: As for Christ making Disciples, and his Disciples bap­tizing, the Scripture likewise speaketh little, only that Christ made Disciples, and his Disciples baptized them: during the time of Christs abode upon earth, he did all things well, but some things he did which he was not pleased to reveal to us, what is written, is written for our learning; and so much is written, as by be­lieving we may have eternall life.

In things that are liable to no difficultie, a greater liberty of words is used: as, Go preach the Gospel to every creature; here men cannot easily mistake, because none are capaple of the Gospel but reasonable creatures: So in the Commission, Christ saith, Make Disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father Son and holy Ghost. Here Christ giveth a Commission to make all nations his schollers, baptizing them, and teaching them what he commands: Here our Sa­viour [Page 2]is plain in the manner and form of Baptisine that was new and unknown: concerning the doctrine they should teach, he telleth them, he will give speciall command what they should teach; and for the subject, that being before limited to Jews, is now extended to the Gentiles also: but what should be the qualification of persons to be baptized is not said, neither doth the Apostles any where declare, or give any thing in charge to Timothy or Titus, (to whom St. Paul wrote, as un­to Ministers of the Gospel, to acquaint them with their duty) as matter of any dif­ficulty wherein they might easily fail: and in 1 Cor. 1. he by occasion speaking of Baptisme, speaketh of that, as of a thing consisting in form of words, and out­ward rite of washing, (so as it is ministerially to be performed) wherein no such difficulty was, or danger of mistake; and therefore he had little care thereof, men of meaner qualifications might do that; yet were the Corinthians baptized be­fore he wrote to them, and a Church; In all the dogmaticall parts of Scripture, not one word concerning any direction to the Minister whom he should baptize, whereby it is plain, that Christ did not charge his Disciples with any danger of mistake in baptizing, they should teach what Christ had or should command, for matter of doctrine; and Christ doth referre the commission to future direction; but in all the Scripture no farther explanation concerning the persons that were to be baptized: The Churches were baptized no man knowes by whom. To Churches and Saints, men received into the Church, is all the doctrine of the Apostles directed, whereby it appears, that they had care to teach all that Christ by his Spirit did command; but so little is spoken concerning the persons to be baptized, or the manner of administration, more then is in the commission; that it may plainly appeare, no controversies were raised concerning that: it was a plain case wherein they walked, without dispute; or, it seemeth, suspition of controversie, though light enough be given to the truth; so that Antipedobap­tists, without offending against plain Scripture, can have no ground to oppose the baptisme of Infants by those inartificiall and groundlesse arguments which they urge against it; and certainly, it was long ere much was said, and the strength of that which is said, will appear. What is gathered out of the commission, Go, make Disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, teaching them, &c. we shall consider:

Nations is the subject, that is so cleer, that Mr. Tombs confesseth it, though with this limitation, nations that are made Disciples; which limitation can receive no colour without apparent alteration of the words. First, make them Disciples, and then baptize them, saith Mr. Tombes: three words are added, (first, and, then,) the words plainly import, make Disciples by baptizing them and teaching. I have added nothing but the word by; and that is implied in the participiall ex­pression, as may appeare to all English men that understand their own tongue: as in the like phrase; make, or build houses, laying the foundations on the [Page 3]tock, and raising the walls and roof of lasting and durable matter, do not these participles expresse the manner of doing? or, may a man gather from hence that the house must be built before the foundation must be laid? Again, the word nations, is a Noune of multitude, and the very commission seemeth to point at the nation of the Jewes for the pattern, that they should call other nations into covenant with God even after the same manner as the Jews have been, by vertue of the same promise; and thus it is apparent, the Apostles all understood it. Paul, both to the Romans, Rom 4 11. and Gal. 3.17. doth argue, that the promise might stand the same to us, as was to Abraham, though circumcision be taken away, for as much as the promise was before circumcision, even to Abraham; and there might remain the circumcision of the heart, though the outward circumcision were taken away, and Baptisme put in the place of it; and from this promise, Acts 2.39. S. Peter argueth to Baptisme, the promise belongeth to you, therefore be baptized. If then Baptisme may be tendered to nations, nations may receive baptisme, that is, it may be, nay, it must be received by a nationall covenant, the nation of the Jews were only in covenant with God before Christ; but all nati­ons after Christ hath broken down the partition wall. Now principally a nation­all covenant doth consist in this, that the most principall of the nation do cove­nant for the rest, the more considerable part do receive for the rest, and require performance of others their inferiours. God laid circumcision upon the Jews un­der a penalty, which is a nationall way of receiving; God commandeth all to be circumcised by a Law, under a penalty, that person that was not circumcised, must be cut off, Gen. 17.14. that the whole nation might be circumcised. If any shall object, that the Jews were all to be circumcized under a penalty, but the penalty was appointed of God. I answer, that was an especiall priviledge of the Jewes, that they had their civill Lawes from God, but what lieth upon a nation as a du­ty, that it may require of all, and cut off them that refuse; and this is implied in the commission, when nations shall covenant to be Disciples, which may be done by a part for the whole, then are such as are in commission from Christ com­manded to baptize and teach the whole nation, such as are in authority may co­venant in a nationall way for the inferiour sort, and justly require all externall performances from them, such as Baptisme, and submission to be taught are; as for faith, and internall performance, no creature can judge of that, or require it of another in a judiciall way.

If any object that the Apostles did not execute their commission, but upon such parties as did believe, and would be baptized.

I answer, a commission cannot be executed in full extent, untill opportunity be gotten; he that hath a commission to hang up all the thieves in the kingdom, must execute it as he may; he must hang them as he can catch them: as soon as they could procure a nationall willingnesse, they were ready to baptize them, as [Page 4]by the many thousands baptized by them the same day of their conversion may appear, taking them in by families, which act by a nationall way, the master of the family covenanting for his servants and children: So Josh. 24.15. I and my house will serve the Lord; he may not believe for his servant, but he may cove­nant for externall worship for his son, under a penalty, and for his servant accor­ding to his condition, under penalty, or dismission of service, that the whole fa­mily or nation might come in: And that the Gentiles should in such a manner flow into the Church, the Prophets do fully testifie, Isai. 2.2. All nations shall flow, &c. See further what light the word Disciple doth give to this sense of the commission. Disciple is a relative, and is referred to master, to him that giveth precepts, which have sanctions of reward, and punishment annexed; and this is the covenant that is between the master and the scholler, that he will teach and punish the negligence of the scholler, the scholler must be under the covenant of submission, or otherwise he can be no scholler.

Now, note that two ways this covenant of a scholler may be put upon any per­son: First, it may be put on with the consent of the scholler: or, secondly, with­out, in case of a slave, his Lord may impose what covenants he pleaseth, without his consent, if he will live and enjoy his being, the father may, and that justly, by his interest that he hath over his son by nature, put him to school, and make a scholler of him, even before he be willing to consent; he may justly carry him, and correct him, if he refuse to be put under the power of a Schoolmaster, giving his Schoolmaster power to correct him. Now, to send him to school to Christ, and teach him the precepts of Christ, and this imposed on the parent of Christ, by his Apostles, Ephes. 6.4. And ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. And what a parent can do over his child in matter of duty, that may the parents of the countrey, the Ma­gistrates, require of the nations. God requireth it of them, they may put all the nation to school to Christ: Now, what if some of them be too young to learn, yet if they be under the discipline of the Master, they are schollers? as may appear in many little children that are set to school, to keep them safe, and from wanton­nesse, before they be of capacity to learn, many have a hornbook given, more for a play-game, then a book, yet are they schollers, because under the discipline and correction of the Master; is it not therefore great reason, that a Christian should dedicate his childe to Christ, to be partaker of the blessing and discipline of Christ? surely godlinesse hath the promise of this life, and that which is to come. What, is the Infant capable of no good from Christ? neither in soul nor body? hath Christ nothing to do with him? Christ did blesse sucking Infants, and as he blesseth, cannot he likewise punish at pleasure? Why then, if he hath power over all na­tions, and de jure, they are all under his discipline, may not Christian parents put their children under the tuition of Christ, seeing, though they cannot learn, yet [Page 5]he can blesse, and hath right, and will punish, which we by baptizing our Infants do but acknowledge? nay, certainly he is an Infidell that doth not think that Christ can teach the Infant by his Spirit, though we cannot by means that we can use, or that he doth not qualifie the souls of the elect Infants, with gifts of grace, not given to reprobates, if they die in infancy, which though he can, and will with­out baptisme; yet this is sufficient incouragement for a Christian parent to put his son to school to Christ, if Christ can teach him, this were a vain thing to think for any ignorant parent to refuse to put his son to school, because he understandeth not Latine or Greek himself; it is sufficient that the Master understandeth and knoweth how to teach. And certainly, words could not have been invented that could have required the Ministers to baptize all the world, Infants and all, willing or unwilling; so that any would see they might be taught, and submit to the precepts and discipline of Christ, then to expresse it by the word Nation, and Disciple; and this was plain to them that understood what it was for a na­tion to be in covenant with God, whereof there was but one pattern at that time, and so it doth appear the Apostles did understand it as a plain thing: in that, though often they took occasion to speak of baptisme, yet never did explain this point concerning childrens baptisme, as thinking it plain enough in the pattern: what might justly raise a scruple concerning the baptizing of women, seeing they were not circumcised, that is, declared in plain terms, both men and women were bap­tized. Baptisme is in room of circumcision, as in answering Mr. Tombes his argu­ments, I hope to make appear. For the further understanding of this word Dis­ciple, I shall endeavour to set forth the full latitude of the word: the formall rea­son of a Disciple, is in relatione ad Preceptorem, the foundation of which relation is a covenant between the Master and the scholler, whereby the Master is ingaged to deliver precepts, and the scholler is bound to hear and undergo the penalties of his errors and contempts.

Now, this covenant is either imposed, as in case of a slave, when a Lord doth lay any covenants upon his slave; here the benefits of the covenant be mercies, the pu­nishments, if lesse then the greatest, or under any conditions avoidable, are favors; so Naash, 1 Sam. 11.2. tendered a covenant to put out every one of the Israelites right eyes, which if he had been able to have destroyed, as he conceived he was, had been a favour; in this case one party maketh the covenant without mention­ing the other but as patient; therefore, Gen. 15.18. God is said to make a cove­nant with Abraham, and 17.9. God calleth the covenant, his covenant, God made the promise and conditions, not Abraham; but in Gen. 21.27. there, when Abraham and Abimeleck did covenant, the Text saith, they both made a covenant, Abraham his conditions, and Abimeleck his.

If the word Disciple be taken in this sense, then it is no more, but tell all nati­ons, that I am that Prophet that was promised by Moses, 'Deut. 18.18, 19. and [Page 6]thus Peter Acts 3. and Stephen Acts 7. did make disciples, repeating those words of Moses, A Prophet shall the Lord your God raise to you like unto me, him shall you heare; and he that will not hear the voice of that Prophet shall dye the death; and then these words make disciples, doe signifie no more then tell all Nations that I am sent of my Father to teach them, and they that will not heare shall dye the death. Christ without any more adoe doth give Precepts, and threaten death to all the world that refuse, and so make disciples is no more but tell them they are disciples, and under the Precepts of Christ; but if any acceptance be required of the disciple, the naturall father or father of the Country, may covenant for their children as before.

Secondly, a Disciple may be understood in reference to the end, and that either actively for a man that is active or diligent to get learning, he is said to be a Scho­ler; or passively a man is said to be a Disciple or Scholer that is learned; and this inchoativè vel ad certum aut designatum gradum vel perfectivè: if this man that is to be baptised must be taught inchoativè, it will serve turne to have learned one lesson in reference to that one lesson he is learned, though he hath learned but an A the first letter of his Alphabet. In the second sense men are assigned a certaine measure of learning as sufficient for one calling, another measure for another calling; what degree of knowledge men must attaine to before they be baptised, no man yet hath declared: and in so great a silence of Scripture were an arrogan­cie inexcusable; for want whereof, all that is said concerning a Disciple to bee made before baptized, is without any regularity and certainty; if it bee under­stood perfectivè, then a man must never be baptised, if not before he be made per­fectly learned; whereby it appeareth that we cannot be said to be made learned in disposition to Baptisme, but as before made Schollers in relation to Christ our Master by Baptisme in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, being taught the precepts of Christ.

Mr. Tombes 127. p. falleth upon this as urged by some obscure person, but saith it is so foolish, that no man will say so but he that is out of his wit, but hee in the meane time answereth it no better then by saying if this were true, the Apostles needed to have done nothing else then to baptise them: I thinke if ever a man were out of his wit, it was here; Christ saith, make Disciples by baptising them and teaching them, if he meane so, need they only baptise them, and not teach them? or if they were made Schollers, must they not be taught when they are schollers? in what sense doth this man take scholler? surely in such a sense that he need be taught no more: if he must be a Disciple in such a sense before he bee baptised, it were a bold adventure for any Minister to baptise any man, or if hee did, the party baptised must be taught no more: if baptising would make Disci­ples, the Apostles need doe no more, this were a good excuse for not preaching Priests. It is plaine Christ commands to baptise and teach; what if a man do per­forme [Page 7]part of his duty, is he discharged of the other part? the command is in conjunctive tearms both must be performed. But Mr. Tombes fell on that obiter, and I have vindicated it for the true sense of the words which he so scornfully rejected: but I further prove it.

What doe not [...] and [...] being active participles, expresse the action of their verbes: and is not [...] the end, is not every action to an end? yes certainly, and to make Disciples is the end, inrolling them by Baptisme, and after teaching them the meanes. I desire that men may not be outfaced from principles and rules. But I hasten to try the strength of Mr. Tombes his argu­ments.

He confuteth this practice, that Infants borne of Beleevers are universally to be baptised; for my part I state not the question so, but Infants borne in a Nation that are the Disciples of Christ, or have received the Gospell, are to bee baptised: of Beleevers much more, if presented by them; and they undertake to instruct them by themselves or others in the precepts of Christ.

But let us see Mr. Tombes his sophismes, That which hath no testimonies of Scripture that is doubtfull.

Infants baptisme hath no testimony of Scripture, ergo doubtfull.

The minor Mr. Tombes laboureth to prove by an induction, but it wanteth forme; he should have said, & sic de ceteris, none of all these places might prove this, and yet it might have testimony from some other place: but I will follow him in his exceptions, and see how just they are against the testimonies pro­duced.

The first testimony which he pretendeth accurately to examin, Gen. 17.7. &c. I passe by his jingle, he raiseth 14 arguments raised out of severall places of Scrip­ture as urged in defence of Paedobaptisme, which he answereth, whose answers I shall endeavour to examine, and see how the arguments are as he urgeth them, or as they may be urged from this place of Genesis: to whom the Gospell Co­venant agrees, to them the signe of the Gospell Covenant agrees; but to In­fants of Beleevers the Gospell Covenant agrees, therefore the signe of the Gospell Covenant, and consequently Baptisme. That Mr. Tombes might pre­pare for an answer, he sheweth a great deale of his accurate skill, he examines foure supposita, things granted on the part of Pedobaptists, and converteth them into questions, stateth them apart, and so endeavoureth to take away the strength of the argument.

1. Whether the Covenant made with Abraham, and the Gospell Covenant be the same? Mr. Tombes denieth with this difference, that the Covenant with Abraham was mixed, but (with respect to Mr. Tombes, his opinion of learning he hath gotten) he beginneth at the worng end to prove it: for a Gospell Covenant between God and man, taketh in all the Covenants that now are, or ever were [Page 8]since the fall between God and man: God was never in covenant with any man or Nation, but in Christ: Christ is the adequate subject of the Gospell: this Gos­pell was preached from heaven by the Angels, Luke 2.10. [...], I preach the Gospell, which was in these words, Unto you is borne this day in the City of David a Saviour which is Christ the Lord: Certainly whatsoever the Saints enjoy upon earth, or shall enjoy in heaven, they enjoy it in and for Christ. Whereas Mr. Tombes distinguisheth the promises made to Abraham into Evange­licall, Domesticall and Civill promises; what had Abraham some things in Christ and some things out of Christ? godlinesse hath the promises of this life and that which is to come. Now to deny the promises of this life to belong to Abra­ham under Evangelicall promise, or to distinguish individualls by specificall diffe­rence, is strange Divinity and stranger Logick, is reason of different nature in Pe­ter and Paul, or is Pauls reason of another nature then Peters, because he useth some particular arguments that Peter doth not? Abraham had the blessings of his house, and others have the blessings of their families: and Gal. 3.9. Paul telleth us, that they which beleeve are blessed with faithfull Abraham, they are not bles­sed only as the seed of Abraham, but as Abraham they are fountaines of bles­sing to their seed through faith in Christ; and that doth that inference cleerly prove that Abraham was intituled to the blessing by his faith, tanquam medio, as by the meanes, and therefore is faithfull repeated in the argument with Abraham, that those that beleeve are blessed not with Abraham, but faith­full Abraham; and further saith, not that the faithfull are blessed with the seed of Abraham, but with Abraham, they that beleeve have as full a right to the promise as Abraham himselfe: the same Covenant, the same blessing, re­maines to us with Abraham: as for those particular differences they are but nu­mericall, and make no difference in the promise, no more then the difference of Peter and Paul doe in mankinde: Abraham had his family blessings, wee have ours: Logica non tractat aut definit particularia: if any shall say that his being father of Christ after the flesh putteth a mixture of the Covenant, and maketh it of another nature: I deny that it doth any more vary the nature of the Cove­nant, then a badge of honor doth the nature of man, and this shall appear in that so much of the covenant as was sealed to Abraham by circumcision commeth down to us; and if Abraham had any blessing that came not to us, that was not sealed to him by circumcision, forasmuch as all the benefit that Abraham and his naturall or faithfull seed had of circumcision, that the Beleever hath without circumcision. For though it be true that circumcision was given to all indefinitly, yet the benefit of circumcision came only to the faithfull both before and after Christ came: and this is so plainly set downe by Saint Paul, that nothing can be more plaine, that circumcision was of force to Abraham by faith, Rom. 4.9.10. Faith was recko­ned to Abraham when he was uncircumcised, and that he received circumcision [Page 9]as a seale of the righteousnesse of faith: and in verse 12. he saith, that Abraham was father of circumcision to them that were uncircumcised; where he implied that those that were uncircumcised were circumcised in a sense: and this is far­ther affirmed of them who are in Christ Jesus by faith, Col. 2.10. that they are circumcised with circumcision made without hands; and this circumcision with hands is specified, Eph. 2.11. Yee were uncircumcised with circumcision in the flesh made with hands, implied that they were circumcised in the heart: what other sense can be rendred of this circumcision of heart, but that that cleannesse of heart which was signified to our fathers by circumcision, remaineth to us though the seale be altered? and this is that usuall setting downe of Evangelicall duties and benefits by ceremoniall expressions: We under the Gospel are circum­cised in heart without hands. Now how could that be, unlesse the internall part of circumcision did remaine to us? And this Mr. Tombs p. 33. doth confesse that the substance of the Covenant doth remaine; but still helpeth himselfe with his mixt covenant, which I have formerly denyed, and shall presently evince: the dif­ferent manner of administration doth not alter the Covenant: God did set forth, his promises of Heaven by Canaan: was punctuall in the ceremonies; but the cere­monies did lead those that beleeved to better then the bare ceremony, without which, circumcision and all their service was utterly without use or benefit; God did in speciall manner blesse those outward duties to his elect, because they were his owne Ordinances, causing them to see more in those types, then they in their owne nature doe seem to manifest. And thus Mr. Tombes confesseth, that the promises that were Evangelicall in the more inner sense of the Holy Ghost, doe point at the priviledges of Abrahams house in the outward face of the words: so that it may bee doubted whether this Covenant made with Abraham may be called simply Evangelicall: and this doubt is made the more just, because Mr. Tombes, and some of his company doe not call the Covenant on Mount Sinai simply Evangelicall: what have you distinguished between mixed and pure Gospell Covenants, on purpose to make the Covenant with Abraham mixt, and is it now doubtfull? and therefore doubtfull, because Master Tombes and others doe call the Covenant on Mount Sinai mixt: What if they miscall it? What ground then of the doubt? away with such groundlesse doubts: for wee call that Covenant, and all the Covenants that God made with man since the fall, purely Evangelicall, without any mixture at all; and let Mr. Tombes, or any of his company prove the contrary: in the mean time, let me intreat Mr. Tombes, and all other that meddle with controversies, to make no more distinctions nor limitations, then lawes of division and limitation will al­low: For, though at first they may win applause for their novelty, yet after ages will see their vainity, if any of them be taken up in a tract, yet times will come that will find them out: But all this while, Mr. Tombs doth not tell us what part of [Page 10]the covenant was sealed by circumcision, or whether circumcision did respect principally the domesticall part or civill, or Evangelicall part, or equally all; nor shew any reason why the Gospel covenant will not admit any such mixture as he supposeth; but I do not love to insult over a weak argument, or strike an ad­versary when he is dead.

Secondly, Mr. Tombes cometh to distinguish the seed of Abraham, I will not trouble my self to repeat or take notice of what Mr. Tombes saith well, but of such passages as he layeth down, upon which he purposeth to raise something against childrens baptisme: He indeavoureth to prove, that the seed of believing Gentiles, were not the seed of Abraham, the reason is, because Mr. Tombes doth not finde them so called: a man may not heare himself or his neighbour called a man in many yeers; nay, suppose they were never so called, were they therefore no men? But it is most plain, that the seed of believing Gentiles were the seed of Abraham; for that is the knot of the question, and God himself doth decide it. All that were by Gods appointment to be circumcised, were in some sense or other the seed of Abraham: or, otherwise there had been no need at all of calling the faithfull the seed of Abraham: But because they are partakers of the benefit of the promise, made to the seed of Abraham: And this is made plain in the doctrine of S. Paul, he handleth this promise to Abraham and his seed, not as the words do import, but as they carry the blessing of Abraham, without reference to circumcision or uncircumcision, shewing that circumcision was annexed to the promise but for a time, was but accidentall to the promise, and might be taken away, the promise remaining: This the Apostle doth most artificially prove, ac­cording to rules of art: For, Rom. 4.10. his purpose was to prove, that now they were not to retain circumcision, Christ being come, and baptisme being set in the place and room of it; and that notwithstanding the promise made to Abra­ham did remain; now that he might prove that, he sheweth that circumcision was not a proper passion to Abraham and his seed flowing from the promise, as the cause, and therefore may be separated from the promise; circumcision belong­ing rather to the ceremoniall administration then the essence of the promise; ra­ther to the externall part of the worship then the efficacy and vertue of the pro­mise; and this he proveth: First, because the promise was of force to Abra­ham through faith, before circumcision, and therefore, prior tempore, before, in time to circumcision, which it could not have been, if it had flowed from the promise as the cause: For, though the immediate cause be before its effect in na­ture, yet not in time; man is not rationalis before risibilis, and therefore as the promise was before circumcision, so it may continue after.

