« ForrigeFortsett »
3. That they denied Christ to be the Messiah, blasphemed him in his Doctrine (as the deceiver of the people) in his Life (as a VVinebibber & glutonous person) in his Miracles(as one that wiought them by the Devil, who are therefore condemned by Chrift, as guilty of the very fin of Blasphemy against the Holy Ghost, Mat. 12. 31.) is known, as being what is frequently remarked in the Scripture.
4. We no where find the Disciples accending upon the Ministry of the Scribes and Pharisees, notwithitanding this iupposed command or permission of Christ. Nay,
s. We cannot but think the supposition hereof, not onely incon. fiftant with, and opposite to that expression concerning Chrilt, Mar. 6.34. And Fesus wben he saw much People was moved with compassion towards them, because they were as. Sheep not having a Shepherd (what? without a Shepherd, and yet the Scribes and Pharisees, whose feeding they might lawfully attend upon; doth Christ pitty them in this destitute state, and not give them one word of direction to wait upon these profound and worthy Doctors ?) but also contrary to that solemn command given forth from the Lord, A&ts 2.40. Save your selves from this untoward generation ; and the practice of the Disciples, who continued in the Apostles Doctrine and Fellowship, and breaking of Bread and Prayer, Acts 2. 42.
6. Were that the intendment of Christ, as is suggested (and the Argument used by our Brethren valid) a lawfulness to hear the veriest Blasphemer in the world, that denies that Christ is the Meffiab, affirms that he was a Deluder of the people,a gluttonous person, a winebiber; one that did Miracles by Beelzebub the Prince of Devils, that persecutes even to death Chritt in his People, might by a like parity of . Reason be deduced. Christ commanded, or at least permitted, his Disciples to hear the Pharisees who were such ( ás hath been proved) therefore 'tis lawful to hear persons with the same chara&ers upon them. But God forbid any fuch injurious dealing should be offered to Christ, or that ару who pretend to fear God (and I hope do so in reality) should Itand by, a cause which hath no better Arguments to defend it, than what may be as righteously every way made use of for the attending upon the Ministry of the greatest Blasphemer or Opposer of Christ in the world. Evident then it is notwithstanding the great fourish that many make with this Scripture, for the abetting of their attendance upon the present Ministers of England, that is refuses to admit the
leaf fan&uary thereumca, The Serikes and Pharifees, mentioned Mat. 23. 1,2. may for ought we know be Magistrates, pot Migifters; if Ministers, they were, aş bath been proved, lawfully fo : Christ fayes concerning them, whatever they bid you obferve and da, that obferuandi die. Therefore 'cis lawful to attend upon the Ministers of England, whose lawful calling to thşir Office cannot be proved, yea, though there is not the lealt intimation of a Command from Chrift, or lo much as a permillion to his Disciples, to hear tbe Scribes & Pharisees,
-Nuge ei trice ficula! If this be to dispute,a man need dot fear but te be able to multiply Arguments at an eafię rate, for whatever he bath a mind to undertake the defence of a yet this is supposed by many to be of the greatest moment in this controverfie.
Object. 2. If it be said, But we find, Christ, and the Apostles after bim, going frequently, inte i ke Synagogues, were tbefe Scribes and Pharifaes preached.
Ax[wer. We answer, first; That all that Christ and the Apostles did, is nor lawful for Saints to practise, will pot be denied : many inftances are near at hand for its confirmation, should it so be, zia That 'cis one thing to gaisto che Synagogues, and another thing to go thither to attend upon the Ministry of such as taught there: this is the present catie, which that Chrift or the Apofttes ever did cannot be proved. 3. They went thither to oppose them in, and confuse their İnnovas tions and Traditions in the VVorship of God, to take an opportunity to teach and insuust the People in his V Vay and VVill: VVhich when any have a spirit to do, and are fatisfied that they are thereun. to called by the Lord, io respect of che present Ministers and VVore fhip of England, we fall be fo far from condemning them therein, that we thail bless God for them. But this is not to the purpose in hand: the attendance of our Brethren upon the Ministry of England is quice another thing, that requires ouber Argumeous for its support, Thao we have hithesie met wiib.
Parvas habet fpes: Troja je Tades hakat.
Object. 3. Paul rejoyceth at the Preaching of the Gofpel, though 'emas preached Dihi of enuy, Phil. 1.15, 16.
To which briefly; 1. There may be cause of rejoycing in respect of the iffue ando event of things, by the wife Providence of God, though the means
used for cheir production be evil; and not to be abstted or complyed wich: In what have Christians greater cause of rejoyciog than in the death of Chrift? Yer had ic been utterly unlawful to have joynid in counsel with, or any wayes abected or encouraged those wicked perfons that crucified and flew him. Should the Pope (end some fosuits into any remote pares of America to preach the Gosplel to the poor Indians there, here were upon fome accounts ground of rejoycing, yet ao ground for Saints to attend upon a Jesuitical Miniftry. Buc zly, it appears not, that these Paul Ipeaks of, were not true Gospel-Minifers, and so it reachech not the case in hand: This being that, we have proved the Ministers of England guilty of, viz. an acting in the Holy Things of God without any Commission from Christ, which when our Diffenting-Brethren prove they have, we shall easily acknowledge the lawfulness of attending upon their Ministry. 3ly, It follows not in che least, chat these the Apostle speaks of, were either norreal Saints, or not true Ministers of Christ, because they are said to preach him out of envy; the object whereof was not Chrift ; ( for had they envied him, they would never have preach'd him) but Panl, (thinking, says he, to add affli&tion to my bonds; which is conífant with Grace, and a lawful Million to the preaching of the Gospel. Yet, 4thly, Here is not in this Scripture the least word requiring Christi ans to hear them. That because Paul rejoyces at their preaching, therefore 'cis the duty of Saints to attend upon their Miniftry, is such a Non-fequiter as will never be made good.