Object. But the promise was made to Abrahams seed, which we are not. To this I answer, the promise was made to one seed, not many, which is Christ, as Calvin and Beza explain it, not of the person of Christ, but believers in Christ; [Page 11]implying, that though there were a distinction between Jews and Gentiles, yet by faith in Christ they were all one, and the argument in Gal. 3.28. doth cleerly shew this; neither Jew nor Greek, bond nor free, all one in Christ Jesus. Abra­ham had but one blessed seed to whom the promise was made, which is Christ, saith the Text, vers. 16. But I have proved the promise was not made to Christ in person as the seed of Abraham; but the seed of Abraham is reckoned in Christ, and the word Christ is taken for the mysticall body of Christ his Church of the elect, which in reference to the promise are but one seed, whether Jew or Gen­tile, so are the blessings and sufferings of the Church reckoned the sufferings of Christ. So that this seed of Abraham in reference to the promise, was never understood of Abrahams seed, according to the flesh, but by faith: And here note, that this is not an univocall division; as if the members did not coincidere, or, that some were the seed of Abraham according to the flesh, and none of them his seed by faith, and others by faith his seed that were none of them his seed in the flesh; nay, but this distinction is in reference to the promise as distinct from cir­cumcision; all those were not of the seed according to promise, that were the seed of Abraham according to the flesh; no, not of Isaac, but the believers, these are the seed of Abraham according to promise, Gal. 3.29. If ye be Christs, them are ye Abrahams seed, and heirs according to promise, else not: And this is not to di­stinguish Jews from Gentiles, but believing Jews from infidels, and to draw the whole vertue of the promise on Believers: so the promise is belonging to Abra­ham through faith, and the seed of Abraham, as the word seed is understood in the promise, and in the estimation of God is the Believer only; so that the seed of Abraham by faith, and the seed unto whom the promise of God to Abraham did belong are the same, the seed of Abraham and the Believer, whether Jew or Gentile, whether before or after Christ, are all one, in the estimation of God: So that the seed of Abraham that were blessed were believers only, not all the seed of Abraham, nay, nor all the seed of Isaac, but in Isaac, that is, in Christ, that was the seed of Isaac, all that were in Isaac, that is in Christ, of whom Isa­ac was a type, that is, believers only, not all the seed of Isaac; for the promise did not belong to Esau that was the seed of Isaac; for that, though he were the seed of Isaac, yet he was not in Isaac, that is, he was not inserted into Isaac as a type of Christ by faith; and therefore the seed must be so understood that the pro­mise might belong to all the seed, Rom. 4.16. not to that which is of the Law only, but that which is of the faith of Abraham; not to them only which were circumcised according to Law, but to believers, though not circumcised, (that is, after circumcision was taken away by appointment of God: For, though circum­cision was not so naturall and essentiall to the promise, that it was enough at any time to entitle any to the promise without faith; yet, virtute institutionis divina, was not to be omitted untill God took it away;) for the promise was not to [Page 12] Abraham through the Law, therefore not through circumcision, which was a le­gall right, but [...] the righteousnesse of faith, vers. 13. to let us know that it was not any [...] rite or sacrament that can intitle to the promise, it doth but externally [...] the vertue of Christs blood, and by it the circumcision of the [...] the sight of God is the only circumcision, Rom. 2.29. He is a Jew [...] and circumcision is of the heart, in the Spirit, not in the [...] not of men, but of God. All this while the Scripture treateth [...] Abraham in the estimation of God: God accounteth none the seed [...] Abraham but in Christ, none heirs of the promise but in Christ, none circum­ [...] [...] them that are in Christ, and therefore saith, Rom. 2.28. that is not cir­ [...] [...] in the flesh, and this, ex regula de nullo. Again, ex [...], all that are in Christ Jesus, that is believers, are the seed of Abra­ham, heirs of the promise, circumcised in heart; but these have their estimation and praise not of m [...]n, but of God, and these are equally denied and affirmed to Abrahams s [...]d, and Gent [...]es according as they are believers, or not believers, [...] without any respect a [...] all to Abrahams seed according to the flesh; so that Abrahams [...] had no right at all to any part of the promise in the estimation of [...] they did not [...]; and therefore, Rom. 9.8. they that are the children of the [...], that is, Abrahams fresh, are not the children of God, the children of the promise a [...] accounted for the seed; and therefore, in Gen. 12.3. the Lord did make the promise not to Abraham and his seed only, but from Abraham he de­rived the blessing upon all the families of the earth; all the families of the earth were blessed in Abraham: Or, as Gen. 22.18. all nations are blessed in the seed of Abraham; and therefore do Interpreters interpret that former by [thee] that is, in thy seed, and all that are in Christ, are plainly the heirs of the promise, and none but they. Abraham in honour and title, was called the fountain of the bles­sing, but in de [...]d and truth, not Abraham, but Christ; for Abraham himself was blessed in Christ, not in himself, as Christ was; Christ was only blessed and ju­stified in and for his own holinesse by the works of the Law inherent in himself; So that Mr. Tombes his division of Abrahams seed [...], Christs spirituall seed believers, naturall seed is most inartificiall, many of his naturall seed were spi­rituall also: Abrahams seed must be divded into equivocall and univocall; equi­vocall seed Christ, for that he was not like Abraham he was of Abraham, but ex parte, according to the flesh, Rom. 1.3. He was Abrahams Lord, as well as his son; his Saviour, as well as his seed: he was the promised seed, not the seed unto [...]om the promise did belong, as the seed of Abraham, but that seed that was the fountain of blessing to Abraham and all other his seed: and therefore Christ was the blessing it self, the promise that was made to Abraham and his seed, was through the righteousnesse of faith, Rom. 4.13. but the blessing came not on Christ through the righteousnesse of faith, seeing the righteousnesse of faith is derivative [Page 13]from Christ to Abraham: Christs righteousnesse was primitive in himselfe, and that very righteousnesse that became Abrahams by faith: and therefore is Christ the inheritance of Abraham and all the faithfull seed, Esay 42.6. he is called the Covenant of the people, and a light to the Gentiles.

Secondly, Abrahams univocall seed were like unto himselfe in relation to the promise; the word seed in the promise, I will be thy God, and the God of thy seed, is only the faithfull, nothing belonging to the seed of Abrahams flesh, but so as they are faithfull, nor excluding any Nation, or family, or person in the earth, so as faithfull: as for Abrahams seed according to the flesh, if not faithfull, non est nostri instituti; it is not belonging to the doctrine of the Promise to consi­der of them at all, Rom. 2.29. they were not to be reckoned among the circumcised by God. Now for the particular application of this promise to this Nation or that, in one age to the family of Abraham according to the flesh, in another age to the Gentiles; in one age under the seale of circumcision, in another of Baptisme; sometimes to give a Nation the means of Grace, Word, and Sacraments, some­times to lead them away into captivity; these things were ordered according to the particular determination and purpose of God, though God did in a more pe­culiar manner blesse the seed of Abraham then other Nations, with the enjoy­ment of Word and Sacraments, and other blessings, yet they had them together with the land of Canaan, and the place of Gods worship; only on conditions of faith and obedience, as in Deut. 28. and 29. chapters, and by the many threatnings of removall of them by the Prophets, and their actuall captivities may appear; so that these graces of faith and obedience come on this or that Nation or person according to the purpose of Gods will, as likewise effectuall operation of the Word, and the particular effect of the Sacrament under the means of Word and Sacraments, wholly depend on the mercy of God according to the election of grace. Men are to administer the outward rite and sacrament according to the ordination of God: God by his Spirit bestoweth his grace, and with-holdeth it from whom he pleaseth: The Jewes were tyed to the eight day to signe the flesh with circumcision; but it was God that circumcised the heart, without which, the circumcision of the flesh was no circumcision in the estimation of God; as Rom. 2.28. which man cannot nor ought to take notice of, it is the way of God, no man knoweth it; it is God that giveth the new name that no man knoweth but he that hath it. Those that have this inward grace of circumcision, are called and accounted by God for the seed of Abraham, but whom must Abraham for his part in reference to this promise, account for his seed? the covenant on Gods part is to be the God of Abraham and his seed, which God knows how to extend to Jew and Gentile, and limit to beleevers even among Abrahams family. But Abraham had laid on him that hee should circumcise, but he cannot walke by Gods rules in the estimation of his seed, Gen. 17.10. This is my covenant that ye [Page 14]keep between me and you, and thy seed after thee, every manchilde among you shall be circumcised: the former part, I will be a God to thee and thy seed, might have served Abrahams turn, if he had known how to estimate his seed, as God did by the beleever, but that was past Abrahams skill, therefore must Abraham have another rule set him to walke by; and lest Abraham insisting on the word seed should debarre many from circumcision of the flesh, whom God did intend to circumcise in heart; he is charged with his duty in plaine tearmes, 12.13. verse, Every manchilde in your generations, he that is borne in the house or bought with money of any stranger that is not of thy seed. And Exod. 12.48. When a stranger shall sojourne with thee, and will keep the Passeover to the Lord, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come neare and keep the Passeover, for no uncircumcised person shall eat thereof, one law shall be to him that is home­borne, and unto the stranger that sojourneth among you: so you see how Abra­ham was to count his seed, not only those that were indeed his seed, but those that were of his family, not so only, but the seed of beleeving Gentiles, were to be the accounted seed of the promise: one law must be to the stranger that so­journeth, and to the naturall seed of Abraham: the beleeving Gentile that would keep the Passeover, must be subject to the same law with Abraham: he must cir­cumcise not only himselfe, but all his males, and the reason is, because no uncir­cumcised person may eat thereof: the master of the family might not be accoun­ted a circumcised person, unlesse all his males were circumcised, because that was the law of circumcision, that he that was circumcised himself, must circumcise all his males, because the blessing of Abraham was a family blessing, as Gen. 12.3. In thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed; and that which is there ren­dred by families, is in 18.18. rendred by Nations, All the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him: seeing all families, and all nations be of the same extent. Thus yee see plainly demonstrated that Abraham and beleeving Gentiles were to understand the seed of Abraham in reference to the promise of the seed of belee­ving Gentiles, which Mr. Tombes doth not finde.

You see the promise made to Abraham and all families, and all nations perfor­med in some families, even under the law of circumcision, the families of stran­gers, the males that were borne in the house or bought with money, were recko­ned as Abrahams males; but this stranger that would keep the Passeover, must circumcise his males not under the name of Abrahams males, not as borne in Abrahams house, nor bought with money, but under the name of the seed of such a stranger that would keep the Passeover; they could have no right to circumci­sion, but as the seed of beleeving Gentiles. Againe, you see this promise is made to all Nations in Abraham, which must have a time of performance in that sense also: but this was never performed in any nationall capacity before Christs time; yet God never maketh a promise, but he taketh a time in some sense or other to per­form: [Page 15]but we see notwithstanding this promise, God had not any Nation bles­sed but the Jewes, and therefore doth St. Paul plainly interpret that part of the promise concerning Nations in reference to Nations after Christ, Gal. 3.8. the Scripture foreseeing that God would justifie the heathen through faith preached before the Gospell to Abraham saying, In thee shall all the nations of the earth be blessed: see God made his promise to Abraham, and all families, all nations; he began with Abraham and his, and some other few Gentiles families, and after referreth the performance of the promise as it concerneth all Nations to the times wherein he foresaw that the Nations would beleeve.

3. Question, whether there be the same reason of Circumcision and Baptisme in signing the Gospell-covenant? To this Mr. Tombs saith, that the substance of the Gospell-covenant was the same in all ages, yet this covenant hath had divers formes and sanctions, where after abundance of words to prove diversity of formes and sanctions, he endeavoureth to prove a diversity of the forme and sanction of the covenant with Abraham, and forme, sanction, and accomplish­ment of the new Testament covenant: and from thence he inferreth his conclu­sion in these words. Whence I gather that there is not the same reason of circum­cision and baptisme in signing the Evangelicall covenant; nor may there be an argument drawne from the adminstration of one, to the like manner of admini­stration of the other. I have heard very much of Mr. Tombs his learning, and now I see wherein it lyeth, in drawing that out of premises that no man else can draw, and making syllogisms with two conclusions, toto coelo, divers, and yet make them arise from the same premises: this is the learning so much magnified.

That which he principally gathereth is, that there is not the same reason of circumcision and baptisme in sealing the Gospell-covenant. For my part I know but two wayes of signations or sealings, one naturall, the other ex instituto divi­no vel humane. Now I conceive both circumcision and baptisme doe signe or seale sacramentally, and by divine institution; and therefore there is the same rea­son of both their sealings. Now the different forme of the covenant maketh no difference in the seale: If it be an obligation for money, or a lease under large or ample covenants, or a conveyance of inheritance, wherein one parcell of land of an acre, or one free-hold, or more; one mannor, or more, maketh no difference in the seale or signature, neither doth it vary the reason of the seale, which are ex humano instituto obligatori: neither doth the difference of the covenant with Abraham, and the Evangelicall covenant if differing, as Mr. Tombes would have, make any difference in the reason of the signing of the Gospell-covenant by cir­cumcision and baptisme: for grant that circumcision did seale both Evangelicall and Politicall, and baptisme only Evangelicall covenants, yet they did both seale Evangelicall promises, and for the same reason, because God had appointed them to be seals: neither doth the mixture of one promise with another alter the [Page 16]operation of the seale, seeing the seale doth worke as strongly upon every part of the covenant, or every promise in the covenant, as if there were but one promise in all, or as if every covenant or promise had a single deed and single seale: but all this while what Mr. Tombes hath here assigned as differences in forme and sanction, are differences in matter, not in forme or sanction: promises, the things granted in the covenant belong to the matter of the covenant, not to either forme or sanction: things promised, whether Evangelicall or Politicall, past, present, or to come, belong only to the matter of the covenant, and do not vary the reason of their sealing, which maketh the collection of Mr. Tombes seem to me very strange; and so much the more, because it hath the testimony among other things of a learned collection.

But, lest I might be answered, that this was affirmed but barely, I shall desire that all learned men would consider what be formall differences of covenants, and what maketh the differences of sanctions.

The formall differences of a covenant may be considered, either different i [...] formis verborum, that is, when the same thing is granted in different formes of words: as when Christ is promised under the seed of the woman and the seed of Abraham. Secondly, covenants are said to differ formally; if one covenant be absolute, the other conditionall, one free, the other upon valuable consideration; the one upon a condition already performed, the other upon a remaining condi­tion of service or rent; the one voluntary on both parties, the other voluntary on the one part only, and on the other imposed: These, or such like, are formall dif­ferences in the nature of a covenant; as for formality of words, difference in them will not make an absolute covenant conditionall, or the like: And consider, I pray you, what formall differencee is there in the covenant with Abraham, and the Evangelicall covenant in Mr. Tombes his own sense? was not the covenant with Abraham and the Evangelicall promise upon the same condition in Christ through faith? were not both in Christ upon the same valuable consideration in our selves equally free? Do not we all stand bound to faith and obedience under both covenants, as you distinguish them? Did not God equally impose on us all the means of our salvation? Where then is the formall difference in these cove­nants you talk of? unlesse you mean verbis formalibus, which make no difference in law or equity. Your difference you talk of, is but in matter, which I have for­merly proved to be but imaginarie; but grant there had been a formall difference in the covenant, what had that been to the difference of the seal that signeth only ex instituto, by the command of God, conditionall, absolute, free, or imposed un­der covenant performed, or to be performed, all sealed with the same seal, un­lesse the institution put a difference.

But now let us consider what difference there is in the sanction: Sanctions are the ratifications and confirmations of a covenant, upon which the verity and [Page 17]bounds of the covenant are established: are [...]n oath: secondly, a seal: thirdly, a reward: fourthly, punishment: fifthly, earnest, and perhaps, some other that my memory and skill will not reach to, but for all these they are the same to both covenants; for the oath that he swore to Abraham, Gen. 22.16. is performed in Christ, the substance of the Evangelicall promise in your sense: and Zacharias▪ Luke 1.72, 73. doth challenge that sanction as [...]elonging to him, and tell [...]th us plainly, that if Christ had not come to deliver us from the hands of our enemies, God had not performed his oath to Abraham. Now, if you look back to that oath, ye shall see that God promised in Abraham, to blesse all the nations of the earth, which was not performed, nay, not to my one nation besides the Jews, not so much as by way of prosser, untill Christ came under the notion of a nation; but worship was restrained to Jerusalem, ordinances to the Jews, therefore Christ gave his first commission unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel, but after his commission was to all nations; and therefore Saint Paul, Rom. 2.10. entitles the Jews to honour, glory, and peace first, and also to the Gentiles: And in H [...]. 6.18. raiseth comfort after Christ, from the oath made to Abraham, and from thence I can gather (however it will sound in Mr. Tombes his cares) that the covenant made with Abraham did remain after Christ, or else the consolation is but by way of analogie: For, what comfort can we have from the sanction, if the covenant be void, unlesse by way of analogie, with which kind of argument Mr. Tombes is much troubled, when he raiseth them against himself, though many of his own arguments be nothing but analogies? Besides, our Saviour doth use the same sanction to the Gospel-covenant in Mr. Tombes his sense, even the covenant which he made with the believers in the new Testament, he doth confirm by an oath, John 5.24. Verily, he that hearth my Word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life; as likewise, John 6.47. So that it is plain, this sancti­on of an oath was the same unto Abraham and under the Gospel.

Secondly, the sanction of the seal is to both the same; for the difference of the seal doth not make the difference in the sanction, for the confirmation is the same, whether the seal be a Lion or a Lamb: If a Prince should change his se [...] from his portrayture to his arms, which he may do, if the Law forbid not, or by act of Parliament, if it do, yet the sanction would be the same: circumcision and bap­tisme, though different seals, not different sanctions.

Thirdly, for the rewards, they are the same, hell and heaven are the same; for that temporall blessing, and mixture of covenant, I have already spoken, to which I refer my Reader. But grant that there had been severall sanctions in reference to reward and punishment, what had that been to the difference of the reason, why circumcision and baptisme should seal the Evangelicall covenant, seeing they are both but one sanction, namely, seals? but the change of the seal doth not change that sanction. Thus you see, how weakly this conclusion will follow from the [Page 18]premises, and likewise, how false it is in it self; they are both seals, and the rea­sen of being such, is the same, namely, divine institution. But for the second conclusion he draweth out of the same premises, is, that baptisme and circumci­sion are not to be administred after the same manner; did any man ever say that baptisme and circumcision should be adminstred after the same manner, that were a strange and unpossible thing to imagine?

His third question, whether federate, and to be signed are convertible termes; and why many were circumcised, to whom no promise in the covenant made with Abraham did belong: as Ishmael, the same may be said of Esau. And why are these the only instances, I will grant Mr. Tombes more then he desireth, that half they that were circumcised, were such, unto whom no part of the covenant do belong: was Abraham able to know that Ishmael was a reprobate, when he cir­cumcised him? circumcision was administred by the appointment of God, and was not so intrinsecall to the covenant, that it must be, Proprium quart [...] mod [...], proprium tertio mod [...], omni s [...]li non semper, will serve: the time before Abraham, not liable to any seal, it had been sin to use a seal before God gave it: and as for Job, Lot, and such as lived in, and after Abrahams time, and were acquainted with this covenant with Abraham, they lost the benefit of the blessing if they refused to be circumcised, and what they did is not plain, the Scripture is silent.

After God had given the seal of circumcision, all that were in Abrahams house, and all believing Gentiles and their seed ought to be circumcised: in Abrahams house, those that were not circumcised were to be cut off from among Gods people, and those strangers were not to be accounted believers, nor suffered to eat the Passeover; if they, and all their males were not circumcised formerly proved out of Exod. 12. Then all that were in the covenant must be circumcised; as for the persons that were not eight dayes old, they were not to be circumcised actu­ally, nor yet women, and yet were not uncircumcised; Privatio non dicitur de subjecto habili ante tempus statutum: as catulus non dicitur caecus ante nonum diem, uec infans edentulus; if he die before the eighth day, it is all one, as if he were circumcised, being in disposition to circumcision: and the female, she was likewise circumcised as a member of Abrahams house, in that she was the seed of Abraham, partaker of the blessing of Abraham admitted to the services, offering of sacrifices, eating the Passeover, though in her person she was not, yet in her pa­rent, in her husband, in her male issue she was, which priviledges no woman that was not the seed of Abraham, or the seed of a circumcised person might enjoy. Now, see I pray you, how this woman came in to help Mr. Tombes in his argu­ment, that all that were in the covenant were not circumcised, the blessing to the family were to all the family, but some assigned persons were to be signed, but the whole blessed; if ye come neerer to all the persons of Abrahams family that were males must be circumcised; but what of that? not every member of the males, [Page 19]but their foreskins, yet every member of their bodies were partakers of the bene­fit, so were the females partakers of the blessing of the family, the first fruits san­ctifieth the whole lumpe, the redemption of the firstborne, Exod. 13.13. did re­deem the whole issue: why may not the circumcision of the male, serve for the female? that which commeth within our consideration is only this, whether any were refused because unbeleevers, not because women, or such as God exempted.

But Mr. Tombes for all his abandoning of arguments, from analogie bringeth an argument from the like, and perhaps a greater reason, children are baptized in their parents. But perhaps not so great a reason, perhaps no proportion, per­haps no reason at all, perhaps such a reason as Mr. Tombes upon second thoughts would not insist on; what, when God shall accept of the women to services, sacri­fices, Passeover include her in the blessing, nor young, nor old, never require cir­cumcision of her, appoint the males, ordaine it in such a manner, as without fur­ther explanation could not be executed upon her: how can Mr. Tombes think of proportionable reason from hence? that maysuit with the baptising Infans in their parents which must afterwards be baptized in their persons that are capable of Baptisme in their persons, by no colour of reason exempt: I pray Sir, let your next analogie have better proportion. Mr. Tombes proceedeth, But it is manifest, saith he, that the Jewes comprehended in the Covenant made with Abraham, and circumoised, were neverthelesse not admitted to baptisme by John Baptist and Christs disciples, till they prefessed repentance and faith. Hence I gather that right to Evangelicall promises was not the adequate reason of circumcision, but Gods pre­cept, gratis affirmat: he proveth nothing, only he saith, that John Baptist did not baptise circumcised persons before they professed repentance and faith in Christ; notwithstanding Mr. Tombs hath not proved, neither can he, nor any of his opinion, ever prove, that John did require that they should professe repentance and faith before they were baptized: it will not serve turne to prove that John requi­red profession of repentance to prove he required repentance: repentance and pro­fession of repentance, be two things; neither will an historicall narration, that this or that person did beleeve, prove he professed his faith. But we shall scan this fur­ther, when we shall come to answer Mr. Tombes his other arguments. Hence that is from a thing not proved to a consequence that will not follow if granted: grant John Baptist would not baptize circumcised persons untill they professed they did beleeve that God did take away circumcision in Christ, and appointed baptisme in the stead; doth it therefore follow that circumcision while it stood in force, was not dependent on the right to the Covenant, as the adequate reason why this or that person might be circumcised, I shall put Mr. Tombes in minde of this collection upon such an occasion as he will not desire to heare.

But let us see what associate cause he will assigne, to shew that right to Evan­gelicall promises was not the adequate cause; Gods precept and mans right bee [Page 20]associate reasons, causes subordinate in secundis causes, be not associate, much lesse any cause or reason immediately flowing from the first cause is associate with any second cause, cause principalis eti [...] in secundis causas non associatur, for then it could not be principall, minus principalis [...]ntum associatur. Mans right is inclu­ded in Gods precept, or otherwise there can be no adequate reason taken from▪ topick place which is finite, nor any demonstrative medium to prove them not as­sociates, seeing they are all joyned with the operation of God, secunda canse [...] moventur nisi [...]otis primis; an adequate reason doth not exclude the subordinan­on of causes, but only parity of society; mans right to the Covenant doth not ex­clude the Covenant it selfe, God commands that all that have right to the Cove­nant, and none but they shall be circumcised; is not here right to the Covenant in su [...] ge [...]ere, the adequate reason when they and none but they must be circumci­sed? the materialls of Gods commands are Covenants, and therefore in many pla­ces of Scripture are the commandements of God called Covenants. And Deut. 29.1. These are the covenants which the Lord commanded Moses. From these grounds such as they are, Mr. Tombes denieth the major if universally taken, his meaning ought to be, if the proposition be universall according to the limitation of the tearmes in the proposition, the signe of the Gospell-Covenant must agree to every person to whom the Covenant doth agree; not every signe of the Gospell-covenant but some signe, it is sufficient that notion signe in its ani­versall nature be attributed [...]i subject [...] limitato, so [...]s it is limited in the propo­sition. No man can deny this to be an universall proposition, though living crea­ture must be in a limited sense, that every man is a living creature: though there be but some living creatures that be men; yet this is universally true, every man is a living creature: what should a man talke of convertibility, no such things found in directa serie, where are many universall propositions? If Mr. Tombes should de­ny it, he knew how easily it might be proved, and therefore is all this sinffe be­fore which I have cleared what chaffe it is prefixed, and you shall see what goodly limitations follow; but see first the proofe of this, if denyed.

Those relatives that are conserved in the same subject, they are both or none in the same subject, but the Covenant and the seal of the Covenant are relatives con­served in the same subject, ergo the Covenant and the seale of the Covenant are both or none in the same subject: or thus, That subject which is capable of two such accidents as are alwayes in the same subject, that subject is capable of both or none; but that subject which is capable of the Covenant and the seale of the Covenant, is capable of two such accidents as are alwayes in the same subject, erg [...] that subject as is capable of the Covenant and the feale of the covenant, is capable of both or none. I have not concluded the major which Mr. Tombes hath denyed if universally ralten, because it is not a proposition; the termes are not in re [...]t [...], nor is est the [...], by means whereof a sylogisme cannot be made to make [Page 21]that the conclusion; but from these conclusions, or any one of them, an Enthe­neme will rise, whose consequence is not deniable. Thus the covenant and seal of the covenant are in the same subject; therefore, to whom the Gospel-covenant agreeth, to them the signe of the Gospel-covenant agrees also, which is the very same in terms which he calleth the Major. The argument is the Pedobaptists; but I conceive the form is Mr. Tousbes his; but why should this be particularly true, and universally false, I cannot understand why one should be capable of the figne of the covenant, because he is capable of the covenant, and not another?

Now, for the manifestation of the proof, that they are alwayes in the same sub­ject, the same instrument: if a covenant be written in one parchment, a seal ap­pendant upon another parchment will not seal that covenant, neither is that a co­venant formally ratified without a seal: Again, the truth of a signe doth depend on the connexion with the thing signified; so that if the bush hang at one house, and the wine sold at another, that is no signe, because false, ens ver [...] & [...], be convertible: and if it be any mans duty to set up, or any wayes give de­monstrative signes they must be set where the thing signified is, as neer as he can, or otherwise they be not signes; and this were a foolish thing in any mans apprehension, to say the land, and the deed for the land did belong to such a man, but the seal of that deed did not belong to him, that was appendant on some other deed, and belonged to another person.

But let us see upon what limitation he will grant the major, as he calleth it; [...]e telleth it is true of that signe of the covenant which agrees universally in respect of form and sinction to [...] that receive the Gospel, but it is not true of such [...] are of particular form and sanction. This is strange logick, what can a Propo­sition be universally crue in respect of some particular? Again, Mr. Tombes limi­teth the wrong term, what over man did deny a Proposition to be universall by limitation of the predicate: the subject it self doth limit the predicate: as if I should deny this Proposition to [...] universall, every man is a living creature, with this limitation, that it is true of such living creatures as are [...], but of Lions and Bears it is not true, but see further into this limitation; he saith, it is not true of circumcision; it is not affirmed of circumcision, it is affirmed only of the gene­rall nature of a signe, and consequently baptisme; circumcision is not a signe of the covenant, it was, and then it might be applied to them that were in the cove­nant, but now baptisme. A man taketh down an old sign, and [...] up a new, the old is no more a signe, it is carried into sound back place of the house, or per­haps [...], it possesseth not the place no [...] office of a signe; as for those juggling terms of form and sanction, I referre my Readed to what hath been said of them. But the minor he denieth universally taken, and here is all the len [...]t of the question, what labour is spent about the major is lost; but that Mr. Tombes is not willing [...] any thing true that is alled god by Pedobaptists, all the children of belie­ving [Page 22]Gentiles are not such as to whom the right of the covenant doth belong only such as were his spirituall seed; the ground of this distinction is an opinion, that the covenant did belong to all that in any sense were the seed of Abraham, but the Gentiles cannot be accounted the seed of Abraham after the flesh, and therefore all the claim they have to the seed of Abraham is (as Mr. Tombes stateth the matter) according to the election of grace by faith; and therefore Abtaham might circumcise all his seed, because the promise did belong to his seed. Now the seed of Abraham is to be esteemed either by nature or by grace; they that have any way had right to be Abrahams seed, have right to the promise, but the seed of believing Gentiles have no right at all, the believers themselves have a spi­rituall right. I have formerly shewed the falshood of this distribution, and that the seed of believing Gentiles under the Law, were esteemed as Abrahams seed in right to circumcision: now he telleth us they have right by election, but, saith he, which is unknown to us but by profession or revelation; implying, that those that baptize must know the election of them they do baptize, and that they can do by profession, these fancies I leave to their just occasion to be confuted. In the mean time, I briefly say, if no children were under the covenant of grace, we might bap­tize none, for as much as some are, we may, we must baptize all, seeing the di­stinct knowledge of them that are, from them that are not, belongeth to God, and not to man: and this was the rule that Abraham walked by, and that we must all walk by, as shall, I hope, appear.

But I come to the second argument. I have the longer insisted upon the defence of this first, because I conceive in answering what he hath said against that I have answered all.

The second argument that Mr. Tombes urgeth, as from the Pedobaptists from testimony of Scripture, is from 2 Colos. 11.12. The argument he raiseth thus:

To whom circumcision doth agree, to them baptisme doth agree; but to In­fants circumcision doth agree, ergo, also baptisme. The major proved.

If baptisme succeed in the room of circumcision, then baptisme belongeth to them that circumcision belonged, but the antebed [...]s true, ergo, the consequent. The major of the Prosyllogisme is apparently false, for to them that circumcision did belong, to them sacramentall baptisme doth belong, the contradictory is true, but his meaning is, that men of such condition, in respect of Infants, and he de­nieth, and cutteth, and divideth the major of the conditionall Syllogisme into such parts, that he may find out something, that he may deny: that it doth succeed baptisme he cannot deny, nor readily sinde out a reason why a man of yeers un­der the Gospel should not be able to bear as much as an Infant under the Law. I speak this in reference to the dispensation (under the Law) of the promises, the condition of the Church is called infancy, the heir under age: now, how should [...] childe of eight dayes old, when the whole Church is under age, be able to re­ceive [Page 23]circumcision, and now the Church is at age, our Infants not able to receive baptisme?

He telleth us, that the argument supposeth baptisme to succeed circumcision; it doth not suppose it, but proveth it out of Colos. 2.11.12. but he prepareth for a deniall so to succed; that those persons to be baptized, that by Gods appointment were to be circumcised, it should be persons of such quality; but because he taketh no advantage of that difference, let him alone with his own expressions. In this sense it is false, saith he, females were not circumcised, nor believers out of Abra­hams family, as for believers out of Abrahams family, if he understand it of such believers out of Abrahams family, as lived before Abrahams time, or before the Law of circumcision, such a plea, to prove all believers under the Law, were not circumcised, were vain: for to prove exemption from a positive Law by some per­sons that lived before the Law was made were exempt; but for persons that were out of Abrahams family; the promise was made to all families in Abraham, and they might be circumcised, though neither bought with money, nor born in Abrahams family, but desirous to eat the Passeover only, and so believers: they and all their males must be circumcised, but for the females, circumcision was given in terms, that did exempt females: baptisme, to all nations, not males only, as circumcision was, but females also: Besides, the Scripture doth tell us, that the Apostles did understand all nations, male and female, and accordingly did bap­tize, Acts 8.12. Now, because God hath called in females, because they are ca­pable of the signe of baptisme, which in circumcision they were not, may you without warrant thrust out Infants? or, doth it any way follow, because some persons of some quality are added, therefore those that were before capable are now uncapable, if God had declared infants uncapable, as he hath women capable, we must have been satisfied? baptisme may succeed circumcision, though with such difference as God is pleased to make; but because God maketh one diffe­rence in reference to the persons, man may not take liberty to make another: As for Job, Lot, and Melchisedeck, or whom soever else you can name, we know, if they lived after the Law of circumcision was made, they might come, and be cir­cumcised, the extent of the promise made to Abraham did reach to them; and what those persons you name did, you cannot tell, if they had any particular ex­emption, that is nothing to the question, we know none had priviledge to the or­dinance but circumcised; and in plain terms, both in the old and new Testament, nouncircumcised person shall eat thereof, Exod. 12.48. and Rom. 3.1, 2. this is reckoned the profit of circumcision, that they had the Oracles of God, here is eve­ry circumcised person, for that it is properly assigned to circumcision, as the profit of circumcision, there it is no uncircumcised person; yet Mr Tombes will tell us, all persons in covenant were not circumcised, this is the reverence that is given to the Scripture, when it crosseth their opinion, though they would make the world [Page 24]believe that they were the only men that did respect the Scriptures; he should have made his personall difference by believers, and not believers: by Infants and men of yeers: and not by male and female, in or out of Abrahams house. Two sorts of succession (which he denieth) of baptisme to circumcision, is of time; because baptisme began before circumcision ended. What if circumcision did overlap a little, and baptisme did begin a while before circumcision ended? the same Gospel Christ in his person, and by his Spirit in his Apostles, did put down one and set up another, that is all I say to that; and surely it is so frivolous, I needed not to have said so much.

In respect of signification, here Mr. Tombes is put to his shifts, in some signif­cations he confesseth, but not in others. First, I will consider the significations he alloweth, and observe, that wherein they agree, cannot hinder their succession, they both signifie the righteousnesse of faith, saith Mr. Tombes; but he must mean it doth sacramentally confirm or seal, not demonstratively signifie, but how soe­ver, he doth agree that baptisme and circumcision have the same respect to the righteousnesse of faith; and yet the hinge of all Mr. Tombes his work is on this, that Abrahams seed were circumcised, whether they believed or no, none must be baptized but actuall believers, and yet circumcision and baptisme have the same respect to faith. Me thinks the bare acknowledgement of this is enough to dash all that any Anabaptist can say, the controversie is at an end, if there be no diffe­rence in respect of faith, why should faith be required more to the baptized, then the circumcised? certainly, I would have found out some difference, or found some other reason why Infants should not be baptized, then want of faith, or I would never have opened my mouth in such a case. I would never have confessed them both seals of the righteousnesse of faith, and yet the whole weight of the busmesse depend on this; that one might be given in infancy to them that have not actuall faith, the other may not be given in infancy; for no other reason, but because they want faith. What is the reason, why circumcision, the seal, may be given where there is no faith, but baptisme the seal of faith may not; and that for no other reason, but because faith is wanting? What? may a man make a diffe­rence of a common accident? or make a genericall form a specificall difference, or a specificall form a numericall difference? this is all one, as if a man should say, that a Bear were not a man, because he can see, or not a Lion, because he can hear; and yet after confesse, that both men, and Bears, and Lions, can both heare and see: just so doth Mr. Tombes, baptisme doth not succeed circumcision, because bap­tisme must be given to believers only, yet confesseth, that both baptisme and cir­cumcision have a like respect to faith; it is true, he assigneth other differences, but none of them will more disable from baptisme, then from circumcision: The first difference is, that circumcision doth signifie Christ to come of Isaac, according to the flesh, but baptisme doth signifie incarnation, death and resurrection of [Page 25]Christs: doth this make the difference? can children better understand that Christ shall come of Isaac after the flesh, then that Christ is incamate, dead, and ris [...]n again? Secondly, can Infants better understand that the Israelites were people, se­parated from all nations, then they can understand that all are one in Christ? can they better understand that the Law of Moses must be kept, then that it is voyd, or the promise of the Land of Canaan, then of eternall life? The difference that Mr. Tombes putteth between circumcision and baptisme, cannot make Infants differ under the Law, and under the Gospel, and do they differ by that which doth agree to circumcision and baptisme?

As for the place out of which this argument is drawn, Colos. 2.11, 12. Mr. Tombes saith, that the Text doth not say we are circumcised, because we are bap­tized, but we are compleat in him, because we are circumcised in him, and buried with him in baptisme; I must needs suspect this mans learning, or his honesty, else he would never abuse his ignorant Reader thus: what, Mr. Tombes, doth the Text say, ye are compleat, because circumcised? Let men that can examine the Text see, and they shall find, [...] our translators have dealt more faithfully with us then so, that have translated it, in whom also that is, we are not only compleat in him, but we are also circumcised with the circumcision of the heart: we have that mercy sealed unto us, though circumcision be taken away, and we might seem to be without that confirmation or signe of the purity of heart, which our Fathers had. Why saith S. Paul? Christ was circumcised, and that gave an efficacy to the circumcision of our: Fathers circumcision ended in Christ, and is not descended to us, but the effect of circumcision is in the circumcision of Christ, part of the body was put off, in circumcision, but the body of sin was signified: now this Christ did in circumcision, not only so, but by buriall he put off that body, that became sin for us, of both which ye are partakers, being buried with him in baptisme; so that baptisme doth entitle us to circumcision of the heart, by the circumcision and buriall of Christ, as the circumcision of the Jewes was made effectuall by the circumcision of Christ; so we have the same grace expressed by cicumcision of the heart, in baptisme: it could not be plainer expressed, if it had been said, that the benefit of circumcision by Christ is made yours by baptisme; Circumcision was the seal of circumcision of the heart to the Jews: circumcision of the heart is sealed by baptisme to you; For it saith plainly, in whom also ye are circumcised with circumcision made without hands, in putting off the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ, the means of all this conveyed unto you by baptisme; no man can deny that circumcision in the flesh, did signifie, and sacramentally seal the circumcision of the heart which the Apostle here affirmeth of Baptisme. After all this incongruous stuffe, Mr. Tombes denieth that bap­tisme doth succeed circumcision, and therefore Infants are not as capable of bap­tisme as of circumcision; he hath confessed that faith is as requisite for one as the [Page 26]other, in regard they stand both in the same relation to faith, and thereby confes­seth what he doth deny, and yet no more then the Scripture doth affirm.

Mr. Tombes falleth out with this argument, and in a metaphoricall way talketh of an Egge, out of which, if not restrainedly taken, nothing can be gathered: but that baptisme and circumcision in some things signifie the same; and do so Noahs flood, and the red sea, yet do we not say that baptisme succeeded into their place, much lesse do we inferre any right to be instituted in their steed, respecting the same persons; I do professe I was troubled to parallel this non-sense with any thing that might equall it: if we could get these Anabaptists to speak sense, a man might the better deal with them. Can any man make any thing of this after Mr. Tombes hath allowed that they both signifie the righeousnesse of faith? that both signifie the sanctification of the heart; are they again turned into materi­am primam, that Noahs flood might be parallelled with baptisme, as well as circumcision. You bid us take heed of such argumentation; you might say bap­tisme, and speaking, in some things, do agree (in prolatione verborum;) and washing pots in some thing, in washing, in action with whatsoever we can do. Your ar­gument to Noahs Ark, is fallacia consequentiae à genere ad speciem affi [...]mativè, thus Noahs Ark agreeth with baptisme in something, therefore in sacramentall nature; as if a man should say, est animal, ergo equ [...]s, it is a living creature, ergo, an horse.

The collection that nothing can be gathered in a restrained sense, but that bap­tisme in some things signifie the same; yes, more then that, they agree in some things, we may gather in what they agree; they agree in the nature of a sacrament; in divine institution; in the [...]eal of faith: they must be administred to all to whom the tender of grace is made, not only to all that are partakers of grace. The first, in respect of providence limited to a narrow compasse, and by the ordinance bounded within the nation of Jews, though not to the persons of the Jews: all nations might come in and be circumcised, and offer sacrifice, and eat the Pass [...] ­over, but they might sacrifice no where but at Ierusalem; but now the ordinan­ces are tendered to all nations, and baptisme must be administred to all nations, no assignation of persons by the commission, surely the commission was not in­vented by man: Christ commandeth his Disciples to baptize all nations; here is not men, women, nor children, we must baptize some body; it must then be exa­mined who they are that must be baptized? it is no wil-worship to baptize, it is no will-worship to baptize all nations, to baptize whom we please, and refuse others without ground out of Scripture, that is will-worship. Now, these persons must be found à subjecto capaci from the capacity of the subject, or from the judgement of the persons in commission to baptize. Your part requireth, that you prove In­fants are unfits subjects, and I will prove in due time, that Ministers are unfit jud­ges: For, arguments drawn from analogies, I willingly grant to be invalid, if you mind analogies of proportion, to invent any part of Gods worship by; as if we [Page 27]had invented baptisme by rules of proportion, but being commanded to baptize all Nations, and told that it should stand us in the same stead that circumcision, in reference to such principles as concerne us most, and did equally concerne the Iewes in the same respects, and telling us now the particular priviledge of the Iewes should cease, and the ordinances should freely be communicated to all Na­tions; never speaketh one word of the particular qualification of the person of them that are to be baptized, he leaveth that to be understood ex natura rei under the Gospell; God dealeth with the Church as fathers with their children; when they come of years tell them the ground and reason of things, leaving circumstan­ces, which necessity will drive them upon unto their own discretion; whereas when they are children the father directeth them to the sensitive part not acquain­ting them with the reason, but supplieth the defect of the infant with the particu­lar direction of the fact to be done, having a care that he take not more upon him then he is able to beare; but when he becommeth a man if he should still conti­nue in such simplicity as insist upon the same rule, and take no notice of any rea­sonable instruction; nor by comparing his strength with infancie judge nothing of his owne power, but still looke for the same direction as he had when he was a childe, when the father chooseth rather to instruct him by reason, then by sense, he could not escape the just censure of a foole. God our Father telleth us that baptisme doth circumcise the heart, sealeth faith as circumcision did, Go baptize all Nations; this is enough for a man when he is told the nature of baptisme by comparison with circumcision; and shewed the difference in case of women and appropriation to the Jewes, to direct them by a rationall proportion with what God did direct his Church in infancie: ye shall circumcise no more, but ye shall baptize; that shall have the same operation upon the heart, and you shall not re­straine my worship to Jerusalem as of old, but goe to all Nations: If any shall further object, But what say you to Infants? I say nothing, but that baptisme in respect of my worship, and the operation it hath upon the heart, is the same with circumcision; and you know what direction I gave to my Church when shee was in infancie concerning circumcision; you are capable of as much purity of heart as they were then▪ that is all I say; you are now of yeares, whilst you were children I taught your sense, now I teach your understanding; as for argument from analogie, though it doth come farre short of an argument from precept; yet it is equall with an argument from example; for indeed all that can be drawne from an example is by analogie, and among analogies those are more certain that are drawne from a precept, then those that are drawne barely from an example, with­out any shadow of a precept, when the analogie is made by God, and we are led to the thing signified by Gods-owne direction, and told that circumcision of the heart is the same under baptisme, as under circumcision of the flesh: how dare we say that infancie maketh men uncapable of circumcision of the heart? when [Page 28]God sometime did declare, that that should be no obstacle to the administration of the signe, seeing we are trusted with administration of the signe not with the judgement of the heart; but as for that rabblement of analogies which he talketh of out of Durands Irrationale, they are things of no analogie with this. I further say, that it is not the proportion of the signe with the thing signified, that maketh a Sacrament but institution; I hope no man will affirme that baptisme wanteth institution: and as for the person, if you will have him adultus, I make no questi­on you shall runne upon a greater necessity of will-worship, then by administring of it to Infants, as I hope upon further occasion to make appeare.