Object. 4. The Ministers of England preach Truth, and is it not lawful to hear Truth preached?
We apswer, 1. That 'tis lawful to hear Truth preached is readily granted : but this must be done lawfully, and in the way of Christ's Appointment. 2ly. All that preach Truth are not to be heard, nor will our dissenting Brethren say they are. For, i. There was never yet any llereticalPreacher in the world, but he preached some Truth; is it lawful to hear fuch? this will not be said. 2. The Devil himself preached Truth, yet Chrift forbids him, and commands that he hold his peace. 3. The Popish Priests preach Truth; yer who will say 'tis lawful to accend upon their Ministry ?. But, 3dly, As the present Ministers of England preach Truch, So, 1. They preach it but by halves, and dare not for fear of the L. Bishops Iohibition, preach any doctrine, though
never so clearly revealed in the Scriptures, and owned by them as the Truth of Christ, he commands them not to meddle with. 2. The main Truths they preach (at least many of them) are contradicted in their practice. They'l tell you that the Lord Jesus is the great Prophet, and King of his Church; but how palpably this is contradi&ted by them in their practice, conforming to Institutions and Laws that are not of his prescription, who sees not? This we have already abundantly demonstrated. 3. With the Truth they preach, they mingle many Errors, directly contrary to the Scripture, and the Revelation Chrift hath made of his Will therein. Jostances of this kind have been already exhibited, to which may be added many more: we shall mention but a few, 1. That the Ministry, Worship and Government which Christ hath appointed to his Church, is not to be received or joyned unto, unless the Magistrates (where they are reputed Christi. an) do allow it. 2. That the Apocryphal books which have in them Errors (2 Mae 12.44,45. & 14.41,42. Ecclef.40.20. Wild.19.11.) Untruths (2 Esd.14:21,22, 23. 2 Macc.2. 4.-8. Tob.5.11,12,13with 12.15. Judith 8.33. & 10.9, with 0.12,1& 11,6,12,13,14, 15. iMac:9.3,18. wich 2 Mac.1.13 to 17. &9,1,5,7,9;28, 29.) Blasphemy (Tob.12.12,15.with Rom.8.34. 1 Tim.2.5. Rev. 8.3,4.) Magick (Tobit 6.6,7,8. & 9:2, 3: with 3.7;8. & 11,10,11,13. with 2.9,10.) and contradi&ion to the Canonical Scriptures, (Judith 9. 2,3,4. compared with Gen. 49.5,6,7. Eftber in the Apocrypha, chap 12.5. & 15:9,10. with Ester canonical, chap. 6.3. & 5.2. Ecclef. 46. 20. with Isa. 57. 2.) may be ufed in the Publick Worship of God. 3. Thar the most wicked," and their feed, may be compelled, and received to be members of the Church. 4. That Marriage may be forbidden at certain seasons, as in Lent, Advent, Rogation-week, cc. 5. That Baptism is to be administred with a Crofs in the forehead, and that as a symbolical sign. 6. That though the most notori ous obstinate Offenders be parçakers of the Lord's Supper, yet the people that joyn with them are not defiled thereby. 7. That there may be Holy-dayes appointed to the Virgin Mary, John Baptist, to the
Apostles, All Saints and Angels; together also with Faits on their Eves, on Ember-dages, Fridayes, Saturdayes ( 1o called heathenishly enough) and Lent.
8. That the Copez Surplice, Tippit, Rocket, c. are meet and decent Ornaments for the Worship of God and Ministry of the Gospel 9. That the Book of Common-Prayer is the true
Worship of God. ; 10. That Christ descended into Hell ( as if Chrift defcended into the place of the Damned, as the Papifts hold. , 31. That Lord Bishops can give the Holy-Ghost, and power to forgive and retain Sins. That Altars, Candles, Organs, &c. are necessary and useful in the Church of God.
13. That all Children t when baptized are regenerate, and received by the Lord for his own Children + Conamon- Prayer-Book by Adoption. Yea, 14. That Children
of Publick Baptifm. being baptized, have all things necessary for their Salvation, and shall undoubtedly be saved. So they profers in the Order of Confirmation in the Common-Prayer-Book ; with much more that might be offered in this matter.
Juda's preached, though a wicked man; and no doubt ?twas lawful, yen the duty of Saints to bear him.
To this we say, No doubt but it was so. But,.1.Judas was not a vifible wicked man at the time of his preaching, but so close an Hypocrite, that he was not known to be so, no not to che Disciples : But some of the present Minifters of England are visibly wicked and prophane.
2. Fudas was chosen, and called by Christ to be an Apotle, com. missionated by him to preach : but the present Ministers of England are not so, as hath been proved. So that this is not at all to the bus finess in hand.
Object. 6. But there are some good men amongst them, and such as belong to God, maywe not hear good. men s. To which briefly.
Answer. 1. That there are some amongst the present Preachers of this day, that are good men, we shall not stand to deny: Yet,
2. We crave leave to say, Thac they are all of them such as are fadly polluted and defiled by their Complyance, in respect of their Atanding in the Miniftry Antichristian, whose teachings Saints have no warrant to attend upon.
3. The greater hopes we have of their goodness, the more cautelous should we be of encouraging them in a false way; that they by our relinquishment of them, and separating from them (after we bave discharged all other duties we are satisfied are incumbent up