Your third argument is out of the verge of your owne method, as not being drawne from any place of Scripture, and therefore I omit that, and come to your fourth Argument from the Acts 2.38, 39.

He frameth the Argument well, if the Proposition wanted not forme, it should be they to whom the promise belongeth are to be baptized; but Infants of belee­vers are they to whom the promise belongeth, therefore Infants of beleevers are to be baptized.

Mr. Tombes before he can make any answer to the argument, hee must fit his answer, that is, he must misquote and misapply two or three places of Scripture to the intent his Reader may conceive, that the promise that was there meant was not the promise made to Abraham, but the promise of sending Jesus Christ: others say sending the Holy Ghost, all is one, if Christ had not been sent, the Holy Ghost had not beene sent; and the sending Christ was the promise made to Abraham, as I have proved before out of Luke 1.73. But Mr. Tombes quoteth some places of Scriptures, as if a man in them should finde so plaine a difference from the pro­mise made to Abraham, and there spoken of by St. Peter, as must needs give full satisfaction to all that doubt of that: but let us view those places, Acts 3.25. Yee are the children of the Prophets and of the Covenant which God made with our Fathers, saying unto Abraham, And in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth bee blessed; that is plaine enough of the promise to Abraham, Act. 13.32, 33. And we declare unto you glad tydings, how that the promise that was made un­to the Fathers, God hath fulfilled the same unto us, Rom. 15.8, 9. Now I say that Jesus Christ was the Minister of circumcision for the truth of God to confirme the promises made unto the Fathers: read and judge, and judge what Mr. Tombes hath gotten by these places to prove any difference from this promise here spoken of, and the promise made to Abraham: But said Mr. Tombes, the promise was made to them he spoke to and their children, & to them that are afar off, whether they be Gentiles who are said to be afarre off, Eph. 2.17. or Iews in future ages, as Beza is doubtfull: indeed Beza doth argue that Peter did not then know the call of the Gentiles, or if he had, it is not likely that he would have told the Iewes of it; it might be, Peter did not at that time know the Nationall calling of the [Page 29]Gentiles that was afterward made knowne to him; for then he could not proper­ly have said of them that they were afarre off in respect of the Iewes, but Peter was not ignorant that as many of the Gentiles as the Lord should call had right to the promise, and this was in no age offensive to the Iewes: they alwayes knew that one law was to the homeborne and the stranger that sojourneth among them, Exod. 12, 48, that is, when and after they were called; they were put into the same condition with the Iewes in reference to the promise; it is plaine that the promise in reference to Baptisme is the same that it was in reference to circumci­sion: now it is true he further teacheth the inner power and effect of the Cove­nant which was the turning men away from their iniquity: this is the doctrine both of circumcision and baptisme, that neither circumcision which is outward in the flesh is circumcision, Rom. 2.28. neither is that baptisme which is outward, but that is circumcision which is of the heart, whose praise is not of men, but of God. Thus baptisme must be taught, it must be taught as from God, it must bee administred as by men; therefore saith Mr. Tombes, the promise is not made but on conditions of calling, and faith which may be confirmed abundantly, Rom. 4.13, 14, 16. let the proofe be examined, St. Paul doth handle the promise made to Abraham in reference to the fruit and effect of it, and so to entitle the Gentiles to the comfort and fruit of the promise, forasmuch as the promise did alwayes beare that sense, that never any of Abrahams posterity had any benefit from the pro­mise unlesse they were beleevers, and that benefit the Gentiles alwayes had if proselites, and now in a more free way; and this was ground to the Romans to seeke for justification by faith, because that was alwayes the sence and meaning of the Covenant made with Abraham; but this was the use that the faithfull ought to make of the Covenant: Abraham was justified by faith as we are; Abra­ham was not justified by circumcision, nor we by baptisme; circumcision was administred in facie Ecclesiae, according to the appointment of God, men had no­thing to doe to examin faith, the praise of that was not of men, but of God: it is confessed that Abraham did circumcise without any judgement of faith, yet had as much need of faith for benefit by the Covenant as we, his justification and sal­vation the same with ours by faith in Christ, Gal. 3.9. They which be of faith are blessed with faithfull Abraham: ye see Abraham himselfe had his blessing by faith, God preached the Gospell to Abraham, the seed of Abraham had the be­nefit of the covenant by faith: whereby it plainly appears that circumcision was not given by the estimation of faith, though it had its effect by faith; but every male of Abraham must be circumcised, and that because of the promise, the con­ditions of faith and repentance were not new conditions put on us which Abra­ham and his posterity had not, though they are more plainly preached to us then to Abraham, God was the judge of faith in Abrahams time, and is so now, but the promise of the land of Canaan stood upon conditions of obedience the effect [Page 30]of faith, notwithstanding circumcision: but, saith Mr. Tombes, the promise was not belonging to them simply as Jews, but as called, the promise did belong to all men, quatenus called, but it belonged to Jews, though not quatenus ipsum, yet it doth belong to Jews to be foederati, [...], every Jew had an interest to the promise, though not quatenus, a Jew, because Gentiles also had this right, per ac­cidens, as called, but it was accidentall to the Gentiles, some were called, and some were not; all Iews before Christ were called, but note, that called is to be distin­guished into outward calling, and inward or effectuall calling: by an outward calling, All the Iews were called: by an effectuall, only the elect were called; whether Iew or Gentile, both these callings had their severall respects unto the promise, and the seal of the promise: The outward call had a right to the Oracles, Rom. 3.1. the means of faith, and accordingly many had faith by that means, though some did not believe, that doth not make the faith of God of none effect; the promise of God signified by the word faith, in that place, is effectuall, though some do not believe, though it be without effect to them that believe not, yet it is effectuall to them that believe; and though he doth not believe, yet the Holy Ghost maketh circumcision an inseparable accident to a Iew, shewing, that the advantage of the Iew, and the profit of circumcision were the same, and the chief priviledge is, that unto them were committed the Oracles of God. Now, this outward call had the promise of God being their God, and the God of their seed, and accordingly had the seal given to them and their seed: this is plain in case of the Iews, they had circumcision, and the Oracles, and the promise, but all these are ineffectuall, without faith, Heb. 4.1, 2. Let us therefore fear, lest a promise be­ing left us of entring into his rest, any one of us come short of it: For, unto us was the Gospel preached, as well as unto them, but the Word preached did not pro­fit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. You see, many have the promise left them that may come short of it, they may have the Word without profit, the promise of God, circumcision without effect, all for want of faith, all these externall, have an externall dependance one upon another: those that were born in a believing family, had an externall promise left them, had cirumcision, had the word, though they might come short of the effect of all for want of faith; yet the externall administration must go by this outward rule; the promise in this place is understood in this sense of outward promise that belongeth to you and your children, you are called already; and that is implied in the opposition to these words afar off, such as are afar off is opposed to them that are nigh. Now, they that are nigh need no calling, but they that are afarre off, them we call; so that it is plain, calling is in reference to them that are afar off; and then the sense of the words is as plain the promise belongeth to you and your children, therefore be baptized: and the promise likewise belongeth to them that are afarre off, not yet called, as many of them as the Lord shall call: and this appears, in that the Apostle [Page 31]speaks unto these Iews, & exhorts them to amend their lives, and be baptized, for the promise belongeth to them, so that the Proposition is immediatly true, they shall be baptized, because the promise did belong to them, calling of them that are afarre off, is not at all immediately referred to baptisme, but to the promise, and therefore cannot by any means be a limitation of such persons, unto whom the promise did belong, to make fit for baptisme, as if there were some persons unto whom the promise did belong, that were not called, and some called; those that are called might be baptized, but unto whom the promise doth belong, and are not called, they may not be baptized: but this is to alter the form and sense of the Apostles words, though they might have a truth in them, yet they are not the words of the Text, nor signifie what is there said: Amendment of life hath not relation to baptisme, but to that sin they stood guilty of, and that they were con­vict that they had crucified the Lord of glory: the immediate argument that he useth to perswade them to baptisme, is, that the promise belongeth to them, it is no argument at all why they should be baptized, because the promise belonged to their children, nor because the promise belonged to them that are afarre off, but because it belonged to them, that only was ground, why the Apostle should perswade to be baptized: what is further added, is to note the amplitude of the promise, to raise up their faith, to lay hold on the promise of so bountifull a God, that extendeth his promises so largely, not to them only, but to their children, nor stayeth his bounty there, but reacheth it out also to them that are not called, to wit, such of them as he shall call; you and your children, sensu determinate, them them that are afarre off, sensu indeterminate; but if all had been limited by as ma­ny as the Lord shall call, S. Peter had drawn an universall conclusion out of parti­cular premises: For, if that part of the verse alledged, out of which the Apostle doth inferre this conclusion, or inference be limited, then the proposition is particular, as thus: If the sense of the words be, the promise belongeth to as ma­ny of you as the Lord shall call, then it is no more but the promise belongeth to some of you, a few of you, therefore be baptized every one, had been a very ir­rationall argument; nay, if you restrain promise to its strict sense, for promise with effect to the effectually called, then it can belong to a very few of them; therefore every one of you be baptized, were very strange: The promise there­fore must be understood in such a sense, as it was when applied to Abrahams seed, according to the flesh; as the faith of God in his promise, is not of none effect, though some do not believe, the promise must be understood by us, as left for all, though all attain not to it, and this not in reference to universall grace, but univer­sall dispensation of means by us men; and herein God did go before us by his owne direction in the infancy of his Church, leaving us to walk by the same rule; when we have a more ample dispensation of the means of grace committed to us. God did command all Abrahams seed to be circumcised, and all circumcised to [Page 32]eat the Passeover, though they were taught alwayes they should not possesse the land of Canaan unlesse they obeyed the voice of the Lord, Deut. 28. and 29. Chapters: and all along, Moses and the Prophets preach the blessing to the be­leever, and though under the forme of works, not the covenant of works; it was faith that God looked, as in Heb. 11. all the workes of the Patriachs are ascribed to faith, and Abrahams obedience is commended by his faith; and he and they justified by faith, and not by workes: faith grounded on the same truth of God, and the same Christ; God useth the same liberty of his will, Rom. 9.15. in the dispensation of his grace, 13. An instance out of the old Testament in Esau and Jacob will serve as well as in Peter and Judas; the grace of God did no more nor lesse depend on Sacraments then now. God did not account any man cir­cumcised but a beleever, no more doth he now baptized; Moses and the Prophets did teach faith and obedience, so do the Apostles, and that notwithstanding the promise; yet the unbeleever and murmurer shall not enter into the land of Ca­naan: thus went the doctrine, thus the estimation of God in all ages, the dispen­sation of Word and Sacraments to the Iewes, and them that were afarre off as many as the Lord shall call under the Law; but now to all Nations all are now called, God doth command all men every where to repent; in the sence of these words all the world have an outward calling. St. Peter doth argue with the Jewes to perswade them to Baptisme, à notioribus, they knew right well the bounds and extent of the promise; it was no new thing to them that the Gentiles called, should be accounted among these to whom the promise did be­long: nor that baptisme did legally wash away sinne, nor that sinners must repent, but that the promise should be sealed by baptisme, that only was new: as for that Peter did teach repentance with baptisme both together, as saith Mr. Tombs, that is not the question; repentance and faith ought to be taught at all times, as be­ing such things as God doth only look on most seasonably at all times to all men, Luke 13.3. Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish: but out of this place it doth no way follow that repentance must goe before, or is required as a prepara­tion to baptisme, verse 38. is an answer to this question, what shall we doe? we, that have crucified the Lord of glory? if to this generall question, what shall we doe? Peter had failed to instruct them to repent, he had been wanting to his duty, but presently to argue from the promise to move them to baptisme, and baptise them presently will scarce stand with any Anabaptisticall discipline; you would hardly have any great company of Catechumen's if you follow the example of the Apostle, which you so much stand upon, nay the keeping men of years, many yeares under the discipline of Catechumen's directly contrary to the Apostles ex­ample. But of preparation to baptisme we shall have further occasion to consi­der in other arguments. Mr. Tombes telleth us, that the promise doth not be­long to all Infants of beleevers, which is the minor universally taken: he hath for­merly [Page 33]told us of women, and believers before Abraham. I have formerly given satisfaction to those exceptions, but the promise is to be understood three wayes, as before may appear: Either first, in estimation of God, or, secondly, in dispen­sation of the inward grace of the Sacraments, and effectuall operation of the means, or, thirdly, in the outward dispensation of the means of grace: The two former are distributed according to the election of grace to the believer only, but the last, under the Law, to Abraham and his seed, and in Abrahams seed, which is Christ, to all the families of the earth: But now in a more explicit and plain way to all the nations of the earth; and that not only in p [...]tentia, but by particular dispensation, and providence unto many nations in actu exercito, actually many nations have the Word and Sacraments, and God grant more may have: But it seemeth, he granteth the promise doth belong to some of the Infants of belie­vers, but which they are, he cannot tell, and therefore will baptize none: The way of God was to Abraham, that because he could not distinguish, he should circumcise all: God commandeth baptisme to be administred to all nations; it will not serve our turns in the day of the Lord, to say, we did not know who did believe, and who did not: it may, and will be answered again, who made thee a judge of faith? thou art a Minister of baptisme, not a judge of faith, that is flatly denied thee: he that is a judge, is a Lord over them whom they judge, which thou art not: it were indeed great impiety, to administer baptisme to any whom we knew God had destinated to everlasting damnation, but to take upon us to passe that sentence on any person, were most high presumption, much more on any Infant: we have commission to baptize all nations, but without consent we can­not baptize any nation, and this is a good excuse: he, saith the Text, speaketh not of Infants, but children indefinitely: but it speaketh of children in reference to the promise made to Abraham, which was extended not to Abrahams children only, but the Infants of beliving Gentiles, as before: thus of the Argument from Acts 2.

As for the first argument, taken from 1 Cor. 7.14. that the Infants of a believer are holy, I have already proved: that Infants of a believer, though not of the seed of Abraham, are federally holy, and that in the words of the promise made to Abraham doth appear: As for that the words in 1 Cor. 7.14. Else were your children unholy: I say, it may well be an allusion to that federall holinesse, as I conceive, though the argument be not so cleer, that among others more plain I shall insist upon; yet not so improbable, that much may not be said: for the pre­sent thing I affirm, that the children of believing Gentiles are federally holy, for the argument, I neither assert it, nor disclame it, but refer my Reader to that that hath been spoken of that matter, by other men, whose learning and judgements I honour, and come to the sixth argument.

The sixt argument is taken from Mat. 19.14. which is repeated in Mark and [Page 34] Luke: suffer little children to come to me, for of such is the kingdome of God. The argument is, that those of whom the kingdome of heaven is, are to be bap­tized, but Infants are such of whom the kingdome of heaven is; therefore In­fants are to be baptized: For, that of coming to Christ, though the reason doth plainly convince that in this place, more is meant then a corporall coming, seeing many come to Christ corporally, of whom nothing is affirmed concerning the kingdome of God: as for his eight circumstances, he hath gathered nothing for, or against the argument: they serve for nothing but to make a noise of Mr. Tombes his learning, that he can observe eight circumstances, of which he rejected divers as not pertaining to the argument: the other he maketh nothing of, but that Christ did not baptize these children, which no man that I know, ever affir­med: but doth it follow, because they were not baptized, therefore children may not be baptized? after Christ had given direction to his Apostles and Ministers un­to the end of the world to baptize all nations, and now telleth his Disciples that to such belongeth the kingdome of heaven: which kingdome of heaven in other places is understood of the state of the Church, after the publication of the Gospel, which began after that Christ rose from the dead, into which kingdome, Iohn the Baptist never entred. Now, these little children, Luke 18.16. were [...] little, [...], recens nati, young ones: Secondly, they were such, unto whom the king­dome of God did belong: Thirdly, they were such in their visible condition they were in, and these things do all plainly appear, 1. that they were little ones, by the word [...], the derivation, doth signifie, or shew it: but Mr. Tombes saith, words are not be expounded by their derivation, but by their use: But how can he know how a word is used, but by its signification: Suppose a man should call a man that is grown a babe, for some childish condition that he perceiveth in him; doth it follow that a bab [...]e doth signifie a man of twenty or thirty yeers old? I conceive Authors do use liberty of words, but where infirmity cannot be laid up­on the Auhour, nor penury of words upon the language, much must be ascribed to the choyce of words, with consideration of their derivation; but see what confutation, that they were not Infants, [...], saith Mr. Tombes, signifies no more but embrace, [...], signifieth so much; the Proposition [...], may adde something more then to embrace: but why must it signifie to em­brace a grown person? because Mar. 9.36. he places them in the midst, as though a child that can stand alone, might not be taken up in arms: yea, but he warneth not to scandalize them, as though a childe might not be taken up in arms, that may be taught to swear and lie, and by many evill examples, led out of the way of God, or cause to stumble, but the word [...], saith he, signifieth a childe capable of teaching: it is apparent that [...], doth signifie an Infant in his mothers belly, Luke 1.44. Now, how long it doth continue [...], is the question. Mr. Tombes saith, [...] signifieth a childe capable of teaching: but see how he [Page 35]proveth it from the 2 Tim. 3.15. [...], whence hee gathereth that [...] doth signifie a childe capable of teaching: Mr. Tombes will put no difference between from his childhood and in his childhood: from in­timateth that whilst he was [...], then he knew not, but when he ceased to bee [...], then he knew: that is saith he, ever since he was a boy, then not when hee was a boy; but when doth a man [...]ease to be an infant, and begin to become a boy? For my part I understand not by what rules he walketh seeing they were infants in Christs armes, for ought Mr. Tombs hath or can say to the contrary: But saith he, they were capable of teaching, such they might be though in armes; but how doth or can hee prove these children were such? he will say the proofe lyeth on our part, that they were not capable of instruction: true, it doth if we will have any benefit by the argument, a demonstration that they were not, I cannot give, but probably I can, and far before any you can give to the contrary: First those that brought them brought them not to that end that they should bee instructed, but that he should touch them and biesse them; neither doth our Savi­our at all teach them, or say any thing to the children: certainly if they had been capable of instruction, he would not have omitted to have given them some small directions, such as they were capable of, and not have blessed them, and taught them nothing; for that derivation of [...] quasi [...] madidus, that cannot be un­derstood of the moisture of temperature, which in some sense is given to young persons till they cease to grow, till a naturall drith falleth upon their bones that hindereth their further augmentation, but that moisture is such as is on children new borne: what Mr. Goodwin saith of it, I have not seen.

But Mr. Tombes saith, that it is doubtfull whether our Saviour saith of them is the Kingdome of heaven, because the word is [...], not [...], of such, not of them. It is plaine our Saviour urgeth the relation they had to the Kingdome of heaven to move his disciples to suffer them to come to him: now it could not have been any reason why these should be admitted into the presence of Christ, because others had relation to the Kingdome of God, but the truth [...], hath a further emphasis; for the words are not urged to shew a reason why the children should come to Christ, but why the disciples should suffer them, and therefore Christ doth represent these children to his disciples, not under such a character as they did appear to him by his omniscience, but such as they were able to judge of, and therefore he saith, not [...] but [...], as if he should say, well ye have forbidden children to come unto me, but it was out of ignorance; now I tell you if any such as these are shall come hereafter, forbid them not, for of such is the Kingdome of heaven: The precept is given to the Disciples in terminis intel­ligibilibus, in words, and in a sense that may be understood by them: as if Christ should have said, To many of these little ones the Kindome of heaven doth not belong, but you are excused for that, insomuch as the Kingdome of heaven doth [Page 36]belong to such, you are not able to discerne the difference, and therefore it cannot [...] said to your charge that you did suffer any wilfully to enter into the Kingdome of God, that the Kingdome of God did not belong unto. But the Apostles might have answered, nay Sir, but we can discerne these unfit for the Kingdome of heaven, they have not actuall faith and repentance, and therefore we may not ad­mit them into the Kingdome of heaven: to this our Saviours answer is plaine; the Kingdome of heaven doth belong to such as these, therefore suffer them to come to me: Now for the further manifestation of the sense of these words, the King­dome of God is understood, either of the Kingdome of grace, or the Kingdome of glory belonging to the elect only, or of the Kingdome of the visible Church where men walke under the meanes of grace. 2. The comming unto Christ may be understood of comming to Christ motu locali, or comming to him by faith as he sitteth in his Kingdome of grace and glory: or last of all comming to him as he sitteth in the Kingdome of the visible Church: Christ hath a residence in the Kingdom of glory and in the Kingdom of grace. Now no man can come to Christ as he sitteth in the state of grace or glory, but by faith agreed on by all parties; but Christ likewise sitteth in the Kingdome of his visible Church, and teacheth them as the Prophet promised by Moses, and there inviteth all nations to the use of the meanes, and commandeth his Ministers to baptize all nations, and suffer little children, not those onely that Christ blessed and gave especiall testimony unto; but those that were but like unto them [...], they must be permitted to come to Christ. Now the question is, whether this comming to Christ is understood only of corporall comming to Christ or any, or in which of those respects this com­ming to Christ is here understood; though I dare not deny a corporall comming to Christ is there intimated, yet this is not all that is meant in the direction, Suffer little children to come to me; for the bare comming to Christs person could not have beene inferred from this assertion, for to them belongeth the Kingdome of God. I sit in the kingdome of the visible Church to dispence ordinances to all the world which I doe by my Ministers: A Prophet shall the Lord your God raise up to you, like me, saith Moses, and him shall you heare: according to which pro­mise, I sit alwayes in the visible Church teaching the minde of God; as I thus sit ready to teach, Suffer little children to come to me, for to such belogeth the vi­sible Church: if thus you understand the Kingdome of God, and the belonging of Infants thereto, to signifie their interest to the visible Church, then, come to me, signifieth no more in the direction then suffer them to bee received into the visible Church, which is no more then suffer them to be baptized, or hereafter when ye shall have commission to baptize all Nations, baptize them: Neither will Mr. Tombes his distinction serve turne, that those whose is the Kingdome of heaven may be baptized, when it appears that the kingdome of heaven belongeth to them, the text is not of these but such, that is of such as have no difference [Page 37]from these as far as you can judge in reference to the Kingdome of God, these are to be permitted to come to me. Now whereas Mr. Tombes saith such, that is such in meeknesse, that is a liberty not to be allowed in interpreting of Scripture to as­signe, or rather restraine the likenesse to humility, whereas our Saviour applieth the likenesse only in this, that they were little children, it was not similitudo qua­litatum, but subjecti ob omnes qualitates, for a subject cannot be said to be like another, if any notable disparity can be found: it is true if a quality be assigned wherein they doe agree, that one quality is enough to make them alike though they differ in all other things; but for a man barely to say such as he is fit for this or that employment, he that is fit must be such with respect to his skill, fidelity, and all other conditions requisite for that employment. Now if any thing were named wherein they were like, it was in that they were little children, now that which they were a like fit for was the Kingdome of God: and if any children can be fit for the Kingdome of God, what unfitnesse can be found in one more then another by any mortall man? therefore Christ saith, Suffer all children to come to me, for they are all alike fit for the Kingdome of God, the visible Church and the invisible too for ought you know: neither doe I know that the unfitnes of the Infidells childe is in the childe, but in the parent that will not bring it, nor covenant for it that it shall be a disciple of Christ, nor undertake to bring it up in the doctrine of the Gospell; nor is that man that is an Infidell himselfe fide dignus to be beleeved in that point, but if he will sell the interest of his child to a Christi­an, I doe not know but that Christian might bring that childe to be baptized as his upon that promise, that he will bring him up in the feare of God; I am cer­taine, notwithstanding the promise was made to Abraham and his seed, yet hee that was bought with money might be circumcised: all children therefore that are brought may be baptized, so as they be brought by persons that have interest in them, and in any charitable construction may be credited that they will bring them up Christians: it is sufficient for us if they be such as unto whom the King­dome of heaven doth belong, though the Kingdome of God belong not to them, neither can that any way belong to this argument, that Christ doth teach men that are of yeares humility from the emblem of a childe, yet one childe cannot be di­stinguished from another (as more or lesse fit to come to Christ) by their humility: for that Mr. Tombes saith Baptisme doth not bring to Christ: I say, it doth as Christ sitteth in the visible Church, into which presence the Ministers of the Go­spell have commission from Christ to admit all Nations, baptize all Nations; as for the kingdome of grace or glory, Ministers certainly have no power or au­thority to keepe any out of them, or hinder any from comming to Christ by faith.

The seventh argument is from Acts 15 32, 33. Acts 18.8. 1 Cor. 1.16.

If the Apostles baptized whole housholds, then Infants, &c. but &c. ergo,

This argument, saith Mr. Tombes, rests on a sleight conjecture, that there were Infants in those houses, and that these Infants were baptized: but saith he, the words plainly prove under the name of the whole house, are understood those only that heard the Word and believed. Hence he denieth the consequence, im­plying that many whole houses may be baptized, yet no Infants, because it is pos­sible they may be without children: And he further affirmeth, either these were without children, or else the children were not comprehended under the whole house, which he laboureth to prove out of the severall circumstances of the seve­rall Texts which I shall endeavour to examine along with Mr. Tombes, not only as he mentioneth them here in this pag. 20. of his Exercitation, but as in his Ex [...] ­men of Mr. Marshals Sermon, from p. 137. to 142. Mr. Marshall saith, that the Gospel took place, as the old administration by taking in those families together. This Mr. Tombes strongly endeavoureth to oppose, and endeavours to set up an assertion opposite to that for true: saith he, the administration is quite opposite to that of circumcision: the opposition which he fancieth, he feigneth to consist in severall differences: First, that Abrahams family was singled out: the males only: whether in the covenant of grace, or not: children, or servants: elder or younger: at eight dayes old in the house, by the Master, or others in his stead.

For, his first difference was, Abrahams family only singled out for circumci­sion, that is boldly affirmed, it is plain the promise in the seed of Abraham was to all the families of the earth: Gen. 12.3. which is rendered by nations, there promise is made in the seed of Abraham, which in the 3. of Galat. is applied to Christ: so that Abrahams family is not singled out for the blessing, it is true, Abrahams family is singled out to be the line of Christ, according to the flesh; many families could not have that priviledge, but the priviledge of circum­cision was not restrained to Abrahams family, but extended to all the nations of the earth, and was actually afforded to so many families as would dwell among them, or desired to eat the Passeover, as I have formerly proved it: it is plain as ma­ny as would be, or were partakers of the blessing, must be circumcised: but the blessing was promised in actu signato, to all the nations of the earth, though be­fore Christ it was in actu exercito performed to no nation but the Jewes, yet ma­ny other families besides Abraham were circumcised; therefore that difference is not between baptisme and circumcision, that circumcision did belong to Abra­hams family alone.

For his second diffence, that males only were circumcised, I have already spo­ken to that: and the third, wherein all the knot of the question doth consist, what is here affirmed by Mr. Tombes, is but petitio principii: as circumcision was to be administred in all the families that would eat the Passeover, whether persons that were circumcised did belong to the covenant of grace, or not; so is baptisme, there being no man on earth, that can judge of any but himself, whether he be­long [Page 39]to the covenant of grace or no: As for the circumcision of children, ser­vants, elder, younger, I know not baptisme doth make any more difference then circumcision doth; for that in the house, and by the Master of the family, or some in his stead; I say, that in Abrahams time, all the publike offices of King and Priest, were in Abrahams person; Levi was in the loines of Abraham, what hand the Priest or the Judge had in the act of circumcision, the Scripture is silent: but certainly, whether it were to be administred privately or publikely, there must be a publike account given of it, for as much as the person that was not circumcised must be cut off, which could not be done, but by a publike act; neither do I know a more publike dispensation under the Gospel should inforce a more particular administration: but the agreement in the last circumstance, is that whereon the argument doth rest: that is, that whole families were brought to baptisme un­der the Gospel: To which Mr. Tombes saith, that it was but contingent to fa­milies; that they were baptized, no precept, no prophesie for it: contingent it is, I confesse, in respect of any causes, that any nation, family, or person in the world should be baptized, but that nations should be baptized, is not without either pre­cept or prophesie: the Apostles are commanded to baptize all nations, the blessing is promised to all nations in Abraham, and all nations are prophesied to flow to the mountain of Gods Church, Isai. 2. but we find not infants baptized, nor fa­milies baptized in conformity to circumcision: Mr. Tombes saith, that the con­formity is not intimated: I say, that families were baptized, the conformity ari­seth of it self; But Mr. Tombes desireth to elude this argument, by shewing that actuall faith was first required in every person before he were baptized; and therefore the Apostles did not baptize any, but such as actually did believe, and make profession of their faith; so that they did not baptize any family, unlesse upon particular cognizance of every particular mans faith; this you shall see how fairly he will prove: as for the examples from John, and before the commission, I know they walked by speciall light, but what, we cannot tell, after they had their commission, certainly they walked by it: The first instance after the resur­rection, is Acts 2.41. they that gladly received the Word of God were baptized, and why should they not? did ever any deny, that such as received the Word of God should be baptized? and these are they, saith Mr. Tombes, to whom he said, vers. 39. the promise belongeth to you and to your children, added three thou­sand souls, yet never a child baptized; men may as well say, never a man, or ne­ver a woman: from the word souls, an Infant may be called a soul, as well as men or women; but, saith Mr. Tombes, the Text saith, those that received the Word were baptized; doth it say, their children were not? but Mr. Tombes confesseth they were the same persons that gladly received the Word of God, un­to whom Peter had said, the promise did belong to them and their children, that was the Word they gladly received: And Saint Peter inferreth from this, that [Page 40]the promise did belong to them, that they should therefore be baptized, because the promise did belong to them.

Now if this argument from the promise was good concerning them, why is it not as good for their children? and if they received the word of the promise gladly for themselves, it is likely if it had been denied them in respect of their children, they would some of them have had the boldnesse to have asked it for their children; and said, Peter, you told us of the promise, that it belonged to our children to as well as us; and you told us that that was a good reason why wee should be baptized, and accordingly we are baptised: why should not that be a ground for our children to be baptized also? we know no reason why that should be a reason for us to be baptized and not for them: You tell us the promise doth belong to them as well as to us; as for the limitation of as many as the Lord shall call, that is to be referred to them that are afarre off, not to us: afarre off, is opposed to them that are neare, Ephesians 2, 13. You that were farre off are made nigh by the bloud of Christ: farre off, signifieth them that are not yet called, nigh, them that are called; to looke on the words in their originall sense, we do not use to call them that are nigh already, but them that are afarre off, that they may come nigh: and this appeareth plainly to be the sense; by that here are severall subjects of the promise, you are the subject of the promise, and your children and they that are farre off: You are not your children, your children are not you, you nor your children are not afarre off, they that are afarre off must be called, that they may be nigh, that so the promise may belong to you all, that so ye may all be baptized. What Mr. Goodwins fancie is, Mr. T. doth not tell us, nor have I seen or heard, but cannot be denied that the word soules doe comprehend men, women and children; for though there be some difference in their bodies, yet they agree all in this that they be soules taken for persons; though for my part, I will not argue from hence, that children were baptized; yet I say from hence is clearly evinced, that children have a right and interest to baptisme, because to the promise, and that as clearly as any thing can be: for that which is a cause produ­cing an effect in one subject, will produce the same effect in another, posita causa ponitur effectus rationale est risible, is as true in children, as in men; he to whom the promise doth belong, may be baptized, is as true in children as in men, if the promise doth belong to them both, as the text plainly saith it doth; and the poin­ting of the Greeke text doth plainly declare this to be the meaning of the words: for there is no point between you and your children, but between children and them that are afarre off, to shew the promise belonged to them and their children in their present condition to them that are afarre off after their call: where note that the promise is to bee understood in the externall or internall consideration: according to the externall Sacraments have their administration amongst men; which tearmes ye have applyed to Jews and circumcision, Rom. 2.29. He is a Jew [Page 41]which is one inwardly, and circumcision is that of the heart in Spirit, and not the Letter, whose praise is not of men, but of God; the Letter saith, God will be the God of Abraham and his seed, but the spirit saith, that he will be so to the elect and faithfull: The Letter saith, every male shall be circumcised; the Spirit saith, that circumcision is no circumcision which is outward, but that which is of the heart: the Letter looketh on the family of Abraham, either by generation or by communion; the Spirit on a remnant only, according to the election of grace [...] the Letter requireth circumcision or cutteth off, some say [Goodwins antiq. Ainsworth in locum;] the parent, some say, the child for the neglect; thus exter­nall performance hath its praise or dispraise of men, but that of the Spirit hath its praise not of men, but of God: To this latter, only faith and repentance is requi­red, or rather both; circumcision of the heart, and baptisme of the heart, are no­thing else but faith and repentance which God can judge, and praise not man; and thus the promise, according to the Letter, did belong to those Jews, to whom Peter spake, even before their effectuall call; and this Peter urgeth to them as a motive to move them to be baptized: as if he should have said, upon this ground ye were circumcised, and now upon the same ground ye may be baptized; it is true, we are not only Ministers of the Letter, but of the Spirit, and therefore we preach faith and repentance as requisite to your baptisme of the Spirit; but you must give account of that to God, and not to us, we can take no account of it, we are not Lords and Judges of your faith, we preach all the duties that belong to the inward man, but administer sacraments and guide our charity towards our bre­thren by outward rules, it must satisfie us: if you will come and claim your in­terest to the promise, both for your selves and your children, we must baptize you and your children; we will teach what account ye must make to God of your faith and repentance, how you must bring up your children in the feare of God, but we can take account of none of these things. The next place of Scripture which he taketh in to this confutation, is Acts 8.12. by which he proveth that the Apostles did not take in whole families at once, because the whole City of Samaria: we prove a personall account of all to be baptized, was not required, because they were taken in by whole families in the Apostles time, and Mr. Tombes confuseth this, by saying, they were taken in by whole cities; I like such confutations. Next, out of Acts 8.38. and 9.18. he proveth that the Eunuch and Paul; single persons were baptized; brave arguments, therefore fa­milies were not baptized, the Apostles had a commission to baptize all nations, and accordingly they performed their commission with all expedition, taking in families, cities, nations, single persons, refusing none that would enter themselves in the School of Christ: Christ is not like a Grammar-school-master, that will re­ceive no schollers, unlesse they be entred before; he teacheth from the teat to the grave, from the ABC, to perfection; the next is of Cornelius, his houshold was [Page 42]baptized, as may be gathered out of Acts 11.14. saith Mr. Tombes, though I con­ceive he mistaketh the place: the baptisme of Cornelius family is 10.48. But this houshold was not an ordinary houshold, but a garrison of Souldiers, what mat­ter is there in that; what did Peter cause them to be baptized, for feare, because they were Souldiers, God told Cornelius before Peter came, that he should tell them words by which he and all his houshold shall be saved? Mr. Tombes infer­reth that all Cornelius houshold were saved: good Charity, but bad Logick; that because there was vertue in the word to save him and all his houshold, therefore all his houshold were saved: in the 1 Cor. 1.16. Paul baptized the houshold of Stephanus, but saith Mr. Tombs in 16.15. the houshold of Stephanus is addicted to the Ministery of the Saints; what is this to the purpose? did ever any man say that those that were baptized should never after be good for any thing? he saith, some things of Crispus and others, that the houshold is understood for them that be­leeve in the house; but comming to Lydia, he hath nothing to say from any cir­cumstance of that text, to prove that any of Lydias house did beleeve but herselfe, but saith it must be interpreted by other places where they expresse baptizing whole housholds, they expresse beleeving and receiving the word by the whole houshold: strange that one history shall be expounded by another, because one houshold received the word and beleeved, therefore another houshold that was baptized, did likewise beleeve: an history can but inferre that some that did be­leeve were baptized: but saith Mr. Tombes, the frequent use of the word hous­hold for growne men in the house, Mat. 10.13. if the house be worthy, certainly what portion may be aimed at, as for whose sake the house is said to bee worthy of the Apostles abode in it is uncertaine; the house there is understood of all, little and great, your peace is no more, but your prayers: now first the worthinesse may be found in the Master of the family alone, and the Apostles may pray for the whole family little and great.

But now Mr. Tombes will fall upon some argument, to prove that the Apo­stles did not take in familes, for then saith he, if it be true that the president bee an houshold, I demand whether we must baptize wife and servants because they professe the faith, or because they be of the houshold? if because of the houshold whether professing faith or not, then an unbeleeving wife or servant should bee baptized because they are of the houshold; unlesse it be supposed that the husband or master being a beleever, the wife or servant cannot be an unbeleever; the con­trary saith he appeareth: and thus Mr. Tombs hath done his doe, and then cryeth absurd: but where lyeth the force of his inferences, and the absurdity I cannot tell; Mr. Marshall and Mr. Blake say, whole housholds were taken in; but it fol­lows all housholds must come in; all or none, all that is inferred out of that, is, that the Gospell may be received by a family: and master of the family may tender all his family to baptisme, & the commissioner to baptize all the world, need enquire [Page 43]no further into the profession of the family, but may take the testimony of the Master for the whole family; for you change a terme, and say, if a wife or a servant, make not profession of faith (you minde to the Minister) then an unbeleever may be baptized, and so he may, though they should make profession of faith: but you throughout your whole Discourse, make faith, and profession of faith all one, more Anabaptistico, for lay that mistake aside which you must doe, and all Ana­baptists mouthes are stopt; for it is one thing to beleeve, and another to make profession of faith: you much talke of this houshold, and that houshold belee­ving; but shew me any but the Eunuch that made any profession of faith before baptisme, in which case Philip did not teach him to confesse his faith, but to be­leeve only: it cannot be denyed, that the doctrin of faith ought to be taught to men of yeares, and that not as a preparation to baptisme only, but for that the doctrine of faith is necessary to all actions; whatsoever is not of faith is sinne: that which we argue from receiving of families, and from the Apostles commission to bap­tize Nations, is that Nations may make Lawes for their whole Nations to be bap­tized; and if the major part of a Nation doe according to their duty receive baptisme, and undertake for the whole Nation to submit themselves to become schollers of Christ, they may justly compell by any penalty to joyne with them in the externall worship of God, Deum esse & colendum, is the Law of Nature: all Nations have ever agreed to serve some God, without which no humane society can be preserved: all societies are united by a Covenant confirmed by an oath in the name of some God, and doe agree upon some publike worship of their God: but may not a Christian Nation agree upon the service of God in Christ? may they not enrole themselves the Disciples of Christ, and submit to the publike wor­ship of God, of which baptisme is the first? this therefore is it which is drawne from the commission directed to the Disciples for the baptizing of Nations, that Nations may act as Nations, and families as families; that is, that the more or­ganicall parts must act for the residue, the Magistrates for the Nation, the Master of the family for the family; otherwise it cannot be said to be the act of the Nati­on, or of the family, though a post factum may be historically related to overspread a Nation that is done without any Nationall consent to shew the universality of a spreading evill: yet where a duty is charged upon a Nation, it cannot be orderly received without a Nationall consent: and that of the Gaolers houshold doth ap­peare to be acted by his consent, as the text is plaine, Act. 16.32. Paul preached to all in the house, but in 33. it is said the the Gaoler was baptized and all his: as if the text should have said, there were divers in the house that heard the word that the Gaoler had nothing to doe with, but those that were his he would present to Paul to be baptized. Now whereas in 34. verse it is urged by Mr. Tombes that he rejoyced beleeving in God with all his house: I confesse Passor and o­thers render [...] so; yet it is an adverbe of place, and can reasonably signifie no [Page 44]more but the place where he rejoyced; besides if [...] should signifie with all in the house, it must signifie more then were baptized, because none were baptized but his, and if under the name of his, then he had an interest in presenting them. Now man can have no more interest in any then in his children, they are his in a more especiall manner; so that if he had any children, it is apparent they were baptized, or else they were none of his, all his were baptized: And whereas Mr. Tombes saith, all the houshold beleeved, or all that were baptized beleeved; it is plaine that the Master of the house onely is said to beleeve, for the participle [...] is referred to the nominative case, the adverbe that is [...] though it should be translated with all his house, is to be referred to the verbe, which is [...] rejoyced, they rejoyced to see their master or father so merry: if belee­ving had been referred to all the house, it must have been [...] domo credente with his house beleeving; whereas it is now to be rendred, hee be­leeving rejoyced with all his houshold, none is said to beleeye but himselfe as in Lydias case, is likewise plaine: from whence it will appeare that a beleeving ma­ster may present his servant and children to baptisme, though it doth not follow that a beleeving master may or will present those of his servants or children, that are adult or of yeares without their consent, yet he may be his authority require them to it as an externall duty; he cannot compell them to any duty, or restraine them from any vice without their consent, yet he may correct them, and incline their will to any outward duty by his authority, and having wrought upon them [...]o consent and submit, the commissioner may baptize them that come so presen­ [...]ed: the master of a family is a King, a Prophet, and a Priest, if by any of these offices he can prevaile with his houshold, he may bring them to the performance of their duties: Now baptizing as a duty and precept lyeth on the Minister ante­cedenter to the faith of the baptized; and is at least annexed to doctrine, and not to faith, they must teach and baptize all Nations: now it is plaine they must teach as well them that beleeve not, as them that beleeve; againe baptizing is modus de­candi, a manner of teaching; as I have said, and shall further be made appeare up­on occasion. Now whereas Mr. Tombes further saith, that then it will follow that the whole houshold must necessarily beleeve if the Master doth, and proveth that some time it falleth out otherwise: I say, that though it bee the master or husbands duty to move his family, yet he cannot alwaies prevaile; and speciall direction concerning the wife is given to suffer her in regard of the bond of Ma­trimony and that under some limited and restrained tearms in hope of her con­version; yet nothing is said concerning servants but that he may either force them or be rid of them if they continue Infidels in that sense, that is refuse to list them­selves among Disciples; the publike worship of some God being the bound of all humane society, 101. Ps. 6. He that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me: he that keepeth any servant that will not be baptized, is not a good Christian; [Page 45]it is true, all men of discretion ought to consent to every duty; but baptisme is a duty without consent, as all other precepts are, it is pactum impositum, as before; and so I come to follow his arguments, lapping up two or three of them, because he maketh sleight of the arguments, we shall take occasion to shew the weaknesse of some of his answers, and where the arguments be weak, the weaknesse is his, to bring them in.

The first argument of this sort, is taken from the generall promises to the god­ly and their seed, this hath already been handled how they conclude for baptisme he citeth, Exod. 20.6. Psal. 112.2. he saith they are for the most part con­cerning temporall things, then spirituall also, as confessed, generall and indefi­nite; if generall and indefinite it must be so by reason of the necessity of the matter, otherwise indefinite would be particular; election doth not stop chil­dren, they are elect when children, or never; these promises are with condition of faith and repentance, therefore not belonging to this place, saith Mr. Tombes. Well, then he was too blame to bring it.

2. Isai. 49.22. it is foretold, that Gentiles should bring their children in their armes, therefore the Prophets foresaw the baptisme of Infants: It is the happi­nesse of the best arguments to have the weakest answers; they might be brought to other ends, which he proveth from Mat. 19.15. but were those in that place brought to the Church according to the prophesie? then Christ must needs be un­derstood as sitting in the Church, and suffer them to come to me, must be; admit them into the Church, as I have said: it is true, that men which come to the Church, come for other ends then to be baptized, but if baptisme be the door of the Church, as it is the sacramentall door of the visible Church, nemine contradi­ [...]ente, besides Independents, then whatsoever be their businesse, they did come in by the door of baptisme: And whereas Mr. Tombes saith, that was an analogie and was performed by the perswasions in which the Gentiles did perswade their chil­dren to imbrace Christ: he formerly affirmeth little ones in armes are not to be baptized, because not capable of instructions, and must bringing of little ones in armes, be interpreted by instructions? it is true that Junius doth say, cum vexill [...] Evangelii quod est potentia Dei ad salutem, haec omnia alleg [...]ric [...] dicuntur de am­plitudine regni Christi spiritualis; but he doth not say, that bringing of children in armes should be understood of grown children, capable of instruction, when it may be literally understood.

Lastly, I shall only mention that argument, taken out of Ephes. 5.26. where it is said, Christ cleansed his Church with washing of water through the Word: from whence it is argued, that the Church is washed with water of baptisme, or not partaker of the washing by the blood of Christ. To which Mr. Tombes maketh this answer: that if this argument be of force, the thief repenting on the crosse, Infants, catechumeni, martyrs, and others, dying without baptisme, [Page 46]are excluded out of the Church, and the benefit of Christ; he should have said, if none of these were capable of baptisme, then were they excluded from the benefit of Christs death, where God doth prevent any by death, the party so taken away by God, is not deprived of the benefit of Christs death; God is not tied to sacra­ments so, as that he cannot fave without them, though contempt of sacraments be sinfull and damnable.

Mr. Tombes his second argument is, That which agreeth not with the Lords institution of baptisme, is deservedly doubtfull, but the right of Infants baptisme agreeth not with the Lords institution of baptisme, Ergo.

I deny the minor, Mr. Tombes proveth, because Infants cannot be Disciples of Christ; I say they may. Mr. Tombes confesseth Infants may be sanctified, but it cannot be made known to us, that is not Mr. Tombes his argument, that it must be known to us that they are sanctified, neither from the institution doth it appeare that they must be Disciples before they are baptized, much lesse that it must appear: The commission to the Apostles, and from them to all the Ministers of the Word to the end of the world, is to make Disciples of all nations, baptizing and teaching them what Christ shall command. The parties to be baptized, are all nations, without any restriction at all; their commission is, to baptize all na­tions, and this in reference to that nationall covenant that then was among the Jews, only the publike worship was limited to the Temple then, now to no place, make Disciples, is no limitation of persons: Their commission was to make all nations Disciples, which they were to execute, pro viribus, to the uttermost of their power; the conjunction of baptisme, and teaching, with making Disciples, was not with respect to any personall restriction, but it is conjunctio mediorum ad finem, make all nations Disciples; the meaning is, by baptisme and teaching: Now, the setting down of these words, making Disciples; first is, because that was the end of their commission first, in intention, and must first be proposed: as in all operations is necessary, as if a man will have an house built, a city conque­red, an enemy taken; the first thing that he proposeth, is the thing that he will have done, and after directeth, or consulteth about the means, though they must use the means before they get the end, I have already spoken to this, and shall more fully in my arguments that I intend for childrens baptisine: For, that which Master Tombes saith, then the children of Infidels might be baptized, I have already spo­ken of, that it is not incapacity of the childe that disableth him from baptisme, it is the fault of the parent that will not bring his childe, nor will undertake to bring up his childe in Christian doctrine; (nor is he that is an Infidell, herein to be believed) but in Christ, Jewes and Gentiles are all one, and a childe as ca­pable of Christian Religion, (according to his education) though his father be an Heathen, as if a Christian; the reason why the seed of Abraham had a privi­ledge, was, the Ordinances were only in his house, as many as came to have be­nefit [Page 47]of the Ordinances, were circumcised, though not of Abrahams seed; they that were bought with money, or sojourned in Abrahams house, nay, though they were reckoned as a family distinct from Abrahams, and the males reckoned not as Abrahams males, but their own males; yet, if they desired to eate the Passeover, their males must be circumcised, Exod. 12.48. Those that joyn them­selves to the Ordinances, and claim their interest in baptisime, and relation in Christ, to be his Disciples, they must be baptized, and their families, and as many as they can undertake for, to bring to the outward means, if they can undertake for whole nations, the commissioners may not refuse them: they must be suffered to come, if any will undertake to bring them, though children. Now, that fa­thers by undertaking to bring their children to hearing and to learning, what is the way of God, do no more then their dutie, and what they can readily per­form, and do bring their children to Church, and take order for their catechizing, which (were the parents as carefull as they ought) were a great means to pro­mote Religion and Piety among men, and is often required in the Scripture from the father. That is, by this Anabaptisticall tenet laid only upon the Minister, which turneth into a great incumbrance, and neglect of the instruction of the people, whereby many have been enforced to fall into that inexcusable error that all men have the office of a Minister, if baptized themselves, and have gifts, such as the people shall approve of: But, grant that the nations must be made Disciples, be­fore they must be baptized, and that all nations must believe before Disciples? doth it follow, that every party must believe that is baptized, quod convenit parti, quapars convenit toti gratia istius partis, that which agreeth to any part, agreeth to the whole, by reason of the part; but not to every part? the whole man seeth with his eye (I speak de actu videndi) but not with any other member, but ha­ving gotten the knowledge by the eye, the soul implieth other members more imperato, to do their office: So the Magistrates that are not only the sense, but the understanding of the nations believing may be baptized, and by the duty of their place, require others to be baptized also: Non quicquid totius etiam partis est, in totis integrantibus, a man must see before he go into the river to be washed, he seeth with his eye, not with his foot; but when he is washed, his foot may be washed also: the nation believeth by the Magistrate by whose authority the whole nation is put to school to Christ, and is baptized, which is an externall du­ty, and may be required by the Magistrate: as for faith, we have no Lords of faith, here every man must give an account of his faith to the Lord of faith, Je­sus Christ, upon his day. In the mean time, it is a most insolent arrogancy, and contrary to Scripture, for any man to judge of anothers faith. Saint Paul saith, not as having dominion over your faith, but as helpers of your joy: 2 Cor. 1.24. and Saint Peter, not as Lords over the flock: if therefore they are not Lords, how come they to be Judges? what do Lordship consist in a name, or in judicature? names [Page 48]be but weake and childish apprehensions of things, natures only yeeld distinct knowledge: Moses could no sooner take upon him to judge of wrong done among brethren, but presently they aske, Who made him a Prince, a Lord, a Judge, inti­mating that judgement belongeth to a Lord: Wee doe much declaime against Lordship and dominion over other mens consciences and faith, yet not only Mi­nisters, but every man will take upon him to judge without scruple, this man hath faith, and that man hath none: it is true, charity doth permit men privatly to ap­prove, but not condemne the faith of another: Baptisme is an externall duty, such as man can take notice of whether done or not: and if a man be called to an ac­count whether he hath baptized such a person or not, or whether he went or car­ried an Infant to be baptized, who baptized him? he may be able to prove these things by humane testimony, and therefore they are of humane cognizance: but who hath faith, and who not, no man breathing can give any testimony thereto, and therefore man cannot judge: But some man will say, the foot doth not see, because not capable for want of organs; but every man is capable of faith, that is not the question, whether all are capable of faith, I mean men of all conditions; but whether faith be of humane cognizance, neither is that argument of any force that faith is necessary to make Baptisme of any efficacie, therefore untill the Mi­nisters are acquainted that the persons to be baptized have faith, they may not baptize them by the same rule, because no humane action can be well done with­out faith, no humane action can be required of any man by the Civill Magistrate, & so at one blow al humane society is destroied; but man must require all duties of men that they can judge of leaving the inner part of it to the judgement of God, who only can judge the heart: for as the neglect of a duty is sinful, so no sin so great as to enter upon the Prerogatives of God, who only can judge the heart, so that whatsoever is pretended from any speech of beleeving before Baptisme: yet no one place where the profession of faith is required of the person to be baptized.

The third argument is taken from the practice of the Apostles and John the Baptist, which saith he, are the best Expositors of the Institution, but I deny it, the exposition cannot goe before the text, John the Baptist that never lived to see the institution could not expound the words he never heard of: but he affirmeth that baptisme cannot be administred to Infants after the same manner as the A­postles and John the Baptist did administer it; for confirmation whereof he affir­meth that the Jewes did confesse their sinnes before Baptisme, and the Apostles before Baptisme, did require shews of faith and repentance.

First, that they did confesse sins before Baptisme, he proveth out of Mat. 3.6. they were baptized of John in Jordan confessing their sins: but doth this prove that every particular person did confesse his sinnes to John the Baptist, and that this confession was before Baptisme, or that it was an orall confession? none of all these things are necessarily drawne out of the words; the words are, Jerusalem [Page 49]and all Judea, and the region round about Jordan were baptized confessing their sinnes. Now I have formerly shewed that a Nation, or Country, or City may be said to doe a thing, though the organicall part principall men only doe it. Again, the text saith, that they were baptized confessing their sinnes, implying that the act of Baptisme was a confession of sinne, as a man that washeth doth by washing confesse (though he say nothing) that he was defiled, but if an orall confession which the words do not yeeld, yet whether they made their confession before or after baptisme, is not said, nor can be proved out of the Text; neither can a pre­cept be drawn from an historicall narration, that these men did confesse their sins, it is as much as it can prove, that it is lawfull for those that can confesse their sins so to do; but all that may be baptized must confesse their sins, will no way fol­low: For the second place, Luke 3.10. that is, some mistaken place.

He further affirmeth, that the Apostles did require before baptisme, shewes of faith, and repentance, and citeth many places out of the Acts; whereas not one place that he citeth, proveth any such thing, that the Apostles did require any man to make any shew of his faith, or repentance before baptisme; it is true, they teach men to believe and repent, but not take any account, or require them, or any person to give any account to any Minister before they were baptized, let that be proved, and the businesse is ended, to use his phrase; but, to give a full answer to all that can be alledged of that kinde from Scripture, I say, that the Apostles did indeed preach faith, repentance, and baptisme altogether, but what­soever was said of faith and repentance, in reference to baptisme, was either do­ctrinall, or historicall; what was doctrinall, was without any implication of ac­count of it: what is historically related of faith, and repentance, cannot imply any confession or manifestation, otherwise then in the very act of baptisme it self, seeing it was impossible for the Apostles to baptize nations, and countries, and cities, if no credence had been given to the doctrine of baptisme; so that their declaration that they believed and were baptized, might well be related by the Historian, though nothing were intended but that, that they were baptized: For, when Historians relate any fact done, they take liberty to observe the necessary motives and circumstances of the fact, without any other implication, then that the fact was done; nay, had not the Holy Ghost mentioned any beleeving at all, but only said that they were baptized, we might have inferred from the fact, without rashnesse, that if Peter, or Paul, or any of the Apostles did baptize, them that Judea, Jerusalem, that is, the prevailing party did beleeve, that there was some kinde of credit given to their doctrine, that they did believe there was some kinde of good or benefit that was like to come of baptisme, or otherwise they would not have endured one or two men to have baptized them, but that a pro­ [...]ssion of faith in a catecheticall way, whereof the Apostles did, and of duty ought [Page 50]to take account, that is not said; I hope, to make appear on just occasion was not done.

The fourth argument is taken from the next age immediately succeding the Apostles; what is said concerning that point, is not argumentative, it dependeth only upon humane testimony, and men that give testimony thereto, are partially related where their testimony is agreed upon, that they did say so, as they are re­ported, yet their credit is questioned by him that disliketh their saying; some­times that part of the work, out of which any thing is alledged, is proclaimed spurious, and that very author that we are content to alledge, with honour, when he speaketh for us, him we bespatter and vilifie, when against us; so that what can be said of this kind, savoreth rather of affection, ostentation of reading, then of argument, and yeeldeth matter of concertation, rather then satisfaction; and there­fore I leave the Reader that desireth to know more of this matter, to Dr. Holmes, and others, that may wrestle with Mr. Tombes in this point, my resolution being only to deal with him in such things as may carry shews of argument out of Scripture, and so I come to the next argument.

The first argument is of the same nature with this, that the ages that did use baptisme, took it upon wrong principles, as a tradition and imitation of Jewish circumcision, without universall practice, mixed with other errors. Among Apo­stolicall traditions, many were vainly reported and taken up to countenance seve­rall errors, as delivered from the Apostles; if some have disclaimed the proof of Scripture for childrens baptisme, and held it notwithstanding lawfull from wea­ker grounds, that doth not any way weaken the authority of Scripture, and strength of reason taken from thence. If any one hath proved baptisme lawfull from Apostolicall tradition, that doth not hinder me, or any other from proving it lawfull by Scripture, neither doth the mixing it with errors in the same person, make the baptisme of Infants erroneous, if so, all truths would quickly be turned into errors, seeing few men have been without their slips, which yet have not only held, but defended and propagated with admiration many pretious truths: Mr. Tombes would be loth, if his Anabaptisme be convicted erroneous, that all that he hath, or shall hereafter speak, should be therefore reputed erroneous: by the same reason, all the truths that were taught among Papists, are eo nomine er­roneous, because they taught them: and so not only the doctrine of the Trinity, but the incarnation of Christ, th [...] [...] of the dead, were therefore erro­neous, because those that held [...], held likewise many other heresies, and so his tenth argument [...] [...]wered.

His 6, 7, 8, and 9. [...] neer alike, and all to little purpose, that I had thought wholly to [...] them, but that men would have given some other construction then [...] were weak, and therefore omitted, I shall therefore say something of [...], le [...]t men willing to be deceived, should place strength, where indeed there is none.

He telleth us in his sixth argument, that Infants baptisme hath caused many inventions to support it, and hath occasioned defect in Church policy, but proveth none of that which he saith: he only affirmeth, that Infants-baptisime was sup­ported by sureties and Episcopall confirmation: and that it brought in Church-covenant as a preparation to the Lords Supper, for abuses that may creep in with any duty, they do not take away the goodnesse or lawfulnesse of the duty it self.

His seventh argument accuseth baptisme of Infants, with four errors: First, that baptisme conferreth grace by the work done: The second is regeneration: The third, Infants dying are saved by the faith done: The fourth, regenerate per­sons may fall from grace.

To these two arguments, I plainly say, that none of all these things are occasioned by Infants baptisme, or if so, men may not doubt of the goodnesse of all such things as wicked men may, or will take occasion to be offended at: for then Christ and the Gospel should be principally questioned, the great stumbling stone and rock of offence; so that occasion of offence is an argument, rather of goodnesse then of fault, Satan being most ready to entice us to corrupt our best actions.

What, doth baptizing Infants imply the conferring of grace by the work done? nay, we say of Baptisme, as Saint Paul of circumcision, that is, not baptisme that is outward in the ceremony, but that which is of the heart; but the praise of that is not of man, but of God: we cannot praise men for baptisme of the heart, God baptizeth, seeth, judgeth the heart, we baptise the body, but leave the residue to God only; in steed of Christ, we teach those children that by their parents are brought to be enrolled the disciples of Christ, the things that Christ hath com­mmanded us, and tell the baptized, when they come to be catechised, that they must have the effect of their baptisme by faith in Christ, and not by the work done. What Mr. Tombes, are all Pedobaptists Papists? these are strange calum­nies, and why must Infants baptisme necessarily imply, that the regenerate may fall away from grace? can none of your baptized persons that are baptized being of full yeers fall away from the effect and benefit of their baptisme? if that be not an heresie, that such men as are judged believers by your Ministers, and so ad­judged fit for baptisme, and baptized, cannot ever after fall away from grace, I know not what is. I hope Religion and knowledge of God, is not brought to that outward formality that all should consist in your humane judicature▪ it seems, Mr. Tombes, when he baptizeth any he will promise the parties he baptizeth, that they shall never fall from grace. I have heard many ignorant people use this argument, but that Mr. Tombes, a man cried up for learning, should use such an argument, is admirable and strange to me; and certainly, by this Mr. Tombes doth plainly confute himself guilty of that opinion, that baptisme doth conferre grace by the work done: For he inferreth, that if children may be baptized in In­fancy, then men may fall away from grace, because many, not withstanding their [Page 52]baptisme, become wicked afterward, doth not this imply, that if they were bap­tized, they were gracious? if baptisme do not conferre grace by the work done, how can it be inferred, that such men, as after baptisme turn wicked, do fall away from grace? Saint Paul, speaking of false teachers, 1 Joh. 2.19. saith of them, they went from us, because they were not of us: not that they fell away from grace, but they deserted the profession, because they were not gracious: but, saith Mr. Tombes, if baptisme be administred to Infants, and they walk not according to their profession, they fall from grace, no such matter unlesse Mr. Tombes will say, baptisme cannot be administred but to the gracious, they fall from baptisme, and so will many that Mr. Tombes, or any the most discerning of them all, not­withstanding all the caution that can be taken, or else it were a most happy case to come under their hands which cannot be imagined, unlesse it flow from the oper [...] ­tion of the work done, some of them that passe their examination will undoubted­ly be unfaithull, or at least may be such, for ought they can do to prevent it; so that if they do deceive them and obtain baptisme, then baptisme must conferre the grace, or they may remain ungracious still; and so notwithstanding their bap­tisme, they cannot be said to fall away from grace which they never had, though they should renounce their baptisme, muchlesse by not walking answerable to the profession into which they are baptized, or not behaving themselves as Disciples ought to do.

The eighth Argument is taken from this, That baptisme of Infants hath caused many faults and abuses in discipline, worship, and conversation; this is likewise only said, nothing proved in it, he reckoneth ten of these: First, private baptisme: Secondly, baptisme by women: Thirdly, of unborn Infants: Fourthly, Baptizing Infants of uncertain progeny: Fifthly, they that are baptized in the the name of the Lord, know not the Lord: Sixthly, it hath brought in the admission of igno­rant and prophane persons into the Church, and unto the Lords Supper; for who can deny rightly the right of the Church to the baptized? Seventhly, it p [...]rverteth the order of discipline; that first a man be baptized, and after among the cate­chised: Eighthly, the sacrament of baptisme is turned into a prophane meeting to feast together. Ninthly, men forget baptisme; so that it hath the force of a carnall right, and not a spirituall institution: Tenthly, it taketh away, or at least dimi­nisheth the zeal and industry of knowing the Gospell: But, be all these faults? and are all of these flowing from Infants baptisme?

First, I shall shew, that many of these have no affinity at all with Infants bap­tisme. First, private baptisme hath nothing to do with Infants baptisme; for that Infants may be baptized publikely; nay, Lawes may be made, requiring their publike baptisme, though Infants; nay, the Directory is at this time so penned, and in all times publike baptisme was principally aimed at and desired; and for the most part so performed; what he meaneth by private baptisme, I do [Page 53]not know; baptisme in an house among so many as make a congregation, I can­not discerne how that can well be accounted any such fault: I am sure he hath not proved it.

2. He telleth us that baptizing of Infants hath brought in the baptizing by women, as though Ministers may not baptize children as well as women.

3. The baptizing of Infants hath brought in the baptizing of children not brought to light: for my part, I can say nothing, but wonder at such an in­ference.

4. As for baptizing of children of uncertaine progenie; I know nothing of it, but that if any man that is a Christian himselfe will undertake to bring him up a Disciple of Christs, such a childe may be baptized.

5. They are baptized in the name of the Lord that know not the Lord: what inconvenience from that? It is true, St. Paul saith, No man can call upon him of whom he hath not heard: It would indeed put on the forme of some probablity (if it were referred unto the person that did call on the name of the Lord) that it were something absurd: but doth it follow, because no man can call on him of whom he hath not heard; therefore he cannot call on the name of God in the be­halfe of any but such as have heard of God? none can pray but those that have faith: but may not a faithfull man pray for an Infidell? may not a Christian parent pray for his childe, because the childe doth not know the Lord? this were very strange: as for the childs consent, I say so farre as concernes the Covenant between God and man which is sealed in Baptisme, consent is not required on our part to the obligation: we are bound to obedience, and are under the sancti­on of condemnation if we consent not: and this is the very reason why circumci­sion which had as great a respect to the circumcision of the heart as baptisme, was as vaine, and nothing without faith as baptisme was, yet stamped on the infants of the Jewes, wherein the Scripture is not silent; therefore this argument is not of any force that baptisme is not to be administred to Infants, because they doe not consent, unlesse the consent of the party to be baptized were required to the obligation: if the childe were free from those duties unto which he is tyed by his baptisme untill he had consented thereunto, it were a great wrong to baptize him and thereby lay a yoke upon him without his consent, from which he were other­wise free; but whether he consent or not, the obligation of obedience and faith lyeth on him, and the sanction of wrath and condemnation attendeth on the In­fidell and disobedient whether they consent or not, whether they are baptized or not, so that consent both to obedience, and faith, and baptisme; whether bap­tisme be represented to them as already done, or to be done, is required of him that is adultus or of yeares, as a duty, not as liberty; [...] [...]fusing to consent is a sinne and punishable both by God and man, though these consist much in internalls, of which only God can judge and punish: faith and obedience [Page 54]of the heart; but as for the externalls of Gods worship, such as are the externall rite of baptisme that is to be performed in the sight of men, and men may re­quire him that is of yeares to consent to his baptisme, laying the neglect on him as a sinne, and punishing him for it as for adultery, fornication, or any other pub­like offence, leaving the matter of faith which is private, to the judgement of God: so likewise may the Nations receive baptisme for the whole, as all other externalls, requiring parents to bring their children as before: I have thought good to speake something to this point, because it seemeth to carry some shew of reason with it, that no man should be tyed to a Covenant unto which hee never gave any consent, which in free covenants is true, though in publike covenants we are tyed by the covenants of our Ancestors, and are bound by those lawes wee are borne under, made by the consent of our parents; but in the case between God and us, he made us, and giveth lawes to us, under which we must live or dye (I take Lawes here in a generall sense to signifie direction for faith and repentance, as well as any other rules of life) not by vertue of our owne consent, but Gods ab­solute right and authority.

6. Mr. Tombs telleth us, that baptizing of Infants hath brought the admission of ignorant and prophane persons unto the communion of the Church, and to the Lords Supper; for who can deny rightly the rite of the Church to the baptized? so he.

To this I answer, that the engagement of the parent, to instruct his childe (which is but his duty) will certainly be a great meanes to set men upon the per­formance of their duty therein, when men shall solemnly in the presence of God before a congregation be charged with the bringing up of their children in the feare of God, that they must looke to their owne conversation that it be exem­plary to their children; if this be not performed by the parents, yet the charging it upon them out of Gods word, cannot but be a meanes rather to keep out igno­rance and prophanenesse then to bring them in; can any means be used by man more available then to instruct children in their tender years in the knowledge of God? Certainly God hath informed us, that this is the most lasting know­ledge that wee learned in tender yeares, and our experience doth abundantly confirme this. Now what greater care can bee had by the Church then in such a solemne and sacramentall manner for a man to bee charged with the education of his childe as a Scholler of Christ, as soon as he is able to learne any thing? if this be a way to introduce prophanenesse and ignorance, I know not what can keep it out; but he implyeth as a great sinne, that ignorant persons should be admitted into communion of the Church, and the Lords Supper; for this admittance into the communion of the Church, if any thing may be argued from thence touching the unlawfulnesse of Infants baptisme, a just and due tract ought to be instituted, wherein the whole question must be stated; what is meant by [Page 55]communion of the Church, whether he understand the visible or invisible Church, whose office it is to admit, and whose to shut out of the Churches communion? what be the rites of a visible and what of an invisible Church? how can the In­fant come and demand the Lords Supper, which he distinguisheth from the com­munion of the Church (but how I cannot tell) untill they be instructed to know the Lords body to remember the death of Christ, and examine themselves, which they are commanded to doe, and then eat? but where is the Minister commanded to give the Sacrament to all that are in the Church, or else to turne them out of the Church? these things must be proved plainly, or else otherwise the argument drawne from hence against childrens baptisme is abignotioribus: Christ giveth you a charge to baptize all Nations: you say nay: we shall then let in ignorant and prophane persons into the Church; you will not baptize any untill they be fit to receive the Sacrament: you were as good say, you will make commissions your selves: Christ bids baptize and teach: you say there is more in the matter then so: you will baptize when you please, and whom you please, they that will bee baptized must passe your censure, and stay your leasure.

Christ hids you teach, and so much examination as is needfull for teaching may be deduced from thence: but did God give you in charge to admit and refuse, and give you any rules by which ye might walke in the discharge of this duty? if so, ye might then justly plead this right, and make that an argument to remove all that standeth in its way. But I wonder extremely at the in temperate zeale of those that plead the duty of admitting and refusing of men ex officio from and to Baptisme, and the Lords Supper; and herein the Lords Supper is the most cryed up priviledge which you here fall upon (whether out of your owne opinion as it seems by some is suspected, or to confute your adversaries) and make this as a medium to prove that Infants may not be baptized, because none may be admit­ted to the Lords Supper that are wicked; though for my part I doe not understand the consequence how baptizing infants and charging their parents to bring them up in the fear of God would be a means to cherish and foster up ignorance and sin. But here men cry out against liberty to come to the Lords Supper, as if that would pollute the Sacrament, and countenance sin; as though men might not have liberty to come to the Lords Supper upon their own examination, and yet might justly be punished for their sins when they can be proved against them: may not men make choice of their owne habitations and drinke when they please, and yet be justly punished for adultery and drunkennesse? I do not know but the Magistrate may suppresse and punish sin, though men may be allowed their liberty to receive Sacraments: For my part, I wish some stricter course were taken with sin.

The seventh fault laid to the charge of Infants baptisme, is that, it perverts the order of discipline, that first a man be baptized, and after among the catechized; but who I pray you, Mr. Tombes did lay downe this for an order of Discipline? it [Page 56]seems Sacraments are subservient principally to Discipline: I had thought the use of Sacraments had been for confirmation of doctrine.

But let us once heare where this discipline is, what footsteps in the doctrine or practice of Christ and his Apostles: As for the practice of the Apostles, there is nothing found but conversion, and baptizing, without any interposition of time: that of Matth. 3.5, 6. there Jerusalem, Judea, and all the region round about Jordan, came to John the Baptist, and were baptized of him; as like Acts 2. no catechising either of these persons: if ever they meant to know Christ, must be ca­techised after their baptisme, or not at all; I understand not any such duty of ca­techising, if not comprehended in the duty of teaching; and doth this seem a thing so strange to you, that men should be taught after they are baptized? What? may not men be taught after they have bargained to be disciples? This is all one, as if a man should bargain with a School-master, that his son should be his scholler, and from that day forward, the School-master should never teach him; but this ra­ther dependeth upon the use of the Ancients, then authority of the Word.

The three last confute themselves; as for recrimination, I see the Anabaptists so soundly paid with abuses and faults, that have been laid to their charges by others, that I shall not meddle with them in this point, usus per se, abusus per accidens.

The ninth Reason, that which causeth unnecessary disputes, that cannot be de­termined by any certain rule, that is deservedly doubtfull: but the tenet of In­fants baptisme is such. All these disputes are determined by a certain rule; when the commission plainly chargeth the Ministers to baptize all the world, so as they can make them disciples, if any will undertake to bring them up in the fear of God, and instruction of the Gospel: or they of yeers do undertake for themselves submission to the Gospel, they may be baptized, this is the rule of the Word: Abraham had not only right to circumcise his own children, but he might buy a childe and circumcise it; nay, if he bought it, he must circumcise it.

But grant that they must be taught first, tell me how will Mr. Tombes satisfie the doubts that may arise from hence? how much they must learn first, how long they must be catechumeni? secondly, who must judge of their sufficiency? third­ly, what if any should baptize them before they were fit? whether that must be accounted a void act, and the party put again among the catechumeni? fourthly, whether, if this accounted valid, whether the party that was baptized before he were sufficiently catechized, must for ever after remain ignorant? together with many other of the like nature, which I shall put among my reasons for chil­drens baptisme.

The tenth Reason is the same with the first, only there he handleth accidens sine subjecto, here in subjecto; there he saith, it was mixed with other errors: here, that those that held Infants baptisme, held other errors; therefore I conceive that already answered.

The eleventh, Pedobaptists agree not among themselves, when Anabaptists do this, may be an Argument, not till then; and yet answerable, that men may sooner agree in evill then good, as arising from a more common principle.

And now I am at last come to his last Reason, and that a weighty one, saith Mr. Tombes: But it is taken only from a seeming effect of Infants baptisme; if there be any weight in an Argument, from an effect, that is, ab effectu, proximo, & per se; but this doth but seem to take away one end, and, perhaps, the primary end of baptisme; that it should be a signe the baptized sheweth himself a disciple, and confesseth the faith. Mr. Tombes telleth us, that many things argue, that it should be such a signe, but keepeth his arguments to himself; for my part, I know none, I know nothing charged upon the party to be baptized, as a preparation to his baptisme: as for profession of faith, that is no where required; its true, Philip did teach the Eunuch baptisme, and faith, but profession of faith he taught him not: It is likewise true that St. Luke doth historically relate, that the Eunuch did confesse his faith, but of this before.

But Mr. Tombes doth prove that men must confesse their faith before baptisme, because baptisme is a signe that the baptized sheweth himself a disciple, and con­fesseth himself a disciple. To this, I first say, that baptisme may be a signe of pro­fession, but not a sacramentall signe: A sacramentall signe is to signifie what Christ hath set it to signifie, namely, food and nourishment; this is the end of a sacrament, to lead our infirmities to the apprehension of the great things of God; to comprehend the vertue and efficacy of the body and blood of Christ, the parti­cipation of the fulnesse of Christ, to lead our faith by the authority of God, to the apprehension of the things of God. It is true, our duty is annexed to receiving of sacraments, whereunto we are bound by vertue of the command of Christ; but the signification of the sacrament is not in our duty, but in Gods mercy; were not our duty conversant about an incomprehensible object, we should have had no need of sacraments: But, for Mr. Tombes to deny sacraments to be visible signes of grace, without giving any reason for it, when St. Luke doth plainly tell us, that baptisme doth wash away sin, Acts 22, 16. arise and be baptized, and wash away thy sin: and St. Paul doth tell us plainly, that the bread which we break, is the communion of the body of Christ, shewing that it is a distribution of the body of Christ; communication is properly, superiorum ad inferiorae; I re­member I have read in Arist. Topic. lib. 4. cap. 1. Partic. 6. Keck. lib. 1.72. that participare est suscipere ejus quod communicatur definitionem; and Keckerman in the quoted place saith, effective individua, multa communicant: ut ignis cal [...]r [...] aquae; where you see, that communication is still rendred by giving the whole nature and definitions as in universali, or in exciting qualitatem similarem, a like quality in another body; whereby it must appear, that Christ in the sacrament, doth communicate or distribute some grace among us: as for our duties, that [...] [Page 58]vertue of the command are annexed to the receiving of the sacrament, those are externall to the nature of the sacrament, though necessary to the efficacy thereof unto us: This must needs be a declining cause, that enforceth the strongest patron of it in its defence, to deny the nature of a sacrament.

But see further: Mr. Tombes saith, that baptisme is a signe of profession. Pro­fession is taken popularly and materially for the Art or Trade that is professed, and then men may be said to wear some badge or signe of his profession; other­wise, in a proper and strict sense, Profession is nothing else, but a signe of something in the heart or minde of him that doth professe; so that profession of our faith is but a signe of our faith, and a signe of that profession is but a signe of a signe; nay, profession it self is more manifest then any sacra­ment can be, and therefore needeth no signe; but grant it were the signe of our profession, what were that to prove that profession must be before baptisme? sure, signum & signatum be simul natura, the signe and thing signified, are of the same continuance, one cannot be before another: Here is in this argument another cir­cumstance; that baptisme is frequently put for doctrine: therefore doctrine must go before baptisme, nay rather, then baptisme doth teach: for that which is any where translated metaphorically, must have resemblance with the primi­tive signification: as if a man shall call his son the staf [...]e of his age, the son must sustain his father in his feeble condition: though I do not know how any of these places do prove any such thing, that baptisme is taken for doctrine, otherwise then materially, as in Acts 10.37. John is said to preach baptisme: so is he said to preach repentance. As for Mr. Tombes Argument from witchcraft, which he confuteth, I leave every judicious Reader to think what he pleaseth, as not being worthy the consideration of a Divine; and thus I conceive Mr. Tombs Argument answered. I come now at last, to mine own Arguments for Infants baptisme.

Those that in mans judgement ought to be esteemed fit for the kingdome of God, are by man to be admitted to the priviledges of the kingdome, viz. baptisme; but all Infants in mans judgement are to be esteemed fit for the kingdome of God, therefore all Infants must be admitted to the priviledges of the kingdome, Matth. 19.13.

I have already discussed this point, Christ findeth fault with his Disciples, for not suffering little children to come, and saith not, I know these are of the king­dome of God; but telleth his Disciples, not only they, that were brought, but such as they, and that not only such as they in his estimation, but their view, otherwise there had been no ground of a rebuke, but commendation; rebukes be instructions for the time to come, at least, it is not well done; do so no more; when you see any such as these are, suffer them, and forbid them not. You see the precept for the future is generall, men do not use to reprove but to the purpose, that the thing reproved be no more done; therefore the Disciples were to esti­mate [Page 59]not them only, but such as they were (and that in an assigned liknesse, name­ly, in that they were little children) as fit for the kingdome of God, and upon that ground suffer them to come to Christ. If these and the like had only been fit for the kingdome of God in the estimation of Christ by his omniscience, here had not been matter of reproof, but commendation: Christ would then have said rather, ye did well to forbid the little children to come to me, for you did not know whether the kingdome of God did belong to them; neither can I give you any direction concerning other children for the time to come, because you cannot tell to whom the kingdome of heaven doth belong; however, let these come; for I know the kingdome of heaven doth belong to them, and such elect children as these are; but ye see Christ doth rebuke them, and thereby giveth them directi­ons for the time to come, which he could not have done, if the likenesse had been in secret, and things only known to God.

But here Mr. Tombes and Mr. Blackwell, and others, will tell me, by this rule, Turks children, and Infidels may be brought to baptisme. If any will bring them, and assume the instruction of them in the doctrine of the Gospel, I know not but they may: and if Turks would part with their children to Christians, I think it were a very charitable thing so to do: For, the promise was never so tied to Abrahams loynes, neither for ought I know, to any believers, but to education in the family of Abraham, or any other believing family.

But they will further say then, by the same reason are they to be admitted to other benefits, namely, to hearing of the Word, and the other sacrament: Answ. I say, they are admitted to the residue of the Oracles of God, as soon as nature or grace do make them fit for them, they may have right before they can use them: they are first admitted to come to Christ for a blessing, before they are capable of instruction: and preparation for the sacrament of the Lords Supper, is charged as a duty, which is no where charged on the parties to be baptized.

2. That Sacrament, that requireth no preparation in the subject, is to be admi­nistred to every subject; but baptisme is a sacrament to be administred without any preparation in the subject, therefore baptisme is to be adminstred to every subject, every person, all nations.

That Sacrament that in the signe and signification, is preparative to all other grace that is to be administred without any preparation of the subject: but bap­tisme in the signe and signification is preparative to all other grace, therefore it is to be administred without any preparation: the major is true, or otherwise there would a processe in infinitum; if that which were preparative to all other graces should have preparations to that, and that must have other preparations; and so in infinitum. The minor I shall prove out of Scripture, and plain reason drawn from then: Gal. 3.27. as many as are baptized into Christ, have put on Christ: This doth probably prove, that men that are baptized, are baptized [Page 60]into Christ, which could not be affirmed, if they were in Christ before baptisme; they could not be said to be baptized into Chist, if they had been in Christ before, which, if faith and repentance must be manifest before baptisme must be affirmed, he that believeth and is penitent is in Christ without doubt.

Object. But some men will say, may not man believe before baptisme?

Reply. I answer no, he cannot, untill Christ baptise him with the Holy Ghost. Now, Christ baptizeth when he pleaseth, either before, in, or after ministeriall baptisme.

Object. But, if Christ hath baptized him before, what need the Minister bap­tize him?

Reply. Christs baptisme is not known to the Minister, whatsoever confes­sion of faith is made, he must therefore baptize, in obedience to the command of Christ, and leave the baptisme of Christ to him.

How would the Anabaptists insult in the cleernesse of such a text? And here I cannot but note a notable subtilty of the Anabaptists, I will not say how common with other heretiques, when they have cited a Text, and put a glosse upon it with­out any respect to the argument of the place, they presently cry the Scripture is all ours, crying down all the labours of the learned that is spent, though never so tru­ly and piously. For the cleering of the Text, that is, Tongues, that is Art: gives us Scripture; we have the Scripture, and then we can carry away the people, take heed that no man spoile you through Philosophy and vain deceit, and this shall serve their turn, to answer all they understand not. If a man tell them that Phi­losophy is conversant about nature, and such things of reason as are too low for the things of faith, and therefore have principles contrary to doctrine of faith, as out of nothing, nothing is made; and therefore make the first matter eternall, contrary to the doctrine of the creation, from a privation to an habite, no return, that which is dead cannot live again, contrary to the resurrection: but Logick is without any matter of its own, but teacheth men only how to find out the truth of any discourse, written or spoken. Oh, then Logick is nothing but falacies, and herein many schollers concurre with them to hide their own ignorance, whereas indeed, falacies be no part of Logick, unlesse you will say, no reason is reason: it is true, Logicians do mention falacies, as a man may teach a young workman what faults he may commit, whence some ignorant man may affirm, that the skill of such a trade was only in faults, as these do, who only count Logick falacies; and here they have such fooleries, to make the world believe, that reason was an Asse to their fancy, that men may wonder at them, they can shew how foolish a thing Logick is, they can prove a sheep have eight legs, two before, and two behind; two on the right side, and two on the left. My Logick can do more then his, and yet we shall be both fools if we want Logick, to know this is no Logick: First, I can prove a sheep hath sixteen legs, by setting him between four men, one [Page 61]before the sheep, the other behinde him, and on each side one; this sheep will have four legs before one man, and four behinde, &c. which make sixteen, for re­latives have no absolute nature: before and behind, may be the same thing in diffe­rent respects, the same foot is before, and on the right or left side: this Logick can discover well enough, without the help of a fool to flout at that he knoweth not. I impute not this to Mr. Tombes, but to the ignorant, that cry, all is their own by such a wile as this, as though none did regard Scripture but they, and all the Scriptures were cleerly theirs, what was spoken against them, was against Scripture, set by humane authority and tradition.

First, in the signe it is preparative to all purity, it is washing so much faith as must cause men of yeares to submit to baptisme is necessary, without which the Apostles could not have baptized; but faith and repentance whereby the heart should be purged, that those must be had before the party may be baptized, is an evacuation of the signe, and frustrateth the signification: it cannot be denyed that faith and repentance are required to the efficacie of baptisme, but subsequent to the Sacrament, the water doth sacramentally wash away sinnes: so Ananias Act. 22.16. saith to Paul, Why tarriest thou, arise and be baptized, and wash away thy sinnes? Now washing doth suppose nothing in the subject but foulnesse, the bloud of Christ cleanseth us from all sinne, 1 John 1.7. all the vertue of the pur­gation is in the bloud of Christ. Now can any man say that the bloud of Christ cannot purge unlesse the party be purged before? if faith and repentance were required before baptisme, then baptisme could not offer the bloud of Christ to purge sinne, because the party were cleansed before baptisme, then Ananias could not have said, Be baptized and wash away thy sinne; but wash thy sinne first, and then be baptized. Act. 15.9. St. Peter sheweth that faith doth purifie the heart. Now it is true, faith doth receive the Word and Sacraments, and maketh one and the other effectuall; but both Word and Sacrament doe propose Christ, the Word to the eare, Sacrament to other senses: Baptisme doth represent the bloud of Christ washing, and sense doth looke on the washing of water, and faith on the pro­mise annexed. Now as the word is proposed to the eare, so water is tendred, and the body washed with water; whence faith doth collect the purgation of the soul from the testimony of God; water is no more the immediate object of faith then the word; it is the authority of God in the word that is the object of faith, as likewise the bloud of Christ in baptisme; they that beleeve, and they that beleeve not, heare the word, and it is no prophanation of the word to preach it to an Infidell, neither is it any prophanation of baptisme to baptize an Infidell; yet it is hard to make him heare patiently that in no measure doth beleeve unlesse miracles, or in defect of them some assistance of the Civill Magistrate doe con­curre; so that baptisme is but an offering of the purgation by the bloud of Christ to the eye and the body, as the word doth to the eare, and may be tendered as the [Page 62]word to all Nations, the power of the one and the other is by faith in Christ con­veyed unto us in the sacrament of baptisme or the word: baptisme cannot worke as baptisme till after administration, whatsoever is said of it before is but the ope­ration of the word; the washing of water doth sacramentally strengthen our faith: no duty of preparation charged on any, no man ever reprehended for receiving baptisme unworthily; though the Minister hath baptisme charged on him as part of his duty, yet never any caution given to Ministers in generall, or to Titus or Timothy to take heed that they baptize no unworthy persons; nor any sinne or punishment charged on any Minister for baptizing any rashly or without due ex­amination; no precept concerning any difference, but baptize and teach all Nati­ons to the end that they may become the Disciples of Christ. Now where no Law is, there is no transgression; where God doth not charge sinne, how dare any mortall man say this or that is sinfull? if any preparation be required let the Scrip­ture bee shewed where that was taught, where baptisme was deferred till any competent preparation were manifest? what Scripture is directed to the catechu­meni; nay what one sentence of Scripture is applicable to them, that is not appli­cable to Christians at all times, as well after as before baptisme? Baptisme is a religious rite which men are easily perswaded out of principles of nature to embrace, as may be seen in all Idolatrous worships; they have their religious rites which they are perswaded come from the appointment of their gods, upon which ground they receive them. Now that God did appoint baptisme is no a­buse, and so we must tender it to Nations by the appointment of Christ, which though they receive but as an Infidell doth the word; yet when faith commeth they make use of it. Therefore the Apostles argue to move newnesse of life from baptisme already received. So Romans 6.3.4, 5. St. Paul argueth what use wee should make of our baptisme; namely, that wee should rise with Christ; but though the most noble way of arguing be from causes, and therefore in the Sacra­ment of the Lords supper, where the worthy receiving of that doth depend on an antecedent cause; there faith is said to obtaine the whole vertue of the worke. Joh. 6.35. I am the bread, he that commeth to me shall never hunger, and he that beleeveth on me shall never thirst, v. 47. He that beleeveth hath everlasting life, 51. Hee that eateth of this bread shall live for ever: Whereby he plainly saith, That he that beleeveth eateth my flesh, this bread which is my flesh sacramentally, and made such to me by faith. Never any such doctrine as this, he that beleeveth is baptized, because no doctrine is extant precedent to baptisme in reference to the Gentiles. See all the Epistles to the Rom. Corinthians, and the residue, all are written to Churches already baptized. Paul declared the whole counsell of God, and yet not one word what should be the carriage of the Catechumeni, or the Ministers towards them, as if he should suppose none under the right of the Go­spell that will not first bee baptized, and received by the commandement of [Page 63]Christ: so he that will teach any thing in St. Pauls Epistles, they must teach them to the baptized to whom they are directed; as for the Catechumeni, nothing is written or directed either to them or concerning them. As for those histories of the Acts, the greater part were Jews in Covenant with God already; unto whom Peter did indeed preach repentance in reference to that bloud that they were guil­ty of in killing the Lord of glory; not as preparation to baptisme, but repentance and baptisme are both exhorted unto as precedent to the gift of the Holy Ghost; whereas if such preparation had been needfull to baptisme, Peter should have stayed for the gift of the Holy Ghost to manifest their fitnesse, or at least given them some directions by which they might manifest their fitnesse, or shew their repentance and faith, which he never did. St. Luke doth indeed say, They that gladly received the word were baptized; but that they manifested it any way but by receiving baptisme gladly doth not appeare; and this was ground enough for an Historian to say they gladly received the word, wherein they were exhor­ted to be baptized when they were gladly baptized.

As for that story of Cornelius that was indeed a pure Gentile. Though Peter had commission enough to have gone to him by the command of Christ, Mat. 28.19. and to have baptized him and taught him the commands of Christ, yet it is plaine Peter did not understand the Commission, therefore God for Peters owne satisfaction, and the satisfaction of them of the circumcision, was pleased in all that story to goe before Peter in a miraculous way; Peter was so farre from bap­tizing of Cornelius, that he was hardly perswaded to goe to him or preach to him, but as God did go before him by miracles, which when they of the circumcision saw, the text saith, they were astonished: And of this very story St. Peter, Act. 15. and other places maketh use of to satisfie the Jewes touching the calling of the Gentiles: but this was the mercy of God during the infancie of the Church to use such extraordinary meanes for the drawing off the Jewes from that ceremo­niall distinction that God himselfe had put between Jewes and Gentiles, but in the orderly administration God sent the Holy Ghost, though by extraordinary manifestations, yet in a seasonable time when first he had tendered the meanes of grace: As for the falling of the Holy Chost upon the Apostles in cloven tongues, Act. 2. that came seasonably upon them when they had occasion to use them, and after had been baptized; but the Holy Ghost promised in v. 28. is promised after Peter had preached repentance and baptisme; nay on many after they were bap­tized, Repent and be baptized, and ye shall receive the holy Ghost: shewing that preaching and baptizing are but the tenders of grace, neither the one nor the other of any force unlesse the Holy Ghost come. Now though the manner of the giving the Holy Ghost be different, yet the season is according to the way of Gods dis­pensation, God will have outward means first tendered, and after he will blesse it where he pleaseth, among which outward meanes these are chiefe, if not all can [Page 64]or ought to be used by way of tender baptisme, and teaching, which is all that is tendred in the commission, whatsoever is is babbled to the contrary: baptising is set before teaching the commands of Christ, as I have formerly manifested; and indeed, it were a strange thing for the sacrament of baptisme to be tendered to men that were already clean, and approved, declared and manifested to be clean; it is true, it may be tendered to men that professe their faith, because man cannot judge them faithfull, notwithstanding any profession, and therefore bap­tise them; but if they could know and judge them faithfull, they might give them the Lords supper, in which all Christ is communicated, and baptisme should not be needfull; baptisme is the seal of the tender of Christ, and of the purging power of his blood, not of our communion or partaking of Christ, that is sealed in the other sacrament.

Now to come to the signification, it is preparative to all other graces, it signifieth regeneration; and therefore it is called regeneration, John 3.5. Except ye be regenerate by water and the Spirit, ye cannot enter into the kingdome of heaven. Now, certainly the Holy Ghost would not set forth the grace of bap­tisme by regeneration, or newbirth, if any grace had been preparative to it, it is not possible that any life or motion should be imagined before regeneration: It is true, in John 3.5. Except ye be born by water and the Spirit, unlesse ye be by water and the Spirit; that which we translate born, is [...], be, and Tit. 3.5. Baptisme is called [...], the laver of regeneration. Lest men may vulgarly imagine, that men are spiritually begotten by the Word, and were to re­main some time in their mothers belly, the church, before they were brought forth by baptisme: during which time, they were to be catechumens, and made fit to be received into the Church: that word which is translated born, John 3. in 1 Cor. 4.15. is translated begotten, I have begotten you through the Gospel: For, there it is [...], and indeed, there can be no imagination of life before there is a being, before begetting; it is true, adultus must have faith, such as it is, na­turall, humane: before he can be baptized, he must be willing by some inclination or other: it were barbarous to baptize a grown man against his will, which could not be gotten but by some kinde of credence, though it might be just with man to punish him with death that should refuse, as it is with God to punish with eternall death, such as despise baptisme; yet that Ministers should refuse to bap­tise any man that shall desire baptisme, untill he hath saving faith, is to require actions of life, and reason from a man before he were begotten, or cleannesse and purity before he were washed. Again, that sacrament that was administred unto all the churches of the Gentiles in the Scripture mentioned, without any mention in the Scripture, of any preparative grace that must it self be the symbol of the first grace, and preparative of all other graces: But baptisme is such, therefore baptism is preparative to all other graces. Let all the Epistles of the Apostles be searched, [Page 65]and ye shall finde they were all written to baptized persons, that they are full of exhortations to faith, and sometimes arguments drawn from baptisme past, to move them to repentance and newnesse of life, Rom. 6.4. St. Paul doth indeed tell them that they were buried by baptism with Christ, but what doth he collect out of that? therefore repent and believe, but doth he at any time, speaking of faith, and repentance, argue from thence to baptisme, and tell any of them, if they would believe and repent, they should be baptized? which the right method of handling the doctrine of the Gospel would have required, if faith and repentance had been preparatives; but I am confident, if any man shall take on him to teach faith, and repentance, as preparatives to baptisme, he must either make his Text, or draw that out of it that will not come: he that will teach any doctrine other then so much as may make them willing to be baptized, and repute them disciples, and teach them as disciples of Christ unbaptized, must follow no Apostolicall Precept or Example. That which is drawn out of the commission, is without ground, that teaching must go before baptizing, because [...], is set first: For, first the phrase of the words is changed, [...], whereas had there been a methodicall enumeration of things that ought to have been performed in order one before another, the stile ought not to have been altered; it should have been, [...], Go, teach and baptize; and therefore those that would gather any thing out of the order of the words, must be enforced to read them so, which the Text will not permit. Again, the word [...] is a [...] [...]rist. in the Imperative mood, which standeth for a Future, whereas the words, baptizing and teaching what I command, are both Present. Again, this [...], ye shall make disciples, is the end, and ought to be the first set down, and declared to those that shall be imployed about the means, as I have formerly pro­ved, and so the stile doth clearely manifest, ye shall make all the world disciples, baptizing them, and teaching them whatsoever I command, which is as much as by so doing, ye shall make them disciples: as if a man should say sowing in season, and making good choice of your seed and land, ye shall have a good crop; here is plainly intended, that these Participiall expressions, this sowing and making good choice shall be taken up for the mean, and the crop is to be expected after, as the successe and event of them: as for [...], from [...], to learn, and therefore some collect, that it doth imply a learning with profit, that is nothing to the prepara­tion; if there be any thing in that, it is in the successe, and it hath the vertue of a promise, and is estimated by God, limited and extended according to the good pleasure of God, Isai. 48.17. I am the Lord thy God, that teacheth thee to profit: Paul plants, Apollo watereth, it is God that giveth the successe; and if it should stand in that sense as a preparation to baptisme in the commission, it must contain a manifest falshood, or prove undeniably universall grace, if they shall teach with profit all nations, and baptize them; or at least, an universall nationall acceptation [Page 66]of the Gospell, teaching with profit can admit of no milder sense then that; and if every person must be taught with profit before he be baptized, then none ought to be baptized but the elect of God; and it were a sin for any Minister to baptize any other but such as received profit by the word, the word worketh to the hurt of the reprobate whatsoever shew of profit it may seem to have.

3. Reason, That doctrine that taketh away the distinction of the two Sacra­ments, that is a false doctrine; but Anabaptisme doth take away the distinction of the two Sacraments, ergo, the doctrine of the Anabaptists is a false doctrine. That doctrine that requireth preparation to both Sacraments, taketh away the diffe­rence of the Sacraments; but Anabaptists require preparation to both Sacraments, therefore Anabaptists take away the difference of the Sacraments.

The difference doth consist in this, that the Sacrament of baptisme is prepara­tive to the Lords Supper, sacramentally giving that to us which we stand in need of, to make us fit for the Lords Supper: I say, sacramentally, not that God cannot or doth not take his owne time of calling sometime before we are partaker of either Sacrament, sometimes after we have both Sacraments; yea and after we have sin­fully prophaned the Lords Supper: but Sacraments have their proper use and signification, and are as all other duties lyable to abuse. Wee must behave our selves as men under the meanes: we have our duties charged upon us of God, whereof some are officiall, some personall belonging to every mans person, about the performance of all which, we may sinne either by omission or misuse; but all the good that we receive by word or sacraments is of God: what we doe by way of office that lyeth charged on us by the rule that we receive from God, which is to baptize all Nations and teach them; the successe is of God, and the account of faith must be given to God; we can take some account of some workes, to wit, those that are externall; but of faith and of such workes as are imminent the thoughts of the heart, we can say nothing to them. Now the communion that is between Christ and us, is set downe in Scripture by Christs being or dwelling in us, and we in him; we must first be in Christ before he can be in us: we were in Christ by election before the foundation of the world, and therefore may bee re­ceived into Christ before we can have faith; nay we are said to be baptized into Christ, Rom. 6.3. so many of you are baptized into Christ Jesus, and the grace of baptisme is said to be wrought by the Spirit, by the Spirit ye are baptized into one body, 1 Cor. 12.13. and Gal. 3.27. As many as are baptized into Christ have put on Christ: Christ is never said to be conveyed into us by baptisme, but by faith. Ephes. 3.17. That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith: what is in­strumentally ours by faith, is sacramentally ours by the Lords supper: he there­fore that eateh Christ in the Lords supper, Christ is in him. Iohn. 6.56. Hee that eateth my flesh dwelleth in me, and I in him: but Christ is never laid to be in us by baptisme, but we are baptised into Christ; he is not baptized into us, but he is com­municated [Page 67]into us in the Lords supper, for which faith is required as a prepara­tion, and the habitation of Christ in us is ascribed to faith as a meanes as before, that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; but our birth in Christ, or regene­raion is not at all ascribed to faith, but to the Spirit and water, John 3.5. Except a man be born by water and the Spirit: and to the Word, 1 Cor. 4.15. I have begotten you through the Word, but never are we said, either to be born or be­gotten by faith: the acts of faith, are growth, life, and fruits of sanctification, Joh. 6.35. Those that believe and come to Christ, are said to eat and drink Christ: For, he that cometh unto Christ, is promised he shall never hunger; and he that believeth in him, shall never thirst. And this vertue is ascribed to the body and blood of Christ, from whence Divines do justly gather, that he that believeth, doth eat the flesh, and drink the blood of Christ, but no intimation in Scripture from whence any man can collect, that he that believeth is baptized, unlesse it be à po­steriori: For, he that doth believe, must first be baptized by the Spirit, before he can believe; and thus are the graces offered in the sacraments, kept distinct, which otherwise would be the same: that the grace of baptisme is initiall, that of the Lords supper is perfective, which may further be manisted thus: our cal­ling hath two parts, the proffer of grace, and the acceptance of grace proffered: The first is by the Word, the Spirit, and Baptisme; the other is by the Word, Spirit, Faith, and the Lords supper. I have here added faith, because the Scripture doth so, making faith an instrument by which we receive Christ: but Christ must be prof­fered to us by his Spirit and Word, before we can receive him, which is expressed in the word calling, as distinct from justification, and goeth before justification, in which we have the first act of faith, Rom. 8.30. Whom he predestinateth, them he also called, whom he called, them he also justified; we are not called by faith, but we are justified by faith, Rom. 2.28. and 5.1. Baptisme is the seal and sacra­ment of Gods work in us, which had need to be most cleerly manifested, and con­firmed unto us, as having most of God, and least of us, that we might submit to it, wherunto we are most averse; therefore what hath most of us in it, that pleaseth us best: as works better then faith, and faith, as we look on it in our selves, as a qualification is more delightfull to us then as it is in its own nature, working hu­miliation, teaching us to deny our selves, and rest on God: men do use to magnifie faith, but too many under a false apprehension, even of secrecie and liberty before [...] faith is not a boasting quality, nor to be pleaded before men, but God; and this [...], cap. 2. doth handle at large, shewing, that men are very inclinable to [...] [...]o [...]st of faith before men, and rely on works before God; and herein the deceitfulnesse of our hearts is very great, when we conceive we deal with an [...]-power, then we finde the things of faith apprehended most weakly of any thing, we can please our selves better in the opinion of our works then of faith, but when we come to deal with man, we are sure we treat of colours before blind [Page 68]men: there we can boldly talk, we may speak as freely as travellers, we cannot be disproved, whereby it cometh to passe, often times, that heart that is least upright, is most bold; faith is indeed, in time of need, very heroick in her exploits, in that she acteth by the power of God, but ascribeth little of her best actions to her self; she is alwayes conversant with God, and therefore cannot but be conscious of much weaknesse and infirmity; faith is so always loaden with difficulties, that she hath very little to say of her self; there must be great preparation on Gods part, before there can be any sense or feeling in man of the things of faith; there must be the mighty operation of the Word and Spirit, and God is pleased to adde bap­tism too, for faith to work upon: these things are of mighty operation, and so they had need, considering the sloth of heart that is in us to believe: it is well, if after the Word and sacrament of baptisme, faith do come. God layeth it as a ground and foundation for faith to work upon, and accordingly all the arguments of Scripture are to raise us to walk worthy of amendment of life, and to rise with Christ, Rom. 6. as if it should be said, God hath offered you grace in baptisme, therefore accept of it; ye are born anew in baptisme, let it appear in your conversation.

Argum. 4. That which maketh the admission into the Church meerly arbi­trary, that is a false doctrine; but the doctrine of Anabaptists maketh admission into the Church meerly arbitrary, Ergo, the major is plain; for, that nothing is more directly contrary to the service of God then will-worship, but denying any that are tendred according to the mind of Christ in the Word, and requiring such disposition in the party to be baptized, as the Minister pleaseth, without any rule from Gods Word, is to make the publike service of God, or at least a great part of it, wholly arbytrary; and this doth appear to flow from their doctrine: not yet any man durst affirm what was the measure of faith to be required how much he must believe that must be baptized, by means whereof the whole matter depen­deth on the will of the Baptizer, a thing most contrary to the nature of Religion; it cannot be imagined that the Holy Ghost would have been so silent in giving rules for the Ministers to walk by in the triall of the faith of the person to be bap­tized, if any such charge had lain upon his office. He must baptize believers only, saith Mr. Tombes, and the Anabaptists, but no Scripture directeth what, or how much he must believe; must it be as much as the Minister shall think fit, then some Ministers will baptize with very small triall, others will be very hardly satisfied: some will baptize as soon as the childe can be taught to say he believeth in Christ, others not till ten or twelve, others twenty yeers of age; wherein no man can either satisfie his own conscience, or any reasonable man; for that he walketh without rules, neither doth this difficulty from this doctrine come from accidental misconstructions or phansies, but inevitable necessity from the doctrine it self, that the Minister must baptize none but believers; yet cannot tell how much, or what he must believe before he be fit for baptisme, unlesse he walk by rules of mans making, without any intimation from Scripture.

5. That doctrine that giveth man that power which is divine, that doctrine is blasphemous and false; but the doctrine of the Anabaptists giveth man that po­wer which is divine, therefore the doctrine of Anabaptists is blasphemous and false.

That doctrine that giveth man power to judge of faith in another, that doctrine giveth man that power that is divine; but the Anabaptist giveth men power to judge of faith in another; therefore the Anabaptist, that power that is divine.

Faith is in the heart: with the heart man beleeveth to righteousnesse, and with the mouth he confesseth to salvation, Rom. 10.10. He therefore that judgeth of faith, must judge the heart which is proper to God. I the Lord try the heart, Jer. 17.10. Neither will it serve his turne to say, that he judgeth by rules of charity if this charge lay upon his office; to judge charitably it is one thing, another to judge ex officio; for the judgement of charity can never pronounce the person so judged to be such as he is judged by charity to be: judgements of charity are not alwaies true, if it be possible we have warrant enough to judge it so by charity: if children may possibly be such as the Kingdome of heaven doe belong too, wee may in charity judge them such: but if we are tyed by our office to baptize none but beleevers, it will not serve turne to say we judge them such by charity, to prove that we must baptize none but such as are beleevers, seeing we may by charity judge many beleevers which yet are not beleevers: againe judgement of faith is denied to belong to the Apostles themselves, not that we have dominion of your faith, 2 Cor. 1.24. If God had appointed Ministers to have judged of mens faith before they had baptized them, he would have given them some rules by which they should have been able to walke, which he hath not done; he hath annexed baptisme to the Ministers calling to let men know that the grace of bap­tisme commeth immediatly from Christ; therefore he sent the seale of it by that calling that came immediately from him, but hath promised those officers of his no speciall qualifications whereby they shall have abilities to discern the faith of men more then other men have; the judgement of charity, is not a Ministeriall qua­lification that belongeth to every man, and is no Ministeriall qualification.

6. That doctrine that denieth the interpretation of the promise made to Abraham which S. Paul maketh that is a false doctrine; but the doctrine of Anabaptists deni­eth the interpretation of the promise made to Abraham wch St. Paul maketh: ther­fore the doctrine of the Anabaptists is false. Those that deny the blessing of Abra­ham, and in him of all the Nations of the earth to be the Gospel preached to Abra­ham in reference to the Gentiles after their call, deny the interpretation that S. Paul maketh of the promise made to Abraham: but the Anabaptists deny the blessing of Abraham, and in him of all the Nations of the earth, to be the Gospell preached to Abraham in reference to the Gentiles after their call; therefore the Anabaptists de­ny the interpretation made to Abraham which S. Paul maketh; the words of S. Paul [Page 70]are plain, Gal. 3.8. the Scripture foreseeing that God would justifie the heathen through faith, preached before the Gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all Nations be blessed; where ye see plainly S. Paul affirmeth the promise to Abraham to be the Gospel, and the Nations to be converted Gentiles, and that in the promise made to Abraham, there was a Prophesie of the conversion of the Gentiles; and the Gentiles under the Gospell had Abrahams blessing, that is a blessing to them and their seed, as Abraham had to him and his seed: so that it is apparent that those which deny the blessing to the seed of the Gentiles, the blessing of the promise, deny Abrahams blessing to the Gentiles; which is directly to deny the interpre­tation of St. Paul concerning Abrahams blessing, and to deny that the blessing to Abraham was the Gospell, or that the promise was a Prophesie of the conversion of the Gentiles under the Gospell; all which things are plainly affirmed by St. Paul.

7. That doctrine that denieth the benefit or grace of circumcision to be offered in baptisme, that doctrine is false: but the doctrine of Anabaptists is a doctrine that denieth the benefit and grace of circumcision to be offered in baptisme; there­fore the doctrine of the Anabaptists is false. That doctrine which denieth what St. Paul affirmeth, is a false doctrine: but that doctrine that denieth the benefit or grace of circumcision to be offered in baptisme, that doctrine denieth what St. Paul affirmeth; therefore that doctrine denieth the benefit and grace of circumci­sion to be offered in baptisme, is a false doctrine.

The place wherein St. Paul doth affirme that we have the benefit of circumci­sion by baptisme, is Colloss. 2.11, 12. Let the argument be weighed, I have spo­ken to it in my answer to Mr. Tombes. In the which verse St. Paul affirmeth they were circumcised, that was not literally true; therefore he affirmeth in a figura­tive or metonymicall sense, signi pro signato, the thing signified by circumcision: and he further sheweth, how the benefit they were partakers of had resemblance with circumcision; circumcision did cut off the body by a synecdoche, part for the whole, but they put off the whole body, but it was the body of sin. Now this is done by the circumcision of Christ; it was this circumcision of Christ that made the circumcision of our fathers of any vertue: this had been as true of the Patri­arches, that they were circumcised in putting off the body of the sinnes of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ; whereof their legall circumcision was but a type, and Christs circumcision did put an end to that circumcision; yet the Col­lossians were circumcised in Christ: how could that be? the text plainly saith, they put off the body of the sinnes of the flesh, and that was their circumcision in the circumcision of Christ; it was the benefit of circumcision to the Jewes, which they had though they wanted the ceremony? Now all this benefit commeth unto you by being in Christ, get but into Christ and all is done; to put off the body is to dye; Christ dyed, if ye be in him, all that he did you did; he was circumcised, ye [Page 71]are circumcised; he died, ye die; if in him; thus were your fathers in Christ by circumcision: so are ye in Christ by baptisme, buried with him in baptisme: no­thing can be plainer then the grace and benefit of circumcision was offered to the Colossians in baptisme.

That doctrine that refuseth to hear and obey the rationall and manly phrase of the doctrine of the Gospell, and reduce all to the sensitive and childish delivery of the Law, that is an unfaithfull and disobedient doctrine; but the doctrine of Ana­baptists refuseth to heare and obey the rationall and manly phrase of the doctrine of the Gospell, and reduce all to the sensitive and childish delivery of the Law, therefore the doctrine of the Anabaptists is an unfaithfull and disobedient do­ctrine; God was pleased to deliver the service, which consisted in ceremonies and outward performances in such manner, that every externall was directed to them the length, heighth of their Temple, and of every thing that was con­tained therein, to shew that God would be the author of all things in his wor­ship: The colour, length of the curtains, of their altars, and every carved thing, were directed immediatly by God; the place where the Temple should stand: If we should rigorously look for particular rules in this kinde, as those Anabap­tists do in point of baptisme look for the like direction for administration of bap­tisme, as of circumcision; and for want thereof, to neglect what the Holy Ghost hath said concerning the nature of baptisme, and giving direction to have it ad­ministred to all nations, thereby leaving the precept or duty of baptisme without any lawfull use, for want of such sensitive and particular direction as they had under the Law, we might be condemned for will-worship, for building Chur­ches without a pattern and direction from God, how high, or how long they should be, together with many things of the like nature; refuse to pray pub­likely or meet to serve God because he had appointed no place: the truth is, what they say against baptizing of Infants doth conclude against any baptizing at all: For, if the particular assignation of the persons to be baptized must be dinstiguished by any qualification, for want of any such direction, we shall be en­forced to leave all unbaptized: Baptize all nations, saith Christ, and Acts 2.41. three thousand souls were added: Act. 8.12. men and women; these may compre­hend all, male and female, without necessary inference, that they were grown men and women.

Now, if we leave this sensitive and childish way, and walk by the reasonable sense of Scripture, how cleerly doth the Scripture give satisfaction in this point, I pray you observe? First, Christ doth command to baptize all nations: Second­ly, he telleth, that the promise belonging to any, doth entitle him to baptisme, Acts 2.39. Thirdly, that the promise is the same to Abraham, and the Gospel preached to the Gentiles, Gal. 3.8. that the promise was to Abraham and his seed; that baptisme doth circumcise us by ingrafting us into Christ, Col. 2.11, 12. [Page 72]By what rational excuses can we excuse our selves for disobediences to the com­mands of Christ, commanding us to baptize all nations, if we refuse any, that by a nationall covenant are brought unto us?

8. That doctrine, which under pretence of walking by Scripture, support all their doctrine by falacies, and false arguments, that doctrine is erroneous and false; but the doctrine of Anabaptists is such, I do challenge all the Anabaptists, and in particular Mr. Tombes, to produce any argument against Infants baptisme from Scripture, or sound reason, that shall reasonably conclude from the words without any addition or substraction, or may agree with the sense and argument of the words produced, then I shall account Mr. Tombes his sceptiques more tolerable; in the mean time, I wish he might receive satisfaction, and spend his time in confirmation of his weaker brethern.


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